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A Software Engineer Made a Star Map with an Old Knitting Machine

Knitting has been around for virtually as long as mankind’s ability to create clothing, and as humanity has developed new technologies, the ability for machines to knit things has also become better. Australian software engineer Sarah Spencer has a knitting machine from the ’80s, and for years now, she’s had fun with hacking it, pushing it to its limits to see what it’s capable of. Recently, she was able to achieve something pretty special: with a modified machine, she was able to knit a huge tapestry of an accurate stellar map (via BoingBoing).

I’m not personality familiar with the technicalities of knitting, but Space.com assures that the methods she used to create this masterpiece — “knitting with bird’s-eye backing using one knit per pixel in three colors” — are impressive, and based on the output, I’m inclined to believe that. What’s also impressive is its accuracy: It features all 88 constellations that can be seen from Earth; on and when the tapestry went on display at EMF Camp on August, the planets in the sky were aligned with their orientation as seen in the knitting.

What’s the most impressive knitting project you’ve ever seen? Let us know if it’s this or something else down in the comments!

Featured image: Michael Coghlan/Flickr

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