ZeroN - Levitated Interaction Element of Awesomeness
When I was younger, I used to push two magnets together until I found that point where a bubble of repulsion formed between them. With the weak magnets I had access to, I could always overpower the repulsive force and push them together, but I was amazed that there was some unseen magic acting upon two physical objects.
Like all of us, I later learned it was the forces of magnetism at work. The ZeroN project from Jinha Lee at MIT takes that to a whole new level.
By using computer-controlled magnetic field manipulations, a metal sphere is suspended in mid-air. Even more, it can be made to follow complex paths, “remembering” and repeating actions. If that somehow isn’t enough, just wait until he lights it up like an orbiting planet, and demonstrates Kepler’s Laws! Dude blew my mind!
It’s an experiment in challenging how we perceive natural patterns of motion, and whether computers, when combined with materials, can alter the way we interact with the world around us. Most of all, it’s AWESOME.
(↬ MIT Media Lab)