Category Archives: Uncategorized

BarkEng Mad Shop on Folksy is now open

Find Me On FolksyTo make the purchase of my products a little easier for some and to increase their visibility and reach, I have opened a Folksy shop.

After many conversations with my customers and other makers, suggesting that I put my products online on a shop like Esty, I found a more suitable alternative.  Folksy focuses on UK makers and is a small company running out of Sheffield. Although their fees are slightly higher, it felt right to be supporting a local independent set up.

I would still prefer if people to buy direct from me, via phone, email or in person, so I can minimise my fees and involvement with PayPal. However, I understand there will be situations where buying via Folksy makes more sense.

For now, I have put a few laser engraved skateboard concept designs and baby sheep mobiles on their.  As and when I have time, I will be added other appropriate items for people to find.

Go check out my new Folksy Shop 🙂

 

Open Hardware Robot Army

Create your own robot Army!

I can not wait to see the results of this open hardware project. The interactive light art installation is going to be spectacular. It wasn’t clear whether this project was open hardware or not, so I contacted artist Sarah Petkus via kickstarter to find out, as below…

Love it!
On completion of your light art installation, will you open sourcing all your hardware and software? Especially as your project can be made using a 3D printer, laser cutter and arduino. Perfect project for any hacker or maker!
Stick the open hardware logo, arduino and Creative commons and get it posted on somewhere like hackaday.com you should get a good response from the free culture community.
Enjoy, Engage & Share 🙂

Sarah replied:

Yes, after we complete our installation we’ll be making all of our hardware/software open for people to hack and play with. I really encourage others to build their own armies. Every home should have a few cool robots in it. =]
I guess adding the open source logo would be a good idea, I can’t believe I overlooked that. Now that we are halfway through our campaign, we’re tweaking our PR strategy a bit- so I’ll plan on reaching out more to the DIY/open source community.
Thank you for the suggestion!

Remember, if you don’t ask, you don’t always get, so if you are a free culture advocate, then be sure to request it. And if they do open up the source files, then be sure to back the project, even if it just for £1.
🙂

 

Open Hardware Feb 2014 Update

I have compile this post with more open projects that may be of interest to you hacker and makers out there.

The stool that rocks
This cool stool was launched via Kickstarter earlier in 2013. What is particularly interesting about this project is that the stool is local manufactured to the buyer. This is the distribution model I am planning to use with my open source LED Clock. You can still buy the stool at assmbly.com

 

YaCyPi is simply a raspberry pi with a YaCy preloaded on it, you can get 2 versions.
– YaCy Server, of which you put on your local network and it will give you access to the YaCy network.
– YaCy Crawler, of which will contribute to building the networks searched content

If you are unsure what YaCy is they you need to watch, or at least listen to the video below.

 

SketchChair is a nice piece of open source software to help you design and create your own CNC’able chair. This was a success kickstarter project back in May 2011.

 

Strawbees are a super simple cool construction kit for kids. It is quite amazing how many nice objects people have come with using strawbees.

 

I saw the MicroSlice at the 2013 Derby Mini Maker Faire, of which I exhibited my LED Clock. Its a great little device and is proving to be popular in Kickstarter. Maybe there is still time to get yours.

 

uArm is desktop open hardware robot arm, inspired by industrial pick and place robot arms.

 

Unlocked Furniture is an interesting CNC furniture project, although not open source. Maybe they will see the light and liberate there designs.

 

SmartScope is cheaper and more elegant solution to your oscilloscope needs, plus it open source 🙂

Thats all for now… If you discover any new open hardware projects be sure to email me with them

Enjoy, engage & share!

Welcome to Code Club…

Today, I will be starting my first after school Code Club where I will be teaching Year 4, 5 & 6 students at Milford Primary School in Derbyshire, how to program.

Getting ready for my first cod club session...

Getting ready for my first code club session…

Code club is a really important organisation that is going to get the UK’s children creating and sharing computer programs, instead of just consuming them.

Watch this short fun video that one of the Code Clubs has created…

If you have programming skills and would like to share them, then maybe you could become a code club volunteer and work with a local school. For more detail on how it was set up and what it is about watch this video of a lecture explaining all.

I will keep you all posted on how I get on throughout the term.

Enjoy, Share & Engage… 🙂

Cheers, Morgan Barke

CNCing Flexible Plywood

I have seen many examples of materials being laser cut to provide flexible properties, as can be seen here on a hackaday post.
Ref: http://hackaday.com/2011/12/07/laser-cutting-technique-makes-plywood-bendable/

Laser cut flexible box

Laser cut flexible box for arduino project – Hackaday

However, today I saw an implementation of this design technique, but on a CNC router that I thought was worth sharing…

The Belin based design and manufacturing  company flxble has created a bike wall mount using this technique. Here is a video from their website…

Enjoy & share if you like…

Free & open source 2D Inkjet Printers

Free and open source 3D printers have really taken off in the past year, most likely based upon the Reprap. All the press will have you believe that 3D printers will be in every home, just like we have 2D inkjet printers! I am still not 100% if that is a good thing or not, of which I will get into in another post at some point…

Yet, there isn’t a suitable open source 2D inkjet printer out there (well, at least that I could find). There seems to have been a few attempts as the video below highlights, but this hasn’t created any traction in creating a viable open source option to replace what HP, Canon or Epsom have to offer.

You can find the components here on thingiverse, to make your own.

This article is worth a read, on open sourcing the inkjet scam discussing the options of hacking the inkjet printers to circumvent the chips that force you to buy new cartridges, rather than re-filling them.

But hacking the chips doesn’t really solve the core issue, of that we don’t have an open source 2D inkjet printer alternative, that could ultimately provide us with a repairable, upgradable and in the long term a cheaper method of home printing. There is no doubt that open source 3D printers will further advance, along with the growth of open source hardware community and hopefully the public will take notice and action that these big corporations are just ripping us off.  So maybe we will have run, then learn to walk, by in the future taking few steps back, designing and creating a viable 2D print in the public domain.

UPDATE: The Light Bulb Conspiracy is great documentary that explains planned obsolescence, of which can be solved by the free culture community. Here is the featured youtube video about The Dirty Little secrets of Inkjet Printers.

Didnt post correctly, so try try try again

It posted to twitter just fine, but posted to my personal facebook page, instead of the Barkeng Mad page. Let me try again…

Auto Posting to Facebook and twitter using Social

In order to get my posts automatically on twitter it seems to be best using the “Social” WordPress plugin. This also has the feature of linking to Facebook pages, so I have disabled the “Add link to facebook” plugins, so not to duplicate posts… Lets see if it works…

Auto posting from WP blog to facebook and twitter

I am in the process of configuring my wordpress blog, so it automatically post to facebook business page and personal twitter. It looks like I will have to manually update my identi.ca and Google+ accounts.

Once I have it all set up, I will post here on how I have done it and why.

Lets all get Britain cycling

I finally got out on my bike this weekend. 38 miles on the road on Saturday and 7 miles off road on Sunday christening my new (to me) full suspension mountain bike “Keith”. I am looking forward to getting out lots this summer.

I have just signed the e-petition on improving cycling on Britain’s roads. I suggest you watch this video and sign it too if enjoy cycling…

Here is the link to the e-petition….
https://submissions.epetitions.direct.gov.uk/petitions/49196