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Plastic That Changes Shape In Light

Zonk posted more than 9 years ago | from the i'm-liquid-metal dept.

Science 123

JLavezzo writes "Picture a flower that opens when facing the sunlight. In work that mimics that sensitivity to light, MIT Engineer Robert Langer and his German colleagues have created the first plastics that can be deformed and temporarily fixed into shape by light. This material could one day lead to medical devices that build themselves inside a patient's body, or door latches that can be opened with a flashlight. Additional commentary available at The Science Blog"

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Heat and Artificial Muscles? (5, Informative)

Greg Wright (104533) | more than 9 years ago | (#12250472)

They, the scientists, have been able to do this for some time with
heat. The link below is to an article that shows a 30 gram weight
being lifted and lowered by a type of polymer know as nematic
elastomers.

http://www.sciam.com/article.cfm?articleID=0007C 55 D-FA8F-1C5F-B882809EC588ED9F

they also say in the above article(link) that, "..light can also induce
shape changes anywhere from 10 to 400 percent [in the polymer]."
However, it takes a hours for it to return to the original shape.

One of the best applications,in my opinion, for any fast-acting shape
changing polymer would be as artificial muscles. Not sure how
practical or easy that might be. You would have to get the temperature
range, where the shape changing takes place, down pretty low and find
a way to control it outside of the body's heat influence. I am sure
there are other problems as well.

Re:Heat and Artificial Muscles? (1)

Greg Wright (104533) | more than 9 years ago | (#12250518)

Sorry, spaces in link. Here is a good one.

http://www.sciam.com/article.cfm?articleID=0007C55 D-FA8F-1C5F-B882809EC588ED9F [sciam.com] >

Re:Heat and Artificial Muscles? (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12250694)

So this "heat" that you speak of, it actually melts plastic you say?

Re:Heat and Artificial Muscles? (1)

OccidentalSlashy (809265) | more than 9 years ago | (#12250629)

they also say in the above article(link) that, "..light can also induce shape changes anywhere from 10 to 400 percent [in the polymer]." However, it takes a hours for it to return to the original shape.

Hey, the last time it was exposed to light was four months ago, but I already have a device like that.

Re:Heat and Artificial Muscles? (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12250704)

When will somone invent a viagra replacement using this technology? BOING...

Re:Heat and Artificial Muscles? (1)

ikkonoishi (674762) | more than 9 years ago | (#12251818)

First you have to convince your significant other to have LEDs implanted...

Re:Heat and Artificial Muscles? (1)

Afrosheen (42464) | more than 9 years ago | (#12252296)

Now THAT would make for some great porn! Plus, it'd match up to what I imagine when I'm about to get my freak on..'come into the light'. ;)

Re:Heat and Artificial Muscles? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12250729)

s**t, in a hrs no telling what kinda plastic will melt.

Re:Heat and Artificial Muscles? (0, Offtopic)

Nahor (41537) | more than 9 years ago | (#12251100)

...http://www.sciam.com/...

Haven't you learn yet?
All those links are fake. I receive sciam emails all the time.
Agreed, this one is a bit more tricky because it doesn't talk about nigerian people or about updating your bank information.
But still, the URL should be telling enough!!

Please, read more about siam on wikipedia [wikipedia.org]

Re:Heat and Artificial Muscles? (1)

Jerf (17166) | more than 9 years ago | (#12251813)

You want to use heat energy to trigger shape changes for a muscle?

Not chemical?

Not electrical?

Not light?

Not mechanical?

Did you go looking for the worst possible trigger? :-)

Re:Heat and Artificial Muscles? (1)

fishbot (301821) | more than 9 years ago | (#12253231)

Did you go looking for the worst possible trigger? :-)

I was wondering that myself. Looking at the suggested uses for this light sensitive polymer, it seems that it is a solution looking to a problem. Last I looked, light sensitive door locks were dead easy to build using light sensitive electronic components, and the natural light emitted from the interior of the human body isn't what you'd call dazzling :-/

Re:Heat and Artificial Muscles? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12251903)

Muscles that work when light shines on them?

BIIIIIIRD MAN!!!.....

Real World Applications... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12250477)

Vibrators that get soft when exposed to light, and hard when... well you get the point.

Light inside the body? (5, Funny)

LiquidCoooled (634315) | more than 9 years ago | (#12250490)

I thought you couldn't light the inside your body.

I was under the assumption that was the one place the sun don't shine.

