Every year Legoland gets dirty and it has to shut down for some toothbrush scrubbing. Getting all that grime off those blocks isn’t easy, but neither is dusting the top of the House of Parliament. And while it’s quiet we might as well trim the hedges.
Did you have a chance to see the white water sports at the Olympics, like kayaking and canoeing?
If so, you probably noticed that the entire venue was artificial. The Lee Valley White Water Centre in the north of London was created out of a vast expanse of flat land. The designers, including a firm from Colorado, S20, had to build it all from scratch, including the high-powered water pumps and the speedy, treacherous river.
It made for a fantastic set of competitions and, it turns out, a lasting site for Londoners. The venue is going to stay open for both recreational activities and as a training site for future Olympians.
Since the earliest whitewater slalom competitions in the 1930s, most artificial courses have been constructed primarily of concrete, with static forms inserted to mimic boulders, logs…S20′s design turns the static features into adjustable plastic modules—a bit like underwater Legos—which can be positioned with a high degree of precision, and moved at no cost, essentially creating a new stretch of river each time.
Six families of makers from the Bay Area are working on building a fully-operational motion controlled flight simulator based on the fighter ship from Battlestar Galactica.
Using the fuselage of a small plane, the team has already built a motion platform that rotates a full dizzying 360 degrees in both the pitch and roll axes. They’re still a ways away from finishing the project, including furnishing the interior of the cockpit to look like the ship from the show, and programming the open source flight simulator software to work with their rig.
You can learn more about all this by visiting the project home, The Viper, or through the Kickstarter fundraising project. Oh, and check out my favorite part of the whole thing, the test model built using legos…I would love to see NASA doing that 🙂