XFF wants your Grinder tales

Posted by on November 14th, 2012

Our friends at the Extreme Futurist Festival are looking for true tales of DIY Transhumanism to feature in a short film. Details follow:

This will be a 20 minute film focusing on the Transhumanist/Futurist/Biohacking underground. We are interested in hearing your stories and would like to screen this film at the next Extreme Futurist Festival.

Please send us clips of you discussing your views on this new emerging subculture. extremefuturistfest2012@gmail.com

Hacking your Enlightenment and other transhuman future titbits

Posted by on August 22nd, 2012
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Particularly fascinating interview with Jeffery A. Martin here, not just for his research into the Enlightened, but for his eventual synthesis towards a speculative life for the newly near-immortal.

Other transhuman future titbits from around the web of late:

and Da Vinci wept (#WINGS)

Posted by on March 20th, 2012

Maybe it’s a real angel with fake wings – LIFE

WINGS… who doesn’t want them? Now you can upgrade from the expensive, cosmetic pretties to this, thanks to WIRED:

Using videogame controllers, an Android phone and custom-built wings, a Dutch engineer named Jarno Smeets has achieved birdlike flight.

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According to Smeets’ calculations, he needed approximately 2,000 Watts of continuous power to support his roughly 180-pound frame and 40-pound wing pack. His arms could only really provide 5 percent of that, so the rest would have to come from motors. His arms and pecs would basically serve to guide the device and to flap the wings.

He built his electronic, wireless wing set out of Wii controllers, accelerometers harvested from an HTC Wildfire Android phone and Turnigy motors.

When he landed after the 60-second flight, he said, “At one moment you see the ground moving away, and then suddenly you’re free, a really intense feeling of freedom. The true feeling of flying. A [bleep] magical moment. The best feeling I have felt in my life.”

Well, only if you’re brave enough.

(Interesting to see wing-less angels being part of the plot of The River too)

UPDATE – as was suspected by many, this was a hoax. This doesn’t mean Wing Culture isn’t a fascinating opposition to Drone Culture.

DIY Conductive Ink

Posted by on March 20th, 2012

This is a bottle of Conductive Ink. Thanks to Jordan Bunker & co we can show you how to make it:

Conductive inks have a myriad of different interesting applications. As a quick, additive construction method for electronic circuits, they are especially intriguing. Unfortunately, for a long time they have been just out of reach of the hobby market. They are too expensive to buy in decent quantities, too complicated to make, too resistive to be practical, or require high annealing temperatures (which would ruin many of the materials you’d want to put traces on).

Now, though, thanks to some brilliant minds at the UIUC Materials Research Laboratory, you can make your own decent conductive ink!

It goes without saying, but still must be said: always be careful when attempting Science in the kitchen.

via MAKE

DIY Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation

Posted by on November 16th, 2011

LEGAL AND MEDICAL DISCLAIMERS… That said, check this out:

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via @eglinski

“My Body, My Laboratory” in TIME

Posted by on March 17th, 2011

One of a rare breed of scientists willing to volunteer their own bodies in the service of science, professor Warwick let British surgeons place a silicon chip with 100 spiked electrodes directly into his nervous system in March 2002.

Any excuse to post a pic of Kevin Warwick, but this is taken from TIME’s overview of the advances made via self-experimentation and how it’s continuing today amongst enthusiasts on the internet; My Body, My Laboratory:

For centuries, self-experimentation was an accepted form of science. Sir Isaac Newton almost burned his cornea because he could think of no other means of understanding visual hallucinations than staring at the sun. But in recent years, the academic institutions, grant agencies and journals that have codified the scientific method have come to view self-experimentation with suspicion, worrying that it leads to bias or misleading results. Nevertheless, the practice continues among a small number of professors and doctors who see it as the last chance to prove an underfunded theory, as an act of solidarity with other study subjects. Or simply as an avenue to fame.

Self-experimentation has also found new life on the Internet. So-called self-tracking has already made lay scientists of many of us as we buy the latest exercise device or nutritional supplement and then log into forums to compare our findings with other investigators. What the practice lacks in rigor, it makes up for in zeal, not to mention the sheer number of subjects running their mini-studies. Somewhere in there, real — if ad hoc — science might occur. “To me, [self-tracking] is the future of self-experimentation,” says Seth Roberts, a professor of psychology at Tsinghua University in China, whose work led to the quirky best-selling diet book The Shangri-La Diet. The practice will continue among “normal people who are simply intent on discovering what works for them.”

Denis Harscoat, co-organizer of the Quantified Self group in London, agrees. Workers are more productive if they complete regular, small tasks rather than an occasional large project; the same is true of do-it-yourself science, he says. At the meetings Harscoat convenes, members discuss everything from monitoring their blood pressure to which behaviors best facilitate writing a play. “You might think we are a bunch of data-crunching geeks,” he says, “but it’s good to track.”

And track the Quantified Selfers do, often aided by new products designed for them: Zeo headbands, said to monitor sleep phases; Nike plus, shoes with a distance, speed and time sensor embedded in them; Asthmapolis, which records the location, time and date of each breath so asthmatics can monitor their attacks. Every bit of data is shared in meetings so it can be considered in the aggregate.

Kinect video scratching

Posted by on February 2nd, 2011

From from artist Mauritius Seeger, via Make:

I use modul8 with a midi controller and have kind of given up on video scratching because it’s so bad in software when i last tried it ( with modul8) and have been generally frustrated with the type of control i have over video playback in vj software.

The reason i was interested in using kinect for this is because i can imagine a much more intuitive, natural and fun way to control visuals than sliders or a mouse. i was going to add clip transition controlled with a swipe movement, since scratching and clip changing would go a long way in having something usable already, and that would just be the beginning.

