I’m going to be doing a couple of mini photo workshops focused on taking product photos outdoors. The first session will be at 5pm, and will focus on using the sun as a light source. The second session, at 8pm, will use artificial light. Both sessions will discuss using reflectors, camera set up and use, and lots of other neat tricks.
After the shooting demos, I’ll be doing Q&A. If you have any questions about the photo tutorial, or photography in general, feel free to come on by and ask.
Government agents can sneak onto your property in the middle of the night, put a GPS device on the bottom of your car and keep track of everywhere you go. This doesn’t violate your Fourth Amendment rights, because you do not have any reasonable expectation of privacy in your own driveway — and no reasonable expectation that the government isn’t tracking your movements.
That is the bizarre — and scary — rule that now applies in California and eight other Western states. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, which covers this vast jurisdiction, recently decided the government can monitor you in this way virtually anytime it wants — with no need for a search warrant.
It is a dangerous decision — one that, as the dissenting judges warned, could turn America into the sort of totalitarian state imagined by George Orwell. It is particularly offensive because the judges added insult to injury with some shocking class bias: the little personal privacy that still exists, the court suggested, should belong mainly to the rich.
…Chief Judge Alex Kozinski, who dissented from this month’s decision refusing to reconsider the case, pointed out whose homes are not open to strangers: rich people’s. The court’s ruling, he said, means that people who protect their homes with electric gates, fences and security booths have a large protected zone of privacy around their homes. People who cannot afford such barriers have to put up with the government sneaking around at night.
We think this will also increase the GPS jammer market (above google search) – and perhaps some will just build their own.
For the Duel nature sculpure, I wanted to have a ‘breathing’ pattern where all the LEDs vary in brightness in a natural/organic way. A good example is the ‘sleep indicator’ LED on recent Macs/Powerbooks. (There’s even a patent!) The problem is that, while the patent claims its a simple sinusoid (see the patent for the image), programming in a sinusoid doesn’t look nearly as good. So I decided to get the real waveform with a kludgy reverse engineering attempt:
I used a MIDIsense instead of a simple voltage divider because I want to extract the absolute LED brightness pattern and a photocell voltage divider acts ‘inversely’ (well, 1/R) instead of linearly (ie, just R). (The MIDIsense has an opamp to linearize the resistive sensor output)
There it is! There is a bit of ‘noise’ on the peaks because I’m picking up some of the PWM artifacts through the diffused white plastic.
Wow. Y’all are awesome! I can’t believe the level of customer service you provide. I told my friends about your store and they have since ordered from you and had great experiences also. Thanks again – H.
Engineer Andy Barry has created a new budget open source 3D scanner. He calls it the MakerScanner and hopes to sell it through the MakerBot web site for around $200. It uses the same laser line, offset webcam than many other systems use. He does a good job of explaining on the MakerScanner.com web site. There are even more details on his web site and Thingiverse.
The system uses galvanometers to move a mirror which moves the laser line. A sine wave is output to one galvanometer so it creates a line from the laser diode. The other scans it across the model. All of the parts appear to be printed with a Makerbot.
It’s a quicky project and demonstrates what you can do, but it isn’t 100% perfect so you should be ready to modify it if you’d like to do other stuff, ‘K? This is a good beginning to a logging web-monitor, or remote storage system.
This is the new Arduino Ethernet+SD Shield functioning as a standalone web server. It’s currently hosting a few small websites and it’s also hosting a handful of XML files that are driving my new Cisco IP Phone Service application.
Rise above oneself and grasp the world – Archimedes. Making is making a comeback. A cornucopia of fabrication and tech labs public and private, are sprouting throughout the country. Maker Faires–sprawling outdoor extravaganzas that combine the atmosphere of a medieval fair with old low-tech and new high-tech garages–are bringing makers of all ages together to share their work and their learning (makerfaire.com). These new expressions of “thinkering” bring the wizened tinkerer and the tech-savvy youth together in playful competitions that range from the serious and sublime to the deliberately frivolous and outrageous. Fab labs provide makers with easy access to powerful and expensive technology tools in a community of like-minded minds.
Children play and draw with crayons practically every day, so why not make the experience more educational? This listing is for a set of 48 Crayola crayons with labels so that while children are coloring, they are also exposed to the names of chemicals that will make those colors! So instead of thinking “I want green” they will think “I want Barium Nitrate Ba(NO3)2 Flame” and then when they take chemistry in high school and their teacher sets some gas on fire and it makes a green color and they ask the class what chemical it was your student will know it was Barium! Genius!
A few weeks ago we got a batch of LEDs– a sample order from a new vendor. These are 10 mm diffused white LEDs, much like the ones that we use on the Peggy 2 or in the LED Ghosties. On the surface, they look okay. But after lighting them up, we noticed something funny in a few of them that led us to discover their deep dark– or really, shallow and clear –secret.
If you’re curious about whether the our panels can take a beating, watch this video of our 2 Watt solar panel below. We use industrial materials for the backing of each panel and don’t skimp on the coating material (which is a fair amount of the total cost). Chances are you’ve seen solar panels that have yellowed or cracked over time. Think of these at the opposite to those panels. We’ve left panels like these out for years and they’re still producing near their spec and looking great.
These panels come to us from Voltaic Systems, makers of fine solar-powered bags and packs. These are waterproof, scratch resistant, and UV resistant. They use a high efficiency monocrystalline cell. They output 6V at 330 mA via 3.5mm x 1.3mm DC jack connector. The substrate is an aluminum / plastic composite, specifically designed to be strong and lightweight. They can easily stand up to typical outdoor use including being dropped and leaned on. They’re very high quality and suggested for projects that will be exposed to the outdoors.