Category DIY

Beauty is embarrassing – Wayne White

I was in the first time I saw his word paintings.

Actually, that’s not the truth… I was in more than thirty years ago when Pee Wee’s Playhouse first aired. That show is hard to understand from a contextual standpoint. It was birthed in a desert of ultra-predictable, off-white bland television shows. Pee Wee’s Playhouse was a visual anarchy of ideas… if Salvador Dali was a Producer of kids television programming he would have created that show… and he would have hired Wayne White just as Paul Reubens did.

This a great, straightforward film about an artist born in Tennessee, living in Los Angeles and addicted to creating.

More on Wayne’s world here.

Hacking your vehicle’s interior

I wrote about the surfers transportation of choice a few months back. The truth behind that post is that I saw a photo of a Jay Nelson… altered vehicle… and found a way to write a piece around it.

Below is another Jay gem. This time he’s altering Rob’s Save-Mono-Lake van that some of us see around town. Simple van, generic van… until Jay arrives.

There is something quite simple about this idea, if you don’t like something… find a way to change it. I’ve written 21 posts on various DIY approaches, this makes one more. I know… you don’t own a vehicle like this… so customize something else… make something undisputedly… yours.

If this then that

Problem. Your aged pet can’t take the summer heat but you don’t want to spring for air conditioning 24×7.

Solution. Pop the air conditioner into a web-connected outlet (wemo), set up a conditional statement at IFTTT (if this then that) that looks at average temps on your street and if temps hit 75 the air conditioner turns on.

We’ve lived with conditional triggers in the financial markets for a long time. If Apple hits 600, sell 50% of holdings. Same with home thermostats, if temps fall below 60 turn the heat on.

Now you can employ conditional triggers elsewhere.

  • Every Monday email me the gas  station within 5 miles of my house with the lowest price for 89 octane
  • When the Bones Brigade doc is being streamed on Netflix, email me a heads up
  • Email me the Kindle Top 100 free book list every three months
  • Text my phone every day the tide is under 3 feet and the swell is over 4 feet with a Western orientation
  • Save ever Instagram post I make to my Dropbox account
  • Etc.

More ideas for here.

I’m not drawn the the gadget element with this… I’m attracted to the larger idea that logical triggers are now seeping outside of the developer realm and into the mainstream. I’ll be watching to see when my mom adopts this…

Landfill Harmonic

I’m enough of a DIY fan that the concept has it’s own category on this blog… and yet I’ve seen few things as magical as the below concept.

It’s a trailer for the film Landfill Harmonic and features the Recycled Orchestra.

If you love music, watch this. Heck… even if you don’t love music check this trailer out.

The essence of musical innovation found floating in an ocean of garbage.

Clearing landmines via massive rolling tumbleweeds

Supposedly it was Plato who said “necessity is the mother of invention.” 

I think the invention below is a near perfect fit with that phrase. The inventor lost his father to a land mine in Afghanistan, was smuggled out of the country and designed the below from his base in The Netherlands.

Genius design; requires no power; decreases the cost to clear a single landmine from $1,200 to around 40 Euro; can be deployed by locals; can clear multiple mines; powered by the wind.

The $9 cardboard bicycle

I’ve always been smitten with alternative materials… including cardboard.

Cardboard has very high strength-to-weight characteristics, wide-scale availability and even looks great. It looks natural… almost like the wood it came from.

Years ago Frank Gehry’s cardboard chairs captured my imagination for these reasons. They are fun, light, surprisingly comfortable… but they aren’t exactly “design within reach.” It’s this last point that always rubbed me the wrong way. $1,000 for a chair made of cardboard feels extremely exclusive… not exactly an option for a person looking for an alternative to Ikea.

I love everything about the story told in the video below.

I love that everyone told him it couldn’t be done. (why do we do that… why do we have such a tiny amount of imagination for what is possible?) I love that he didn’t listen. I love that his wife supported his exploration and his vision. I love that he struggled with process. I love the price point. I love that there is a kids version.

I love… this story.

Izhar cardboard bike project from Giora Kariv on Vimeo.

Running a canyon; the beauty of the irrational

Below is another little vignette that speaks to how we address the challenges and opportunities which cross our paths.

What I love about this film is that it speaks to the value of taking on a challenge that is optional. I also love how it addresses the potentially irrational element of doing something others don’t see as enticing.

Why travel across the globe to surf a specific wave? Why climb a mountain? We do these things because doing them defines who we are.

“Two roads diverged in a wood, and I
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference” – Frost

The Beauty of the Irrational from The African Attachment on Vimeo.

The art of the pitch… video

Pitches for capital have transformed into a world where crowd-sourcing is a key component.

Blah blah blah, the world changed, blah blah blah.

You know everything else I’ll say here… you’ve heard it all before.

Check out this pitch video. It’s strong.

More on this particular effort here.

Handmade mechanical watches from Brooklyn

Ever since I could tell the difference between an automatic watch and everything else… I was smitten with the former. As all-things-digital have become more commonplace this love for analog, mechanical watches has only deepened.

My first automatic was a Seiko Diver’s watch I bought off a fisherman at a flea market somewhere in the Florida Keys. I’ll never forget that moment or that watch (which I lost surfing a decade or so ago).

An automatic watch does not necessarily equate to a high-priced watch but all high-priced watches are automatics. This relationship simply suggests that watches that aren’t automatic were designed as a disposable or semi-disposable consumer product. For proof of this go ahead and list your favorite quartz on eBay.

The below video caught my eye as I heard about the “modding” movement a few years ago. Modding is when people take existing product and modify it. It’s not a new phenomenon, I’ve modded more than a few consumer products over the years… but this one seemed… more interesting. I ended up connecting with a person in Hong Kong who was starting with Seiko 5 movements and essentially custom making watches. It made perfect sense… why not take high-quality watch movements and… create something new, something better?

This isn’t an Asian phenomenon… as this video proves.

Straight outta Brooklyn.

Everything is a remix

Intellectual property is the new Lego blocks.

Everything is a Remix Part 1 from Kirby Ferguson on Vimeo.

Everything is a Remix Part 2 from Kirby Ferguson on Vimeo.

Everything is a Remix Part 3 from Kirby Ferguson on Vimeo.

Everything is a Remix Part 4 from Kirby Ferguson on Vimeo.