Computationally derived Sisyphus Lego automata has to push his ball forever and ever

JK Brickworks's Sisyphus automata was inspired by Disney Research's work on the "Computational Design of Mechanical Characters".

There's a parts-list and build-guide if you want to make your own. The detail is spectacular, down to the frescoes on the plinth.

A couple of months ago someone pointed me to this fascinating video from Disney Research – Computational Design of Mechanical Characters. It's full of some amazing character models featuring realistic motion, all achieved using mechanical links and gears. Of course I was immediately inspired to build my own version of the Sisyphus model out of LEGO parts. I definitely wanted to add my own touch to it though and, in addition to tweaking the geometry a little, I decided to add a boulder and extend the motion to it as well.

You can see the results in the video below, where I also discuss the details of the mechanics. I have also put together building instructions for the core model, which you can find after the video, along with some more photos of the model.

Sisyphus Kinetic Sculpture
[Jason/JK Brickworks]

(via Colossal)