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March 2007 Archives

March 3, 2007

Is Oprah the most connected person?

I just found this site, Knover. A site that practices the "Six Degrees" theory. It basically maps and keeps a database of famous people and their affiliations. I believe this site scapes the Internet for articles with the specific names, and compiles it in a database, so you can cross-reference people with people, affiliation with affiliation, or people with affiliation. I just searched for Oprah, and her profile alone, came up with 15 pages of people, and has 973 web associations. Warren Buffet has 63 web associations, Bill Gates has 462 web associations, George Soros has just 213. Wait! I found someone who beat Oprah with 1,798 web associations, Bill Clinton. I'm not counting George Bush (2,149 web associations) because it seems like most of it is related to what he's doing with the war, i.e. his connection with Adolf Hitler? I also like how they have separate categories like business, music, fashion, news and politics.

The pitfalls, don't type someone not famous, or it will crash, and it tracks just the mainstream/popular "notables." Although, a profile came up for John Zorn. A search for Clay Shirky came up with a profile as well, but I couldn't find Red Burns.

March 5, 2007

Don't ask me what happened...

I found this broken street light on Astor place on the way to St. Mark's place. Can you imagine the sound of the crash when the head of this light hit the ground? Maybe someone crashed into it when they tried to parallel park. Anyway, notice the scale of this light. When you see a street lamp, it looks a lot smaller than when the head is at arm's length.


CNC Fabrication, Part 01

Mark and Toru, our profs, arranged this field trip to visit 4-pli (a studio) that has a 3-axis CNC milling machine. Basically it can mill just about anything.



The smallest drill-bit used on this machine.milling_03.jpg

Serious vaccuums to suck excess dust and debris from this machine.

This is Mastercam, an application, that simulates the machine milling your 3-D design before it mills. I wish this was a screensaver.

The blue material on the bed is styrofoam. When the milling machine is turned on, the bed sucks the air out so that the styrofoam can not move during the process.


Drill bits that are primarily used for undercutting.

This is the interface for this machine. You can see the X, Y, and Z values on this screen.

It goes through two passes. The first pass is rough because it uses a larger drill bit. The second pass is smoother because if uses a smaller drill bit. This is the finished design. If you look at the Mastercam photo, you will see this design on the screen.


Our assignment is to create a surface that can be milled in Maya using dynamics and applying different force fields to manipulate the plane.

CNC Fabrication, Part 02

72 North 15th Street
Brooklyn, NY 11222

Here are some surfaces that were milled. It mills masonite, wood, Plexiglas, and lighter metals, like aluminum (it takes longer).


March 10, 2007

TED Conference

Last year, my friend Jay Moorthy told me about TED, and I've heard about it here and there. Lisa Strausfeld also mentioned TED when she lectured about Richard Saul Wurman (known for his book Understanding USA, where famous designers created information graphics about statistical data in the U.S.). For those of you who don't know about it, TED is the acronym for Technology, Entertainment, Design. Some notable speakers and performers have been Al Gore, Malcolm Gladwell, Cameron Sinclair, Nicholas Negroponte, Jeff Han, Tracy Chapman, Sirena Huang, an 11-year-old concert violinist, and even our own ZeFrank (who taught Creative Acts at ITP). It costs about 5g's to go, and you have to be invited, but all of the money goes to charitable organizations. Anyway, they have free podcasts of past speakers, under TED TALKS, which I try to listen to.

This year, I was really interested in Theo Jansen's works (I first heard about him in Living Art). He does these amazing kinetic sculptures, and he's one of the speakers at TED this year. Also, Hod Lipson, who is doing some work in robotics. His robot like of looks like a starfish, which can be seen in the BusinessWeek slide show about TED. I think he's also created a DIY Desktop fabricator for less than 2g's. And also, Nick Sears, from ITP, will be talking about his thesis, the newer 3D orb, and presenting the initial iteration (shown at the 2006 ITP Winter Show).

Bill Clinton, Lawrence Lessig, Paola Antonelli, Zaha Hadid, Richard Branson, and They Might Be Giants will also speak and perform this year.

Here are some recommended links, some are repeated from above:

Podcasts of TEDTalks


BusinessWeek's Slide Show on some speakers [which include Theo Jansen, Hod Lipson, and Nick Sears]

BusinessWeek's story about TED

March 12, 2007

A Park in Brooklyn

It's been so cold lately. Being from California, I am getting used to this weather. It snowed on Wednesday briefly, and today, the high was mid-50's.



Pylones is a unique gift shop in SOHO, located on Spring Street, close to the 6 subway stop. I saw a very cute watch that had some carps printed on the band (reasonably priced $12-$14). Floral printed scissors and screen-printed and letterpress-printed cards.


