You are currently browsing the tag archive for the ‘science’ tag.
(How to read this post: When a number (like these ➊) appears in the text, go to the corresponding number in the key at the foot of the post and follow the directions.)
As I spent a relaxing Saturday morning watching The Penguins of Madagascar and drinking a coffee ➊, I was confronted with a blast from the past ➋. Now, I have long complained that the biggest problem with The Penguins of Madagascar is that they’re shown on Nickelodeon, which means that you pretty much can’t avoid the Saturday morning advertising, which is broadcast directly from the pits of Hell ➌. Every time an ad for iCarly comes on I cower in fear in the corner of the sofa. But that was nothing compared the the truly frightening discovery that Smell-O-Vision has become a sinister reality! Remember Smell-O-Vision, also known as AromaRama, Scent-O-Vision or OdorAma? This shit used to be a joke, something generally accepted to be one of the worst ideas of all time. (Seriously, Time Magazine voted it one of the 100 Worst Ideas of All Time, which is actually impressive in a twisted way.)
So I guess it’s fitting that this terrible idea should be paired with an abysmal movie, such as Spy Kids 4. Which, the infernal broadcast informs me, is in ’4D AromaScope’. First problem: smell is not the 4th dimension. Smell is not a dimension at all. The 1950s have officially returned. Apparently they’ve improved the original idea a bit though. Instead of spraying the theater audience with noxious chemicals pumped in through the air system, you get a scratch and sniff card. So that’s an improvement over major flops like Scent of Mystery, but still not a winner, especially if Alonso Duralde’s experience is typical. “First things first: All eight scratch-and-sniff scents on the “Aroma-Scope” card I was handed at Spy Kids 4D: All the Time in the World smelled like Trix cereal and cardboard.”
Not a smash hit, apparently. But then, why would you want to smell along (what a bizarre phrase to find myself typing!) to a generic action movie like Spy Kids 4? Surely this technology would be better for a movie that involves interesting smells. Obvious choices would be movies about food. Mystic Pizza, Julie and Julia, Chocolat, Big Night. In an action movie I don’t quite see how it would add to the experience. I mean, take The Bourne Identity, a truly great action flick. When Jason’s body is pulled out of the Mediterranean by a fishing ship are you going to try to recreate the scent of a damp, dirty fishing boat on a rainy night?➍ God I hope not. Do you have any idea what that shit smells like? Let me tell you, it does not lend verisimilitude to the cinematic experience. What it adds is a god awful stench. And what about the car chase? Do they plan to pump in the smell of burning tires and an overheating Mini-Cooper engine backed up by the smell of Paris on garbage day?➎ I hope not.
I find the future confusing Puffin. Especially when it looks so much like the past.
➊ This was fair trade Chocolate roast from Fresh Market. Mix up a cup of dark roast coffee grounds with a 98% cacao Lindt bar and drink it at the dead of night in the bottom of an abandoned coal mine, and you might get close to how utterly inky black my coffee really is.
➋ The musty odor of the past can best be duplicated by finding a stuffy attic or garage and inhaling deeply. Multi dealer antique stores are also a good bet.
➌ Combine 3 parts brimstone and 2 parts sulphur in a cocktail shaker, add 3 frozen condemned souls and shake. Garnish with razor wire. Pour into a large syringe and inject the mixture up your nose. This will both accurately recreate the smell of Hell and also give you a rough idea of how I feel whenever I fail to mute an iCarly or Big Time Rush ad.
➍ 3 days old Galouise smoke, fish, foot fungus, bilge water and sweat. Usually so thick you could cut it with a knife.
➎ I would guess that it smells about like Scranton when there’s a tire fire. A smell I hope never to experience again. Route 81 right next to a burning scrap yard is not a good place to be stuck in traffic in a car without working AC.
Sometimes science can look an awful lot like magic.
“Happy” was the theme we were given by the organizers for this year’s F5 Re:Play Fest, held in April in NYC, to create this edition’s pieces, probably the hardest thing to convey in any artistic expression. After a good deal of introspection, and teaming up with awesome motion graphics artist Gerardo del Hierro, we decided that happy wasn’t happy for Physalia unless pliers, microchips and a bit of soldering were involved, and with this idea we resolved to create the happiest machine Physalia has built to date.
From Physalia Studios in Barcelona.
A good way to end the day.
While I would never want to lose my legs, the opportunity to swim around in this would be a pretty awesome silver lining.
This was developed by Weta, for Nadya Veesey, a double leg amputee.
Vessey was born with a condition that meant her legs would never develop properly, but began swimming after she had her first leg amputated at seven. Despite having her other leg amputated at 16, she swam competitively in high school and now swims as often as she can.
The unique articulated construction of the tail will allow Vessey to propel herself through the water with an undulating movement as if she was a mermaid.
Every aspect of the tail has been custom made to Vessey’s body using a blend of 3D modelling and milling technology, combined with Vi Vac vacforming, and a poly carbonate spine and tail fin. The skin of the tail has been made from a layer of neoprene and a lycra outer-layer digitally printed with a stunning ‘scale’ pattern, that was designed by one of our concept artists.
I just think this is wonderful