Re:Light inside the body? (1)

superpulpsicle (533373) | more than 9 years ago | (#12250526)

That's it, they are coming out with plastic bullets shot out of a handgun. Which if used under the sun, becomes a giant cannon.

Re:Light inside the body? (1)

univacmac (873719) | more than 9 years ago | (#12250597)

they already have plastic bullets..they would put hollow tips out of business with this new tech. they also have plastic guns, so much for airport security - you know thats why they decided to do it too.

Guess you have never heard of: (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12250722)

(E;3)

Re:Light inside the body? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12251013)

You must be new here. You obviously haven't seen goatse.

Re:Light inside the body? (1)

ChuckSchwab (813568) | more than 9 years ago | (#12251497)

Seriously though, you're right, it seems that the "building something inside the body" has nothing whatsoever to do with matierials that change shape under light. So that dispenses with "use" number one. As for "use" number two (opening doors with light), WTF? Yeah, that sure sounds like something I've always wanted to do...

What real use does this technology have? I can't think of any scenario where this would be more cost-effective than existing technology. This seems like another case of technology for technology's sake. A sad waste of resources, since there are so many better things such intelligent people could be working on.

Re:Light inside the body? (1)

protohiro1 (590732) | more than 9 years ago | (#12251995)

Things that change shape in the body under different situations are VERY useful in medicine. Very common right now are Nitinol [wikipedia.org] devices, which can "remember" a previous geometry. Nitinol stents [wikipedia.org] are saving lives today. I can imagine a polymer that changed shape when exposed to light could be quite useful, as it could be inserted in a catheter and then deployed with a light emiting catheter. Or there may be other reasons to use these polymers. Its a bit early to dismiss their medical use just because light doesn't reach inside your body.

Re:Light inside the body? (1)

ChuckSchwab (813568) | more than 9 years ago | (#12252174)

Things that change shape in the body under different situations are VERY useful in medicine. Very common right now are Nitinol [wikipedia.org] devices, which can "remember" a previous geometry. Nitinol stents are saving lives today.

I understand that. What I don't understand is what light has to do with it. Alternate methods of having something deploy in the body, sure. Methods that involve light? I don't see what use they have in the body. Maybe one day they will (not likely), but aren't we supposed to FIRST find a need and THEN satisfy it, rather than coming up with a useless technology and looking for a use?

I can imagine a polymer that changed shape when exposed to light could be quite useful, as it could be inserted in a catheter and then deployed with a light emiting catheter.

Whatever is used to activate the catheter could be used, more directly, to activate a mechanical component without using light as an intermediary.

I can see the warning signs now (5, Funny)

homer_ca (144738) | more than 9 years ago | (#12250494)

No Flash Photography Please

doors? (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12250496)

Why would you want a door that opens to light?

Re:doors? (1)

Spy der Mann (805235) | more than 9 years ago | (#12250825)

Why would you want a door that opens to light?

I think you should ask Indiana Jones why he WOULDN'T want a door/trap/device that activates with light ;-)

Re:doors? (1)

boring, tired (865401) | more than 9 years ago | (#12251198)

And can't we have that already with "electric eye" technology, solar cells, etc. Not that this isn't pretty cool stuff.

Re:doors? (2, Insightful)

BobPaul (710574) | more than 9 years ago | (#12251688)

The plastic only reacts to certain frequencies, and this is better than an electronic solution since it'll work when the power's out.

It won't automatically open the door when the sun shines on it...

Anyway, the door thing really just sounds like a semi-cool idea, not anything really marketable or practical...

Re:doors? (0)

soft_guy (534437) | more than 9 years ago | (#12251759)

only reacts to certain frequencies

It won't automatically open the door when the sun shines on it...

In order to do that, it would have to not open in the presence of certain frequencies - or in other words open when only certain combination of frequencies were applied to it. That's a pretty tall order and I don't think this technology is capable of that.

Instead it would open in the prence of light or not. I'm not sure where the power is coming from for this?

I don't see a practical use for this in doors, but maybe there could be one that I'm not thinking of.

Re:doors? (1)

ikkonoishi (674762) | more than 9 years ago | (#12251977)

How about windows that if left open at night close at dawn?

