[Video Link: YouTube, PBS.org]
I traveled to Japan with PBS NewsHour science correspondent Miles O'Brien to help shoot and produce a series of NewsHour stories about the aftermath of the March 11 earthquake, tsunami, and nuclear disasters. One of these just aired, and is above. It's the story of how a group of hackers and internet folks are working with Japanese volunteers to harness DIY technology to record and share data about radiation hotspots.
We traveled with Safecast on a radiation-data-gathering drive from Tokyo to inside the voluntary evacuation zone, close to the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant. We monitored readings on the ground and in the air with the Safecast team all along the way. You'll see what those contamination levels were, and what and whom we encountered, in this video.
Some of the voices in this piece are familiar names to regular Boing Boing readers: Joi Ito, Sean Bonner, and others. One DIY/Maker/hacker culture hero we interviewed whose work you see is Bunnie Huang (I was thrilled that this project allowed me to meet Bunnie in person for the first time).
In the NewsHour story, airing exactly eight months to the day after the March 11 disaster, you'll see the geiger counters the Safecast team have developed with Sebastopol, California-based Dan Sythe and International Medcom. The successor to the "B-Geigie" Safecast is using now will be a device Bunnie designed (which looks really elegant, by the way). Oh, and these geiger kits were assembled in the very cool Tokyo Hacker Space, a central site for the Safecast movement.
LINKS: PBS NewsHour site, with transcript. Don't miss this conversation with Miles and NewsHour Host Hari Sreenivasan, the day after we came back to Tokyo from the Fukushima drive. And here's a related story about the abandoned pets we encountered there.
Here's a related post on Safecast.org, and here's Sean Bonner's original drive report from our trip together.
(Photos in this post: iPhone snapshots by Xeni Jardin.)
Russian artist Roman Booteen modifies coins with incredible engravings and feats of mechanical engineering. This coin features a beating heart. Other exquisite examples of his work are below. He also customizes Zippo lighters. (via Kottke) View this post on Instagram #hobonickel #goldinlay #morgandollar #engraved #engravedcoin #hobonickel #hobonickels A post shared by Roman Booteen (@romanbooteen) on […]
David Schneider built his own radio telescope out of roof flashing, an empty paint thinner can, a free software-defined radio app, USB receiver, and a length of coaxial cable. The whole project cost him less than $150 and he’s already used it to detect galactic hydrogen and monitor the motion of our Milky Way galaxy’s […]
Our friend Donald Bell put together an excellent little tour of some of the game designs from the alt.ctrl showcase at last week’s Game Developers Conference in San Francisco. And here’s a handy link list that Donald provides to the game projects covered: HELLCOUCH: A Couch Co-op Game (Carol Mertz, Francesca Carletto-Leon) Continuum Bacterium (HNRY) […]
Photoshop is one of the most widely used photo editing tools out there, to the point that it’s the default program designers think of whenever they need work done. Small wonder, too: The flagship software in Adobe’s creative suite is very powerful — if you know how to use it. There is a lot to […]
Bamboo fiber is a relatively new thing in luxury fabrics, but it’s no surprise it’s this snuggly. After all, pandas eat bamboo, and they constantly look comfortable. But seriously: To understand the benefits of real bamboo sheets, you have to spend a night on them. This 4-Piece Luxury 100% Rayon Bamboo Sheet Set is a […]
No chef’s arsenal is complete without a good set of knives. In fact, it’s the first big sign that you’re ready to start cooking meals as opposed to just warming them up. Here are 20 knife sets that any chef would be proud to own, from visually stunning old-world metallurgy to sleek modern cutlery. Mini […]