Small Streams

A Toy Store
August 16, 2014, 4:25 am
Filed under: Uncategorized | Tags:
Whirligig Store

Me with a metal whirligig in front of the Whirligig store preparing for the Lorne Michaels Look-Alike Contest.

Whirligig is the name of a toy store in Brighton, England, that gets it. They have items and kits with which kids can actually engage: paper toys, wooden toys, automata, etc. It’s run by two people who don’t just sell toys but take delight in them. The owner, Peter Allinson, I believe, creates crocheted versions of the some of the town’s landmarks including a Ferris Wheel.  

The whirligig itself is a pinwheel. I consider a Gyroscope a type of whirligig with an added dimension. Sometimes whirligigs can be windmills to drive automata. They can be used to create additional Holland or to make a gnome wave.



Volvelle Possibilities
August 14, 2014, 4:08 am
Filed under: art, awareness, maps, math, media, toys, Uncategorized

Volvelle Possibilities

Just a little doodle to set me thinking. Even limiting myself to concentric circles for the most part, I kept coming up with possibilities for using Volvelles. I started with the idea of surveying what could be done with a circle and a pivot. Information can be obscured, indicated, or illuminated with a Volvelle. The second circle below could be a changing face. I’m not sure how you illustrate or derive a function with such a thing. But, like I say, “just a little doodle.” Transparent colored circles could illustrate combinations and layered traces could illustrate circuits. The final Volvelle on the bottom right plays with the idea of a spiral around a pivot, that is a turntable. Is the needle on the top or the bottom? Is there a needle guide? Maybe musicians could use them to demonstrate a musical passage. Just run an amplifying stylus through the grooves and you have yourselves a tune.