MEGATech Showcase: LEGO Madness Beth Snyder February 23, 2013 Features It’s not like I didn’t know there was a bunch of LEGO products, projects, and related merchandise out there. It’s that I didn’t realize how often it comes up until I started really paying attention. I’ve had to pare down several of the items I had saved to feature because there really were entirely too many of them. The nice part about that is I get to be selective and only talk about the ones I find the neatest. So, without further ado, here is the latest LEGO Showcase! First up is the Ghostbusters Headquarters. It’s got almost too much attention to detail, but that’s what I love about it. Created by by LEGO pro Orion Pax, this one isn’t a set you can buy, but you can look at a ton of pictures in the source article and drool over it. I did. Not only did I grow up watching the Ghostbusters movies, but I was actually in the second one. We were in New York on a church trip and were just coming up from the subway when they were filming a crowd shot. Not that you can see any of us in the movie, but I know we were there. Source: Geekologie In case the picture doesn’t help you, let me explain. This is a 3D printing machine made of LEGO, designed by a 15-year-old kid. We all know 3D printers are the next greatest thing, but as of now, it’s pretty cost-prohibitive to put one in your home office. Mario Papachristou, the kid in question, decided to see if he could make one for himself out of LEGO Mindstorms bricks based on the RepRap Mendel 3D printer. It’s currently under development, so I can’t tell you if or when it might actually be available or the price if it is, but even if it ends up costing as much as a regular one, it would be worth it. It’s LEGO after all! Source: Damn Geeky If a printer isn’t your thing, how about a loom? This loom made of LEGO can knit you a scarf, which will definitely come in handy with the brutal winter we’ve been having. This one was designed and built by Tomasz Zaj?c, and it is fully functional. It’s not quick, but then neither would I be if I were trying to knit a scarf. Of course, this one isn’t commercially available either, but it was built using a Mindstorms NXT 2.0 kit (which sells for about $300.00 US) as well as PF motors (which are going for around $30.00 US a set). Basically, it’d be a lot cheaper to learn how to knit… but not nearly as cool. Source: Geek.com For those of you who would rather see something in the weapons category, how about a six-foot Armageddon sword? This piece was built by Sean and Steph Mayo as part of the Iron Builder 3.0 Tournament, and is constructed entirely of Technic pieces without anything else for support. Which is really impressive if you read back a bit…this thing is six feet long. You can hold it by the handle and perhaps even wave it around and it won’t fall apart. I don’t know that I would recommend actually hitting anything with it, but it still looks really cool. I kinda want one, although I know better than to think I’d be able to figure out how to make it since it’s not a kit you can buy. Source: Nerd Approved This just makes me giggle. It’s a LEGO catbus, which is apparently a character from what was supposed to be a very popular movie in 1988, but which I have never heard of. You’ll have that sometimes. The movie, in case you’re as clueless as me, is My Neighbor Totoro. Created by Tomoyuki Wakata, this version of the character has wheels and a handle (unlike the one in the movie) making it easier for kids to play with it. When they move him back and forth with the handle, his head, legs and tail move. Still, the reason I included it is because the look on its face makes me laugh. And I suppose it goes without saying that this isn’t a kit you can buy. Source: Technabob Belkin has teamed up with LEGO to bring you cases for your iPhone and iPad that are also toys, and I love them for it. Not that I own either of those things, but this makes it easier to consider one for my next phone. Unlike similar products you may have seen, these are actually officially licensed by LEGO, and users can customize their own cases using additional LEGO pieces. I can’t seem to find information on pricing, but they’re supposed to hit shelves this spring. Source: Gizmodiva You recognize the Red Five X-Wing Starfighter, no? If not, for shame. Your punishment is to immediately go and rent all of the Star Wars movies and you may not come back until you know what I’m talking about. Or…I suppose you can keep reading if you want, since this is actually a kit you can buy and you’ll learn while you build. It comes with 1,558 Lego pieces and features opening wings and cockpit, a special display stand, data sheet label and R2-D2. This is a must-have addition to anyone’s Star Wars LEGO collection, and will be available in May for around $200.00 US. Source: Geeky Gadgets While not a playset or a customized creation, this puts the “awe” in “awesome”, doesn’t it? Travellers Tales and Warner Bros. have just released new character images and concept art showing some potential backgrounds for the new LEGO Marvel Comics game, and this might actually turn me into a gamer even though I’ve managed to avoid it thus far. The game will feature 100 characters from Marvel, all done in LEGO. The game is supposed to be out this fall, just in time for your Christmas wish list. Source: Nerd Approved OK, quick name your dream place to work! If you didn’t say “Qubic Tax,” I won’t hold it against you because you probably haven’t heard of them. I hadn’t either. But now I want to work there. This wall is in their office, and yes, it does contain LEGO minifigs on an entire wall. Apparently, a consulting agency called Acrylicize convinced them it would increase productivity, so they went with it. Each minifig is dressed to work in a different industry, illustrating in a very fun way the kind of taxes that are filed. I have to be honest, though…I don’t think it would increase my productivity. I’d be too busy playing. Source: Ubergizmo From the “things that never occurred to me” files…this is a retired LEGO mold. Of course it makes sense that there are molds to make LEGO bricks, and of course it totally makes sense that at some point they would wear out and need to be replaced. But this one went above and beyond the call of duty in making our playtime fun by making 120,000,000 bricks before being put out to pasture for a well-deserved retirement. Complete with plaque in honour of its service. I think that’s neat. Source: Oh Gizmo! Have you ever wondered about the workshops some of these amazing LEGO projects come out of? Just knowing the number of bricks involved in some of the creations makes me think they’ve got to be pretty impressive. Unfortunately, no credit is given as to whose workshop this one is, but it really makes me want to go play. Although I think if its one of those LEGO master builders who win competitions with their designs, probably they don’t want someone like me coming in and messing up all their stuff. Which is too bad, really. It would be a total blast! Source: Nerd Approved The last item in our collection is one that makes me giggle, but I would totally use it at work. I’ve got probably a dozen different water bottles, all bought in an effort to be able to tell which one is mine when they’re all floating around in the coolers. No one I work with has one of these, so I think I need one. It’s made of BPA- and pthalate-free plastic, so no worries about using it. Not only does the head unscrew to allow you to fill it and give you access to your beverage of choice, but the bottom unscrews as well making for easy cleaning and, more importantly, drying. Make one yours for $14.95 US. Source: Foolish Gadgets Share This With The World!