Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Brainstorming again... on students, crafting, and outreach

I'm a happy camper today -- I had lunch with Jez, who's the new Outreach Coordinator! wheee- I love Jez, not just because she's a crocheter, into yarn, and crazy-infectious enthusiastic about all sorts of stuff.

And we're going to do an Official Library Outreach Activity with yarn! Don't know what, specifically, but as usual I've got all sorts of ideas.

I'm thinking about some sort of contest, with gift certificates for prizes, that would bring crafting into the 21st Century.

I'm thinking about stuff like I see on MakeZine. Like the 30-minute Hovercraft. I've actually seen kids on the Harvey Mudd campus with remote-control hovercraft. Imagine walking along, hearing a strange noise, coming around the corner and seeing this strange contraption coming at you. And then seeing the kid with the remote control a few yards away.

How could we combine technology like that with old-skool crafts? How could I combine a hovercraft with knitting, fer cryin' out loud?

hmm... but what if a sweater had circuits? What would it do?

I can see a knitted hat, with solar cells that would power a fan, or sunshade.

Maybe lace holes that would get tighter as the temps got cold, so the shawl would be warmer.

OK, we'd have to have teamwork here, to combine old technologies (knitting, crochet) with new (electronics). I'm seeing social networking here...

ooo. How about a camouflage beer bottle; press a button and it sprouts a Coke-can sweater?

Or origami that folds itself? Or moves in some way?

A colleague just sent me this website from MIT: Eric Demaine's Linkage Animations. Wouldn't it be cool to program an origami mobile to move like that?


But only for a while... (bwaa hahahaha!)


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