The walkalong glider | Flying dreams

This is such a great video of Tyler MacCready (son of Paul MacCready, the famous aerontautical engineer). He designed a ‘walkalong glider’ which anyone can build. Even a kid could do it!

It explains a bit about aerodynamics and genius design of a paper/styrofoam airplane. He called it the Air Surfer and its magic is basically a very simple principle: controllable slope soaring.  He was ten when he came up with the design for this awesome toy.

There are actually a couple of great instructables (on www.instructables.com) on how to make this yourself. Here is one ‘howto’ with paper and here is one with styrofoam

 

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Using Wii Controllers for my birdwings

In my 3d sketches I was thinking about using only the acceleration sensors of HTC smartphones. I recently decided to also use Wii controllers, for their excellent I2C accelerometers and gyroscopes. Watch the picture below for an explanation about the components.
Backplate

In the meanwhile I’ve been able to connect the gyro and accelerometer of a Wii Motion plus and Nunchuck for the backplate. The Buspirat is my big friend :-)

Also managed to combine the acceleration data of the WiiMote and Wildfire S in one application. Tomorrow the video about this will be online! 

 

Twitter: @Jarnosmeets80 or #Humanbirdwings

 

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Fanmail! Helping hands for my human birdwings

I’ve received some great tweets this week. I got some great input! Thank you all for that.

This weekend we will be testing the turnigy motors with the HTC module. Check my Youtube channel later this weekend for new material.

I also got this nice surprise mail by a nice girl called Floor! She’s writing her psychology master on dreams, and how people act on that. Great stuff! Because i’m actually working on making a dream come true. She wants to interview me and help a little.

With the  extra helping hands the hard work will fly!

Here is the mail she wrote:

Hi Jarno

Thanks for responding on my tweets on Twitter! I wonder if you are still looking for volunteers, because I really want to help you with your project!

You’ve seen my blog of the project I am working on myself. I am doing research in dreams and human behavior. Do you like to help me with my project by answering some questions about your dreams?

I like to do the interview in real-life, because I found Continue reading

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A short history of my inspiration

People always have been trying to fly in the same way as birds do. Beside my grandad, as I’ve posted before, there are more people who inspired me through the years. You guys all know Leonardo Da Vinci’s first flying machine sketches. And some of you might know Otto Lilienthal, who’s responsible for the kickoff in our history of aviation.

                  

A lot of people don’t know Da Vinci wasn’t the first. Almost 1200 years ago Abbas Ibn Firnas designed a set of wings which he intended to fly with. Many years later, around 1475, Leonardo Da Vinci designed his human powered ornithopter which in turn still inspires many other flying enthousiasts over the world. Both pioneers are big inspirators to me, because their dream wasn’t just a dream, but something they sacred believed in.
Continue reading

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Found grandpa’s old sketches

I asked my mother to look for the sketches of the flying bicycle my granddad once designed. After a long search she found them in the attic! Only 3 left unfortunately..

As a child I was always very intrigued by these drawings, back then I really believed that my granddad would once be able to fly on this bike. Later on I realised that this would never be possible, it was his naive, childish fantasy. The images of his flying bike always have been floating around in the back of my mind. For this reason my grandpa is still my biggest inspiration for starting this ‘Human Birdwings’ project. My dream about flying started because of his sketches. So I’m really happy my mother found these. Wondering where all the other drawings went, I’m quite sure there were much more!

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