Archive for February, 2009

Technology is not too advanced

February 11, 2009

…we are just too lazy to learn it all. But not this guy. Behold Thomas Thwaite’s Toaster Project.

So far, he’s only gotten as far as refining a bit of iron, but he intends to create a working toaster *from scratch*. I am seriously humbled that someone would attempt to recreate a modern convenience using the earth around him. He even gets in the obvious Hitchiker’s Guide reference, which is timely, since Peter and I were discussing the same idea a few days ago. If you were transported into the past, or into some distant civilization, what pieces of modernity could you bring to improve the quality of life there? Peter, being a computer programmer, was afraid he’d share a similar fate with Arthur Dent. I figured I could muster a steam engine (I would use only agricultural-byproduct biomass fuel though, knowing more about climate change than the original inventors). But this guy. When the zombie apocalypse leaves us all eating bloodied wonderbread, this man will have toast!

Thomas kind of reminds me of the “Nuclear Boy Scout” who tried to make a breeder reactor from smoke detectors. He’s also kind of my hero, but I won’t admit it because the feds are watching 🙂

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Youtube is beautiful

February 10, 2009

Actually most of it isn’t, but once in a while I catch something that makes me believe we’re entering a new renaissance:

(Hopefully I can continue posting after nearly a year of silence without raising too many eyebrows)