2015-12-13 2 min read



As most of you know, I've been thinking a lot about "generative design," and that sparked some thoughts on how to attribute authorship as one's CAD software takes increasing control over the form of an object. I've also been thinking about design documentation, and how freeform & lattice structures can and should be documented.

These thoughts crystallized a bit this week, and I wrote a thing about them.


  • Dow and DuPont are going to merge and then split three ways by market sector.
  • Moog (the aerospace manufacturer, not the synthesizer company) is going to buy a 70% stake in Linear Mold - one of the largest metal AM job shops in the country.
  • An interesting tidbit: the astronauts on Skylab 4 went on strike (for one day) once.



  • How to deter elephants: keep bees.
  • Airbus and Snecma are working on counter-rotating open rotor airplane engines. The tradeoff here is interesting: the engines themselves are more efficient, but you need to put armor on the airplane to protect it in the off chance that a rotor breaks and flies towards the fuselage. If the armor weighs too much, it offsets the efficiency benefits of the engine.
  • Tim Hwang spoke with KALW last week about the birth of The Infrastructure Observatory.


  • You know how people are always talking about how quickly things are changing these days? And how everything seems to be speeding up? This Economist article does a good job explaining just how spurious those claims actually are.
  • Google says that they've proven that D-Wave's quantum annealer actually works for optimization problems (albeit in a pretty limited context). This is a big deal. Related, see this article about IBM's efforts to develop universal quantum computers, and the graphic in it that compares universal quantum to annealers.
  • Non-celiac gluten sensitivity does not exist.
  • The Robot Operating System (an open source OS) is eight years old. Last year, something like $150M worth of VC money was invested in startups developing on ROS.

Stuff that doesn't fit into my dumb/arbitrary categories.


A teardown of a Macbook charger.

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