New and Emerging Technology News part 143 ~ NEW GEN TECH LIFE : new generation technology news

Saturday, 1 February 2014

New and Emerging Technology News part 143

The paragliding motor trike concept by Zvezdan Nedeljkovic
It seems like such a simple concept, something Q might whip up for 007 in the next Bond flick: hook a recumbent electric motorcycle up to a paraglider, drive it off a cliff and see what happens. That's the thinking behind this offering from Serbian designer Zvezdan Nedeljkovic, and while the idea of attaching vehicles to parasails is far from new, there's something about Nedeljkovic's concept design that captures the imagination.  Read More
With a new aluminum bodyshell the Mercedes SL is lighter than its predecessors
Mercedez-Benz has managed to significantly reduce the weight of its upcoming SL (sporty, lightweight) Roadster, thanks in large part to a new 89 percent aluminum bodyshell that, at 254 kg (559.9 lb), is 110 kg (242.5 lb) lighter than a comparable bodyshell. The new bodyshell structure also enables a new "FrontBass" system, which will make its world premiere in the SL series, that Mercedes claims delivers "concert hall" sound with the roof up or down. Another feature making its debut is the MAGIC VISION CONTROL wiper/washer system that cleans the windscreen without the splash of road-obscuring water seen in traditional systems.  Read More
Harvard University has licensed the technology for its tiny Kilobots, enabling other group...
Do you think that you’ll never be able to afford a robot of your own that isn’t a toy? Well, if you can get Swiss robot-maker K-Team Corporation to sell you one, chances are you can easily afford a Kilobot – perhaps even a whole bunch of them. Designed and first built by Harvard University’s Self-Organizing Systems Research Group, the three-legged robots aren’t much larger than the 3.4-volt button cell batteries that power them, and move by vibrating across smooth, flat surfaces. They were created to study robotic swarming behavior, with the intention that tens, hundreds or even thousands of them could be used simultaneously in one experiment. Harvard has just announced that it has licensed the Kilobot technology to K-Team, which will commercially manufacture the robots so that other groups and institutions can purchase them for their own research.  Read More
Ducati's 1199 Panigale
A formula one car, at 640 kg and about 800 horsepower, has a power-to-weight ratio around 1.25 horsepower per kilogram. The new 1199 Panigale, with 195 horsepower and 164 kg, has a ratio of 1.19 horsepower per kilogram. Granted, that figure changes significantly if you add my porky badonkadonk and a full tank to the equation ... but regardless, this roaring L-twin beast is not only the new power-to-weight champion of the production motorcycle world, it's a ground-up reinvention of the Ducati superbike that has reportedly been in development since the venerable 1098 first hit showroom floors in 2007. Even without factory support, the 1198 won this year's World Superbike championship ... and absolutely everything about the Panigale looks significantly better, including Troy Bayliss' lap times. Let's take a closer look at what is easily the most desirable supersports bike of 2012.  Read More
TASCAM has just released its new iM2 Stereo Microphone for iPad, iPhone and iPod touch
With the various aftermarket lenses that have become available for the iPhone recently, it’s easy to forget that the smartphone is capable of recording not only video, but also audio. Should you not want to be limited by its single bottom-mounted condenser mic, however, what choices are there? Well, you can play reporter and get a handheld condenser, or as of this Monday, you can now pick up TASCAM’s iM2 Stereo Microphone for iPad, iPhone and iPod touch.  Read More
Scientists have discovered that objects coated with a forest of carbon nanotubes can be ma...
