Limor “Ladyada” Fried As Lifehacker’s MacGyver of the Day

SXSW 2007

photo by Scott Beale

In a wonderfully detailed, video-rich post, Lifehacker goes Lady Gaga for Ladyada and our friend Phillip Torrone guestblogs on what makes Limor Fried Lifehacker’s MacGyver of the Day. It’s impossible not to be impressed and awed; after reading the post we think Fried is a tenacious and prolific genius who’s cut a powerful swath for women engineers, designers and makers. Watch only half the videos in which mastermind Fried explains from her secret underground laboratory the many ways you can create your own doomsday devices life simplifying gadgets, and you’ll see why we think she’s more like the woman MacGyver would run crying to for help like a little girl should he actually be caught in a tough spot and needed to, say, make a cell phone jammer. Limor (Adafruit Industries) is quoted saying,

“In contemporary Western society, electronic devices are becoming so prevalent that many people find themselves surrounded by technologies they find frustrating or annoying. The electronics industry has little incentive to address this complaint (…) By building functional prototypes that reflect equal consideration of technical and social issues, I identify three attributes of Noir products: Personal empowerment, participation in a critical discourse, and subversion.”

The post is like a “best of” Ladyada’s most effective and slightly subversive designs, explained in step-by-step DIY terms and gifted to any and all as open source projects. In addition, the videos featuring Fried and Torrone creating and experimenting with the edgy electronics are nerdy and subtly hilarious, making them fun to watch even if you can’t solder your way out of a paper bag. However, if you did want to learn how, we’re pretty sure they’ve got a humorous video tutorial. Don’t miss her fantastic weekly “ask an engineer” show.

Violet Blue
Violet Blue