Friday, July 29, 2011
Chinese supermarket trialling WiFi-enabled tablet PC-equipped shopping carts: "It doesn't have quite the appeal of sending a robot to do your shopping, but this Smart Cart service being trialed by SK Telecom could definitely take some of the hassle out of trolling the supermarket aisles."
Posted by steve at 11:45 AM
Cows check in for meals using electronic ear tags: "With diseases such as Foot and Mouth, TB, and of course Mad Cow still presenting a danger to cattle, it's of the utmost importance that farmers monitor the health of their animals, and immediately proceed to isolate any that might be showing symptoms."
Posted by steve at 11:44 AM
Hitting the brakes by reading drivers’ minds: "With human error the predominant cause of car accidents, automatic braking systems like the Pedestrian Detection system found in the Volvo S60 use cameras and sensors to assist drivers in detecting oncoming hazards and automatically applying the brakes."
Posted by steve at 11:43 AM
Wireless sensor to monitor structural integrity of bridges: "According to a 2009 estimate by the U.S. Society of Civil Engineers, more than one in four U.S. bridges are either structurally deficient or functionally obsolete. While newer 'smart' bridges have embedded wired networks of sensors to monitor their structural integrity, the high cost of installing such systems on existing bridges is simply unaffordable for strained city, state and federal budgets."
Posted by steve at 11:42 AM
'Roll it' turns compact housing on its head: "Students from the University of Karlsruhe in Germany have created a flexible housing solution that makes the most of its minimal interior space in a very unusual way. Dubbed 'Roll it', this cylinder-shaped home changes its purpose depending on its orientation - roll the the work space 180 degrees and it becomes a bed, the kitchen becomes a bathroom and you even get some exercise in the mouse wheel-like center section when you decide to 'move house'."
Posted by steve at 11:41 AM
Thursday, July 28, 2011
Acoustic diode allows sound waves to only travel in one direction: "When it comes to the sound-proofing of buildings, most people likely think of using materials that simply absorb the sound waves in a noisy room, so they can't proceed into a neighboring quiet room. Researchers at the California Institute of Technology (Caltech), however, are taking a different approach."
Scientists create water walking bionic microrobot: "Chinese scientists have developed an aquatic microrobot that mimics the water-walking abilities of the Gerridae - a family of long-legged bugs commonly known as water striders that are able to run on top of the water's surface. The scientists say their bionic microbot incorporates improvements over previous devices that make it an ideal candidate for military spy missions, water pollution monitoring and other applications."
Fujitsu Toshiba unveils IS12T - world's first Mango OS phone: "Fujitsu and Toshiba have announced IS12T, the first smartphone to run on Windows Phone 7 with the new Mango update pre-installed. The new smartphone is waterproof and dust-resistant and comes with 13.2 megapixel camera and large 32GB of internal storage."
Posted by steve at 10:45 AM
Ion Audio’s Piano Apprentice + iDevice = personal, take anywhere piano tutor: "We recently took a look at the iPerform3D online guitar lessons for those looking to unleash their inner Hendrix, but if you're thinking tinkling the ivories might be more your style then Ion Audio's Piano Apprentice could be worth a look - at least for a basic introduction to playing the piano. Following the Simon school of music instruction, the Piano Apprentice features a 25-note keyboard that docks with an iPad, iPod touch or iPhone to demonstrate how to play as the relevant keys on the device light up."
Posted by steve at 10:39 AM
Lockheed Martin’s HALE-D airship takes to the air: "With the use of airships for passenger transport decreasing in the early 20th century as their capabilities were eclipsed by those of airplanes - coupled with a number of disasters - they were largely resigned to serving as floating billboards or as camera platforms for covering sporting events."
Posted by steve at 10:37 AM
Wednesday, July 27, 2011
'Dynamic charging' might let electric race cars juice up while moving: "As some Gizmag readers will already know, the new technical regulations for Formula One racing state that cars must move under electrical power only when in the pit lanes. Eyebrow-raising though that may be, two companies are currently collaborating on technology that would see cars being powered by electric motors for the entire race."
Boeing and BAE team up to develop laser weapon for the U.S. Navy: "Both Boeing and BAE Systems have been working on laser weapon systems for use at sea for a number of years and now the two companies have teamed up to develop the Mk 38 Mod 2 Tactical Laser System for the U.S. Navy. The system combines both kinetic and directed energy weapons capability by coupling a solid-state high-energy laser weapon module with the Mk 38 Machine Gun System that is already in use on many U.S. Navy vessels."
The 75th anniversary of the Supermarine Spitfire: "As much as Goodwood might hold special significance for automotive enthusiasts, the estate also has strong ties with the world of aviation. During WWII it was an active fighter airbase (aka RAF Westhampnett), and there are many other aspects which make it a particularly appropriate venue at which to celebrate the 75th anniversary of most famous British aircraft of all-time - the Supermarine Spitfire."
State of the Internet report - Asia still fastest, new source of attack traffic emerges: "Akamai might not be a household name but between 15 to 30 percent of the world's Web traffic is carried on the Cambridge, Massachusetts-based company's internet platform at any given time. Using data gathered by software constantly monitoring internet conditions via the company's nearly 100,000 servers deployed in 72 countries and spanning most of the networks within the internet, Akamai creates its quarterly State of the internet report."
