Apologies for the long wait between drinks folks, however a few things have been taking up my time; supervising 2 construction projects at work, then starting a new job, as well as buying and selling an apartment.
To sell my apartment, I’ve had to pack up my 2nd bedroom that doubles as a workshop to prepare for all the house inspections. People who don’t spend their time building, making or tinkering with stuff wouldn’t have a workshop as a high priority on their list of “Pros”. A friend agreed that I needed to pack up my workshop, he politely noted, “It would be hard to visualise that room ever being a nursery”.
So, I’ve been without a means to build, break, print or experiment with stuff for about 8 weeks now and it has been frustrating. To fill the void, I’ve spent a lot of time learning some new things from YouTube and reading other’s blogs. Below are some of the more interesting or less well known content I’ve found.
I stumbled across the Welch Labs YouTube channel when I wanted to learn more about how neural networks operate. Why did I want to know more about neural networks? Recently, an AI machine, called AlphaGo, beat a world leading human player 4 to 1 in the game Go. I don’t know how to play Go, however I remember hearing years ago that Go is a great way to test the performance of an AI program due to the complexity and forward planning of the game.
Welch Labs videos do a great job at explaining complex concepts visually. What I have found most impressive though is the playlist on imaginary numbers and how useful they can be. I completed a programming assignment years ago that required manipulating coordinates and using complex numbers was an effective way to do this. This is a great series of videos for people new to complex numbers or or those who need a refresher.
ITER is an impressive piece of engineering. Currently, an international consortium is constructing a Tokamak fusion reactor that is expected to produce net power. More details explaining the project can be found at the ITERorganization YouTube channel.
Putting aside the physics required to get a fusion reactor to work, the engineering and build process is exceptionally impressive. Having worked in construction before, the degree of tooling for assembly of this project is astounding – the video below demonstrates this clearly.
If you are interested or getting started with woodworking, the Darbin Orvar channel, has some really well produced woodworking videos. Each step of a build is well explained and any techniques are demonstrated clearly.
I’ve started listening to a few podcasts during my drive to work. A favourite so far is, Science Vs, a podcast that peels back the hype around a topic and evaluates if the claims really stack up when the science is revealed.
3D Printed Quadcopters
A friend of mine is currently documenting the build of a small, custom quadcoptor called the 215 Hopper. Most of the structure is built using 3d printed parts and electronic circuit boards. I’m told that the quadcopter is very agile and fast. Apparently a prototype unit has been lost somewhere over North Wollongong during testing.