Although Klingon-style disappearing spaceships may not be in our neighborhood any time soon, the technology that could allow a spaceship to vanish from sight may be here now. Scientists from the University of Michigan have successfully made a three-dimensional etched silicon image of a tank appear as a featureless black void, that completely blended in with the backdrop surrounding it. The secret: good ol’ carbon nanotubes.  Read More
The twin lens kit camera shoots 35mm film (Image: Photojojo)
Back in the days before digital cameras and printers, many do-it-yourselfers liked to develop and print their own photos. While those days of darkrooms, chemicals and papers haven't completely given over to CMOS sensors and printers just yet, nuts and bolts photographers still have to work a bit harder to get their hands dirty, so to speak. Now, camera gadget site Photojojo offers one way to stay "retro," by offering a very affordable build-it-yourself twin lens camera kit that shoots honest to gosh 35mm film. Best of all, even though it looks like a toy, its plastic lens actually captures fairly decent (read "lo-fi dreamy") photos. The small amount of vignetting and lens flare is thrown in for free!  Read More
Scientists have created a contact lens that can can project an image onto the wearer's ret...
Fans of the original film in the Terminator franchise will recall how various bits of data were shown to be overlaid on the cyborg's vision - in particular, they might remember the list of possible responses that could be used when someone was angrily knocking on its door (for those who don't remember, its chosen response wasn't very polite). Such augmented vision systems are now a little closer to reality, thanks to work being done by a team of scientists at the University of Washington and Aalto University, in Finland. They have created a contact lens that displays information, which is visible to the wearer.  Read More
EnviroTech recently revealed its production-ready Lightning electric hot rod at a press la...
While modifying cars for fast acceleration over a short distance is said to date back to the 1930s, many will associate the rise of the American hot rod with the James Dean era of the 1950s. Nowadays, rodding has gone global, with hundreds of enthusiast gatherings organized every year by clubs and associations so that members can proudly show off their creations. Given this popularity and the recent upsurge in electric car development, it's hardly surprising that the two have been brought together in the shape of the Lightning electric car from EnviroTech.  Read More
Microsoft has confirmed new Kinect for Windows hardware with optimized hardware components...
Earlier this month Microsoft announced the Kinect for Windows Commercial Program that will give businesses “the tools to develop applications that not only could improve their own operations, but potentially revolutionize entire industries.” Following this announcement many wondered whether there would also be new PC-centric Kinect hardware in the offing. The company has now answered in the affirmative with confirmation that a new Kinect device with optimized hardware components and numerous firmware adjustments tailored for close up PC-user scenarios is on the way.  Read More

Is Spotify fair to artists?
It's been a week of intense speculation as to the role and future of Spotify within the music industry. On Wednesday of last week the UK-based distributor STHoldings put out a strongly-worded statement (apparently since withdrawn) announcing its decision to pull the catalogues of 238 record labels from the service, as well as from Napster, Rdio and Simfy. The statement reignited the debate as to the role of Spotify and similar subscription-based services within the music industry, and it's a debate that hinges on what Spotify is, or, more crucially, what it replaces.  Read More
Instant Wild is a conservation app that sends photos of wild animals to users' iPhones, as...
Why do ecotourists travel thousands of miles to catch glimpses of rare, exotic animals, when they could get long, lingering looks at them just by turning on their TV? Well, partly because it’s fun to travel. Also, however, it’s a lot more exciting when you never know what you’re going to see, or when, or where. While it’s not quite as epic as trekking through the African Savannah, the Zoological Society of London’s Instant Wild App is bringing that same sort of wilderness-lottery-like excitement to the iPhone. Users can subscribe to feeds from camera traps located in several areas of the world, and will receive photos of the animals that trigger those traps, as they’re triggered. While that might be neat enough in and of itself, users can then proceed to help conservationists protect those creatures.  Read More
The DeLorme inReach can be paired via Bluetooth to an Android device, for added functional...
Whether they involve hiking, paddling, pedaling or climbing, multi-day backcountry wilderness trips can be very rewarding. For some of us, however, there’s always that one worry – what if something happens and no one knows where to find us? A cell phone likely won’t do much good, as coverage isn’t available across about 90 percent of the planet. A satellite phone would do the trick, but they tend to be quite expensive. That’s where DeLorme’s new inReach device comes into play ... just think of it as a satellite-enabled panic button.  Read More
The AAXA P4 Pico Projector offers 80 lumens of brightness, 75 minutes of battery life and ...
