New and Emerging Technology News part 259 ~ NEW GEN TECH LIFE : new generation technology news

Tuesday, 1 April 2014

New and Emerging Technology News part 259

'Quick Robin, to the AirMule!'
If you saw The Dark Knight Rises, then you no doubt remember the very cool-looking Batwing aircraft in which Mr. Wayne flew over the streets of Gotham. Perhaps you thought that while it was pretty impressive, there was no way that anything like it could work in real life. Well hey, guess what? The Batwing-like AirMule VTOL (Vertical Takeoff and Landing) prototype aircraft recently demonstrated its ability to fly autonomously, bringing it one step closer to carrying out a full mission demo.  Read More
Gizmag runs through the big updates from Google's XE12 update for Glass Explorers
Earlier this week, Google pushed out the last software update of 2013 to Google Glass Explorers. As Gizmag is now part of the Google Glass beta-testing party, we thought we'd give you our hands-on impressions of some of the new features.  Read More
The Smokio e-cig can be linked to a smartphone
Electronic cigarettes are growing in popularity as an alternative to smoking, as it replaces the actual smoke with vapor. This allows them to be used inside places where traditional cigarettes are not allowed. A new product has just been announced called Smokio, which takes the electronic portion of electronic cigarettes to heart, adding connections to smartphones that allows users to track all kinds of data about their smoking habits.  Read More
The TURANOR PlanetSolar cruises past Tahiti
Solar technology has evolved beyond just your grandpa's big, bulky photovoltaic panels on the roof. Advances in flexible, hyper-efficient and nano-scale materials of late has made it possible for solar cells to begin popping up in all kinds of shapes and places you might not expect. Here's a quick rundown of some surprising spots where solar technology dwells – be sure to flip through the gallery to get a full grasp on the scale of the increasingly solar-powered landscape.  Read More
Cells from rats' retinas have been successfully jetted from an inkjet printer (Photo: Shut...
Imagine if conditions that presently cause blindness could be treated by simply by fabricating new tissue, and using it to replace the defective part of the retina. We may not be at that point yet, but we've definitely taken a step closer, thanks to research being conducted at the University of Cambridge. Scientists there have successfully used an inkjet printer to "print" rats' retinal cells onto a substrate, paving the way for the creation of custom-made eye-repair material.  Read More
Phlite lamps convert your photography gear into interior lights
Whether it's their vintage rangefinder or a carbon fiber tripod, some photographers like looking at camera equipment almost as much as the photographs they've taken. The Phlite lamp is a product which might mean us camera-geeks don't have to pack our kit away at the end of a shoot, because it turns photography gear into stylish interior lighting.  Read More
Gizmag breaks down some of the biggest and best iPhone and iPad games of 2013
iOS gaming has come a long way. Just a few years ago the best you could hope for was a virtual pool simulator or Doodle Jump. But 2013 was an amazing year for iPhone and iPad games, with ports of top-notch console titles joining creative originals from indie developers. Join Gizmag, as we break down some of the top iPhone and iPad games of 2013.  Read More
Samsung's 105-inch Curved UHD TV Today appears to be the day for jumbo-sized TV announcements. First, we heard that LG will be debuting its 105-inch "world's largest curved UHD TV" at CES. Now, word comes that Samsung is making the same claim about a new TV of its own – with the added boast that it's also the "most curved" UHD TV ever.  Read More
Measuring 105-inches diagonally and sporting a 21:9 aspect ratio, LG's upcoming 105UB9 cou...
The annual Consumer Electronics Show (CES) is still weeks away, but that hasn't stopped LG from unveiling what's sure to be one of its most eye-catching new products. Measuring 105-inches diagonally and sporting a 21:9 aspect ratio, the upcoming 105UB9 could be the largest curved UHD TV in existence.  Read More

The SmartCharge LED lightbulb
When the lights go out due to a power outage at night, you'll probably have to spend the next few minutes fumbling around in the dark hoping to lay your hands on a nearby torch or trying to remember where you put the candles and matches. If only the lights could stay on for a while after the power was cut. The SmartCharge LED bulb has been developed with the simple aim of ensuring that users are never left in the dark again. It includes technology that's able to determine whether someone has just turned off the light at the switch, or there's been an actual power failure. If the latter, the bulb will provide users with hours of continuous light.  Read More
 
New York City in the pastel shades of Nickolay Lamm's cellular network interpretations (Ph...
