IBM makes an extraordinary little film by manipulating individual molecules
Hollywood loves to go big with movies. IBM scientists went small — very small. The company’s researchers produced a short, stop-motion film to showcase their efforts to design the next generation of data storage, and they did it by manipulating individual atoms to create images of a boy playing with a ball and bouncing on a trampoline. The clip, called A Boy and His Atom, has been certified by Guinness World Records as the “Smallest Stop-Motion Film” ever.
“A stream of very viscous syrup falls from a nozzle onto a moving belt. Initially, the belt is moving so fast that the thread is just pulled out straight. As the speed of the belt is reduced, the thread first bifurcates to a meandering state, and then to a “figure eight” state. Finally, the thread falls into a coiling motion similar to what it would do on a non-moving surface.”