This week’s roundup from NOTCOT.org includes saucy Victorian pop-ups, glass blowing and indoor tents. To find out more about each post, click on its individual image.
Cap Ferret, the Maldives and Mauritious are all featured destinations this week in our roundup from NotVentures. To find out more about each post, click on is individual image.
LASERS!!! On looking for excuses to play with our new laser cutter ~ NOTlabs just created some signage for our friends at Dumbrella for San Diego Comic Con 2012! After a few experiments, we decided to go with laser cutting wood and acrylic ~ and having sanded clear acrylic with inlayed wood letters suspended from a clean black pipe structure. On the next page you can see how the process unfolded, and how fun watching the laser cutter in action is!
Another comic-con is upon us ~ and last night did a quick loop around preview night to see what inspiration and amusement was around. While not nearly as crazed feeling as previous years felt (so far!) ~ here’s a peek at the toys and displays that grabbed me! From hover boards and monstrous creatures from the Hobbit ~ to angry woebots and kobe ~ HUGE transformers to shrympees and rhinos ~ Hypnotoad to monster toytems ~ and so much more! Take a peek at day one on the next page!
The details of Project Squadt toys are just incredible. From the design to the fashions to the weapons and more… they are just stunning! Remember my first Squadt NKD Jack? Well thanks to a little mix up and an incredibly kind offer from designer, Ferg, when the shipments got mixed up for my fr0g s001 + K11 spot [swamp dwllr] and the fr0g s003 with K11 spot [frozn whole] were sent instead, 3 generous options were given: 1. Keep the frog s003/k11 2. Send the frog s003/k11 back and receive your fr0g s001/k11 as ordered. 3. Keep the fr0g s003/k11 and pay an additional $115 and receive your fr0g s001/k11 in addition. Naturally, i couldn’t resist keeping the s003 and paying the difference to get the s001! The scuba diver in me adores this series more than the others ~ having a soft spot for the velcro on scuba tank/helmet and those adorable fins ~ especially cute on the surveillance camera headed dog of a K11 spot… and the tiny zipper work, and the side pouches velcro off… even the speargun has the most unbelievably thin spear that fits inside it! Take a peek at all the details and a few other Playge/Squadt goodies on the page!
… and if you’re here at SDCC too, go get the gohst s003!
Impressive! Recently bought the Mophie Juice Pack Powerstation Pro before heading out to Bonnaroo ~ mostly to ensure that if i got separated from the rest or my phone battery was dying and i needed more power to play with the camera, etc i’d have an easy solution for iphone/htc sensation/anyone else with their usb charger… and not knowing what the weather would be like (since often it can become a rainy, muddy, mess) ~ “the IP65 rating means that this device is totally dust-proof (with the ports closed) and resistant to water being sprayed at it with a water-jet. Getting the powerstation PRO wet is no big deal (even in the shower*), but don’t try taking a bath with it.” Sounded perfect! It also has a 6,000 mAh capacity and up to 2.1amp, high-output charging which has been holding up wonderfully for traveling and having the ability to charge both my HTC Sensation and Shawn’s iPhone 4S from flashing red battery meters. Take a peek at unboxing and detail pics on the next page!
This week’s roundup from NOTCOT.org includes lost art, printed vascular networks and cable car rocking chairs. To find out more about each post, click on its individual image.
LASERS! NOTlabs is now outfitted with a Rabbit Laser 80-1290 laser cutter that has an 80 Watt laser tube and a 4’x3’ cutting area! This (in combination with our Makerbot) means we can create 2D+3D designs and start cutting, prototyping, and playing with them immediately. The machine works by bouncing a laser beam off of 3 mirrors to a focusing lens that directs the beam downwards into the material. Essentially it is an extremely precise and powerful upgrade from our hand held X-acto knifing that can cut through things such as 1/2” wood or acrylic. Since the beam is very thin we are able to make very precise cuts, as well as etch intricate details (like the etching you’ve seen on moleskines, MacBooks, etc.)
