IBM has announced a new short film that stars actual atoms. The film is called called A Boy and His Atom. IBM created the film by enlarging a microscope focused on atoms. The film was created using 250 stop-motion frames that shows a boy playing with his pet.
To put together the film, IBM used a two-ton scanning-tunneling microscope that can operate at minus 450 degrees Fahrenheit. The microscope used a sharp needle within 1 nanometer of a copper surface to attract and physically move each atom one-by-one, according to Mashable.
Did IBM develop this technology just to create an animated film? Definitely not. The company created the atomic-manipulation technique to pursue efficient storage technologies. By being able to store data on individual atoms, the company would be able to create very high-tech and scalable storage solutions.
In 2012, IBM received a record of 6,478 patents. It was the 20th consecutive year that IBM topped in the annual list of U.S. patent recipients.