prostheticknowledge:

Espresso Book Machine 

Publishing system can create retail-quality printed books from file to bound copy in five minutes – video below:

The patented Espresso Book Machine® (EBM) makes a paperback book in minutes, at point of need. Through its EspressNet® digital catalog of content, books can be ordered online or onsite at bookstores, libraries, and non-bookstore retailers. Over seven million in-copyright and public-domain titles are available on the network. The technology is also ideal for self and custom publishing.

More about the machine can be found here


T F m
September 30, 2012

emergentfutures:

3D Printer Form 1 Gets 6X Its $100K Funding Goal On Kickstarter… In One Day

To give you some perspective, Makerbots start at $2,199, and the most basic Form 1 pledge you can make on Kickstarter is $2,299, and includes “the full Form 1 package including the printer, 1L resin, and Form Finish Kit.” Clearly, Formlabs isn’t looking to undercut price, but then again, this isn’t another hobbyist 3D printer. Lobovsky believes his competition lies with the professional machines, and in terms of those costs, the Form 1 is a steal.

Full Story: TechCrunch

Paul Higgins: Update – checked site just now and at :

$1,107,516 raised

with 26 days to go


T F m
September 30, 2012

…there is no baseline default distribution against which we can measure redistribution. Instead, there are a multiplicity of possible distributions, none of which is more natural, or less interventionist, or whatever than any other. All of these possible distributions can, in a sense, be called redistributive relative to all the other possible distributions. But calling them redistributive tells us nothing more than that they differ from each other.


T F m
September 30, 2012

There was an episode, one of my favorite moments in Star Trek, when Captain Kirk looks over the cosmos and says, ‘Somewhere out there someone is saying the three most beautiful words in any language.’ Of course you heart sinks and you think it’s going to be, ‘I love you’ or whatever. He says, ‘Please help me.’ What a philosophically fantastic idea, that vulnerability and need is a beautiful thing.

Hugh Laurie (via thiscoffeedrenchedlife)

T F m
September 30, 2012

artandsciencejournal:

Darcy Whyte

Darcy Whyte, an inventor/artist, recently came up with drawing robots that can make portraits. Whyte was inspired to create this work after seeing a painting by Chuck Close. 

“He used color juxtaposition to achieve additive color mixing. I believe the color gamut is actually wider than a printing process or RGB monitor so the piece is very striking. The additive mixing combined with a unique color system gives an experience not seen with ordinary mixing of pigment or even textiles. It helped me realize that a painting robot was doable. And worth doing because it could be used explore different color systems and paint application methods. A machine would take care much of the labor content since it could do overnight and could run for days without a rest.”

On the way to a painting robot, he came up with one that draws. As Whyte describes how the drawing robot works, 

“The drawing robot moves a pen around a sheet of paper using a pair of motors and strings attached to little spools. The strings actually hold up the pen like a gondola. The motors are controlled by an open source micro-controller called Arduino. Image interpretation is done on a computer running open source software called processing.org. The processing.org environment interprets the jpeg image and comes up with commands to move the motors. Arduino sends the commands to the Arduino which in turn controls the motors through a stepper motor controller.  I’ve written some software for this and have also used some of the other software such as Sandy Nobles Polargraph software.” 

So what’s the next step? Well yesterday Whyte purchased the parts for his first painting robot including linear bearings and some power transmission components. To follow the project, and to learn more about the drawing robot, click here.

– Lee Jones 


T F m
September 30, 2012

Inkpad Drawing: Jonah02


T F m
September 30, 2012

PhoneGap | Home

PhoneGap | Home


T F m
September 29, 2012

floresuprm:

Reading the Agrippa Code

Twelve days after launching the Agrippa Challenge on July 10, 2012, Quinn Dupont made the official announcement that it had been “cracked.”

It was even easy, for those with the right kind of training in programming, mathematics, and cryptography– as becomes apparent from the published submissions. The link above leads to a great resource with fascinating analyses that help readers understand how the poem was encrypted and decrypted, as well as its self-destruct mechanism. So now that we know how it works, what do we do with that information?

