Bouncing Bucky Ball at Flipbook Mini Hack

The 2023 MATLAB Central Flipbook Mini Hack contest runs from November 6 until December 3. Over 200 entries have been submitted in the first two weeks.


New Rules

This year's mini hack features short animations. The contest software runs the program you submit to make an animated GIF file with exactly 48 frames and an inner-frame delay time of 1/24 second. So, your animation will run for two seconds, then continuously repeat. If you want periodic motion, you need to be back where you started by frame 48.

In previous mini hacks, programs had to be Twitter length -- at most 255 characters long. Now, the new limit is 2,000 characters. Comments and formatting blanks are not counted. Remixes and reuse of other submissions is encouraged.

Participants and other viewers vote on the submissions. There are prizes like Amazon gift cards and T-shirts. MathWorkers may participate, but not win prizes.


Take a look at the Gallery.

Personal Favorites

I find the results fascinating. There are so many different creative styles, artistic talents and programming techniques. Here are a few of my personal favorites.

Jenny Bosten

Jenny Bosten is a familiar name on MATLAB Central. She is a Senior Lecturer in Psychology at the University of Sussex, where she is a "visual neuroscientist specialising in colour vision." Her code for Time lapse of Lake view to the West shows she is also a wizard of coordinate systems and color maps.

隆光 中村

I don't know anything about this person. All I see is this name, 隆光 中村, and this ingenious code for Fireworks.

Ned Gulley

Ned is the long-time MathWorker who is the architect of MATLAB Central, and who, this time, is also a prolific participant. One of his more mathematical animations is Orbiting Roots.

Eric Ludham'

Eric is head of the MathWorks development team for Graphics and Charting. Contributions like this Blooming Rose demonstrate his artistic design talent.

Bouncing Bucky Ball

My own contributions are not nearly as attractive as these.

The 2,000 character limit is a good idea. It forced me to look critically at some old code and rewrite it to be simpler and clearer.

This program for a Bouncing Bucky Ball uses the hgtransform object to good effect. I also think it has a nice solution to the problem facing everybody of how to retain state from one frame to the next.


Here is a link to a slightly more complicated version with one togglebutton that provides a random restart capability. Bouncing_Bucky.m


Chen Lin, David Wey and Vinay Ramesh are running the Mini Hack this year,

Published with MATLAB® R2023a

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