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This is my latest MOC: A LEGO Unikitty! It is 180cm tall and features a rotating head and sparkly eyes. It took several month from planning to finish and never used as many pink bricks in my life. Still, the color combination is just cute. The neck uses my LEGO compatible...Read More
The Govenor General, Jerry Mateparae, visited the HIT Lab NZ on March 9th, 2016. We presented our main research areas to him, including Human-Robot Interaction. Jerry Mateparae seemed to enjoy the performance of our robots, but his Aides-de-Camp looked, well, I am not sure how...Read More
To rotate an axial load LEGO developed the turn table. For light loads this works great but the friction increases dramatically with heavy loads. This thrust ball bearing uses standard LEGO balls to transform the friction into rotations. This allows the two disks to easily...Read More
Sounds easy, I wish it was!
Many products are being sold that are suppose to increase your energy. Unless your food is completely indigestible, this will always be true. Food by definition has calories which provide you with energy. But food manufactures have moved on and this trivial definition of energy is rarely used. These days energy food typically contains Caffeine. In particular energy drinks, such as Red Bull, Mother and V contain a considerable dose.Read More
We have just published a nice study in which we developed and tested Emotion Rating Figurines (ERF) that allows you to assess emotional responses. The figurines are base on LEGO Minifigures. We developed a questionnaire sheet and also a physical model.Read More
The IFIA World Congress and Innovation Conference in Stockholm invited me to give a speech on why innovations fail in academia. I gave this speech on August 25th, 2015. I hope you enjoy my presentation.
The LEGO Galaxy Explorer is amongst one of the most popular sets of all times. In 1980 LEGO published the Idea Book 6000 that contained an alternative build for the Galaxy Explorer. The building instructions were sketchy at best. I built the Galaxy Explorer 6000 model for the Moonbase 42 at the Christchurch Brick Show 2015 and I also created an LDD file for it. The building instructions are available here. It has been great fun to re-create this spaceship from my childhood. I hope you enjoy it.
This LEGO great ball contraption consists of a module that sorts the balls by its color and a train module that returns the balls to the start. Both modules use Mindstorms EV3s to control the motors. The train EV3 controls and original LEGO RC Train motor using a DIY cable.
Apple created many innovative software solutions and continued to improve them by adding more and more useful feature. With Aperture they even innovated a whole new class of applications that Adobe had to catch up to.
Recently, however, Apple is moving the opposite way. They keep on dumbing down their own software and hardware. No, we are not going to talk about iWork for iCloud or the new MacBook.
Today I am going to talk about the new Photo software for Mac OS X. It lacks many features from Aperture and even fallen behind iPhoto in some regards.
iPhoto ’08 introduced several useful features, such as events. When you import photos it would automatically try to group them into events. Before you manually had to do this by using albums. And this is exactly what I used to do. I would create albums and organized them in folders first by location and then by date. The arrival of the Events function relieved me of creating and maintaining this structure.
The new Photos app does not longer support Events. We are back at having to group our photos manually. Moreover, all the Events in iPhoto are being transformed into plain Albums in Photos.
From a theoretical point of view there is little difference between Albums and Events. You can use Albums to resemble Events. But in iPhoto an image could only be in one Event. Events therefore provided a basic structure for users to manage their ever increasing photo collections. The value of such structures cannot be underestimated. A photo collection with no structure is completely useless since it is impossible to find anything in it. The structures of Events, Places and Faces enabled users to enjoy their collection.
Google just recently introduced their new cloud based Photos services and they seem to understand the importance for an organizational structure. Google automatically groups photos such as “Beach” or “Cars”. Google actually tries to understand what is shown in your photos. It thereby enables us to browse through our collections in a new way. Not to mention that Google is offering unlimited storage space.
Apple, please become smart again!Read More
Today Prime News, a national New Zealand TV show, reported on our LEGO Fireman Robot. The New Zealand Herald also covered the story in more depth.