New and Emerging Technology News part 226 ~ NEW GEN TECH LIFE : new generation technology news

Friday, 21 March 2014

New and Emerging Technology News part 226

Pingtime: Ping Pong augmented (Video still: videogram)
If, like me, you've always found ping pong a little lacking in flashing lights, Pingtime, an augmented reality project created for the 2013 Rokolectiv Festival in Bucharest, may just take your fancy. Conceived by Sergiu Doroftei, the arts project augments an ordinary table tennis table with projections and sounds by equipping the paddles with sensors and using an infrared camera to track the ball.  Read More
The Change Initiative building (Photo: Gundeep Singh) The Change Initiative is Dubai's first retail store to focus its efforts solely on selling sustainable products and services, so it's not too surprising that its owners asked architectural firm HOK to make the premises as green as possible. However, what's remarkable, is that The Change Initiative is reportedly being hailed as the world's most sustainable building, when assessed according to the LEED standard.  Read More
The NapAnywhere is designed to help commuters sleep anywhere
We've all been there; you sit down for a long flight, and you just can't seem to get your head to stay up so you can actually get a couple of hours of sleep to pass the time. The fact is, airplane seats just don't seem to be built for comfortable sleeping. A new product called NapAnywhere is designed to rectify the situation by supporting your head and allowing you to sleep comfortably, even while sitting straight up.  Read More
SmartPlayhouse's Illinois model
If you're the proud parent of a sleek and glassy iPhone, and an owner of a small child (wait … what? – Ed) you'll know that objects don't have to be childish in appearance to hold appeal to children. It's perhaps with this in mind that the SmartPlayhouse was designed, being a small cage or holding pen (or playhouse, surely – Ed) in which to ensnare and detain children (I give up – Ed), while having a nicely modern, clean appearance.  Read More
Between the nets, six inflatable PVC spheres up to 8.5 m (30 ft) in diameter, divide the s...
If you have ever wished you could experience weightlessness but cant afford space tourism, then a Dusseldorf art gallery may get you closer, as long as you wear sturdy shoes. The "in-orbit" multi-level art installation by Tom├ís Saraceno is suspended 20m (60 ft) above the piazza of the Kunstsammlung Nordrhein-Westfalen gallery. The Argentinian architect and artist’s largest work to date aims to resemble a cloud landscape for those brave enough to walk through it.  Read More
Like her mittens, the 3D glasses might one day be optional (Photo: Miki Yoshihito)
Researchers at the University of California Santa Cruz have developed a 3D display which can also be viewed in 2D without glasses, and without the blurred effect caused by overlapping images. Though, as you'd expect, the screen displays both left and right images, it also emits a mysterious third image which is the key to the technology.  Read More
Ebay embraces 3D priting with its Ebay Exact app Ebay has teamed up with a host of 3D printing specialists to launch an iOS app named ebay Exact which lets users customize iPhone cases, jewelry and other odds and ends.  Read More
The Nectar fuel cell-powered USB charger converts butane into electricity
There's no doubt that mobile electronic devices have revolutionized our daily lives. A smartphone and laptop, both equipped with Bluetooth and Wi-Fi, provide mobile computing capabilities only dreamed of a decade or two ago. If only the batteries would keep up. While portable fuel cells have been proposed for a decade as a solution to the requirement for more portable power, actually making such a beast has proven commercially impractical. Now Lilliputian Systems, Inc., an MIT spinoff company, is manufacturing the Nectar, a USB recharger based on a butane fuel cell.  Read More
Carlin Dunne takes his Lightning Electric Superbike up Pikes Peak (Photo: Lightning Motorc...
A production version of Lightning Motorcycle Corp's Electric Superbike has won this year's Pikes Peak International Hill Climb among two wheelers (both gas and electric) with a time of 10 minutes and 0.964 seconds. The nearest competitor, racing a Ducati Multistrada, finished with a time nearly 20 seconds slower.  Read More
Peugeot's AE21 Hybrid electric bike previewed last week at the 'What's Next' show
European automakers aren’t averse to producing vehicles of the two-wheeled, pedal-powered variety. BMW, Audi and Mercedes-Benz all offer a range of bicycles, with most also adding electric bikes to their line ups in recent years. Peugeot is no exception and recently previewed its latest ebike, the AE21 Hybrid, at the “Who’s Next” show in Paris.  Read More