Urban Polo Game

An innovative way of playing polo without horses. In a park near Chinatown on Broome and Forsythe, groups gather to play polo. Pretty cool.


March 13, 2007

Colbert Show

After waiting three months, we finally got tickets to the Colbert Show. We went and waited in line, and still didn't get in. They emailed us VIP tickets, which means we don't have to wait in line. We'll see...


March 14, 2007


How cool is this site? I was just complaining about how printed birthday cards and e-cards are so cheesy. Cliff Hahn, my cool friend (I swear he should start a magazine), recommended this site. This is for the geeks at heart.

GeoGreeting will allow you to send a personal message/e-card, but what is unique about this site is that the font are photos from satellite images of the top of buildings.

Here are some examples:




March 15, 2007

More Glamorous Lighting

...at the Maritime Hotel in Chelsea, right across the street from the Chelsea market.


Translating Video into a 3D Structure

For Fabricating Information, we used an open source software applications, Isosurf and Blender, to convert RAW grayscale images to x, y, z coordinates. I took an experimental video, and played with dropping frames, blurring, and cutting segments. To learn more about the process, click here.

Here's the video:

Here are the 3D structures that I came up with:


March 24, 2007

Prime Burger

Okay, I haven't done a food post for awhile, so here is one about burgers. Lately, we've been on a burger fix. Here are some burger places in New York that we've tried:

Prime Burger (51st and Madison)
Burger Joint (57th btwn. 6th and 7th Avenues)
New York Burger Co. (Park and 23rd Street)
Burger Heaven (53rd and Madison)

Have yet to try Shake Shack (Madison Square Park, 23rd and Madison)

From this list, Prime Burger was my favorite because they really know how to make a medium-rare burger. In my opinion, most burger places overcook a medium-rare burger but this place does it right. Check out the photos below. You can either sit at the bar or sit in these chairs that remind me of retro school desks. You have to slide the table top away to sit on the chairs. Service is cool, all the waiters and waitresses look like they've been working there forever (atmosphere is like Katz's Deli, The Pantry, Philippe's). I didn't watch this on Oprah, and I'm not quite sure if this is Sarah Jessica Parker endorsing this restaurant as herself or Carrie Bradshaw from Sex in the City or both, Sarah on Oprah promoting Sex and the City. Anyway, I'm going back. If you go, make sure you take cash because they don't take credit cards.

Same for Burger Joint. This place serves up burgers that taste similar to the infamous In and Out burger chain in California. They're pretty good, but there's always a long line. The milkshakes rock here.

Since the Shake Shack was closed, we decided to go to the New York Burger Co. This place has the best onion rings (I think they use a beer batter instead of bread crumbs). Their onion rings won a lot of awards. I had the Chicago burger, which was a burger dressed with Applewood bacon and Thousand Island. It was good, but like the other burgers except for Prime Burger, medium-rare was a bit overdone. I like there condiment selection: creamy horseradish sauce, honey-mustard, spicy ketchup, New York sauce (which tastes like A1 steak sauce plus molasses), barbecue sauce, and lots of pickles and onions. This place is a little bit pricey, but good.

Burger Heaven... let's just say that wasn't my favorite.


"...and, no, I didn't get sick."

March 25, 2007

Blow Darts & Marshmallow Peeps

I went to this party in Chelsea, and they had the most innovative party game, which was pretty intimidating and addicting simultaneously. So the hosts made these darts with nails and paper cones that you put into this metal rod, and blow. On the target side, they rounded up several yellow marshmallow peeps, which was later replaced by a lit candle (you have to put out the flame), and finally an M&M, to provide challenges for the more advanced player.

At first it seems pretty intimidating because of the "what if you miss?" factor. But after you blow, you and the dart hits the cardboard/particle board area, you start getting the hang of it. After about 5 times, you start getting addicted.

Here's a tip from Rives :
Hold the rod like a cue stick.

Let Veronica distract you with weird sounds, produced from her native Mexican tongue, and you will hit one of those bunnies.






March 27, 2007

Rapid Prototyping Fabrication - Fabricating Information


Rapid Prototyping Fabrication is a process that prints resin on x, y, and z axes. So from this video (screenshots below), each shot is a cross section of the artifact.

Here is the process:




Here are some colleagues pieces:

James N. Sears [derived from Mathematica]



Che Mangat


Stefan Hechenberger [derived using motion capture]


March 29, 2007

Chandelier Store

I always pass by this lighting store that sells a variety of chandeliers when I go to the Dumpling House on Elderidge and Grand. This photo is for Jane, who is designing a modular chandelier that would be affordable for all people.


About March 2007

This page contains all entries posted to keeyool.com in March 2007. They are listed from oldest to newest.

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