Handheld projectors can be very useful devices when you need to project a large image on-the-go, but many of them lack enough brightness, resolution and battery life. California-based company AAXA Technologies has rolled out its P4 Pico Projector with the aim of addressing some of these issues - it offers 80 lumens of brightness, 75 minutes of battery life and can handle 720p videos.  Read More
LEAP modules are built entirely off-site, ready to be transported by helicopter to the sum...
This stunning alpine modular lodge is the creation of Italian design firm LEAPfactory. Dubbed LEAP (living ecological alpine pod) the modules are built entirely off-site, ready to be transported by helicopter to the summit of choice. Breaking away from traditional alpine structures, the pod is fitted with high-tech features and "at the end of its life cycle [it] can be lifted away by helicopter without leaving any permanent trace of its presence in the natural environment" says LEAPfactory.  Read More
Lenovo has announced the tiny IdeaCentre Q180 desktop PC with Windows 7 onboard, powered b...
Lenovo has unleashed a new device which falls into the HTPC or nettop PC category - the Windows 7-based IdeaCentre Q180. The book-sized computer will fit easily alongside any television set, where it can serve as an entertainment hub, given that it handles 1080p videos and optionally supports Blu-ray videos in 3D.  Read More
The Iguana 29 Amphibious (Photo: Eric Sander)
The Iguana 29 is a new take on amphibious vehicles, using retractable caterpillar tracks to deliver surefooted drive across extreme terrain at up to 8 km/h while on water it is quick to plane and has 35 knot speed. Most impressive of all is that the hybrid version of the Iguana can run in electric only mode in nature's most delicate areas. The Iguana 29 and its retractable caterpillar design looks to address an important need for boats capable of entering and exiting the water in complete independence. The Iguana has enough carrying capacity to be very versatile and could serve as tender, to land anywhere, as a leisure craft offering freedom from marinas, berths and other constraints, or for transporting goods and equipment. Larger versions of the currently ten-seater amphibian are planned.  Read More
The Colorfly Pocket Hi-Fi C4 pro is the first portable player capable of handling 24-bit/1...
The modern smartphone has quickly become an essential part of modern living. It's a powerful portable computer, a high resolution camera, and a mobile communications center. However, if you're of the school who thinks that just because such a device can also play music, there's no need to spend good money on a separate audio player - the Colorfly Pocket Hi-Fi C4 pro may well be the dedicated music player to change your mind. Hidden within a gorgeous walnut outer shell with hand-carved motif and controlled by deliciously old-school physical buttons and sliding volume pot, the black circuit board heart of this music player is home to some top notch tech with one purpose - to deliver audiophile-pleasing, Hi-Fi-quality audio.  Read More
The clear strip of fibreglass on the tank enabled instant assessment of fuel on board
Just four decades ago, Ducati was known for its outdated desmodromic singles and little else. On April 23, 1972, Paul Smart and Bruno Spaggiari debuted Ducati's new desmodromic 750 v-twin with a 1-2 victory at the Imola 200 Mile Race. They beat Giacomo Agostini's MV Agusta, plus the best that Honda, Kawasaki, Suzuki, Triumph, BSA, Laverda and Moto Guzzi could offer. The famous victory set Ducati on a course that saw its big desmo V-twins dominating superbike racing for four decades. The official factory reserve bike from Ducatis most famous moment is coming up for auction, with bidding expected to finish beyond EUR150,000.  Read More
An insect fitted with a piezoelectric generator to harness energy from the insect's wings ...
