IBM Makes Atomic-Size Stop-Motion Short

IBM Research entered the Guinness Book of World Records with the tiniest stop-motion movie ever made (45 nanometers x 25 nanometers) about an atomic boy having fun playing with a single atom.

In a breakthrough requiring thousands of precisely placed atoms as stand-ins for actors, props, and scenes, A Boy and His Atom is comprised of almost 250 stop-motion frames that were combined into an animated film. To help bring this world of atoms to life, the scientists used a unique two-ton microscope that operates at -268 degrees Celsius.

In addition, the IBM team used these same tools and techniques to make custom Star Trek art (including the logo, the Enterprise, and Vulcan salute). These images will launch exclusively on the Star Trek Into Darkness mobile app.

Granted the dancing and jumping and interaction is crude, but IBM believes this experimental short will likely alter the future of computing and data storage. In fact, IBM recently announced atomic-scale memory technology that can store a bit of data with only 12 atoms and could one day store every movie ever made in a device the size of a fingernail.

Will IBM try to qualify A Boy and His Atom for a best animated short Oscar?

Posted on by Bill Desowitz in Animation, Movies, Shorts, stop-motion, Tech

2 Responses to IBM Makes Atomic-Size Stop-Motion Short

  1. Judy Cosgrove

    Can IBM qualify for an Oscar if the short is aired on Youtube?

  2. Bill Desowitz

    Probably not.

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