Big Picture Science – What Do You Make Of It?

by Gary Niederhoff on June 23, 2014


Big Picture Science – What Do You Make Of It?

You are surrounded by products. Most of them, factory-made. Yet there was a time when building things by hand was commonplace, and if something stopped working, well, you jumped into the garage and fixed it, rather than tossing it into the circular file.

Participants at the Maker Faire are bringing back the age of tinkering, one soldering iron and circuit board at a time. Meet the 12-year old who built a robot to solve his Rubik’s Cube, and learn how to print shoes at home. Yes, “print.”

Plus, the woman who started Science Hack Day … the creation of a beard-slash-cosmic-ray detector … the history of the transistor … and new materials that come with nervous systems: get ready for self-healing concrete.

(Photo is a model of the first transistor built in 1947 at the Bell Telephone Labs in New Jersey that led to a Nobel Prize. Today’s computers contain many million transistors … but they’re a lot smaller than this one, which is about the size of a quarter.)

Listen to individual segments here:
Part 1: Lucy Beard – 3D Printed Shoes
Part 2: Mark Miodownik – Stuff Matters
Part 3: Steve Nelson – Beer2-D2
Part 4: Dan Lankford – A History of Tinkering
Part 5: Ariel Waldman – Science Hack Day
Part 6: Saurabh Narain – Lego Rubik’s Cube Solver

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