Boing Boing 

Mesmerizing rebuild of a mechanical Fourier calculator

Albert Michelson's harmonic analyzer -- a 19th century mechanical calculator that can do Fourier analysis with just gears, springs and levers -- was found at the University of Illinois, and then lovingly restored by a trio of makers who lavishly documented it in a book (free PDF/paperback/hardcover) and a mesmerizing video series.

Albert Michelson's Harmonic Analyzer: A Visual Tour of a Nineteenth Century Machine that Performs Fourier Analysis [Book]

Albert Michelson's Harmonic Analyzer [Youtube]

Albert Michelson's Harmonic Analyzer (book details) [Free PDF]

(via JWZ)

Band releases unplayable glass-master disc with entire catalog


Claire from the band Yacht sends us their newest project, Where Does This Disco?: "Among other things, it's a clear unplayable CD (without foil) containing our entire musical catalogue. It's also a microsite built to explain what it's like to be a band trying to design and sell physical media in an age where compact discs are both obsolete and still somehow ubiquitous."

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X-Wing Fighter knife-block


Thinkgeek's $100 X-Wing Fighter knife-block comes with five kitchen knives of unknown quality (my guess is fair-to-middling, but they sure are shiny) and is a striking (if potenitally dangerous) way to display your kitchenware.

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Zombie book-ends


Thinkgeek's $20 Zombie Bookends are reminiscent of the Knob Creek Metal Arts line, but are less than one third of the price (though Knob Creek has much better sight-gags).

Gadgets Giveaway: DaVinci Ascent Vaporizer!

This week, Mark and Xeni discuss their dueling carry-on bag picks and other travel faves, as well as this week's gadget giveaway — the Ascent Vaporizer by DaVinci. Enter to win by Nov. 17! Read the rest

Gerber's money clip/utility knife


I've used a money-clip for years as an alternative to a wallet, and the idea of having a small, sharp blade (Gerber makes great tools!) built into it is immensely appealing, especially given the copious positive reviews for Gerber's $19.26 version (but I worry that I'd forget it and lose it to a TSA checkpoint).

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Beautiful, detailed photos of mechanical calculators' guts


San Francisco photographer Kevin Twomey shot an amazing gallery of images of the inner workings of a large collection of mechanical calculating machines from the collection of Mark Glusker, stitching together multiple images to ensure that every rod, gear and linkage was vividly rendered.

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The new Nexus lineup is weak

Rob Pegoraro feels like he's playing with someone else's hobby rather than using serious handsetsRead the rest

Detailed, handmade gamer soaps


Chrystal "Digital Soaps" Doucette makes soap in the form of detailed replicas of gaming gear and tropes: Minecraft creepers, NES cartridges, N64 cartridges, Xbox controllers, Mountain Dew shampoo, Gameboy cartridges and more. (via Geeky Merch)

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3D printed T-Rex shower head


JM Schwartz's 3D printable T-Rex shower head is just about the best thing I've seen all week. It's a mashup of a T-Rex skull produced by Makerbot Academy and Schwartz's own shower-head design.

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Back to the Future Delorean dashboard phone-case


The Back to the Future Delorean dashboard phone-case ($16.26) fits most recent smartphones, and the image is transferred using 3D vacuum printing to produce a wraparound effect. (via Geeky Merch)

Replica bone-blade from Supernatural


Danielle and Kate, in Ridgefield, NJ, make and sell replica game and movie props, like this resin-cast, hand-painted, leather-wrapped bone blade from Supernatural (13.75", $120) -- also noteworthy is the Iron Man EVA Foam Gloves ($50). (via Geeky Merch)

Gadgets 018: Stovetop espresso maker, Seinfeld trick calendar generator, speed reading and more

This week, Mark is joined by Dean Putney to discuss the Bialetti Stovetop Espresso Maker and Coleman Water Carrier, as well as share their favorite gadgets to inspire productivity. Read the rest

The Raven's Chamber: a mad scientist's apparatus


Art Donovan (previously) created this amazing, mixed-media sculpture as a commission, called The Raven's Chamber, resembling some arcane astronomical instrument from a mad alchemist's lab.

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Chip-and-PIN cards let nearby fraudsters steal $1M at a time

Visa's new Paywave chip-and-PIN credit-cards have a $1M limit on foreign-currency transactions that can be verified "in-card," meaning that someone who gets close enough to your UK wallet can simply wave a phone at it and charge a megabuck to it without raising any realtime security alerts.

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Geared necklace from the geared ring people

Brother-and-sister designers Rachel and Glen Liberman, creators of the amazing Kinekt gear-ring, have created a matching stainless steel geared necklace whose chain passes through a set of meshing gears, spinning them round and round.

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Kindle Original vs Kindle Voyage

Jason Weisberger finally upgraded. Did seven years make much difference? The answer will probably not surprise you, but the details might.Read the rest

Kickstarting an open hardware SLR networking add-on


Danny sez, "Lumera is an open-hardware, open source prototype that plugs into your fancy SLR camera, connects to your phone via WiFi or Bluetooth, and lets you automatically upload pictures to sites like Flickr or a USB backup, change your camera settings like focus or ISO settings, or run timelapsed photograph sessions."

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Gadgets: 3-in-1 multi-cooker, magician's card press, iPhone 6 Plus

Listen to Mark, Xeni and Jason talk about what's cooking with their favorite gadgets in and out of the kitchen. Read the rest

Mold for producing skull-shaped hard-boiled eggs


Thinkgeek's Egg-o-matic Skull Egg Mold, $10, will take your boiled eggs and mold them into skulls as they cool, so that you can serve them as ghastly breakfast treats.

Werewolf zombie wall-trophy


Thinkgeek's Werewolf Zombie Trophy ($35) is made from hand-painted resin and is 5.5"x7.5"x4.5" -- just the thing for showing off your monster-slaying prowess. I mean, anyone can kill a zombie. Or a werewolf. But a werewolf zombie? That's some shootin', Tex.

Pocket-sized travel-laundry gadget


The Scrubba is a washtub, washboard, soaker and dry-rack that collapses down and fits in your pocket, and can also serve as a drybag for camping trips.

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Which crowdfunded privacy routers are worthy of your trust?


After the spectacular rise and fall of Anonabox, a kickstarted $45 router that was supposed to protect your privacy but had its campaign yanked for not being entirely forthright with backers, a spate of shady, silly, and even serious projects have sprung up to fill the demand that Anonabox's $615,000 Kickstarter near-win demonstrated.

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Smog Rings vs. Quisp Meteorite Ring

A Dutch artist plans to make a ring out of compressed Chinese smog, which is even cooler than the Quisp meteorite ring which came in boxes of the cereal in the 1960s. By Mark FrauenfelderRead the rest

Dyson Humidifier

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The pitch: it kills bacteria, instead of breeding it, and adjusts automatically to maintain a specific relative humidity in the room. Also, it looks cool.

Beautiful junkbot rayguns


By Roger Wood/Klockwerks

XKCD watch-face for Moto 360


Spam writes, "I'm a fan of XKCD and so I decided to put together a watchface for the Moto 360 based on xkcd.com/now because I really like Randall Munroe's concept for a simple world clock."

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If you don't agree to the new Wii U EULA, Nintendo will kill-switch it

When you bought your Wii U, it came with one set of terms-of-service; now they've changed, and if you don't accept the changes, your Wii seizes up and won't work. That's not exactly what we think of when we hear the word "agreement."

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LISTEN: Travel gadgets for your next trip

This week, Xeni, Mark and Jason talk TSA-friendly backpacks, aromatherapy to help you sleep, and two travel must-haves for your phablet and vehicle batteries. Read the rest