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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.

Follow Ben:

— Electronics

Inexpensive new depth-sensing camera could outperform the Kinect

By - April 27, 2015 1 Picture
Although the Microsoft Kinect was designed first and foremost for gaming, the fact that it's a cheap but reliable depth-sensing camera has led to its use in everything from navigation systems for the blind to user-following grocery carts to remote-control cyborg cockroaches. Soon, however, it may be facing some competition. The Northwestern University-designed Motion Contrast 3D Scanning (MC3D) camera should also be economical, while offering higher-quality imaging and the ability to operate in sunlight. Read More

SpillMate turns your regular vacuum cleaner into a wet-vac

Cleaning up liquids spilled into carpets can be difficult – no matter how firmly you press a rag against them, you've always got to wonder how much of the liquid you're really soaking up. That's why the SpillMate was created. It attaches to the hose of a conventional vacuum cleaner, allowing it to actually suck liquid out of the carpet. Read More
— Health and Wellbeing

Existing skin medications may reverse effects of multiple sclerosis

By - April 23, 2015 1 Picture
It's a frustrating situation. There are already stem cells in the nervous system that are capable of repairing the damage done by multiple sclerosis, but getting them to do so has proven very difficult. Now, however, a multi-institutional team led by Case Western Reserve University's Prof. Paul Tesar may have found the answer – and it involves using medications that were designed to treat athlete's foot and eczema. Read More
— Medical

Prototype device could make getting needles a Comfortably Numb experience

By - April 23, 2015 1 Picture
There are already beverage cans that contain chemically-activated chilling modules. Now, three students from Houston's Rice University are working at applying the same principle to hypodermic needles. Instead of keeping the medication in the syringe cool, however, the idea is that a special needle cap could be used to first chill and numb the patient's skin, making the subsequent injection relatively painless. Read More
— Good Thinking

Sweat-analyzing AlcoStop system could thwart would-be drunk drivers

By - April 22, 2015 1 Picture
There are already in-vehicle systems that keep people from driving while intoxicated, although most of them require users to blow into a breathalyzer. The prototype AlcoStop system, however, takes a less intrusive approach – it measures users' blood alcohol levels by analyzing their sweat via built-in sensors, and won't allow the car to start if those levels indicate that they're too drunk to drive. Read More
— Science

Disney tech may lead to better dubbing of foreign films

By - April 22, 2015 1 Picture
Here's something you might not know about foreign-language films ... when they're dubbed to English, the editors don't necessarily just go with the most literal translation. Instead, they observe the actors' lip movements, then choose English dialogue that at least somewhat matches up with those. Now, a team from Disney Research Pittsburgh and the University of East Anglia has developed a system that does so automatically, and that offers a wider range of suggested alternate phrases. Read More
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