Posted by steve at 12:00 PM
Software picks out fake online reviews: "One of the great things about the internet is the fact that everyday people can share what they know with the entire world, so if they've had a particularly good or bad experience with a business or product, they can notify everyone via customer review websites. The flip-side of that, however, is that business owners can plant fake reviews on those same sites, that either praise their own business or slam their competition."
Posted by steve at 11:59 AM
Tuesday, July 26, 2011
Power Up gives paper planes an electric boost: "Although they've been around for ages, for some reason paper airplanes have never been adopted for commercial use. It could be because they get soggy when wet, they lack any kind of flight controls, or because you would need an incredibly huge piece of paper in order to make one big enough to carry a human passenger."
Posted by steve at 10:24 AM
Compostable bikinis take to the catwalk in Miami: "Miami Swim 2012 Fashion Week has premiered what may well be the world's very first compostable swimsuits. The two earthy swimsuit creations took center stage during the HauteNatured fashion parade on July 15th and whilst they may be compostable, they'll also do their job in the water, assures sustainable clothing designer, Linda Loudermilk"
Posted by steve at 10:23 AM
Fujitsu releases Windows 7 F-07C Mobile Phone: "Fujitsu has launched what is claimed to be the world's smallest Windows PC / smartphone. Available only in Japan at the time of writing, the new F-07C phone has two modes of operation - one which gives users all we've come to expect from a modern smartphone, and another that launches a full version of Windows 7 to offer personal computing in the palm of your hand. It's powered by an Intel Atom processor, has system memory and solid state storage, and benefits from a slide-out tactile keyboard."
Low Drag Lightweight Jaguar E-Type Concept car makes public debut 47 years after it was built: "It's not often that a car makes nearly fifty years after it was built, but that's what happened at the recent Cholmondely Pageant of power when the newly-restored, one and only factory-built Low Drag Lightweight Jaguar E-Type of 1964."
WALL-E toy gets gift of robotic life: "Disney went into robotic toys market with a remote-controlled WALL-E robot back in 2008. Canadian-based robotics enthusiast DJ Sures was apparently not satisfied with the level of realism of the toy so he came with his own, customized version of WALL-E. Utilizing The U-Command Wall-E plastic toy, he modified it with EZ-B Robot controller hardware, voice recognition and a movement-tracking camera - but no trash compactor."
Researchers create artificial lung that works with air rather than pure oxygen: "Researchers have created an artificial lung that uses air as a ventilating gas instead of pure oxygen - as is the case with current man-made lungs, which require heavy tanks of oxygen that limit their portability."
Monday, July 25, 2011
Foldable boat packs into a portable carry bag: "Joining the list of foldable products, Foldaboat is a flat-pack recreational boat suitable for flat water environments like canals and lakes. Designed by Arno Mathies & Max Frommeld, the 2.5-meter (8.2-foot) boat is made from a solitary piece of plastic, and after a few simple folds it packs nicely into a 150 x 60 cm (59 x 24 inch) parcel."
QUMA USB-powered figure could make 3D motion-capture easier: "It's been more than 20 years since Jordan Mechner used videos of his brother running and jumping as a reference to design in-game movements for the Prince of Persia video game"
Caltech creates first artificial neural network from DNA: "One of the things that our brains excel at is the ability to recognize what things are, even when presented with an incomplete set of data. If we know only that an animal is sold in pet stores and stuffs food in its cheeks, for instance, we can be pretty certain that the animal in question is a hamster."
Posted by steve at 10:09 AM
Air guitarists rejoice and make some noise with Air Picks: "Rocking out with an imaginary guitar has gone from appreciative concert mimicry to a very serious business. Next month, finalists from around the world will head to Finland in the hope of being crowned Air Guitar World Champion."
Posted by steve at 10:08 AM
Thursday, July 21, 2011
SOFT Rocker uses solar to top up your gadgets while you relax: "There's nothing quite like an old rocking chair for finding your center and chilling out. Originally thought to have been developed as garden furniture, the rocker has now come full circle with the development of the SOFT Rocker by Professor Sheila Kennedy and architecture students from MIT."
The foldable phone concept: "We've seen the cardboard record player and cardboard USB sticks, now another design that thinks outside the (cardboard) box - the foldable phone concept. Created by Chengyuan Wei, the Origami phone handset comes flat and like a pop-up book, transforms into a 3D handset with a few simple folds ... oh, and it's recyclable."
Asus Padfone - 4.3-inch smartphone docks inside 10.1-inch tablet: "Asus always opens its home computer show Computex with a bang and this year it was the Padfone - a 4.3-inch smartphone that docks inside a 10.1-inch tablet dock with dynamic display switching, two batteries, a shared SIM card, a single hard drive, Qualcomm processor, Android's next generation operating system (Ice Cream Sandwich) and a Q4, 2011 launch date with a price in the US$800-1,000 area."
Gorilla 900GB, 2GB/s PCIe solid state storage solution announced: "Texas Memory Systems has just unveiled a monster enterprise-level PCIe-based solid state storage solution that's blisteringly fast and offers almost a terabyte of available capacity. Nicknamed Gorilla by the company, the RamSan-70 represents the seventh generation of the RamSan product family and uses Toshiba 32nm SLC Flash on a single half-length x8 PCIe card."
