By George Hart for the Museum of Mathematics


Remember floppy disks? They still appear as the Save icon on some software, but not everyone is old enough to know why. Here’s a sculpture I made from thirty floppy disks, called Disk Combobulation. They are slotted at just the right angles to slide together and hold without glue. The overall shape, with thirty faces and twelve pentagonal openings, is a truncated rhombic triacontahedron.

Slotting floppy disks is tricky, but you can make a paper version of this design pretty easily. The instructions and a template are online here.

See all of George Hart’s Math Monday columns

Gareth Branwyn

Gareth Branwyn

Gareth Branwyn is a freelance writer and the former Editorial Director of Maker Media. He is the author or editor of over a dozen books on technology, DIY, and geek culture. He is currently a contributor to Boing Boing, Wink Books, and Wink Fun. And he has a new best-of writing collection and “lazy person’s memoir,” called Borg Like Me.