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Shapify statues are made from 3D Kinect scans at 1/20 full scale (Photo: Shapify.me)

To make a three-dimensional color statue of yourself, you could grab a chunk of marble and enlist the services of a sculptor and a painter, or you could take the simple approach and use a 3D scanner and a 3D full-spectrum multicolor printer. Since the first option is expensive and time-consuming and very few of us have access to the equipment for the second, Shapify has launched a service that lets users scan themselves at home, using a Kinect.  Read More

The 1:1 scale Lego X-Wing is unveiled in Times Square

A certain Jedi Master, species unknown, once said, “size matters not.” But he obviously wasn’t referring to the latest Lego creation from the Lego group. Taking the title of the world’s largest Lego model is a 1:1 scale replica of an X-Wing made up of 5,335,200 Lego bricks and taking 32 Lego master builders 17,336 hours (around four months) to complete.  Read More

The engine on its 4-hour journey

Eighty Danish Lego devotees got together on May 10 and 11 to help one Henrik Ludvigsen with his plan to build the world's longest plastic toy train track.  Read More

MusicMachine's futuristic looks contain an old-fashioned music box

Though it may bring to mind a Star Wars starfighter model, or perhaps a top-secret military jet concept, the futuristic-looking MusicMachine by Reuge and MB&F is in fact a fully-functional music box.  Read More

Kinect Fusion allows details 3D models to be generated using the Kinect for Windows sensor

It wasn’t that long ago that constructing 3D models was a painstaking and time-consuming task. These days, devices such as the Lynx A camera are turning it into a point and shoot affair. Microsoft is also doing its bit to make life easier for graphic artists, 3D printing aficionados, industrial designers, animators, architects, and games developers by turning its Kinect for Windows sensor to the task of generating 3D models of objects and environments.  Read More

Habitable zone distances around various types of stars (Image: Chester Herman)

Researchers at Penn state have developed a new method for calculating the habitable zone around stars. The computer model based on new greenhouse gas databases provides a tool to better estimate which exoplanets with sufficient atmospheric pressure might be able to maintain liquid water on their surface. The new model indicates that some of the nearly 300 possible Earth-like planets previously identified might be too close to their stars to to be habitable.  Read More

Recreate yourself as a 3D paper model at Paper-Kit.com

Papercraft projects tend to be based on 3D models from video games or custom-made art projects. The basic idea is to take a 3D model and flatten it out in software such as Dunreeb Cutout or Pepakura Designer by Tama software. Then you print it, cut out the parts, fold them where necessary, and paste the whole mess together. Now, thanks to Paper-kit.com, if you've got a big head – or simply want one – you can use the same technique to build an over-sized three-dimensional paper model of yourself using 2D photos.  Read More

What's better than a shipping container house? A model of a shipping container house. Obvi...

"What," I ask you, "could possibly be better than a shipping container that's been converted into a house?" "Nothing," you say. "There's nothing better. Nothing at all. Not even iPad mini" "I know," I nod with smug condescension bordering on the zen-like, "I thought so too." But that was yesterday. Today, courtesy of Module R, there are models of shipping container houses. They're big, too, though thankfully not so big that they won't fit inside your actual shipping container house (stop me if this is getting too meta).  Read More

Northwest Hydraulic Consultants principal Darren Shepherd, using a tiny kayak to assess th...

When an architect is designing a building, they build a scale model to check how their design will work as an actual physical structure. What happens, however, when engineers are designing things that will have to be compatible with the currents in rivers ... things like dams, bridges, or pump stations? Well, that’s where water resources engineering firms like Northwest Hydraulic Consultants (NHC) come into the picture. Their work often includes building exact miniature recreations of waterways, complete with flowing water. We recently caught up with NHC principal Darren Shepherd, who guided us through the production process of one of his more exciting models – a one-twelfth scale Norwegian whitewater kayaking park.  Read More

'Desperate Debra' is a caesarean section simulator that trains surgeons to deal with poten...

Though its makers describe Desperate Debra as "the world's first impacted fetal head simulator," it's perhaps simpler to describe it as a practice dummy for caesarean sections carried out due to the baby's head having become wedged in the mother's pelvis: a situation known as impaction. It's a potentially life-threatening complication and one that is tricky to rectify. Manufacturer of medical simulators Adam,Rouilly has come up with Desperate Debra so that surgeons may practice the procedure.  Read More

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