I found this very interesting website today: Smart Elements. You can order almost every element of the periodic table and even some isotops of elements. And there are some very interesting elements to play with… for instance those Tritium Trasers. Actually this is a gadget I probably really need because I can’t count the times I searched for the keys in the darkness…
“Traser is the generic name for glass tubes with a phosphor layer in them and Tritium gas inside the tube. They are most often seen as a type of glowing novelty keychain and in self illuminated exit signs. They are also favored by the military for critical applications where there must be illumination regardless of circumstances. They were invented in the 1960s as a reliable self powered light source for NATO. A traser consists of a section of tubular borosilicate glass, coated on the inside with a colored layor of phosphor. Borosilicate is preferred because it is a type of glass noted for its strength and resistance to breakage. In theory one could use any beta emitting gas. In practice Tritium is preferred because it is the least hazardous.”
The second cool “toy” that I found (with the help of cosrahn) on the site is Gallium. A metal whos melting point is 30 degree celsius…so indeed it will melt in my hand… I really have to get this just to play with…
Christian mentioned that they also sell Neodym NdFeB-magnets. I personally did not know what they are, but the site enlightened me and created some respect for them ;-)
Source 1: http://www.smart-elements.com
Source 2: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Traser
Source 3: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gallium
Source 4: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tritium
Source 5: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Neodymium_magnet
We (cosrahn,namenlos,me) took a night hike to the local food supplier. Beside the fact that I discovered places I never would imagine to be near the Campus we had some fun with namenlos’ always-handy-“EOS 300D”…
this is me…laughing and glowing
Actually I had a LED torch…and because it was to bright I used my thumb to dim the brightness…so it’s red because of my thumb
a train passing by…
Actually it was pitch black… only some lights from the … I call it town … and from the train.
PIO Mode… wtf?! This server has decided to access one of its hard disks using the PIO Mode. As a matter of fact this leads to high system loads. This sucks! I’m going to take a visit to the machine… and punch it ;)
What do you think Colorization would be? – Well take a picture, a greyscale one for instance and dye it. When you do this manually it’s a pain-in-the-ass. As far as i know there’s no working automatic solution for this problem. But there is this research project:
“Colorization is a computer-assisted process of adding color to a monochrome image or movie. The process typically involves segmenting images into regions and tracking these regions across image sequences. Neither of these tasks can be performed reliably in practice; consequently, colorization requires considerable user intervention and remains a tedious, time-consuming, and expensive task.
In this paper we present a simple colorization method that requires neither precise image segmentation, nor accurate region tracking. Our method is based on a simple premise: neighboring pixels in space-time that have similar intensities should have similar colors. We formalize this premise using a quadratic cost function and obtain an optimization problem that can be solved efficiently using standard techniques. In our approach an artist only needs to annotate the image with a few color scribbles, and the indicated colors are automatically propagated in both space and time to produce a fully colorized image or sequence. We demonstrate that high quality colorizations of stills and movie clips may be obtained from a relatively modest amount of user input. “
What does that mean? – Well this algorithm automatically creates from this:
Isn’t this awesome? The biggest problem is that it’s just a research project – it’s implemented in Matlab and not available as stand-alone software…too bad. Because it even works with movies.
For more information take a look at their website.
Source 1: Dinge, Zeugs und Sachen
Source 2: Paper: Colorization Using Optimization