IBM has created a short movie unlike anything you’ve ever seen. The movie, which is titled A Boy and His Atom, is made using stop-motion techniques—such as the ones used in films like The Nightmare Before Christmas and Corpse Bride—but instead of manipulating a visible doll or figure or object multiple times to create a film, this particular film is made up entirely of manipulated atoms that have been magnified by a microscope over 100 million times. This makes it the smallest movie ever made.
As the title implies, the short follows a boy and his friendly, lively atom. It consists of 250 stop-motion frames using techniques that were perfected over years of atomic data storage research. The microscope used to make the movie is not the kind used in science class either, as you may have guessed. This microscope weighs in at two tons, and operates at minus 450 degrees Fahrenheit. The microscope uses an ultra sharp needle to within one nanometer of a copper surface, which attracts the atom and allows them to move one at a time.
Be sure to check out A Boy and His Atom below now!
Part of the research being done was in hopes of discovering ways to store data on atoms, which could one day lead to the ability to store every movie ever made on something the size of a fingernail. Yikes.
IBM also created some images using the atoms, including some for the upcoming Star Trek Into Darkness. Those can be seen at the source link below or on the movie’s app!