Episode 527b – Blast from Jibo Past – 11/28/19

We’re all traveling this week for the Thanksgiving holiday, so here’s a vintage episode of This is Only a Test from the archive. The year is 2014. We’re talking Surface Pro 3, pinball cabinets, and Comcast cancelling woes. But most importantly, a personal assistant robot named Jibo has just been announced. Enjoy!

Hands-On with AWS DeepRacer Evo Autonomous Race Car!

Tested visits the labs of AWS DeepRacer, the 1/18th scale race car that learns to speed through a track through machine learning. Senior Applied Scientist Sahika Genc takes us under the hood of DeepRacer and the newly announced DeepRacer Evo to show how upgrades to the fully autonomous car now allow for head-to-head competition! Stay tuned for more from our visit to the DeepRacer lab, and for our coverage of the DeepRacer League at this year’s AWS re:Invent! (This video is sponsored by Amazon Web Services.)

Lumecluster’s Phoenix Gauntlet Lineup!

Melissa Ng–aka Lumecluster–shares with us her full Phoenix Gaunlet lineup for the first time at this year’s DesignerCon. We chat with Melissa about her journey to making these beautiful gothic-inspired gaunlets a product, and the Lumecluster identity that’s also present in her pendants and resin figures.

Tooling and Tool Collecting – Still Untitled: The Adam Savage Project – 11/26/19

We welcome back to the podcast Zach Radding–maker of awesome things and build contributor to Savage Builds! We talk about some of his favorite tools, injection mold tooling, and the kind of prototyping work he does for companies. Plus, Adam recaps some of his adventures on the set of The Expanse, and Norm lists his favorite things from DesignerCon!

The Monstrous Kaiju Sculptures of James Groman!

We catch up with artist and sculptor James Groman, who created one of our favorite designer toys of the past few years: King Korpse. At this year’s DesignerCon, Jim brought some one-off painted figures and walks us through his dry brush process. These grotesque takes of kaiju creatures are awesome!

Offworld: For All Mankind (2019)

What if the Soviets landed on the Moon before the United States? That’s the premise of Apple TV+’s new show, For All Mankind, which explores the consequences of a “red moon” and NASA’s response. Ariel is joined by Emily Calandrelli and Shannon Stirone to discuss the details of the show’s alternate history, and what the show’s writers took from NASA’s own history to build their story.

DesignerCon 2019 is This Weekend in Anaheim!

A public service announcement for fans of designer toys and supports of independent artists: DesignerCon is this weekend! It’s once again at the Anaheim Convention Center (next to Disneyland), and we’ll be there on Saturday interviewing makers and checking out their new pieces. Stay tuned for videos from the show, and here’s some geeking out about art toys with toy curator Benny from Tenacious Toys!

Tesla Cybertruck Test Ride and Impressions!

We ride in Tesla’s newly announced Cybertruck prototype! Just hours after its highly-anticipated unveiling, we meet up with Ryan McCaffrey of the Ride the Lightning Tesla podcast to discuss details we noticed from our test ride and getting up close with this futuristic electric pickup. It’s controversial and aggressively designed, with an aggressive price to boot.

Vintage Gundam Kit Converted to Statue Diorama!

We love using snap-fit model kits for dioramas, and this display at the recent Buildcon Gunpla event caught our eye: builder Benson Chou took a vintage gundam kit and repurposed it as an H0-scale diorama depicting an alternate future. He walks us through his paint process and tricks he used to make the plastic model look like an aged statue.