Insects have served as the inspiration for a number of Micro Air Vehicles (MAVs) that could be deployed to monitor hazardous situations without putting humans in harm’s way. Now researchers at the University of Michigan College of Engineering are proposing using actual live insects enhanced with electronic sensors to achieve the same result. The insect cyborgs would use biological energy harvested from their body heat or movements to potentially power small sensors implanted on their bodies in order to gather vital information from hazardous environments.  Read More
 
The Protexo is a device that blows cool air on asthma sufferers as they sleep, to keep all...
Asthmatics have it hard enough when they’re awake, having to periodically use their inhalers, or remove themselves from situations that could trigger an attack. For some of them, however, their symptoms get even worse when they go to bed, preventing them from getting a good night’s sleep. Airsonett, a Swedish medical tech company, is attempting make life easier for those people. It has created a device called the Protexo, which it claims should be of great assistance to night-time asthma sufferers.  Read More
The Hidden Radio And Bluetooth Speaker is a very simple canister-shaped Bluetooth speaker ...
Bluetooth speakers are not particularly complex devices in terms of operation - you just pair them with a Bluetooth-enabled device, adjust the volume and enjoy the sound. However, a duo of industrial designers have created the Hidden Radio And Bluetooth Speaker in an attempt to make it even simpler and more intuitive. The unit is also claimed to offer an impressive 30 hours of battery life.  Read More
Pingtan is planned to be transformed into a new commercial hub between China and Taiwan (i...
International architectural firm 10 Design has recently won the opportunity to master plan a 93-hectare (230-acre) waterfront central business district as part of a new development for Pingtan in China. Pingtan, being the closest Chinese island to Taiwan, is to be transformed into a new commercial hub in an effort to attract trade between the two sides of the Straits.  Read More
CompuLab's low power fit-PC3 compact computer has been redesigned and updated, and is now ...
CompuLab has taken the time between announcing its fit-PC3 back in January and actually releasing it to give the low power, fanless mini computer a bit of a redesign. There's more processing and graphics power on offer, support for more memory, two casing designs and something the company has called the FACE Module, which alters the system's I/O capabilities to suit different needs.  Read More
U.S. deploys the Switchblade Kamikaze Drone
The Switchblade is a new form of miniature unmanned aerial system (UAS) which is man-packable and offers a loitering, silent, almost invisible, over-the-horizon aerial presence for intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance duties. It also carries a warhead, so if a target of opportunity presents itself, the Switchblade has imaging sensors capable of identifying, tracking and guiding itself right to that person before exploding - with the aim of causing minimal collateral damage. The UAS is currently being readied for initial deployment by U.S.Forces in Iraq and Afghanistan.  Read More
An Air France Airbus A380. Air France is one of the ten safest airlines this year, accordi...
A recent system of ranking commercial airlines devised by the Air Transport Rating Agency (ATRA), and based largely on safety criteria, radically overhauls the perceived order of airline superiority. In fact, a grand total of none of the ten best airlines according to the 2011 Skytrax awards, which reflect customer service, feature in ATRA's safety top ten.  Read More
Mazda claims its new i-ELOOP system is the first passenger vehicle regenerative braking sy...
While Toyota took out the Tokachi 24-Hour Race in 2007 with a Supra HV-R hybrid race car featuring a quick-charging supercapacitor-based regenerative braking system, battery storage has so far been the norm for these systems in production vehicles. Now Mazda is charging things up with its new "i-ELOOP" system intended for internal combustion engine-powered vehicles. The i-ELOOP is billed as the world's first passenger vehicle regenerative braking system that uses a capacitor in place of rechargeable batteries to temporarily store energy captured from braking.  Read More
ExoPC has posted a video of its new 40-inch multi-touch desk on YouTube
Could multitouch desks be the wave of the future? ExoPC thinks so, and has posted a video of its new 40-inch multi-touch desk on YouTube - a desk it plans on officially announcing at the Consumer Electronics Show at the beginning of January.  Read More
A new electrode developed at Stanford University could enable batteries that are big and e...
