Computational creativity and the future of AI

Ben Coxworth

The current VineRobot prototype

While many of us may fantasize about running a vineyard someplace like the south of France, doing so wouldn't actually be all ... well, wine and roses. For one thing, you'd need to regularly walk up and down all those rows of vines, continuously stopping to check on the plants themselves and their grapes. It's the sort of thing that it would be nice if a robot could do. A robot like the VineRobot.  Read More

A diagram of the magnetized graphene (Image: Shi Lab, UC Riverside)

Graphene is extremely strong for its weight, it's electrically and thermally conductive, and it's chemically stable ... but it isn't magnetic. Now, however, a team from the University of California, Riverside has succeeded in making it so. The resulting magnetized graphene could have a wide range of applications, including use in "spintronic" computer chips.  Read More

The AB-1 is designed to keep electronic devices from being shaken to bits

There are plenty of systems that let you mount your smartphone on your bike's handlebars, but do you really want all those road vibrations going straight into your phone? While most bar-mount phone cases do have a thin layer of silicone inside them, Juin Tech's AB-1 suspension mount goes a lot farther – it utilizes an actual coil spring shock absorber to isolate phones, lights, GPS units or other devices from the shakes.  Read More

The Smart Helmet's aerodynamic design is intended to lessen wind noise

Nand Logic's Smart Helmet may just top the list when it comes to the highest number of electronic goodies packed into a single helmet. While it's intended for activities such as motorbiking, cycling or snowboarding, some people might end up wanting to wear the thing even when they're just walking down the street – or auditioning to join Daft Punk.  Read More

Researchers have developed E. coli bacteria that can't survive without specially-supplied ...

It's been the premise of many a sci-fi/horror movie ... a genetically-modified organism is created in the lab to help the human race, but instead it gets loose and wreaks havoc in the outside world. Well, scientists from Harvard and Yale are working to make sure that such a scenario can't take place – at least, not with one of the bacteria most commonly used in biotech research. Teams from both universities have produced genetically-altered E. coli bacteria that can't live without special amino acids, which can only be obtained from a lab.  Read More

In the notebook, Turing reportedly 'works on the foundations of mathematical notation and ...

Among his many achievements, British computer science pioneer Alan Turing created one of the first theoretical models of a general-purpose computer, helped develop the concept of artificial intelligence, and was in charge of breaking the German Enigma cypher during World War II. With the recent release of the film The Imitation Game, he's now becoming known to a whole new generation. It's only fitting, therefore, that a rare collection of his scientific notes is about to head to auction.  Read More

The Ridersmate connects you to your ride, and sends an alert if you fall off

If you regularly take off into the hinterlands on a motorbike, mountain bike or horse, there are no doubt times when you wonder, "What happens if I crash and hurt myself, and no one knows where I am?". You might be able to phone for help, although that wouldn't be the case if you were knocked unconscious. That's why British telecommunications engineer David Coleman developed the Ridersmate. If you fall off your bike/horse, it automatically sends a text message to let other people know that something's amiss.  Read More

A vaccine currently in development may be more effective at keeping nicotine molecules fro...

If you're a smoker who's trying to quit, you may recall hearing about vaccines designed to cause the body's immune system to treat nicotine like a foreign invader, producing antibodies that trap and remove it before it's able to reach receptors in the brain. It's a fascinating idea, but according to scientists at California's Scripps Research Institute, a recent high-profile attempt had a major flaw. They claim to have overcome that problem, and are now developing a vaccine of their own that they believe should be more effective.  Read More

Forcite's Alpine ski helmet sports multiple electronic features

So, you think that a ski helmet is just supposed to protect your head? Well, the folks at Australia's Forcite Helmet Systems apparently believe that it should do a little more. Among other things, their Alpine helmet lets the user shoot video, talk on the phone, and alert the authorities if they crash – hopefully not because they were distracted by talking on the phone.  Read More

The manly-lookin' Leatherman Tread

Leatherman multi-tools can certainly come in handy, but they are one more thing that has to be stuffed in a pocket or hung on a belt. That's where the Leatherman Tread comes in. It's a stainless steel bracelet that incorporates 25 tools within its links. Additionally, because none of those tools are knives, it shouldn't cause problems going through airport security.  Read More

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