Jan 27, 2010

More Technologies for You to Explore

There's a video at the end of this post... watch it. It's narrated by the Editor in Chief of WIRED magazine, Chris Anderson. Many of us have met Chris at WorldFest where he demo'd his DIY Drone (complete with NXT). Chris and his kids are LEGO fans, too!

The latest issue of WIRED (issue 18.02) is titled "The New Industrial Revolution" and it's a great issue. Kids (and adults): Find a copy of this issue and read the article. This is your future. DIY fabrication, on-demand 3D printing, metal cutting, and milling. Dream it - design it - build it yourself (or with some help via outsourcing the work). (The latest issue isn't yet available online - keep checking here if you'd like to read the online digital article when it becomes available.)

Also this month, the latest issue of Make: (issue 21) is out - it, too, is all about DIY Home Fabrication. Want an open source plasma cutter (I do!)? You'll find an article on it and links to build your own. Want more info on the MakerBot? It's in there. (There's also a short article on a new book that shows you how to build your own CNC machine - written by some guy names James Floyd Kelly - the article's a bit amateurish but you might like it). There are also links and an article for building your own 3D scanner. Definitely an issue to grab.

What does this have to do with NXT robotics? Not much. But how cool would it be to build and operate a LEGO CNC machine that can cut plastic and foam? What about a LEGO 3D Printer that prints its own plastic bricks that you design? (LEGO - send my commission checks to the address on file.) I'm totally serious - as prices drop on these items, it's not unreasonable to think that one day LEGO may offer the LEGO MINDSTORMS Home Fabrication Kit, complete with CNC machine, 3D scanner, and 3D printer. I don't care how much - I'd buy two.

Anyway, enjoy the video below - and definitely hunt down the magazines and grab a copy of each if you can. If all these machines are totally unfamiliar to you, now is the time to start learning about them... like I said - this is your future.


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