Make Podcast: Graffiti Research Lab’s Throwies at the Maker Faire

Make Podcast: Graffiti Research Lab’s Throwies at the Maker Faire

James Powderly sat down with me and walked me through the process of making throwies. They are easy to make and fun to throw on things. Graffiti Research Labs brought in a bus and they let people make throwies to throw on things. In this video, James explains that throwies are more than little lights to throw around. GRL takes it conceptually deeper by exploring political issues around prison time for graffiti artists and bringing those issues to communities in a gentle way.


There is a lot going on in the background of this video. The Graffiti Research Lab at the Maker Faire was busy!


Previous Throwie Articles: howto, throwie talkies, on/off tabs, and motion sensitive.

Thowie instructions and interesting discussion is over at instructables and for subscribers, here is the Digital Edition Throwie Article

I used a few seconds of footage from two GRL videos that you can watch here and here. Both vids are great. Go watch them too!

Click here to get the video (MP4) delivered automatically with iTunes. This video will play on PC/Mac/Linux/PSPs and iPod video devices – Link.

23 thoughts on “Make Podcast: Graffiti Research Lab’s Throwies at the Maker Faire

  1. paulsw says:

    NiMH batteries are great, I just got 4 2500mAh Energizers on special for AU$15. I’ve only got a slow style charger, but I think the fast chargers are actually better for battery life with NiMH.

  2. pjamestx says:

    Yeah, I did a bunch of research before I bought my last batch of batteries, and it really paid off. There’s a great shoot-out here:

    and although it’s a little out of date, I took the info to the Thomas Distributing site mentioned below and found the newer versions of the batteries that did the best in the competition, and made sure to pick up the charger they recommended as well. Very happy with the results.

  3. Peepsalot says:

    Since there is no standard testing procedure, mAh ratings that companies give to their batteries often amount to little more than an advertising gimmick(like AMDs XP processor numbering scheme). Only way to kow for sure is to scientifically compare competing brands using a consistent procedure performed by an independant party.

    This is the most thorough and professional comparison of rechargeable batteries that I’ve seen. And appears to be updated quite frequently.

    I bought a bunch of Sanyo Industrial 2300mAh batteries a while ago based on the tests done there. Looks like many newer models have come out since then, but Sanyo’s latest model is still on top. I recommend them.

  4. aplumb says:

    I’d love to be able to trickle-charge one or two AA/AAA batteries off my USB port.

    Anyone heard of such a thing?


  5. bodiby says:

    I highly recommend the two comparison sites above. As far as charging goes, you need a smart charger. Maha is one company that makes them. They will charge until full and then either shut off or trickle charge. Over charging is bad for NiMH batteries.

  6. J450N says:

    Is there such a thing as lithium Ion AA batteries?

  7. yhtomit says:

    Andrew (above) asked about AA / AAA trickle chargers using USB, and Yes, there is such a thing; last year I bought one from ThinkGeek (disclosure: I work / have worked Slashdot, both are owned by VA Software). Works, but pretty slow. Still, it’s good for what it is, and quite small.

    Looks like TG isn’t carrying them any more, but (detailing aside) it’s physically identical to this:



  8. yhtomit says:

    I’ve been using a pair of Ray-o-Vac quickchargers for a while, but I broke one’s charging unit, and the other has given up the ghost after a few years of decent service. Ijust bought one of these and am quite impressed with it (and Amazon’s price was as good as anything I found elsewhere):

    It’s got many more features than I’m likely ever to use, but the defaults are sane, and I really like the info-heavy display. (Compared to the typical charger, where you have … an LED. Maybe two.)

    Now what I’d like to see is a charger with a USB port for even more info, dancing HTML-based charts, etc.


  9. ian-2 says:

    “Now what I’d like to see is a charger with a USB port for even more info, dancing HTML-based charts, etc.”

    YES! lets do this. sounds like a nice instructable. A 18f2455 USB PIC, a few FETS, some LEDS, JOY! Get some nice stats from the USB as HTML or from a simple VB program.

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