Episode 265 – Jibo! Make Me a Sandwich – 7/17/2014

This week, Will, Norm, and Jeremy discuss big changes (and layoffs) at Microsoft, the hidden meaning of Satya Nadella’s big memo, Aereo’s attempts to become a cable company, cancelling Comcast, and the way we’d really use a domestic robot. Enjoy!

Animating Robocop 2’s Cain Robot with Phil Tippett

One of science fiction film’s most memorable and menacing creatures is the Cain cyborg from Robocop 2. Cain was brought to life with a full-size robot prop and several intricately machined stop-motion puppets, all which have survived and live at Tippett Studio. We get up close with these iconic props and chat with legendary special effects animator Phil Tippett about the process of designing and animating Cain.

Premium: Norm Interviews Weta Digital about CG Creatures

One more video from our visit to the Dawn of the Planet of the Apes press junket! Here, Norm interviews Weta Digital’s Director, Academy Award winner Joe Letteri, and Visual Effects Supervisor Dan Lemmon about the challenges of creating photo-realistic CG characters with today’s rendering technology. Read the full text of the interview here.

Premium: Norm interviews Matt Reeves and Andy Serkis

So this was an interesting experience. We were invited to the premiere and press junket for the new Dawn of the Planet of the Apes movie, and Norm had the opportunity to interview director Matt Reeves and actor Andy Serkis about the motion capture and filming technology of the film. It was our first time doing one of these quick sit-down interviews, and we tried to pack as much into the allotted four minutes as possible! Read the full text of the interview here.

Building a Custom Computer Desk, Part 4

After a month of building, Will’s almost done with his custom computer desk project! In this episode, Will finishes welding the legs together, and preps the top of the desk for mounting to the frame. It’s all coming together, with lessons and tips learned from makers following along with the project. (This video was brought to you by Premium memberships on Tested. Learn more about how you can support us with memberships!)

Michael McMaster Builds a Droid for Lucasfilm

Friend of Tested (and real-life Wall-E robot builder) Michael McMaster has revealed that he’s been working on a new Star Wars astromech. It’s name is Chopper, and the droid is one of the key characters from the upcoming Star Wars Rebels animated series. Chopper is just the latest of McMaster’s many robot projects–the veteran R2-D2 builder is currently also working on a brand new “ultimate” R2 unit, as well as an R4-P17! We have to visit his shop again to check them out!

Tour of Adam Savage’s Cave!

Somewhere in San Francisco is a hidden workshop of wonder. A place where iconic characters, creatures, and props from cult favorite movies are pulled from the screen into reality. Adam Savage’s Cave is the Mythbusters host’s personal sanctum, the place he goes not only to build his painstaking creations but where he displays a lifetime’s collection of oddities, eclectic memorabilia, and film props. We’re pleased to give you an exclusive tour of the shop, and announce that it’s not on Google Street View! (The entrance is hidden under a manhole cover somewhere in San Francisco, so you’ll have to find it!)