Smart Diapers feature a panel containing several non-toxic test strips to monitor irregula...
Diapers usually rank very low on the list of items in need of a high-tech upgrade, despite products like the TweetPee recently hitting the market. But unlike a Twitter-enabled diaper, which provides information that anyone with a nose could figure out on their own, a new diaper from Pixie Scientific could actually warn parents of health issues before they become serious. The Smart Diaper uses several reactive agents and an app to monitor irregularities in an infant's urine over time and alerts parents if they need to visit a doctor.  Read More
Elon Musk will put an end to the guesswork by revealing alpha designs for the Hyperloop in... If like us, you've been eagerly anticipating more details on Elon Musk's proposed Hyperloop high-speed transport system, the wait is almost over. Musk has revealed via Twitter that the initial design will be published on August 12.  Read More
UCO StakeLight Anyone that camps long enough is bound to do it, probably a few times – trip on a guy line or stub his toe on a metal stake. The new StakeLight from UCO lights up the stake to prevent this common scenario.  Read More
Patrick Lincoln, director of SRI’s Computer Science Laboratory, demonstrates bRight with b...
bRight from SRI International has been designed to make life a little easier for folks who need to make snap decisions in time critical situations, but are faced with an overwhelming amount of information flowing in all at once. In addition to offering task automation and data filtering, the system can predict the actions, behavior and needs of a user or group based on previous activity and active monitoring systems.  Read More
The BBiQ will have up to three metal probes for temperature monitoring
Grilling can be quite rewarding and enjoyable, but it can also be a hassle. Hunching over the hot, sizzling grates while your friends hang out, enjoy beer and tell old college stories about you can get tired fast. The new BBiQ lets you drop your spatula and unchain yourself from the grill while guaranteeing that your food doesn't suffer.  Read More
Yamaha's DTX502 Series electronic drums
Yamaha's updated DTX502 Series e-drums made their US debut at the Summer NAMM Show in Nashville at the weekend, and are now ready to ship. The three new kits were originally launched at Hamburg's Musikmesse in April, and feature revamped drum pads, a realistic vertical-motion hi-hat, a lighter steel rack, and a brand new trigger module that the company claims is more powerful than anything in its class.  Read More
This artist's concept of OPALS in operatin (Image: NASA)
In internet engineering, there’s a problem called the “last half mile," which looks at how to connect users to high-speed fiber optic networks without going through old-fashioned copper wires that can slow data down to a crawl. NASA has more of a “last 250 miles” problem in making data connections with the International Space Station (ISS). The upcoming Optical Payload for Lasercomm Science (OPALS) project is an optical technology demonstration for using lasers to improve communications with the ISS and other spacecraft in hopes of boosting connection speeds by a factor of 10 to 100.  Read More
City dwellers will soon by under the watchful gaze of digital ad hoardings (Photo: Shutter...
Though facial recognition software has been in our homes for some time (having been a feature in Picasa and iPhoto since 2009), the prospect of being the unwitting subject of similar technology while out and about is an alien one. That could be about to change thanks to the announcement of OptimEyes, a system designed to be fitted to digital advertising hoardings in Europe to gauge just who is paying attention.  Read More
S/2004 N 1 is the smallest of Neptune's 14 moons (Image: NASA)
NASA's Hubble Space Telescope has discovered a previously undetected moon orbiting the distant gas giant Neptune. Given the catchy designation of S/2004 N 1, it's thought to be no more than 12 miles across, making it the smallest of the planet's 14 moons.  Read More
The LIGA2.X jigsaw puzzle (Image: Jochen Heneka, KIT)
It may consist of only three pieces, but at under a millimeter in size each, we imagine this jigsaw puzzle made at the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) is a little on the fiddly side. The researchers involved used the latest in LIGA technology, which combines lithography, electroplating and molding, to make objects which are very tall for their thickness.  Read More

