Posts Tagged 'Da Vinci'

Leonardo Da Vinci Papers go online

Apparently this was a couple of years ago but I recently found out that the town of Vinci where Leonardo Da Vinci was born has put the contents of the Madrid Codices and the Codex Atlanticus online. They are also planning to put online digital copies of the Windsor folios and 12 notebooks from the Institut de France for a total of 12,000 pages. Here is a relevant excerpt from Wired.

While the digital notebooks offer advantages to make academics sob with joy — semantic search functions, clustered results — most of them vanish without a working knowledge of 15th-century Italian. (Forms in English are expected in about two months; an index of drawings in English is expected by year’s end.)

To index Leonardo’s designs and irregular vocabulary, text-mining company Synthema teamed up with engineers from the University of Florence and the Accademia della Crusca, Italy’s national language institute founded in 1582.

“Leonardo had a very modern way of jumbling things together, a true multitasker,” says Federico Neri, head of R&D at Synthema. “There are technical specifications next to shopping lists. Finding anything used to be mining in a literal sense.” Neri hopes to eventually develop a multilanguage version to help readers explore the notebooks.

Nonetheless, there are plenty of curiosities for the lay reader.

Even a quick spin may turn up, as it did on a recent once-over of the Codex Atlanticus, the spring-propelled vehicle thought to be a precursor to Mars rovers. And the high-resolution images are arguably as close as one will get to the real thing unless you’re Bill Gates.

There are references to a sketch in the Codex Atlanticus showing the backside of Leonardo’s comely assistant, Salaino, with penises speeding at him. When an e-Leo user’s attempts to find it fail, Taddei recites a folio number from memory with the cool aplomb of a professional used to stewarding odd requests.

The URL for the e-Leo project is as follows: http://www.leonardodigitale.com/ Registration is required but its free.

Da Vinci Automa on the Facebook!

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I have finally given into the temptation, Da Vinci Automata is now on the Facebook under the current alias (what else Da Vinci Automata). I have also created a Clock group on the Facebook. Here’s the link to the profile and a link to the group. Add me if you get a chance. It can be a good place to get all the Clockpunkers together. Keep clocking!

David Roy’s Elegant Kinetic Sculptures

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The folks over at Cabinet of Wonders did a post on David C. Roy’s Kinetic Sculptures some time ago. It has been in my drafts list for quite some time now. Here is the description of David Roy’s work from the Cabinet of wonders:

Mr. Roy, who has a degree in physics and engineering, says that the artistic influence of his wife, and later, an interest in optical patterns, led him to the designs he produces today. The names of his sculptures, words such as Radiance, Illusion, Spectrum, and Harmony seem to imply a dual interest in physics and metaphysics, or at least meditation, on Mr. Roy’s part.

Interestingly, I thought these objects were small, either hand-held or head-sized; but if you look at Mr. Roy’s About the Artist page, you will see that they are actually quite large, some of them about the size of large wagon wheels.

It’s nice to see an elegant combination of craftsmanship and mechanical works; and combined, they produce a contemplative and, in some cases, satisfyingly clockpunk result.

Clockpunk indeed! Interestingly the sculptures are designed in Adobe Illustrator. A great combination of the new and the old. The moving parts create quite an interesting effect, the price tag is kind of hefty but one can easily see why. If there will be a clockpunk based mystery novella or a tv series, I am sure we will see something similar to David Roy’s sculptures.

Cabaret Mechanical Theatre

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Cabaret Mechanical Theatre is a collection of (humorous) contemporary automata. The site has a bunch of interesting things e.g., they also seem to hold competition for building automatas for school kids. Many of their automatas are part of a traveling exhibition in Britain, while others are at Marvin’s Marvelous Mechanical Museum in Detroit, USA. Be sure to check out their virtual exhibition section which gives some ideas about their automatas. Coincidently these folks also have a book on making automatas titled Cabaret Mechanical Movement which can be bought from their website. And you can also buy a whole bunch of automatas from the site also.

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Keep an eye on the news section of their site for their future exhibitions.


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Knowing and Doing

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“I have been impressed with the urgency of doing. Knowing is not enough; we must apply. Being willing is not enough; we must do.” - Leonardo Da Vinci