Doggy AT-AT

Laika the dog is seriously styling in this AT-AT costume, created by Katie Mello.

(via Super Punch) Read the rest

AT-AT Walker made of pancakes

Jim, the resident genius at Jim's Pancakes, has made an AT-AT Walker OUT OF PANCAKES! PANCAKES!
Total time to create it was about 15 minutes, mostly because it took a while to get the legs “crispy” enough to hold up the body. From there, I placed the parts back on the griddle and used more pancake batter as “glue”. If you let the parts sit on low heat for long enough, the batter eventually cooks through and makes a nice strong connection.
And hey, lookit that, Jim's got a book coming out on making pancake art!

Star Wars Pancakes! (via Craft)  AT-AT walker made from scrap computer parts – Boing Boing Engineering a real-life “Star Wars” AT-AT – Boing Boing At-At Walker Boombox – Boing Boing Gadgets Imperial Scott Walker, the worker-hating AT-AT Destroyer – Boing ... AT-AT for America: restore America's glory with a functional, full ... AT-AT jungle gym from a lost and golden age – Boing Boing AT-AT anatomy tee – Boing Boing Official LEGO Star Wars AT-AT Walker – Boing Boing Gadgets AT-AT meets Mystery Machine – Boing Boing Homemade AT-AT loft bed – Boing Boing AT-AT wedding cake – Boing Boing 3D dino skeleton pancake – Boing Boing Read the rest

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Vice speaker of Ukrainian Parliament throttles deputy

Photo: REUTERS/Tatyana Bondarenko Vice speaker of the Ukrainian parliament, Adam Martynyuk, on the right, throttles deputy Oleg Lyashko during a session in the chamber of the Ukrainian parliament in Kiev on Wednesday, May 18, 2011. According to reports, Lyashko had just asked Martynyuk to let him make a speech, which Martinyuk refused to do on procedural grounds. Lyashko then apparently called his interlocutor a Pharisee, at which point it was on. Martynyuk's impassive, heartbeat-at-60 professionalism is to be admired. Vulcan nerve pinch and ninja movie pressure point manueover? Just imagine the world of hurt Lyashko would have been in if Martynyuk had three hands. UPDATE: Here's video, courtesy of Ukranian TV! Read the rest

Empire Strikes Bike: a Star Wars-themed cruiser

A Skywalker Ranch staffer created "The Empire Strikes Bike," a Star Wars-themed, heavily modded classic cruiser bike with loads of Star Wars tchochkes affixed to it in funny and delightful ways:
Literally created in a residential garage, the frame, wheels, and crank were acquired directly from an official Skywalker Ranch staff bike. From there it was a matter of accessorizing the bare-bones frame and wheels with pieces found on eBay to give it an Empire spin: fenders, chain guard and skirt guards came from various 1940s cruisers, including a J.C. Higgins Colorflow and Monark cruiser; the springer forks were pulled from a 1960s Sears Spaceliner; the tank combined a '60s Roadmaster body with a Hasbro AT-AT head rigged to "fire" its reciprocating chin guns with lights and sound; Master Replicas FX lightsabers were gutted and re-worked to become the headlight (Luke's) and taillight (Vader's) with lights and sound activated by switches on the lightsaber handgrips; the luggage rack was a modified 1982 Kenner Rebel Transport toy, now with swing-back rear to stow gear; a Hasbro Titanium Series Slave I worked nicely as a fender ornament; finally, the chrome Vader handlebar topper was lopped off a giant PEZ dispenser, having the added bonus of built-in light-up eyes, music and dialog from the films. Chrome tail, leather streamers, and torpedo pedals were added for flai
Building the Empire Strikes Bike (via Craft) Read the rest

Wookie the Chew: Star Wars meets Winnie-the-Pooh

"Wookiee the Chew" is James Hance's inspired Winnie-the-Pooh/Star Wars mashup, a series of prints depicting the silly old wookiee and his pal Chrisolo Robin, "in a world where AT-AT's lose their tails and bobaberries are ripe for the picking, join the adventures of the biped of very little brain." It's for sale as a kid's book ("The House at Chew Corner") and a series of prints.

Wookiee the Chew (via Neatorama) Read the rest

Engineering a real-life "Star Wars" AT-AT

At Innovation News Daily, science journalist Jeremy Hsu explores what it would take to make Mike Koehler's AT-AT For America dream a reality.

Making a modern-day robotic walker is not impossible, said Heiko Hoffman, a robotics expert at HRL Laboratories in Malibu, Calif., but it easily could cost $100 million or more.

