New and Emerging Technology News part 196 ~ NEW GEN TECH LIFE : new generation technology news

Tuesday, 11 February 2014

New and Emerging Technology News part 196

Researchers have developed a system that uses a pressure wave to reliably and rapidly loca...
Tracking down the source of a leak in water pipes can be a tricky business. Current techniques rely on acoustic sensing with microphones often used to identify noise resulting from pressurized water escaping the pipe. In plastic pipes in particular, that noise can fall away quickly, making leak detection difficult and time consuming. Researchers at the University of Sheffield claim to have developed a much more accurate system that locates leaks by sending a pressure wave along the pipe that sends back a signal if it passes any anomalies in the pipe’s surface.  Read More
The Morpheus Lander just after ignition (Photo: NASA/Project Morpheus) While the spotlight this month has been firmly on Curiosity's rendezvous with the Red Planet, NASA has also been showcasing some of the technology we can expect to see on future missions in the form of the Morpheus Lander.  Read More
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Swumanoid is designed to reproduce a human swimmer's movements (Image: Tokyo Institute of ...
With the swimming program of the London Olympics now completed and medals awarded, many will now be casting their attention to Rio in 2016 and how competitors can be helped to swim faster, how they can be made stronger, and what swimwear can be developed to improve their performance. Researchers at the Tokyo Institute of Technology are hoping to answer these questions by developing a humanoid robot able to reproduce realistic swimming strokes.  Read More
Retinal implant with power cable (Image: Retinal Implant AG)
Retinitis pigmentosa (RP) is a degenerative eye disease that affects 200,000 people in the United States and Europe and has left 15 million people permanently blind worldwide. German biotechnology firm Retina Implant AG has developed a microchip that provides a useful degree of artificial vision in patients who have been blind for even long periods. The 3 x 3 mm (0.118 in) chip is implanted below the surface of the retina where it electrically stimulates the optical tissues. After successful clinical trials in Germany, the chip is now being tested in Hong Kong and Britain before moving on to planned trials in the U.S.  Read More
The .09 caliber (2.34 mm) SwissMiniGun is dwarfed in this man's hand (Photo: SwissMiniGun)
Here's one for gun collectors with an eye for detail. The SwissMiniGun C1ST is a double-action .09 caliber six-shooter that's just over two inches (5.5 cm) long weighing 0.7 oz (19.8 g). The level of detail is amazing – the Swiss gunsmiths behind the MiniGun are experienced in jewelry and watchmaking crafts, and have orders to produce works of art that happen to be fully functioning guns. And the price? We think you ought to sit down first ...  Read More
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One drawing shows a touch-screen keyboard attachment not unlike the Touch Cover, an access... The US Patent Trademark Office (USPTO) has made public an application for an iPad cover encompassing a flexible touch-screen display. The product detailed in the patent that Apple filed for nearly a year ago would aim to “greatly enhance the overall functionality of the tablet device.”  Read More
The ECOXBT looks slick in orange
Wouldn’t it be nice to lounge in the pool and enjoy your favorite music without risking the health and well-being of your precious mobile device? We have seen a number of waterproof MP3 players and accessories over the years, including the Speedo Aquabeat, the Fitness Technologies UWaterG2 and more recently a waterproof smartphone case with a built-in speaker, ECOXGEAR’s ECOXPRO. Until now, though, we hadn't seen a waterproof Bluetooth speaker (as opposed to water-resistant, like the iShower) like ECOXGEAR’s new ECOXBT. It allows you to listen to your favorite songs in the water while your cell phone or Bluetooth compatible MP3 player remains safely on dry land.  Read More
Nissan's Andy Palmer poses next to London's new NV200 black cab (Photo: Gizmag)
With London 2012 in full effect and all eyes on UK's capital, Nissan has chosen a shrewd Monday morning to announce that its NV200 is to be certified as a London black cab. Nissan claims that the taxi variant of its light commercial vehicle is 50 percent more fuel efficient than other black cabs, allowing the automaker to position the NV200 as the next generation London taxi, just as it has for New York and Tokyo where NV200 taxis are also set to appear. The fully electric model, the e-NV200, is set for London testing next year, and could see service as early as 2014.  Read More
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The Razorfish Emerging Experiences team has built a Digital Gum Machine that sends apps an...