Microsoft Addresses the Slashdot Overmind (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12250503)

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Re:Microsoft Addresses the Slashdot Overmind (-1, Troll)

kaens (639772) | more than 9 years ago | (#12253088)

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Coming to a WalMart Near You! (2, Funny)

ackthpt (218170) | more than 9 years ago | (#12250512)

This material could one day lead to medical devices that build themselves inside a patient's body, or door latches that can be opened with a flashlight.

Yeah, like Shrinky Dinks this'll be a hit with the mail-order or discount store crowd before you know it.

People tend to forget what cyanoacrylate's first purpose was [nih.gov] .

Re:Coming to a WalMart Near You! (4, Informative)

mesach (191869) | more than 9 years ago | (#12250610)

One of the first widespread uses maybe but not first purpose. It was used in medical means over 20 years after its invention.

Pasted from the straight dope [straightdope.com]

"Super glue, Krazy glue, Eastman 910 and similar glues are all a special type of glue called cyanoacrylates. Cyanoacrylates were invented in 1942 by Dr. Harry Coover of Kodak Laboratories during experiments to make a special extra-clear plastic suitable for gun sights. He found they weren't suitable for that purpose, so he set the formula aside. Six years later he pulled it out of the drawer thinking it might be useful as a new plastic for airplane canopies. Wrong again--but he did find that cyanoacrylates would glue together many materials with incredible strength and quick action, including two very expensive prisms when he tried to test the ocular qualities of the substance. Seeing possibilities for a new adhesive, Kodak developed "Eastman #910" (later "Eastman 910") a few years later as the first true "super glue." In a now-famous demonstration conducted in 1959, Dr. Coover displayed the strength of this new product on the early television show "I've Got a Secret," where he used a single drop placed between two steel cylinders to lift the host of the show, Garry Moore, completely off of the ground.

The use of cyanoacrylate glues in medicine was considered fairly early on. Eastman Kodak and Ethicon began studying whether the glues could be used to hold human tissue together for surgery. In 1964 Eastman submitted an application to use cyanoacrylate glues to seal wounds to the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Soon afterward Dr. Coover's glue did find use in Vietnam--reportedly in 1966 cyanoacrylates were tested on-site by a specially trained surgical team, with impressive results."

Re:Coming to a WalMart Near You! (2, Interesting)

cgenman (325138) | more than 9 years ago | (#12251539)

I've had doctors tell me that if you have a bad wound in need of stitches but you don't have anything handy, superglue it. It dries fast and strong, and while it may not be terribly accurate it will stop the bleeding. And like the superglue that gets on your fingertips, it eventually goes away on it's own.

Re:Coming to a WalMart Near You! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12252450)

"it eventually goes away on it's own"

So I guess we should superglue that extra apostrophe in ITS?

Re:Coming to a WalMart Near You! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12251945)

It is great for glueing busted finger or toe nails and works wonders on cuts. The funny thing is that with a burning finger cut - the moment you glue it, the pain goes away. I've been using it for this purpose for decades.

Re:Coming to a WalMart Near You! (1)

dsci (658278) | more than 9 years ago | (#12250622)

Uh, that article you link to was 1994, and said that Krazy Glue was tried for cardiac surgery. Krazy Glue existed long before 1994. How is this "first prupose"?

Just wonderin'.

Re:Coming to a WalMart Near You! (1)

ackthpt (218170) | more than 9 years ago | (#12250696)

Uh, that article you link to was 1994, and said that Krazy Glue was tried for cardiac surgery. Krazy Glue existed long before 1994. How is this "first prupose"?

Just a quick match. I knew even in the 60's they were using cyanoacrylate for open heart surgery, because of the necessity of sealing arteries quickly. My father worked in the chemical industry for 38 years and used it as an example, when trying to get something through my thick skull, of the many uses of various compounds.

Was Space:1999 right? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12250515)

Will we have to carry around little personal door openers like Commander Koenig did in Space:1999? :)

WTF? (2, Funny)

El (94934) | more than 9 years ago | (#12250517)

door latches that can be opened with a flashlight.
Right... 'cause we all want a door that opens itself every morning when the sun comes up!

Re:WTF? (3, Interesting)

Mavakoy (730866) | more than 9 years ago | (#12250757)

Could be useful on farms, or if you have a dog in the house and don't want to crawl out of bed first thing!

Re:WTF? (1)

Frankie70 (803801) | more than 9 years ago | (#12251712)


Could be useful on farms, or if you have a dog in the house and don't want to crawl out of bed first thing!


When you have a hammer, everything looks like a nail.

A timer operated door would do the work much
better & cheaper I think.

