About Me

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I previously worked on Virtual Reality and other hardware at Valve.  I currently work at Google[x].

Prior to starting at Valve, I built computer peripherals such as keyboards, mice, and joysticks that were designed to be used inside MRI machines.  My company, Mag Design and Engineering, sold these devices directly to researchers at academic institutions who used them to publish scientific papers in peer-reviewed journals.

After work, I spend time on many different types of projects that usually involve circuit design, machining, material selection, and general fabrication/hacking.  My favorite place to be is my home workshop.

ben dot krasnow at gmail




Sunday, April 19, 2015

Distilling pure anhydrous ammonia

I have a few upcoming projects that require anhydrous ammonia. In this video, I show how to distill it from "ammonia water" similar to common glass cleaner.

Thursday, April 9, 2015

Magnetic Propulsion

This is a neat little demo that shows how permanent magnets can be used to create propulsion along a conductive copper track

Sunday, March 8, 2015

How Digital Light Processing (DLP) works

Digital Light Processing projectors use a chip that is covered with tiny mirrors that tilt back and forth. When the mirror is tilted one way, it reflects light out through the front of the projector, creating a bright pixel. When the mirror is tilted the other way, the pixel is dark. In this video, I explain how DLP works and show a macro-scale model.

Sunday, February 22, 2015

Review of National Instruments VirtualBench

The VirtualBench is an all-in-one piece of electronic test gear that combines an oscilloscope, logic analyzer, function generator, DMM, triple output programmable power supply, and an 8-channel digital I/O bus.  It can be controlled with a dedicated NI app, or programmatically controlled with LabView or C.  I show the device's usage and duggest which situations may benefit from using this device.

Monday, February 16, 2015

The science of wineglass tears (or wine legs)

The surface tension of water and the evaporation of ethanol produce an interesting effect in a wineglass known as "tears" or "legs".  The process is caused by the Marangoni effect, which explains how toy soap boats work among other interesting things.