We read it, of course. Since we are closer to the text (as discussed in previous postings on Agrippa) and can integrate the code into the reading.

In looking at some of the design choices made by the anonymous programmer, it seems that Agrippa’s “cryptographical weakness” leads to greater artistic strength. Like the flimsy locks one can find on diaries, the encryption used in this poem is more symbolic than safe. Its mechanisms are tied to strategies in the poem as a whole. For example, the use of genetic code informs two meaningful choices by the programmer:

  1. The use of 3-character blocks in the encryption of the text, weakens the encoding, allowing the encryption key to be discovered through a simple mathematical “brute-force attack.” This corresponds to the number of letters in the word “DNA:” an important motif for heredity in a poem centered on a photo album belonging to the speaker’s father.
  2. Genetics are also used to “destroy” the program by writing a fixed CTAG sequence (the bases of DNA) over 6,000 bytes of the program (see Bryan Carnes’ explanation), rendering it inoperable. Because it is fixed, however, the corrupted program can be “uncorrupted” and played again.

It is curious that genetic sequences are used to obfuscate and hide the text from the readers, when the purpose of such codes is to pass along information to future generations. The biological impulse to reproduce is echoed in the urge to photograph, preserve, and document one’s life in a photo album– as the speaker’s father has done through both biological and photographic mechanisms. For William Gibson, Dennis Ashbaugh, the anonymous programmer, and Kevin Begos, Jr. to remix biological, photographic, printing, and programming mechanisms in a poem (one of the oldest mnemonic technologies) is to design a work for more prolific reproduction than a drosophila fruit fly (see “The DNA Code”), especially after presenting the hacker community with such an open challenge.

The fact that the text of the poem is encoded to begin with, simply highlights something true of all digital and analog texts: they are always already encoded. Writing is a code, as are alphabets, natural languages, binary code, ASCII codes, high-level programming languages (like Macintosh Common Lisp used to program Agrippa), compiled assembly languages, and machine languages. This is also true in the analog world, as Martha Nell Smith demonstrated so well her in exploring Emily Dickinson’s manuscripts and their printings. From this perspective, the performance of a text, a.k.a. the act of reading, can be understood as a decoding into language, thought, experience.

To read some final thoughts on the cracked Agrippa code, copy and paste the following text into this JavaScript implementation of the Agrippa encryption program and decode it.

936E3D76CA13BA18F46AAD62C92FDE97829E88F8F0FDAA84
F4EC7DB4A5C3BA18F46A2B3B683357EDC21380B6C452F1E6
EEA313BA18F46A3DFAE7F5940AB6C4B1EA4CF2AF350C001E
6EC38495FD948DA4FA07F4790EC0677EA8BF7421CA351E44
F10534BA089DF7F9F0F7F9F07E2800


T F m
September 29, 2012

floresuprm:

A Close Reading of William Gibson’s “Agrippa” (part 3 of 3)

The link above is not to Agrippa, but to an important part of the poem: the linguistic and graphical codes extracted from the disk image by Freek Wiedijk— that is, the sequence of words arranged visually into line breaks, indentation, and stanzas, often referred to as the “text” of the poem– which has been in circulation online since it was posted on December 10, 1992. Why the text of the poem is more than just the words is discussed in my earlier postings: “Reading Agrippa” and “Agrippa as a Digital Object.” That being said, this posting will pay close attention to this linguistic text, keeping in mind the other texts and contexts that inform and complete this work known as Agrippa, and point out some meaningful patterns for readers to approach the poem with.

This autobiographical poem is divided into six parts, each of which focuses on a moment in the speaker’s life in which he becomes aware of the mechanisms that shape human experience, lending it the structure of a bildungsroman.

