(reblog from BLAINE BROWNELL “Minds and Matter” Blog )
“In the early 20th century, Belgian artist René Magritte created The Treachery of Images, a painting that depicts a pipe with the provocative statement “Ceci n’est pas une pipe (this is not a pipe)” written below it. Magritte’s explanation for the seemingly contrary declaration is that what you see is a representation of a pipe; not the actual object itself.
Thanks to the work of the Institute for Print and Media Technology of Chemnitz University of Technology (pmTUC), an object and its representation have become one and the same. Researchers at pmTUC have recently created printed speakers—loudspeakers that are printed on standard paper. According to senior researcher Georg Schmidt, “Frequency response and hence sound quality are very good and the paper is surprisingly loud. Just the bass of the paper-based loudspeaker is a bit weak.”
Once printed, the paper is connected to an amplifier to intensify the audio signal—similar to a conventional speaker. The method, which is inexpensive to mass produce, suggests many interesting applications. In addition to print product integration, “sound wallpapers and purely technical applications, e.g., distance sensors, are possible, because the papers are also active in the ultrasound range,” says pmTUC head Arved Hübler. “As printing allows for different formats and forms, there is the possibility to influence the generated sound waves.”
Perhaps at the next Magritte exhibition we may hear the artist’s work described by a print of a loudspeaker that speaks.“
“We believe photographs shouldn’t be limited to a page or a frame. They’re meant to be lived with, cared for, and last forever. that’s why we create photography you can touch.” (The Lumi Team)
Lumi is a design team pioneering the Lumityping process, a revolutionary photographic print process for textiles and natural materials. Lumi is taking photography out of the darkroom by using sunlight to make durable prints on sustainable materials. Available in three colours which can be mixed up to create a wider palette, Lumi can be bought directly from the website. (http://lumi.co/) I just bought myself a pack of three. Can’t wait to try it out!!
An elastomer made with mechanophore-linked polymers changes color when stretched.
(Credit: Beckman Institute Imaging Technology Group, Darren Stevenson, and Alex Jerez)
Scientists at the University of Illinois developed a type of polymer that change colour when it becomes overstressed.
Called Mechanochemistry, this reaction is made through the introduction of a special type of molecules that create a chemical reaction, making the synthetic material change its colour when a certain amount of force is exerted upon it.
Two colour change behaviours where explored : one polymer is an amber coloured elastomer that turns more orange when it is pulled and then red before it reaches its point of failure and break ; the other turns form translucent to purple when compressed.
Moreover, this material can go back to its original colour once relieved of stress d perform the same function over and over again.
Integrated to any fibres or textile, this kind of technology is though to be used as a warning signal to communicate the close point of mechanical failure of a material.