Thursday, September 24, 2009

So ive been working on my next project, and ive been kicking around this idea.  I was thinking while i was lost in chicago the other day that it would really handy if a had a compass right now. So i was pondering the idea of a compass and started thinking about GPS systems. Predominately how much i hate the things.  I know not every one grew up a boy scout like me, but i can figure out the general direction by just looking at the position of the the sun.

 I've been trying to figure out what exactly i dislike about GPS systems and other types technology like it. (random question: what the hell is a 3G network anyway?)  What i dislike about them can be summed up in describing the difference between analog and digital technologies. I ve done a little reach on this and also on various types of compass'.

So for my next project i intend on fabricating a hand bearing compass.  This will be a fully functioning compass, but also i want to reference GPS systems directly through the form.  This could either done using text, symbols, or referencing the form on a TOM TOM through the use of similar armatures.  

Lets me know what you think, im open to suggestions.

Compass vs. TOM TOM

 

Analog vs. Digital

Analog-Analog recording methods store audio signals as a continual wave in or on the media. The wave might be stored as a physical texture on a phonograph record, or a fluctuation in the field strength of a magnetic recording. This is different from digital recording, which converts audio signals into discrete numbers.

Digital- video or sound is converted into a stream of discrete numbers, representing the changes in chroma and luminance values (video) or air pressure (audio) through time, thus making an abstract template for the original sound or moving image.

Difference: analog information is recorded and stored as a physical document; i.e. an LP or Film. Digital recording is converted into binary code (010101010101).  This method doesn’t register all frequencies and thus round the wave-lengths up or down in a mathematical manner, thus resulting in an approximation of the original recording.

Compass’ (Analog)

Dry Compass-The dry mariner's compass was invented in Europe around 1300. The dry mariner's compass consists of three elements: A freely pivoting needle on a pin enclosed in a little box with a glass cover and a wind rose, whereby "the wind rose or compass card is attached to a magnetized needle in such a manner that when placed on a pivot in a box fastened in line with the keel of the ship the card would turn as the ship changed direction, indicating always what course the ship was on". Later, compasses were often fitted into a gimbal mounting to reduce grounding of the needle or card when used on the pitching and rolling deck of a ship.

Bearing Compass- is a magnetic compass mounted in such a way that it allows the taking of bearings of objects by aligning them with the lubber line of the bearing compass. The bearing compass was steadily reduced in size and weight to increase portability, resulting in a model that could be carried and operated in one hand. In 1885, a patent was granted for a hand compass fitted with a viewing prism and lens that enabled the user to accurately sight the heading of geographical landmarks, thus creating the prismatic compass. Another sighting method was by means of a reflective mirror. First patented in 1902, the B├ęzard compass consisted of a field compass with a mirror mounted above it. This arrangement enabled the user to align the compass with an objective while simultaneously viewing its bearing in the mirror.

Hand Bearing Compass- is a term for any compact magnetic compass capable of one-hand use and fitted with a sighting device to record a precise bearing or azimuth to a given target or to determine a location.

Liquid Compass- is a design in which the magnetized needle or card is damped by fluid to protect against excessive swing or wobble, improving readability while reducing wear. A rudimentary working model of a liquid compass was introduced by Sir Edmund Halley at a meeting of the Royal Society in 1690. However, as early liquid compasses were fairly cumbersome and heavy, and subject to damage, their main advantage was aboard ship. Protected in a binnacle and normally gimbal-mounted, the liquid inside the compass housing effectively damped shock and vibration, while eliminating excessive swing and grounding of the card caused by the pitch and roll of the vessel

GPS: tom tom and garmin…

GPS-s a U.S. space-based global navigation satellite system. It provides reliable positioning, navigation, and timing services to worldwide users on a continuous basis in all weather, day and night, anywhere on or near the Earth. GPS is made up of three parts: between 24 and 32 satellites orbiting the Earth, four control and monitoring stations on Earth, and the GPS receivers owned by users. GPS satellites broadcast signals from space that are used by GPS receivers to provide three-dimensional location (latitude, longitude, and altitude) plus the time.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Serious Bling.

This piece by Lauren Kalman is not what you call "traditional".  This piece is bling for your gums.  The piece is made from Gold plated copper and is cast.

What is intriguing to me about this piece is that it adorns a part of the body that hasn't ever been embellished in the normal sense.  The idea of this object is ridiculous in terms of a practical piece of jewelry, and thats what is fun about this piece.  Its grotesque and a little disturbing, but I can't turn my eyes away.  

Sunday, September 13, 2009

This ring was made by Rob Jackson. Rob Jackson is a metalsmithing Professor at the University of Georgia in Athens.  This ring is made from a found iron nail with gold and a ruby.  This ring was cast using the lost wax casting process and the stone was cast in place as well.  Rob works primarily in steel and iron, most of which is found in nature or in the walls of an old barn.  

This piece intrigues me because of its use of found material and the reordering of the metal hierarchy.  The steel is the most important aspect of the ring; the gold and ruby are off to the side and behind the nail,  making the first thing you notice is the nail itself.  This ring comments on issues of preciousness and worth.  Which aspect of the ring is the most important?

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

INtro to Me.

Hello ALL,

My name is Patrick Charles Walter and I'm a MetalSmith from Milwaukee; and this is my blog...

This blog is designed to show you my work from inception to final assembly.  The title of my blog is "Fatto a Mano" which means "made by hand" in Italian.  As you will read, you will learn that I am obsessed with Italy after I lived there in the Spring of 2009.

I am currently an Undergraduate student at UW-Milwaukee and I am studying MetalSmithing and History.  I should be graduating by the end of this year, Spring 2010.   After Undergrad I have tentative plans to either go straight to Grad school or I'm going to take a year off and hike the Appalachain trail, all 2300 miles of it.  Ideally I would like to attend Grad school out East or even farther East, in Italy, my other home, or at least I wish.