Tuesday, January 29, 2008

My First Knit

Rear view of my first knit. The yellow thing is the holder. The green strand and pink strands are parallel to each other, with the red strand perpendicular. The red strand is woven between the loops of the green and pink strands.

Here I am stretching the knit with the white holder thingy attached to the pink strand...note how the green and pink strands come apart, with the red strand acting as a hinge

Here I let go of the white holder thingy. The pink strand bounces back and again is parallel to the green strand. How does one optimize the design of green, red and pink strands to get maximumum extension upon pull and maximum force upon release? That would be a nice question to ask Juan...also, I am not sure how gravity affects the behavior of this thing...how does strand length affect the elastic force? Does it obey Hooke's Law? That's just but a few questions to think about...unfortunately, knitting is really not my thing.

Last Friday, we had a very special guest visiting us in my lab: Prof. Juan P. Hinestroza. Prof. Hinestroza is faculty at Cornell University, in the Department of Fiber Science and Apparel Design. Not only did Juan deliver an awesome departmental seminar about nanofunctionalized
textiles and nanofiber fabrication, but he taught me how to knit in SL! Together, we made a really nice, simple knit in my Second Nature lab. The knit is made of 3 strands, each with two loops. The three strands are physical in nature. One strand is fixed to a knit holder. The middle strand serves as a link. The third strand has a little knob to which I stuck a white thingy that allows me to pull on it so as to test its elasticity. If one pulls on the third strand, the third strand swivels away from the first strand. If one releases the pull, the third strand swivels back to its original position, parallel to the first strand. The middle strand is perpendicular to the first and third strand. The strands are held together by their topology --no real linkages. And they are able to move and swivel relative to each other. In RL, knits are used to make elastic textiles from rigid fibers. How this works is clearly illustrated by the SL knit. According to Juan, The ancient Egyptians invented this knit, around 5,000 years ago. Juan was so impressed with the SL knit, that he got an avatar of his own. I have seen him in SL a few times now. I think he is making a needle....

1 comment:

Jean-Claude Bradley said...

Wow - I wonder if the Lindens thought people would be experimenting with Second Life like this - I can't wait to see what you're going to try next :)

About Me

I am Assistant Professor at the University of Michigan College of Pharmacy, Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences