Endless spiralling model-train


[Read the post]


Cool and all. Waiting for the mobius strip train.


Doable, with few problems.

First, the train would have to be held to the tracks despite the gravity. Remedy: steel strip, magnet.

Second, the track would be shorted; usually the power is brought via left and right rail but with a Mobius strip they are both one. Remedy: third rail in the middle, or maybe an onboard battery. Or interrupting the rails, splitting the track to multiple segments, and intelligently switch between them depending on where the train is. Could be implemented by sensing the power introduced to the next segment by the train wheels shorting the gap, which would then be used for telling the electronics to switch the next segment on and the last segment off. But a third rail may be less complicated.

Edit: Also, screw metaphors. Load the train with those little vials, and you have a nice circular buffer for an autosampler for a lab.



This is oddly relaxing to watch.


Thanks to the Eames we have a mobius train already! I remember seeing this as a kid forty something years ago.


Am I missing something or is this unidirectional?


Or you could increase the density of cars in this:


8-Track Tapes!


Or tapes in dotmatrix printers. I used to replace the expensive ones with soldering-iron welded nylon tape for typewriters. Worked like a charm for about 10% the cost.


…in a metaphor for arguing with anti-GMO activists. Or anti-vaxx activists. Or anti-choice activists. Although really, for that metaphor to be complete, the whole thing would go off the rails every now and then.


Reminds me of the Tehachapi Loop.


To beings of only three dimensions, I suppose, he said smugly.


I am pro vaccination, believe that women have a right to their own reproductive systems, and am anti-GMO. What’s more, I became anti-GMO after spending time with a former chief scientist at Kew Gardens.
The problem with GMO isn’t frankenplants, but (a) the idea of modifying plants to be resistant to weedkillers and insecticides (which happen to be sold by the same people producing the GMO) - thus introducing problems of rapidly evolving resistance by cross-breeding and genetic transfer through viruses - and (b) trying to profit from poor farmers by applying US IP law via the WTO.

Use GMO to design plants resistant to insect attack and licence them freely as aid to developing countries, I’m in favor of that. Monsanto’s USP, kill it with nukes from orbit.


Two really big horns on that train. Bear scarer?



This is essentially how a platter film projector works.


Yes, I know what the picture really is. And my grandfather, may he rest in peace, could have given you a considerable number of sound engineering reasons why it is one of the most stupid ideas imaginable. Of which the first one is, what is the distance, and in what direction, between the point at which propulsive force is applied and the points at which guidance takes place?


That never ends well.


Recirculating ball bearings.