Advertisement

Ben Coxworth

Good Thinking

Audio-monitoring tech keeps announcements audible

Messages announced over train station loudspeakers are notorious for being unintelligible. It can also be difficult to understand announcements made in airports, at conferences, or in any number of other busy public spaces. Germany's Fraunhofer Institute for Digital Media Technology is trying to do something about it, however. It's developed new audio-enhancement software, which might even find use in smartphones.Read More

Bicycles

Robotic welding arm used to 3D print a stainless steel bike

Although they're still far from being common, 3D-printed metal bicycle frames do now exist. Usually they're made using a sintering process, in which a laser is utilized to selectively melt steel powder, building it up in successive layers. Now, however, a team of students at the Delft University of Technology (TU Delft) in the Netherlands has taken another approach – they've created the world's first stainless steel bike made via a welding-based 3D-printing technique.Read More

Telecommunications

Microsoft's undersea data center uses the ocean to keep its cool

Although many people may think that cloud computing exists purely in cyberspace, it does in fact have a physical home – data centers located around the world, each one full of linked servers. These data centers use a lot of power, they create a lot of heat, and it helps if they're close to populated areas. While we've already seen some creative approaches to meeting these needs, Microsoft recently announced that it's tried something else yet … it anchored an unmanned data center to the bottom of the sea.Read More

Marine

DEDAVE may be the autonomous underwater vehicle for everyone else

The Ford Model T wasn't the first car to ever be commercially available, but it was one of the very first to be mass-produced. This meant that its price could be kept relatively low, allowing for purchase by people who would otherwise have never been able to afford an automobile. Well, the DEDAVE could be to autonomous underwater vehicles (AUVs) what the Model T was to cars. Created by Germany's Fraunhofer Institute for Optronics, System Technologies and Image Exploitation, it's claimed to be "the world's first autonomous underwater vehicle to be developed from the outset with a view to series production."Read More

Outdoors

Fuel cell lantern ditches batteries for salt water

For many people, camping/emergency lanterns are one of those things that may sit for months without being used, only to have dead batteries when they're finally needed again. While solar-powered lanterns are one alternative, they do still need to sit in the sunlight for a few hours in order to charge. That's where Hydra-Light's PL-500 comes in. It's a fuel cell-powered lantern that's ready to shine as soon as it receives some salt water.Read More

Bicycles Review

Review: MagLOCK magnetic pedals should attract a certain crowd

Many mountain bikers swear by the pedalling efficiency of so-called clipless pedals, in which a steel cleat on the bottom of each shoe engages a spring-loaded mechanism in the pedal. Some other riders, however, just don't like the idea of being "snapped in" like that. It was with this in mind that cyclist Dave Williams created MagLOCK pedals. They're non-threatening platform pedals, that keep the user's feet in place using magnets instead of mechanisms. We recently had a chance to try them out, and generally liked what they had to offer.Read More

Wearables

Proximity Hat presses users' heads to guide them

We've already seen a number of systems designed to alert blind users to objects in their path, and most of those systems use cues such as audio tones or vibrations. A scientist at Germany's Karlsruhe Institute of Technology, however, has taken another approach. Florian Braun's "Proximity Hat" applies pressure to the wearer's head, in the direction of the obstacle.Read More

Outdoors

The Whip FR-II could be that "stealth snowboard" you've been seeking

To the casual observer, a snowboard is simply … well, an oblong board with boot bindings on it. Cheetah Ultra Sports' new carbon composite The Whip FR-II, however, looks decidedly more high-tech. Reportedly "inspired by fighter jets and exotic cars," it's claimed to offer several advantages over conventional boards – besides looking like something that Batman would take to the slopes.Read More

Aircraft

A pinch of graphene could keep airplane wings ice-free

Both airplane wings and helicopter rotor blades are subject to one problem – they can both ice up. Although de-icing solutions can be applied when aircraft are on the ground, that doesn't stop ice from eventually forming once they're in the air. That's why scientists at Texas' Rice University have developed a new graphene-based coating that continuously melts ice by conducting an electrical current.Read More

Health & Wellbeing

Smart socks keep watch over diabetics' feet

Many diabetics have limited feeling in their feet, and thus aren't aware when pressure is being exerted on one area of the foot for a prolonged period. As a result, they can develop chronic skin ulcers or other injuries, which can in turn sometimes lead to amputations. That's why a team from The Hebrew University of Jerusalem is creating SenseGO – pressure-monitoring electronic socks.Read More

    Advertisement
    Advertisement
    Advertisement

    See the stories that matter in your inbox every morning