One of my favourite blogs for odd-making-in-a-borderline-electronic-industrial-design-vein is that of the Evil Mad Scientist Laboratories. Most of what Windell and Lenore post is far from junk, but select persons will soon be receiving a box full of the stuff in the mail as part of their new game, snappily entitled 'The Great Internet Migratory Box Of Electronics Junk'.
Described by Lenore as 'a progressive lending library of electronic components', the idea is to send around a box full of junk that may inspire a new project. The recipients remove as many items as they wish, and replace them with new ones, then add some names to the book in the box before sending the whole thing on to someone else in the book. Its a beautiful idea for collaboration through physical and virtual networks (results will be posted on each of the participants' websites), and a great way to approach a new project or get an angle on an existing one.
The Evil Mad Scientists are no strangers to innovation and seeing beauty in the details: They are the minds behind Candyfab, the open source 3D printer that uses sugar as a building medium. DIY, cheap(er) and smells like caramel when you're printing!
EMSL are also great at matching bits of hardware with new functions in really creative ways, such as their component wine charms (above) and their really, really simple motor, and their hugely successful Bristlebots, miniature motivators from Toothbrush heads and mobile phone motors (also above). Best of all, the Evil Mad Scientists are all about open source, so all their projects are explained with painstaking lucidity for others to recreate.
All images from Oskay's Flickr photostream