New and Emerging Technology News part 258 ~ NEW GEN TECH LIFE : new generation technology news

Tuesday, 1 April 2014

New and Emerging Technology News part 258

Gizmag compares some of the best mid-range mirrorless cameras on the market in 2013
We recently took a look at some of the best mirrorless cameras on the market, but with body-only prices starting at US$1,000, they're not within everyone's budget. Luckily, their mid-range counterparts can offer almost as much photographic oomph for far less money. In this guide Gizmag compares the best mid-range mirrorless cameras on the market in 2013.  Read More
Zackees cycling gloves help enlighten drivers on cyclists' intentions
Head- and tail-lights certainly do a lot to help cyclists be seen at night, although they generally don't let motorists know which way those riders are planning on turning. That's where good ol' hand signals come in. In order to make those signals more visible, former Google software engineer Zach Vorhies has created Zackees illuminated turn signal gloves.  Read More
Gizmag's pick of the best laptops of 2013
As I type this round-up of top laptops on my own Windows portable desktop replacement, I can't help thinking that maybe it's time for an upgrade. It seems like only yesterday that dual-core processors, 500 GB hard drives, a couple of hours of portable use and screen resolutions of 1366 x 768 were at the very tip of every salesperson's tongue. But these days such machines would probably have a hard time attracting flies. 2013 has been a year of high performance, low power processors, long battery life, and stunning displays. Read on for a selection of top performers that have caused Gizmag's heart to skip a beat or two.  Read More
Vigo collects information on a user's blinks and body movements and alerts them to when th...
We've seen technology developed to monitor a driver's eyes for drowsiness, alerting them when their focus might be lapsing. The Vigo wearable energy gauge works on a similar principle, yet aims to expand this to other everyday tasks that are likely to induce those heavy eyelids.  Read More
The top 10 things you CAN'T have for Christmas 2013
Luxury, so they say, comes at a price, but in the world of innovation and new technology, things can sometimes get way out of hand. It's with this in mind that each year we compile a list of the most expensive, ambitious and completely over-the-top products and ideas that have crossed our desk in the past 12 months. So from the praiseworthy to the preposterous, here's Gizmag's list of the top 10 things you won't be getting for Christmas in 2013.  Read More
The new suit undergoing neutral buoyancy testing (Image: NASA)
Sometimes you have to take a step back to take a step forward. NASA is carrying out initial tests on a new, lighter spacesuit for use by the crew of the Orion spacecraft that is currently under development. The tests are being carried out in the Neutral Buoyancy Laboratory near the Johnson Space Center in Houston, Texas on a modified version of the pumpkin orange suit normally worn by Space Shuttle crews during liftoff and re-entry and is a return to a space suit design of the 1960s.  Read More
SteamOS will run on Steam Machines of various shapes and sizes
While the Xbox One and PlayStation 4 have stolen the lion's share of hype surrounding next-gen gaming consoles recently, Valve has continued working away on its own entry into the console market. Last week, the company shipped Steam Machine prototypes to 300 beta testers and made the first release of the open-source operating system that will power it, SteamOS, available for download.  Read More
Print from virtually anywhere with Google Cloud Print
Google is doing its bit to delay the emergence of the paperless office with Google Cloud Print, a service that lets users print from web-connected devices, including Android and iOS mobile devices and PCs, from virtually anywhere in the world with an internet connection. So how exactly does it work? Here's a look at setting it up using either a standard printer connected to your computer or a Google Cloud Ready printer.  Read More
Artist's conception of YuTu lunar rover deployment from China's Chang'e-3 lunar lander (Im...
