Page 1

September 22, 2010


A Newsletter by Steampunk Illumination Society

THIS ISSUE'S CONTENTS: The Editor's Pen Minutes From August & September The Difference Engine #2 (Article) Future Meetings & Events Birthdays & Welcomes Poetry, Our Friends & Funny Stuff Memorable Moments & Steampunk Reinventions Society Committee & Society Information

Page 1 Page 1-2 Page 3 Page 3-4 Page 4 Page 4-5 Page 5 Page 6

THE EDITOR'S PEN Welcome to our second edition of the Cogs n' Gears newsletter for Steampunk Illumination Society. For this edition, we have a wonderful article written by two fellow members, announcements, reviews of our last couple of meetings, and plenty more. Our last meeting on September 11th was quite the turn out! I lost count well after 50 people, and know there were people still looking around for a place to sit once we'd gotten good and into our meeting. We apologize for the tiny space, but certainly didn't anticipate so many wonderful faces being present. No complaints here though! I loved meeting everyone that I could make my way around too. Captain and I were absolutely ecstatic about the attendance levels. Now, if this keeps up, we're certainly going to need a bigger meeting spot for our future meetings! Thank you to all who attended, visited, and signed up with us. We hope to see you again at more meetings. We have great things in store for SIS yet. Thank you to Professor & Mrs. Camera Obscura for their wonderful article on “The Difference Engine #2”. I know I enjoyed reading it, and found it very intriguing to read. Also, thanks goes out to Toby again for his donation of endless poetry. He's also taken quite a bit of time out to try to help us get a bit organized on what music can be really deemed “steampunk”. I've had a small peek at the list, and can honestly say, “WOW!” I have a lot of listening to do! I imagine we'll have that list up and out for review pretty soon. And yet again, thank you to Mr. Lawhon (Toby) for taking the time to speak with Amii Foxfire about working on SIS's logo for us. I will be getting in touch with her soon to send off our rough drafts so she can work her magic. I really cannot wait to see what she does with it all! Anyone else excited too? So, yesterday (September 21st 2010) our website got a makeover. Well, I just got really sick of looking at that gray lump of mess called a website. So, I sat at the computer, and I mulled over thousands of layout ideas in my head, then looked around for other layouts to help me with my “mind's eye” of what I saw for us. Then I remembered I had some nice elements in my graphics program that I'd been collecting and saving up for something that, one day, might just click

Volume 1 – No. 02

together into a neat little project. Finally!! I found something to do with all the shhhtuff... erm... yeah... sitting in my folders forever. So, I sat for several hours, playing around with some effects, making walls, papers, etc... until finally I got the result of our new website. The watch will eventually be replace by the new logo, when we get it sent to us. I am truly excited about that last touch coming to fruition. But in the mean time, at least the website LOOKS like we're actually doing something around this place. Haha... Hope everyone else is slightly impressed. No, it's no work of art, but it's better than the gray and white layout we had before. As Captain says, “No more start up feel to it.” Got something you want to add to the newsletter? Whacha' waiting for? Send it on over to me! If you ever have ideas, suggestions, or comments to provide to me, please feel free to contact me at If you spot a printing error, please send any corrections that need to be made to the above email as well. Next Submission Deadline: 10/18/10 StaticNomad

MINUTES from August 26th & September 11th: Minutes for August 26, 2010 - Crystal's in Irving, Texas. Meeting called to order at 8:24pm by Captain Quinlin Hopkins. 34 at last count in attendance, plus visitors. Welcome visitors. Topics Discussed: Austin convention for this upcoming weekend. Captain mentioned the raffle we've started up for the meeting, all money donated will go into a fund for settling paperwork for establishing non-profit organization. He also mentioned the forum and website, which is under construction, but has plenty of information on all topics we've been discussing. Also discussed the logo artwork for our society. Toby mentioned that FoxFires, Amy, may be willing to work on our logo for our society, possibly free of charge. Original design idea by Larry, so thanks to Larry for his time in this. We also discussed the newsletter for our society. We put out our first issue this month. We will have better newsletters in the future, but for now - we have something! Other topics discussed - The convention we're working on in the future: The subject was brought up by Toby Lawhon for filling in new members and visitors. We have filed paper work for getting grants for next year's goal of a convention. It's not likely we will receive those funds, but we at least have an idea of what to do in the future from this experience. A visitor mentioned Hyatt Reunion Tower - there is a anime convention taking place in two weeks at that location. Fencon on September 18th 2010, there is a formal tea being held. Discussed project to make a reactor steampunk style like Farnsworth. (Minutes continued on page 2) Page 1

