Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Massive robot dragon fights a giant spider in Beijing's Olympic Park

Check out this performance of puppetry on a grand scale. The giant robots perform a show loosely based on Chinese mythology. The puppets were created by the French company, La Machine.

Learn more about the Robot dragon and giant spider on the BBC News web site.

[ Thanks Bill! ]

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Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Stairway from Heaven - musical holiday-themed automaton with plans

Our good friend here at The Automata Blog, John Hutchinson, created this holiday-themed automaton featuring an integrated music box. If you start now, you will have a one-of-a-kind gift for someone this holiday season. Full plans and instructions will be featured in the Holiday 2014 edition of Scroll Saw Woodworking & Crafts. The holiday issue is also known as Issue 57, which will soon be available at booksellers and will eventually be available on the Fox Chapel Publishing web site. Should you be unable to get it in time, here is a link to their their past holiday issues. You are sure to find a suitable project/gift idea among them!

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Monday, October 13, 2014

Paper models form the old Toy Shop computer program available online!

The Toy Shop – 20 Marvelous Mechanical Models
Back in the 1980s there was a program for the Commodore 64 computer called 'The Toy Shop'. The program allowed you to print out designs to make twenty paper models, many of which were kinetic. The models included trucks, airplanes, a carousel, a sundial, flying toys, a catapult, a working scale, several machines, a zoetrope and this amazing mechanical bank!

A wonderful web page documents all of the projects from The Toy Shop program, allowing you to download both the patterns and the instructions for free. Here is where you can view, download and make the 20 assorted projects from The Toy Shop software.

For more excellent paper models check out Paper Models That Move: 14 Ingenious Automata, and More. This book includes 14 whimsical projects for making automata out of cardstock. It is well-illustrated and explain the use of levers, gears, cranks, and other devices. The cut-and-assemble components allow papercrafters of modest skill and experience to build these models.

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