– fordi tiden kræver et MODSPIL

05. Sep 2007

Bærbar af træ - smukkere og venligere computer til hverdagen?

Laptop af træ

Gabriele Zaverio er grundlægger af det italienske hackerlaboratorium Freaknet, men bruger også en del tid på at lave bærbare og stationære computere af træ.

Hvorfor? Fordi computere bliver en større og større del af vores hverdag, men typisk er lavet af uvenlige, kølige materialer, især plastic og metal. Hvorfor finde os i, at vores computer er af plastic eller blik, når vi ikke ville acceptere noget lignende for vores spisestuebord?

I beskrivelsen af sit værksted forklarer Zaverio også lidt om det arbejde, der går i fremstillingen af hver enkelt computer-beklædning:
A certain space is necessary to create a new piece of work, and here we are talking about my workbench. This is where I cut, inlay, sculpt, glue and varnish, in brief, where I create and refine my works of art.

A special mention should be made of the materials I use and the methods of working the materials.

The water I use for my work, for the washing and dilutions, is the spring water from the valley of the Anapo river, near the old railway station of Palazzolo Acreide, currently in ruin. It was inaugurated on the 19th of July 1915 after more than thirty years of heated discussion (the original project laid down by Luigi Mauceri dates back to 1884). It came into public service on the 26-7-1923 and reached its maximum value in 1933, when King Vittorio Emanuele III came by train to the Necropolis of Pantalica. During the last war the little railway was requisitioned by the allied troops to transport men and materials to the stronghold of Palazzolo which was subsequently conquered, with great losses, between the 1st and the 15th of August 1943. After more than 40 years of activity, it was disbanded at 9:30 on the 30-6-1956.
Værksted for computere af træ, Gabriele Zaverio

Wherever possible I prepare my own varnishes, boiling up and mixing various vegetabe resins, solvents (ethyl alcohol or essential oils), drying oils and natural colorants.

Among the natural varnishes I use, propolis figures, which also has anti-woodworm properties, as well as liquid amber or rubber lacquer, dissolved in wine spirits. Beeswax is used for the final polishes, as well as transparent nautical varnish to protect the finished work.

The finished wood is prepared for varnishing by dampening it and smoothing it again with sandpaper; this operation may need to be repeated many times, according to the quality of surface that one wishes to obtain.

Normally, the varnish is applied with a very soft brush, laying down each layer over the already-dry previous one. The first few layers are applied without colorants so as to avoid staining the wood itself.

desktop af træ The golden rule of a restorer is not to alter the aspect of a piece; thus the wear on a piece of wood often modifies its original character. The effects of time, oxidation of the surface, its use, sometimes over centuries by its original owners, often give it a very attractive surface pattern. Unfortunately, accidents and clumsy repairs, varnishing and heavy use can make a piece of wood difficult to use, both aesthetically and functionally.

However, all this makes up its personality. For this reason, I never make ostentatious changes, preferring to let the wood itself keep the traits that give it life and history: in this sense, the best restoration is that which is least visible. Thus wood that has a certain history, that has a story to tell, such as wood from ancient boxes, from old fishing vessels, or from beams of floorboards of ancient houses, give a unique character that is out of the ordinary.

When the work is finished, each piece is signed and numbered.
På en anden side forklares det, hvorfor man skulle ønske sig en computer af træ frem for en af plastic:
• Because every item is different from every other.
• Because it's made with a living material that comunicates warmth and unique tactile feelings, and that will acquire personality as it gets older rather than getting uglier.
• Because it represents a return to traditional methods and a way of working united with the most advanced technology.
• Because it's wonderful.
• Because it's light.
• Becaue there are extremely few examples in the world, and each of them is unique.
• Because it's an object made to last through time.
• Because man has used wood for his manufacture for thousands of years.
Jeg har på fornemmelsen, at en sådan træbeklædning ikke ville være den billigste del af selv en ganske kraftig, moderne computer - men man kunne vel bygge sine computere ind i den samme kasse, efterhånden som man udskifter dem, så kassen altid forbliver den samme, mens indmaden bliver udskiftet.

Tiltrækkende idé, omend måske ikke noget for min pengepung.