Here’s a fascinating video showing how the coupling of 5 metronomes via a common, fluid base pulls the metronomes into sync:

What’s fascinating to me is the very subtle amount of movement that supports the synchronization.

When I create music, I often find myself at the guitar plucking out a chord structure that begins to form a sort of Indian raga rhythm… and that can go on for an hour or more. The repetition sort of pulls you in and forms a rhythm that won’t leave you alone.

Pretty fascinating to see how the universe works in terms of movement.

For more details on this, I encourage you to view the detail page:
Synchronisation of 5 coupled metronomes.

More detailed info provided by a reviewer:

metronomes (or “pendula”) when on table, oscillate with random phases, since that is how they started and they are “uncoupled” (no energy/information flows from one to other so they do not “know” each other.) When they are all together on the cans, notice that the cans themselves oscillate little, providing coupling/information crossover. which forces “synchronization” in periodic systems (discovered by Huygens in 17th century).

Mark Alan Effinger

2 Responses to Getting In Sync

  1. John says:

    This is good in Physical systems. Not so good when peoples thinking becomes coupled, such as with media, political or religious dogma.

    Viva la free thinker.

  2. David says:

    Cool video.

    For me this could be quite a useful metaphor for what it is that I do.

    You see I have discovered a technology that can easily, in the space of one day, create a permanent link to a new gut-brain based platform of perspective where the intellect can be buffered from the “noise” that both the left and right brain produce along with their thoughts. This noise is pervasive and is much like the out-of-sync pendula. The rest and relaxation that we can get from the now organized in-sync choir of metronomes is much like what is experienced by those who use my technology.

    Thanks for this. I think I’ll be pointing to it often.

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