Following 12 minutes of precise maneuvering which began in lunar orbit, China's Chang'e-3 lunar lander, with the Yu Tu (Jade Rabbit) lunar rover onboard, successfully landed on the Moon's surface at 13:11 UT Saturday night. At this point, Chang'e-3's solar panels were opened to begin charging the rover's batteries for its first drive about the lunar surface, which is expected to begin about seven hours after landing.  Read More
Gizmag begins its journey of exploration with Google Glass
Most companies conduct their experiments behind closed doors. If, say, a new iPhone hits store shelves, then chances are the dirty work has been done and it's already pretty polished. But Google is very different, sometimes letting the public join in on the beta testing fun. Gizmag recently joined Google's US$1,500 smartglasses beta program, and though we're still a ways off from a full Google Glass review, these are our early impressions.  Read More

The iPhone-controlled myLIFTER lifting device
Hooks and traditional shelves offer a practical storage solution for overcrowded garages, though they also involve the awkward task of lifting heavy items in a confined space. myLIFTER, a motorized lifting unit that you can control with your iPhone, aims to ease the load by lifting and suspending these items from your ceiling, all at the touch of a button.  Read More
The MAG furniture line (Photo: Benjamin Vermeulen) Benjamin Vermeulen has designed a new range of flatpack furniture that simply snaps into place using magnets, no tools required.  Read More
2014 was a big year for high-tech, high-price supercar hardware
We've already taken a look at the best green concept cars of 2013; now it's time to turn our attention to the other end of the car-tech spectrum: full-blown, engine-growling, asphalt-scarring performance cars. The year was a big one for high-tech, high-price supercar hardware, seeing the restart of several iconic lineages, extravagant special- edition birthday presents, and numerous all-new start-ups with intriguing ideas. Many of the cars really screamed out with wildly unique styling.  Read More
Artist's concept of the Successor submarine (Image: Ministry of Defence)
As part of an update to Parliament on the progress of the Trident replacement program, Britain’s Ministry of Defence (MoD) has released a concept image of the Royal Navy’s next ballistic nuclear missile submarine. This coincides with the awarding of two contracts to BAE Systems Maritime-Submarines for £47 million (US$76 million) and £32 million (US$60 million) to begin preliminary design work on the nuclear-powered submarines, currently called the Successor class, which are intended to replace the Navy’s aging fleet of of Vanguard-class boats by 2028.  Read More
Researchers at the University of Huddersfield are developing a breath test for lung cancer...
With lung cancer survival rates greatly improved by early detection, we've seen a number of efforts to develop a better way to detect the disease in its early stages. Various breath test devices have been developed by a number of companies around the world, and now a team from the University of Huddersfield in the UK plans to trial such a device to identify lung cancer in pharmacies.  Read More
The famous Earthrise photo from Apollo 8 (Image: NASA)
When the first astronauts landed on the Moon, it wasn’t a straight jump from Earth to the lunar surface on the first try. Instead, the first footsteps only came after a long series of preliminary steps, one of which was a manned orbital mission to the satellite. This December 21st marks the 45th anniversary of the day in 1968 when Apollo 8 lifted off from the Kennedy Space Center in Florida and into history as the first manned mission to orbit the Moon. It not only paved the way for Apollo 11, but is also seen by some as a greater achievement than the Moon landing itself.  Read More
The AWB OneSky is aimed at beginners (Photo: Astronomers Without Borders)
Astronomers Without Borders (AWB) is a nonprofit organization aimed at knocking down national and cultural boundaries by encouraging a common interest in astronomy. Along with their message that we all share one sky, AWB is now selling a neat little grab-n-go telescope called OneSky. The scope is perfectly suited for a quick look at the heavens from the backyard, as well as for throwing in the car before heading to darker skies. I'm reviewing this scope, and it is a prize for the price.  Read More
Graduate students Matthew Mancuso (left) and Vlad Oncescu, with the smartCARD
Although a lot of people are concerned about monitoring their cholesterol levels, probably not many of those people want to head off to a clinic or use an expensive, complicated device to get those levels tested every few days. Soon, however, they may not have to. Scientists from Cornell University have developed a gadget called the smartCARD, that allows users to easily check their own cholesterol using their iPhone.  Read More
Gizmag goes hands-on to share our first impressions of the limited-edition Toq smartwatch
When we put together our Smartwatch Comparison Guide, we had reviewed all of the watches save for one. But our review unit for that missing piece, the Qualcomm Toq, is now in hand. We have a lot more time to spend with it before publishing our Toq review, but these are our first impressions.  Read More