(Minutes continued from page 1) Would like to have individuals working together to make this happen, just because we can. Discussion on this topic was held by various members on how to go about making this project a reality. Captain also brought up the train trip for cooler weather that we're looking at doing. Those planning to attend this event need to be sure that the tickets they buy for the train are for the vintage steam train, and not for the diesel train. So be careful. We're planning to ride the vintage steam train. Nocturn spoke presenting themselves, and has been meeting at Crystals for the pass 15 years. Most members of that group are hard core sci-fi, not much for steampunk, but some are. They've created their own group for airship, and costumes. Toby left a post on the forums about this topic. Lisa introduced herself as she just moved here from Philladelphia. She also works at the Dallas Zoo. Some other members also took a bit of time to introduce themselves. Welcome to them all. Minutes for September 11, 2010 - Crystal's in Irving, Texas. Meeting called to order by Captain Q. Hopkin's at 3:37pm. Our size for this meeting has exceeded 50 members in attendance. Topics Discussed: The club's purpose - People gathering together as a group, coming together to discuss like-minded topics based around steampunk. Educating the public, those curious on the topic. Getting classes together, skills are out there, but need those willing to teach, to contact us so we can get together an actual class for our society. Locations: Looking for one on the Ft Worth side, will hunt on 9-12-10, if we do not find one before the next meeting, we will meet at The Generator in Garland, on September 23rd at 7:30pm. Looking for a permanent building for our larger gatherings which continue to grow with each meeting. Someone will be speaking on this topic at the end of the meeting. Also looking into a PA system, and looking for our building to be very accommodating to us. Hopefully a landlord out there would prefer to have us in the building rather than to have it vacant and subject to vandals. North Fort Worth location named Oscar's was suggested located in Haltom City off of 377. It is family owned, individual establishment. We will investigate this location. (Update: Location was visited, and spoke with the owner "Oscar". He showed us the pricing, the contract, and the rooms. This is a very accommodating location as far as large attendance goes, but cost is a concern at this early in the society's age. We will hold this location as a strong possibility for special meetings in the future.) Scheduled trip, Grapevine, Texas on the Tarantula Steamtrain. Hour and a half trip on the train each way with about a 2 hour layover in downtown Fort Worth. Looks like for October. Fundraising: We're in the beginning stages of creating a promotional video to explain what we're about. Hoping to launch by the New Year. Looking for someone with a studio to help out. Also looking for anyone with items to offer off for raffle. The first October meeting will be the Cherie Priest book "Dreadnought". We spoke

about the newsletter, offering advertising free to all Steampunk related content. Anything not Steampunk related will cost $5 per ad. Also spoke about the forum, the two new sections for our forum "Airships", and "Dieselpunk" (where Larry is the moderator of Dieselpunk.) SPEAKERS: Audelia Flint spoke to introduce her new crew for her Airship, La Marianne. Congratulations to her, and her crew! Her, Larry, and Tina Amyett are the current crew members of La Marianne. She had an impressive flag to represent her airship with her, as well as a pamphlet to explain more about their airship and what they are all about. Guy Brownlee spoke about someone named Amy wanting to host us at a Flag store (comic store, too small for a saturday, but possibly for a smaller Thursday meeting). City Tavern on Main in Dallas wants to host us as well and is family friendly. Guy is going to look into it more for us. Steve Liptag brought us news from Dragoncon. He mentioned that they had to bring a whole new hotel into the mix because of the steampunk movement. They had a fashion show, science, costuming, props, and a time travelers ball which had bands playing and costumes everywhere. He brought a video to show how the event went. They embrace dieselpunk as well. He mentioned he also has some photos available. They broke the record for the most costumed steampunk wearer's (over 500 in attendance) there. WOW!! Ann - is a member of the Airship Nocturn. She is selling shoes in size 7 1/2 to size 8. See her after the meeting if interested. Johnathan Lester spoke to offer vacuum tubes that he got from Ebay. See him after the meeting if interested. Silver Thorne spoke about Fencon being held next Saturday, September 17th. They are having ballroom dancing, tea, and classes she is going to be instructing. Per Toby of the Marquis de Vaudville, the SIS logo is being done by Amii Foxfire. She agreed to do our logo free of charge for our society. FANTASTIC! Thanks goes out to Toby for communicating this and getting it set up for our society. Meeting was adjourned at 4:03pm. Drawings for raffles took place afterwards. Winners were: 1st winner, Camera Obscura, who took the “Steampunk” book edited by Ann and Jeff VanderMeer. 2nd winner was Craig who took the “Changelings” book. 3rd winner was Ramone who took the lamp that was generously donated by Dr. Clu. Thanks goes out to Dr. Clu for that offer. Closing Note: We hear there are airships designs currently percolating through Ramone's head, but we ran into some others topics there and decided to leave poste haste ;) *Editor's Note: No, you are not imagining things. I am missing minutes from August 14th 2010. I have no darn clue where I hide them at. Leave it to me to hide stuff from myself. If I ever find them, I will come back to a later edition and add those in there. Just for records purposes, if anything.

