Wednesday, 30 December 2015

Manipulating The Atom (A Short Animation)

Atomic animation is just the start...

Manipulating The Atom.
Copyright: University of West Humbershire.
(Used with kind permission.)
This week at Tomorrow's Technology Today we take a look at rather an unusual topic as we feature a short animation featuring stick figures.  It's a stop-motion animation created by the Department of Atomic Physics at the University of West Humbershire, but what makes the video ground-breaking is that the animated images were created by manipulating individual atoms to create very basic stick figure sketches.

As you can see when you watch the video below, it's not going to win any awards for amimation*, but the project was more about demonstrating what can be done at a sub-molecular level, rather than producing a piece of entertainment.

* Ironically, since this article was written the video has actually won an award in the 'Groundbreaking Animation Techniques' category at the annual Xenial Animation Awards.  The category recognises creative animation techniques, however, rather than the quality of the animation itself, and the point our staff writer was trying to make is that the video is obviously intended more as a scientific demonstration, rather than as a piece of entertainment.

The video is entitled 'Manipulating The Atom (A Short Animation)' and it features a character named Adam trying to impress the ladies on the dance floor with his dance moves...

Wednesday, 1 April 2015

Five Rock Formations From The Solar System Which Resemble Objects On Earth

Intriguing photos from around the solar system...

With various space exploratory bodies from different nations around the world recently coming together to complete the 'Correlation Of Exploratory Space Missions Project', hundreds of fascinating photos from solar system probes have recently been released into the public domain.  Here at Tomorrow's Technology Today we've gone through the files and picked out a selection of images which were of particular note for their curious resemblance to creatures and objects more typically observed on Earth.

Acknowledgement: Our thanks go to guest contributor Professor Martin Feldman for his words of explanation as to how these various rock formations were most likely formed. 

1) The Giant Turtle Of Ganymede

The Giant Turtle Of Ganymede,
easily explained by the 'closed volcano' phenomenon.
This first curious image was taken by the Navigator-4 Probe during its 2009 flyby mission of Ganymede, the largest moon of Jupiter and indeed the largest moon in the solar system.  The rock formation in the photo was discovered near to the magnetic equator of Ganymede and remarkably appears to resemble a giant turtle.

To give you an idea of the scale of the photo, the peak of the 'shell' measures approximately 800 metres in height which to give you a sense of scale is roughly the same height as Ayre's Rock/Uluru in Australia.

Explanation:  Professor Martin Feldman explains, "This is perhaps one of the simplest images to explain and was undoubtedly caused by what astro-geologists refer to as a 'closed volcano'.  The phenomenon is actually quite common throughout the solar system and refers to an eruption of magma that forces its way to the surface only to find its escape route blocked by a rock formation such as the 'shell' in the photo.  When the magma meets the obstruction it is then forced out of the base of the shell at various weak points, and given that the temperatures as far out in the solar system as Jupiter are vastly cooler than here on Earth, the magma subsequently cools very rapidly, solidifying into rock 'appendages' at the base of the shell.

Of course in most cases you rarely end up with such a distinctive looking turtle shaped rock formation, but nevertheless the process of a closed volcano has been observed elsewhere in the solar system on previous occasions."

Thursday, 29 January 2015

The Electronic Chip Which Could Put An End To Diving Football Cheats

Could the patented Natural Motion Response Recognition System (NMRRS™) finally clean up the game of football?

Diving, or simulation if you wish to be use the more popular term of the moment, seems to be unfortunately becoming a more and more integral part of the modern game with every passing season.  No longer can we claim it to be a disease restricted to ‘those cheating foreigners’.  It seems that FIFA, UEFA and football fans alike have reached the point of simply accepting that cheating will always be an unfortunate part of the modern game which we will never be able to entirely eradicate.

Simulation could soon become a thing of the past,
thanks to the patented NMRRS™.
However, that might all be about to change if Professor Ray Oxley and his team of kinetics experts prove successful in their efforts to have their latest technological development accepted into the game.  Ray, who heads the Ergonomics And Kinetics Research Department at the Melbourne University Of Sports Science, has been working on the development of a simple electronic chip insert incorporating motion sensor technology.