Phun the 2D physics sandbox from Algoryx

Phun screenshot
screenshot of moving rollers and crawlers ~ by Emil

Phun is a dynamic 2D simulation sandbox designed to play with and learn mechanics in a constructivist, exploratory way. Young (or old) physicists can create mechanical systems with masses, wheels, springs, hinges, motors, liquids, and more. The samples below offer video samples of the variety of simulations you can build and explore.

The Phunland site has a great compilation of tutorials here. Start with the Basic Tutorial series to learn the tools and to create an awesome tower-building and catapult-destroying activity.

Over 1,000 Phun tutorial and demonstration videos are available on YouTube (search for "Phun").

The 6-minute video below is the best introduction to the variety of behaviors you can find in Phun. It has been viewed by nearly 2 million students, teachers, and "phunsters."

This 28-second video shows a walking kinetic sculpture created by well-know kinetic artist Theo Jansen. Note how the single motor turning the wheel distributed power to the linkage of legs. The wings are just for fun here, but most of Theos physical sculptures are wind-powered!

We're confronted by insurmountable opportunity!
-- Pogo (Walt Kelly)

About this page

Of all the sciences, many consider physics the most abstract. While great physics examples are all around us, school textbooks, labs, and "physics math" don't seem to invite students to the fun and understanding that physics can bring. Phun provides a game-like "sandbox" where students explore physics principles dynamically. They build constructions and then apply gravity, springs, impact, force, friction, and lots more in an entertaining context. After students gain a comfort level with Phun, traditional physics may make more sense. By the end of 2008, Phun was installed on about 300,000 school computers. Millions have seen the Phun videos, and many creative people have enjoyed thousands of hours of education and entertainment.

About Phun

This free software for Windows, Macintosh, and Linux was designed by Emil Ernerfeldt for his master's thesis at Sweden's Umea University. It's mathematical model is based on the SPOOK linear constraint solver, and there is a built-in programming language called Thyme for advanced users. The name Phun combines the "ph" of physics with the "un" of fun. The most recent version of Phun has been renamed Algodoo and is being commercially distributed through Algoryx Simulations.

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