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Science of Toys

In: Computers and Technology

Submitted By galinganal
Words 657
Pages 3
The String Toy is so old that its beginnings are unknown. It is also called either Thread Spinner or Whirling Button. Fortunately for us, that makes the toy quite easy to make. It is an ancient mechanical device used for ceremonial purposes and as a toy. It is an object in the middle of a cord and can be made to buzz by winding the cord while keeping the end stationary. The object moves by pulling and releasing the tension on the cord. The most common way that it was made was with a large button and some string.

History of the toy
As children in the 1950's, this was a favorite toy. It is interactive and although it doesn't seem to do much, the hypnotic whirring and the pulling to keep it moving kept us busy for a long time. There are several different kinds of spinning tops. In East Asia the conventional way of spinning the top is by using a string. By the late 16th century, tops like these were being used by adults in Britain. The Museum has a varied collection of spinning tops, humming tops and gyroscopes. A number of optical toys was developed in the early 19th century and it is used as spinning to create moving pictures. One of these is the zoetrope invented in 1834. It consists of a metal drum pierced by a series of thin vertical slots. Paper strips, depicting a moving figure or object, are placed inside. When the child spins the drum and looks through the slots, the pictures appear to move. This is due to the principle of “persistence of vision”; the brain remembers what the eye has seen for a fraction of a second and so “pieces together” the separate pictures.

How to make a Button-String Toy?
Note: You can make spinner by using either button or bottle cups. 1. Find a large button and some strong string, and you’re halfway to making this toy. If you not have button, you can use bottle caps as substitution for the button but you will need a hammer and a nail to create holes in the bottle caps. 2. The button should be about 2 in (5 cm) in diameter. 3. Thread the string through and form a loop about 15 in (38 cm) long. 4. Place one finger of each hand in either end of the loop and twirl the button so that the string twists. 5. After the string has twisted, jerk both fingers away from the mutton and hold them still. The string will unwind and then wind itself up in the opposite direction.
Commercial Status of Toys
Because of the discovery of Button-String Toy, the not only the children are interested in this toy but also the scientists especially physicist who specializes physics’ concepts. Scientists are interested in study this toy because they want to figure out what are the possible mechanisms behind this toy. The children is also interested to buy this toy because they want to have fun and to test what are features does this toy have.

Once you get the rhythm of the motion, you can keepit up for some time. This toy may not sound like much fun when you read about it,but when you play with it, you’ll find it almost hypnotic and difficult to put down. The button acts as a flywheel. But in this toy, it stores its spinning energy in the string by twisting it. When the string is winding up, it is storing potential energy, energy that can be converted to motion at some time in the future. When you jerk on the string, the potential energy is converted to motion, or, to be precise, kinetic energy: that is, the button spins in the other direction. Once the string has unwound, the button continues spinning, and the kinetic energy begins changing back into potential energy.

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