An eTriage armband, that transmits a patient's location and condition
When emergency response crews have to deal with many casualties at once, such as at a disaster site, one of the first things they do is set up a triage system. This involves assessing the severity of each patient's injuries, so that the people who need help most urgently get it first. It's a system that works, but the EU-funded BRIDGE project is trying to make it better. The project partners are developing a new high-tech triage, that incorporates GPS and RFID technology.  Read More
 
The DelFly Explorer MAV in flight
We've seen autonomous MAVs (micro air vehicles) before, and we've seen flapping-wing MAVs before. According to a group of researchers from the Netherlands' Delft University of Technology, however, we've never seen an autonomous flapping-wing MAV – until now. Yesterday the four-man team announced its DelFly Explorer, which is described as "the first flapping wing Micro Air Vehicle that is able to fly with complete autonomy in unknown environments."  Read More
The Willie concept shows important route info to travelers
Anyone that's been to Las Vegas and caught a glimpse of the "Hot Babes" billboard circling around the city knows that vehicle advertising can be effective ... at least at grabbing your attention. A new bus concept by designer Tad Orlowski puts a more modern spin on the idea, integrating large LCDs on the broad sides of the bus. The screens can display a variety of information, including paid advertising, bus information and TV coverage.  Read More
The spacewalks have delayed the flight of the Cygnus cargo ship (Image: NASA) Christmas will be another work day for the crew of the International Space Station (ISS) this year. While many Earthlings are sitting down to turkey and plum pudding, NASA astronauts Rick Mastracchio and Mike Hopkins will be carrying out the third and final of three spacewalks announced by NASA managers on Tuesday.  Read More
LG's 34-inch UM95 and 29-inch UM65 UltraWide monitors that will be launched at CES 2014
Although 16:9 remains the most popular aspect ratio for TVs and computer monitors, Philips pushed the boundaries – the side ones, at least – with the introduction of its Cinema 21:9 Gold Series LED TVs in 2011. LG got on board last year with the release of the world's first 21:9 computer monitor and is now set to "widen" its 21:9 offerings at CES 2014.  Read More
IBM has released its latest list of technologies that will most affect our lives over the ...
For eight years now, IBM has annually released what it calls the IBM 5 in 5 – "a list of innovations that have the potential to change the way people work, live and interact during the next five years." All five items on this year's list center around the concept of computers and other systems learning about individuals in order to best meet their needs.  Read More
The Beatbuddy guitar pedal drum machine from David Packouz
Though noodling is a whole lot of fun, and fingertip calluses certainly need regular workouts, there are times when it would be good to have your very own John Bonham or Mitch Mitchell to provide a rock-steady beat. Playing along to backing tracks or engaging the help of loopers, drum machines or rhythm boxes can work to some degree, but there's little or no room for improvisation or creativity unless you take your hands away from the guitar to mix things up a bit. Billed as the first guitar pedal drum machine, the Beatbuddy from David Packouz puts control of the beat at your feet, leaving your hands free to get on with some serious shredding.  Read More
The Snooperscope adds night vision to smartphones
Ever since Paris Hilton and her night vision outtakes took center stage, the technology has grown exponentially in popularity. Now, a product called Snooperscope aims to bring similar technology to the masses through the use of smartphones and tablets.  Read More
The Metaphone, by Herault Arnod Architects (Photo: André Morin)
Though not unheard of, the melding of architecture and music is uncommon enough to pique our interest, especially when done on the scale of The Metaphone, by Herault Arnod Architects. The firm recently constructed an unusual combined music hall and instrument as centerpiece of an ongoing project to regenerate a former coal mine in the Pas-de-Calais region of northern France.  Read More
Software developed at MIT subtly alters photos to make faces either more (right) or less (...
Lots of people wish that they were more attractive, but have you ever wanted to just look more ... memorable? Just a few tweaks here and there, to help keep your face from being forgotten? Well, software created by researchers at MIT’s Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory can now make that happen – to photos of your face, that is.  Read More
The Samsung GamePad with a smartphone locked in
Plenty of companies are releasing controllers designed to bring a more traditional gaming experience to smartphones. Samsung, one of the most popular creators of Android devices, is aiming to grab a piece of the controller pie for itself with the introduction of the GamePad.  Read More

Southwest Airlines has installed water vapor sensing systems on many of its aircraft (Phot...
