Tag Archives: flight

Nuit Blanche 2011 coverage

12 Oct
Suited up for the future.

Suited up for the future.

http://www.kindleproject.org/blog/2011/10/07/feature-on-flightpath-toronto/

How can a public spectacle help to shape our ideas of how we interact with nature, space and cities? Can it really offer a tangible route for creative alternatives to transportation, civic engagement and an investment in how we live with a less harmful impact on the natural world? These questions have been on my mind for years, and in the context of Kindle Project, it has recently become relevant. As we set out to explore the most current incarnations of unique collaborative efforts on the blog these past two months, we came across one such effort that got our attention. Flightpath Toronto took place on October 1 as a part of Toronto’s Nuit Blanche, where for one sleepless night the city was transformed by hundreds of artists for the sixth annual sunset-to-sunrise celebration of contemporary art.

SHIFT – A work in progress.

23 Dec

I’m working on a draft of an article for Shift, from the OCAD Student Press

This is going to be an epic deja vu for my thesis, and redemption. I finally get a chance to put together a cogent interpretation of all the research and thinking that went into my thesis project. The draft is below, and it’s still very early alpha stage.

///////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////


Man’s principle gift, and the only thing that distinguishes it from
other animals, is his ability to tell stories. The first words created
the world. Ancient stories gave meaning to the stars.


The following is a work of fiction. Any similarity to any person, or to any actual events, or institutions is intentional and
anything but coincidential.

In 1937 the future of airships came crashing to the ground in a fiery, smoking ruin, amid the famous cries of “oh, the humanity!”.

Since the Hindeburgh crash in Lakehurst Naval Station, New Jersey, only the ghosts of these once important vehicles are seen: floating vestiges of the past above the Super Bowl, or largely ignored, hawking electronics above Queens and Manhattan. A few are still ferrying tourists on harbour tours and over vineyards for wine tastings, but they are largely seen as curiousities, if seen at all. In most of my conversations with people with airships, the first reaction is perplexity, then incredulity.

But everyone I have met agrees with me eventually, that airships are needed in this world again.

Continue reading

Environmental Health Clinic

11 Dec

In November I had the opportunity to visit and speak at the Environmental Health Clinic in NYU’s Steinberg school, which is run by Natalie Jeremijenko.  The clinic deals with regular people’s concerns about the health of the environment, and through a consultation, they devise various experiments and interventions to both measure the health of the environment. The photo above was taken immediately after the talk. I had been drafted into the Imaginary Airforce to retrieve a dead woodpecker for examination. Why are we triking across Manhattan to retrieve a dead woodpecker? I’m just a draftee they don’t tell me these things The X Clinic or Environmental Health Clinic is researching bird wings to better build a flight simulator to allow people to experience flight viscerally again.  As commercial flight is a completely insulated experience, so simulated flight via the Strap on Flight Trainer [sorry I have a huge problem with this name. I think wearable is a much less alienating name.  I get the point, of course, but I don’t think it adds to the project] is experienced completely via the body, on a one to one basis.  That we should experience things physically should not be anything special, but these days the technological and digital mediation of experience is getting such that purely physical experiences are becoming academic.

I had a short discussion with Natalie about methods to construct this flight trainer in larger numbers.  The current design is fine for a beginner, but I also see limitations on finer controls. Control surfaces should be operated via the fingers in an advanced model, and perhaps a skin and bone construction.  I will try to find some time for modeling and prototyping in the New Year.

The dream that I dared not dream. Personal flight.

4 Nov

Do Birds Envy Anyone?

I don’t know, but all of us envy birds.  From the very beginnings, flight and imaginings of flight have drawn us forward.

It’s not very Taoist of me to envy birds for their flight, but is it really crazy for us to yearn to fly?  If those crazy individuals had not risked their lives and fortunes in the early days of flight, how would the development of flight looked like?  Certainly we would not have had the early weaponization of airplanes, and the subsequent commercialization/isolation of flight from the individual.

Experiments in personal flight, from Lego models to Second Life to real life.

http://www.ntticc.or.jp/Archive/2006/OpenSky/index_j.html

Second Life Moewe Glider.