An incredibly detailed ink sketch of a bird by the robot artist eDavid
The line between art and technology isn't just being blurred, it's being erased altogether. Painting and sketching from photographs and life, for example, is a technique that is now being mastered by robots. The latest, called eDavid, combines a camera, computer vision software, and a standard welding robot arm to skillfully recreate (in a variety of styles no less) any image you feed its software. It seems that even art, a cornerstone of human ingenuity since the dawn of man, isn't safe from a robot takeover.  Read More
Gizmag review the Celluon Epic, a projection keyboard for your smartphone, tablet, or PC
Today more and more people use smartphones and tablets as their main computing devices. But these devices typically don't have physical keyboards, and that leaves the door open for innovation and creative alternatives. Take, for example, the Celluon Epic projection keyboard. Read on, as Gizmag goes hands-on with a device that will turn any flat surface into a full QWERTY keyboard.  Read More
Bond is well known for his Walther PPK, but a particular .45 Colt revolver reveals more ab...
It's one of the most memorable moments in perhaps the best James Bond film, From Russia with Love: SPECTRE agent Rosa Klebb, posing as a hotel maid, drops her gun, and appears to be at a disadvantage as she goes toe to toe with Sean Connery's imposing Bond. That is until she deploys her iconic poison-tipped dagger shoes, which have gone on to be copied in other notable action films … and Wild Wild West. But as kitsch as Klebb's cleaver clogs might seem, the CIA attempted to replicate them, and another classic Bond gadget, in real life, according to research by Dr. Christopher Moran of Warwick University. At the heart of the story is the close friendship of Bond author and Ian Fleming and former CIA Director Allen Dulles. Gizmag spoke to Moran about 20th century Intelligence, and its peculiar relationship with the fictional British spy …  Read More
The Mobile Robotics Group's autonomous Nissan Leaf
Autonomous cars will be tested on UK roads before the end of the year, according to a government policy paper published on Tuesday. According to the BBC, trials will take place on less busy rural and suburban roads, using what the paper describes as a semi-autonomous mode which will allow a driver to take control of the vehicle if necessary. A driver will ride along during all tests for safety reasons.  Read More
The world's largest building has opened for business in China (Image: ETG) The world's largest building has opened for business in Chengdu, the capital city of Sichuan province, China. The New Century Global Center boasts a mammoth 1.7 million sq m (almost 19 million sq ft) of indoor space, which is four fifths the size of Monaco.  Read More
A new type of paddling
Stand-up paddleboarding has been one of the fastest growing outdoor sports in recent years. It's been growing so fast that even general interest publications like Time Magazine and The Wall Street Journal have taken notice. New start-up outfit Nocqua believes it has a way to make paddleboarding even more fun and popular, empowering paddlers to get out in the dead of night.  Read More
Skylon with the SABRE engine in sutaway The British government announced on Tuesday that it has authorized an investment of £60 million in the Skylon spaceplane. The funds will be used to further develop the revolutionary SABRE engine, which is designed to power the Skylon into orbit and back without the need for outside boosters or tanks.  Read More
Microsoft's Surface RT will get a touch-optimized version of Outlook 2013 as part of the u... One of the problems with the Microsoft Surface RT and Windows RT in general, was the lack of a decent email client. While the Surface RT comes with Office Home and Student Edition installed for free, it doesn’t include Outlook. This leaves users with the bleak and underwhelming Mail app, or bouncing between web-based email accounts in IE. But Microsoft is about to patch this hole with the upcoming of release of the Windows RT 8.1 update.  Read More
The Last Ride of the Pony Express - painted by  George M. Ottinger in 1873 - showing a Pon...
After linking the world for 167 years, the commercial electric telegraph is no more. The speed with which electromagnetic telegraph systems took over both short- and long-distance communication in the mid 19th century set the pattern which telephones and the internet would follow, spawning the connected world we now live in. The closing down of India's state-run Bharat Sanchar Nigam, Ltd. (BSNL) network on Monday sparked a last-minute rush of people looking to send a souvenir telegram to mark the historic event before the electric telegraph was relegated to the history books.  Read More
WaterBee demonstration at Castelldefels, Barcelona
With robots doing everything from milking cows to crop dusting, farming has come a long way since they days of plodding along behind a horse and plow. Irrigation practices are also benefiting from advances in technology. The large-scale WaterBee smart irrigation and water management system is a case in point: it allows farmers use their smartphones to not only switch on the water where and when it’s needed, but also to get up to the minute information on field conditions.  Read More