Every 12 hours, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) launches weather balloons from approximately 70 locations across the US. While these do provide valuable data, a lot can change between those intervals and those locations. That's why a new project is taking advantage of something that's already going up in the sky on a much more frequent basis and in a higher number of locations – Southwest Airlines jets.  Read More
Flock 1 will be the largest fleet of Earth imaging satellites in orbit
Space and analytics firm Planet Labs has secured US$52 million in new funding, bringing it to within touching distance of launching a fleet of Earth imaging satellites in early 2014. The new investment brings the company’s total raised to over $65 million, and will help in its aim to generate imagery of and data about Earth, which will be openly accessible for both commercial and humanitarian purposes.  Read More
The Bedjet can be placed under the bed if there's room – just be sure to clean out any dus...
At this time of year, those of us living in the northern reaches of the planet once again struggle with a recurring First World problem – getting into a bed that has cold sheets. People located farther south, meanwhile, are faced with the opposite situation – getting too hot in bed. The Bedjet is designed to address both problems, while also allowing users to run their furnaces or air conditioners at lower settings overnight.  Read More
A research team from Cornell University's Creative Machines Lab has managed to 3D print th...
Rather than buy a replacement part from a local hardware store, 3D printing offers up the opportunity to produce what you need at home, when you need it. But what if you have to replace a whole unit? If a project from Cornell University's Creative Machines Lab is any indication, such things may soon be possible. A research team has managed to 3D print the cone, coil and magnet of a loudspeaker, and then use it to throw out sounds from a digital audio player.  Read More
Gizmag's pick of the 10 coolest high tech toys
Christmas is just around the corner and the hunt for the best kids toys out there has never been more exciting. With iPhone-controlled toys, customizable robots and smart toys that aim to teach kids life skills while entertaining them, the latest breed of high-tech toys have a lot to offer. Even books and pens, augmented with a little technology can read to kids or coach them to write. If you're looking to surprise junior with toys that feature a delightful technological twist, Gizmag's top 10 coolest tech toys for kids should give you plenty of ideas.  Read More
A new test has been developed that could help identify patients using antidepressants who ...
The results of a years-long study with patients on antidepressants may help doctors predict one of the most severe side effects those medications can produce: treatment-emergent suicidal ideation (TESI). The condition is estimated to affect between four and 14 percent of patients, who typically present symptoms of TESI in the first weeks of treatment or following dosage adjustments. So far doctors haven’t had indicators to predict which patients are more likely to develop TESI, but a new test based on research carried out by the Max Planck Institute of Psychiatry in Munich, Germany, could change that.  Read More
The FitnessSHIRT and MENTORbike team up
The Fraunhofer Institute for Integrated Circuits IIS is developing its wearable sports monitoring FitnessSHIRT with a 2014 launch in mind. It recently detailed a new application for the technology, pairing it with a pedelec bike powertrain and smartphone app to seamlessly manage motor output based upon the user's physiological data. In other words, when you show signs of being tired and winded, the motor automatically kicks in extra power.  Read More
LG's Chromebase is the world's first all-in-one PC powered by Google's Chrome OS
We've already seen a multitude of Chromebooks and a Chromebox, and now LG's Chromebase joins the list of Chrome-based computers. Set to be officially unveiled at CES next month, the Chromebase is the world's first all-in-one PC powered by Google's Linux-based Chrome operating system.  Read More
Two wireless controllers can be strapped to common cardio equipment, or to the two foam ba...
Hoping to build on their success in bringing a marriage of physical movement and arcade action to the mainstream with Guitar Hero, RedOctane co-founders Kai and Charles Huang have formed Blue Goji and are looking to gain a foothold in the rapidly-evolving world of exercise-gaming. Their latest effort, Goji Play, uses two wireless controllers and an activity sensor to turn a regular cardio machine into a makeshift video game platform.  Read More
Gizmag goes hands-on to take a look at the present and potential of smartwatches and Googl...