There's no doubt that sources of renewable energy such as wind and solar are critical to a clean energy future, but just as important is a way to store the energy generated for use when the sun isn't shining and the wind isn't blowing. Researchers at Stanford University are reporting the development of a new high-power electrode that is so cheap, durable and efficient that it could enable the creation of batteries that are big enough and economical enough for large-scale storage of renewable energy on the grid.  Read More
An image of the new computer chip, that mimics the activity of neurons in the brain (Photo...
The human brain contains approximately 100 billion neurons, and each one of those communicates with many others by releasing neurotransmitters. Those neurotransmitters cross a gap – properly known as a synapse – between the sending (presynaptic) and receiving (postsynaptic) neurons. Ion channels on the membranes of the postsynaptic neurons open or close in response to the arrival of the neurotransmitters, changing the neurons’ electrical potential. Should that potential change to a sufficient degree, the neuron will produce an electrical impulse known as an action potential. It’s a very complex process ... and scientists from MIT have now recreated it on a silicon computer chip.  Read More

Emulator DVS system
While traditional mixing desks can bury DJs behind bulky equipment in a dimly lit corner of the club, this transparent, 46-inch multi-touch system from software development company Smithson Martin puts the person spinning the discs - or in this case the touch display - front and center.  Read More
Laboratory grown meat is on the way, but don't expect it to look like this - currently the...
How much would you pay for a hamburger? How about US$345,000? No, it's not wrapped in edible gold leaf and held together with a skewer made out of a diamond stick pin that you get to keep. It's an ordinary burger that doesn't include the bun, lettuce, pickles or onions. It isn't even super-sized. This may seem like price gouging on a monumental scale, but it's actually the cost price for this particular burger. That's because even though it is a real hamburger made from real meat, it doesn't come from a cow at all. So where is all this heading? David Szondy investigates the past, present and future of lab-grown meat.  Read More
The Philips bio-light is 'powered' by glowing bioluminescent bacteria
The search for greener, more power-efficient lighting systems won't stop with compact fluorescents and LED systems if Dutch electronics giant Philips has anything to say about it. In an effort to embrace a truly natural approach to lighting, the company took a cue from fireflies and deep-sea creatures to create a (literally) green light powered not by electricity or sunlight, but by glowing bioluminescent bacteria.  Read More
Printrbot aims to be the smallest and the simplest to construct 3D printer on the market
Since I was a small child, I've always wished that I had a machine that could produce anything I wanted at my command. Every once in a while, technology aligns with childhood wishes and you get magical products as a result. The Printrbot is one such concept. While 3D printers aren't new, the Printrbot aims to be the smallest and the simplest to construct on the market.  Read More
An Atlas V rocket bearing the Mars Science Laboratory and Curiosity rover launches at 10:0...
On Saturday at 10:02 a.m. EST an Atlas V rocket carrying its precious cargo, the Mars Science Laboratory and Curiosity rover, took off successfully from Space Launch Complex 41 at Cape Canaveral. A statement from NASA Project Manager Peter Theisinger confirmed that all had gone according to plan. "The spacecraft is in communication, thermally stable and power positive," he said. "We're on our way to Mars".  Read More
Toyota's GT 86
Toyota will be officially showing its GT 86 sports car in Tokyo, after several years of concept cars and redesigns and extensive collaboration with Subaru, which will sell an almost identical car. The compact 2+2 sports car is an incredibly important release from the world's largest auto manufacturer, which is hoping to bolster its reputation by creating a superb handling, driver-focused, low center of gravity, beautifully balanced with excellent power-to-weight ratio. The front-mounted 197bhp Subaru 2.0-litre flat-four has rear wheel drive, goes on sale mid-2012 and is expected to sell below GBP30,000 in the UK to "those for whom driving is a passion, not a necessity."  Read More
Autonomo 2030 Concept by Charles Rattray (Image: Charles Rattray)
Charles Rattray’s vision of what the automotive industry will be capable of by the year 2030 is far more feasible that it may seem at first glance. Autonomo, his fully autonomous vehicle concept, certainly looks the part, but should not be dismissed as just another flashy concept car. As car makers worldwide gear up to face the enormous challenges posed by congestion, pollution, and infrastructural deficiencies, Rattray’s final year student project offers a glimpse into the world where these challenges are already a thing of the past. Inspired by biomimicry, sustainability, artificial intelligence and information technology in general, the concept draws on technologies that are already being developed in R&D centers around the world.  Read More
The graphene foam is macroscopic in total size (left), yet has nanoscopic internal structu...