As a child, there was something magically rewarding about dropping some small change into the slot of a gumball machine, turning the lever and being rewarded with some hard candy. The Razorfish Emerging Experiences team has now updated the mini-vending machine for the digital age with a prototype Digital Gum Machine that delivers a digital treat to a smartphone in exchange for a 50 cent coin.  Read More
Emma's custom 'magic arms' were created using 3D printing technology
A two year old girl born with arthrogryposis, a congenital disease that left her unable to lift her own arms, although able to walk, has been given a new lease on life by a 3D printed robotic exoskeleton, enabling her to move freely for the very first time. The exoskeleton, made of a similar material to Lego, was manufactured using a Stratasys Dimension 3D printer so as to create a prosthetic light enough for young Emma to continue walking around freely.  Read More

The SUAVe system allows an unmanned aerial vehicle to create detailed aerial maps of arche...
If you were in Peru right now, at the long-abandoned Inca village of Mawchu, you might see something very modern flying over it – a Skate unmanned aerial vehicle. The aircraft is the key part of a system designed by a team from Nashville’s Vanderbilt University. Once perfected, it should be able to accomplish in 10 to 15 minutes what would take an archeological team two to three field seasons to complete.  Read More
Researchers from Nagoya University and Fujitsu are set to begin field trials of an automat...
Researchers from Nagoya University and Fujitsu have spent the last few years developing an automated detection system that alerts the recipient to possible phone phishing scams. After successful simulation testing, the team has now announced plans for household field trials.  Read More
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AC Schnitzer makes the BMW M Bike Carbon Racer even more 'carbon'
Tuners are a staple in the high performance auto market, building bigger, badder and more extreme versions of sports and luxury cars. AC Schnitzer is one such tuner, offering services for BMW vehicles. The latest vehicle it's chosen to tune isn't a 7 Series or an X5; it's a bicycle.  Read More
First color image from Curiosity showing the  north wall and rim of Gale Crater (Image: NA...
After a successful landing on Sunday, the NASA rover Curiosity has begun sending back images of the planet including the first color pictures and 3D stereographs. In addition to images from the surface of the red planet, the lander has also sent back images captured by onboard cameras during the craft’s dramatic descent through the Martian atmosphere and landing. Meanwhile, an orbiter from an earlier NASA mission sent back images of Curiosity’s descent.  Read More
A solution containing skin cells and proteins has been shown to speed the healing of venou...
According the UK’s National Health Service, one person in 50 over the age of 80 will develop venous leg ulcers. The ulcers occur when high blood pressure in the veins of the legs causes damage to the adjacent skin, ultimately resulting in the breakdown of that tissue. While the ulcers can be quite resistant to treatment, a team of scientists is now reporting success in using a sort of “spray-on skin” to heal them.  Read More
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The glass house from Carlo Santambrogio is literally a see-through cube
"People who live in glass houses shouldn't throw stones," is a proverb not usually taken literally, but anyone brave enough to live in architect Carlo Santambrogio's glass house (designed by Ennio Arosio) may want to do so. They'll also need to not be the shy and retiring type, have a fair amount of money in the bank, and own a plot of land with no close neighbors or easy points of access. Not for the faint-hearted then, but a property we can all aspire to one day live in ... if we ignore the obvious practical concerns.  Read More
Ouya has announced the integration of OnLive, TuneIn and XBMC into its Android-based gamin...
When the Kickstarter-funded Ouya Android gaming console was first announced, we all stood up and took notice. Now, its makers have announced that they are going to be adding even more new features. Early adopters will be able to enjoy XBMC, OnLive and TuneIn right from their US$99 Ouya console.  Read More
Architectural firm St André-Lang has designed and built a compact circular housing prototy...
French architectural firm St. André-Lang has designed and built a compact circular housing prototype that incorporates corn cobs within the walls. The 20 square meter (215 square foot) pavilion style home is located in the protected parklands of Muttersholtz, France and recently won the Archi<20 competition for low-cost, environmentally-friendly architecture. “The total cost of the project was €7,000 [US$8,705],” St. André-Lang architect and co-creator Bastien Saint-André told Gizmag. “But we had some partners (carpenter, woodworker) – the real cost would be around €10,000 [US$12,435].”  Read More
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Fenix lights will come in 350- and 800-lumen versions
Flashlight manufacturer Fenix is bringing its lighting expertise to the bike market with plans to launch a pair of bike lights that combine powerful output, low pricing and an established brand name. Some bikers already mount Fenix torches to their handlebars in place of more purpose-built lighting systems but its new bike light line will just give users a more integrated package for lighting up the road or trail with Fenix power.  Read More
The rapeseed plant is one of the most widely cultivated crops in the world and researchers...