Nickolay Lamm is a self-identified artist and researcher, who is making a career of transforming ordinary images into extraordinary visual displays of quantitative information, to borrow from Ed Tufte. We take a look at his transformation of New York, Chicago, Hollywood, and Washington D.C. through converting cellular network transmissions into visual overlays.  Read More
The device is designed to sit in a camera’s hotshoe mount
We've seen a steady flow of devices emerge and attempt to bridge the gap between the amateur photographers and those creating time-lapse masterpieces. The Astro camera mount, for example, reduced the required technology to a three-ringed device that fits in your pocket, while the Genie and Camalapse went one step further to incorporate panning and tracking shots for those wanting a little creative freedom. These factors considered, the Michron is by no means revolutionary, but with no buttons, screens or dials, it may be the most simplified and user-friendly installment yet.  Read More
Maria Leijerstam is in the midst of attempting a trip to the South Pole on a custom-built ...
Last winter, polar explorer Eric Larsen attempted to become the first person to cycle to the South Pole. Continually stymied by deep, unrideable snow, Larsen fell behind schedule and was forced to abandon the attempt. This year, several others are taking up the challenge. Thirty-five year-old British adventurer Maria Leijerstam is hoping the ticket to success is a fat-tired recumbent trike built to task.  Read More
2013 3D Printer Comparison Guide
The 3D printer industry is growing in both the professional and maker markets. With more and more 3D printers diving under the US$4,000 price-point, is it time for you to pick up one of your own? Though the consumer end of the market is still young, business is booming, and this disruptive technology is something that will definitely appeal to many Gizmag readers. That’s why we’ve taken the top desktop 3D printers and lined them up for a side-by-side comparison.  Read More
Claudiu Ionescu is the architect behind Romania's very first digital museum
Claudiu Ionescu is the architect behind Romania's very first digital museum. Situated near the Mures Floodplain Natural Park in Pecica, the unusual and chapel-like museum features a sweeping green roof and dramatic spire facade at its rear. When the sun hits the building, its shape along with the surrounding courtyard, transforms the museum into a giant sun dial.  Read More
A US$30,000 grant will see human stem cells sent to the International Space Station (ISS) ...
A drawback for the use of stem cells in medical treatment is their limited supply due to slow rate of growth in conventional laboratories. Dr Abba Zubair of the Cell Therapy Laboratory at Mayo Clinic in Florida believes this problem could be overcome and stem cell generation sped up by conducting the process in space. He will now have the opportunity to put his hypothesis to the test, courtesy of a US$30,000 grant that will see Zubair send human stem cells to the International Space Station (ISS) to observe whether they do in fact grow at a greater rate than on terra firma.  Read More
A molecular messaging system capable of transmitting data over several meters has been bui...
A molecular messaging system capable of transmitting data over several meters has been built using off-the-shelf materials costing around US$100 and some vodka. The system mimics chemical signalling seen in nature and has potential applications for communications in environments not compatible with conventional wireless technologies, such as underwater, in tunnels and pipelines, as well as at the nano scale and within the body.  Read More
RUB researchers have developed a bio-based solar cell using cyanobacteria found in hot spr...
Researchers at Ruhr-Universitat Bochum have created a bio-based solar cell capable of generating a continuous electrical current of several nanowatts per sq cm. The new approach avoids damage to the tapped photosynthetic cells, an issue that has plagued previous attempts to harness nature's "power plant."  Read More
The Underwater Jet Pack is designed to let users perform underwater acrobatics using forea... Who wouldn't like to fly around underwater? You can already sort of do so using devices such as the SeaBob, although you're still basically just "along for the ride." If SCP Marine Innovations' Underwater Jet Pack reaches production, however, it looks like it should provide an experience much closer to that of being Aquaman.  Read More
Gizmag's Top 10 off-grid homes
We're big fans of off-grid homes here at Gizmag – and for good reason: an off-grid home frees the owner from the vagaries of unscrupulous energy giants, can potentially help reduce impact on the environment, and offers a greater self-sufficiency. Join us as we shine a light on 10 of our favorites.  Read More


Gizmag looks back on the space highlights of 2013
This has been a busy year in space, with rovers roving on Mars and the first landing on the Moon in 40 years, the search for life beyond our Earth heating up, and 3D printing moving into orbit. As a Chinese rover explores the lunar surface and astronauts work to repair the International Space Station (ISS), Gizmag looks back on the space highlights of 2013.  Read More
Gizmag reviews the Qualcomm Toq smartwatch, with its gorgeous Mirasol display
Manufacturers are still figuring out what exactly customers want out of smartwatches – if anything at all. So it kinda makes sense that a company like Qualcomm would make a device that's meant to showcase its design and hardware for future smartwatch-makers. Read on, as Gizmag reviews a consumer product that doubles as a reference design, the Qualcomm Toq smartwatch.  Read More
TellSpec is a handheld food scanner that connects to your smartphone to inform you about a...
