Hypnotic Coffee Table Creates Sand Art With a Magnetic Marble

Bruce Shapiro
Bruce Shapiro

A living room featuring this kinetic art table has no need for coffee table books—or a television, for that matter. You can happily entertain yourself for hours just watching the steel ball create patterns in the sand.

According to Creators, artist Bruce Shapiro based his design off the myth of Sisyphus, in which a man is forced to push a boulder uphill for eternity. Like Sisyphus’s stone, the marble in this table doesn’t roll towards a final destination. Guided by a magnet beneath the surface, the ball creates intricate grooves in the top layer of sand until the table is unplugged. The table resets with a new path as soon as it completes a pattern.

Metal ball carves intricate patterns into sand art coffee table.
Bruce Shapiro

Metal ball carves intricate patterns into sand art coffee table.
Bruce Shapiro

Last fall, Shapiro took his table to Kickstarter, where he raised over $1,900,000. A commercial website for the product is currently in development. To witness the mesmerizing process, check out the video below.

[h/t Creators]

Look Closely—Every Point of Light in This Image Is a Galaxy

ESA/Herschel/SPIRE; M. W. L. Smith et al 2017
ESA/Herschel/SPIRE; M. W. L. Smith et al 2017

Even if you stare closely at this seemingly grainy image, you might not be able to tell there’s anything to it besides visual noise. But it's not static—it's a sliver of the distant universe, and every little pinprick of light is a galaxy.

As Gizmodo reports, the image was produced by the European Space Agency’s Herschel Space Observatory, a space-based infrared telescope that was launched into orbit in 2009 and was decommissioned in 2013. Created by Herschel’s Spectral and Photometric Imaging Receiver (SPIRE) and Photodetector Array Camera and Spectrometer (PACS), it looks out from our galaxy toward the North Galactic Pole, a point that lies perpendicular to the Milky Way's spiral near the constellation Coma Berenices.

A close-up of a view of distant galaxies taken by the Herschel Space Observatory
ESA/Herschel/SPIRE; M. W. L. Smith et al 2017

Each point of light comes from the heat of dust grains between different stars in a galaxy. These areas of dust gave off this radiation billions of years before reaching Herschel. Around 1000 of those pins of light belong to galaxies in the Coma Cluster (named for Coma Berenices), one of the densest clusters of galaxies in the known universe.

The longer you look at it, the smaller you’ll feel.

[h/t Gizmodo]

Unwind With 10 Hours of Soothing Ocean Footage From BBC Earth

iStock
iStock

The internet can be a stressful place at times. Do yourself a favor by taking a break from the endless barrage of content to focus on the tranquil beauty of nature. The video below, spotted by Motherboard, features 10 hours of peaceful oceanscapes, courtesy of BBC Earth.

Unlike BBC's usual nature documentaries, which almost always include narration, this footage is completely human-free. There are no voices, no music, and no graphics. Instead, you'll find leisurely shots of whale sharks, schools of hammerheads, sailfish, and sea turtles drifting through the open ocean to a soundtrack of sloshing water.

Even if you don't have time to watch the whole 10 hours, just a few minutes of sitting in front of the meditative footage is probably enough to refresh your brain. Just don't be surprised if a few minutes quickly becomes an hour (or a few).

And if 10 hours of relaxing video still isn't enough for you, we recommend checking out some Norwegian slow TV. "Shows" include footage of a sea cruise, a train ride, and migrating reindeer.

[h/t Motherboard]

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