It’s a pool, it’s a tweet it’s a….: When art meets emoticons the result can be awe-inspiring. Every night, Beijing’s iconic Water Cube transforms from an ordinary (albeit beautiful) Olympic pool and into a flashing, high-tech emoticon explosion. Designed from the minds of artist Jennifer Wen Ma and lighting designer Zheng Jianwei, the lighting display creates color patterns based off the emoticons and smileys registered on Chinese social media service Sina Weibo.
As millions of users express their emotions via emoticons, the technology picks up the moods from users’ posts and translates them into specific, continually changing colors. For example, red lights might reflect angry faces and blue tones can emerge from sad faces. Aptly named Nature and Man in Rhapsody of Light at the Water Cube, the show starts at dusk and ends at 10 p.m. nightly. The display launched at the beginning of last week.
Robocarp: If it looks like a fish, swims like a fish and floats like a fish, then it’s a robot. Scientists from the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at the National University of Singapore (NUS) have created a fish robot, aptly named RoboCarp. Using the movements of a real carp as data, scientists have programmed RoboCarp to move almost exactly like a fish including diving, floating and swimming. This is the first time a robot fish has been able to move in a three-dimensional fashion. While the robot can only swim down six feet, it’s a start. Scientists hope to use the new device to eventually explore sunken ships. Since the 22-pound critter can maneuver into spaces that other equipment cannot, plugging a GPS system and a camera onto him will prove to be quite useful.
The Mashies: Mashable is creating a new awards show for the marketing industry. The Mashies, launching in October, will include categories like best real-time marketing (our money’s on Oreo and its superb Super Bowl blackout tweet) and Vine, Instagram and Twitter campaigns.
Social Media: On Friday (June 27) Facebook announced that it will be restricting ads on our news feeds (praise the social media gods.) Although ads won’t be removed entirely (because that would mean Facebook heaven), ads with controversial content will be removed.
Tech: Blackberry–yes, that handheld device that dominated the business world before iPhones and Androids–is still fighting for a place in the market, and it isn’t looking pretty. Despite the launch of the BlackBerry 10, the company’s stock dropped 25%. It’s too early to tell whether the new device will be a flop or a success but only time will truly tell. Read additional information regarding their June report here.
(RoboCarp image via NUS)