Tuesday, November 18, 2014


Michael (HaveBlue) sent this video to me. Inspiring...

Monday, November 17, 2014

radial vw

wonder if this could make my beetle fly...

Sunday, November 16, 2014

dcrl visit: sfrobotics

Mr. Peter Graven is a science teacher in St. Francis, WI. He had taken a tour of my lab this past summer and so he recently reached out to me to inquire about making a Cyborg Beast. His students were working (over their lunch hour) on creating a hand for a four year old girl in California via e-NABLE and they were looking for some information on how to do assembly as well as any tips I might have on printing  We talked about a Skype session to help answer some immediate questions and I informed Peter that I was more than willing to have everyone up to the Digital Craft Research Lab if they so desired. 

Last week Mr. Graven's group visited and I was able to spend some time discussing some of the tools we use to create work in the DCRL as well as perform a couple of demonstrations on using CAD software to design and build things. I have many groups of prospectives students visit the lab each year and I would say that this was one of the best groups I have had visit. Each student was engaged and respectful. It was great to be able to share some time with Mr. Graven's eager students and I can't wait to see how this journey will impact their future. I received a very kind message from one of the students later on Friday night; I could tell he was super excited by what he had experienced  It's amazing how this work has inspired so many people to become active in helping others. Spread the word and get involved!

You can check out their progress here.

e-NABLE: hand sizing

As many of you who read this blog know, the work that I have been fortunate to participate in with e-NABLE and 3D printed prosthetics has been personally rewarding and dear to my heart. Just when I think that I have things figured out and that I won't be able to see new outcomes arise out of this project... I am broadsided by another potential avenue to get others involved in sharing their time and abilities. It seems that with each new step something unexpected and heart warming develops from this work. 

As of late, I have had the opportunity to meet many young people as well as teachers who are involved in volunteering to create e-NABLE hands for children in need. The creation of a printed hand is the perfect educational experience that combines science and design with community engagement. I have seen a rise in the number of teachers interested in providing learning opportunities that engage applied learning through "making". Of course STEAM and STEM programs characterizes the kinds of activities that administrators are currently interested in and the e-NABLE projects directly feed into these programs. Those of us who remember Art, Music, and Industrial Arts programs from long ago, have known the benefit of these applied learning methods for some time. Regardless of what these programs are called, these experiences are sure to impact students' learning and I am sure that the impact upon their souls will be far reaching beyond the classroom and their time as a student. 

As I mentioned in an earlier post, I have been consulting with a few different schools on the creation of hands. I typically get many questions about sizing a hand or checking hand size (from Handomatic files) against the images that we receive when we decide to volunteer to create a hand. Just last week I presented information to two different teachers from two different schools from Wisconsin and Maryland via my lab and Skype. Both teachers thought it was very helpful to share this information with students so I decided to make a simple video that will assist teachers in the classroom. I have a full resolution video that I can post on Dropbox if people need better quality video (just send me an email). This video outlines the CAD program I use along with how to scale .stl hand components against a hand photo. I do not intend to push Rhino as I have no affiliation with the software developers (I just think it is an easy program to use and learn).

I will, however, apologize for my pour speech delivery and lack of comfort in presenting this information. There is just something that is a little uncomfortable about knowing that I'm recoding myself as I speak to my desktop. 

Saturday, November 15, 2014

Wednesday, November 12, 2014