Author Archives: Mariia Kulik

Star Wars physics – could the “Force” actually be real?

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“Star Wars: The Last Jedi” premiered and its main character Rey seeks to learn the ways of the Force from Luke Skywalker, it raises some questions:

What resembles the Force? Can objects be manipulated instantly from a distance?

“These aren’t the forces that you are looking for”

Obi-Wan Kenobi told Luke Skywalker in the strange Star Wars film that the Force “surrounds us and penetrates us; it binds the universe together.”

Modern physicists know that there are actually 4 elemental forces: the two nuclear forces, the electromagnetic force, and the gravitational force. All of these play a role in contracting matter together, from the minute of atoms to the largest of planets.

However, these are substantially not the forces we are looking for. Old Ben Kenobi, Yoda, and, eventually, Luke, could communicate telepathically over the distances and move objects with their minds.

Are these feats possible? What do the laws of production contend about this?

“I find your lack of faith disturbing”

Einstein’s theory of relativity put some strict limits on how fast we can communicate — the ultimate speed limit is the speed of light.

So, if you needed to send a message to Alderaan to warn the citizens of an Imperial attack, there would always be a delay. Even if you wanted to, you couldn’t warn them in time to evacuate because it takes time for light to travel to transmit the message.

Ben Kenobi couldn’t possibly have felt a disturbance in the Force only a few instants after the Death Star destroyed Alderaan. Or could he?

“It’s true, all of it”

What does quantum physics say about information transferred over large distances? Unfortunately, we cannot break Einstein’s speed limit, even if we had the Millennium Falcon.

However, through a trick of quantum mechanics, you can link two particles in a special way, separate them, and then observe the effects of one upon the other over large distances. This is known as quantum entanglement — placing two objects in the same entangled quantum state. And it is weirder than anything that Star Wars creator George Lucas could come up with (Jar Jar Binks excluded, of course).

It can be demonstrated in the lab with particles of light. When these two particles, or photons, are separated over large distances, they are still correlated with each other. If you measure one particle, the other particle’s state will be determined immediately no matter how far it is away. Einstein didn’t like this idea, since it was “spooky action at a distance.” However, modern physics experiments have shown that entanglement is real — particles can be connected over large distances.

As Han Solo would say: “It’s true. All of it.”

In fact, George Lucas was influenced by quantum theory when he was writing the original script for Star Wars. In the late 1960s and early 1970s, New Age thinkers proposed that quantum entanglement is a “force” that really does bind us all together.

It is well known in physics experiments that the observer can become entangled with the object that they are measuring, changing the measurement.

The Force may actually be with you

The forces we experience on Earth may not operate like the powerful, people-projecting, weapon-deflecting one in “Star Wars” — but force fields do happen here.

But channeling enough force to project a hologram to a distant battle is, of course, unrealistic.

Still, some force fields on Earth are nearly as mysterious as those in the movies.

A report in The New York Times about the US government’s efforts to investigate potential UFO sightings described an incident in which pilots saw something bizarre on their screens in flight.

“They’re seeing an object that seems to have a force field — as they describe it — around it, that’s hovering before it suddenly disappears out of the sky as soon as they think they’re getting a radar lock on it,” Times Reporter Helene Cooper said on The Daily podcast.







3D-Printed Cheese is as tasty as a real one

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There is no doubt for any of us that cheese can be a delicious treat for any occasion. The group of researchers used 3D-printing to create a cheese that is softer and more fluid when it’s melted.

In a recent study, scientists 3D-printed cheese and conducted a series of tests evaluating its texture, resilience and “meltability,” to see how this cheese from the future would look like.

Cheese that was 3D printed was 45 percent to 49 percent softer than the untreated processed cheese, the researchers said. Cheese is produced using techniques that 3D printing mimics very closely, mixing ingredients and molding them into a new shape.

Cheese that was 3D printed was 45 percent to 49 percent softer than the untreated processed cheese, the study authors found. They also discovered that 3D-printed cheese was a little darker in color, and more fluid when melted.

Scientists at the University College in Ireland were curious how the 3D printing process might change the properties of an American classic cheese. The end product was substantially different from the cheese they put in, but this was likely the first time anyone had tried something like this.

“To the authors’ knowledge, no studies have focused upon the impact of additive manufacturing methodologies on the structural properties of dairy products,” the authors write in the study published last month in the Journal of Food Engineering.


