Wednesday, 7 May 2008

SPS Take on Planet SciCast

This year, instead of Paperclip Physics, Paulines competed in the first ever Planet SciCast video competition. Not quite knowing what to expect, we jumped right in with a dramatic presentation of the wonders and majesty of the inner workings of the rollercoaster.

Confronted with the option of entering the project, our newly formed team, Team Go, consisting of team leader James Ko, Fred Beardmore, Haruka Chambers and James Linehan, decided to use this opportunity to show the world the true greatness of magnets! Having originally thought to show a myriad of magnetic circus tricks, similar to the wondrous Pythagoras switch (google it), our plans were thwarted by Dr. Gardam and Dr. Holmes. And so, we limited our project.

This was the first step of an arduous yet fruitful journey. With the aid of Dr. Gardam and Mr. Holmes, we honed our brainchild into a lean mean competition winning machine (or so we hoped...).

Performing most of our magnificent feats in the atrium one bank holiday Monday, we collected most of footage required for the final product, with the exception of the final scene, shot on a staircase after many takes of the same temperamental setup.

With the data collected, we were faced with over an hour’s worth of bloopers, and almost exactly two and a half minutes’ worth of useful footage (the maximum length the video was allowed to be), which we managed to salvage from the great mass of useless material.

We congregated on the day before the video deadline and to cut a long story short, we made the film as it is seen today.

The next thing we knew we were sent invites to the award ceremony with two nominations – for Best Technical and Artistic Achievement and for Best Engineering Film.

The judges were overcome by the sheer magnitude of our magnets (yes, we did just say that) and we won the Best Engineering Film award with our “pretty cool” (as Dan Cosser described it) model.

By Fred Beardmore and James Ko

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