"[The cost] would likely be much higher for a seriously armored vehicle," Hoffman said of the cost. "If we just build an AT-AT that looks cool, it could be much cheaper."

The AT-AT walker lumbers along like a mechanical elephant, lifting just one foot at a time. That "statically stable" walking style works for a heavy vehicle, because the center of mass always sits above a "triangle" created by keeping three feet on the ground, Hoffman said.

But building a huge 50-foot-tall walker is challenging because structural strength does not increase on par with sheer mass, Hoffman explained. A vehicle 10 times the size of a smaller model might have a supporting beam 10 times larger, but it would have to support a mass 1,000 times greater.

The AT-AT walker also must deal with huge stress on its leg joints, which makes running virtually impossible.

Innovation News Daily: Could America Really Build a "Star Wars" AT-AT Walker? Read the rest

AT-AT for America: restore America's glory with a functional, full-scale Imperial Walker

Mike Koehler dreams of restoring America to greatness. He plans to do this by galvanizing a community of "nerds, makers, geeks, motorheads, sportos, dudes, steampunks, Jedis, halfwits, greasers and geniuses" to build a full-scale, functional Imperial AT-AT Walker. He calls the project AT-AT for America. I think that this plan is at least as good as the one where we gave all that money to those banks who destroyed the planet's economy and then they gave it to their senior execs as performance bonuses.
We were once a country that made things: giantmetal cars, Hoover Dams, non-AutoTuned popular music.

But now we are stuck in an economy in limbo, surrounded by our Internets, our hipsters and our arguing politicians.

Nerds, I have a great idea to make America great again. We can show our brain power, our manufacturing prowess, our organizational skills and our geek-fueled eye for detail.

That idea: an AT-AT for America.

Now I have an idea, but no money and a total lack of mechanical aptitude.

The Dream: An AT-AT for America (via Make) Read the rest
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Exposing the Big Wisconsin Lie about "subsidized public pensions"'s David Cay Johnston exposes the truth behind Wisconsin governor Scott Walker's claim that unionized state workers get their pensions "subsidized" by the state, a claim that has been blindly repeated in the press from the AP to Politifact. This is a carefully argued, well-documented essay from a source that is hardly partisan for labor, and bears close reading.
The fact is that all of the money going into these plans belongs to the workers because it is part of the compensation of the state workers. The fact is that the state workers negotiate their total compensation, which they then divvy up between cash wages, paid vacations, health insurance and, yes, pensions. Since the Wisconsin government workers collectively bargained for their compensation, all of the compensation they have bargained for is part of their pay and thus only the workers contribute to the pension plan. This is an indisputable fact...

Among the reports that failed to scrutinize Gov. Walker' s assertions about state workers' contributions and thus got it wrong is one by A.G. Sulzberger, the presumed future publisher of The New York Times, who is now a national correspondent. He wrote that the Governor "would raise the amount government workers pay into their pension to 5.8 percent of their pay, from less than 1 percent now."

Wrong. The workers currently pay 100 percent from their compensation package, but a portion of it is deducted from their paychecks and a portion of it goes directly to the pension plan.

One correct way to describe this is that the governor "wants to further reduce the cash wages that state workers currently take home in their paychecks." Most state workers already divert 5 percent of their cash wages to the pension plan, an official state website shows.

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AT-AT meets Mystery Machine

"Mystery Machine AT-AT" is one in a series of pop-culture AT-AT redesigns from Seven_Hundred; others in the series include the Dukes of Hazzard's General Lee and Quentin Tarantino's "Pussy Wagon."

Mystery Machine AT-AT (via Boing Boing Flickr Pool)  Boing Boing: Todd Lappin's mystery machine Zombie/Scooby Doo mashup illo - Boing Boing Imperial Scott Walker, the worker-hating AT-AT Destroyer - Boing Boing Secret lives of AT-ATs - Boing Boing Star Wars: Evolution of the AT-AT t-shirt - Boing Boing AT-AT walker made from scrap computer parts - Boing Boing AT-AT jungle gym from a lost and golden age - Boing Boing Read the rest

Scott Walker tricked into spilling his guts to fake Koch brother

The editor of The Buffalo Beast, Ian Murphy, called Wisconsin governor Scott Walker pretending to be billionaire financier David Koch, a major Tea Party financier. Murphy talked for 20 minutes with Walker, during which time Walker revealed that he was considering sending provocateurs to disrupt the protestors fighting his anti-union law. He also reveals a dirty-trick plan to trick Democrats into a procedural trap that would allow his legislation to pass.

