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Why hello there, future recurring nightmare.
March 8, 2014 4:05 PM   Subscribe

Space Replay is a floating black sphere that follows people around and plays back ambient sounds it has recorded. It was designed and built by Francesco Tacchini, Will Yates-Johnson and Julinka Ebhardt.
posted by Kattullus (37 comments total) 23 users marked this as a favorite

 
It doesn't really move on its own accord. As is explained in a comment to the video:
Since it's hovering it's very sensible to air currents and there was a bit of wind in South Ken tunnel I believe.

But mainly it's neutral buoyancy: the sphere body's density is equal to the air's density, so it's somehow 'immersed' into air and it follows whoever passes nearby because of the air movements generated by them.
posted by Kattullus at 4:07 PM on March 8


It's a bit too Rover-y, isn't it?
posted by joseph conrad is fully awesome at 4:14 PM on March 8 [10 favorites]


this is quite cool. I suppose you could fit a little motor to it to propel it. maybe add some electronic hack so it can stalk people's phone signals and follow them around or something.

but is there a way of doing all that without ruining the nice spherey shape?
posted by Bwithh at 4:16 PM on March 8


Re: Rover, The Prisoner is currently up on Crackle for free, at the moment. It has some stuff which Netflix presumably didn't even want the rights to, but also a few gems.
posted by Jon Mitchell at 4:29 PM on March 8


maybe we should stop inventing things
posted by The Whelk at 4:32 PM on March 8 [7 favorites]


I couldn't help thinking of "Trapped in the elevator with a song devil!"
posted by moonmilk at 4:36 PM on March 8 [1 favorite]


Ok, failing sanity checks here.
posted by Our Ship Of The Imagination! at 4:45 PM on March 8 [4 favorites]


someone help me I can't figure out how to shut it off and it keeps whispering 'goodbye' please
posted by theodolite at 4:49 PM on March 8 [1 favorite]




it seems to drain all color from its surroundings.
posted by philip-random at 5:01 PM on March 8 [3 favorites]


I want one!


i am pretty lonely
posted by Ray Walston, Luck Dragon at 5:04 PM on March 8 [3 favorites]


I don't want to scare you, but I'm an Ambient Sphere. Designed for ambience.
posted by Wolfdog at 5:09 PM on March 8 [1 favorite]


Heh, I was going to post this too. I find it oddly soothing. There's more of Tacchini's work at Cargo Collective.
posted by homunculus at 5:10 PM on March 8




I'm not sure which near-future dystopia we'll eventually decide on--Skynet, Brazil, Death Race 2000--but this thing goes well with all of them. It's like the Blue Jeans of near-future dystopias.

So when I'm hiding out in the burned shell of a car, hoping the whatevers don't find me, and I peek up over the edge of the smashed-out windshield to see if the coast is clear, and I see a sinister black orb floating there, I won't be scared. I'll just think, "Oh, yeah... I saw those things on Metafilter." And that ought to be comforting, but somehow it's more disturbing than anything else about the whole scenario.
posted by Sing Or Swim at 5:17 PM on March 8 [9 favorites]


Blackball. Avoid.
posted by Free word order! at 5:19 PM on March 8 [1 favorite]


"You've got to follow your..." OH DEAR GOD GET IT AWAY!!!
posted by symbioid at 5:20 PM on March 8 [1 favorite]


Oh, hey, Hell-Orb! How are you, got any big plans for the weekend? I'm just hoping the weather stays this nice! Well, looks like this is my floor, good to see you.
posted by strangely stunted trees at 5:22 PM on March 8 [2 favorites]


To create mobility you'd need only insert three rigid tubes along the x y & z axes with impellers mounted within. To preserve the appearance you'd simply cover the tubes with a black mesh at the points where they intersect the surface of the sphere.
posted by leotrotsky at 5:48 PM on March 8 [4 favorites]


To create mobility you'd need only insert three rigid tubes along the x y & z axes with impellers mounted within. To preserve the appearance you'd simply cover the tubes with a black mesh at the points where they intersect the surface of the sphere.
posted by leotrotsky at 5:48 PM on March 8 [1 favorite −] Favorite added! [!]


OK, thanks, so there's absolutely no reason not to produce these in the millions then
posted by Bwithh at 5:55 PM on March 8 [4 favorites]


So there's this anime, Gantz, that I never really watched but always looked kind of freaky and twisted and nightmarish and it had this orb.....
posted by sendai sleep master at 5:55 PM on March 8 [1 favorite]


Reminds me of the similarly ominous and inscrutable Terminus, whose antagonist also liked hanging out in underground tunnels and elevators.
posted by Rhaomi at 6:09 PM on March 8 [3 favorites]


Ugh, more nightmares. It reminded me of ballface.
posted by notaninja at 6:18 PM on March 8 [1 favorite]


"A floating black sphere" -- oh come on, people, has Tony Hawk taught us nothing?
posted by straight at 7:28 PM on March 8


Is nobody else reminded of the floating black sphere in the c64 game Impossible Mission?
posted by grumpybear69 at 8:00 PM on March 8


I don't believe this is real. If you do, I think you're naive.
posted by Rash at 9:29 PM on March 8


Did you not read all the links? They explain the design and construction of the orb in detail. What about it seems implausible to you?
posted by Rhaomi at 9:43 PM on March 8


Reminds me of the alien "pet" in Dark Star. I bet it's not so cute, though.
posted by nonspecialist at 12:41 AM on March 9


Oh, I found it: Pinback vs the alien
posted by nonspecialist at 12:41 AM on March 9


"How can we make this seem cooler than it really is?"

"We'll shoot it in black and white, and wear skinny jeans."

"Brilliant!"
posted by Brocktoon at 1:01 AM on March 9


I don't think the sphere is really there in at least some of the video. It "reflects" its surroundings but doesn't reflect the images of people and the relative luminosity changes they cause to its surroundings? This looks a little fake.

I take it back for some of the video, you can see the proper reflections in the confined parts; it's just the tunnel section that looks manipulated.
posted by NiteMayr at 8:08 AM on March 9




Not pictured: radio transmitter relaying everything back to GCHQ.

Nothing to hide, nothing to fear.
posted by Devonian at 8:24 AM on March 9


Man this would be plenty spooky without the hovering black sphere. Just imagine being on an elevator by yourself and hearing the voices and noises of the people who were there an hour ago. With just a tinge of added reverb and fuzz.
posted by rifflesby at 4:49 PM on March 9


Is nobody else reminded of the floating black sphere in the c64 game Impossible Mission?

Somebody is.
posted by escape from the potato planet at 6:37 PM on March 9


well I guess nightmare floating balls have changed from my day
posted by Redhush at 7:28 PM on March 9


My first thoughts were that thing is begging for a baseball bat or, if need be, a shotgun. Ain't no sphere following me around unless I command it.

"Hi spherey, come into my secluded farm house. BAM!"
posted by InsertNiftyNameHere at 8:23 PM on March 9


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