WobbleWorks put together an incredible KickStarter recently, that raised over $2.3 million in funding, for a 3D printing pen. The 3Doodler is a pen that can draw in the air. You can hold it in your hand and draw 3D objects. No software or computer necessary.
Gangplank Labs has supported this project and should have a 3Doodler in hand by the end of the year. We will keep you updated, so when it comes in you can stop by and doodle with us. Happy Hacking.
It’s hiking season and it’s time to get out and enjoy the weather. We have a few hikes scheduled for the season. Hikes will begin at 9:30am and generally last 1-2 hours. Most hikes will be about 2 miles in length. More information will be posted as we get closer to the dates.
December 11th : Gilbert Riparian Preserve 2.0 Miles 0.5 Difficulty
December 18th : Piestewa Peak Alternate Summit 0.8 Miles 1.5 Difficulty
January 15th: San Tan Regional Park (Moonlight) 1.3 Miles 1.5 Difficulty
January 22nd: North Mountain 1.42 Miles 2.5 Difficulty
January 29th: Shaw Butte 2.7 Miles 2.0 Difficulty
Ryan Dinnan and Tanner Saadi take some time to reflect on changes in First Lego League from last year. They analyzed the good and bad of how things have changed. Including, bot design, board layout, challenges, overall topic, the team and much more.
The bot design is much better this year. We can attachments in more ways and much easier than last year. The board this year is harder because there are more things on it than last year. The challenges are harder this year because it feels impossible to get 100% this year. The topic this year is better because it is something you never thought was a problem. The team this year is better because we argue a lot less.
This year Lego League has been awesome. There are less people so now everyone is involved. Unlike last year when some people were sitting in the cornering watching instead. This year the board has more challenges so is more exciting. The challenges are difficult and easy. The topic is also better because it has a variety of things that can be chosen from it. The bot design is also better for adding attachments and easier to line up. In conclusion, I think this year is better than last year.
We have been working with the City of Chandler, Chandler Christian Community Center and Harvest for Humanity for the last six months to get a garden situated in Downtown Chandler. The vision was a garden for the community with the surplus going to feed the homeless at Chandler Christian Community Center. We are proud to say that they broke ground this last week!
Many people ask “What is a community garden?” and what are the benefits?
Here are some of the benefits.
- Improves the quality of life for people in the garden
- Provides a catalyst for neighborhood and community development
- Stimulates Social Interaction
- Encourages Self-Reliance
- Beautifies Neighborhoods
- Produces Nutritious Food
- Reduces Family Food Budgets
- Conserves Resources
- Creates opportunity for recreation, exercise, therapy, and education
- Reduces Crime
- Preserves Green Space
- Creates income opportunities and economic development
- Reduces city heat from streets and parking lots
- Provides opportunities for intergenerational and cross-cultural connections
If you want to find out more about community gardening happening at Gangplank, check out our Community Garden Forum. If you want to do some innovating gardening, check out the Garden Pool Story.
One of the reasons Gangplank moved to downtown Chandler was the city’s commitment to improving walkability with an emphasis on building up. The approval of the widening of Arizona Avenue for pedestrians was critical in our decision to move. The International Downtown Association (IDA) is giving Chandler an award for public space improvement enhancing urban design, physical function and economic viability. It is great to see the IDA agrees Chandler is making a move in the right direction.
“Each year the IDA Awards Jury recognizes organizations that utilize best practices in our industry,” said David Downey, IDA President and CEO. “The South Arizona Avenue Improvements are a shining example of excellent downtown management that delivers real results.”
The Arizona Chapter of the American Public Works Association selected this project as “Project of the Year” and it is a finalist in the Valley Forward Association’s Environmental Excellence Awards. The project received the Build Arizona Award from the Arizona Chapter of the Associated General Contractors for municipal/utilities construction projects costing under $10 million (awarded in February) and the General Design Award from the Arizona Chapter of the American Society of Landscape Architects (awarded in March).
 Gangplank Looking To Move Downtown
 Update on Gangplank Move
 Constructing Chandler’s Downtown Creative Class
It is no secret that Gangplank Jr is an experiment to see what could be possible in educating kids for the new economy. Here is a sample of what a school in the future might look like. If you are interested in seeing this sort of thing happen for your children, please sign up and get involved.
Improving at anything requires practice. Mastering a skill requires a LOT of practice. Unfortunately, it is difficult to practice public speaking, presenting, teaching or facilitation by yourself. In general, it requires some form of audience to simulate the real thing.
Groups like Toastmaster’s have existed for some time, but they seem to be rooted in the ways of the past, not those of the future. As an expirement we are going to try Gangplank Speakers. Continue reading
A few weeks ago we talked about “Gangplank Tucson and Beyond“. It’s no secret that we have been looking for a home on the West side of metro Phoenix to complete a segment that gives Gangplank coverage over the currently populated spectrum of the Sun Corridor.
When we were looking to move out of Gangplank 2.0 we set forth five characteristics that we felt were critical to our success. In looking for a West valley partner, we set out to find a municipality that also shared our values. We have learned that when motivated creators partner with a city that is ready to move into the future, a whole new level of civic engagement begins. We have been talking over the last few months with the City of Avondale and believe that they are the right partner. They understand the importance of a Phoenix-Tucson mega region and get collaboration on every level. We have been excited to see their council and economic development team actively working with the City of Chandler to pull the entire Valley forward. We were impressed with their involvement at CityCampAZ and that they want to bring something new to their school system. They have shown that they are serious about succeeding in the future.
Some things that have us excited about Avondale investing in their downtown:
- An updated General plan
- Emphasizing priority to old town redevelopment
- Focus on diversity and expansion of small business
- Regional collaboration
- Specifically calling out a measure to create a sense of place
- Investment in civic public spaces
- Strong push for rail travel along MC-85 and Main
- Plan specifically targeting old town
- Central Ave Bicycle Facility Project (An extreme commitment to pedestrian traffic)
- Facade Improvement Program
- Reduced fees for infill development <- pay attention other cities!
- Nearly $50 Million already invested in last decade
- Circular bus routes for neighborhood transportation
This is clearly a city that is interested in making radical change and attracting good talent. They are ready to be a regional player and a leader in moving Arizona forward. We hope that we can find a way in the near future to make them a part of the Gangplank family.
Potential Gangplank Avondale
When we chose to move to downtown Chandler last year we listed several things we were looking for in a new home. Continue reading
Connections are everywhere around you. The stepping stones to get where you want to be already exist under your feet. The secret to exposing them comes by sharing your ideas with others. Sharing exposes opportunities. Leveraging those opportunities provides the path to achieve your desires. Being able to leverage social capital to expose and leverage only accelerates the rate at which that path unfolds.
HeatSync Labs, an anchor company at Gangplank, brought up at an anchor meeting that they were considering purchasing a laser cutter for their workshop. Scott Cate, also an anchor at Gangplank, asked some detailed questions about the type of device they might be looking to obtain. He mentioned that he believed he could possibly get Epilog Laser to sponsor getting a device. Sixty days later an Epilog Legend 36EXT has been delivered to Gangplank.
The lesson here is that sharing opens up opportunity much more than hoarding does.
We plan on unveiling the laser cutter this week. It will be open for community use shortly. We are looking for community projects to highlight the power of such a device when made accessible to the masses. Expect classes, demonstrations and insanity in the coming months.
Epilog Legend 36EXT Features:
Wattage: 60 watts
Work Area: 36″ x 24″ (914 x 609 mm)
Red Dot Pointer, Air Assist, Auto Focus, Integrated Vector Grid & Vacuum Table, Radiance™ High Energy Optics, Permanent Job Storage, and more.