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a never ending rube goldberg
April 2, 2012 7:15 PM   Subscribe

Watch the world's most extraordinary 'kinetic sculpture' "From a duck to a skeleton to a robot dinosaur: scientists created this fabulous kinetic sculpture, called On the Move, to demonstrate to children the concept of energy transfer. "
posted by dhruva (21 comments total) 16 users marked this as a favorite

 
♫ Pi-ta-go-ra su-i-chi! ♫
posted by darksasami at 7:33 PM on April 2, 2012 [6 favorites]


Ooh, I like this. It's so much more dangerous than the usual kinetic chain. The lathe! The bandsaw! The jacob's ladder! The barking puppies! The tank! Oooohhh noooo the taaaaank!!!

Oh, and of course Tim Hunkin was involved. The man can do no wrong.
posted by phooky at 7:46 PM on April 2, 2012 [1 favorite]


Boo camera cuts. I love the effort and all, but either it works in one take, or it doesn't work.
posted by Popular Ethics at 7:51 PM on April 2, 2012 [2 favorites]


This has nothing to do with energy transfer so much as it, like all Rube Goldberg contraptions, is about pushing systems with a lot of potential energy past an activation threshold. It may have justified an engineer's pet project to call it educational, but if the purported lesson truly is energy transfer, it's doing a bit of a disservice to its ostensible audience.
posted by clarknova at 7:53 PM on April 2, 2012 [5 favorites]


I am disappoint. I was really hoping for something more along the lines of this
posted by rebent at 7:55 PM on April 2, 2012 [3 favorites]


the world's most extraordinary 'kinetic sculpture'

You mean these?
posted by lumensimus at 7:56 PM on April 2, 2012 [3 favorites]


Jinx!
posted by lumensimus at 7:56 PM on April 2, 2012


No soft toys were injured in the making of this film.

Lies. That poodle was clearly crushed by the tank.
posted by Garm at 7:59 PM on April 2, 2012 [2 favorites]


If Honda had had a bit of money they could have done this!
posted by jet_silver at 8:09 PM on April 2, 2012


My favorite part was when the duck's ass was on fire and it farted all the way across the pond.
posted by not_on_display at 8:45 PM on April 2, 2012 [2 favorites]


From 3:15-3:40, what IS that?
I mean, it looks like the shit really hits the fan, right?
posted by hanoixan at 8:56 PM on April 2, 2012 [4 favorites]


In watching this, I realized that if there were a weekly half hour tv show featuring a different, half hour running Rube Goldberg device, I would be the happiest man in the universe.
posted by Cat Pie Hurts at 8:59 PM on April 2, 2012 [3 favorites]


Individual elements of this are lovely, but with the close up shots and rapid cuts, it is hard to tell what is actually going on. In my opinion, nobody has ever been able to come close to this one. Also I second the fact that this sort of a machine is a poor example of transference of energy, as the energy from step 1 (light/heat) is not actually transferred into step 2 (gravity/kinetic energy) and so on, rather it is simply used to trigger the next release of stored potential energy as clarknova pointed out. These shortcomings aside, I love a good Rube Goldberg machine, so thanks for posting!
posted by TheCoug at 9:43 PM on April 2, 2012 [2 favorites]


From 3:15-3:40, what IS that?

I kept repeating to myself "It's a sausage, right? It's got to be a sausage. There's nothing else that could possibly be other than a sausage. Definitely a sausage."
posted by benito.strauss at 9:46 PM on April 2, 2012


I think "chain reaction" is the proper term for this sort of thing, rather than transfer of energy. /hairsplitting
posted by TheCoug at 9:52 PM on April 2, 2012


Also involved: Paul Spooner, one of my favorite automata makers.
posted by hades at 9:53 PM on April 2, 2012


Serendipity or perhaps Umwelt has brought me to this thread so I can share this video
posted by Sailormom at 10:17 PM on April 2, 2012


Cog pulled Rube Goldberg off very well.
posted by archagon at 11:29 PM on April 2, 2012


Well, all I can say is this.

Oh, and the electronic puppies were cheating...
posted by Samizdata at 11:57 PM on April 2, 2012


Yeah, I would have loved this if they'd just called it a Rube Goldberg device. But the breathless ("world's most extraordinary") overselling based on misinformation ("concept of energy transfer") ruins it.
posted by DU at 4:42 AM on April 3, 2012


I managed to resist singing Ok Go for a full three minutes.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 8:33 AM on April 3, 2012 [1 favorite]


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