Mold Making and Casting

I joined the Mold Making class with the Central Oregon Makers last week.  Before going, I had no idea how to make a mold or what I might use it for.  Although 3D printing (“additive manufacturing”) gets most of the attention, mold making and casting seem like useful and versatile tools for duplicating and fabricating …

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Play-i

Play-i is an interesting start-up using robotics to teach programming concepts to children as young as 5 years old.  From the company’s marketing material, here’s the vision: “In starting Play-i, we set out to create the product we want our children to have. Our mission to make computer programming accessible for every child is bigger …

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Living Computer Museum

The Living Computer Museum opened October 2012 in Seattle, WA.  Unlike most museums that strive to preserve artifacts how they find them, usually broken and powered off, this museum keeps their machines alive.  They’re in working condition, complete with the strangely beautiful sounds of teletypes, Disk ][ drives, paper tape, and raised-floor cooling.  The museum …

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KansasFest 2013

KansasFest came and went in a flurry of sleepless excitement.  Among other things, we had a great keynote from Randy Wigginton, a surprise visit from Mr. Wozniak, and an Apple I.  I particularly enjoyed seeing the amazing, creative, and unbelievable things people are doing with their Apple IIs.        

Talkin’ about LocalTalk

Compared to today, computer networking in 1984 was heterogeneous, and compatibility between two systems from different vendors was unlikely.  Every vendor developed their own proprietary and incompatible solution to networking, including file sharing and print sharing.  Apple joined the foray with AppleTalk, a low cost and easy to operate networking system, with an announcement in …

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High-Low Tech

One of the advantages of traveling is finding the “best of the best” and not being restricted to one city.  Of course, it’s never easy finding the best stuff and having it match my travel schedule.  Yesterday, I attended the “Drawing the Electric Synth with Sam Jacoby from MIT” class at SparkFun Electronics in Boulder, …

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Alan Kay on modern computers

David Greelish recently posted an interesting interview with Alan Kay, a visionary behind the modern graphical user interface.  Interestingly, Kay argues that modern computers fall far short of the original vision and potential. For all media, the original intent was “symmetric authoring and consuming”. So much of our culture is about consumption.  In some ways, …

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