Design · Performativity

Sawyer: DIY Bicycle

Dutch designer Jurgen Kuipers projected Sawyer , a bicycle with a lowrider geometry. The frame is constructed out of Plywood. Constructed from a custom made beech plywood frame paired with several different wooden panels, this bike actually comes packaged the same way a model car kit would allowing the user to build out the bike piece by piece. Included in the kit is a 1:1 scale model, giving the user the option to use or not use the mechanical components of the bicycle. Definitely an interesting concept to say the least. Via Feeldesain

Design · Photographics · Public Space

Bastard chairs

BASTARD CHAIRS BY Michael Wolf. The bastard chairs of china from the book “Sitting in China” published by Steidl in the fall of 2002, distributed by D.A.P. in the United States.

Performativity · Projects · Technology

How to Build a Flying Saucer

At the end of the nineteenth century, the most distinguished scientists and engineers declared that no known combination of materials and locomotion could be assembled into a practical flying machine. Fifty years later another generation of distinguished scientists and engineers declared that it was technologically infeasible for a rocket ship to reach the moon. Nevertheless, men were getting off the ground and out into space even while these words were uttered.

In the last half of the twentieth century, when technology is advancing faster than reports can reach the public, it is fashionable to hold the pronouncements of yesterday’s experts to ridicule. But there is something anomalous about the consistency with which eminent authorities fail to recognize technological advances even while they are being made. You must bear in mind that these men are not given to making public pronouncements in haste; their conclusions are reached after exhaustive calculations and proofs, and they are better informed about their subject than anyone else alive. But by and large, revolutionary advances in technology do not contribute to the advantage of established experts, so they tend to believe that the challenge cannot possibly be realized.

Excerpt of “How to Build a Flying Saucer After So Many Amateurs Have Failed: An essay in Speculative Engineering” by T. B. P. Continue reading HERE

Recently declassified records from the Aeronautical Systems Division, USAF (RG 342 – Records of United States Air Force Commands, Activities, and Organizations) reveal some surprising, perhaps never-before-seen images.

Via Michael Rhodes at NDC Blog

The Avrocar S/N 58-7055 (marked AV-7055) on its rollout.

The Avro Canada VZ-9 Avrocar was a VTOL aircraft developed by Avro Aircraft Ltd. (Canada) as part of a secret U.S. military project carried out in the early years of the Cold War. The Avrocar intended to exploit the Coandă effect to provide lift and thrust from a single “turborotor” blowing exhaust out the rim of the disk-shaped aircraft to provide anticipated VTOL-like performance. In the air, it would have resembled a flying saucer.

Originally designed as a fighter-like aircraft capable of very high speeds and altitudes, the project was repeatedly scaled back over time and the US Air Force eventually abandoned it. Development was then taken up by the US Army for a tactical combat aircraft requirement, a sort of high-performance helicopter. In flight testing, the Avrocar proved to have unresolved thrust and stability problems that limited it to a degraded, low-performance flight envelope; subsequently, the project was cancelled in September 1961.

Through the history of the program, the project was referred to by a number of different names. Avro referred to the efforts as Project Y, with individual vehicles known as Spade and Omega. Project Y-2 was later funded by the US Air Force, who referred to it as WS-606A, Project 1794 and Project Silver Bug. When the Army joined the efforts it took on its final name “Avrocar”, and the designation “VZ-9”, part of the US Army’s VTOL projects in the VZ series.

Text via Wiki. Continue reading HERE

Public Space · Sonic/Musical

InMono, the public sound-amplifier

InMono is a small sound-amplifier generating soundwaves from vibrations naturally occurring in public objects. The project aims to let people tune into their surroundings in a new way.

Architectonic · Design · Human-ities · Public Space · Social/Politics


The Institute of Placemaking is a knowledge exchange center and public institution that gives spatial possibilities to people who desire a place for new ideas and new encounters within the city.

An office-cabin and a table are the simple architectural elements around which workshops, dinners and collective gatherings happen. The Institute acts as an infrastructure that ‘grows’ through a series of curated workshops dealing with public action and experimentation with do-it-yourself methods of production, which extends to building, making, cooking, using and re-using. Workshops are focused around the looped system of resources, and particular attention is paid to what is commonly neglected in the production cycle of materials or goods: waste. We will be hosting six public workshops together with local citizens and festival participants: Build Your Own Solar Cooker, Do-It-Yourself Marmelade Workshop, Soap Opera: Making Soap from Scratch, Solar Cooker Tester + Taste Test, and Remade Furniture Workshop.

