There’s a certain charm to a hand-written note that can’t be replicated by a printer. But y’know what’s even better than correspondence that’s been hand-written? A message that’s been sand-written.
More than just a bad pun, that’s actually what Ivan Miranda has done with his sand-drawing robot.
Claiming it “worked beautifully”, Miranda posted the following video of the device’s first run on a beach, where it churned out the note that probably best encapsulates Miranda’s personal ethos – “Make something”.
The sand-drawing robot essentially functions in the same way as your standard desktop printer, with a central unit that makes marks in the sand rolling back and forth on a central bar that hovers over the ‘canvas’ – a gorgeous, sandy beach (presumably in Spain).
The central bar itself moves on a pair of wheels located at either end of it.
Of course, that means that for the robot to be effective, it requires a large length of smooth, unadulterated sand for it to both roll without impediment, as well as make legible marks in the sand that equate to a clear message at the end.
And, as the video itself is an undefinted length of time-lapse, a simple, two-word message clearly takes quite a while to be printed out – so if you’re trapped on a deserted island, trying to get the attention of a plane passing overhead, you’re probably better off just drawing ‘HELP’ in the sand with your hands.
But the purpose of the device is not to save stranded souls – it’s all about art and beauty, like much of the rest of Miranda’s works.
“I love everything 3D printing, and I see digital fabrication as the tool of the future,” Miranda writes on his website, where he also describes himself as “a hyperactive youtuber and creator”.