Next Dorbot DC (Tuesday, Feb 26, 2008)

Computers & Mobile Craft & Design Science Technology

Next Meeting:
Tuesday 26 February 2008
7 PM – 9 PM (ET)

Smith Hall of Art, Room 114
George Washington University
801 22nd St NW
Washington, DC 20037

Exploded view of the MESSENGER spacecraft.Katie Bechtold  :  The MESSENGER Project
Katie, a spacecraft flight software developer and controller, will discuss MESSENGER, the first mission to visit Mercury in over 30 years. Now on its way to orbit Mercury starting in 2011, it flew close by the planet last month, offering some tantalizing images. Along with the scientific goals of the mission and an overview of the probe’s onboard sensors, Katie will present a few of the engineering challenges in exploring the innermost planet of our solar system.

Photo of Justin Sabe showing an onlooker his hacked toy accordion. Justin Sabe  :  MIDI Control — How to make expressive digital instruments
Justin broke all his toys as a kid and has spent the rest of his life putting them back together in new and interesting ways. He has toured playing keytar with the goth industrial rock band Ego Likeness taking him around the United States, Germany and to Shiney Z’s, the finest fetish club in Luxembourg. He also plays accordion and has performed at the Kennedy Center in an all tuba christmas concert. Last year he got a Technician class amateur radio license but has yet to key up because he can just call his ham friends on a cell phone any time he wants. He produces a podcast of cats purring.

Justin uses low-cost components to create fun MIDI controllers. He’ll have a show and tell and expand a bit about how to use MIDI for control and how to make expressive digital instruments.

Photo of Remembrancer installation showing the three panels and robotic painters. Alberto Gaitán  :  Remembrancer — (Part 2 of 2: The Software)
Alberto is a composer/programmer/artist who creates a wide range of new media work. His net-aware piece, Remembrancer, deals with transformation, memory, and the spacial, temporal and cultural resonance of events through automated robotic painters responding in real-time to RSS data flowing in over the Internet.

Alberto will be talking a bit about the applications he integrated to create Remembrancer including Max/MSP, Yahoo! Pipes, and RS485 commands.

Welcome to Dorkbot DC! – Link

Discuss this article with the rest of the community on our Discord server!

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. His free weekly-ish maker tips newsletter can be found at

View more articles by Gareth Branwyn


Ready to dive into the realm of hands-on innovation? This collection serves as your passport to an exhilarating journey of cutting-edge tinkering and technological marvels, encompassing 15 indispensable books tailored for budding creators.