Photokina 2014 highlights

Ben Coxworth

Ben Coxworth
An experienced freelance writer, videographer and television producer, Ben's interest in all forms of innovation is particularly fanatical when it comes to human-powered transportation, film-making gear, environmentally-friendly technologies and anything that's designed to go underwater. He lives in Edmonton, Alberta, where he spends a lot of time going over the handlebars of his mountain bike, hanging out in off-leash parks, and wishing the Pacific Ocean wasn't so far away.
Top Articles by Ben Coxworth
The Voiroo Zero's aeronautically-inspired frame

Italy's Albaviation is in the business of manufacturing small aircraft, along with parts for them. So, what happens when the company's TrixonLab division decides to build a hardtail mountain bike? Well, with its riveted sheet aluminum construction, the Zero's frame is pretty reminiscent of a retro airplane. According to its creators, however, there's more to the design than just unique looks.  Read More

Squids change color by contracting pigment-filled cells known as chromatophores – the Rice...

Scientists have long marveled at the squid's ability to sense the color of its surroundings, and then instantaneously change its own skin coloring in order to blend in. To that end, a number of projects have attempted to create man-made materials that are similarly able to change color on demand. One of the latest studies, being led by associate professor Stephan Link at Rice University, may ultimately result in improved LCD displays.  Read More

The Seatylock folds out to a total length of one meter (3.2 feet)

If you're using your bike just to go meet someone at the coffee shop, it's a hassle to have to bring along a backpack, just to carry your lock. You could get a lock-mounting bracket installed on your frame, but the Seatylock presents an interesting alternative – as its name suggests, it's a bike seat that can be removed to serve as a lock.  Read More

The Radinn in action

Wakeboarding sure looks like a lot of fun, but it does have at least one limiting factor – you need to find someone else to go out on the water with you, to pilot the boat. Swedish entrepreneurs Alexander Lind and Philip Werner decided to do something about that, and created the Radinn electric wakeboard. While it doesn't provide you with a wake on which to do tricks, it does let you go out when and wherever you want.  Read More

Gizmag gives TMR Designs' Imprint Grips a try

Whether you're pounding over rocks and roots or flying down a steep descent, you definitely don't want your hands to be slipping off your mountain bike's handlebar grips. With that in mind, UK-based TMR Designs recently set about designing grips that could be custom-molded to the size and shape of an individual rider's hands. After a successful Kickstarter campaign, the resulting Imprint Bicycle Grips are now in production. I got my hands on a pair – literally – to find out if they really make a difference.  Read More

The smartphone microscope, in use at the PNNL lab

Suppose you were a first responder, who got called out to investigate a suspicious substance found in a public place. Instead of having to transport that material back to the lab, wouldn't it be better if you could just take a microscope image of it with your smartphone, email that image off to a remote lab, then receive the analysis within just a few minutes while you were still on location? Thanks to a very inexpensive new phone attachment developed at the US Department of Energy's Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL), that could soon be possible.  Read More

The AlumaSki is intended for recreational use, along with rescue and defense applications

Jet Skis are certainly able to squeeze into narrow waterways, although you probably wouldn't feel comfortable scraping one's hull against a rocky riverbed. Steel-hulled jet boats are considerably tougher than Jet Skis, but they're not nearly as nimble. Alaska-based Mackinnon Marine Technologies' AlumaSki, however, attempts to combine the best of both worlds. It has the form factor of a personal watercraft, along with a one-piece quarter-inch-thick aluminum hull.  Read More

The Compactix Glyder in use

By now, pretty much everyone has heard about the health risks involved with remaining seated and sedentary for long periods of time. Standing desks are designed to address the problem, as are miniature cycling and elliptical trainers that can be used under a conventional desk while you remain seated. One of the problems with those machines, however, is that your knees may bang against the underside of your desk as you're using them – plus, they can be noisy. That's where the Compactix Glyder comes in.  Read More

A small part of the trade show floor at Interbike 2014

Interbike is North America's largest bicycle industry trade show, so it's definitely a fun place to be if you're into bikes. This year's event, which we attended last week at the Mandalay Bay Convention Center in Las Vegas, was definitely no exception. Although we've already told you about some of the more interesting innovations that we came across, there are still plenty of others that we've yet to share ... and you can see them here.  Read More

Wolfgang Haupt shows us the Freecross

If you're an avid skier who wants to stay in shape over the summer, then you might use a fitness device along the lines of a Nordic Track. One of the problems with those machines, however, is that you're just stuck in one place while using them – the exact opposite of the freedom that's a big part of skiing. That's why skier Wolfgang Haupt teamed up with Porsche Engineering to create the Freecross.  Read More

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