Big, complex puzzles get all the attention, but doesn't the other end of the spectrum deserve a little love? Take the smallest jigsaw puzzle in the world, for example. It's not that complicated to put together, but only if you've got a magnifying glass and one hell of a fine touch.
Created by researchers at the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology, the tiny puzzle has just three injection-molded pieces, each less than one millimeter in size thanks to a new molding process called LIGA2.X. Normally, when things this small are molded, they have to be attached to a substrate and then painstakingly removed, which is expensive and annoying. LIGA2.X lets them just pop out of the mold, no problem.
The process should make it way cheaper and way easier to injection-mold tiny, tiny parts for everything from watches to engines to medical devices in the future. But for the time being, this puny little puzzle is a nice proof of concept. Just whatever you do, don't drop any of those pieces on the floor. [PhysOrg]