Hydrogel is one of those amazing materials that are going to help us build a future. Now some researchers at Hokkaido University, over in Japan, have have figured out how to make one type of hydrogel react to hot and cold water so that it can memorize and forget information in the same way that the brain does. Other than just being really cool, this new gel could be a major development for high-security systems where the ability to make passwords disappear is vital.
A paper on the research was recently published in the journal PNAS. In the time-lapse video below, you can see the word “gel” sequentially disappearing one letter at a time, due to the fact that each letter cut-out had been exposed to the hot water for an increasingly longer time period.