Showing posts with label illustration. Show all posts
Showing posts with label illustration. Show all posts

Monday, July 1, 2013

Awesome Things Seen at the Kansas City Maker Faire

Welcome to the Kansas City Maker Faire! I took my younger daughter, the Gingercat, to the pre-show party Friday night before the show and the first day of the show. These are a few of the things we saw. A larger collection is located on my Google+ stream at

As is typical in geek events, cosplay characters roamed the show. The Iron Man entourage was a big hit! The female Iron Man was a little scary.

Gingercat was wielding my old Sony NEX-3. She now has a weapon to shoot back when she catches me aiming a lens her way!

Last year, I posted about a great IBM Selectric conversion. It has been updated and no longer needs a laptop to drive it. See version one at

Behold the little Raspberry Pi processor that now drives this beast.

The creator had fun wandering around is costume as well. The Hammerspace makerspace and the Cowtown Computer Congress shared space and projects at the show.

And in the fun and weird category, here is a creation from one of guys at Hammerspace. He built this contraption in two weeks out of scraps laying around the shop. Children fish for babies to feed to the mother. No worries; new babies come along just as quickly.

Inky goodness! The lino cut print goes in my office. The best part about Maker Faire is getting to meet and talk with people about their projects.

This sculptor does large scale bronze. His pantograph device is pretty amazing!

Maker Faire wouldn't be complete without PowerWheels racing! This is what you get when you mix adults, battery powered kiddie cars and a whole bunch of modifications. They staged racing heats and endurance runs over the two day show.

We were happy to see Super Awesome Sylvia and her Dad, the Tech Ninja. Sylvia was showing her home brew WaterColorBot. She earned a spot at the White House Science Fair and got the run of the house while the parental units chilled.

This one is for Richard P on the current state of 3D printing. I reread his comment from last year regarding 3D printing. It was everywhere and is barely a novelty among the maker crowd today. Later this year, Staples will carry a household printer for less than $800. Kinkos may start printing services in stores. People are using Google Hangouts to collaborate on countless useful projects including mechanical hands, artificial limbs, machine parts and casts. Auto parts are made out of sintered, printed metal and MIT is experimenting with printing entire buildings.

Kansas City even has its own R2D2 builders club. These are not your run-of-the-mill models. Note the machined joints. Gorgeous!

Members of the Airship Noir group ran a little experimental station. I think this guest is being reprogrammed. Be sure to read the sign on the Jacob's ladder.

With almost 300 makers in the house, Union Station is getting pretty crowded with overflow in the parking lot and most of Science City. We almost didn't stop in one of the side rooms. Good thing we dropped in or we would have missed this cool device. What a great way to use unloved analog technology!

The photos here and on Google+ don't even scratch the surface. The show is a phenomenal success. The maker movement is strong in Kansas City with abandoned buildings being turned into maker hives. There is a reason why Google chose Kansas City for its first fiber Internet project. For more technology and artistic greatness, checkout #makerfairekc on Twitter.

I'll leave you with one of the headliners taking one of Nikola Tesla's inventions to the next level.

 Yet another Copyright notice *sigh* Yep, the words and images are Copyright DwayneF of Vintage Technology Obsessions. Having tired of vague threats, I will simply remind the reader that all content creators deserve their due. Please like, share, post, Google +1, etc. and share the social love. Follow and I will likely follow you back. Commercial use requires prior written authorization from the Copyright holder. And so on...

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

The Print Shop Saves the Day!

I have to confess to a bit of a blogging dry spell as of late.  I've had too much travel and more than a few kid events over the last two weeks.  I promise to arrange my thoughts into something vaguely coherent in the near future.  Until then, I present you with evidence of a (mostly) dead brand and a bit of quaint computing technology.

Not surprisingly, I found this early Mac detritus in a thrift store.  Today, we all take 300 DPI laser printed documents for granted.  In 1989, not so much.  Check out that super sexy mouse! 

My favorite bit of advertising puffery:  "You don't have to be an artist to use The Print Shop.  However, after just a few minutes, The Print Shop will unleash your creativity and make you look like an artist without even trying."

I am impressed at the grammatical accuracy exhibited on this box.  It appears that True Nerds were at the helm of the Broderbund empire.  You'll have to pretend that the "o" has a slash through it.