Also in places like Seattle, the dog would be trapped forever if the door opening was dependent on the sun shining.

Re:WTF? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12251045)

> "Freedom means freedom for everybody"
> -- Dick Cheney

Except for gay people, women who want abortions, pot smokers, black voters in Florida or Ohio...

Re:WTF? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12251388)

His daughter is gay. He's not about to lock her up and throw away the key.

Re:WTF? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12251509)

If I were his daughter, I'd be gay too. (Or anyone's daughter for that matter.)

Reminds me of my old Speeder (5, Funny)

YetAnotherName (168064) | more than 9 years ago | (#12250524)

I had one of those Star Wars Speeders that fit Luke and Ben Kenobi action figures as a kid. It was all plastic. I accidentally left it on the dashboard of my mom's car during a sunny day.

Sure enough, light changed its shape irrevocably.

Uh-Oh... (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12250531)

Read the article carefully.
They're German scientists [sic]...
Probably use it to construct some Nazi anti-Jew plastic-bomb or something.

For Slashdot Readers... (5, Funny)

rookworm (822550) | more than 9 years ago | (#12250548)

This could be the ultimate cure for geeks. Simply wear special plastic goggles that restrict vision (and hence computer access) if wearer does not go outside.

Re:For Slashdot Readers... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12250712)

The goggles... they do nothing!

fuck (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12250563)

this is the third fucking news.com article in a row, lets try to get news from somewhere else please

Application (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12250567)

I don't see all that many applications for this tech, but one which might become useful is covers for solar cells. If they can make the deformation intensity reliant rather than frequency reliant, they can make the covers open when there's sufficient light that it's worth it and close when there isn't.

Re:Application (1)

AngryUndead (733008) | more than 9 years ago | (#12250764)

any light is worth it, as far as I know

Sometimes the simplest things are the best... (5, Funny)

Gadgetfreak (97865) | more than 9 years ago | (#12250569)

Personally, I'd like some self-adjusting miniblinds.

Longhorn features irregular monitors (1, Funny)

Virtual Karma (862416) | more than 9 years ago | (#12250580)

Inside sources have confirmed that Longhorn will have a cool feature called 'irregular display'. If the use hits 'windows key + $ + ^ + F13' the screen would emit a low wave length light that will deform the monitor. You can preset the deformation patterns before hand. This revolutionary feature uses the 'plastic deformable by light' discovered recently at MIT.

"This is a unique feature which will help us take on OS X Tiger" - Gates

The only problem is that once deformed the monitors cannot be reverted to their orignal shape. MS is hoping that the users wont discover this bug. They might fix this in Service Pack 24 for Longhorn.

Weeble Wobbles (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12250581)

Anyone remember the way the plastic inside those used to change shape if you left them in your car on a hot, sunny day.

Odd examples. (4, Interesting)

BigZaphod (12942) | more than 9 years ago | (#12250585)

Why do these "gee whiz" stories about new tech or materials always have such strange example applications?

"This material could one day lead to medical devices that build themselves inside a patient's body, or door latches that can be opened with a flashlight."

Okay, the medical one isn't so bad (except, kinda dark in a body)... but a door latch that opens with a flashlight? Huh?

How about...
- Plastic flowers that open in the sunlight!
- Sunglasses that automatically lower in front of your eyes!
- Light-based transformer toys!
- Gag sundials!

Okay, maybe this is harder than it looks...

Re:Odd examples. (2, Funny)

rookworm (822550) | more than 9 years ago | (#12250604)

Chasitity belts!

Re:Odd examples. (1)

Boronx (228853) | more than 9 years ago | (#12250753)

Just think of the cool booby traps you could design

Re:Odd examples. (1)

nacturation (646836) | more than 9 years ago | (#12251001)

Just think of the cool booby traps you could design

So, uh... a girl walks out into the sunlight and you somehow trap her boobies?

Re:Odd examples. (1)

Surt (22457) | more than 9 years ago | (#12251060)

How about plastic displays that use light activation to make a solid display that requires no backlighting.

Re:Odd examples. (1)

johnmat (650076) | more than 9 years ago | (#12251068)

How about using this in medical implants: a body that changes shape when exposed to light! Imagine the possibilities...

Re:Odd examples. (1)

dgatwood (11270) | more than 9 years ago | (#12251265)

Why do these "gee whiz" stories about new tech or materials always have such strange example applications?

