LEGO does something good! (Sets revolving around female scientists sold out in one day; previously.) LEGO does something bad! (Sets with major petro-company branding.) [more inside]
Reelgirl: Slut-shaming Princess Leia or protecting childhood from adult sexuality? HitFix: The Terrible Unspoken Implications Of Star Wars' Slave Leia [more inside]
"The Synth Kit that just hit the market originated a year ago, at a TED conference where Bdeir and comedian/musician Reggie Watts met backstage after giving talks, and started discussing the idea of littleBits musical instruments."
What It Takes to Build a Lego Hobbit [cached version] - How Lego's An Unexpected Gathering was designed from the 2,700 pieces of the modern Lego "system of play", which remains compatible with a brick design that goes back to 1958. Despite worries that the stacking brick system has become less creative, a persistant series of complaints that have spawned their own bingo card, it remains hugely popular, in part through quality control and clever licensing. The Lego Bag-End house also comes in a life size version.
Here is Jeff Sanders, who builds things with Legos. Round things. Here's his blog, featuring videos of his work. Here's a Discovery News post on Sanders, with more pictures of his work. This Oregon Live article shows more round Lego creations on his wall.
"Over the years, Lego has had five strategic initiatives aimed at girls. Some failed because they misapprehended gender differences in how kids play. Others, while modestly profitable, didn’t integrate properly with Lego’s core products. Now, after four years of research, design, and exhaustive testing, Lego believes it has a breakthrough. On Dec. 26 in the U.K. and Jan. 1 in the U.S., Lego will roll out Lego Friends, aimed at girls 5 and up.... "The Lego Friends team is aware of the paradox at the heart of its work: To break down old stereotypes about how girls play, it risks reinforcing others. “If it takes color-coding or ponies and hairdressers to get girls playing with Lego, I’ll put up with it, at least for now, because it’s just so good for little girls’ brains,” says Lise Eliot." From Businessweek (print link, above; via BoingBoing), an interesting look at Lego's new girl-oriented initiative.
A giant lego machine which builds a small lego airplane. A 10 min video of lego building lego... I couldn't make it through without fast-forwarding, but as a lego enthusiast, I was intrigued by the way the assorted pieces were provided to the machine and moved along to the final creation.
So, for about two years now, Will Chapman of BrickArms has been creating a wide variety of custom Lego minifigures, ranging from World War II soldiers (both Axis and Allies) to a certain copyrighted British Secret Service agent. One of Chapman's more popular creations is "Mr. White," a "bandit" brimming with weapons (including an AK-47 and RPG) and grenades. This week, the Sun ran a story. Then Fox News ran another. [more inside]
Cool. Cooler. Awesome! Using Lego bricks as a medium to design chess sets seems absolutely logical to anybody that grew up playing with them. Fans have gone low-tech, the inevitable Star Wars, and a few more. Lego offers a virtual cowboys-and-indians version as well. [more inside]
Oh, you never would believe where those LEGO bricks come from. Well, you might. It turns out it's a pretty awesome process. BuisnessWeek gives us the behind the scenes info on LEGO bricks. Did you know LEGO is the world's largest tire manufacturer?
The LEGO Suicides. A series of tragic deaths, built block by block. (flickr slideshow; non-slideshow link here)
Lego Shannanigans! Lego that solves the rubik's cube, the towers of hanoi, is a vision command enabled, four-shot rotary cannon but probably still really hurts when you step on a single block.
Maori challenge Lego to stop using Maori words for its toys Certain Maori objected to what they claimed was Lego's inappropriate use of Maori words, and the way Lego's Bionicle game mixed together strands of many cultures. So what's next? No syncretic philosophy/art? Although I suppose marketing Jesus or Mohammed or Buddha as crappy plastic superheroes might cause a little stir.
It looks like LEGO has licensed Eric Harshbarger's Pixelego Mosaic program. The cool part? You upload an image to the Lego servers, and they send you "building instruction, a mounting panel, a wall hanger and 1,936 bricks to build [the] mosaic"
The Fireland.com Blind Dialog contest. This is a hilarious contest. And how can you resist putting an entry in, when the grand prize is a Lego Ninja Fire Fortress?