Posted by steve at 10:15 AM
Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG Roadster - more details and new pics: "The SLS AMG roadster is nearing its official unveiling date of autumn 2011 and Mercedes is looking to further whet our appetites with the release of more images and info on the AMG-developed droptop supercar"
Sanzpont proposes shape shifting 'Room for London': "Commissioned by Living Architecture and Artangel, the challenge of 'A Room for London' was to design a one-bedroom temporary installation to be perched on top of the Queen Elizabeth Hall at the Southbank Centre, well known to be one of London's most visible sites."
Wednesday, July 20, 2011
GPS-based ToyToyota app lets kids 'drive' from the backseat: "Backseat Driver is the first 'toy' by ToyToyota, a new brand from the Japanese automotive company. It's in the form of a simple GPS-based app for iPhone, iPod touch and iPad, and allows kids to take a virtual drive linked by GPS to the current driving route in the real world."
Steampunk Plasma Speaker produces electrifying sound: "So, you've downloaded some songs by Abney Park (one of the world's few steampunk bands) onto your Datamancer laptop or your Old Time Computers-accessorized PC ... do you just listen to them through the built-in speakers? Not if you're Polish tinkerer Conscious Flesh."
HipDisk - bending over backwards for music: "We've seen a number of weird and wonderful musical creations here at Gizmag but we have to agree with the creator of the hipDisk when she describes it as possibly the most undignified musical instrument ever."
Victorinox Slim Flash bladeless Swiss Army tool is now available: "A quality Swiss Army multi-tool with a knife used to be in every boy's wishlist in the past, but with the modern day road warrior's kit now taking a decidedly digital bent Victorinox Swiss Army is now offering tools that don't feature any kind of blade at all."
Hydrogen found to be essential to creating better graphene: "Graphene, the 'wonder material' composed of single-atom-thick carbon sheets, is currently finding its way into a variety of electronic devices including computer chips, capacitors, transistors and batteries, just to name a few. It is typically created using a chemical vapor deposition process, in which carbon-containing gases are made to decompose on a copper foil substrate."
Graphene coating harvests energy from flowing water: "Hydroelectricity is the most widely used form of renewable energy, supplying around 20 percent of the world's electricity in 2006, which accounted for about 88 percent of electricity from renewable sources. Now researchers at the Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute have developed a new method to harvest energy from flowing water using a nanoengineered graphene coating."
Posted by steve at 9:24 AM
Tuesday, July 19, 2011
Ideum introduces new MT55 Platform multitouch table: "Ideum has unveiled a new addition to its series of 55-inch, high definition LCD multitouch tables. Billed as the thinnest commercially-available multitouch table top on the market, the new MT55 Platform sports an optical touch system capable of handling 32 touch points simultaneously and comes with SSD storage."
Posted by steve at 9:41 AM
Ship-based system designed to harness energy from waves: "Why don't we have stationary commercial fishing platforms that are anchored offshore, where they sweep the waters with their nets, sending the captured fish back to shore through a pipeline?"
New fluorescent protein allows scientists to see living organs: "There are several techniques used by researchers and physicians to image the internal organs of people and animals, but each of these techniques have their shortcomings."
Study shows why human-like robots give people the creeps: "People seem to enjoy watching robots and cartoon characters move about, and usually don't mind seeing other humans going through their daily motions, but when it comes to artificial creations that are made to look very human ... they're not always so popular."
Home-built LEGO PC donates its computing power to medical research: "Most of the custom-built DIY PCs featuring unusual case mods are made just for fun or fashion. The LEGO-bodied PC by Mike Schropp is quite different, however, despite the fact it looks really impressive. It's a 12-core PC setup consisting of three systems in a single box made of LEGO, with its computing power being donated to medical research and humanitarian projects via IBM's World Community Grid project."
The Model 367 “BiPod” hybrid flying car designed by Burt Rutan: "The team at Scaled Composites pulled out all the stops to realize the final design of the company's founder and former CTO, Burt Rutan, ahead of his retirement in April earlier this year. In just four months, the Scaled Composites team went from beginning the preliminary design to the first flight of the 'BiPod', a hybrid gasoline-electric flying car that grew out of a program to develop a rapid, low-cost electric test bed using as many off-the-shelf components as possible."
Posted by steve at 9:34 AM
Monday, July 18, 2011
Batmobile replica powered by real jet engine: "Last October, we told you about the full-scale working Batmobile replica built by movie prop-maker Bob Dullam. The version of the iconic superhero vehicle that Dullam chose to recreate was the rugged, Hummer-esque beauty from Batman Begins and The Dark Knight, known as the Tumbler."
Posted by steve at 9:36 AM
MIRAI SANZO - Android-powered home robot from Sanyo: "Japanese company Sanyo Homes has introduced its MIRAI SANZO Android-based robot for the Japanese market. It connects to external networked devices, and allows them to be controlled via voice commands or remotely, through a smartphone."
Sony unveils smaller new W Series Walkman: "You like listening to music while you work out, but you don't like snagging your personal music player's cord with your arms, nor do you like ruining your earphones by getting them all sweated up."
