Link Latte #17

The week cometh; the week goeth.

Crossing the radar… ripples spreading then receding…

1) Blown by unseen winds

Bet I’m the only person in the world who knows where the quote “Blown by unseen winds” comes from.

Anyway, this is not dissimilar to the wind thing from ages ago… which obviously I’m not going to be able to find, because “wind” isn’t a googlable word. It was like the 3rd or 4th thing I posted… which also doesn’t help, because there isn’t a crono… oh… hang on… there is. This.

Still. Ungooglability on account of being a straw in a haystack rather than a needle. Nick Taylor is ungooglable. There are loads of us. We grown on trees…. only I now appear to have two entries on the first page – a previous incarnation has become famous, which is a bit of a worry tbh, because I was taking the piss and have moved on a bit etc.

2) Little Expensoid Arm-bot

A snip at $24,000 – I get this vague feeling that the future of reprappery is something like this… but which can “see”. This one can’t see, so the engineering has to be really really tight.

It’s got those weird little “go in any direction” wheels, which seem like a massive piece of over-engineering to me. They were invented by the segway guy who invented a really expensive solution to “walking”, and now there’s a really expensive solution to “the wheel” – though it looks like someone’s using it. Bet you could take a couple of k off the price of this thing by using… well… wheels.

3) Water-Based Touch-Screen

Like a cross between The Abyss and a generic Sci-fi Waving-Arms-Around-Interface. One of those things that is photogenic, so put into movies about the future, so people want one in real life.

Like product-design copying sci-fi, only the actual thing got invented before the sci-fi, and it isn’t actually a product, just a thing someone’s made. Maybe dolphins could use it?

4) A bunch of software.

a) Libox.

Which is a P2P file-synching/sharing app. I wonder if it can be encrypted. I wonder if it works via blue-tooth or some non-centralised thing. Dvice seem to think it will be another blow to the copyright-cartels… I guess it could… but only in terms of swapping stuff within one-degree-of-separation – which is a little different from dialing up whatever you want – anywhere, anytime.

An aspect of one-degree-of-separation stuff though is it kindof comes with recommendation built in.

Whatever – the Copyright Cartels have become such a threat to the democracy now, that I think we need to do whatever it takes to put them out of business.

b) Menu Search Engine Mashup


Someone’s used an app called Evernote to scan all their local menus, which they can then search. Simple enough… hang on… “search?”.

I’d never really looked at evernote before. Might have to give it a go – because from the sounds of it, it automatically OCRs anything you upload – and that could be well useful, because people keep sending me shite through the post, and this would be a really good way of indexing it. If it works. I’ll have to give it a look

c) apropos of that, another really fast book scanner.

Which as far as I can tell is a bit of software… and a really fast camera – but I’m not entirely sure that the one I just bought isn’t one of those. Well… it goes up to 60 shots a second, with a really fast shutter-speed. Might be able to do it. Dunno. Maybe you could flip slower.

5) Creepy Alien Wall Thing

There’s a video on the site, but I can’t get it to embed. Looks like alien-egg-petals opening.

Alien had the best/worst movie monster ever invented – a composite of about 8 different human phobias, including a bunch of hightly freudian ones. A perfect example of my theory about what art is – exaggerated human resonances – dancing a two-step down the line between the impossible and the-girl-next-door. There’s nothing that the Aliens monster does that doesn’t happen in the… animal kingdom, including paralysing prey so it can be later eaten by hatchlings. Crrrreeeeepppyyyyy.

The fact that this has kindof created a secondary set of phobias… egg-petals opening, is something else I think. Maybe it’s just me.

6) Musical instruments made out of paper

Can’t remember where that one came from *(yes I can) – for what it’s worth, I know I’m not really the cutting-edge any more, but I’m pretty sure that a guy wearing a jumper like that doesn’t get to decide what’s cool.

Or maybe he does. What do I know? I’m still wearing my girlfriend’s shirt from 23 years ago. This one.

Anyway, there’s another thing over here that claims to be a paper piano


although to me it looks more like a box. The interesting thing about these though is the escape of the interface into… the mundane I suppose. I have a feeling that the long-term future of this isn’t ubiquitous sensors but ultra-perceptive behaviour-recognition software connected to CCTV cameras – a bit like that new Wii-esque game from Microsoft.. All of us living in our own personal panopticons. A bubble of outsourced self-awareness.

7) A Hell of a lot of CDs


8 ) USB Typewriter

Similar sort of thing really.

1 Comment » for Link Latte #17
  1. This latte is a strong one! whoosh!? What? I never click on the links in these or I’d be online for 80 hrs a week but the very idea of a gui on the surface of water kind of opens up my mind.