This Blog

This blog is about ingenious solutions, making do with the available. Levi-Strauss's used the term "Bricoleur." His reference of often confused with "Jack of All Trades," but it meant a more complete kind of what we refer to today, I think, as a "Maker." He wrote that the rules of the game for the Bricoleur are always to make do with tools and materials that are at hand.

Terry Frohm, principle technician at the CRRF Chuuk marine laboratory, used the term "Making Do" to refer to appurtenances and contrivances he innovated for the laboratory, without expensive and specialized equipment or hardware.

I recognized Levi-Strauss's meaning in Micronesian fishermen's use of the available to solve their own problems: Marshallese fishermen used a piece of broken glass or a sharp piece of Aluminum beer can to clean a catch of fish on the beach; their spears were fashioned of discarded water tank bands, and their slings from airplane inner tubes. Goggles were carved from available wood---using possibly a kitchen knife sharpened on a piece of pumice that had drifted onto the beach, their glass from a
relict World War II airplane.

This Blog cannot adequately honor the resourcefulness of those men, but I have borrowed the words of Terry Frohm, to describe the purpose of this proposed collection of solutions and innovations. But I hope it can serve as more than a collection. Rather, by example, a reminder that solutions are often at arm's reach, and not in catalogs.

Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Getting the ball rolling: A Short List of Practical Solutions I Have Known.

Many or most of these ideas have never been actualized.  
  • Cordova, Alaska Skiff Bailer
  • My Macro attachment for a cheap canon Power Shot camera, and a diy flash diffuser
  • Using a selfie stick to hold a cell phone (camera) down low near the mud for a transect across a mud flat, to record small critters in minute burrow entrances
  • A pressure lantern understage trans-illuminator for a stereomicroscope
  • A fortuitous method of tapping a modified 12 volt power line into a portable HP Printer.
  • Various untapped ideas for 3D printing macro attachments
  • Using a 6W fluorescent lamp for household illumination 
  •  Using a fragment of a broken bottle on the beach to clean a fish

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