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1. principles and practices, project management (Jan 29,
Sketch of my final project
I would like to make prototype products which combine open
digital design and local common resources as an appropriate
technology in Japan, where local common resources include rice
straw, bamboo, and several plants.
In the past century, the ideology of mass production has shaped
the manufacturing landscape of today. Mark Frauenfelder,
editor-in-chief of MAKE magazine stated that we lived in “Dark
Ages of Making” in 1970s-2000, and since then our technologies
have become more and more black-boxed under the mass-production
In the meantime, the realization of the finiteness of natural
resources and irreversible environmental impacts caused by such
human activities have prompted the needs for a new manufacturing
system that can sustain the needs of both present and future
generations within the earth’s carrying capacity.
In fact, the current technologies such as small scale
manufacturing machineries (e.g., computer numerical
control (CNC) machines, laser cutting machines, and rapid
prototyper), personal computers, open source
hardwares/softwares, and the internet encourage individuals to
become modern makers, and diversify the landscape of the
I believe that the evolution of these new manufacturing systems
roots in traditional (non-mass-production) manufacturing to some
extent. For example, in Japan, ordinary people once made some
tools and crafts by themselves for the needs of daily life,
which we call Mingu, Heimin-kogei, or Mingei
in Japanese. There is much to learn from traditional
manufacturing for the emerging manufacturing systems.
However, the valuable knowledge on local resource management and
use, and environmentally responsible design accumulated through
trial-and-error is now threatened to go extinction due to the
I tried to live with the minimum amount of electricity and gas.
Indeed, there is neither electricity nor gas infrastructures in
my apartment. I terminated my contract with electricity and gas
companies one and half years ago. I have been relying on tools
called appropriate technology such as mini solar panel, kinetic
powered light and radio, and so on. By demonstrating the
personal experience, I would like to prove that I could somehow
live my decent life under such circumstance.
A day in my room: mini solar panel (left) and my favorite
backpack with chair (central).
A day in my room: wall kitchen cabinet (right).
As my final project, I will focus on and draw from Japanese Kioiko,
Shoiko, or Seoi-hashigo, a wooden rack with straw
shoulder straps for carrying loads on the back in mountainous
areas. And, I would like to fabricate a backpack-type carry bone
with a modular system that collect, purify, store, and
distribute water, to gain drinking, washing and bath water from
Photo taken by my granduncle Koshiro Tsuda in 1963.
Build a personal site in the class archive
I created this archive site with SeaMonkey
composer. SeaMonkey is a free and open source internet
In the class archive, we use Mercurial,
which is a free, distributed version control management tool. I
followed the tutorial for installing Mercural on the Mac