Figuring out whether the fries on your plate contain traces of trans-fat, or if those celery sticks are truly pesticide-free can be tricky, if not impossible. That's why Isabel Hoffmann along with mathematician Stephen Watson set out to create TellSpec, a hand-held device that you can simply point at a food item, to identify what's in it. Not only does the device warn you about chemicals, allergens and ingredients you'd rather avoid, it'll also help you figure out food sensitivities and track your vitamin intake. The goal, the company says, is to help people make clean food choices by letting them "check their food as easily as they check their mail."  Read More
Bioinspired magnetically propelled helical microswimmers could deliver drugs at the right ...
If you remember the 1966 science fiction film Fantastic Voyage, you'll recall how miniaturized government agents traveled through blood vessels in a tiny submarine, in their attempt remove a blood clot from a scientist's brain. Synthetic nanomotors that can do the same job have been the subject of numerous research efforts and now University of California, San Diego (UCSD) researchers report that they've created powerful biodegradable "microswimmers" that can deliver drugs more precisely, derived from common plants like passion fruit and wild banana.  Read More
Guitarist Mike Rowell plays the Bouillez acoustic
If you go shopping for an acoustic guitar, the chances are you'll be greeted with many variations on the same theme – a contoured wooden box with a hole between the bridge and the high end of the neck. The Bouillez (pronounced Bull-yah) dares to be different. Its creator Dan Bouillez has lopped off the fixed soundboard of a cheap, kick-about acoustic and replaced it with a floating one that gives the instrument a striking look and unique tone. With a great-sounding prototype in the bag, the self-taught musician and engineer has just started to build the very first production model.  Read More
Samsung's 2014 Smart TVs will debut at CES 2014 with improved voice commands and 'finger g...
It seems not even the impending holiday is stopping some of the tech industry's heavy hitters from teasing their standout products for the 2014 CES. First LG and Samsung unveiled separate 105-inch curved UHD TVs on the same day, and now Samsung is dropping some details on its Smart TVs for next year. In addition to less complicated voice commands, the company's 2014 Smart TV line will allow the use of "finger gestures" for basic controls like changing the channel, adjusting the volume, or rewinding video.  Read More
Scientists have demonstrated a new type of robotic muscle with 1,000 times more power than...
If a so-called "rise of the machines" ever comes to fruition, our chances of survival may have just taken a big hit. A team of scientists from the US Department of Energy ’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory has demonstrated a new type of robotic muscle with 1,000 times more power than that of a human's, and the ability to catapult an item 50 times its own weight.  Read More
We breaks down our top games of 2013
It's been a big year for gaming. Not only did we see the arrival of the two big next-gen systems, but we also saw developers squeezing some amazing technical and artistic achievements out of seven-year-old consoles. Which titles stood above the crowd? We polled our writers for their picks for the top games of the year.  Read More
The Huracán retains some Gallardo design elements but is cleaner and less cluttered with o...
Beginning next month, Lamborghini’s successor to the outgoing Gallardo will be showcased to the world on a 60 city, 130 event tour. The 610 hp Huracán LP 610-4, which sports all-wheel-drive and a more dynamic chassis, will need to work hard to surpass the Gallardo’s ten year sales record and impress its loyal fan following.  Read More
USCD Jacobs researchers have developed an algorithm that uses computer vision to identify ...
