Category Archives: conservation

Smithsonian Online

Recently Mike Austin and Tim Shields of Hardshell Labs, Inc. were interviewed for an article by Smithsonian Online’s Samantha Schipani. She was particularly interested in our ideas for conservation games involving internet players. Of course, the emphasis was on desert tortoises but our view is that the progress we are making toward the goal of… Continue reading »

Hardshell Labs’ Techno-tortoise™ Episode 2: The Tool

The story of this episode is the rapid advance of technology in the service of conservation. In a short space of time the Techno-tortoise™ went from an intriguing idea through an initial “low resolution” version printed on a low end machine at Haines High in Alaska to a state of the art, highly realistic model… Continue reading »

Hardshell Labs’ Techno-tortoise™ Episode 1: The Problem

Hardshell Labs’ Techno-tortoise™  Episode 1: The Problem

Here is the first in a four part series of short videos about the Techno-tortoise™, Hardshell’s 3D printed tortoise model. Tortoises are under assault from ever increasing numbers of ravens. The young reptiles are essentially defenseless for their first 5-7 years. For all that time they must somehow avoid being spotted (and eaten) by the… Continue reading »


As Hardshell’s ex oficio media wrangler, I just had the simple thought that I could get a search results kind’a feeling for the current reach of Hardshell’s Guardian Angel Rover initiative. Using one of the well-known search engines, I queried the string, “guardian angel rover hardshell,” and got 7,200 results. Pretty good for startup which is… Continue reading »

Tower Time

Tower Time

September is pistachio harvesting time in Inyokern. Not coincidentally it is also the time when ravens do their worst damage to the crop. They descend by the hundreds, knock nuts from the trees and drop to ground to eat their fill. Pistachios are a major cash crop and one whose growers have a keen interest… Continue reading »

I Am The Great and Powerful Oz (sort of)

I Am The Great and Powerful Oz (sort of)

Tawanda Scott-Sambou wanted to see lots of ravens. She is a CNN producer working on a story about Hardshell and after seeing the Guardian Angel Rover in action with captive tortoises she asked to see the dark side of the tortoise conservation equation, to understand what all the fuss is about. So I took her… Continue reading »