How humanity will look like in one million years?

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In a million years people will be almost unrecognizable to anyone who lives today. We will likely have merged with technology to form bionic beings, experts say.

An expert made the comments while discussing the new National Geographic series “Year Million”, which investigates what human life will be in the far future.

Professor Brian Greene, a theoretical physicist at Columbia University in New York City, is a scientist featured in the series. He told that he doesn’t think humans in the year one million will look much like people today. He said our lives will be so different that we would never guess it now.

Most probably, in the future humans could merge with machines.

The experts claim that in 10,000 years from now when our skin and hair color, will no longer be regional but will be distributed around the globe.

In fact, all languages that spoken today will have evolved into something new. In 100,000 years, it is said that humans will have finally made Mars a habitable planet.



Hang out with your favourite Disney characters with Disney’s “Magic bench”

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The “Magic Bench” designed by Disney gives a unique opportunity to sit next to an animated character from our childhood. Isn’t it cool?

The actual interaction with animated characters is happening in the 3D dimension and people can feel they are sitting with them. The bench can sense the person’s presence and offers different options how the communication will look like.

Users are able to see themselves on a video screen that is located in front of them, and any cartoon character can appear. The scene is captured by an RGB camera, An RGB camera delivers the three basic color components (red, green, and blue) on three different wires. This type of camera often uses three independent CCD sensors to acquire the three color signals. RGB cameras are used for very accurate color image acquisitions, and a Microsoft Kinect. The room is designed in three dimensions on the video screen, allowing the users to move behind and in front of the characters.
For example, a movie video shows an elephant that goes and sits on a bench.
The bench system uses haptic feedback to experience the whole thing. So for instance, if the elephant makes a sound, the bench will start to vibrate.

Animated animals also can even react if people will try to touch them. Have you ever seen the “Who Framed Roger Rabbit?” cartoon? Well, that will look pretty much the same. “The bench itself plays a critical role,” says Moshe Mahler, a principal digital artist at Disney Research. “Not only does it contain haptic actuators, but it constrains several issues for us in an elegant way. We know the location and the number of participants and can infer their gaze. It creates a stage with a foreground and a background, with the seated participants in the middle ground. It even serves as a controller; the mixed reality experience doesn’t begin until someone sits down and different formations of people seated create different types of experiences.”
Disney Researchers presented the Magic Bench at SIGGRAPH 2017, an annual conference and exhibition on computer graphics and interactive techniques, that was held in Los Angeles on July 30-August 3.




Composing music is possible now by using our mind

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Did you ever want to write a melody using your mind? Now it is possible. Thanks to the brain-computer interface (BCI) device and researchers from Austria a lot of people with limited physical abilities can compose music with their thoughts.
The researchers from the Graz University of Technology and the University of Graz in Austria improved the device that simulates brain impulses. In fact, they accomplished the “P300 event-related potential,” the electrical brain signal, to make the device work. Interestingly, professional musicians already approved it and achieved excellent results when using the program.

BCI would be easy to use, and the primary goal is to help physically disabled people. This technology differs from the other interfaces that let you play music with your thoughts. For example, it could be used to select a specific type of musical note — a whole note or quarter note, to write a musical score.

The P300 event-related potential makes the BCI work so accurate. The signal, which is associated with focusing attention, can be detected by a type of non-invasive headgear fitted with electrodes called an electroencephalogram (EEG) cap. It sends these signals to an amplifier, which allows a computer to read the user’s brainwaves. Here is an example:

During the experiment, nonprofessional and professional musicians learned how to use the BCI, and they were given tasks: copy-spelling words, copy-composing a melody, and then composing their melody. Nonprofessionals completed the copy-spelling task with 88.2 percent accuracy, while a professional composer achieved 100 percent accuracy. The team’s experiments proved that a P300-based BCI device works for composing the music.


“The results of the BCI compositions can be heard. And what is more important: the test persons enjoyed it. After a short training session, all of them could start composing and seeing their melodies on the score and then play them. The very positive results of the study with bodily healthy test persons are the first step in a possible expansion of the BCI composition to patients,”  – stated Müller-Putz, head of the Institute of Neural Engineering at the Graz University of Technology in Austria.

The fact that the users composed their own melodies prove that the experiment was successful.

Here is a short interesting film that demonstrates the creating of a music track using the mind: