Sponsored by the DIYZ® app
I love the idea of combining modern technology with natural textures. I keep my tablet in a case made from an old linen-covered notebook, and my sleek and shiny DSLR in a worn brown leather bag. So, I wanted to make a simple place to house my smartphone, while warming it up a bit. I went with the most natural thing I could think of: a big slab of forest tree.
I like this design for a DIY wooden smartphone charging station because it fits the charging cable nicely, but it isn't stuck in place, so you can remove and use it elsewhere without the stand.
Enough talk! Let's make one!
It might not happen with every smartphone and car stereo combo, but if you know what we're talking about, this tip is for you. You get in, you fasten your seat belt, you turn the car on, you plug in your phone, and....
THE. SAME. &*$%. SONG. COMES. ON. EVERY. SINGLE. TIME.
Of course, you've figured out why this devilish contrivance occurs. It's the song who's title comes first alphabetically in your library. On my phone, it's A.M. 180 by Grandaddy; on my wife's, it's Vampire Weekend's A-Punk. And I actually And it just... starts playing, at whatever volume your stereo is set to.
Here's how to stop that first song from playing when your plug your phone into your car:
If you getting a ton of use out of the cord taco you made with the last blog post, my guess is that your probably going to get even more use out of this DIY leatherworking project.
As always, if you don't feel skilled enough to pull off any of the steps below, you can check out this beginners guide to get you going.
I — admittedly — was in the habit of just grabbing my computer and carrying it around. Its home was wherever I left it...unprotected. Stupid, I know. I’m pretty careful with my stuff, especially when it costs as much as a laptop, but even if you can control you're behavior, you can’t always predict what
For those of you who have already made the switch to wireless earbuds (thanks Apple), tangled cords aren’t really an issue you have to deal with any more.
But, if your like me and carry around "old school" wired earbuds in your pocket, you understand the wad of knots you pull out every time you go digging. And, though some may appreciate the eternal struggle (and contemporary art sculpture?) it really doesn’t have to be that way.
This simple DIY earbud/headphone/cord organizer keeps your cables knot free and still fits sleekly in your pocket. Using it is easy: all you have to do is wrap your earbuds around the organizer and snap it
I'm a big fan of internet radio. It's customizable, high quality, and increasingly easy to use. Here's a project for those with a bit of tech savvy mixed in with your DIY prowess.
It's still possible to be a man and have a Smart Watch. Here are 3 ways to embrace your inner geek while staying true to your dapper style.
My friend Ryan had a problem; a problem with stealing his wife Chelsea's Nook eReader so as to gorge on the entire Game of Thrones series. So, he snagged his own Nook Simple Touch, and figured out a way to make a custom leather case and cover with no special sewing or leatherworking skills, and he didn't even have to pay for materials.
Vancouver, WA-based designer and programmer Nathan Pryor asks, "What do you get when you combine a pumpkin with the classic video game Tetris? Pumpktris! Fully playable, embedded in a pumpkin."
Oh, and get this: the pumpkin's stem acts as the joystick.
The DIY scene has certainly changed in the last ten years, and a big component of that shift is the availability of small-scale manufacturing tools like CNC routers, laser cutters, and most recently, 3-D printers. Now, loyal readers know that ManMade is not a hacker/maker/tech site, but rather, a craftier companion to those. But, anyone in the scene can attest that these things are popping up everywhere, so I figure it might be good to learn about 'em a bit.
Popular culture is filled with killer robots, most famously The Terminator. Unpopular culture, science fiction novels, are filled with all sorts of robots.
Isaac Asimov, in his years of writing science fiction, wrote a lot about robots. He wrote so much about robots he ended up having a series of laws about how robots should and would function. They go a little something like this:
- A robot may not injure a human being or, through inaction, allow a human being to come to harm.
- A robot must obey any orders given to it by human beings, except where such orders would conflict with the First Law.
- A robot must protect its own existence as long as such protection does not conflict with the First or Second Law.
Not too bad. I would have put in a fourth law about robots needing to look super cool, and always have guns for arms, but what do I know? I will say this. So far, deep into the future years of the 2000s, i have not seen one frightening robot... until today.
The folks at Hunch have been researching the different ways the Mac OS and Windows users understand themselves and the computer products they use everyday. They've presented their findings in a fascinating infographic that's definitely worth checking out.
Of course, exercise is good for you. Movement is best. Being sedentary all day is, of course, the opposite. Duh, right?
But it's not just non-activity that's harmful. The actual position of sitting, like in a chair, is, basically, the worse thing you can do to your body. Even if you engage in regular exercise, even daily, it might not be enough to counteract the damage from resting on your rump all the livelong day.
I'ma go out on a limb here, and say that knowing how to solder is an essential skill for any creative person. Make no mistake: I know nothing about capacitors and breadboards, nor programming or arduinos. In fact, part of the reason I founded ManMade was to complement that version of the maker/hacker website by bringing in less tech-heavy approaches to creativity.
But, regardless of whether or not I'm ever gonna build a robot (I'm not), I think knowing how to solder is super important for DIY projects. Making a lamp from plumbing pipes really benefits from knowing your wires are gonna stay together inside the thing; just this weekend, I retrieved my first "grownup" instrument - a Peavey Fury bass guitar in all its 1994 red/white glory - from a family member who'd borrowed it years ago, thinking it broken, and I fixed it just by soldering some ground wires that had come loose.
It is, as this free downloable comic book from Andie's Log states, easy.
Today's is the first sunny, snow-free day we've had since November. Don't get me wrong, it's only 34° F out there, but I don't care. I can see the grass, albeit khaki, and the sun. On the same day. Hallelujah.
So, I'm already scheming about how I can get outside. Anyone that knows me can attest that I'm not much of an athlete, and I'm a total wreck with a basketball, but I'm a pretty active cyclist, and certainly have been jonesing for the roads to clear so I can ride.
And, in 2011, even the most natural of tasks like using our muscles to move around can take a technological spin. On a bike ride, I have a digital, wireless bike computer that tells me how fast I'm going and keeps track of other stats. And when I'm not riding on the trail, I use GPS on my phone to track my route, elevation, speed, etc. So, while sometimes technology can hinder your desire to get exercise (looking at you, Netflix), it also has the potential to improve it greatly.
John wanted to watch Watson take on the Jeopardy champs this week, but wasn't a cable subscriber. With only 30 minutes til the IBM behemoth was set to swamp Ken and Brad, he got creative...and watched the show, for free!
There are millions of computers produced each year...let's hope the cursors are harvested with sustainable practices.
And don't even get me started on the emissions of the spinning beach ball of death factory.