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MZ_ToolsForCreativity-Badge.gifThe other day, I bumped into these interesting (but sold out) “trading cards” from mysterious and delightful Imaginary Foundation. I immediately did a web search and found a remaining set ($18) at an e-tailer (they only had one deck left). They came today, and they’re really nice. It’s a shame they aren’t selling them anymore.

The idea was to collect 23 “giants of pattern recognition,” scientists, technologists, philosophers, even some pattern-hunting hardware (Big Blue, The Hubble Telescope). The packaging is simple and handsome and the 23 black, white, and shades of blue cards have a name/photo on one side and then baseball card-like “stats” on the reverse (a “Meta Pattern,” the big idea the person is known for, some factoids, famous quotes, published works, web resources, etc.). Each card also has a hole in the corner and you’re invited to peer through it, beyond the patten-seeker you’re looking at, to discover your own “meta patterns” on the other side. Some might find this silly, but I think the cards and their overall effect are charming and educational. I collect card games, trading cards, flash cards, tarot cards, etc., so I’m thrilled to add these to my collection. If you can scare up a deck, they’d make a swell Christmas present.

The Imaginary Foundation

Gareth Branwyn

Gareth Branwyn is a freelancer writer and the former Editorial Director of Maker Media. He is the author or editor of a dozen books on technology, DIY, and geek culture, including the first book about the web (Mosaic Quick Tour) and the Absolute Beginner’s Guide to Building Robots. He is currently working on a best-of collection of his writing, called Borg Like Me.


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