Technology is at the heart of everything we do. But as mechanical, electrical and computational systems have become increasingly complex, the control of every day life is increasingly in the hands of those that build it—the engineers.
With time, paint and pictures lose their intensity. But tiny metallic pixels could be used to create vivid images and paintwork that never lose their lustre—and the resulting pictures are becoming more detailed than ever.
Sometimes you can find a real gem on eBay. The UK’s National Museum of Computing at Bletchley Park certainly did: It spotted a Nazi teleprinter used during the war for sale on the site and bought it for just $15.
This is the Fourier Transform. You can thank it for providing the music you stream every day, squeezing down the images you see on the Internet into tiny little JPG files, and even powering your noise-canceling headphones. Here’s how it works.