Visit the 61st Dimension

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If you like to design and build models of molecules, structures, and beyond, this system is for you. Zometool is a shadow of a 61 dimensional building toy.

If you like to design and build models of molecules, structures, and beyond, this system is for you. Zometool is a shadow of a 61 dimensional building toy. It is the fundamental building blocks of the world. You could build the universe with Zometool. Think of all the things a computer can do using only the numbers 0 and 1. Now imagine what you could do with the numbers 1, 2, 3, and 5.

 

I got a chance to interview Paul Hildebrant, the founder of Zometool, and learned that he was born and raised in Tennessee and moved to Boulder in 1969. Paul always said he wanted to be a builder, but when some people corrected him saying he wanted to work in architecture, he went along with it. But he wanted to build things. When he was 10 or 11, he designed paper houses that you could fold. but they weren't just houses. These houses had chimneys and garages and by the time he was 12, he was in the patent office, trying to get them patented.

 

He attended University of Colorado, Boulder. Although it took him until his last year to decide to major in economics, he spent a lot of time in the math, physics, and engineering parts of the college. Steve Baer discovered the geometry of the zometool system, although it was Paul who designed it.

 

The biggest sculpture he ever made was at the Bridges Conference for art and mathematics. It had almost 50,000 pieces.

 

I first encountered Zometool at an event I went to over the Fourth of July, where Paul was enlisting the help of several other kids to build a prototype of a sculpture he was to build in Portugal. I had a lot of fun with this system, and if it sounds interesting to you check out www.zometool.com!