Month: May 2009

WIRED photo gallery now online

Published / by Bill

As I mentioned previously, a reporter and photographer from WIRED met with us on Sunday to document BayLUG‘s plans for Maker Faire. The results are now online, and the photos look great! They have a slide show featuring each of the BayLUG members who were present and at least one of each of our models.

Billl Ward photo on

See you this weekend at Maker Faire!

Special BayLUG meeting for WIRED interview & photo shoot

Published / by Bill

Yesterday, we had a special meeting of BayLUG members so that a reporter and photographer from WIRED could come and take pictures of some of our models and talk to us. About a half-dozen members showed up at MoAH in Palo Alto and set up an assortment of models that we’re bringing to Maker Faire next weekend.

I forgot my camera, but luckily others didn’t. Mark Warren took a bunch of great pictures and posted them on a Picasa folder. Click the image to see the rest of them:

BayLUG photo op for Wired

This was for the site, not the print magazine. Hopefully the results will be online in a few days, because the point of the exercise was to talk about what will be on display at Maker Faire. I’ll post a blog entry with a link as soon as it becomes available.

Frisco Bucking Bronco

Published / by Bill

When I heard that LEGO was opening a store in Frisco, TX I asked my friend Sylvia who lives there if she could stop by the grand opening and try to score one of these bucking bronco sets. They were given out to the first 300 customers at the new store. But Sylvia is not one to do things halfway – she was third in line to get into the store, and first to check out. That’s right, this is the first ever bucking bronco given out at that store! Check the timestamp on the receipt…

Frisco Bucking Bronco

Steve Barile on TV

Published / by Bill

Portland’s KATU Channel 2 recently featured Steve Barile (organizer of BrickFest) on a TV interview. Aside from the fact that they kept using the term “Legos” they did a really good job of showing the AFOL (Adult Fan of LEGO) hobby in a respectful, positive way. It’s nice and long, too, with plenty of great shots of Steve’s LEGO collection and models. Steve seemed very relaxed and comfortable in front of the camera, which is a great feat in itself. Go Steve!

You can watch the video on KATU’s Web site.

Little Australian Houses?

Published / by Bill

One of my pictures has been used by the Australian Broadcasting Corporation on their Web site to illustrate a radio story about the relative merits of buying versus renting a home. You can see it on the ABC News homepage as a small thumbnail on the right hand side, and if you click the “Best of” link it takes you to a “best of” page where that story is featured with a larger version of the image at the top of the page. Here’s the photo they used (from their Web server):
Little houses via

My photos are published with a Creative Commons attribution license, so I’m not mad that they used the photo, but they (as far as I can tell) failed to credit the photo which I think is in pretty poor taste. (If you like the models, I have posted the LDraw instructions online.) Here’s the original photo, linked to its page on Flickr:
Little Houses on Flickr

You can really see the blurriness created when they cropped it and re-saved the JPEG (probably with a high level of compression). Thanks to Stephen Calder, aka aussiechef67 for pointing it out via a comment on Flickr.


Published / by Bill

A couple of weeks ago, I was a guest speaker at Cypress High School in Santa Cruz, CA. A friend of mine is a math teacher there and she invited me in to give a LEGO presentation. I decided to focus my talk on the art of lettering in LEGO, so I brought along my LOVE and LEGO Robert Indiana style sculptures, and the Blackburn Hotel. I also built some lettering out of LEGO parts as a study of different ways to model the alphabet. I came up with a set of five clear baseplates with the letters A through Z, each letter in a different style:


I also made some more basic lettering examples. The students then had about 15 minutes (I meant to give them more time, but between my rambling on, and their incessant questions, the presentation part took a lot longer than planned) to play with some bulk LEGO that I had brought, to try to build their names or other text… Here’s some of what they came up with:

High School CreationsHigh School Creations

Bricks by the Bay Facebook event created

Published / by Bill

Bricks by the Bay now has an event on Facebook. Please RSVP there if you’re a Facebook user, and join our Facebook group. (If you want to be my Facebook friend, visit my public profile.)

We created a group a while ago, but I had to wait until May 1st to create the event since Facebook doesn’t have a “year” field for events – 12 months is the limit. In other words, the convention is less than a year away!

Bricks by the Bay is also on Twitter, so follow us there. We also have mailing list for announcements as well as people helping with planning at our site,