The Open Source Beehives project is currently running a crowdfunding campaign with the goal of gathering information from sensor equipped hives throughout the world to help solve bee population problems like colony collapse syndrome. The sensors can also be used by individual beekeepers to monitor the health of their hive.
Even without the sensors and the citizen science, their hive designs are beautiful.
Building our April Fool’s Day project, the MarshMallowMatic, was a fun project but not without its fair share of trial and error. When heating flammable materials with an oxy-fuel torch, the biggest challenge is simply not setting them on fire.
In the video above — one of our first trials, before we had figured out how far away to position the flame — we wondered what would happen if we tried to “evenly” roast a marshmallow… with predictable results. Let’s just consider this an outtake.
Over in the Eggbot forums, user ragstian has been poking around in the firmware for the the controller board for the Eggbot, the EBB. He found an easter egg: holdover code from an old demo mode which would do standalone plots without a computer attached. The plot above depicts one of the very earliest versions of the Eggbot kit.
And on the reverse, www.egg-bot.com. Nicely done!
Introducing the MarshMallowMatic: the world’s first dedicated CNC marshmallow toasting machine— capable of custom marking and toasting of marshmallows under robotic control.
The MarshMallowMatic is built from a special, modified version of our Ostrich Eggbot kit, fitted with a compact oxy-fuel torch:
The oxy-fuel torch can produce a 1″ (2.5 cm) long flame, with temperature in excess of 5000 °F (2760 °C). “And wow, can it toast marshmallows!”
Upon seeing a photo of tires at a scrapyard making its way around the internet, we were reminded of something else that looks just the same: A pile of vintage magnetic memory cores.
These old cores came 50000 to a bakelite pill box, and were made in 1982, in East Germany.
A nice write-up on the Egg-Bot over at Brit+Co:
We realize it’s a little bizarre to have a crush on a robot, but we can’t help but blush at the sight of our newest geeky toy.
James “techninja” Todd writes that a few more hands might be helpful on the RoboPaint project:
RoboPaint is an open source app for controlling painting/drawing robots, made for my daughter’s award winning Open Source WaterColorBot! The project is taking off with lots of users and lots of great features, and is all written in web standards node-webkit to run on all operating systems.
Interested? Sign up to help out at http://www.doerhub.com/for/robopaint
Romy Randev of Looma is installing his latest piece, Penumbra at the Helix museum in Los Altos.
Penumbra is an interactive installation that responds to movement in its environment. Without any human interaction, Penumbra is disguised as a decorative glass wall. However, each colored glass tile illuminates individually as sensors that respond to movements control LEDs behind the glass.
Penumbra makes use of our Octolively modules, and we’ll be at Helix with Romy on Saturday March 29th, starting at 2:00 PM to talk about the art and tech behind Penumbra. Event information is available from Helix.
Our friend Steve Hoefer cleverly modified a pair of wind-up chattering teeth to serve as a toothbrushing timer with an integrated toothbrush holder/switch to help ensure thorough brushing. Learn how to make your own (using a 555 timer!) at Make Projects.
You never know what you’re going to find at the surplus store.