Final flight of Sikorsky X2 demonstrator makes way for S-97 Raider helicopter: "Sikorsky's X2 Technology Demonstrator that first took to the air on August 27, 2008 has flown for the last time. The 23rd and final flight was conducted in the early morning of July 14, 2011 from Sikorsky's new Innovations Center in West Palm Beach, Florida."
Posted by steve at 9:33 AM
NASA’s Dawn spacecraft becomes first probe to enter orbit around object in asteroid belt: "On Saturday, NASA'a Dawn spacecraft entered orbit around the asteroid Vesta, becoming the first probe ever to enter orbit around an object in the main asteroid belt between Mars and Jupiter."
Aluminum-Celmet material could boost the range of electric vehicles by 200 percent: "Range anxiety, the fear that such vehicles will leave the vehicle's occupants stranded well short of their destination, remains one of, if not the main barrier to the widespread adoption of EVs."
Friday, July 15, 2011
Philips to develop LED-illuminated wallpapers: "The future of ambient lighting might lay in glowing walls, according to Philips. The company has announced its plans to develop wallpapers containing integrated LEDs. The luminous sound-absorbing textiles would glow in variety of colors accordingly to the user's requirements. To develop the luminous wallpaper panels, Philips is collaborating with customizable acoustic panels manufacturer Kvadrat Soft Cells, based in Denmark."
Wireless power for heart implants could reduce infections, increase mobility: "While implantable heart pumps may buy some time for people waiting to undergo heart transplants, such implants have at least one serious drawback - because they receive their power from an external source, a power cord must protrude through the skin of the patient's belly. About 40 percent of patients experience infections of that opening, which often require rehospitalization, and in extreme cases can even cause death."
Breakthrough in development of cable for ultra-efficient electricity grid of the future: "The United States' copper-based electric grid is estimated to leak electricity at an estimated five percent per 100 miles (161 km) of transmission. With power plants usually located far from where the electricity they produce will actually be consumed, this can add up to a lot of wasted power."
Posted by steve at 10:28 AM
New process discovered for chemically storing solar energy: "While solar panels are very useful at converting the sun's rays into electricity for immediate use, the storage of that energy for later use is ... well, it's still being figured out"
Posted by steve at 10:27 AM
Thursday, July 14, 2011
MIT unveils durable solar cells printed on paper: "We've been following MIT's progress on creating solar cell-coated paper since 2010, and we're excited to report the current findings of the project. What looks and feels like an ordinary sheet of paper with a fine layer of colored rectangles, is no ordinary piece of paper at all - once connected to a couple of wires, it instantly generates solar electricity. Additionally, the technology is almost as cheap and easy as printing a family snapshot from an inkjet printer. You can even fold it up, slip it in your pocket, then unfold it again for later use."
Synthetic kitty litter ingredient could have many other applications: "Cat litter might not seem like a particularly exotic substance, but it contains a mineral known as sepiolite, which is actually rather remarkable. Mined from only a few sources worldwide, sepiolite is a type of clay that absorbs 2.5 times its weight in water - that's more absorbent than any other known mineral, or any manmade material."
e-Genius flies into the record books, averages 100 mph over 211 miles: "Just a couple of weeks after its maiden flight at the end of May, the e-Genius electric aircraft has now winged its way into the record books - managing to stay aloft for over two hours and maintain an average speed of 100 mph (160 kph). Its University of Stuttgart development team are now looking to improve on that performance, ahead of the 2011 Green Flight Challenge for which it was designed."
Motorola Photon 4G gets price and release date: "When the Motorola Photon 4G debuts through Sprint later this month it will be Motorola's first WiMAX smartphone and Sprint's first international 4G smartphone that is capable of working on GSM networks around the world. Powered by a dual-core NVIDIA Tegra 2 processor with each core running at 1GHz, 1GB of RAM and with 16GB of built-in memory the device will come with Android 2.3 (Gingerbread) pre-installed."
LG outs DX2000 glasses-free 3D display with webcam-based eye-tracking: "Glasses-free 3D displays are getting larger with the LG Cinema 3D DX2000 20-inch computer display being the latest addition to the glasses-free 3D line of devices. The newest LG Cinema 3D display utilizes similar webcam-based eye-tracking technology as the latest glasses-free 3D gaming laptop, the Toshiba Qosmio F750, which is aimed at dealing with the common 'sweet spot' 3D technology issue."
HP TouchPad 4G to launch on AT&T: "HP has announced that the first connected version of its webOS tablet is to launch exclusively on AT&T's Mobile Broadband Network. Aimed at a mobile workforce and consumers who want multitasking on the move, the new HP TouchPad 4G will be treated to a processor boost, integrated GPS and come with 32GB of internal storage."
Wind turbine placement to optimize wind power generation for a given area: "Although wind power energy production in 2010 was estimated to be only about 2.5 percent of worldwide electricity usage, wind turbines are considered a mature technology with many experts suggesting that we're approaching the theoretical limit of individual wind turbine efficiency."
Wednesday, July 13, 2011
New sensor digitally captures complex guitar-playing movements: "For most of us, digitally capturing our six-string virtuosity involves plugging an axe into a guitar interface like Apogee's JAM and then launching some software on a laptop or mobile device."
Posted by steve at 9:21 AM
AME-LOT student housing is made entirely out of recycled pallets: "AME-LOT is a recent material reuse building plan from French architectural firm Malka, in which student housing is primarily made up of a variety of reused pallets which are added to an existing structure. The technique not only creates a striking architectural display, but also ensures that no existing building is destroyed, thus minimizing its carbon footprint."
