dorkbot san francisco

People doing strange things with electricity

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7:00pm social hour 8:00pm presentations
Sep 20 2017

Gray Area
2665 Mission St (between 22nd and 23rd)
San Francisco, CA

Sliding scale entry $5-$20 for our hosts much appreciated

Gray Area
2665 Mission St
San Francisco, CA

Greg Leyh - Nikola Tesla's Wireless System and Other Intriguing Large-Scale Electrical Effects

A discussion of three mysterious electrical effects that only occur at large physical scales, and exciting new data and research directions to help solve them

Greg E. Leyh is the principal engineer for Lightning On Demand, a research facility for directly exploring the largescale physics of natural lightning. Previous works include the Electrum Project, a 38ft tall kinetic lightning sculpture currently operating in New Zealand, and the Marx Modulator, a 14 megawatt pulsed power supply for the International Linear Collider.

His employment experience includes Hansen Laboratories at Stanford University, the Stanford Linear Accelerator Center, and Survival Research Laboratories, where he designed the Taser Cannon and the 120L50K Experimental Coil. Current research directions include global wireless power the large-scale physics of natural lightning.

Sam Coniglio, Kiki Jewell, Katherine Becvar - DrinkBots! The Art and Tech of Getting Drunk

Neither cyborg nor a vending machine, a drinkbot creates cocktails in new and entertaining ways. Inspired by the wacky inventions of ROBOEXOTICA in Vienna, Austria, the fascination of Cocktail Robotics inspired a group of San Franciscans and created a series of related events. Is there a business model? (Drinkbots As A Service?) Is it art? Do we care about old tech vs new tech as long as you get a quality drink? Can anyone make a drinkbot? These questions and more will be discussed.

Samuel Coniglio is a retro-futurist who dabbles in Steampunk and in Space Tourism, and finds unusual synergies between old and new. He created his first drinkbot, the COSMOBOT, to combine his love of space travel, robots, and fine cocktails. His latest invention, the TIKITRON, plays with the modern Tiki myths of human sacrifice and volcano deities. As a Space Tourism designer he developed the first Zero Gravity Glass and other concepts for improving creature comforts for weary space travelers. He is a crew member of Obtainium Works Steampunk Artist Collective. By day he fixes computers and translates geek into English for a variety of Silicon Valley companies.

Katherine Becvar is a librarian and costume designer by day, and a mom, artist, and gardener the rest of the time. She created the Tea Engine drinkbot out of a vintage coffee percolator. She is a crew member of Obtainium Works Steampunk Artist Collective.

Kiki Jewell has been a programmer since she was 13 years old, took graduate level programming classes and did research in virtual reality as an undergrad, was a programmer then technical director at Pixar, then left the tech sector to set water fountains on fire for Burning Man, and then created a human out of milk (then out of food.) Recently, she has become very interested in hardware, electric cars, self driving cars, and Montessori education -- she can geek out equally in all of them. She is a crew member of Obtainium Works Steampunk Artist Collective.

Eddie Codel - Advanced Aerial Imagery Techniques with Drones

Eddie will run down some of the fantastic ways you can use a drone to capture advanced aerial imagery. It's not just about pretty pictures. Learn how to create a 360 photo stitched from multiple images. Discover the wonders of creating a terrain map and 3D model of your favorite architectural structure using photogrammetry. Eddie will also share some pretty moving pictures recently captured out at that thing in the desert.

Eddie Codel self-identifies as an aerial cinematographer, drone film festival founder, and live video producer. Eddie is the founder and director of the Flying Robot International Film Festival (FRiFF), now in its 3rd year. FRiFF will screen at the Roxie Theater on November 16th. He can be cound on the Internet at

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Tours / Related Events:


Epic DorkbotSF by Rudy Rucker March 2012

Knowing is Half the Battle - Jon Korn and Nerd Nite SF's Guite to Geeking Out in San Francisco   posted by Jon Korn the bold italic March 2012

BB Video: Tank Tour - One of the World's Largest Collections of Historic Military Technology   posted by Xeni Jardin BoingBoing June 2009

The art of living dangerously   by Annalee Newitz New Scientist July 2006 Issue 2560
Non-subscriber version here

dorkbot: Warehouse of Wild, Weird, and Wonderful Projects   by David Pescovitz   Make Magazine Premiere Issue 2005

dorkbot-sf is a spinoff of dorkbot-nyc which is
"a monthly meeting of artists (sound/image/movement/whatever), designers, engineers, students and other interested parties from the new york area who are involved in the creation of electronic art (in the broadest sense of the term.)"

the purpose of dorkbot is to

  • give artists/programmers/engineers an opportunity for informal peer review
  • establish a forum for the presentation of new art works/technology/software/hardware
  • help establish relationships and foster collaboration between people with various backgrounds and interests
  • give us all a chance to see the cool things that our neighbors are working on

If you would like to speak at a future dorkbotSF contact Karen Marcelo (@dorkbotsf on twitter)

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