As well as being the third largest source of vegetable oil in the world – after soybean and oil palm – rapeseed (also known as rape, oilseed rape, rapa, rappi and rapeseed) is cultivated in Europe primarily for animal feed. But due to high levels of glucosinolates that are harmful to most animals (including humans) when consumed in large amounts, its use must be limited. Now researchers at the University of Copenhagen have found a way to stop unwanted toxins entering the edible parts of the plant, thereby increasing the potential of the plant to be used as a commercial animal feed.  Read More

The BELLA laser during construction at Berkeley Lab. It recently delivered a record-breaki...
Not even a month since researchers at the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory's National Ignition Facility (NIF) announced a 500 trillion watt laser shot, researchers at the Berkeley Lab Laser Accelerator (BELLA) have managed to deliver a record-breaking petawatt, that is, a quadrillion watts, in a pulse just 40 femtoseconds long at a rate of one pulse every second. To put that in perspective, a petawatt is more than the combined output of all electric power plants in the world at any given time and one femtosecond is a quadrillionth of a second.  Read More
The fanny pack for the 21st century The RUNNUR is a sort of belt for your upper body. More like Batman's utility belt than the average leather pants-hiker, the RUNNUR offers all kinds of storage compartments for everything from your cell phone to your water bottle. Its look is questionable, but its storage capacity isn't.  Read More
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Precision and timing are everything
If you can’t be bothered to head to London, but still want some Olympic excitement, London 2012, the official game of the event (one of them, anyway) has come to Windows, Playstation 3, Xbox 360 and OnLive. Gizmag raced the Xbox 360 version once around the track: read on to see if wins a gold medal.  Read More
The Stone Spray works much like a 3D printer, since it follows a 3D design from a computer...
As useful as 3D printers are becoming in industrial design, they still aren't exactly eco-friendly and are still mostly limited to small scale objects. You couldn't really use one to print a building just yet, but a group of architects may have taken a step in the right direction with a new machine called the Stone Spray. Using natural soil and sand, the Stone Spray can construct intricate solid structures at almost any location, even on vertical surfaces.  Read More
ArmA II zombiepocalypse mod DayZ has its sights set on a a fully-fledged standalone title
DayZ, a zombie survival horror mod for PC military simulator title ArmA II that has attracted rave reviews, has been given the green light by developer Bohemia Interactive to make the step up into a fully-fledged standalone title. The mod, which according to its New Zealand creator Dean Hall has attracted over one million users in the four months since its release, has propelled ArmA II back to the top of the Steam sales charts a full three years after that title's release and it's expected the standalone game will enjoy the same kind of success.  Read More
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Daimler's C2X system sees vehicles and traffic infrastructure network linked so they can c...
With mobile telecommunications technology and social networking revolutionizing the way people communicate, various automakers, including Audi, GM and Daimler, are looking at ways to looking to improve the communications capabilities of vehicles to allows them to easily exchange information with each other and infrastructure to help improve safety, efficiency and driver convenience. Daimler’s effort, called car-to-X (C2X) has now begun its largest ever field trial with 120 network-linked vehicles hitting the roads in Germany’s Rhine-Main region.  Read More
When used in a stove, a few Flamesticks put out quite a flame
Looking not unlike a plastic Popsicle stick, the Flamestick from Germany's AceCamp is a firestarter made from recycled thermoplastic that measures 3.5 inches (8.9 cm) long by 1/4 inch (6.4 mm) wide. While plastic may sound like a strange way to start a fire, the Flamestick offers several advantages over more traditional materials.  Read More
Robotic arms and hands on an adjustable gantry designed to simulate a UAV’s movements
UAVs have proven very successful as surveillance, intelligence-gathering and mapping craft, but their ability to interact with the ground has been largely confined to launching missiles. Now, Drexel University in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania is planning to endow them with arms and hands to allow them to work on such tasks as repairing infrastructure and disaster recovery while hovering near the ground.  Read More
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A launch of STIG-A, STIG-B's predecessor (Photo: Armadillo Aerospace)
At Newspace 2012, hosted by the Space Frontier Foundation in Santa Clara, California, Armadillo Aerospace announced it has been awarded a two-year launch license by the FAA for the launch of its STIG-B payload-carrying vehicle into suborbital space this (northern hemisphere) summer from Spaceport America in New Mexico.  Read More
The iameco v3 touchscreen computer (Photo: MicroPro Computers)
We have seen wooden-framed computers before, although those have generally been off-the-shelf machines that have simply received a steampunk makeover. A team of engineers from Ireland’s MicroPro Computers and Germany’s Fraunhofer Institute for Reliability and Microintegration have gone considerably farther, however. Their wood-bodied iameco (“I am eco”) v3 touchscreen computer reportedly has 70 percent less carbon footprint than a regular desktop PC with a monitor.  Read More
 

The European Commission plans to make it compulsory for all new cars to have Autonomous Em...