"This material could one day lead to medical devices that build themselves inside a patient's body, or door latches that can be opened with a flashlight."

I don't know about you, but I've always wanted a door lock that a burglar could open just by shining a flashlight on it.... ;-)

But seriously, the potential, assuming it can be done accurately enough and quickly enough, might be something akin to the holodeck. Now -that- would be cool.

Re:Odd examples. (5, Funny)

UserGoogol (623581) | more than 9 years ago | (#12251677)

You have to appreciate the mind of a scientist.

Scientist1: Dude, look at this plastic. When it comes in contact with ultraviolet light, the plastic forms bonds with itself, causing it to change shape.

Scientist2: Awesome! If you hit it with another frequency, the proccess reverses itself.

Businessman: Hm. What sort of applications do you think this could have?

Scientist2: App-li-kay-shuns?

Scientist1: Uh, you could make toys out of it. Or... maybe like you could have it bend into... uh... medical things. For medicine.

Businessman: I'm cutting your funding.

Scientist1: WHY DON'T YOU LOVE ME?!?

Re:Odd examples. (1)

DickBreath (207180) | more than 9 years ago | (#12252933)

Why do these "gee whiz" stories about new tech or materials always have such strange example applications?

When kept in a woman's purse, a, ahem, "toy" remains small. When brought out into the light, it grows.

Then when inserted, it is dark and... oh nevermind.

You're all stupid!! (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12250588)

You're all fucking stupid!!!

http://www.youreallstupid.com/ [youreallstupid.com]

More applications... (0, Troll)

cBrewer (876427) | more than 9 years ago | (#12250591)

Pr0n anyone?

Plastic that changes shape in light - nothing new (2, Funny)

Kevin108 (760520) | more than 9 years ago | (#12250621)

Just think about the dash on the clunker you drove in high school.

cool applications for this (1)

vvaduva (859950) | more than 9 years ago | (#12250625)

Yikes...imagine breast implants made out of this stuff. Ahh...the imagination of a geek!

perfect for the beach! (4, Funny)

bobalu (1921) | more than 9 years ago | (#12251044)

They can stay smallish during the week so the lady doesn't get unwanted catcalls, then when she puts on a bikini - POP!

Ah, plastics... truly better living through technology!

Uh, what?! (1)

EvilSS (557649) | more than 9 years ago | (#12250664)

Cool stuff, but:

or door latches that can be opened with a flashlight.

Why the hell would that be a good idea?!

Re:Uh, what?! (1)

CowsAnonymous (697884) | more than 9 years ago | (#12250772)

or door latches that can be opened with a flashlight.

Why the hell would that be a good idea?!

Step 3: Profit?

I sure hope door latches won't be replaced (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12250690)

"door latches that can be opened with a flashlight"

So now instead of needing a wide range of lock picking tools, you just need a flashlight. Wonderful.

Now you can hide your... (1, Funny)

ad0gg (594412) | more than 9 years ago | (#12250755)

Real doll when you have visitors over, but when the lights turn off at night she transforms like cinderella.

Re:Now you can hide your... (1)

cBrewer (876427) | more than 9 years ago | (#12250840)

I mentioned p0rn and I got troll, you mention blow up dolls and get a +1...

How about self tracking solar panels? (5, Interesting)

ZombieEngineer (738752) | more than 9 years ago | (#12250812)

This could allow retail level solar panels to eek out the equivalent to an additional 2 hours of peak sunlight over a 12 hour period. Initially this would appear to be a 10% improvement but in reality it is closer to a 30% improvement (I will leave it as an exercise for the reader to integrate sin(x.pi/12) from 0 to 12 hours [flat panel on the ground with the sun passing directly overhead] to yield 6.28).

I should imagine the cost of the plastic is going to be far less than the processed silicon for solar cells.

da ZombieEngineer

Re:How about self tracking solar panels? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12251283)

Eek. Sounds like a scary idea.

Uses (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12250865)

This material could one day lead to medical devices that build themselves inside a patient's body, or door latches that can be opened with a flashlight.

What, no flying cars?

Other related work (5, Informative)

karvind (833059) | more than 9 years ago | (#12250915)

Another field where MIT work can be useful is space antennae. Here an optical signal would initiate a sequence of changes in the shape, causing the antenna to refocus on a different point in space.

OSU had developed light-tunable plastic magnets [osu.edu] . Here the plastic material becomes 1.5 times more magnetic when blue light shines on it. Green light partially reverses that effect.

