Tales of inspiration in school and
debates on artistic expression.
I really enjoy your magazine and read it cover to
cover. One thing I like is the small gadgets and projects in the magazine. It’s so interesting I can’t stop
reading it! I am 12 years old and we get it at school.
My whole family loves it too.
—Michael Jon Nisly, Hutchinson, Kan.
I’m no Judy Garland fan (nor do I dislike her, for
that matter), and I’m rarely the first person to push
for political correctness. But I have to say that in the
Ghost Phone article [Volume 16, “The Disembodied
Voice of Judy Garland Speaks”], the suggestion of
pills and liquor on the night table is in really poor
taste. Given that Garland died of a drug overdose,
I would think that her family and friends would find
the article ugly.
MAKE, to me, is a classy publication that rates
“things which create wonder” high in priority, and
rates the salacious and snarky very low in priority.
This feels more like Perez Hilton. This piece was
below you, and I felt very put off by it. Not the best
editorial call, MAKE.
—John Cornwell, San Francisco, Calif.
Author Greg MacLaurin responds: My focus
for the article was to share the Ghost Phone idea
with everyone. The idea of bringing old telephones
alive by hiding an MP3 player inside is simple and
wonderful, and I want other people to create their
own art with it. One person told me that she has
some cassette tapes of her long-lost mother on an
answering machine, and now she wants to create
her own Ghost Phone with that. It’s perfect! And
since the Judy Phone was my first Ghost Phone, it
made sense to use it as an example. But the article
is about process, and not the Judy Phone.
Some people don’t like the Judy Phone. But when
people see it in person, they sit on the bench, pick
up the phone, look at the pills and booze, and listen
to Judy talking about her own life. They begin to
think a bit about who she was. This is art that has
layers. Sure, it seems strange and silly on the surface, but that wasn’t my intention, and fortunately
it’s not the impression that people get when they
Make: Volume 17
I’ve been surrounded by lots of death and tragedy,
and my art reflects this. It’s not unfeeling. It’s
deeper and truer. Like the Judy Phone.
I just received the latest MAKE, and was quite
pleased to see one of the letters from readers was
a positive note from a 5th grader on his wind tunnel
build based on my article [Volume 15, “Model Wind
Tunnel”]. This brought an ear-to-ear smile to my face.
A side note: This week I was asked to give a talk at
my son’s elementary school about aerospace engineering. Besides the wind tunnel, I brought a rocket
cam from MAKE [Volume 07, “Rocket-Launched
Camcorder”] that was a huge hit — especially when
I played the video. There were tons of energized kids
wanting to go off and build things afterward.
My next project is mounting a CVS camcorder on
a Pinewood Derby car to film a race as it happens,
then next, building a 5-launch-rod digital model
rocket controller for the Cub Scout rocket derby.
Fun stuff! What a great magazine!
—Doug Desrochers, Burke, Va.
The name of photographer Pat Molnar was misspelled
in MAKE, Volume 16. We regret the error.
In Steps 2 and 3 of “ Hacking the Glade Wisp” in
Volume 16, references to a 150MHz signal should have
been to a 150kHz signal.
On page 155 of “Chatter Telephone” in Volume 16, the
Hang-Up Hinge instructions ask you to drill “four ¼"
holes through the sides of the phone,” but they should
in fact be four 1" holes.
In “ DIY-brary” in Volume 16, several errors eluded fact-check: Rick and Megan Prelinger shared an interest in
the American landscape (not landscaping), and Rick
considered restarting Landscape (not Landscaping)
magazine. Also, the Prelinger Library and the Internet
Archive challenged a 1992 copyright law that automatically extends copyrights up to 75 years (not 50).
Thanks for the corrections, Rick, and we’re sorry for