Make: Technology on Your Time Volume 31
By Mark Frauenfelder
Publisher: Maker Media, Inc
Released: July 2012
Pages: 176

Why are so many kids (and adults) like you bored by science? Simple: you’ve had no real contact with it. You might read about incredibly expensive scientific projects, but your hands-on experience is probably limited to the same tired experiments—like baking soda and vinegar "volcanoes." Not any longer. Make Magazine’s "Punk Science" issue (volume 31) shows you how you can become a real, cutting-edge amateur scientist.

Find out how high school and college students can get an introduction to modern biology research through affordable biotech labs provided by Otyp, a small Michigan-based biotechnology company. And learn how a cooperative network of schools and research groups, called PEER, enables students to learn science by working on real projects with people in the field—including the DECA (Distributed Electronic Cosmic-Ray) Observatory that uses Android phones to generate a real-time cosmic-ray flux map of a large area.

This issue also shows you how to create these fascinating projects on your own:

  • RoboRoach—Surgically modify a cockroach with a wireless electronic circuit so that you can control it to turn left or right by micro-stimulating its antenna nerves.
  • Lord Kelvin’s Thunderstorm—a little-known, classic science experiment that generates high-voltage "lightning" sparks by dripping water through metal rings.
  • An automatic Ball/Toy Launcher for Dogs that will keep your pet entertained and exercised while you’re away.
  • A True Mirror, which shows what you look like to other people.

Pick up a copy of Make today and get involved with real science.

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oreillyMake: Technology on Your Time Volume 31
 
3.5

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3.0

My Review of Make: Volume 31

By hfb

from Nashua, NH

About Me Engineer

Verified Reviewer

Pros

  • Helpful examples

Cons

  • Fpv Misinformation

Best Uses

  • Expert

Comments about oreilly Make: Technology on Your Time Volume 31:

I have been a fan of this magazine and this one is also quite good. There are good things about Arduino's, which I really like to use, and other interesting projects. The cover has information about multi-rotors and that is what really interested me as I do this myself in my own time. However, I was disappointed in how some of the information was presented and some of the information was incomplete.
First, these multi-rotors should NOT be used to spy on people and that's one of the first things you read in the title of the article. Then at the end, there's talk about wireless transmission. While it's true that you'll need a HAM license for systems 1W or higher, that's only true if it's an FCC certified system. For all the systems out there used for FPV, almost NONE of them are within the license free class so you MUST have a HAM radio license to use the transmitter legally. Many don't and that doesn't mean it's okay to do. End rant about bad FPV information.
Aside from that section, I really enjoyed this issue of the magazine. It's always nice to have something that teaches people how to make things and do things on their own. You learn a lot more that way.

Disclaimer: This magazine was received as part of the O'Reilly Blogger Review Program. All comments represent my thoughts and opinions.

 
4.0

Doing first, questioning yourself later.

By dheat5

from Australia

About Me Maker

Verified Reviewer

Pros

  • Accurate
  • Easy to understand
  • Helpful examples
  • Well-written

Cons

    Best Uses

    • Intermediate
    • Novice
    • Student

    Comments about oreilly Make: Technology on Your Time Volume 31:

    To summarise MAKE volume 31 is a few words is not quite a fair task mainly because of the copious amounts of stories, projects and interesting subjects that lie within. Wether your interested in remote controlled cockroaches, binaural beats, DIY scanning electron microscope or creating high voltage (22kV) sparks from running water MAKE volume 31 seems to have something for everyone who is interested in hacking, making and crafting.

    The theme of this issue of MAKE is punk science, the concept of running with your ideas and projects first, then questioning yourself afterwards. The most prominent feature article on this for me would have to be a hackerspace in Japan during the aftermath of the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear disaster. Instead of waiting around for information on radiation contamination they put together a system to record radiation levels (with corresponding GPS co-ordinate) while driving around. Although crude at first (geotagged pictures of a geiger counter display readout) the system kept on been revised and developed into a complete system. This example reflects well the ideology of this issue of MAKE: Doing first, questioning yourself later.

    This issue of MAKE also comes with loads of projects people have done to draw inspiration from as well as a good selection of projects you can do at home with full instructions, bill of materials etc. Some of the more notable (at least for me) projects this issue were Lord Kelvin's Thunderstorm, a system to generate HV sparks and PVC pipe speakers which use PVC pipe to create a resonation chamber. I can't wait to have a crack at trying some of these projects (in particular creating HV sparks from flowing water), In addition to this the projects mentioned have also given be some ideas for future personal projects.

    All in all I've really pleased with this issue of make. I do wonder if some of the projects and stories I could have found out about elsewhere on the internet, however I'm not overly worried because what I see MAKE doing here is sharing and showcasing peoples projects, ideas and storied so that a wider community of hackers and makers can benefit from them.

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