Text and Image via EME3

Institute of Placemaking KICKSTARTER

Art/Aesthetics · Book-Text-Read-Zines · Design · Sculpt/Install · Technology

A Touch of Code: Interactive Installations and Experiences

Gestalten Books: Thanks to the omnipresence of computers, cell phones, gaming systems, and the internet, a broad audience has traded its past reservations against technology for an almost insatiable curiosity for all things technical. Against this background, unprecedented new tools and possibilities are opening up for the world of design. In addition to sketchbooks and computers, young designers are increasingly using programming languages, soldering irons, sensors, and microprocessors as well as 3D milling or rapid prototyping machines in their work. The innovative use of powerful hardware and software has become affordable and, most of all, much easier to use. Today, the sky is the limit when it comes to ideas for experimental media, unconventional interfaces, and interactive spatial experiences.

A Touch of Code shows how information becomes experience. The book examines how surprising personal experiences are created where virtual realms meet the real world and where dataflow confronts the human senses. It presents an international spectrum of interdisciplinary projects at the intersection of laboratory, trade show, and urban space that play with the new frontiers of perception, interaction, and staging created by current technology. These include brand and product presentations as well as thematic exhibits, architecture, art, and design.

The comprehensive spectrum of innovative spatial and interactive work in A Touch of Code reveals how technology is fundamentally changing and expanding strategies for the targeted use of architecture, art, communication, and design for the future.

A Touch of Code

Design · Education · Games/Play · Performativity · Projects · Science · Sculpt/Install · Videos

Meet Arvind Gupta and his Toys from “Trash”

Arvind Gupta is an Indian toy inventor that popularizes science. His series of films by Arvind Gupta Toys is absolutely wonderful.


Books on Education from Arvind Gupta

Book-Text-Read-Zines · Design · Fashion · Social/Politics


What happens if a designer within the world of fashion encourages political activism? Otto von Busch describes a designer role that experiments with how fashion can be reverse engineered, hacked, tuned and shared among many participants as a form of social activism. On Friday October 24th 2008 he defends his thesis at the School of Design and Crafts, University of Gothenburg.

Otto von Busch’s thesis, with the title ”Fashion-able: Hacktivism and Engaged Fashion Design”, consists of a series of extensive projects from fashion which aim to explore a new designer role for fashion. A role that experiments with how fashion can be reverse engineered, hacked, tuned and shared among many participants as a form of social activism.

This social design practice can be called “the hacktivism of fashion”, an engaged and collective process of enablement, creative resistance and DIY practice, where a community share methods and experiences on how to expand action spaces and develop new forms of craftsmanship.

Download PDF HERE

Text via HDK-School of Design and Crafts

Design · Digital Media · Performativity · Sculpt/Install · Sonic/Musical · Technology

Meet Gijs Gieskes

Gijs Gieskes is a sonic artist/craftsman/circuit-bender/electrician/digi-magician/industrial designer/educator among other things. As you travel through his website, you will find how wonderfully generous and transparent he is about his process and work. Bellow you will find some audio visual samples of his work.


Analog Hard Disk 2

Cappuccino Synth

Image Scan Sequencer

Test_Lab: Audio_Objects (2007); Photo by Jan Sprij

Earthly/Geo/Astro · Performativity · Technology · Videos

Lego Space Shuttle Boldly Goes Where No Tiny Plastic Ship Has Gone Before

Raul Oaida (from Romania) and his LEGO tribute to the end of the space shuttle era. Proving that although retired, this machine can still fly, albeit in toy form.

The launch took place from central Germany (easy flight clearance) and reached a max altitude of 35000m. A 1600g meteo balloon filled with helium was used alongside a GoPro Hero, Spot GPS and of course Lego Space Shuttle model 3367.

Read Full Story HERE. Via Explore

Grassroots Cartography with Balloons and Kites

Earthly/Geo/Astro · Education · Film/Video/New Media · Photographics · Public Space · Technology

Grassroots Cartography with Ballons and Kites


This tool is being developed to provide a low cost, easy to use, and a safe method for making aerial image maps. Over the last two years, we’ve build a global community of mappers who are engaged in discussion around the development and use of these tools. Normally aerial image maps are made from satellites and airplanes. This activity introduces easy methods for making on-demand image maps. Our community is particularly interested in applying this to civic and environmental issues.
Applications and example uses

Residents of the Gulf Coast are using balloons and kites to produce their own aerial imagery of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill… documentation that will be essential for environmental and legal use in coming years. We believe in complete open access to spill imagery and are releasing all imagery from the oil spill mapping project into the public domain. Browse maps and data from the Gulf Coast in the Public Laboratory Archive

How to make your own

at least 1000 ft of string on a spool
a cheap digital camera with “continuous mode”
a balloon or kite
a rubber band
tape & scissors
leather or cloth gloves

How to use it

The illustrated guide includes lots of tips for a successful flight; print it and bring it with you!
Be sure to review the Balloon Mapping Regulations for the US, or the equivalent wherever you are planning to map.
Try to launch your balloon to at least 1000 ft for a good compromise of high resolution vs. large area.
Stay away from power lines, airports, and traffic.

Source: Public Laboratory. More info and download material HERE

An example without the mapping: iPad Survives 100,000+ Foot Fall From Space Near Area 51.