Page 2

THE DIFFERENCE ENGINE #2 By Jack & Beverly Wilgus (Prof. & Mrs Camera Obscura)

reconstruction will be on display at the Computer History Museum until the end of 2010 when it will be moved to the private collection of Nathan Myhrvold. See it if you can!

We all came to Steampunk by very personal paths. For us the portal of entry was William Gibson and Bruce Sterling's 1990 novel, The Difference Engine. We were both fans of science fiction since childhood and were early adapters of the personal computer. This book spoke to many of our interests. Years To learn more about the Difference Engine #2 later we read a check out these websites: review of the book that included the term "Steampunk" and we were hooked. We continued our interest in Babbage and his Photographs by Jack Wilgus inventions and in June, 2008 while planning a trip to California we read that a second fully functioning FUTURE MEETINGS & EVENTS difference engine had been built in England from On October 9th at 3:30pm, we will hold a meeting Babbage's design. The first was finished in 1991 for at Excuses Extreme Cafe in Dallas, Texas. This is London's Science Museum and the new one was destined for the private collection of Nathan Myhrvold, former located at 3025 Main Street in Dallas, Texas. Our meeting will be there near the dance floor, where Microsoft VP. there are tables, chairs, and even some comfy couches. Visitors are welcomed. Food is available there and an online menu can be found at: This is a family friendly establishment, and individually owned. We will have a raffle or two, and they should be quite good. So we hope to see you there!

This full-size operating model of the Difference Engine, never built in Babbage's lifetime, was on display at the Computer Museum in Mountain View, California. Of course we had to add a side trip to the museum to our California itinerary. It is hard to describe the thrill of the experience. Based on the original drawings that Babbage made more than 150 years ago it consists of 8,000 parts, weighs five tons, and measures 11 feet long. This version is crank driven although Babbage envisioned a steam driven model. Watching the beautiful brass gears operate as it flawlessly made complex mathematical computations gave us the feeling that we were seeing a past that might have been. How would the world have changed if Babbage had been able to build his engine? This second

October is just about upon us, and that means the cooler weather is coming to us as well. As you've probably already heard, and/or read, before – We have plans to take a wonderful train ride out of Grapevine on the Tarantula. The ride lasts approximately and hour and a half each way. The cars, to our knowledge, are not air conditioned, thus the reason to wait for cooler weather. If you'd like to participate and would like us to purchase your ticket for you with our group discount, please contact us at and we'll be happy to work with you. Receipts will, of course, be provided. Other events are posted on our forum, which can be found by going to and clicking on “FORUM” on the menu. Sometimes events are posted by other members, and groups will form to attend said events. Society established and organized events will be always posted here in the newsletter.

(Future Meetings & Events Continued on Page 4....)

Page 3

(Future Meetings & Events continued from Page 3....)


A small calendar of future dates is provided below. Please NOTE that dates & times are subject to change, especially if they arec lose to, or on, a holiday.

Welcome to these folks who joined up with the Steampunk Illumination Society at the September 11th meeting:

2010 THURSDAY - September 23rd @ 7:30pm SATURDAY - October 9th @ 3:30pm THURSDAY - October 21st @ 7:30pm SATURDAY - November 6th @ 3:30pm THURSDAY - November 18th @ 7:30pm SATURDAY - December 4th @ 3:30pm THURSDAY - December 16th @ 7:30pm

We are so glad to have you join us on this illuminating path to a wondrous society. We hope you enjoy being a member as much as we enjoy having you with us. Thank you for choosing to walk with us!

POETRY (By Toby Lawhon)

2011 SATURDAY - January 1st @ 3:30pm THURSDAY - January 13th @ 7:30pm SATURDAY - January 29th @ 3:30pm THURSDAY - February 10th @ 7:30pm SATURDAY - February 26th @ 3:30pm THURSDAY - March 10th @ 7:30pm SATURDAY - March 26th @ 3:30pm THURSDAY - April 7th @ 7:30pm SATURDAY - April 23rd @ 3:30pm THURSDAY - May 5th @ 7:30pm SATURDAY - May 21st @ 3:30pm THURSDAY - June 2nd @ 7:30pm SATURDAY - June 18th @ 3:30pm THURSDAY - June 30th @ 7:30pm SATURDAY - July 16th @ 3:30pm (1 YR ANNIVERSARY) THURSDAY - July 28th @ 7:30pm SATURDAY - August 13th @ 3:30pm THURSDAY - August 25th @ 7:30pm SATURDAY - September 10th @ 3:30pm THURSDAY - September 22nd @ 7:30pm SATURDAY - October 8th @ 3:30pm THURSDAY - October 20th @ 7:30pm SATURDAY - November 5th @ 3:30pm THURSDAY - November 17th @ 7:30pm SATURDAY - December 3rd @ 3:30pm THURSDAY - December 22nd @ 7:30pm * Editor's Note: I'd made a mistake (or twenty) on the last print. All 3:00pm time slots should have been 3:30pm time slots. Changes have been made to this schedule to reflect properly. My apologies for the confusion, if any was caused.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO.... September Birthdays : Becky Demonja Johnathan Lester Tina Amyett

