Cool things

The One Ring Explained. (Lord of the Rings Mythology Part 2) – YouTube

Loved this 🙂


Successful 3D Printed Cranium Implant




What an age we live in. If the image above looks like the entire top of a skull — it’s because it is. Surgeons successfully replaced a 22 year old woman’s cranium with this plastic copy.

We’ve seen small 3D printed transplants before, but nothing as big as this. A 22 year old woman suffered from a very rare disorder in which her skull never stopped growing. While normal skulls are about 1.5cm thick, hers was almost 5cm thick by the time of the surgery. If they left it any longer, the continued bone growth would have eventually killed her.

Until now this surgery has required a hand-made concrete-like implant to replace the removed bone. As you can imagine, it’s hardly an ideal solution. Thanks to continually advancing 3D printing technology, surgeons at the University of Utrecht UMC were able to create an exact copy in a durable and lightweight…

View original post 55 more words

And though the holes were rather small, they had to count them all


A Labor of Like

And though the holes were rather small, they had to count them all

In way, way higher math news, a new study reports that any fool can count as well as an astronomer.

“What we can say is that a random assortment of people with nothing better to do can chart the moon just as well as professional researchers,” Stuart Robbins, professional researcher at the University of Colorado said in a statement.  “I’ve been waiting 5 to 50 years for someone to report that, so I can quit astronomy and go study goat-arousal.  That’s where the big bucks are!”

The finding is a boon for CosmoQuest, a joint venture between Cosmopolitan Magazine and Carquest Auto Parts that has amateurs identify relationship tricks to get your husband to do basic car maintenance.  They also count stuff.

“Put simply, math is hard, and astronomers need all the help they can get!” said Space Barbiecandidate and co-author Pamela Gay, who runs CosmoQuest out of her dream…

View original post 243 more words

Links of the Week March 16-22

A bit late this week, again, but better late than never. I’ve been a bit busy reading Raising Steam, and visiting friends today. Here’s our weekly link roundup, including a free book:


I haven’t seen this yet, and I don’t know if I will. However, I more or less agree with Cooke. I posted about this here but Cooke makes some very valid points.


Foldscope Promises Microscopes for Everyone!




The folks over at PrakashLab at Standford University have come up with an amazingly simple microscope design called the Foldscope, which could make microscopes feasible in even the most remote areas.

The Foldscope is an optical microscope that can be made out of paper and printed components, much like a piece of origami. It can magnify up to 2,000X, costs less than a dollar to manufacture, and can provide a sub-micron resolution of 800nm. It requires no external power, fits in a pocket, and could survive being dropped off the top of a 3 story building!

It takes advantage of new technologies that make it possible to print micro-optics, micro-electronics, micro-flexures, and even micro-fluidics. Just take a look at the following bill of materials and diagram explaining the mechanism.

View original post 50 more words

Hacked Turntable Plays a Tree’s Rings Instead of Records

I agree with the comments…would be nice to have the grooves etched and played through a regular record player rather than the image fed through a midi…still pretty cool. And the music generated sounds like an actual composition!



Here’s another one of those crazy, weird, artsy-style hacks. Somebody decided to see what tree rings sound like by making this rather unorthodox turntable.

All things considered, the cross-section of a tree trunk does kind of resemble a vinyl record. [Bartholomäus Traubeck] noticed this and decided to see what would happen if you could listen to it.

Of course… it’s not quite that simple. When you cut a slice of wood, you’re not leaving any grooves in the rings, so you can’t just throw it on a slightly modified record player. What [Traubeck] had to do was engineer a record player with a Playstation Eye camera strapped to the end of the arm — simple image recognition software creates a signal based on the pattern of the rings, knots, and other imperfections in the wood. This is then filtered into a program called Albeton Live, and converted into a very…

View original post 53 more words

LED Throwies Turn Statues into Heart Attack Risks

Oooh one could have fun with this!



[Mike] has just put a new spin on LED throwies — turning innocent statues into scary possessed demons of the night. He calls them Statueyes, and while it’s not quite vandalism, you might still cause a public disturbance.

If you’re not familiar, magnetic LEDs throwies are a fun little way to add some light to the city at night. They’re a little bit wasteful (sometimes you can’t retrieve them), but so cheap to make it’s sometimes worth it. Depending on what you’re using them for they can open up a whole world of possibilities — like this location tracking augmented reality using IR LED throwies!

Anyway, the main difference with [Mike’s] take on the project is he’s using home-made play-dough which allows him to stick these creepy eyes on non-metallic statues. The Play-Doh in question has an interesting ingredients list: flour, water, salt, vegetable oil and… cream of tarter sauce?…

View original post 39 more words

Links of the week Feb 23-March 1

NASA Photo Shows North Korea Kept in the Dark at Night
This photo is pretty incredible. Not that electricity and lights (or light pollution) are always awesome, but it reminds me of how blessed we are in the west, and of persecuted believers (and non-believers) there who suffer not just because of their faith, but materially.