They can recess it... the reason for that, we're verifying it this afternoon, legally, we believe, once they've gone into session, they don't physically have to be there. If they're actually in session for that day, and they take a recess, the 19 Senate Republicans could then go into action and they'd have quorum because it's turned out that way. So we're double checking that.If you heard I was going to talk to them that's the only reason why. We'd only do it if they came back to the capitol with all 14 of them. My sense is, hell. I'll talk. If they want to yell at me for an hour, I'm used to that. I can deal with that. But I'm not negotiating.

Fake "Koch brother" calls up Wisconsin governor  Midwestern Tahrir: Workers refuse to leave Wisconsin capital over ... Egyptian orders a pizza for the Wisconsin demonstrators - Boing Boing Imperial Scott Walker, the worker-hating AT-AT Destroyer - Boing Boing Read the rest

Imperial Scott Walker, the worker-hating AT-AT Destroyer

Some disgruntled Wisconsonites have produced this handy visual guide to understanding the imperious approach of Tea Party governor Scott Walker, who handed $137M in tax breaks to the wealthy, declared an emergency budget shortfall of $140M, and decided to cover it by gutting the state's unions.

IMPERIAL WALKER (Thanks, Simulacrumb!)  Midwestern Tahrir: Workers refuse to leave Wisconsin capital over ... Protests in Wisconsin continue - Boing Boing Hey 'dere, Wisconsin! What's democracy look like? - Boing Boing Read the rest

AT-AT walker made from scrap computer parts

Etsy seller TGNsmith's $450, 12-inch AT-AT walker sculpture was built out of recycled computer junk. It's not posable (the joints are welded), but it betrays its origins in delightful ways: "The main body is composed of power supply boxes from old computers, the head from floppy drive housings, legs and feet from various scrap metal. The entire piece has been welded together using the MIG welding process." The bullet scars were simulated by attacking the piece with an arc welder.

Imperial Walker (AT-AT) from recycled computer parts (via Neatorama)  Secret lives of AT-ATs - Boing Boing Star Wars: Evolution of the AT-AT t-shirt - Boing Boing AT-AT raceday Boing Boing Duct-tape and Sharpie AT-AT - Boing Boing AT-AT jungle gym from a lost and golden age - Boing Boing AT-AT anatomy tee - Boing Boing AT-AT wedding cake - Boing Boing At-At Walker Boombox - Boing Boing Read the rest

2010 Gift Guide: BOOKS!

Welcome to the second half of the 2010 Boing Boing Gift Guide, where we pick out some of our favorite books from the last year (and beyond) to help you find inexpensive holiday gifts for friends and family. Can you guess who chose a Sarah Palin book?

What it's like to be a cocaine submarine captain

A former Columbian narco-sub pilot anonymously recounts his life captaining a homebrewed semi-submersible filled with millions of dollars' worth of cocaine, at gunpoint all the while:
At around 8 p.m., the tide was high and the night sufficiently dark as the ocean water tugged at the submersible. A speedboat pulled the vessel out to sea, where the crew started the engines. They accelerated to 12 knots and set off on a 270-degree course heading west, toward the open ocean. The guard provided by the drug mafia for each transport, armed with a revolver and an assault rifle, stood at the door to the engine room. It was incredibly hot in the submersible, where the engines remove oxygen from the air and enrich it with carbon monoxide, despite ventilation pipes. "You constantly feel like you're suffocating," says Alonso. "Every four hours, we reduced the speed from 12 to six knots. Then we opened the hatch in the front for exactly one minute, let some fresh air in and accelerated again."

The four-man team worked in shifts, while Alonso kept monitoring the route. Once they were in the open ocean, the man with the assault rifle gave him a piece of paper showing the target position. Their instructions were to arrive there on a specific day and at a specific time.

Each of the men tried to sleep after his shift, but the stench and the noise on board made this impossible. They had to drink copious amounts of water to make up for the buckets of sweat constantly running off their bodies.

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BoomCases: self-powered amps built into old suitcases

Mr Simo's BoomCases are self-powered amplification systems built into vintage suitcases and briefcases. They run for seven hours on a single charge, and come with a built-in charging plug. Cost is $275 and up, which is steep, but here's a way to be stylish and audiophilic in one go, and they're hand-made by a skilled craftsman besides.

The BoomCase by Mr. Simo (via MeFi) R2-D2 Boom Box, by Bill McMullen Boombox from THE AWESOME FUTURE At-At Walker Boombox Beautiful boombox echoes from within double-bass enclosure - Boing ... Vintage boombox with mini organ Paul Smith's Boombox Briefcase Rare Sharp Boombox with built-in mini-organ Read the rest