The European Commission plans to make Autonomous Emergency Braking systems (AEBs) a mandatory requirement in all new vehicles on the Continent by 2014. These systems typically use one or a combination of radar, lidar or video-recognition technologies to measure the distances between vehicles, warn drivers if they get too close, and to then engage the brakes if the driver fails to take any action.  Read More
Dr. Narayan is testing one of his new batteries by using it to power a small fan (Photo: D...
Revamping a concept that was first explored forty years ago, researchers at the University of Southern California (USC) are putting the final touches on a patent-pending design for cheap, rechargeable, high energy density iron-air batteries. Because of their unique features, the batteries look particularly well-suited to the kind of large-scale energy storage that could accelerate the adoption of renewable energy sources.  Read More
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A new software system is able to determine the visual elements that are unique to a given ...
If you were an animator who was instructed to “Make a street that looks like it’s in Paris,” chances are you might not know what to do. Sure, you could occasionally put the Eiffel Tower in the background, but you couldn’t do that for every shot. If you were using a new data-mining system developed by Carnegie Mellon University and INRIA/École Normale Superiéure in Paris, however, it would show you what you should include. The software automatically looks through photos taken in various cities, and identifies the recurring visual features unique to each place.  Read More
The Clean Bottle Square makes cleaning easy with a lid on the bottom The Clean Bottle, a two-lidded bottle designed for easy cleaning, is getting an upgrade in the form of the Clean Bottle Square. It adds a rigid, stainless steel option to Clean Bottle's line.  Read More
The recently released Tiki USB microphone from Blue Microphones
The snail-like Tiki USB microphone from Blue that caught our attention at CES 2012 has now been released. The PC/Mac-friendly, plug-and-play microphone features background noise-cancellation and auto-muting for online comms and a high quality voice/instrument recording mode, too. Gizmag has spent the last few days chatting, recording, listening, testing, and generally getting to know Tiki a little better. Does it live up to its early promise? Read on to find out ...  Read More
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The Botanicus Interactus system allows plants to be used to control electronic devices suc...
It is now possible to control a computer by touching a house plant – touching the plant in different places can even cause the computer to do different things. While using a mouse or touchscreen still might be more intuitive, Disney Research’s experimental Botanicus Interactus system does hint at what could be possible down the road.  Read More
iBatsID is a free online tool that automatically identifies bats based on their calls (Pho...
Everyone knows that it’s possible to identify different species of birds by their vocalizations, but did you know that it’s also possible to differentiate between different types of bats based on their echolocation calls? Well, now you do. So far, however, there hasn’t been a standardized system of doing so – it’s been left up to individual human listeners to decide on the closest match. That may soon no longer be the case, though, as the new online iBatsID tool comes into use.  Read More
Users may be able to read through lines of text to unlock the device
A patent filed in November of last year shows plans for an eye tracking unlock system. The plans strongly suggest that the feature is intended for use with Google Glass, Mountain View’s hot-topic, wearable-tech product.  Read More
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UCLA researchers found that Prozac component fluoxetine can inhibit RNA and protein produc...
