Grey-BG1Lots of interesting technology and science coming out of MIT these days and I just could not resist sharing it. It appears, or perhaps that is not the correct word for this article, that a team of students are working on creating an algorithms that will make it possible to print out a covering that will assist in the camouflage of stationary objects. I can just see the military getting excited about this one and wanting to put it on top of their buildings that need to remain hidden.

Now my first reaction to this article is what exactly is an algorithm? I know it is something our Technology Expert, Bill Sikkens, always refers to, but what exactly is it?

According to wikipedia “an algorithm is a step-by-step procedure for calculations. Algorithms are used for calculation, data processing, and automated reasoning.” So this team of MIT students are creating a procedure for a software to select the best choices of color and gradient to make a stationary item seem to disappear from view. What a really cool idea! Now of course the art of camouflage has been around for a long time and is used mostly in military situations and are evident in the painting of tanks, airplanes, uniforms, and netting used to hide bases and so forth. But it is also used in civilian applications as well.

First World War German Fokker DVII biplane using camouflage pattern.

First World War German Fokker DVII biplane using camouflage pattern.

How many people have seen the strange cell towers that look like trees? I have seen a number of these and I actually kinda like them. I appreciate the effort to make them look less like a blight on the landscape – especially in areas where the natural landscape should be the focus of attention and not an unsightly cell tower or other man made installation. Here are a few really good examples of how technology can be made to blend into the landscape.camouflaged_cell_phone_tower_08

http://www.networkworld.com/article/2357909/wireless/101594-The-devious-art-of-cell-tower-camouflage.html

http://utilitycamo.com/

So who knows how many useful applications a printable camouflage could result in? I guess only time will tell how creative minds will put these student’s work to good use. Take a look at the video they prepared showing the different angles of the placement of their camo-cube.    I could not see the cube in some photos while others I could.  See for yourself by clicking on the links below.

http://www.wired.com/2014/06/mit-develops-an-algorithm-that-camouflages-eyesores/
http://camouflage.csail.mit.edu/

G.Winkler – Technology Artist © 2014
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