For some time now, scientists have known that certain nanostructures are very sensitive to the presence of various chemicals and gases, making them good candidates for use in explosives-detecting devices. Unfortunately, because they're so small, mounting a single nanostructure within such a device would be an extremely fiddly and costly process. They would also be quite fragile, plus it would be difficult to clean the detected gas from them, so they could be reused. Recently, however, scientists from New York's Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute have figured out a solution to those problems. They have created a postage stamp-sized piece of foam made from one continuous piece of graphene, that is easy to manipulate, flexible, rugged, simple to neutralize after each use ... and is ten times more sensitive than traditional polymer sensors.  Read More
The BoardX motherboard includes a main port, two add-on ports, USB & DC power inputs and a...
Something of a prospective big stepbrother to Arduino, BoardX is a new DIY electronics kit dreamt up by robotics enthusiast turned entrepreneur, Kevin Green. Like Arduino, BoardX is a customizable and expandable motherboard that forms a base, schematically and structurally, to whatever electronics wizardry the end user has in mind. What separates BoardX from Arduino is its larger physical size, greater current-carrying capacity, and the fact that the board does not come with an integrated processor. Users must select their own.  Read More
Ant-Roach is a six-legged 'pneubot,' designed to showcase the capabilities of inflatable r...
What weighs a little under 70 pounds, has six legs, and is full of air? No, it's not conjoined monkey triplets with gas - as you've doubtless already gathered from the picture, it's a walking inflatable robot known as Ant-Roach. Earning its name by looking like a cross between an anteater and a cockroach, the wonderfully-kooky beast is the creation of San Francisco-based engineering/design group Otherlab. Besides providing amusement, the device was built to showcase the high strength-to-weight ratios and carrying capacities that are possible with inflatable robots.  Read More

DisplAir lets users manipulate images in mid-air
Finnish company FogScreen has been wowing attendees at major events, trade shows and conventions and giving advertisers another way to capture our attention for over five years now with its FogScreen technology - a display system that projects images onto a curtain of fog so they appear to float in the air. Now Russian company DisplAir has added some interactivity to the technology by giving it multi-touch capabilities that allows users to manipulate projected images in mid-air.  Read More
Compare... - the Diaspora stream forms the hub for its users.
We've been keeping one eye on aspirational social network Diaspora since its inception, and now that it's rolling out the invitations ahead of its forthcoming Beta, and having apparently addressed the security issues of the past, we took the Alpha for a spin. The first thing that strikes you is just how much the user interface resembles that of Google+, from its three-column layout, down to the specific content of those columns and more besides. But given the gradual rollout of the Diaspora Alpha it may not be immediately clear to new users just who is mimicking whom.  Read More
Star Syringes' K1 Auto Disposable syringe can only be used once, to reduce the spread of d...
In these days of reducing, reusing and recycling, it may seem strange that anyone would be going out of their way to make a potentially reusable product disposable. It all makes sense, however, when that product is a syringe. According to the World Health Organization, every year approximately 1.3 million people die worldwide, due to diseases contracted through the reuse of syringes. Part of this can be chalked up to needle-sharing by users of illicit intravenous drugs, but much of it is due to health care workers (particularly those with little training or in impoverished conditions) using the same syringe to inoculate multiple patients. If a syringe simply ceases to function after one use, however, reusing it is impossible. That’s the idea behind Star Syringes’ K1 Auto Disposable syringe.  Read More
The Windowfarms project has developed a new version of its indoor gardening system - where...
