Imagine you could influence the bubbles in your Coca Cola in such a way that you could create letters and numbers in your glass.

Californians have developed a technique that actually does this. It is called Bubble Imaging Technology (BIT) and will be marketed as a visual communication medium for presentation of textual and graphical information in fluid-based display products, such as clocks, message boards, advertisement displays, and educational toys.

Bubble Imaging Technology is a combination of engineering and art that is utilized to generate the effect of vertically scrolling characters and graphics within a fluid. Compare it to the scrolling texts that so many web pages have these days, but then in physical shape. Generating and positioning coloured bubbles within a clear fluid medium accomplishes the effect, while the upward motion of the coloured bubbles can be influenced by specific fluids with different density and viscosity.

The first product is currently under development: The Bubble Clock. Individual bubbles are released at the same time to form a single row of bubbles that moves as an entity towards the top of the display. Another row is created milliseconds later, and so on. After a few seconds, the bubbles 'as a whole' reach the top of the display and are recycled back to the bottom by an internal mechanism. The process repeats and allows viewing of several rows of bubbles at a time to give the effect of vertically scrolling text or graphics.

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