Yong Chen and his team at USC Engineering have built a six-axis-of-freedom 3D printer that can rotate its build platform and heads to enable it to print on irregular, curved and slanted surfaces; shown here, a 3D print on a curved bottle.
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Anand Lai Shimpi and Brian Klug trace the tricks used by electronics giants to bamboozle benchmarking apps
--a practice widely associated with Samsung, but also used by at least some of its competitors. At The Observer,
Charles Arthur suggests that it's time to stop trusting benchmarking apps altogether
. — Rob
Spocko sez, "It's nice to know that some companies understand that non-essential federal employees are people too, with needs and wants and not robots that can be shut off with a switch.
Thankfully Vibrators.com understands and is giving away free vibrators to Federal Employees during the government shutdown.
They are giving away 200 a day. Simply enter the coupon code. 'IAmAFederalEmployee'"
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Infinite Crypt, a Kickstarter project aiming to raise £6,000, is a system for building relatively cheap tabletop RPG terrain in quantity, using snap-together, laser-cut materials.
The pieces are architecturally ambitious and the accompanying photos show how great they look when painted. I don't buy a lot of RPG terrain stuff, so I can't really tell if £59 is a cheap price for the materials to build "a large room, a colonnade or a key intersection." But what's immediately obvious is that these pieces are gorgeous and well-designed, and that the project itself has pretty modest and sensible goals -- give us money to buy a laser. More money? We'll buy another laser. More money? We'll make more stuff.
As with all crowdfunded projects, you should be prepared for the eventuality that nothing will come of it, and you'll lose your money. That said, project founder James Wallbank runs a successful hackspace in Sheffield, and seems to be a together sort of dude. So caveat emptor, but also, FWOAR.
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Today's Klockwerks newsletter brought Roger Wood's latest lunatic bell-jar timepiece. It's exceptional, even by his high standards.
The Garmin Head-Up Display is a $150 gadget that connects to your mobile phone via Bluetooth and projects navigation information onto your windshield. I want one - I use my iPhone for navigation and I don't like picking it up and looking at the display while I drive.
Garmin Head-Up Display (HUD) Dashboard Mounted Windshield Projector
From Tinneddesires's tumblr: a meticulously deconstructed, knolled Torpedo typewriter.
My old Torpedo typewriter needed a cleaning
(via Things Organized Neatly)
Steven Levy on a $130 talking smoke detector
Nest Protect also knows when a warning isn’t necessary. By analyzing sensor data (things like smoke, heat, and carbon monoxide levels), the system determines whether a situation is something to be concerned about. Eventually, having users specify where in the house the device will be installed could play into it too. If a unit is in the bathroom, its sensors could understand that the steam from a shower isn’t anything to warn people about. The devices have the capability now, but Nest has to wait on regulatory changes to activate them. And because Nest devices are connected to each other by Wi-Fi, the voice can also tell you where danger lies. If there’s a problem in the kids’ bedroom, every device in the house will tell you just that.
It's easy to approach this with a wary eye -- a thermostat is real chore to install and Nest's smarter replacement can save a homeowner serious money, whereas a smoke detector is $5 and you can just slap it on the ceiling. When you factor in false "burned toast" positives, the hassle of tracking down whichever one is chirping incessantly, and the fact that these guys are making nice versions of ugly-but-ubiquitous household appliances, maybe? I feel like their gameplan, ultimately, must be to fix the maddening, wallwart-carbuncled, powerstrip-knotted household power distribution situation.
Sold! I love it. A breath of fresh air in a sea of MacBook clones, from the company responsible for half of them. How about a Windows model in similar vein, HP?
Meet the new HP Chromebook11 – an ultra-portable Chromebook made in close collaboration with Google. Inspired by the Pixel’s iconic design at an affordable $279.99(estimated street price), it’s made for everyone. The HP Chromebook11 is the first affordable Chromebook with a brilliant IPS display and first Chromebook ever to use USB charging. The 11.6-inch diagonal IPS screen provides clear images and a wide 176-degree viewing angle, making it easy to share your screen. With USB charging, you can use the same charger to charge your Android phone or tablet.
HP Chromebook11: Made with Google [HP]
Elizabeth Perez's concept design for an edition of Ray Bradbury's Fahrenheit 451 features a strike-anywhere match set into the cover and a screen-printed striking surface on the spine, so you can use the book to set fire to itself. This Fahrenheit 451 design would make a great accompaniment to the asbestos-bound first edition.
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A one-off to be sold at auction in November, the proceeds will go to AIDS, TB and malaria charities. Since the Leica M costs $7k in its normal incarnation, heaven knows what a special edition, cut by two designers so good they each received knighthoods, will go for! [Wired]
Looks kinda like a cheap bluetooth speaker.
Starting with the Zip, in 1913. I'm always a sucker for a gallery of classic gadgets. [Mail]
Joris sez, "I interviewed Marek Senický about his Filamaker today. The device is a grinder and filament extruder that recycles waste plastic and turns old unwanted 3D prints into new ones.
I think its amazing and will greatly reduce the cost of 3D printing. Effectively to zero if waste is used [Ed: that's artistic license -- I'm sure Joris is familiar with the second law of thermodynamics]. It will also make 3D printing much greener."
I wrote about Filabot, a competitor of Filamaker, last January. Joris explains the difference: "Filamaker has a grinder and extruder. So it grinds up old 3D prints and turns them into filament. It can also grind up ABS waste products and turn those into filament. So you take any old ABS item and grind it and filament pops out.
The Filabot is only an extruder that takes pellets and turns them into filament."
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Etsy seller Beadedmischka sells this death's head hawkmoth beaded brooch for $75. The beads are Japanese Toho and Miyuki Delica; the skull is glass.
Bead Embroidered Brooch Death's-head Hawkmoth
Wildcat is a fast-sprinting, 16MPH Boston Dynamics robot whose gallop is a precision joy to behold.
Boston Dynamics is often featured here for its amazing robots: the humanoid Petman; the zippy Cheetah; the high-jumping Urban Hopper; the pole-climbing Rise; and the pack-slinging BigDog.