Simone Davalos, Engineer at Other Machine Co.

Simone Davalos -- Cool Tools Show #24

This week, engineer and robot-maker Simone Davalos shares tools that fuel her passions and support her hobbies. Simone recommends tools to enable you to build combat-ready bots for the next RoboGames, as well as tools to help you think deeply about the next thousand years.

Show Notes:

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The Othermill $2200

“The Othermill is at the very top of my list for one of my cool tools, and it’s not because I work with for the company that makes it. It’s because it’s really useful, and really fun. It’s a tiny, tiny desktop CNC mill… You drop the file right into our software, and it does it, and you don’t have to mess with learning machining first, which is a huge hurdle for most people when they’re using machine shop tools, and want to cut out things. It’s also really good for crafts, it’s really good for kids to learn how to make things with machines…”

Gross Anatomy Dissection Kit $14

“I find myself using it all the time for electronics. I build mostly cocktail robots when I’m not doing anything else… I have 2 different sizes of hemostat, I have a scalpel blade, I have a couple of different kinds of forceps, ones got teeth on the end, so it’s really easy to grip stuff really tightly. It’s got a probe so I can push wires out of the way.”

RoboGames Admission: $25-250

“You don’t have to use a certain kind of kit. You don’t have to be from any particular country as long as you can show up, and compete, and having a working robot, everyone’s welcome. There’re about 60 different events. Everything from tiny little sumo robots that push each other out of the ring, to your big standard bog, giant killer robots that shoot fire, and bang each other against the walls of the bullet proof arena. That’s always a crowd pleaser, and it’s always a lot of fun. After 12 years of doing this, it’s built quite an amazing, literally international community around it.”

BoeBot $170

“My all time favorite beginner robot book is, Robotics with the Boe-Bot. It’s made by Parallax. It’s hands down the best written book I have ever read on how to build a robot when you’ve never touched a circuit before, ever.”


The Manual For Civilization

“The ‘Manual for Civilization’ was started by the Long Now Foundation, which I am proudly a member, and I used to work for. It is a really splendid, beautifully curated collection of books by thinkers, and writers, and dreamers, and artists, and it’s all about what you would do. If civilization ended what knowledge would you need to restart it?”

The Interval at Long Now

“It’s essentially a cocktail bar where you can go and talk about long term thinking, lofty concepts, read these books. It’s a really great all-in-one thing, and it’s to get people to think long term. To think about not the next 5 years, or the next 10 years, but the next hundred years.”


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