Ollie: a DIY autonomous robotic blimp

I first encountered Ollie at a festival at Parsons The New School for Design, New York City. The designer of this buoyant creature describes Ollie as a ‘DIY autonomous robotic blimp’. Whaaaaaaaaat? And what does one do with it? Nothing. Absolutely nothing. And therein lies the charm.

I found myself mesmerized by Ollie’s graceful, meditative dance as it drifted about the atrium. Ollie wiggled its phosphorescent ‘ears’. It dipped, swayed, seesawed, tipped and turned around the room. I felt my emotions rolling with Ollie’s playfulness. I enjoyed a sweet, calm respite from my technologically saturated life. I imagine many Ollies populating hospital emergency rooms or anywhere a dose of serenity would do one good.