Nov 27, 2013

MIT's "ZeroN" suspends gravity and disbelief

Magnets. You know the jokes, you know how they work. Jinha Lee and Rehmi Post of MIT certainly do, and they're using that knowledge to produce "ZeroN", a physical and digital interaction element that floats and moves in space by computer-controlled magnetic levitation.
To realize such interactions, we developed a magnetic control system that can levitate and actuate a permanent magnet in a pre- defined 3D volume [...] combined with an optical tracking and display system that projects images on the levitating object. Conventional levitation only enables levitating an object at one point. In ZeroN Project, users can move a levitated object to anywhere in a predefined 3D space and leave it there without dropping it since the system constantly readjusts both magnetically and mechanically. It is about turning 3D space into levitating space.

Of course there's the argument of semantic scruples as to whether this technology actually counts as "anti-gravity" when it's technically just utilizing manipulated fields of electromagnetism. Electromagnetism, Anti-Gravity. To-ma-to, To-mah-to, To-yo-ta. What matter is that it's awesome. Now the question of practical applications...

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