Posted by steve at 9:20 AM
Caterpillar 5230B Excavator wooden model priced at US$35,900: "If you think that heavy construction machinery like a Caterpillar 5230B Excavator is an unlikely source of inspiration for a piece of art, then you obviously don't work for Michigan art studio Woodchuck and Co. The team there has built a highly detailed wooden model, or rather, a semi-working replica of the large machine, in 1/16th scale. The collector's piece is up for sale at US$35,900."
Posted by steve at 9:19 AM
Volvo testing concepts to extend range of electric vehicles by up to 1,000 km: "While there have been huge strides made in battery technology in recent times, the limited range of electric vehicles remains one of the main barriers to their general adoption. While maybe not an ideal solution, Volvo is producing a few electric test vehicles with range extenders - combustion engines that increase the effective range of the electric vehicle by effectively turning it into a hybrid. The project, which is supported by he Swedish Energy Agency and the EU, will test three different electric motor/combustion engine combinations."
Zoom H2n Handy Recorder boasts five microphones and Mid-Side recording: "Since its launch in 2007, the Zoom H2 Handy recorder with its ability to record high quality digital audio has become popular for everything from recording personal memos and band demos to sticking in the faces of politicians. Zoom has now given its portable 'studio on a stick' an update in the form of the H2n Handy Recorder that ups the number of microphones to five and, according to Zoom, is the first handheld recorder to offer Mid-Side recording."
Tuesday, July 12, 2011
Cheaper vehicle sensory system developed: "There are presently several in-car systems that use small cameras and sensors to alert drivers to dangers on the road, or even in their own driving habits. Some of these systems can be quite costly, and are therefore limited to use in fairly expensive automobiles. Now, however, a team of scientists from Germany's Fraunhofer Institute for Reliability and Microintegration have developed a new type of sensory system, that's cheap enough to produce that it could be used in economy vehicles."
Rollei Bullet HD actioncam shoots video, not ammo: "Before current technology allowed them to be available to the public, wearable POV (point-of-view) video cameras were known within the television industry as 'bullet cameras,' because of their shape. Nowadays, they come in all shapes, sizes and price ranges, and are generally called actioncams or helmetcams. Hearkening back to the days of yore, however, is Rollei's recently-released Bullet HD. With its aluminum body and rounded nose, it does indeed look like a big bullet ... or perhaps a small Thermos flask."
Billion-pixel camera to map the Milky Way: "At approximately one billion pixels, it's the largest digital camera ever built for a space mission. Over a five-year period, the 'billion-pixel array' will be used aboard the European Space Agency's Gaia spacecraft, to map upwards of a billion stars. While it will be focusing mainly on our own Milky Way galaxy, Gaia will also be mapping other celestial bodies, including galaxies and quasars near the edge of the observable universe."
Final space shuttle mission testing system to turn urine into a sports drink: "Atlantis may have taken off on the last ever space shuttle mission last week but that doesn't mean it has finished racking up firsts. Along with ferrying its last batch of supplies to the International Space Station (ISS), Atlantis is also carrying a urine recycling system that is designed to convert astronaut's urine into a sports drink. The Forward Osmosis Bag (FOB) system will reportedly be tested by one of the four-man crew towards the end of the shuttle's 12-day mission."
FireText Smoke Alarm texts you in the event of a fire: "Smoke alarms are great for alerting people that a fire has broken out so they can get out of harm's way and alert the authorities. But what happens if there's no one home when a fire breaks out."
Video: BMW evaluates electric E-Scooter: "BMW has flagged a possible intention to get into the electric motorcycle market with the airing of its E-Scooter concept bike. Designed from the ground up as an electric bike, the E-scooter uses its battery casing as a primary component of the frame."
Posted by steve at 9:13 AM
Monday, July 11, 2011
Kitchen gadget measures liquids, weighs solids in same container: "If you like to cook, and are just beginning the process of acquiring basic kitchen supplies, you're probably planning on getting a measuring cup and a kitchen scale. Should you need to maximize space, however, you can now get both devices in one unit. It's the Maxim 2 in 1 Jug and Scales, and it lets you measure both volume and weight."
Atlantis embarks on final shuttle mission: "Despite the possibility of delays due to weather, the space shuttle Atlantis successfully launched from Cape Canaveral, Florida on schedule this morning at 11:26 EDT. It is the final flight both for the Atlantis, and for NASA's 30-year shuttle program as a whole. The 12-day STS-135 mission will see four crew members traveling to the International Space Station (ISS) to deliver supplies."
Supercollar features built-in retractable leash: "The humble dog collar might seem like something that couldn't really be improved upon in any significant way, but ... what if you combined it with a leash? Well, what you'd end up with is the Supercollar. It's a polypropylene collar, with a three-foot (0.9-meter) retractable leash built into it. Perhaps not necessary in all situations, but there a few where it might come in handy."
Dairy-free ice cream developed for allergy sufferers and vegans: "While the researchers at Fraunhofer have been toiling away on all manner of important technologies, from electric vehicles and printable batteries to antibacterial film and water conservation technologies, it's good to see they've also turned some of their expertize towards the equally important task of bringing the joy of ice cream on a summer's day to those with a milk allergy or lactose intolerance."