It became an iconic drug that entered pop cultural folklore, but fluoxetine, marketed as Prozac, has put a smile on the faces of researchers for a purpose other than the treatment of depression. Studies carried out at UCLA have found that fluoxetine is a promising antiviral agent, particularly for enteroviruses that can be a cause of death in several parts of the world.  Read More
The Rhino Slider Pro model
The Rhino Slider is a camera track designed to lend DSLR cameras some lateral movement when shooting video. Pitching to a similar market to the similarly successful Genie time-lapse controller from Syrp, it's not surprising to see the Rhino Slide has received more than double its US$20,000 Kickstarter target with 40 days left on the clock. The Rhino Slider is a deliberately simple and therefore affordable device which relies on the camera being slid either by hand, pulley or by gravity.  Read More

The LimbIC chair is uses two carbon-fiber cradles (Photo: Inno-Motion)
One thing that’s generally expected of a chair is that it stays still. True, it might rock or swivel or recline, but if we’re sitting still, we expect the chair to do likewise. Dr. Patrik A. Künzler, head of the Swiss start-up Inno-Motion, disagrees. He has invented the US$8,500 LimbIC - a deliberately wobbly ergonomic chair that's billed as being comfortable to sit in for hours while promoting better health and creativity.  Read More
Two students designed a slingshot-style controller just for Angry Birds out of a motorized...
It's hard to believe just how popular Angry Birds and its spin-offs have become since the first game's release in 2009, but there are plenty of people still enjoying Rovio's series even now. With numerous ports for almost every popular mobile device, game console, and web browser, not to mention downloads totaling over one billion, it's clear that casual gamers are still enamored with the game about suicidal birds and explosive pigs. A couple of students have even gone so far as to create a slingshot-style controller just for the game out of a motorized slider from a sound mixer and an Arduino microcontroller.  Read More
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Fikkes offers spinning and fly fishing models It may read like a Scandinavian misspelling of a common tree, but the Fikkes is actually an innovative piece of gear that combines two staples of the outdoors. This pole will help you fish distant bodies of water of all kinds.  Read More
Nikon has announced the COOLPIX L610 compact camera featuring a 16 megapixel BSI CMOS sens...
Compact snappers looking to zoom in on distant subjects have been given a wallet-friendly helping hand from Nikon with the launch of its new COOLPIX L610 superzoom digital camera. It features a 14x zoom lens that runs from the wide-angle 25-mm right up to the 350-mm telephoto end (35-mm film equivalent), a low-light-friendly 16 megapixel sensor and is capable of full HD movie recording with one touch activation.  Read More
Evanta Motor Co. has breathed new life into the Aston Martin classic DBR1 with a stunning ... Britain's Evanta Motor Co. has paid tribute to the iconic Aston Martin DBR1 with a unique replica of the 1959 Le Mans winning vehicle. This isn't your average replica though - the parts are laid out on a gigantic AirFix-style frame that measures 6.35 meters (20.8 ft) wide and 3.30 meters (10.8 ft) tall.  Read More
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The International Lunar Observatory Association is to send a tested telescope on board Moo...
The International Lunar Observatory Association (ILOA) is being backed by Google Lunar X Prize contestant Moon Express in placing a small telescope on the Moon's surface to test and troubleshoot operating protocols for a fully loaded remote telescope. Last week, the ILO-X, the first ILOA telescope that will be sent to the Moon, was remotely tested by ILOA and Moon Express on the summit of Mauna Kea, and passed with flying colors. Later ILOA/Moon Express missions will include landing considerably larger telescopes at strategic locations on the lunar surface.  Read More
An optional LED adds a little portable lighting to your solar charger Best known for its Swiss Army knives and watches, Wenger has been expanding into other types of gear and accessories, including tents, shoes and sunglasses. Portable solar chargers are some of the latest additions to this expanded line.  Read More
Exogear claims its Exovolt Plus is the world's first stackable battery pack for mobile dev...
If the idea of your mobile gadget running out of juice leaving you incommunicado (or, heaven forbid, bored) fills you with fear, then a battery pack is the obvious solution. But what if your power needs vary from day to day? Exogear has developed a battery pack that it touts as the world’s first stackable battery pack that is designed to adapt to suit your battery needs, no matter how small or how great.  Read More
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Valve has announced that its distribution platform, Steam, will expand beyond game softwar... Game developer and distributor Valve has announced that come September 5, its online distribution platform Steam is to begin selling non-game software.  Read More
Ford's C-MAX Hybrid gets the same fuel economy in the city as on the highway
Ford definitely appears to have Toyota in its sights with its 2013 C-MAX line. Having already revealed the C-MAX Hybrid will be cheaper than Toyota’s Prius v, the U.S. automaker is now boasting that its hybrid utility vehicle beats the Prius v in the fuel economy stakes by up to 7 mpg (33.6 liters/100 km). It is also the first vehicle to offer the same fuel economy rating in both city and highway driving.  Read More
 

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