© 2016 The Frivolous Engineering Company
The Frivolous Engineering Company

Blog:

April 30, 2016

Today is the anniversary of the birthday of Claude Shannon, who built the first Useless Machine (or as he called it, The Ultimate Machine)! If you want to know just how important this gentleman is to computers and information theory, he “defined the basic unit of information, which John Tukey of Bell Laboratories dubbed a binary unit and then a bit, as a message representing one of two states.” An avid juggler, he built a juggling machine: If you want to learn more about the ultimate tinkerer, prankster, and Father of Information Theory please check out our history page on this website or surf over to spectrum.ieee.org and read a very in-depth article  on the life and times of Claude Shannon.

April 17, 2016

Another useless milestone: the Useless Machine build instructions on Instructables.com surpassed 1.5 million views today.

April 12, 2016

Little Fendrich Buds Cigarillo Retail Box From 1955: A friend had this cigarillo box in his collection of antique nick-nacks and it was so cool I had to snap some pictures and upload it. Click through to see this collection of photos including the tax warning: The cigars herein contained were manufactured to retail at more than 4¢ each and not more than 6¢ each and are so tax paid”

April 7, 2016

I’ve uploaded another Frivolous Engineering YouTube video called “The Turn-Me-Over Stone”! It’s a demonstration of my Epilog laser engraving an unusual material: stone. The reasoning behind this vid is to show the versatility of laser system. I’ve mostly been using my Epilog Helix on acrylic, cutting and engraving the parts that go into the Useless Machine. But there is so much more that a laser engraver/cutter can do, and this is just one example. I’m also making an effort to go outside my ‘comfort zone’ and actually appear in front of the camera. Usually a glimpse of my hand is all that ever shows up in my videos. I hope you enjoy The Turn-Me-Over Stone, and I encourage you to subscribe to my YouTube Channel, leave comments, and share my videos.

March 14, 2016

Today the total view-count on the Frivolous Engineering YouTube Channel surpassed 18 MILLION VIEWS!!! I know that compared to the YouTube Titans out there, it really doesn’t compare. But most of the views come from only a couple of Useless Machine videos, so I consider it an accomplishment. YouTube keeps track of lots of data, but they only have been tracking watch time for just over 4 years. So an accurate figure for the total watch time can only be estimated.  The average watch time for my videos is 33 seconds, so times that by 18 million give a total of 594 million seconds of watch time. Thats 9.9 million minutes, or 165000 hours,  or 6875 days, or 18.8 years of watch time for my videos. These numbers boggle my mind.

February 28th, 2016

The Soldering & Assembly Instructions are now back on- line!  Woo-Hoo!!!! Enjoy the high-rez electronics eye- candy!

February 25, 2016: 

Useless History:  The Wall Street Journal published an article on Useless Machines a couple of years ago. Abigail Pesta, the author of the article went so far as to interview Marvin Minsky, the man who came up with the idea of the Useless Machine. This is probably the most in-depth article to date on The Useless Machine and I recommend it.

Feb. 15, 2016:

The Rebuild is Progressing! We’ve got the store back up and Thomas H. of Loveland, CO was the first customer to dive in and purchase a Fully Assembled Deluxe Useless Machine.  Thanks Thomas.  You are definitely not useless!

Feb. 15, 2016:

New Website!  Some Russian 12 year-old hacked our website during the Super Bowl.  Clearly, he doesn’t like Useless Machines, or football. Recovering from this mishap is in progress and we will have things back as soon as possible. In the mean time, I ask our loyal customers to purchase as many Useless Machines as you can so I can hire a security expert to prevent this from happening again.
Little Fendrich Buds Cigarillo Box 1955 Top Lid
Copyright©2016 The Frivolous Engineering Company
The Frivolous Engineering Company The Frivolous Engineering Company

Blog:

April 30, 2016

Today is the anniversary of the birthday of Claude Shannon, who built the first Useless Machine (or as he called it, The Ultimate Machine)! If you want to know just how important this gentleman is to computers and information theory, he “defined the basic unit of information, which John Tukey of Bell Laboratories dubbed a binary unit and then a bit, as a message representing one of two states.” An avid juggler, he built a juggling machine: If you want to learn more about the ultimate tinkerer, prankster, and Father of Information Theory please check out our history page on this website or surf over to spectrum.ieee.org and read a very in-depth article on the life and times of Claude Shannon.

April 17, 2016

Another useless milestone: the Useless Machine build instructions on Instructables.com surpassed 1.5 million views today.

April 12, 2016

Little Fendrich Buds Cigarillo Retail Box From 1955: A friend had this cigarillo box in his collection of antique nick-nacks and it was so cool I had to snap some pictures and upload it. Click through to see this collection of photos including the tax warning: The cigars herein contained were manufactured to retail at more than 4¢ each and not more than 6¢ each and are so tax paid”

April 7, 2016

I’ve uploaded another Frivolous Engineering YouTube video called “The Turn-Me-Over Stone”! It’s a demonstration of my Epilog laser engraving an unusual material: stone. The reasoning behind this vid is to show the versatility of laser system. I’ve mostly been using my Epilog Helix on acrylic, cutting and engraving the parts that go into the Useless Machine. But there is so much more that a laser engraver/cutter can do, and this is just one example. I’m also making an effort to go outside my ‘comfort zone’ and actually appear in front of the camera. Usually a glimpse of my hand is all that ever shows up in my videos. I hope you enjoy The Turn-Me-Over Stone, and I encourage you to subscribe to my YouTube Channel, leave comments, and share my videos.

March 14, 2016

Today the total view-count on the Frivolous Engineering YouTube Channel surpassed 18 MILLION VIEWS!!! I know that compared to the YouTube Titans out there, it really doesn’t compare. But most of the views come from only a couple of Useless Machine videos, so I consider it an accomplishment. YouTube keeps track of lots of data, but they only have been tracking watch time for just over 4 years. So an accurate figure for the total watch time can only be estimated.  The average watch time for my videos is 33 seconds, so times that by 18 million give a total of 594 million seconds of watch time. Thats 9.9 million minutes, or 165000 hours,  or 6875 days, or 18.8 years of watch time for my videos. These numbers boggle my mind.

February 28th, 2016

The Soldering & Assembly Instructions are now back on- line!  Woo-Hoo!!!! Enjoy the high-rez electronics eye- candy!

February 25, 2016: 

Useless History:  The Wall Street Journal published an article on Useless Machines a couple of years ago. Abigail Pesta, the author of the article went so far as to interview Marvin Minsky, the man who came up with the idea of the Useless Machine. This is probably the most in- depth article to date on The Useless Machine and I recommend it.

Feb. 15, 2016:

The Rebuild is Progressing! We’ve got the store back up and Thomas H. of Loveland, CO was the first customer to dive in and purchase a Fully Assembled Deluxe Useless Machine.  Thanks Thomas.  You are definitely not useless!

Feb. 15, 2016:

New Website!  Some Russian 12 year-old hacked our website during the Super Bowl.  Clearly, he doesn’t like Useless Machines, or football. Recovering from this mishap is in progress and we will have things back as soon as possible. In the mean time, I ask our loyal customers to purchase as many Useless Machines as you can so I can hire a security expert to prevent this from happening again.
Little Fendrich Buds Cigarillo Box 1955 Top Lid