Why put magnetic paint on ants?

Messing with ants for fun (and scientific profit)

Push button, receive pancake

Because the human brain is easily impressed with gadgetry, I give you an automatic pancake-making machine—as photographed by my friend Shav, who received his breakfast from it this morning.

A similar system showed up on Engadget back in 2009. That model cost $3500 and could produce pancakes, bag-of-batter to golden deliciousness, at a rate of 200 per hour.

Thanks to Keith for finding the Engadget link!

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Behind the scenes of making silly musical thank you notes


I'm in New York this week and today I dropped in on Boing Boing pal and co-curator of Boing Boing's Virgin America in-flight channel Joe Sabia. Joe's in the middle of directing a series of short musical thank you note videos for people who request them online as a promotional campaign for AT&T's Facebook fan page. They're short and sweet, but I was surprised by how much there is going on behind the scenes here.

These guys are making about 30 videos an hour, it's a pretty impressive production line. Netziens request a song through a form on AT&T's Facebook page, then the staff here reads through them all and writes them on whiteboards for the band to perform in the sound booth. The music is prepared in advance with a few different variations, and the lyrics are all ad libbed by UCB comedians. Immediately afterwards, the videos are edited together and uploaded to YouTube. There are about forty people in the whole production line. Yesterday they made about two hundred videos, and today they'll probably make three hundred more. Silly songs are serious business!

They'll be making videos for a few more hours, so send one in if you want them to make one for you. Thanks Joe! Read the rest