Whether it's fashion, a favorite football team, or a certain kind of music, humans seem to enjoy being considered part of a larger group, and often self-identify as such. With this in mind, students from the UCSD (University of California, San Diego) Jacobs school of Engineering are currently developing a computer algorithm that can deduce from an image whether you're a goth, surfer, hipster, or biker.  Read More
Gizmag looks back on the space highlights of 2013
This has been a busy year in space, with rovers roving on Mars and the first landing on the Moon in 40 years, the search for life beyond our Earth heating up, and 3D printing moving into orbit. As a Chinese rover explores the lunar surface and astronauts work to repair the International Space Station (ISS), Gizmag looks back on the space highlights of 2013.  Read More
Gizmag reviews the Qualcomm Toq smartwatch, with its gorgeous Mirasol display
Manufacturers are still figuring out what exactly customers want out of smartwatches – if anything at all. So it kinda makes sense that a company like Qualcomm would make a device that's meant to showcase its design and hardware for future smartwatch-makers. Read on, as Gizmag reviews a consumer product that doubles as a reference design, the Qualcomm Toq smartwatch.  Read More
TellSpec is a handheld food scanner that connects to your smartphone to inform you about a...
Figuring out whether the fries on your plate contain traces of trans-fat, or if those celery sticks are truly pesticide-free can be tricky, if not impossible. That's why Isabel Hoffmann along with mathematician Stephen Watson set out to create TellSpec, a hand-held device that you can simply point at a food item, to identify what's in it. Not only does the device warn you about chemicals, allergens and ingredients you'd rather avoid, it'll also help you figure out food sensitivities and track your vitamin intake. The goal, the company says, is to help people make clean food choices by letting them "check their food as easily as they check their mail."  Read More
Bioinspired magnetically propelled helical microswimmers could deliver drugs at the right ...
If you remember the 1966 science fiction film Fantastic Voyage, you'll recall how miniaturized government agents traveled through blood vessels in a tiny submarine, in their attempt remove a blood clot from a scientist's brain. Synthetic nanomotors that can do the same job have been the subject of numerous research efforts and now University of California, San Diego (UCSD) researchers report that they've created powerful biodegradable "microswimmers" that can deliver drugs more precisely, derived from common plants like passion fruit and wild banana.  Read More
Guitarist Mike Rowell plays the Bouillez acoustic
If you go shopping for an acoustic guitar, the chances are you'll be greeted with many variations on the same theme – a contoured wooden box with a hole between the bridge and the high end of the neck. The Bouillez (pronounced Bull-yah) dares to be different. Its creator Dan Bouillez has lopped off the fixed soundboard of a cheap, kick-about acoustic and replaced it with a floating one that gives the instrument a striking look and unique tone. With a great-sounding prototype in the bag, the self-taught musician and engineer has just started to build the very first production model.  Read More
Samsung's 2014 Smart TVs will debut at CES 2014 with improved voice commands and 'finger g...
It seems not even the impending holiday is stopping some of the tech industry's heavy hitters from teasing their standout products for the 2014 CES. First LG and Samsung unveiled separate 105-inch curved UHD TVs on the same day, and now Samsung is dropping some details on its Smart TVs for next year. In addition to less complicated voice commands, the company's 2014 Smart TV line will allow the use of "finger gestures" for basic controls like changing the channel, adjusting the volume, or rewinding video.  Read More
Scientists have demonstrated a new type of robotic muscle with 1,000 times more power than...
If a so-called "rise of the machines" ever comes to fruition, our chances of survival may have just taken a big hit. A team of scientists from the US Department of Energy ’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory has demonstrated a new type of robotic muscle with 1,000 times more power than that of a human's, and the ability to catapult an item 50 times its own weight.  Read More
We breaks down our top games of 2013
It's been a big year for gaming. Not only did we see the arrival of the two big next-gen systems, but we also saw developers squeezing some amazing technical and artistic achievements out of seven-year-old consoles. Which titles stood above the crowd? We polled our writers for their picks for the top games of the year.  Read More
The Huracán retains some Gallardo design elements but is cleaner and less cluttered with o...
Beginning next month, Lamborghini’s successor to the outgoing Gallardo will be showcased to the world on a 60 city, 130 event tour. The 610 hp Huracán LP 610-4, which sports all-wheel-drive and a more dynamic chassis, will need to work hard to surpass the Gallardo’s ten year sales record and impress its loyal fan following.  Read More
USCD Jacobs researchers have developed an algorithm that uses computer vision to identify ...