The 231 mph Brabus Mercedes 800E - world's fastest and most powerful four-seat cabriolet: "Brabus specialises in building fast cars - very fast cars. Indeed, it already holds the record for building the world's fastest production sedan and the world's fastest production coupe, so in claiming the title of the world's fastest cabriolet, it's not that much of a surprise."
Posted by steve at 9:23 AM
Friday, July 8, 2011
Solar Ivy captures the sun's energy whilst creating a pleasing visual aesthetic: "Solar Ivy was inspired by traditional mansions, where ivy decorates the exterior walls and reflects the organic essence of nature. Created in collaboration with Brooklyn-based parent company SMIT, Solar Ivy is a series of solar cells printed with conductive ink that resemble ivy leaves."
Gemasolar Concentrated Solar Power achieves key milestone - 24 hours of uninterrupted supply: "The Gemasolar Concentrated Solar Power (CSP) plant near Seville, Spain, has achieved a full 24 hours of solar power production one month after starting commercial operation. The 19.9 MW plant uses a huge array of mirrors to heat a molten salt storage system in the central tower which is then used to run steam turbines, resulting in the ability to continue energy production after the sun goes down."
Posted by steve at 9:50 AM
Kinect-based system developed that recognizes what you're doing: "When and if we ever do get our personal robot assistants, it would be nice to think that we could 'be ourselves' in front of them, doing things such as scratching our butts or checking our deodorant - because they're just robots, right? They're not going to know what we're doing."
Posted by steve at 9:49 AM
Airbus and DLR testing fuel cell technology to cut aircraft pollution and noise emissions: "The goals of the Advisory Council for Aeronautics Research in Europe (ACARE) to reduce CO2 emissions by 50 percent, NOx emissions by 80 percent and noise cut by 50 percent by 2020 has seen aircraft manufacturers and airlines looking at alternative fuels such as biofuel."
Posted by steve at 9:48 AM
Scavenging ambient electromagnetic energy to power small electronic devices: "As you sit there reading this story you're surrounded by electromagnetic energy transmitted from sources such as radio and television transmitters, mobile phone networks and satellite communications systems. Researchers from the Georgia Institute of Technology have created a device that is able to scavenge this ambient energy so it can be used to power small electronic devices such as networks of wireless sensors, microprocessors and communications chips."
Posted by steve at 9:47 AM
Thursday, July 7, 2011
Toshiba Qosmio F750 glasses-free 3D laptop to arrive in August: "Toshiba has unveiled its first glasses-free 3D laptop - the Toshiba Qosmio F750-10Q. Powered by Intel Core i7 CPU, the laptop features a lenticular glasses-free 3D display, a full HD 15.6-inch screen and eye-tracking technology based on a HD web camera that maintains the 3D effect while the user moves. Both 2D and 3D content can be displayed simultaneously and the Qosmio F750 comes with a built-in Blu-ray XL drive capable of burning 128GB disks."
'The Muncher' turns organic waste into compost in less than an hour: "A number of cities around the world now sort their municipal trash, diverting organic matter into giant anaerobic composters that turn it into nutrient-rich soil. Such systems can be very expensive, however, and have a large physical footprint. The composting process can take as little as 14 days, or as long as one year."
Tiny, lens-free camera developed for scientific use: "It fits on the head of a pin, has no lens or moving parts, can be made for just a few cents, and yet it can take a photo of the Mona Lisa in which she's actually sort of recognizable ... it's called the Planar Fourier Capture Array (PFCA), and it's a tiny camera developed at New York's Cornell University. Although you might choose not to use it for photographing your child's birthday party, it could come in quite handy in the fields of science and technology."
Permanent spray-on antibacterial coating created: "A University of Georgia chemist has invented something that should be a boon to both hospital staff and athletes ... a permanent spray-on antibacterial polymer coating. It can be applied to natural and synthetic materials - just once - and even after repeated washings, will continue to kill a wide range of bacteria, yeasts and molds. In health care settings, it could be used on textiles such as lab coats, scrub suits, uniforms, gowns, gloves and linens, to protect patients from infections. It could also be used on athletic wear, along with shoes, socks, undergarments, and just about anything else that tends to get germy."
EYE 21 system lets the blind 'see' by assigning sounds to shapes: "Engineers from the Research Center for Graphic Technologies at Spain's Universitat Politècnica de València (UPV) have created an experimental system, that allows the blind to be aware of their surroundings through the use of sound."
Facebook gets Skype-powered video calling: "As expected, Facebook has announced Skype-powered video calling for its users, who now number more than 750 million according to the company. The new feature was unveiled by Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg and Skype CEO Tony Bates at a news conference at Facebook HQ on Wednesday where Facebook engineer Philip Su provided a walkthrough of the application."
Wednesday, July 6, 2011
Electrical implants could be used to treat depression: "The World Health Organization has projected that by 2020, major depression will be the second-most significant cause for disability in the world, after heart disease. Along with psychotherapy, the disorder is usually treated using antidepressant drugs. There is often a frustrating trial-and-error period involved in finding the right drug for the right person, however, while side effects can include obesity, sexual dysfunction, and fatigue ... to name a few."
