Sunday, March 7, 2010

Rube Goldberg Machines Update, 2010

What's a Rube Goldberg machine?  It's "a deliberately over engineered
machine that performs a very simple task in a very complex fashion,
usually including a chain reaction. The expression is named after
American cartoonist and inventor Rube Goldberg." [Wikipedia]

1. RGMs in music videos

Last week US band OK Go released a new video that features a "Rube
Goldberg machine":

According to "The Making of OK Go's New Viral Video", "the video was
shot by a single Steadicam, but it took more than 60 takes, over the
course of two days, to get it right."

You may remember these guys from the award-winning treadmill video a
few years ago.  I'm not a huge fan of the band's music, but it makes
some interesting videos.  Check out the band's site for the "Here It
Goes Again", aka the treadmill song.

In 2005 another band, The Bravery, released a video with a rather
darker RGM for its song "An Honest Mistake":

2. RGMs in the home

An impressive RGM covering several rooms in a house, "The Contraption II"

Its predecessor, "The Contraption"

3. "The Mystery of the Yellow Room"
This French film from 2003 featured an RGM in the opening credits.  I
couldn't find any clips online, but I did find out that the book which
the movie is based on was published in 1907, the same year Rube
Goldberg started work with the New York Evening Journal.

4. The first commercial for the "Mouse Trap Game"

To see more examples, try searching "rube goldberg", "contraption",
"mouse trap" or "chain reaction machine" on YouTube.  You can also
read these related B-List posts:
* "Rube Goldberg Machines"
* "Clik Clak and The (Honda) Cog"