IBM’s Atomic Movie

This week IBM released the world’s smallest movie, a stop-motion short film titled A Boy and His Atom: The World’s Smallest Movie…both the boy and his atom are composed and animated out of atoms.

While ostensibly created to “explore the limits of film-making,” the movie serves as an exclamation point on the company’s efforts in the field of atomic-level data storage. IBM recently announced atomic-scale memory technology that can store data with only 12 atoms, and that could one day store every movie ever made in a device the size of a fingernail. Contrast this with the 1 million atoms used to store single bits of data in today’s most advanced storage units.

For more information visit the project Tumblr.

Why I’m Curious?

IBM could have created a 60-second ad with clips of scientists, lab equipment, and a VO touting the company’s efforts in the field of atomic level data storage…but they didn’t, and their work in this field is all the more compelling because of it.

The short film approach serves as an excellent example of show-don’t-tell advertising…In telling their story in this manner, IBM captures the imagination in a way that just wouldn’t be possible given a more straightforward approach.


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