Unlocked achievement: macroscale buckytube fabrication.

The year 1985 was known for many strange and wonderful things: Misfits of Science was on prime time television, William Gibson was working on the novel Count Zero, and a scientific discovery flew beneath the radar of just about everyone except people working in the field of materials science. Three scientists in two countries working together discovered a brand new allotrope of carbon, a molecule comprised of sixty carbon atoms arranged in a spherical shape. The molecule was named buckminsterfullerene after the visionary architect R. Buckminster Fuller, due to the molecule's resemblance to a geodesic dome. Buckyballs, as they came …

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First steps toward programmable matter?

Arguably, since the dawn of the solid state era the human race has been experimenting with the development of computronium, or forms of matter optimized for the processing of information. The doped silicon semiconductors that make up the CPU and much of the supporting circuitry of the computer you're using right now are variants of computronium (albeit very primitive when compared with the above link). Most circuitry as we know it today has a few limitations that we don't often think about, however. First of all, it's on the fragile side. Drop a circuit board when it's not inside a …

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Working with software RAID in Linux.

This post assumes that you've worked enough with Linux to know about the existence of software RAID in the Linux v2.6 kernel series, though not necessarily much about it.

If you're not familiar with it, RAID (Redundant Array of Inexpensive Disks) is a set of techniques that replicate data across multiple hard drives on the assumption that, at some point, a drive is going to fail. If the data can be found in some form on another drive, the data is still available. Otherwise you're out of luck unless you made backups, and if you're really unfortunate, your machine …

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Some people will do anything to pack just one more bookcase into a room...

I love books. Chances are, you love books, too. The problem with that is that there is never enough room for all of the books you've read, and never enough for all the ones that you want to get around to reading because physical space is at a premium, and pesky structures like doors get in the way of building bookcases. That is, unless you do what this guy did and build a classic-style "door hidden behind a hinged bookcase". Rather than buy bookcase kits from a furniture store, kenbob@instructables designed his own bookcases and figured out how to …

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