Pi Day is Here

Or, if you prefer, we’re halfway (well, 44% of the way) to Tau day, 6/28.  A fine day to watch the Vi Hart‘s Anti-Pi Rant. And, a fine day to round up some of our finest Pi, Pie, and mathematics projects:

Pi Blanket   Apple Pie

Pi blanket for Pi Day, and the Apple Apple Pie!

 

Earrings 2   Sierpinski Cookies-11

Sierpinski triangles out of polymer clay, and fractal cookies.

Fractal Snowflake Cupcakes - 24 fabric klein bottle

Fractal snowflake cupcakes, Fabric Klein bottle

Snowflake generator SymmetriSketch 2
Vector Snowflake generator application, and Symmetrisketch– for exploring other symmetries.

Christmas fractalSconic Sections
Christmas Chaos and Sconic Sections

Cool Wearable Electronics

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Mascot costumes are often hot and sweaty, and mascots are expected to enthusiastically energize their teams. At FIRST robotics competitions, there are also traditions of dance parties during delays caused by technical difficulties, leading to even more activity in a warm, heavy costume than would normally be expected.

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Cardinalbotics, an FRC team from San Francisco, made a mascot costume using an application of wearable electronics I had not considered before: cooling fans. The cardinal head was made of fabric sewn over shaped foam, with fans on the sides to keep everything cool inside.

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The fans were wired up to an on/off switch and adjustment pot which were hidden in a velcro compartment in the back of the head.

Muybridge Carousel for Eggbot

The Horse In Motion

In the 1870s, Eadweard Muybridge, using brand new photographic techniques, helped settle a bet about whether horses lifted all their feet off the ground at once. His iconic pictures of horses in motion are frequently used in arts and crafts. (Aside: we even ran into them at Maker Faire in a FlipBooKit animation.)

Muybridge Carousel

Amanda found a file on thingiverse of outlines of the Muybridge horses that were intended for use for laser cutting (for animation purposes). She remixed it for use with the Eggbot to make the horses go around the egg and published her Muybridge Carousel design on thingiverse.

Muybridge Carousel Trio

Photo by Amanda Geyer

Evil Mad Scientist Valentines, 2014 Edition

Lo Res Valentines

Last year we released a set of six equation-heavy ”Download and Print” cards for Valentine’s day.  This year, we’re doubling the size of the collection (to twelve!) by adding six more cards, this time heavy in symbols, not equations:

valentines

You turn me on” …with an SPST switch.

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I can hardly resist you.

There is room for a future superconductivity joke here, involving a phrase like “I can’t resist you (below a certain temperature).

valentines

You can download the full set — including the 2013 cards — here, a 500 kB pdf document.

As with last year’s set, print them out on (or otherwise affix to) card stock, and [some steps omitted] enjoy the resulting lifelong romance.

 

A Compendium of Watercolor Paint Pan Palettes

sargent art paint palette

As part of the documentation for the WaterColorBot project, we’ve put together a compendium of information about commonly available watercolor paint palette sets.  For each of the sets, we’ve tested to see how well they work in the WaterColorBot— in terms of physical size, color order, paint quality, brush quality, and so forth.

You can find the complete list on our documentation wiki site, here.