Institute for the Future teamed up with Sun Microsystems and Boing Boing Video to co-host the Digital Open, an online tech expo for teens 17 and under around the world.
In today's episode, you'll meet the "Funky Shiitake Mushrooms," a group of young people from a Fremont, CA high school who build robotic blimps. The one you see in this video also doubles as a fashionable hat, as you can see from the photo inset at left (that's me with the headgear).
The blimp in this episode is named "Skittles the Second," after the popular, cartoon-colored candy. They'd made an earlier version of "Skittles," but that one floated away. In fact, it floated all the way to a farm near Yosemite. The farmer found an ID tag on the floataway airship, and phoned a teacher at the high school to advise. The teen makers were eager to road trip out there and pick it up, but only one of them was old enough to drive.
Their energy and inventiveness was inspiring. I hope you enjoy the video as much as we enjoyed making it.
Read more about the youth competition in IFTF's press release announcing Digital Open winners. And you can visit team Funky Shiitake Mushrooms online, here.
Behold, the Blue Marlin, a “semi-submersible heavy lift ship” that is capable of hoisting and transplanting other, full-sized ships (that is ships as big or bigger than a US Destroyer-class vessel) all around the oceans.
Mister Alphabet is an action-figure designed to cleverly bend and contort into every letter of the Latin alphabet; the website is long on trademark warnings and arty Instagram photos, but short on details, like, “Is this an object of commerce?” and “If so, where does one buy it?” (via Kottke)
Phone chargers usually only deliver a few volts of juice at a feeble amperage, but they’ll deliver a lot more if you give them the chance. The BBC writes that a UK man died in the bathtub after being shocked by a charger connected to an extension cord. Richard Bull, 32, died when his iPhone […]
Custom coffee vessels are the perfect piece of office flair, but it’s just a matter of time before your VOTE FOR PEDRO mug will start to lose its relevant wit. Why not have a new one every day, with whatever silly nonsense you want sticking off the sides? You can save big on your novelty […]
The Lightning port has thus far resisted the cruel fate that befell the headphone jack, and despite rumors that it may be disappearing come iPhone 8, for the present and foreseeable future, Lightning cables are a hot commodity for iPhone users. As such, we must make do in this strange time in which long, glorified […]
All the filters in the world won’t save your smartphone pics from a shaky hand. To really step up your mobile photography game, you’ll need some kind of mount to hold it steady. You could buy a smartphone attachment for a conventional camera tripod, but who wants to carry that kind of gear everywhere they […]