"Limor Fried was the sort of third-grader who took apart VCRs for fun. Gradually, she discovered that a hobby could become a degree -- a bachelor's and then a master's in electrical engineering and computer science at MIT. Finally, she discovered it could become a business. During her student years, Fried would post photographs and detailed instructions of her latest experiments in hardware hacking. First, she built an audience, and then a company, Adafruit Industries. ...
Fried's approach is sometimes called 'open-source hardware' -- similar to open-source software, but instead of the source code being open and malleable, the source materials are. Is there something anti-corporate in the way that she likes to encourage the hacking of consumer products?
'Absolutely not, I'm totally a staunch capitalist,' she says. She just thinks hardware hacking is good business. Adafruit has become something of a business incubator itself, inspiring others to start similar businesses."
(David Zax, Fast Company)
"Wow, here's something I'd never seen before: Monty Python animator Terry Gilliam discussing his animation techniques on Bob Godfrey's Do-It-Yourself Animation Show in 1974. Godfrey's show, which made animation accessible to the masses by taking the mystery out of the production process, was vastly influential and inspired an entire generation of kids in England, including Nick Park, who created Wallace & Gromit, Jan Pinkava, who directed the Pixar short Geri's Game, and Richard Bazley, an animator on Pocahontas, Hercules, and The Iron Giant.
In a day and age when more kids are interested in animating than ever before, it's a shame that TV shows (or Web series) that are fun and informative like this don't exist. The DIY advice that Gilliam gives in this episode is not only brilliant, but still as relevant today as back then: 'The whole point of animation to me is to tell a story, make a joke, express an idea. The technique itself doesn't really matter. Whatever works is the thing to use.'"
(Amid, 4 August 2011)
[Paper Critters is another Flash web application for creating and customising toys.]
"This thesis consists of a series of extensive projects which aim to explore a new designer role for fashion. It is a role that experiments with how fashion can be reverse engineered, hacked, tuned and shared among many participants as a form of social activism. This social design practice can be called the hacktivism of fashion. It is an engaged and collective process of enablement, creative resistance and DIY practice, where a community share methods and experiences on how to expand action spaces and develop new forms of craftsmanship. In this practice, the designer engages participants to reform fashion from a phenomenon of dictations and anxiety to a collective experience of empowerment, in other words, to make them become fashion-able. As its point of departure, the research takes the practice of hands-on exploration in the DIY upcycling of clothes through 'open source' fashion 'cookbooks'. By means of hands-on processes, the projects endeavour to create a complementary understanding of the modes of production within the field of fashion design. The artistic research projects have ranged from DIY-kits released at an international fashion week, fashion experiments in galleries, collaborative 'hacking' at a shoe factory, engaged design at a rehabilitation centre as well as combined efforts with established fashion brands. Using parallels from hacking, heresy, fan fiction, small change and professional-amateurs, the thesis builds a non-linear framework by which the reader can draw diagonal interpretations through the artistic research projects presented. By means of this alternative reading new understandings may emerge that can expand the action spaces available for fashion design. This approach is not about subverting fashion as much as hacking and tuning it, and making its sub-routines run in new ways, or in other words, bending the current while still keeping the power on."
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