Another interesting work is from PSU on PLZT [psu.edu] , this new material shows a large piezoelectric effect in response to near-ultraviolet light. Piezoelectric materials convert electricity into mechanical energy -- movement. When an electric current is run through piezoelectric ceramic, the ceramic changes size -- it shrinks or expands. Certain ferroelectric materials exhibit stronger photovoltaic (light into electricity) effects. Combining these ferroelectrics with piezoelectrics (electricity into motion), researchers created a single material that would convert light directly into motion.

Old news! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12250922)

Gah, I did this years ago using sunlight and a magnifying glass.

Oh, hold on...

Some other uses (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12250978)

CD that unwraps itself

Condom that changes color according to your mood.

All of these wonderful features with only one piece of plastic. Flashlight not included.

I have something similar. (3, Funny)

KipCas (872321) | more than 9 years ago | (#12251082)

Well, my wife does. It can sort of shapeshift. It is plastic as well and if anybody but me or her see it it becomes a "Back Massager".

trust me (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12251095)

This sheet of plastic is really a model of the Eiffel tower when the lights are off. Trust me, I'm a scientist.

Dark (1)

gnuman99 (746007) | more than 9 years ago | (#12251139)

Now we need plastic that will change shape when exposed to dark :)

Close the door! You're letting the dark in!

Hmm (1)

Rie Beam (632299) | more than 9 years ago | (#12251154)

Joke Sundials, anyone?

So that explains it (4, Funny)

_ph1ux_ (216706) | more than 9 years ago | (#12251199)

I have met some women who have faces made out of this stuff. Unfortunately I had to find out the hard way.

First Good Application (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12251543)

How about condoms that put *themselves* on when you turn the lights off?!

I can beat that (0, Offtopic)

Peter Cooper (660482) | more than 9 years ago | (#12251747)

I have a piece of wood that changes shape in the company of hot chicks.

New Science??? (0, Offtopic)

k00laid (731314) | more than 9 years ago | (#12251763)

Obviously these scientists have never seen the dash of my car...

Plastic surgery... (1)

vspazv (578657) | more than 9 years ago | (#12251791)

Now you don't have to blame the alcohol when you say she looked different because of the low lighting.

Flashlight vs Doorhandle (1)

SUB7IME (604466) | more than 9 years ago | (#12251880)

YES! Now, instead of turning a doorhandle, I can reach into my pocket and turn on a flashlight. I can't wait to buy the batteries.

Re:Flashlight vs Doorhandle (1)

teazen (876487) | more than 9 years ago | (#12252742)

... and in related news yet another starvation death due to dried out battery power. Doorhandle pressure groups reacted outraged, but since flashlight lobbyists can shove heaps of cash towards legislators nowadays, a ban on flashlight operated doors has once again been rejected.

cdrw (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12251997)

Rewriteable CDs anyone?

FINALLY!!!! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12252082)

We now have the means to see if the light really does stay on in the fridge. Check...mate....Maytag

2 ideas (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12252391)

Not all wavelenghts of light are absorbed by human flesh, X-ray comes to mind.

As far as applications for a door. If the lock was composed of several peices of plastic that changed when exposed to different wavelengths you could create a fairly secure lock. You'd need to flash the lock with the right wavelengths in the right order, although it could be a bitch if you lost your "key".

Hmmmm (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12252552)

And the first thought I had was a toy that was a Barbie Doll during the day time, and a dildo at night. For those shy, lonely young women.

You wouldn't have to worry about getting caught with a dildo, either. If someone turns on the light and "catches" you, the most they could ask is "Why do you have a barbie doll in (random orifice)?" Getting caught with a dildo requires no such questions...

Imipolex-G anyone? (1)

SGHarms (167872) | more than 9 years ago | (#12252644)

I find it hard to believe that no /. ers or BoingBoingers mentioned the similarity between this polymer and Pynchon's legendary Imipolex-G - the erotic (as clothing and/or weaponry) polymerproduced in Gravity's Rainbow.

doors opened by flashlights... (1)

JhAgA (24929) | more than 9 years ago | (#12252754)

... and then, when nanotechnoly is thriving, they will come up with something so small, thin and cheap that will make every geek go nuts: a key.

the adult-toy industry is going to love this stuff (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12253117)

in the light -- in the dark -- in the light -- in the dark -- in the light -- in the dark ...
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