Your Favorite Websites, 3D-Printed Out of Gold

Facebook
Facebook

In the world of Netherlands-based artist Jip de Beer, websites are three-dimensional landscapes, as varied in terrain as a mountain pass or a canyon. The student at the Frank Mohr Institute in Groningen created Web Spaces, a series of 3D-printed sculptures based on the design structure of popular websites, as The Next Web reports.

First, he created a browser plugin that maps the hierarchy of different elements on a webpage (similar to the structure of folders saved on your computer’s hard drive) and assigns each element a color based on how far down it is in the hierarchy.

Then, he took those colorful maps and printed them, making them into abstract elevation maps. The automated design of these sculptures led him to “discover urban landscapes, or structures resembling alien space stations,” he writes.

Using a custom-built automation program to generate the 3D designs, the artist created three-dimensional maps for the home pages of some of the most valuable domains on the web—Facebook, Twitter, Google, and more. He printed them out of materials like gold and bronze, giving them a sculptural panache worthy of their market value. Rather than websites designed for you to chat with friends or check news, they look like fortresses or castles. Which seems like a pretty apt metaphor for the power that sites like Google and Facebook wield over our lives these days.

View from above of a gold-plated Facebook sculpture in shadow
Facebook

A linear gold sculpture representing Google's design
Google

A bronze sculpture of YouTube's design against a white background
YouTube in bronze

A copper sculpture of the hierarchy of Wikipedia's design with corrosion
Wikipedia in copper

[h/t The Next Web]

All images courtesy Jip de Beer. Web Spaces is produced as part of the Summer Sessions Network for Talent Development in a co-production of Kitchen Budapest and V2_ Lab for the Unstable Media, with support of the Creative Industries Fund NL.

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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