As a boy who discovers his deceased father’s Agrippa brand Kodak photo album he begins an exploration of his family history, relating to the photos as a boy used to chores might, observing things like “The grass needs cutting” and “Someone’s left a wooden stepladder out,” and imagining what tumbling down a large cone of sawdust would feel or smell like. Wood, its age and scent are prominent in this poem because they are powerful links to his rural past which he remembers more through smell– a sense closely tied to memory. In the second part, note how the discovery of an old gun, which twice fires by accident on this boy’s hands, “notched the hardwood bannister/ and brought a strange bright smell of ancient sap to life.”

Our speaker is older in the third part, and his examination of the photographs in the album demonstrate a different awareness of social and architectural mechanisms, such as the use of “charmless” “concrete and plywood” versus “sweet uneven brick that knew the iron shoes of Yankee horses.” Gibson contrasts horses as transportation vehicles of a rural past, with the cars his father knew (“1957 DeSOTO FIREDOME”) and those he came of age with (“Rocket Eighty-Eights”).

As a teenager in Toronto (in part IV), he is experimenting with guns, and becoming aware of the age and strength of different kinds of stone: the “limestone centuries” used to build “banks and courthouse,” the softness of a “shale pit” that can take bullets versus the “river rock” that can ricochet them back. These geological mechanisms resonate with the relative ages of cement, wood, and paper in this poem.

He shows awareness of race and racism in this and in part V, as he spends time in a bus station, expanded when the “colored restroom” was no longer needed because of the repeal of the Jim Crow laws. The extended magazine rack, where he found his calling as a writer, kept the mark of history by “smelling faintly and forever of disinfectant” and “of the travelled fears/ of those dark uncounted others.” It is in this space that we see the speaker understand the mechanisms of the law and its capacity to make people “dance/ or not to dance,” stop and go (in the traffic lights), remain or leave.

In the last part, the speaker goes off on his own, crossing national borders as light crosses the shutter on a camera into a space where it can inscribe its message. And yet the poem ends with a sense of freedom as the speaker finds himself in a larger world than he grew up in, experiencing cities like Toronto and Tokyo. Perhaps he has entered a larger, more complex mechanism, but his laughter signals that he knows how it works and is not afraid of what it will bring.

This poem is full of mechanisms: a camera, a gun, a bus station, and laws that govern segregation, international borders and they all have the power of “Forever/ Dividing that from this.” They all consist of enclosed spaces with openings that allow things to enter or exit obeying hidden processes, so it is fitting that the poem itself is a kind of “black box” from which a text emerges and into which it disappears without revealing its mechanism to readers.

The scheduled display serves three functions: it enforces a slow yet unstoppable reading pace, it creates anticipation for the next line, and it discourages rereading of the poem. This last one, combined with the poem’s self destruction, reinforces a singular experience of the text placing a burden on the reader’s memory to recall the poem– similar to experiencing life. And while one may inscribe one’s experience on paper, a computer, or photograph, what is produced is a crude mnemonic device, an extremely limited record of a rich reality full of sensory information and experiences.

And perhaps that is one thing Gibson, Ashbaugh, and Begos, Jr. sought to capture with their artist book and e-poem: a reminder of the evanescence of human experiences which can only be held in memory, despite the mechanisms we create to capture them.

Note: As should be evident from the links, these postings are built upon the ongoing research and documentation by Alan Liu and the team that created and lovingly continue to develop The Agrippa Files, and on Matthew G. Kirschenbaum’s writings and digital preservation efforts at MITH.

I look forward to producing a critical code reading of Agrippa, the day someone rises to the challenge and successfully cracks the code.


T F m
September 29, 2012

floresuprm:

A Close Reading of William Gibson’s “Agrippa” (part 3 of 3)

The link above is not to Agrippa, but to an important part of the poem: the linguistic and graphical codes extracted from the disk image by Freek Wiedijk— that is, the sequence of words arranged visually into line breaks, indentation, and stanzas, often referred to as the “text” of the poem– which has been in circulation online since it was posted on December 10, 1992. Why the text of the poem is more than just the words is discussed in my earlier postings: “Reading Agrippa” and “Agrippa as a Digital Object.” That being said, this posting will pay close attention to this linguistic text, keeping in mind the other texts and contexts that inform and complete this work known as Agrippa, and point out some meaningful patterns for readers to approach the poem with.

