h a l f b a k e r y
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If you had limited space for a running track then one way of seeing who wins a race would be to have a large block of jelly. Then runners would accelerate to full speed and slap straight into it. the one who gets furthest into the jelly, i.e., has maximum speed or momentum, is the winner.
sure how people would breath once they got into the jelly but I like the image of several runners stuck in stasis in running pose.
I'm not sure what physical characteristics would need to optimised - someone with high momentum (mass x speed) and a low frontal area, I suppose. Mass might relate to muscle, so the distance into jelly might well map across into what they would have done in full length sprint.
Swimming in custard
Related halfbakery idea. [hippo, Dec 10 2001, last modified Oct 04 2004]
Diving into chocolate
Related halfbakery idea. (Do we need a "Sport in food" category?) [hippo, Dec 10 2001, last modified Oct 04 2004]
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||Runners would slowly evolve to have optimum frontal area: jelly bellies.
||The winner doesn't necessarily have to have the most
speed or velocity...so what happens when the last place
winner is the biggest and can get the furthest into the
jelly even though he got beat by a number of people?
The block of jelly, as well, would have to be human size --
and on a hot day, this idea would melt as quickly as the
||Why not just use custard instead?
||Well, custard would fall over - it's not solid (at least not the custard we have). Also, you can't see into it to measure how far people had got.
||A related notion would be to pour quick setting jelly into a swimming pool. I suppose this could be used where you only have a shallow pool and needed to break drivers in competition (you'd still mark them as they dove down).
||...and some athletes might cheat by trying to eat their way through it :-)
||You might want to consider Aerogel instead, 99.99% air, yet dense. Has been used on recent comet chasing missions to retrieve dust from comet trails. Not sure if you could breath through the stuff but it might be safer than jelly.
||Aerogel is hard--it would hurt to run into that.