Posted by steve at 9:54 AM
Gastric bacterium protects against asthma and proves hygiene hypothesis: "It's widely recognized that asthma rates have increased significantly since the 1960's and continue to rise. With increases in asthma and other allergic diseases centered on industrialized nations, a recent hypothesis suggested that the disappearance of specific microorganisms that populate the human body due to modern hygiene practices might be to blame."
Posted by steve at 9:52 AM
New ultraviolet laser technology could increase storage capacity of optical disc media: "Although ultraviolet semiconductor diode lasers are widely used in data processing, information storage and biology, their applications have been limited by the lasers' size, cost and power."
Feature-packed VEA Sportive training watch tells time, amongst other things: "Since their invention, watches have been gaining more and more functions. The time of day has been joined by such things as the day, date, month, year, alarms, stopwatches, moonphase, calculator, and even mobile phone capabilities."
Tuesday, July 5, 2011
Glasses convert headache-inducing 3D movies into glorious 2D: "Despite the current proliferation of 3D movies, cameras, televisions and mobile devices, there are those of us who still question whether 3D is here to stay, or if it's just a marketing gimmick that will eventually peter out. One thing's for sure: with current technology, the viewing of 3D movies gives some people headaches, or makes them feel dizzy. If you're one of those people, but you don't want to be left out when your friends go off to see My 3D Dinner With Andre, this might be just what you need - De-3D glasses."
Posted by steve at 12:42 PM
Construction of first-of-class Mobile Landing Platform gets underway: "The U.S. Navy has announced that construction has begun on the first of a new class of ship known as the Mobile Landing Platform (MLP). The MLP is designed to serve as a transfer point between large ships and small landing craft and act as a floating base for amphibious operations to allow for equipment and cargo to be delivered from ship to shore when there are no friendly bases available."
Plastic2Oil process turns plastic waste into fuel: "While a lot of people may be doing their part for the environment by sending their discarded plastic items off for recycling, the fact is that much of the plastic currently in use is non-recyclable. In a not particularly eco-friendly process, some of this plastic is burned to generate electricity, while much of it simply ends up in landfills. Canadian company JBI, however, has developed a process that uses those plastics as a feedstock, and turns them into fuel."
Kawasaki 2012 KX450F the first with launch control: "The easiest place to pass everyone else on a motocross circuit is in the run to the first corner and should you grab the hole-shot, the race is yours to lose. All of which makes Kawasaki's latest addition to its 2012 KX450F a killer app for a race bike - it will be the ONLY bike on the grid in 2011/12 with 'Launch Control.'"
BMW set to pioneer intelligent active motorcycle suspension: "The trouble with setting up the suspension on a motorcycle is that you're constantly compromising. If you want a nice firm ride that's suitable for hard cornering on fast, smooth roads, you're sacrificing comfort on the highway and optimal roadholding on a bumpy surface."
Monday, July 4, 2011
Adastra one-off luxury trimaran is in the works: "Some readers may remember the incredible-looking biodiesel-powered Earthrace trimaran. Originally designed to circumnavigate the world, it ended up being donated to the Sea Shepherd Society, and was promptly rammed and sunk by a Japanese whaling ship. Well, while we may no longer have it to gawk at, a one-off watercraft that could almost be considered its gigantic, luxurious sibling is currently being constructed in China. Behold, the Adastra."
Posted by steve at 10:14 AM
Virgin America and Google offer Chromebook 'test flights': "In an effort to educate the masses about its new portable computing platform, Google has struck a deal with Virgin America that will see Chromebooks trialled by passengers on selected flights in the U.S."
Realistic robotic helps dental students hone their skills: "Showa Hanako 2 is said to be a more user friendly and functional replacement to Showa Hanako 1, which was presented in March 2010. 'Love doll' maker Orient Industry is responsible for the silicone skin (this replaces the PVC skin of the previous model) and mouth lining, which increases the realistic feel and prevents water from getting into the machinery."
Seeds inspire new artificial anti-fouling surface: "With marine biofouling on ship hulls increasing drag, which results in an increase in fuel consumption and therefore cost and pollution, the search has been on for a way to prevent fouling that is better than the environmentally damaging, toxic marine paints currently used. Taking inspiration from floating seeds, scientists from the Biomimetics-Innovation-Centre (B-I-C) in Germany have developed a promising new anti-fouling surface that is toxin-free."
Posted by steve at 10:12 AM
Toyota confirms 2012 U.S. launch for all-electric Scion iQ: "At its annual U.S. national dealer meeting held in Las Vegas at the end of June, Toyota confirmed the launch dates for its Prius family are still on track despite complications arising following the disasters that hit Japan on March 11, saying production is expected to return to normal levels in Japan after July"
Posted by steve at 10:11 AM
Antonov's 3-speed transmission for electric vehicles boosts efficiency by 15 percent: "Electric vehicles have been a reality for more than 100 years, but it's only in the last decade or so that the world has truly woken up to their potential as a viable, cleaner urban transport alternative to their combustion engined cousins. During this EV renaissance much of the focus has been on developing improved power sources like batteries and fuel cells in order to deliver the range and performance consumers have become accustomed to during the age of oil."