The new Samsung 840 EVO 1 TB SSD is the highest capacity drive in Samsung's new EVO line
We've already seen 1 TB-plus capacity solid state drives (SSDs) from the likes of Smart and OCZ, and today Samsung announced it was joining the club with the addition of a new EVO line to its popular 840 SSD lineup. Samsung says the consumer-oriented 840 EVO models will offer up to 1 TB of storage and boast write times up to three times faster than previous 840 Series SSDs.  Read More
US Government drones may not be welcome in Deer Trail, Colorado come Aug. 6 Deer Trail, Colorado (population 600 or so) is to vote on a local ordinance that would allow drone hunting licenses and bounties for shooting down UAVs, according to ABC affiliate KMGH-TV.  Read More
Gizmag reviews the pre-release version of Plants vs. Zombies 2: It's About Time. Does it l...
The original Plants vs. Zombies was a casual gaming classic. It had the perfect blend of quirky humor, memorable characters, and just-challenging-enough strategy. Most of all, it was a blast to play. Now, four years later, PopCap Games returns with the long-anticipated follow-up, Plants vs. Zombies 2: It's About Time. Does it hold a candle to its predecessor? Read on, as Gizmag puts it through the paces.  Read More
The Navigo bracelet syncs to a smartphone via Bluetooth and uses vibrations to guide you i... Having a GPS-enabled device with a built-in digital compass in your pocket is nothing special these days, but there's still room for improvement when it comes to the usability of these functions. The Navigo rises to this challenge by putting a digital compass on your wrist and giving it the ability to guide you using vibrations, as well as link wirelessly to mapping information on your smartphone.  Read More
Principal Investigator John Hagopian and his team have developed a new technique to apply ...
Super-black nanotechnology might sound like something ripped from the pages of a comic book, but instead of being in the hands of a super-villain, it's a NASA-researched technology that is set to make spacecraft instruments more sensitive without increasing their size. John Hagopian, an optics engineer at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center, and his team have demonstrated the ability to grow a uniform layer of carbon nanotubes on oddly shaped platforms, which will extend the potential of the technology by allowing nanotubes to be grown on 3D components.  Read More
Harvard Microrobotics Laboratory is developing 2D objects that can give themselves an extr...
Sure, flat-pack furniture is inexpensive and easy to transport, but when you open the box the first question almost everyone asks is, “Wouldn't it be great if it would assemble itself?” You could get a robot to help, but engineers at the Harvard Microrobotics Laboratory are working on ways to get objects to assemble themselves ... and they might give 3D printing a run for its money at the same time.  Read More
2013 Goodwood Festival of Speed
Twenty years of bleeding-edge supercars, nostalgic classics, soaring bikes, grumbling racers and motorsport royalty were celebrated at this year's Goodwood Festival of Speed. Goodwood shared its anniversary with a number of friends, including Aston Martin, McLaren and the Porsche 911, in an event that saw a record 196,000 visitors enjoy a warm weekend filled with tire smoke, hill climbing and auto sightseeing of the highest order.  Read More
Build is a modular furniture system that comprises odd-shaped blocks that can be combined ...
Buying furniture usually means you're stuck with it for many years, until it either needs replacing or you can justify the cost of updating it with something newer. One simple way of changing things up is to buy modular furniture that can configured in a number of different ways. If chosen well this kind of purchase can last not only the ravages of time but also adapt to an individual's changing tastes and style. Which is where Build, a modular honeycomb-like furniture system, comes in.  Read More
NearBytes uses sound to transfer data between devices
NFC has been hailed as the next big thing for a few years now, but adoption has been a lot slower than anticipated with people required to update their phones to NFC-capable models to take advantage of the technology. Brazilian startup Kinetics has developed a new communication technology called NearBytes that allows data transfer between older smartphones, including all existing Android and iOS smartphones, by using sound.  Read More
Honda’s one-off HF260 Lawn Tractor is capable of reaching 60 mph (96 km/h) in 4.0 seconds Sporting a 1000cc engine borrowed from a Honda VTR Firestorm and wearing all-terrain rubbers, the one-off Mean Mower from Honda UK just turned grass removal into an extreme sport.  Read More
 
 
 

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