3D Printing in Titanium

Posted by on January 19th, 2011

Offered by i.materialise, but very expensive:

Titanium 3D printing opens up an entirely new world of advanced engineering, manufacturing and jewelry applications for creative people worldwide. Titanium’s high heat resistance, high accuracy and unparalleled strength lets designers now make things that before now could only be made by the research and development departments of only the largest corporations in the world. By putting this technology in the public’s hands were democratizing manufacturing and giving you the opportunity to, design and order something this is exactly as you want it to be.

Link via make.

Arduino: The Documentary

Posted by on January 9th, 2011

This 30min documentary covers not just the origin of the Arduino, but how it’s helped create the MakerBot (which is getting a lot of attention at CES) and other interesting designs in hackerspaces across the globe.


It’s also worth pointing out the Practical Arduino book and blog, co-authored by Jon Oxer (who we’ve featured here before for his RFID implant.)

via Mark Pesce

Sensebridge’s wearable sensory augmentation devices

Posted by on January 6th, 2011

Sensebridge (mentioned in the previous post) have two wearable project kits available:

For a demo of each, see this video:

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Lepht Anonym – Cybernetics for the Masses

Posted by on January 6th, 2011

Video of Lepht Anonym‘s presentation at 27c3, mentioned earlier, is now online.

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Remains of the Day: Kinect Hacking Makes for Minority Report-Style Browsing

Posted by on November 30th, 2010

Video via lifehacker.

Kinect Sex

Posted by on November 29th, 2010

Slashdong discusses the Kinect and sex:

In summary, the camera can watch you masturbate, easily know you are masturbating, and use information that to control shit, be it your text editor or someone else’s love device. It can also make bad 3d porn of you while you masturbate and control, or it can overlay cartoony shit on you so you don’t have to be you while you’re doing whatever it is you do to yourself if you’re into that to control that thing that other person is into.

Binary Glove

Posted by on November 29th, 2010

Syuzi, from FashioningTech explains:

The Binary Glove, by game designer Pete Hawkes, is a fun interactive gaming wearable that teaches you a bit about bits. Each fingertip represents a bit value in a simple binary sequence 1, 2, 4, 8, and 16 and is fitted with a pressure sensor that turns each bit on and off. The LCD displays the sum total of the sequence along with each value in the sequence.

The Human Jukebox

Posted by on November 25th, 2010

Via CrunchGear, the experiment streams live tomorrow.

When Light Graffiti Meets Performance Art

Posted by on November 6th, 2010

JörgMiedza_ JanWöllert_Light

From tonyleather over at EnvironmentalGraffiti:

LAPP-Pro is a Bremen, Germany-based duo that specializes in light art performance photography, often accompanied by music. Jörg Miedza and Jan Wöllert have been working together since the autumn of 2007, although both have photographic connections going back many years. The basic concept of LAPP was invented by Jan, accidentally trapped overnight in an old industrial complex in Bremen, back in the summer of 2007. He amused himself by making shapes and patterns with some LED lamps, quickly realising that he had discovered a new way of creating photographs.

Descended from light drawing, the basis of their work are long-time exposures, with moving light sources used to create luminous light sculptures that are captured in photographs. Many compositions consist of up to 20 single steps between the opening and closure of the shutter. This requires that, apart from imagination, fantasy and creativity, the performer must have body control to achieve the exact pace of synchronised steps with the handling and distribution of lights. It is very much a performance that must in many cases be rehearsed before the images are made for real.

See also:

AVR Programming 01: Introduction

Posted by on November 5th, 2010

Mike Szczys over at hack a day is creating a tutorial for a programming a microcontroller.

This tutorial series aims to make you comfortable programming the Atmel AVR line of microcontrollers. Whether you’ve never touched a microcontroller before, or you’ve cut your teeth with dozens of Arduino projects, this will help you get right down to the hardware and give you the confidence to build anything.

You’ll need a little prerequisite knowledge, a tool or two, a program for your computer and a controller for starters.

Mold Sculptures On an iPad App, Then Print Them With a 3D Printer

Posted by on November 4th, 2010

From Gizmodo, play with digital clay and then print out your masterpiece:

It’s probably the easiest way to design 3D objects, without mucking around on CAD or other design programs. Actually using your fingertips to bend the lump of clay within the iPad app, turning it into a little object to print out—well, it sounds like a dream come true. Imagine your mom making Christmas tree ornaments this way, or being able to conjure up a little doohicky for sliding under a short table leg, within minutes?

Now the 3-D printers need to drop in price, just a little more…..

Toolbox: Setting up a home science lab

Posted by on September 17th, 2010

Make has an excellent guide to setting up your own home lab:

As is true of most hobbies and other organized activities, if you’re going to do home science, it’s desirable to have a dedicated place to do it. But dedicated lab space is by no means essential. After all, when most people think of home science the image that comes to mind is a kid working with a chemistry set at the kitchen table. Even if the kitchen table is the only available place to work, you can get a lot of home science done.

But before you settle on the kitchen table, give serious consideration to other possible locations for your home lab. Of course, you may have to choose between using the kitchen table and having no lab at all. In that case, do the best you can with what you have to work with. Here are some things to think about when you choose a location for your home lab.

Brother AirScouter projects 16-inch screen right on your eyeball

Posted by on September 17th, 2010

From slashgear, a prototype Retinal Imaging Display:

The images projected directly onto your retina simulate a 16-inch screen viewed for about three feet away according to the maker. The tech came from the Brother printer tech for laser and ink jet printers. The AirScouter will be launched in Japan for industrial uses like overlaying manuals on machinery. That is pretty cool and I could see a market for this thing in the DIY realm for folks that like to fix things themselves. Nothing like step-by-step directions clipped to your eyeball.

Thanks and hat tip to @bindychild!