Whether it's fashion, a favorite football team, or a certain kind of music, humans seem to enjoy being considered part of a larger group, and often self-identify as such. With this in mind, students from the UCSD (University of California, San Diego) Jacobs school of Engineering are currently developing a computer algorithm that can deduce from an image whether you're a goth, surfer, hipster, or biker.  Read More

The Nexus 5 and Galaxy S4
While there is no formal ceremony or rite of passage, it seems clear to me that 2013 was the year that Android finally came of age as a fully mature mobile OS to power the world. Rather than a fancy coronation ceremony, let's take a look back at the highlights of the past 12 months in Android.  Read More
The 2014 Jeep Cherokee will feature the EcoTrac Disconnecting All Wheel Drive system (Phot... Set to debut in the 2014 Jeep Cherokee, the EcoTrac Disconnecting AWD driveline system is designed to improve fuel efficiency by disengaging components from the driveline when not required, so that only power is delivered to the front wheels.  Read More
Wear is designed to help those with hearing difficulties make sense of conversations in no...
From hiding hearing aids in your mouth to having them built-in to the arms of your glasses, we have seen some innovative efforts to assist those with hearing difficulties in recent years. With these unobtrusive technologies available, you might think that wearing a hearing aid around your neck would be the least desirable of options. Yet the team behind Wear believe that by favoring comfort and aesthetics over discretion, it may have conceived a viable alternative.  Read More
Mr. Postman is a solar-powered mailbox that connects to a home network via Wi-Fi
Nowadays, it seems like we are connecting everything in our homes to Wi-Fi. Whether it's locks, lightbulbs or other appliances, people seem to like using their smartphones to control their home. Mr. Postman aims to bring that same level of connectivity to snail mail deliveries.  Read More
Will the F1 be among the last of McLaren's cars to have windshield wipers? (Photo: McLaren...
Windshield wipers are life-savers, but also can drive one to distraction with their incessant streaking and chattering. Well, the tyranny of the wipers may soon be over. McLaren Automotive’s chief designer Frank Stephenson told The Sunday Times that the performance motoring company is investigating the use of "ultrasonic force fields" to replace windshield wipers in automobiles. While Stephenson referred to a military source for McLaren's tech, there appears to be very little public information on how such force fields might clean a windshield during a storm, so I'm taking a look at the patent history to see how this might be accomplished.  Read More
Through the Spike smartphone app, users are able to capture, measure, 3D model and share a...
Traditionally, the technology that goes into laser hardware for surveying and 3D modeling has been the plaything of architects, surveyors and engineers. But now, with a view to expanding into the consumer market, the company IkeGPS want to bring this functionality to the mainstream. And what better way to do it than sticking it on the back of a smartphone?  Read More
Benjamin Caldwell resting in the Binary Furniture display room (Photo: BRC Designs) Benjamin Rollins Caldwell exults in materials, designing entire lines of furniture from a wide range of castoffs. His latest creations form his remarkable Binary collection of living room furniture, in which all components come from old PCs and defunct electronics.  Read More
Cubli stays balanced even on a tilted surface
Back in October, we heard about MIT's M-Blocks – they're metal cubes that use internal flywheels to hurl themselves around, sticking together magnetically to form simple structures. Now, scientists from ETH Zurich have unveiled something similar. Their Cubli cubic robot also uses flywheels to move around, plus it can actually balance on one corner.  Read More
The Pop-Out Outlet in use You've probably never given much thought to your electrical outlets, but apparently the folks at Legrand think that those always-exposed holes are kinda ugly. That's why they created the chic-looking and actually kind of practical Pop-Out Outlet.  Read More
One of two versions of MIT's prototype portable scanner
If you're like a lot of people, you don't make an annual trip to the ophthalmologist to get your eyes checked ... and you really ought to, in order to catch any problems before it's too late. If it were possible to get them checked at a regular doctor's office or clinic, though, perhaps you might do so more often. That's one of the reasons that a team at MIT have designed a new hand-held retinal scanner, that can quickly and easily be used anywhere.  Read More


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