If wearable computing really is the next big thing, then will the future look more like Google Glass or an iWatch? Well, Gizmag has spent plenty of time with all the big smartwatches, and we're now "Exploring" with Google Glass, so we have a few things to say on the subject. Read on, as we take a look at the present and future of Google Glass and smartwatches.  Read More


Lift off of Gaia (Photo: ESA)
A cosmic census got under way this morning as ESA’s Gaia mission lifted off atop a Soyuz–Fregat from the European Spaceport in Kourou, French Guiana at 9:12:19 AM GMT (10:12:19 AM CET). The 2,030 kg (4,475 lb) unmanned probe is at the start of a five-year mission to carry out a survey of one percent of one percent of the 100 billion stars that make up our galaxy as part of a project to produce the most detailed three-dimensional galactic map ever attempted.  Read More
The new, completely redesigned Mac Pro
Apple has been promising that its redesigned Mac Pro would be reaching consumers before the end of 2013, and it looks like it's actually delivering ... less than two weeks before the year's end. The new, completely redesigned Mac Pro is hitting store shelves and Apple's online store starting today, with several varieties to choose from.  Read More
Power seems to come from the center mounted console shifter as no accelerator peddle is no...
The perfect do-it-yourself gift for budding designers and architects during the holiday season has to be Lego. The small blocks of plastic with millions of design outcomes have entertained many a child since the early 1950s. Now an ambitious duo has snapped together 500,000 pieces of the stuff to create the world’s first air-powered Lego roadster.  Read More
The newly detailed research vehicle is part of Ford's Blueprint for Mobility
Ford took the next step in its "Blueprint for Mobility" this month, revealing an automated research vehicle based on the Fusion Hybrid. Working in cooperation with the University of Michigan and State Farm, Ford will use the car to test next-generation sensor systems that enhance automated awareness.  Read More
The Mini John Cooper Works concept will debut at the North American International Auto Sho...
The holidays are a time for stocking stuffers and BMW has given us one with a hint of what’s to come in the new year. On Monday, the car maker announced that it would present the new Mini John Cooper Works concept at the North American International Auto Show (NAIAS) 2014, running January 13 to 26 in Detroit. Since we’re getting just a taste of what is still a concept, there aren’t a lot of details and BMW is keen to talk more about style than engineering, but we do get a bit of an idea of what this track-oriented concept is about.  Read More
A Sense and Avoid (SAA) system that allows UAVs to operate safely around other aircraft in...
Palmdale, CA. General Atomics Aeronautical System, Inc. (GA-ASI), the maker of the Predator and Reaper Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) successfully completed the first of several flight tests of a prototype Sense and Avoid (SAA) system, that allows a UAV to see and avoid other aircraft in flight.  Read More
NTU Prof Peter Preiser and scientist Dr Annie Gao
A new discovery by scientists from Singapore’s Nanyang Technological University (NTU) holds promise for the development of a Malaria vaccine. The result of five years research, the breakthrough is based on the ability to block the invasion of red blood cells by the deadly parasite.  Read More
Here are some essential tips for securing your iPad or iPhone running on iOS 7
As their power increases, we're storing more and more of our important and personal data on our mobile devices. That's why it's of paramount importance that we make sure they're as secure from prying eyes as possible. Thankfully, iOS 7 has improved security features designed for just that. If you're the proud owner of an iPhone 4 or later, iPad 2 or later, iPad mini or 5th-gen iPod touch, here are some simple tips you can use to improve the chances your valuable data won't fall into the wrong hands.  Read More
The new £27-million Stonehenge Visitor Centre that opened this week (Photo: Peter Cook)
The new £27-million (US $44 million) visitor centre for the world’s most famous Neolithic monuments has opened its doors just days before the winter solstice in Britain, offering a modern, but low-key and educational introduction to the 5,000-year-old stone circle. Cars are banished and visitors are offered a virtual "Stonehenge experience" before approaching the stones on foot or by shuttle.  Read More
The tests aim at reducing the weight of the SLS by 20 percent (Image: NASA)
On December 9, NASA began what is either an impressive engineering test or a classic example of world-class larking about. At the space agency’s Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Alabama, engineers are crushing an enormous can by subjecting it to almost one million pounds of force. This may seem like a party trick that’s gone out of control, but there’s a serious reason behind this … or so NASA says. The crushing is part of the project to design the fuel tanks for NASA’s Space Launch System (SLS), which will be used to launch the Orion spacecraft and deep space missions.  Read More

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