Archive | April, 2008

…The Splinter is real?


Remember the Splinter, the all wood supercar that looked like nothing more than a clever design mock up?

Apparently it’s quite a bit more than that, as Joe Harmon Design has begun fabrication, and the body is already starting to take shape.

The car’s frame and driveline are based on a central rigid tube section with the suspension and other necessary parts from a C4 Corvette mounted to it. However, as much as possible will be kept in wood form for authenticity’s sake.

The engine is a Northstar V8 run backwards, with the exhaust and intake sides switched around. Intakes sit underneath the cylinder banks, and two roots style superchargers feed air in through individual intercoolers

The wooden component fabrication process includes building a mold/frame, and then laminating layers of veneer into the desired shape.

Check out the site for more details, including live webcam shots and a building blog.

[Joe Harmon Design – Splinter]

[Building The Splinter]

[Via: Jalopnik]

…Team Fortress 2 has been Gold Rush Updated?

Team Fortress 2 Gold Rush Update

The Team Fortress 2 “Gold Rush Update” has just been unleashed by Valve, and it includes a new Gold Rush Map, a new Gameplay Type, a unique Item System, and 36 new Medic Achievements.

    Gold Rush is an entirely new level featuring a new gameplay style called Payload. The level is split into three separate areas with intermediate capture zones inside of each major chapter. The teams are split between offense (Blu) and defense (Red) similar to Dustbowl. The goal for the Blu team is to push the bomb payload through the level until it reaches the next capture point, eventually destroying all three of Red’s major bases. Blu pushes the cart through the level by standing near it, with the cart moving faster when more people are close by. If no one has pushed the cart forward after 30 seconds, the cart will begin to move backward until it is pushed forward again.

The new item system is going to be rolling out over the next year, and players will be able to earn three new and unique items for each character by earning some or all of that character’s new achievements.

The new medic achievements are quite varied, and range from Quadruple Bypass (Heal a teammate who’s taking fire from 4 enemies at once.) and Play Doctor (In a team with no Medics, be first to switch to Medic after a teammate calls “Medic!”, and then heal 500 health.) to Big Pharma (Assist a Heavy in killing 20 enemies, where neither of you die.) and Bedside Manner (Be healing a teammate as he achieves an achievement of his own.)

Lastly, if you haven’t yet played Team Fortress 2 (and you really should) then you can try it out this weekend from May 2-4, during which you can play the entire game for free through Steam.


[Team Fortress 2 – Gold Rush Update]

…It’s Tuner Tuesday: The Uno?

The Uno

The Uno is unlike anything you’ve ever seen before.

By using gyroscope technology similar to the Segway, it balances on two wheels that sit right next to each other. The Uno goes forward when you push your body weight forward, and backwards when you push your body weight backward. The further you lean, the more the Uno tilts, and the faster it accelerates.

Apparently it’s so simple to operate that there are no controls except for an on-off switch. The gyro tells the ECU how much to accelerate automatically, and the proper amount of power is delivered to the wheels through electric motors, one for each wheel.

The body and frame are both custom designed, with a Yamaha R1 serving as the starting point. After prepping the frame, the molding took just six weeks to complete.

And if that’s not enough for you, then keep in mind that the entire thing was designed by Ben J. Poss Gulak, an 18-year-old who taught himself CAD on a home computer using Google’s free SketchUp tool to create the initial idea.

Could this be the future of motorcycle design?

[The Uno]

[Via: Motorcycle Mojo Magazine]

…Pinball is a dying art?


Chicago’s Stern Pinball is the last manufacturer of pinball machines in the world.

Hard to believe, isn’t it?

Unfortunately, an ADD age and the move towards electronic entertainment now means that just 10,000 of the machines are produced annually, and most head towards the game rooms and basements of private homes, rather than the arcades and bowling alleys of yore.

    Though pinball has roots in the 1800s game of bagatelle, these are by no means simple machines. Each one contains a half-mile of wire and 3,500 tiny components, and takes 32 hours to build — as the company’s president, Gary Stern, likes to say, longer than a Ford Taurus.

Can pinball survive much longer?

For the sake of children and childhoods everywhere, I can only hope that the answer is yes.

[New York Times – For a Pinball Survivor, the Game Isn’t Over]

[Via: Gizmodo]

…You Suck At Photoshop has been interviewed?

You Suck At Photoshop

If you liked the You Suck At Photoshop series, then be sure to check out Time Magazine’s interview with co-creators Matt Bledsoe and Troy Hitch.

    “It was meant to be a one-off thing,” said Hitch. “But two weeks later, we checked into YouTube and saw that it had 50,000 page views. We went to Rob and said, ‘Hey, we might take a sabbatical from Tim after Tim.’ ” They launched the second episode of Photoshop and within five days, it had 400,000 page views. Digg dug the site, BoingBoing boinged it, and LaughingSquid inked the deal. A star was born.

[Time Magazine – The Photoshop Guys Revealed!]