How lava lamps help encrypt the internet at Design Museum, Zurich
Posted on February 14th, 2022 by Mathmos
One of the most engaging and soothing features of Mathmos lava lamps is the ever-changing nature of the lava movement. It turns out that this is also perfect for producing the random, chaotic means necessary for strong computer encryption.
A wall of lava lamps encrypts up to 10% of the worldwide web via Cloudflare, a web security and content company in San Francisco, USA. So how do lava lamps encrypt the internet? The encryption is created through snapshots of a video of the moving lava globules; each flow is unique with no pattern – making perfect encryption formula.
To illustrate lava lamps being used for internet data encryption The Zurich Design Museum has created a wall of 100 Mathmos Astro lava lamps as part of their Planet Digital Exhibition. The exhibition is organised in conjunction with the University of Zurich and focuses on installations which invite visitors to experience the science of digitalization with all their senses.
The Zurich Design Museum kindly gave us 50 tickets to offer to our European Mathmos fans to visit the exhibition. Not all Mathmos fans could make it to Zurich to visit the museum, so we offered a giveaway on our Facebook and Instagram pages. This giveaway was for thirty lucky people to win an Astro original lava lamp for their own collections. The Planet Digital Exhibition runs until early June 2022.
It is excellent that the lava lamp, a retro analogue icon created in the sixties, is still being used to help advance technology in the digital age. It is also great that Mathmos lava lamps find favour in today’s technology companies; Google EU Offices are renowned globally for their creative work environment. Google has gifted employees a lava lamp for their desks to inspire creativity and help with mindfulness.