Part of our continuing coverage of highlights from the 2014 Bay Area Maker Faire.
Mike from hackaday caught up with me at Maker Faire and got a bit of video of my racing snail, which I was showing as an example of soft circuitry alongside various projects of our friend Meredith, including her awesome StarBoard flexible circuit LEDs. Mike’s writeup points to the history and variety of Bristlebot projects. The racing snail is a personal favorite, with the nap of the fabric foot providing the direction to the bot’s motion.
A Drone’s Day at Maker Faire gives a beautiful perspective of an amazing event. You can see me as the drone goes follows me into Expo hall near the beginning of the video. Highlights include overhead shots of the crowds around the large outdoor art pieces and a drone’s eye view of the drone battles.
We’ll be sharing more from Maker Faire soon!
Photo by Rick Merrit, EE Times
EE Times came by and interviewed Windell in advance of his upcoming Maker Faire talk about best practices for Open Source Hardware.
…Big semiconductor companies are jumping on the bandwagon of open source reference boards. But their chips’ intellectual property remains carefully guarded corporate crown jewels. …
With Maker Faire coming up next week, @techninja42 suggested that Maker Faire Bingo would be a great way to get ready! With the help of some friends, he put together a site where you can grab a bingo card to play during your visit to Maker Faire. We tried it out with the WaterColorBot, but you can use your preferred automated printing method to make your own, or maybe even find a robot at Maker Faire to draw it for the ultimate Maker Faire Bingo!
Send your maker bingo suggestions to @mfbingo for inclusion in the bingo card generator.
Herb wrote in to say:
When I saw your Octolively LED circuit, the first thing I wanted to do was incorporate it into our electric guitar project.
I teach a basic senior physics class for non-science majors and wanted to try something different; a year-long design project.
We made a guitar from scratch that resembles a stealth fighter. We even wound the humbucker coils in the guitar… Your circuit is used to drive the exhaust lights in response to playing motion…It works well and offers a unique visual effect based on the selected setting…you can even hear the circuit through the amplifier when it drives the blue LEDs…
The Octolively is wired up with the LEDs pointing down from the bottom of the guitar (back of the plane) and the sensors pointing toward the neck to respond the motion of the guitar player.
His student, David, added:
Thank you for making such a great educational product to learn about LED’s and simple circuits. Our class worked together to put all of the parts in the correct place and it was a wonderful collaborative learning project.
Jens demonstrates using StippleGen2 with his low-power (300 mW!) DIY laser cutter and a classic image of Louis Armstrong.
After letting StippleGen2 crunch the numbers for a while I imported the resulting vector graphic file into inkscape and generated the G-code so that I could use my laser cutter to cut the image into a black paper. 2 hours and 23 minutes later I had a 20×20 cm piece of paper with about a 1000 holes in it and it looks awesome! Would be perfect for a lamp shade or just nice to put up in a window and let the sun shine through. I can highly recommend StippleGen2 it’s super easy and a lot of fun.
Wes wrote in to say:
I am an Electrical Engineer (graduated May ’72, Texas Tech U), but I never saw or even heard of a homopolar motor until last week, when I saw an electric motor made from four parts on National Geographic’s program, “None of the Above“. When I first saw it, I figured it must be a hoax. A DC motor had to have a commutator and two magnets.
Only when I was browsing around in Wikipedia did I find an article on the motor. I happened to have everything I needed, so I built one, not really expecting it to work. To my great surprise, it spun up to a few thousand RPMs in seconds. I read Wikipedia’s theory of operation, but it didn’t make sense. Today, I came across your wonderfully clear and simple explanation, and now I understand the motor perfectly.
I simply cannot thank you enough for your drawing and explanation.
Thanks for writing in— we’re glad to hear you enjoyed learning something new! The instructions for making the motor and the discussion of how it works are in our articles:
John Keefe took LED throwies in a new direction, adding a tilt switch to a coin cell holder and a flickering LED to make candles that can be “blown out” by turning them on their sides.
Related: Simple LED Projects
We’ll be at The Tech museum in San Jose this Saturday, April 26, for an Open Make session with the theme of “Flow.” The event is in collaboration with the Maker Education Initiative.
Open Make activities run from 10 am to 2 pm and are free with museum admission.
Previous Open Make posts:
Katherine Scott posted on Twitter:
@EMSL eggbot being used for demos by IDS imaging at the @AIAVision show. Awesome.