Becky Stern of Make: Online interviewed the crew of the latest OK Go video, which was a single-take Rube Goldberg machine.
Becky: How many takes did it require to get the final?
DB: I lost count. I think we did that first sequence about 70 times. When we got past the tire, we knew we had a chance. When the piano dropped without triggering the flags or chairs, we started getting excited. If the sledgehammer blew up the TV we were in the home stretch. It was a tense video to film!
PyroPenguin: Did you need to employ failsafes? If a component didn't activate because the component intended to trigger it was off by just a hair, did you have a system to activate it manually?
BD: Not re ally. I think if we were more film oriented rather than machine oriented we would have built in more manual "cheats". As it is, I think we did some things (or at least I did) that didn't play as well to camera as it could have just because I was preoccupied by the mechanism. But we were pretty determined that the thing work. In some cases, we spent a lot of time working out a mechanism that doesn't even show up on camera- like the pneumatic paper airplanes. it's a really reliable mechanism that is triggered by the machine, and yet that's happening amid such chaos that in afterthought I guess we could have just had a guy pushing a button. But I don't think anyone even considered that. There was a little assist in the curtain pull, because the curtains had a tendency to stick together, so if that was having trouble there was someone available to pull a little string to help things out. But I think that's it.
The public bathroom at Beijing’s Temple of Heaven Park now has a toilet paper dispenser outfitted with a camera and facial recognition technology to prevent toilet paper theft. From the New York Times: Before entering restrooms in the park, visitors must now stare into a computer mounted on the wall for three seconds before a […]
Poking a golden tortoise beetle (“goldbug”) triggers the insect’s color to change from gold to a red-orange. Inspired by the natural system underlying that insectoid superpower, MIT researchers have developed flexible sensors circuits that can be 3-D printed. Eventually, the technology could lead to sensor-laden skin for robots. From MIT News: “In nature, networks of […]
MNTNT’s Albert Clock is a clock that presents the hours and minutes as simple math problems. Is it annoying or engaging? Or…. both! In standard mode, the queries change every minute. They are completely random, so even the query for the hours change, even if the result stays the same. You can speed up this […]
The Raspberry Pi Foundation has done outstanding work packing a fully capable desktop computer into a package the size of a deck cards—especially one that only costs $35. But if you already have a working laptop, why should you care? Oh, how much you have to learn. Besides operating well as a compact digital media hub, […]
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 […]