This is a guest post by @ponywithhiccups, a cool gal who sometimes makes epic nerdy cakes.
It was a simple deal: Swizec would make a cake for me and I would make a cake for him. After many many not so subtle hints I got exactly what I wanted.
He wanted this in a cake form -->
Ignoring the gears I was eager to make the complicated cake, how hard could it be?
I've heard of möbius architecture so it wasn't like I was the first person making a 3D mobius strip able to stand on its own. A quick google search and there it was: a nice picture of a 3D model. Yay, I could actually do this!
It looked simple enough at first, just cut a hole in cake dough, then cut it in half and bend it a little - voila done! But then I started thinking and soon realised you can't just bend a cake. The cake dough is not a bendy material; it is actually very brittle and sensitive and not cooperative at all! And what would happen tho the fill if the layers were vertical and not horizontal and how the heck do you cut a cake like that? Nope, the layers have to be horizontal. And there was my first big problem - the cake layers were not simple shapes anymore.
Just looking at the pretty picture of möbius arhitecture didn't tell me how to cut. I had to figure that bit out on my own. Since I'm too lazy to do things by hand I did it on a computer.
After some trial and error and a lot of clumsy modeling things started making sense. It turns out a 3D möbius structure is just two möbius strips intertwined or a square making half a rotation along a circular path.
All I needed to do now was to cut the virtual cake in layers.
Now that I knew what the layers would look like all I could think was "I wish I could 3d print cake!"
I was making a yummy chocolate cake with sour cherries in the middle! So even if it turned out horribly deformed it would still be tasty, just look at the ingredients!
It all started pretty normal: heating, mixing, cooling, etc. and then came the time to cut the bisquit, the moment I did not look forward to. With the help of a ruler, a compass and colorful pencils I soon had a cutting template.
And there I was: a sharp knife in my right and a paper template in my left, ready to make a mess.
And it got messy fast, the bisquit is very crumbly. Not my favourite material at all!
It was during the process of cutting the first layer when I had the what-the-hell-am-i-even-doing moment. The first layer looked like a giant crooked eye and it almost fell apart when i moved it. And it wasn't getting any better.
The chocolate fill was almost liquid, the cherries decided it was time to run away, the cake did not look like a mobius cake at all! I opened the windows to make the whole kitchen a giant cooler and hoped for the best.
Then I just kept adding a metric fuckton of chocolate.
And i did it!
It was not pretty, it was not elegant, not even slightly symetric, but it was a möbius cake!
And I still had a lot of leftover material, so I made a tiny surprise gear cake ;)
Note from Swizec: It was fucking delicious!
I write articles with real insight into the career and skills of a modern software engineer. "Raw and honest from the heart!" as one reader described them. Fueled by lessons learned over 20 years of building production code for side-projects, small businesses, and hyper growth startups. Both successful and not.
Subscribe below 👇
Join Swizec's Newsletter and get insightful emails 💌 on mindsets, tactics, and technical skills for your career. Real lessons from building production software. No bullshit.
"Man, love your simple writing! Yours is the only newsletter I open and only blog that I give a fuck to read & scroll till the end. And wow always take away lessons with me. Inspiring! And very relatable. 👌"
Senior Mindset Book
Get promoted, earn a bigger salary, work for top companiesLearn more
Have a burning question that you think I can answer? Hit me up on twitter and I'll do my best.
Who am I and who do I help? I'm Swizec Teller and I turn coders into engineers with "Raw and honest from the heart!" writing. No bullshit. Real insights into the career and skills of a modern software engineer.
Want to become a true senior engineer? Take ownership, have autonomy, and be a force multiplier on your team. The Senior Engineer Mindset ebook can help 👉 swizec.com/senior-mindset. These are the shifts in mindset that unlocked my career.
Curious about Serverless and the modern backend? Check out Serverless Handbook, for frontend engineers 👉 ServerlessHandbook.dev
Want to Stop copy pasting D3 examples and create data visualizations of your own? Learn how to build scalable dataviz React components your whole team can understand with React for Data Visualization
Did someone amazing share this letter with you? Wonderful! You can sign up for my weekly letters for software engineers on their path to greatness, here: swizec.com/blog
By the way, just in case no one has told you it yet today: I love and appreciate you for who you are ❤️