Not so very long ago, artist Theo Jansen made Internet waves with his massive self-propelled strandbeests, kinetic sculptures built from plastic pipe, water bottles and other found materials. If you haven’t witnessed the awesome weirdness of the strandbeest, here’s a video of Jansen’s TED Talk.
Now, with the increasing availability* of 3D printing, your very own mini-beest can be replicated at home. (*I use the term “increasing availability” loosely here, as I still have yet to meet someone who has used a 3D printer. YMMV.)
Jansen considers the strandbeest a “new lifeform” and in the same line of thinking, has offered a method of strandbeest reproduction, “almost in the same way that nature multiplies.” Here is Jansen discussing the download of strandbeest “genetic code” and worldwide reproduction of his beloved pets in miniature, which he has dubbed the Animaris Geneticus Parvus.
And here is a completed (mature?) Animaris Geneticus Parvus running. (Disclaimer: this strandbeest is being pulled by a string. Also, it is vaguely creepy in a giant, running spider-alien sort of way.)
You can purchase the printable design for the seventh-generation Animaris Geneticus Parvus from shapeways for $105.88 (€ 71.36).