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Author's Note: Meet Your Maker > The Stuff We're Gonna Build - Pg. 9

MAKE: PROJECTS Eccentric Cubicle noticing that there are limitless resources in unexpected places. You'll experience a paradigm shift in your relationship with "Makin' Stuff." Your friends will eventually get used to accompanying you while you rummage around in thrift shops, scrap yards, and dumpsters. Call it "The Philosophy of Improvisational Fabrication." It's the Maker Way. Maple Mike A desktop simulation of the perfect golf swing and targetable projectile acceleration in one easy to use/easy to build project. Because golf is a rung on the ladder to boardroom success. So are targetable projectiles. DeskBeam Bass Four strings of butt-shakin' bottom-end, harnessing the acoustic resonance of your desk as a speaker system. The first half of the "Desktop D 'n' B Audience Participation Muzak" series. The Gysin Device Harness your subconscious for enhanced creativity: Brion Gysin's lucid dreaming induction device, as popularised by William Burroughs (and notoriously implicated in Kurt Cobain's unfortunate demise). Not a whole lot to add, other than "does what it says on the packet." Now you can have the same experience in the comfort of your own cubicle. Sitar not included. iBlow USB Bubble Machine Convince IT that it has something to do with your PC's liquid cooling system. Liquid Light Meets the Disco Skull These popular catalog items from a slightly trippier parallel universe version of ThinkGeek add necessary ambience to casual Fridays. Throwback 60s psychedelic liquid lighting, with a postmillennial tech upgrade and hot-damn-that's-cool rotating mirror-tiled disco skull dispersion mechanism. Name one other project that seamlessly incorporates high-intensity L.E.D.s, glass cutters, the much-maligned glue gun, and barbeque rotisseries. G'wan . . . try. Haze-o-Matic 3000 Bring "the fog of war" to your contract negotiations. Befuddle your supervisor. Intimidate the interns. A mechanism that's as inherently cool as a fog machine needs to be Goldbergianly complex. It's subassemblies gone wild, like you've never seen them before. Hammerhead Live Mechanical Percussion Sequencer Programmable acoustic drum sequencer. It's Jules Verne's TR-808. With hammers. No, really. The second half of the "Desktop D 'n' B Audience Participation Muzak" series. The Stuff We're Gonna Build . . . which brings us to this book, and the projects contained herein. First off, I'd like to point out that we need another DIY Ambient Orb project like we need a new hole drilled in our skulls (which is not to say that there isn't a time and place for recreational trepanning, but that, of course, is another book altogether). Ditto for Lego X-Y Plotters, and I think I speak for all of us when I passionately plead for a five-year moratorium on cheap digital camera mods. Do not get me started on iPod accessories. The intent is to infuse the new-school Maker community with a therapeutic dose of slightly non-Euclidean engineering, classic shop techniques, and surreally interpreted physics -- projects intended to make people say "It does WHAT?" What's not to love? These are projects with balls, albeit an uneven number of them. In a parallel universe, three doors down and across the street, these devices are de facto standard office cube accessories, available at your local big-box business supply outlet. As we're not fortunate enough to exist in such an enlightened timeline, we're gonna have to build 'em ourselves. Remember, they laughed at Philo T. Farnsworth too. Active Deskchop Sharp blade. Gravity. Unsuspecting cigars. Carrots. Bratwurst. The occasional pepperoni stick. Over-engineered and cunningly executed, this postmillennial version of the classic French revolutionary femme fatale is the last word in cigar accessories. Or desktop snack choppers. BallistaMail Hail the Ballista! The Greco-Roman Cruise missile: a big- ass torsion-powered crossbow, good for launching spears, javelins and the occasional boulder, the ballista scales down to an intimidatingly powerful interoffice mail delivery system. Your memos will never be ignored again. viii