Tag Archives: Creative

Model Car Photography


Michael Paul Smith makes brilliant photographs of (fictional) Egin Park (top), circa 1950’s. His setups (bottom) seamlessly integrate model- and full-scale.

Born in Pennsylvania in 1950, Michael has been building scale models for over 25 years. His model making skills have been accumulated through his varied job and life experiences; he has been a text book illustrator, wallpaper hanger and house painter, designer of museum displays, architectural model maker, and art director for retail stores. His love of the 20th Century has been a constant inspiration for all of his work.

Michael Paul Smith   [Flickr]


Is American Nonviolence Possible?


Writing in the New York Times, Todd May wonders if American nonviolence is possible and meditates on what it means:

We must understand first that nonviolence is not passivity.  It is instead creative activity.  That activity takes place within particular limits.  To put the point a bit simply, those limits are the recognition of others as fellow human beings, even when they are our adversaries.  That recognition does not require that we acquiesce to the demands of others when we disagree.  Rather, it requires that our action, even when it coerces the other (as boycotts, strikes, sit-ins and human blockades often do), does not aim to destroy that other in his or her humanity.  It requires that we recognize others as fellow human beings, even when they are on the other side of the barricades.

This recognition limits what we can do, but at the same time it forces us to be inventive.  No longer is it a matter of bringing superior firepower to bear.  Now we must think more rigorously about how to respond, how to make our voices heard and our aims prevail.  In a way it is like writing a Shakespearean sonnet, where the 14-line structure and iambic pentameter  require thoughtful and creative work rather than immediate and overwhelming response.

To recognize someone’s humanity is, in perhaps the most important way, to recognize him or her as an equal. Each of us, nonviolence teaches, carries our humanity within us.  That humanity cannot always be appealed to.  In some cases, as with the tragedy at Sandy Hook, it can even become nearly irrelevant.  However, in all but the most extreme cases nonviolence summons us to recognize that humanity even when it cannot serve as the basis for negotiation or resolution.  It demands that we who act do so with a firm gaze upon the face of the other.  It demands the acknowledgment that we are all fragile beings, nexuses of hope and fear, children of some mother and perhaps parents to others:  that is, no more and no less than fellow human beings in a world fraught with imponderables.

Is American Nonviolence Possible?   [NYTimes]

Airline Safety

I flew Pegasus Airlines in Turkey a few weeks ago, and this was the pre-flight safety video. Aboard the flight, it was subtitled in English as well, but I can’t find that one here (though you can probably guess at what’s being said). I haven’t paid attention to one of those in a long time…

Supercomputer Made from Raspberry Pis and Lego


A team of computer scientists at Southampton University in the UK has built a supercomputer from Raspberry Pi boards using Lego blocks to build the racks. The team included six-year-old James Cox, the son of project lead Professor Simon Cox, who provided “specialist support on Lego and system testing.”

Professor Cox comments: “As soon as we were able to source sufficient Raspberry Pi computers we wanted to see if it was possible to link them together into a supercomputer. We installed and built all of the necessary software on the Pi starting from a standard Debian Wheezy system image and we have published a guide so you can build your own supercomputer.”

The racking was built using Lego with a design developed by Simon and James, who has also been testing the Raspberry Pi by programming it using free computer programming software Python and Scratch over the summer. The machine, named “Iridis-Pi” after the University’s Iridis supercomputer, runs off a single 13 Amp mains socket and uses MPI (Message Passing Interface) to communicate between nodes using Ethernet. The whole system cost under £2,500 (excluding switches) and has a total of 64 processors and 1Tb of memory (16Gb SD cards for each Raspberry Pi). Professor Cox uses the free plug-in ‘Python Tools for Visual Studio’ to develop code for the Raspberry Pi.

Professor Cox adds: “The first test we ran – well obviously we calculated Pi on the Raspberry Pi using MPI, which is a well-known first test for any new supercomputer.”

Engineers Build Supercomputer Using Raspberry Pis, Lego   [ParityNews]


Another cool video concept from Ok Go!

[Thanks, Alex!]

Back to the Future 2

More great shots from professional photographer Irina Werning’s Back to the Future project, wherein she recreates old photographs of people in the original locations. Above is Fer in Buenos Aires in 1981 and then in 2011. Below is Christoph in Berlin in 1990 and then again in 2011.


The submissions for a really cool competition hosted by Booooooom.com are in. People were asked to recreate photographically any work of art. The submissions ranged, of course, from the very literal to the downright whimsical. Above is a remake of Vincent van Gogh’s ‘Self-Portrait 1889’ by Seth Johnson, and below is a remake of Grant Wood’s American Gothic by Jesse John Hunniford.

You can see all of the submissions, as well as the original paintings here.