Best of the Bay 2011: BEST PROTOTYPES (PRIMATE OR OTHERWISE)

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The website of the Foam Monkeys concept modeling studio has an "awards" section that admits, "While we can't honestly recall Foam Monkeys ever actually being mentioned for an award, the company has certainly been a part of many award-winning product development teams." But we're giving the company itself a real, bona fide Best of the Bay to boast about. Why? Because! Here you can not only construct a polyurethane primate, but also all sorts of useful stuff — like prototypes for everything from MacBooks to microchips. Sure, the company is geared toward creating serious conceptual models for industrial design and product development, but that doesn't make the idea of an accessible foam-based 3-D modeling studio any less awesome.

32 Shotwell, SF. (415) 552-5577, www.foammonkeys.com