It’s Just Math

image by Bryan Kennedy
I loved this little piece by Bryan Kennedy titled “It’s just wood.” A concise philosophical statement about the freedoms that come along with knowing how to make things.

The same approach applies in so many different contexts.  Sometimes, it’s just aluminum, just software, or just silicon. It also reminds me of what a physics professor of mine used to say when explaining how simple something was: “It’s just math.”

StippleGen and a low-power DIY laser cutter

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.

DIY Electric Kistka for Eggbot

Ann posted instructions in our forums for creating an electric kistka (wax pen) for the Eggbot for traditional Pysanky egg dying techniques. She used nichrome wire, krylon tape, a modified kistka, and a 2xAA battery holder with a switch and described how to mount it in the Eggbot. She posted a couple of designs to Thingiverse demonstrating the technique including the rose design pictured above.

For a Humpty Dumpty design, she wrote up how she made it:

Using eggbot and custom electric kistka, plotted the Humpty Dumpty picture and text on an egg. First plotted outline, dyed brick, colored in bricks by hand with kistka, dyed blue.

You can check out her other designs for the Eggbot on Thingiverse.

The Classic Lego Space Flight Jacket

CLS Flight Jacket 15

Here’s a little project that we’ve been working towards for a long time: a custom-painted leather flight jacket (“bomber jacket”) featuring the “Classic Lego Space” logo.  (Yes, I totally spent years serving in the Lego space corps!)  And, if you’ve ever wanted to make your own painted leather jacket — whatever the theme — here’s how to do it.

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Proximity activated Snap-o-Lantern

Gabe Hoffmann wrote in:

I heard you on Science Friday talking about halloween, went home and looked on your website at Snap-O-Lanterns, and was inspired.  I added a phototransistor and infrared LEDs to make a motion sensing small pumpkin that can try to bite you.

Thanks for sharing your project, Gabe!

If you built a Snap-O-Lantern or were inspired by any of our Halloween projects, we’d love to see your photos in our flickr group.