Magic Ball w/ "Go" button.

Magic Ball w/ “Go” button.

In the first class of Introducing Physical Computation of Tom Igoe, for our first assignment– “fantasy devices”, Aaron and I came out of the idea of a food replicator!


  • At first, let’s skip the process of food come out from nowhere!
  • It’s a fabricate kit. With 12 expandable sticks as frames, and 8 magic balls as joints, users can put the food replicator easily into a sack, and assemble it freely into the size they want.
  • After setting up, users can use smartphone to order food products from the on-line catalog. Choose items, put in the cart, and pay the bill.
  • Once finishing the on-line order, users push the “GO” button to execute the processing. Food will suspend until users touch/grab it.
  • Beside “output” food, users can “input” too! By putting food(granny’s jam etc.) inside of the food replicator, items can be easily uploaded and preserved to the on-line catalog(but watch up the expiration date!).


  • 8 balls are responsible for all of the technology.
  • The control interface is simple with a “Go” button on the surface of the ball. Users push the button both to get and upload food.
  • Although only one item can be uploaded a time, multiple items can be replicated since, quote Aaron “…, the replicator will optimize the cube space to materialize as many of the items from the “cart” as is possible.”


  • How to define “food”? Since we don’t want to make this involve with controversial stuff like money, drugs, etc., we limit the output to be just food. Although we can find the definition of food on wiki–

Food is any substance consumed to provide nutritional support for the body. It is usually of plant or animal origin, and contains essential nutrients, such as carbohydrates, fats, proteins, vitamins, or minerals. The substance is ingested by anorganism and assimilated by the organism’s cells in an effort to produce energy, maintain life, or stimulate growth.”  

  • … still, it’s hard to execute.


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