Building Blocks II Dec28

Building Blocks II

As I mentioned in a few posts, I save all my cutoffs after big projects.  Instead of sending the scraps to the landfill or fireplace, I like using them to make coasters to toy blocks.  I saved all the best pieces from 2015 to create a huge selection of stacking blocks.  The mahogany, hard...

Rocket Bed Dec25

Rocket Bed

My friend’s son is in love with rockets.  When I was a kid I was all about firetrucks and robots, so I understand his infatuation with heavy machinery.  His dad pitched an idea to me to make a rocket that we could attach to his new Ikea Kura reversible bed: The rocket would have a...

Make: Pop-Up Store Dec20

Make: Pop-Up Store

Just in time for the holiday season, Maker Media opened up a “pop-up” store in downtown San Francisco.  I had the good fortune (and timing) to be in the area for the opening of the retail space on Sutter Street.   Greeting customers the moment they walk in, Makey the...

Installing ESXi on a TS440 Dec17

Installing ESXi on a...

I recently picked up a new server to run VMware’s ESXi, a free type 1 hypervisor.  Here are the steps I went through to get the machine ready to run all those virtual machines. First, download the latest version of ESXi from VMWare’s site.  Note that the download is free but...

ThinkServer TS440 Dec15

ThinkServer TS440

This past Black Friday I splurged on a Lenovo Thinkserver TS440, an affordable 5U tower that’s also very capable.  I purchased a few upgrades at the same time, to include a fast solid state hard drive and dual gigabit NIC.  Here’s a quick rundown of the specs: Intel Xeon E3-1225...

LED Cube II

A few years ago I tried my hand at making my own LED Cube. It was a great way to sharpen my design and soldering skills while creating something visually interesting.  When I was planning the old cube, I got some great advice from a researcher, mathematician and artist named Chris Lomont....

Nakashima Gallery

Situated on a beautiful 9-acre property in New Hope, Pennsylvania, the Nakashima workshop is both on the U.S. National Register of Historic Places and designated as a National Historic Landmark. George Nakashima was an woodworker and architect whose accomplishments in furniture design made...

My Golden Ticket Oct01

My Golden Ticket

Ever since I was a child, I dreamt of being a scientist at MIT – doing science.  Now while I didn’t fully realize my dream, I recently got the chance to tour the Media Lab, MIT’s interdisciplinary research laboratory known for its innovative, imaginative and often...

World Maker Faire 2015 Sep29

World Maker Faire 20...

And just like that, another Maker Faire is in the books.  This World Maker Faire was a bit special – I was on stage as one of the presenters.  Though I wish I had explored a bit more, I had a great time with two of my colleagues in our discussion of makers in support of military...

Making Noise Sep13

Making Noise

I just completed my first musical instrument – a small xylophone.  It was a fun weekend project that didn’t require a lot of calculations or cuts.  The 25 metal bars are courtesy of a kit from Rockler.  They sit on a 1-inch thick slab of of hard maple, which I tapered on my table...

Synesthesia in the L...

Literally meaning “sensations together” in Greek, synesthesia is a very interesting condition where the stimulation of one sense triggers a perception in another.  Those who experience synesthesia might “hear” the color red, or “see” a loud noise. When...

Mad Scientist Googles Aug23

Mad Scientist Google...

… or are they Cyber Googles?  Whatever you want to call them, these things are most likely going to be part of a Halloween costume this year.  The lights are a line of LEDs called Neopixels.  I mounted a Trinket microcontroller and small rechargeable battery in the eye pieces to control...