We explored whether to build our own (i.e. LASERSAUR), or go for a smaller Epilog or Universal laser cutter which Shawn has worked with extensively in the past… and the Rabbit Laser 1290 model with an 80 Watt laser tube was the best option. It’s been nice having the 10” Z-height as well as a pass through for when we want to send larger objects through the machine. It can reach up to 1000 dpi (which is plenty since we’re focusing on cutting versus engraving). On nice design details, the parts tray is a great catchall below the workbed which you can easily slide out to empty scraps or find valuables which may have fallen through.
The story behind Rabbit Laser USA distribution is a fascinating one: short story being that Ohio engineer, Raymond Scott, was looking for the best quality with greater affordability and when ordering his own, ended up taking over a full shipment of machines (which he then needed to sell), learning about importing/customs(re)crating/etc, and exploring the factories in China, and more… and a few years later, it has evolved into a family business, where he and his wife Carol (and even his young daughters help out!) have a warehouse in Ohio, carefully inspect and test each machine that comes in, they come out and personally install the machines and train you for a day with each purchase, and have a great feedback loop with King Rabbit in China to constantly improve the design details and software needs for the laser cutters. In the day that Ray came out, i learned more than i ever imagined about not only how a laser cutter works and how to take care of it, but so much about the business side and interaction with the King Rabbit manufacturing standards, facilities, and more as well. But back to the UNBOXING… or uncrating, rather… it was quite the adventure, so take a peek on the next page to see the uncrating and setup!
The latest from London-based editor, Justine Aw.
Yesterday, I had a chance to preview the new exhibition Designing 007 - Fifty Years of Bond Style at the Barbican Centre celebrating the 50th anniversary of 007 (and the 30th of the Barbican!). Spanning from from 1962’s Dr No to this year’s Skyfall, the exhibition celebrates 007’s slick style and as curator Bronwyn Cosgrave said, it is one of the few times that Bond himself takes the back seat. It’s not about the man, but about the world behind 007, from complex sets, elaborate costumes, crafty villains and futuristic gadgetry that make up his world. The exhibition runs from July 6th - September 5th, so definitely one to check out if you’re in London, and as it’s set to travel after September, you might be lucky enough to catch it elsewhere! More photos of this incredible gadget-filled retrospective on the next page!
This week’s roundup from NotVentures includes dining in the Dolomites, camping in hanging tents and an escape to Paris. To find out more about each post, click on its individual image.
Daniel Robson, who presented with Collective at New Designers 2012 Part 2. Robson’s ‘Seed Wheel’ is based on a subscription service that takes all the guesswork out of gardening. Specifically tailored to the customer’s location and season, each seed wheel is a customized, modular package of seeds with a minimum of non-recyclable waste. The seed wheel has perforated lines to allow for multiple planting. When ready to plant, the pod itself can be used as a dibber to push the seeds in, even eliminating the need for gardening tools! More photos of this clever project on the next page!
NOTlabs (the NOTCOT physical, experimental, play/make/hack/exploratory studio of sorts) has been quietly evolving faster and faster… recently you’ve seen the new Makerbot Replicator that just joined us… and i’m a bit overdue in sharing some of our other machines and projects with you… And loving skateboards (remember our Skateboard Swing?) first up ~ staring at the ugly, boring ceiling fan that hung above us led to the idea of of skateboards as fan blades! And sure enough a few days later, skateboards and a nice simple ceiling fan was acquired to test with! take a peek at our skateboard ceiling fan experiment on the next page.
William Banfield’s Micro-Make, a clever series of kits for schools, designed to engage young people in the way every day goods are produced. The first two of the series are the Micro-Make Vac Former and Rotational Moulder, which are compact, easily transportable kits that let children use vacuums to create their own molds and a rotational molder to create hollow forms! I got a brief demo of the kits in action and the kids who get to manufacture their own pieces are in for a treat! Take a look at more pictures on the next page!
For his BA Graphic Design course at Plymouth College of Art, Ross Penrose created a line of merchandise inspired by Channel 4’s Inside Nature’s Giants series. Ross came up with the idea when watching the fascinating anatomical series (as we all do!). I love the detailing of his work. The beautiful scale models are pre-laser cut on sheets of plywood (with gorgeous detailing!) and all come together in a single pack including a hardcover book of information about the anatomy of the species you construct! More photos on the next page.