You may have noticed that I posted a lot this year. Quite a lot actually. The blog hasn’t seen this many posts since 2008. That’s quite an achievement I must say. Granted, some of the posts this year have been quite pathetic, and some were delayed due to server reliability issues, but every day had a post. That was a resolution I made last year. I’m happy to say that we did it.
2016 has been full of amazing, unexpected things. Sunset in Yosemite, an Alaskan adventure, a crazy election, and lots of drones. I do not know what 2017 has in store, I will say this though, the ever increasing number of posts is unsustainable. Do not expect daily updates tomorrow. Do not expect the complete shutdown of the site either. It’s complicated business, though I will still post things. Trust me, there’s plenty of different alternate history stories I have to tell, including maybe going into more detail from yesterday’s bombshell of a reveal.
You know that I love 360° video and photo. I think it’s the next big thing in the world of photography. Up until now the only way to get really high quality content was to attach multiple cameras together in rigs and stitch the resulting footage after the fact. That’s all changing now. Sphere is a new lens that takes a full 360° by 180° image in a single frame.
This looks like it could be a game changer. However, it looks like it will cost just as much money as a multi-camera rig. Unfortunately most modern affordable DSLRs do not shoot 4K video (the photos themselves are over 4K resolution), and 360° is best viewed in the highest resolution possible, usually 4K is a minimum requirement. However, since it’s a lens, as camera technology improves over time, this lens will still be useful.
No pricing is announced, you have to make inquiries. You can rent it out though. Something I might be interested in doing one day.
YouTube users Sam and Niko together with their team at Corridor Digital 3-D printed an arrow casing for a GoPro. They then placed it into an air cannon and fired it. It went better than expected. The initial launch was successful, but the follow up straight up resulted in a broken GoPro. Not to worry, they had extras so they tried again. They calculated the speed to be about 84 miles per hour. Though, I don’t like their usage of Google Maps to estimate the distance the GoPro traveled. It was only about 400 feet, they were in a field, they could have easily measured that themselves. Anyway, that’s the difference between real scientists, and people having fun.
After it was all said and done, they stabilized the video. You can see that towards the end above. It’s not terrible, though it is nauseating to watch I think. I’d rather watch the native one personally. They could probably fix this by changing the aspect ration the camera shoots to square, or more square than the 1080p or 4k quality it’s currently set at.
Instructables user grandpapaning has built this pretty neat tap-dancing robot. In actuality, it serves no purpose whatsoever. In practice though, it’s a great way to teach people about the different areas of science – Electricity, electronics, mechanical design, turning electrical signals into physical forces. In general, lots of stuff. It’s all pretty neat really. There’s still time left in this Christmas vacation. Maybe you should look at building this useless thing.
Wendell Kapustiak built a modern Pipe Organ. Modern in the sense that naturally, it’s computer controlled. The air is supplied by a modified server cooling fan. The keys are played by an Arduino. And the songs are chosen by a web interfaced run on a Rasberry Pi.
It is pretty neat, I will give him that. I do like that he used wood for the pipes. The PVC pipes that lead to the valves though look horrible, that’s just like my opinion though. Overall, the entire thing is better than something I could build. I like it.