Sunday, July 3, 2011
Optical system combines replaceable safety glasses with users' presciption lenses: "Those of us who need to wear glasses face a bit of a quandary when it comes to protective eyewear. We can put big safety glasses on over top of our prescription glasses, although these can be bulky, uncomfortable, and a little funny-looking."
Posted by steve at 12:07 PM
Launch of world’s first EV racing series moves to U.S.: "Billed as world's first race series exclusively for zero-emission electric cars, the EV Cup was originally scheduled to kick off its inaugural season in the U.K. at Silverstone on August 6, 2011. It has now been delayed and will start out in the U.S. with two race events in California at Laguna Seca in November and Auto Club Speedway in December, ahead of a full series launch in 2012."
Thorium: A safer alternative for nuclear power generation?: "The world's growing need for energy, the limits of our supply of fossil fuels and concern about the effects of carbon emissions on the environment have all prompted interest in the increased use of nuclear power."
Not your average Hobbit hole: Make Architects' zero carbon underground house: "There's more to environmentally-friendly architecture than solar-panels and thermal mass, it's also about designing buildings that are not at-odds with their surroundings - particularly if the building is in the middle of a picturesque landscape."
Posted by steve at 12:02 PM
Solar cell-embroidered handbag blends fashion and function: "With a mobile phone now an essential item in any ladies' handbag, it's surprising that most of the solar powered bags we've seen up until now have been either backpacks or messenger bags."
Saturday, July 2, 2011
WOW-Keys allows desktop keyboard and iPhone to pool their resources: "An iPhone has various input features that a standard desktop keyboard doesn't, such as a reconfigurable touchscreen display. A full-sized keyboard, however, is much easier to type on than an iPhone. Perhaps it only makes sense, therefore, that Korea's Omnio Technologies decided to combine the strengths of the two devices, in the form of its WOW-Keys keyboard with built-in iPhone dock."
Geniatech unveils Android-embedded set-top system for HDTV: "Google TV has not received quite the warm welcome that was hoped for, in spite of sterling efforts from Logitech, Sony and Boxee. While the search giant makes upgrades to the service for Android 3.1 and readies it for Android Market, Geniatech is offering what it says is the first Android-embedded set-top system for HDTVs."
Student-designed device to fight battlefield hypothermia: "For U.S. troops, the most common type of battlefield fatality involves blood loss due to trauma. When a soldier does experience blood loss, their chance of survival drops by 22.5 percent once hypothermia sets in. Needless to say, if that reaction can be minimized or delayed, then less fatalities should occur. A team of biomedical engineering students from New Jersey's Stevens Institute of Technology is working towards that goal, by developing a blood-warming system device known as Heat Wave."
Posted by steve at 2:33 PM
Bose combines TV and home theater with VideoWave Entertainment System: "According to Bose, only one third of homes in the U.S. have a home theater system, leaving the majority relying on the decidedly average speakers built into many TVs. While the major TV manufacturers generally try to market their products in terms of picture quality - be it blacker blacks, 3D capabilities or the latest and greatest image processing engine - audio performance seems to take a back seat."
Posted by steve at 2:32 PM
Military tested, ultra rugged wearable computer system gets commercial release: "Military computer manufacturer Black Diamond Advanced Technology has released its ultra-rugged wearable PC and communications kit as a commercial-off-the-shelf (COTS) system. Adaptable to a range of specialist missions, the Modular Tactical System (MTS) system is - as the name suggests - not just a pack containing a computer."
Posted by steve at 2:31 PM
‘Guide vest’ to act as eyes for the visually impaired: "We've looked at a number of efforts to extend the capabilities of the traditional white cane for the visually impaired, such as using ultrasonic echoes or lasers to give users a better lay of the land."
Posted by steve at 2:30 PM
Friday, July 1, 2011
EU project looks to the future of personal air transport: "A European Union project known as myCopter has set aside funds of €4.2 million (US$6.2m) to investigate the possibility of introducing Personal Aerial Vehicles (PAVs) into the skyways of many congested European cities."
Pic3D sheet transforms any screen into a glasses-free 3D display: "It seems that those of us who haven't bought a glasses-free 3D gadget yet may have the opportunity to try one anyway. Announced at the Virtual Reality Exhibition in Tokyo, Pic3D is a thin sheet of transparent film, which enables a glasses-free 3D effect after being applied to any screen."
LiquidText software designed for active reading: "The more ways in which you can engage yourself with what you're reading, the more likely you are to understand and remember it. It's a practice known as active reading, and it can involve taking notes, highlighting passages, setting aside snippets of important information, or even reading text aloud."
Folding, retractable steering wheel could make tiny cars roomier: "As small, ultra fuel-efficient or electric cars become more popular as urban runabouts, automotive designers are looking for more ways to maximize their interior space. One possibility: get rid of the steering wheel. Of course, you need a steering wheel for driving, but the engineers at Michigan's TRW Automotive are working on one that folds up and retracts into the dashboard when the vehicle is parked."
SoloTrek developers planning two seat electric hybrid Air Car: "If you've ever watched your Parrot AR Drone power through the air and wondered what it would be like to be inside such a craft, the announcement of the Air Car project could be the answer you are looking for. The folks behind the development of the SoloTrek/Springtail Exoskeleton Flying Vehicle have revealed plans to create the world's first fuel-electric hybrid flying car."
Posted by steve at 9:14 AM