Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Open Make Session 2: Cardboard

"It's really about how well we can play together."
~Josh Short from Cardboard Institute of Technology

What can you make with cardboard?

You can make miniature buildings, adding paint and architectural features, even scaled photos of actual doors and windows.
 Stack the buildings, and you get something else altogether:
You can make masks and props:
Full-sized medieval gates:
You can even make yourself into a giant robot:
Saturday's Open Make session was all about cardboard. Cardboard feels like the most egalitarian material, being both abundant and intuitive to work with. There probably isn't a child alive who hasn't cut apart a box and taped it back together to make something or another. Cardboard is both pliable and sturdy, lightweight and solid, flat and textural. It is easy to glue and paint, to cut down or build up to any size.

The speaker session included this cardboard stop-motion video:
If you want to listen to the hourlong speaker session in its entirety, the webcast is here.

Just as inspiring was the plussing session. Young Makers from the Bay Area presented their projects in whatever stages they were in. Sometimes this meant printouts from the web, sometimes there were drawings or wiring diagrams, and a few were in the first stage of creation.

John and Alex (and also Sam, who was skiing) plan to make a Ruben's Tube.
Isabella is working on a K'nex horse which will accurately show the motion of a running horse by turning a single crank.
Joseph is refining his Halloween Metroid costume.
And Savannah, along with her mentor Sara, were making a music visualizer.
There were also plans for go karts, a secret-knock gumball machine, and a power-saving mechanism to turn off electrical power to appliances when the room is unoccupied.

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