The Chaos Machine

The Chaos Machine

The Chaos Machine is a large automated marble machine. What makes it chaotic is that everyone is invited to modify the machine, limited only by imagination and the laws of motion.

What inspired you to make this project?:
I first encountered a Chaos Machine at a convention in 2007. After playing with other machines in 2008 and 2009, I bought a kit for myself. A friend of mine gave me a used kit, my wife found several on auction sites and I was off and collecting the kits. By the fall of 2009, I had enough kits to set up a nice-sized machine, so I did so at the gaming convention I run. In 2010 I took the Chaos Machine to its first Maker Faire, and I've been exhibiting it 4-5 times a year since.

It's a great exhibit, because it engages kids, and because they can play with the machine, they teach themselves about what works and what doesn't -- physics, engineering, and debugging -- without feeling like a class.

Categories: Engineering, Education, Kids & Family, Kinetic Art, Science