This autobiographical poem is divided into six parts, each of which focuses on a moment in the speaker’s life in which he becomes aware of the mechanisms that shape human experience, lending it the structure of a bildungsroman.

As a boy who discovers his deceased father’s Agrippa brand Kodak photo album he begins an exploration of his family history, relating to the photos as a boy used to chores might, observing things like “The grass needs cutting” and “Someone’s left a wooden stepladder out,” and imagining what tumbling down a large cone of sawdust would feel or smell like. Wood, its age and scent are prominent in this poem because they are powerful links to his rural past which he remembers more through smell– a sense closely tied to memory. In the second part, note how the discovery of an old gun, which twice fires by accident on this boy’s hands, “notched the hardwood bannister/ and brought a strange bright smell of ancient sap to life.”

Our speaker is older in the third part, and his examination of the photographs in the album demonstrate a different awareness of social and architectural mechanisms, such as the use of “charmless” “concrete and plywood” versus “sweet uneven brick that knew the iron shoes of Yankee horses.” Gibson contrasts horses as transportation vehicles of a rural past, with the cars his father knew (“1957 DeSOTO FIREDOME”) and those he came of age with (“Rocket Eighty-Eights”).

As a teenager in Toronto (in part IV), he is experimenting with guns, and becoming aware of the age and strength of different kinds of stone: the “limestone centuries” used to build “banks and courthouse,” the softness of a “shale pit” that can take bullets versus the “river rock” that can ricochet them back. These geological mechanisms resonate with the relative ages of cement, wood, and paper in this poem.

He shows awareness of race and racism in this and in part V, as he spends time in a bus station, expanded when the “colored restroom” was no longer needed because of the repeal of the Jim Crow laws. The extended magazine rack, where he found his calling as a writer, kept the mark of history by “smelling faintly and forever of disinfectant” and “of the travelled fears/ of those dark uncounted others.” It is in this space that we see the speaker understand the mechanisms of the law and its capacity to make people “dance/ or not to dance,” stop and go (in the traffic lights), remain or leave.

In the last part, the speaker goes off on his own, crossing national borders as light crosses the shutter on a camera into a space where it can inscribe its message. And yet the poem ends with a sense of freedom as the speaker finds himself in a larger world than he grew up in, experiencing cities like Toronto and Tokyo. Perhaps he has entered a larger, more complex mechanism, but his laughter signals that he knows how it works and is not afraid of what it will bring.

This poem is full of mechanisms: a camera, a gun, a bus station, and laws that govern segregation, international borders and they all have the power of “Forever/ Dividing that from this.” They all consist of enclosed spaces with openings that allow things to enter or exit obeying hidden processes, so it is fitting that the poem itself is a kind of “black box” from which a text emerges and into which it disappears without revealing its mechanism to readers.

The scheduled display serves three functions: it enforces a slow yet unstoppable reading pace, it creates anticipation for the next line, and it discourages rereading of the poem. This last one, combined with the poem’s self destruction, reinforces a singular experience of the text placing a burden on the reader’s memory to recall the poem– similar to experiencing life. And while one may inscribe one’s experience on paper, a computer, or photograph, what is produced is a crude mnemonic device, an extremely limited record of a rich reality full of sensory information and experiences.

And perhaps that is one thing Gibson, Ashbaugh, and Begos, Jr. sought to capture with their artist book and e-poem: a reminder of the evanescence of human experiences which can only be held in memory, despite the mechanisms we create to capture them.

Note: As should be evident from the links, these postings are built upon the ongoing research and documentation by Alan Liu and the team that created and lovingly continue to develop The Agrippa Files, and on Matthew G. Kirschenbaum’s writings and digital preservation efforts at MITH.

I look forward to producing a critical code reading of Agrippa, the day someone rises to the challenge and successfully cracks the code.


T F m
September 29, 2012