1st 4th 24th

October Birthdays : Autumn Moran Ramone Leon Del Mar

Emilee & Mark McCurley (& their little girl), Eric Chaney, Jack & Beverly Wilgus, Rob Scott, Matt Doherty, Scott Ward, Brian Elliott, & Michael Brown.

24th 30th

Have a birthday that's coming up or passed by? Don't see it here? Well, tell me when it is & I'll announce it!

~Sweet is the veiled symphony, this dying antiquity, this curio, this oddity, this expression of old In times of never Dance precious Mesmer Lay bare what splendor the singularity doth hold~

OUR FRIENDS Here are a few great websites to check out on the net: Brass Goggles:

Trial By Steam:


Marquis of Vaudeville: Dr. Charles Wellington Scott – Anthro-Philosophyology:

Bright Bytes Studio: http// Art of Steampunk: Want your steampunk related site here? Contact the editor!

FUNNY STUFF A steampunk was walking down the sidewalk one day when his friend, a dieselpunk, came up on an incredible shiny new diesel hovercraft bike. The steampunk was stunned by his friend's sweet ride and asked, "WOW! Where did you get such a nice hovercraft?" The dieselpunk replied, "Well, yesterday I was walking home, minding my own business, when a beautiful woman came up to me on this hovercraft. She got off the hovercraft, took off all her clothes and said, 'Take what you want!'" The steampunk nodded approvingly, "Good choice. The clothes probably wouldn't have fit." Page 4

FUNNY STUFF (continued from page 4....) A seaman meets a steampunk pirate in a bar, and talk turns to their adventures on the world, more specifically, to the steampunk's adventures on the airship. The seaman notes that the steampunk has a peg-leg, a hook, and an eye patch. The seaman asks, "So, how did you end up with the peg-leg?" The steampunk replies, "We were in a storm at the sky, and I was swept overboard, but managed to grab myself. Just as my men were pulling me out, the wind caught on and my leg accidentally went to one of the turbine blades, cutting it in the most painful manner." "Wow!" said the seaman. "What about your hook"? "Well", replied the steampunk, "We were boarding an enemy airship and were battling the other pirates with rayguns. One of the enemy's rayguns ray hit my hand and crossed it from one side to the other. It had to be amputated." "Incredible!" remarked the seaman. "How did you get the eye patch"? "A seagull dropping fell into my eye," replied the steampunk. "You lost your eye to a seagull dropping?," the sailor asked incredulously. "Well," said the steampunk, "it was my first day with my hook"

Cheese! Ramone & his lamp prize.

MEMORABLE MOMENTS (Photos by StaticNomad & Captain Q. Hopkins)

August 26th Meeting Photo.

September 11th Meeting Photo. STEAMPUNK RE-INVENTIONS An RFID Globe That Controls a Google Earth Tablet Article by Kyle VanHemert Source:

Google Earth's an incredible (and incredibly useful) piece of software, but there's still something to be said for the good old, threedimensional globe. This one not only celebrates the brass-detailed spheres of yore but controls Google Earth for good measure. (Continued on Page 6....) Page 5

STEAMPUNK RE-INVENTIONS (continued from page 5....)

FAMOUS QUOTES “Anything one man can imagine, other men can make real” - Jules Verne "It is all done by electricity, my dear Arronax, by electricity!" -Capt. Nemo

John Knight is the tinkerer behind the project, which he calls the Electromagnetic Geospacial Globe and Remote View with Obligatory Goggles, using RFID tags and Touchatag reader to control Google Earth. Knight is presenting the set at today's Maker Faire Detroit, but you can see a video of it in action here. (view online to click links)

SOCIETY INFORMATION OFFICERS & COMMITTEE POSITIONS Founder: Captain Quinlin Hopkins Vice President: NOT YET ELECTED Secretary: NOT YET ELECTED Acting Treasurer: StaticNomad Editor: StaticNomad Website Manager: StaticNomad *Position names are likely to change late down the line. Other positions could be created & voted on at a later date as well. This is just to show, yeah, someone is actually coordinating all of this!

WANT TO CONTACT US? Our Website: Mailing Address: P.O. Box 202664; Arlington, Tx 76006 Our Email: Page 6

Cogs N' Gears (Sept/2010)  
Cogs N' Gears (Sept/2010)  

Cogs N' Gears is a newsletter that is published by Steampunk Illumination Society.