Apr 24, 2013

Photo of Berlin taken from space illustrates the east-west divide

posted by Larra Morris

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Canadian Astronaut Chris Hadfield tweeted this amazing photo of Berlin, Germany as seen from the International Space Station with the caption “Amazingly, I think the light bulbs still show the East/West division from orbit.” The more dense, commercial district on the west is lit up by bright white lights, while the eastern half of the city emits a softer, yellow glow.
via Laughing Squid

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Image: Chris Hadfield

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Apr 24, 2013

Empathy for robots looks very similar to the empathy we feel for humans

posted by Larra Morris

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A new study seems to confirm that humans harbor a great deal of empathy for their robotic brethren, reacting to affection towards — or violence against — them in the same way they react to these things in humans.

The paper, scheduled to be presented this summer at the 63rd Annual International Communication Association Conference, combines the results of two small studies. In one, participants were shown video of a small, dinosaur-inspired robot being either shown affection or abused, and given a survey about their emotional frame of mind immediately afterwards. In the next, participants were monitored with an fMRI machine that took stock of their brain activity while watching videos of humans, robots, and inanimate objects being treated affectionately, as well as abused.
via Geekosystem

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Apr 24, 2013

Remote control turtles could one day be our secret slow and steady drones (video)

posted by Larra Morris

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As demonstrated in this video, a large shield mounted to a turtle's shell can be remotely spun to make it think there's an obstacle to the left or right of it. And instinctively it goes in the opposite direction to avoid it, allowing someone at the controls to effectively steer it remotely.

Of course this setup is a little clunky—and a little conspicuous—to be used in the field. But sensor-laden surveillance turtles, or other animals, could one day be released into dangerous areas wearing tiny LCD shutter goggles instead that simulate obstacles in their field of view allowing them to be controlled just like a drone.
via Gizmodo

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Apr 23, 2013

Hexapod robot vehicle

posted by Laura Domela

Matt Denton of Hampshire, UK, built a huge hexapod walking machine that he operates by joysticks inside the cockpit. It took him four years and cost "hundreds of thousands of pounds" to make.
via Boing Boing

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Tags : robots,    0 comments  
Apr 23, 2013

Scientists have 3D-printed mini human livers for the first time ever

posted by Laura Domela

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The dream of one day completely doing away with frustratingly long transplant lists in favor of made to order, 3D-printed organs is closer to becoming a reality. Scientists at Organovo in San Diego have, for the very first time, been able to 3D print tiny replicas of human livers.
via Gizmodo

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Apr 23, 2013

SpaceX’s latest Grasshopper test flight shatters its own record, hovers in the air to Johnny Cash

posted by Laura Domela

SpaceX’s Grasshopper is a great example of a simple idea with awesome execution. The Vertical Takeoff Vertical Landing (VTVL) craft goes up, and it goes down. That’s about all it does, but when you consider the fact that it goes up over 800 feet in the air, hangs out for a little while, and then gently sets itself back down on the landing pad like nothing ever happened…well, we’re pretty impressed, anyway.
via Geekosystem

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Apr 23, 2013

You can now fly around Google Earth, Superman-style

posted by Laura Domela

Consider for a moment that just a few decades ago, the only way you could manipulate a 3D map of the planet Earth was by using a spinning globe made of paper and plastic. Then we had those early world atlas CD-ROMs that seemed so amazing as the Web was just gearing up. Now, thanks to Google Earth and the technology of Leap Motion, we can virtually fly around the globe using our hands to guide the way.

via DVICE 

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Apr 23, 2013

Drop The Beat builds a reconfigurable electronic drum kit into a vest (video)

posted by Larra Morris

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Looking similar to a bulletproof vest, Chau's wearable drum kit consists of four neoprene drum pads attached to an outer covering with velcro, allowing an artist to position them almost anywhere on the vest to suit individual performance or preference. Each drum pad has a piezo sensor embedded in it to measure any changes in pressure, allowing the wearer to hit it, press on it, or just rake their fingers across it to get a response.
via Gizmag

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Apr 23, 2013

Need to cure a lazy eye? Try playing Tetris

posted by Larra Morris

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How can Tetris improve failing vision? Wel, a lazy eye is where just one eye is underperforming, meaning that there are ways it can be trained back into shape. To bring the lazy eye back into sync with the healthier eye, researchers used a 2 lens system in which one eye only gets to see the falling pieces, while the other sees only the pieces that have already been placed.
via Geekosystem

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Apr 23, 2013

Now booking: your flight to space

posted by Laura Domela

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Richard Branson is determined to take paying passengers to space. So determined, in fact, that Virgin Galactic has enlisted an elite group of accredited “space agents” to sell tickets at a starting price of $200,000.

In the Bay Area, Tony Cardoza [pictured, above] and Lynda Turley Garrett are two of three agents licensed to sell space flights, which they offer alongside African safari adventures. They have sold less than a handful of tickets between them, but they are convinced that sales will pick up as Virgin Galactic inches closer to launch.
via Venture Beat

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Tags : things that fly, space,    0 comments  
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