Thanks to Mark Wilson and his Aug. 6, 2013 article for Fast Company for information about this extraordinary science-themed table,
The first three dimensions of Einstein’s space-time continuum are easy–X, Y, and Z vectors give our world a shape. The fourth dimension is time, but it’s a bit more complicated than just looking at a clock because it’s actually all times happening at once. “The separation between past, present, and future is only an illusion, although a convincing one,” Einstein once said. That’s a nice soundbite, but how do you wrap your brain around it?[emphasis mine]
Yberg’s answer to that question is a table. From the Fourth Dimension webpage on the akke functional art (Yberg’s company) website,
The steel-mesh embedded glass top of this piece represents the space-time continuum and the supporting pipes represent four-vectors. This theory, first proposed by Albert Einstein, states that time — the fourth dimension — is only a direction in space and that “the separation between past, present, and future is only an illusion, although a convincing one.” It’s a challenging concept because we are only able to perceive one path that time takes: the ever-changing present.
I began to think about Einstein’s theory, and how it relates to our life experiences and the time that we have for them, when talking to my brother-in-law, Chris. He and his wife, Jill, had recently undergone two of the most emotional events that we experience as humans: the birth of a child, and the death of a loved one — their incredible dog, Hazel. As they joyously welcomed a new member to their family, they grieved for the loss of another. The concept of time — and the importance of cherishing the present — became especially poignant. I built The Fourth Dimension as a gift for their family, celebrating the new and honoring the old.
The four legs of the table represent the four members of their family and the cables represent how they are all connected to one another. Bound together as a family, they rely on each other for support. If any of the cables were severed, the table would collapse.
There’s also a video that features glimpses of the table as Yberg markets his company and its products,
According the akke website, the Fourth Dimension table became available in January 2012.