Make: Podcast – Survival Research Labs Walkthrough

Make: Podcast – Survival Research Labs Walkthrough

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While in San Francisco, I was invited to videotape a walkthrough of the Survival Reasearch Labs. SRL has been making industrial sized remote control machines and performing with them around the world since 1978.


Violet Blue was my host and she showed me the workshop, machines and materials that are packed into this industrial building. There is a spirit of ingenuity in this place that is palpable. The raw creative potential here to make anything you can imagine made me giddy. Because all the machines were crammed into corners and stacked up and under tarps, you’ve really got to look at their website to see what the machines look like.


When we finished video-taping, Violet told me that they are being evicted from their workshop space. I’m thankful I had the opportunity to see it and make this video to share before it moves to a new location.

They have a performance coming up on August 11th in San Jose.

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. Here’s the teeny 3gp video for phone watchers. I’m trying out the interface for it’s ability to do widescreen 16×9 flash movies in native pixel size. For those hopelessly addicted to youtube, here’s your fix.

8 thoughts on “Make: Podcast – Survival Research Labs Walkthrough

  1. jovino says:

    This video hardly does SRL justice. You have to see them in action!

  2. thenickboy says:

    it’s not that we’re addicted to Youtube, we just HATE Itunes.

  3. dorkbotsf says:

    we’re not really getting evicted. the landlord raised the rent recently and it’s making it more practical to move soon but the urgency wasnt as dire as compared to a few months ago (though that may change). peoples’ support still much appreciated though, so come to the show aug 11! tix available already thru zero one:

  4. says:

    yeah, the bottom line is that we’ve been kicked out after a quarter century of making machines there. our move-out date was April and finding a space has been an issue, and so has money (we’re all volunteer). the landlord has been trying to get us out for a while; we knew late last year that we had to plan on moving. when we got the August show we planned on just moving after that, and in the meantime the landlord raised our rent. which is amazing to think of since we patch the crumbling roof ourselves, and in my opinion many of our mahcines and palate racks probably hold up the building. practically speaking the space is unusable by anyone but us, really. so we’ll see what happens. we have a possible space to move to, but this major-scale show will certainly be landmark for us in many ways.

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