I kept the tractor feed paper for typing fun and recycled the box.  It was a semi-happy trip down memory lane.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

A Typogram Received! Election Avoidance on the Blog of the Beast

It's election night.  I am a serious political junkie and need a temporary distraction.  I have interrupted my MSN, CNN, Politico, Wonkette and Twitter feeds to bring forth a wondrous Typogram received from Ryan Adney of Magic Margin!

Behold, the envelope!  Yes, Ryan used his Royal Navy "radio mill" for the envelope.  As a typeface junkie, I very much appreciate this kind gesture.

The hand drawn desert landscape reminds me of warm, sunny places.  I love the actinic  glare of the Valley of the Sun.

This great greeting card was inserted in the envelope.  What a great graphic!

The real prize was tucked inside.  This postcard is pretty much awesome. Repeat after me... we must worship the Sholes.  It is mightier than mountains and cranks out words more potent than edged weapons.  Besides, according to Robert Messenger, Mark Twain got pretty ornery about the Sholes' offspring.

Ryan, thanks for the spiffy Typogram.  Thanks also to  Anna of A Machine for the End of the World for creating The International Correspondence Initiative. 

Here is the back of the postcard, also by way of the Royal Navy mill.  Sweet.

As for my oblique reference to the "Blog of the Beast", I was referring to the page count as it appeared when I opened my Blogger dashboard:  24,666.  Given that it is election night, there is a certain irony in the fact that my pageviews are equal to the last digits of a zip code in Topeka, Kansas.  This nearby hamlet is home to our state capitol and the infamous Fred Phelps of the Westboro Baptist Church.

So, from election avoidance central, I wish you all a pleasant evening.

Friday, May 25, 2012

Geek Pride Day!

Today is Geek Pride Day!  It is also the 35th anniversary of Star Wars Episode IV.  In some quarters it is Towel Day in celebration of the Hitchhiker's Guide.  To celebrate, I have posted some photos of some of my favorite geeky things.

Saturday, May 19, 2012

Rhinos Illustrated in "The Kingdom of Nature"

This is part 2 of the series on illustrations from "The Kingdom of Nature; An Illustrated Museum of the Animal World".  Just click on the label at the end for the rest of the series.

This post is just for the members of the Typosphere.  There is a special rhino obsession that accompanies an annual typing event, the NANOWRIMO (National Novel Writing Month).  To see rhino mascots at their best, visit

Our guest typewriter for this post is mysterious as it has not yet been blogged.  Some may recognize its unique typeface.  We also have a guest writer:  Hannah F. of

Basic rhino anatomy.
The horse just doesn't get that the rhino wants to play.  Awww!

When pressed, the mighty rhino will defend himself.

But mostly, the rhino is a friend to all animals.

Friday, April 27, 2012

The Kingdom of Wacky and Wonderful Illustration

At a recent antique show, I scored a slightly beat up and thoroughly awesome copy of The Kingdom of Nature; An Illustrated History of the Animal World by Mrs. Frank Leslie and copyrighted in 1888.  The preface advertises a content of almost 1,000 illustrations.  Many of them are just amazing in a distinctly late 19th century way.  Here are a few samples to start with.  A series will follow here and on my secondary blog,

The price for this gem?  $5.00.  One of the high points of living in the dawn of digital books is that the real ones are being dumped on the cheap.  The sad part is that many will never find a home and will end up in a landfill somewhere.  It appears that this book has not been digitized.  I hope you enjoy the images here and to follow.

The Oliver 9 decided to contribute a short review seen further below.

Times were tough in the "Predamite Period" described at the beginning of the book.
The Mighty Oliver 9 is back!  With assistance from the faithful gingercat.  He gets grumpy without exercise.

Fortunately, evolution kicked in.  I wonder if he knew how to use a typewriter?

It's all good until he runs out of femurs for his feline friend.

This calligraphic type style should be mandated by law.
This is a hefty and substantial tome.  Cover to cover, it is pushing 2 inches thick with 440 pages of slight puffery that is typical of the era.  I have read far worse in turn of the last century technology history reviews.  If the title page is any indication, this is probably the best book ever written!  Or something like that.

Yep, best book ever!