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Shop Bots…the tougher the better.

Well, the Shop Bots have proven to be quite the challenge.  They are a great lesson in modification.  They’re giving me a “Coyote” complex; the Bots are my Road Runner.  Always returning to the drawing board. The Bots suffer a lot of abuse at the hands of our visitors.  But that’s OK, we take it in stride.  Its fun to see to see what broke or didn’t work with each specific Bot.  The real
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A Bicycle Powered Sewing Machine…It Exists…

Visiting Artist, Paul Nosa, came to the Shop last Friday and brought along his Solar Powered Sewing Machine.  He was going to use this contraption in the MakeShop, which is of course inside…So, instead of Sun Power he utilized Pedal Power.  His sewing machine was able to be hooked up to a bike powered generator.  People had to pedal a stationary bike to generate power for his sewing machine.  Brilliant….I
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Make Your Own Motor or: coping with variables

We tried something today, something that was a pure experiment… Felix came in today and immediately told me that he wanted to try out some “Do It Yourself” motors.  He wanted to see if we could find a design that we could teach visitors to make.  He showed me some ideas he had and some “how to” videos created by fellow Makers.  We decided to make three different designs and then figure o
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Let the Materials do the Talking…Let the Kids Teach.

I have to first give credit to Mandy, Laura and Finn for inpsiring this post.  Thanks guys… First things first, taking things apart is a lot of fun.  I’ve discussed this idea in previous posts.  To take something apart is to learn how something works; plain and simple.  Using working components from a broken object and repurposing them is such a fun activity.  Those two ideas, taking something apart and r
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New Motto: Motorize Everything

Well, we decided to test out our old Brush Bots (which are, essentially, motorized brushes that scoot about the floor) with out any suprvision from the staff.  Basically, we let the visitors play with them however they wanted.  It turns out that our Bots were not tough enough to survive an entire day with our visitors. Back to the drawing board… The MakeShop Interns and I decided to try and make the Bots toughe
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Working with what we have or: Becoming a MakeShop Scavenger

Daniel, a regular visitor to the Museum, helped me realize that you can seriously start to develop an entirely new project right on the Museum floor in front of visitors and staff alike.  The Curcuit blocks are back and Electricity is the Theme of the MakeShop currently.  For about two hours on Sunday Physics and Prototyping became the main attraction, at least for Daniel and I.  This entire Experiment was spurred on
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