Whereas the majority of vertical farming concepts and projects featured in Gizmag over the years have either been huge dedicated structures or add-ons to existing buildings, the Windowfarms system downsizes and personalizes veggie growing by placing an indoor farm in the window. The original plastic-bottle-based, do-it-yourself hydroponics system design has been available for a while now but the developers are getting ready to make a new, improved kit version available.  Read More
Captive Media is a urinal-based video game service, where male users control the game play...
As any barkeep will tell you, the bar/pub industry is a very competitive one, with business owners taking every opportunity they can to attract clientele to their establishments. If the usual approaches such as cheap drinks aren't doing enough on their own, however, now there's something else that may help draw the customers in ... or at least, into the men's washroom. It's called Captive Media, and it consists of urinal-mounted video game systems, where men control the gameplay by changing the trajectory of their urine stream from side to side. Hey, whatever it takes to make your watering hole Number 1, right?  Read More
Norwegian scientists are developing a capsule that they say will be able to transmit live ...
Although we may not yet have reached the stage where manned submarines can be shrunken down and placed inside the body, à la the movie Fantastic Voyage, current technology does allow us to do something almost as impressive – it is now possible to obtain images of the inside of the intestinal tract, by getting patients to swallow a camera-equipped capsule. Japanese company RF System Lab reported success using its Norika 3 RF Endoscopic Robot Capsule to transmit live video from inside test subjects back in 2004, while just last year Olympus announced the creation of a similar device. Now, Norwegian researchers are stating that they are in the process of developing the “next generation” of camera pill.  Read More
France's FRAC Center will be hosting an exhibition to be built entirely by flying robots (...
The FRAC Centre in Orléans, France will for the first time host an exhibition to be built entirely by flying robots. Titled "Flight Assembled Architecture," the six meter-high tower will be made up of 1,500 prefabricated polystyrene foam modules. The exhibition has been developed by Swiss architect Gramazio & Kohler and Italian robot designer Raffaello D'Andrea, to inspire new methods of thinking about architecture as a "physical process of dynamic formation."  Read More
Aprilia's SRV850
The scooter and motorcycle are morphing into a new class of two-wheeled machine, with the power, acceleration, braking and roadholding of the motorcycle, and carrying capacity, weather protection, comfort, safety and ease-of-use of the scooter. The SRV 850 is Aprilia's performance version of the Gilera GP800, which was already the world's fastest and most powerful scooter. It is now a red-blooded Italian V-twin sports bike with a CVT (no gears) and the acceleration to smoke a Bugatti Veyron at legal speeds. With Honda's Integra due to be unveiled in Tokyo, and new entries from BMW, the superscooter class is burgeoning in response to the need for this new class of super commuter.  Read More
Patelo inserts a tiny piston into his miniature V12 engine
Anyone who appreciates the precision art of engine design ought to get a kick out of this offering from a Spanish engineer named Patelo. Starting with hunks of aluminum, bronze and stainless steel, he spent over 1200 hours designing, milling, turning and drilling what he claims is "probably" the world's smallest V12 engine. Powered by compressed air injection (0.1kg/sq cm), this little marvel boasts a total displacement of 12 cubic centimeters from its twelve 11.3 mm diameter pistons and works like a charm. Best of all, you can see it come together in the detailed video that follows.  Read More
Prototype of the hook and release IRB system on a Motorcrossboard
Andy Keel, the man behind the Motorcrossboard, has developed a new binding system to minimize the risk of injury for not only riders of his company’s vehicles, which he describes as essentially stand-on light motorcycles, but for participants in a range of boardsports. The intuitive release binding (IRB) system, which is designed for any boardsport that sees the rider connected securely to the board, features a binding that allows the rider to separate themselves from the board at will by releasing their grip on a handheld control.  Read More

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