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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.

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— Science

Bats to be equipped with GPS, microphones and possibly cameras

By - July 10, 2012
Given that most bats hang out (literally) in caves and other secretive places, and only fly at night, they’re not the easiest of creatures to study. Tel Aviv University zoologist Dr. Yossi Yovel, however, has a plan. He is currently establishing the world’s first bat colony to be born and raised in captivity. Although the resulting “roost” will be based out of a research facility, the bats will be free to come and go to hunt for insects in the surrounding environment. As they do so, some of them will be equipped with high-tech sensors designed to gather information on their behavior. Read More

Skippy the Robot skips stones for city-bound computer-users

Don’t you wish you could be skipping stones across a mountain pond right now? Well, if you’re willing to wait in an online queue for a while, you could be doing it ... sort of. Idaho’s Sun Valley resort area is currently running a promotion, in which people can use their internet browser to control Skippy – a robot that skips real stones across a real pond. Read More

Hybrid Series iPhone case features removable USB drive

A lot of people like the idea of being able to carry things like photo or video files with them on their iPhone, but depending on what capacity model they have, may not necessarily want to take up memory on the phone with those files. That’s where ego & company’s Hybrid Series USB Case comes into play – it’s a case for the iPhone 4 and 4S, with a built-in USB Flash drive. Read More
— Science

New tech could lead to wider use of drug-delivering microspheres

By - July 10, 2012
One of the more promising developments in the field of medical technology involves the use of microspheres for targeted drug delivery. In a nutshell, this encompasses creating tiny hollow balls that are filled with a specific drug, which travel directly to a specific organ or area of diseased tissue. Once there, the spheres release their medication, keeping it concentrated where it’s needed while sparing other tissue from any harmful side effects. Recently, a team of scientists from Germany’s Max Planck Institute of Colloids and Interfaces devised a new method of manufacturing such microspheres, which is said to offer several advantages over existing techniques. Read More
— Good Thinking

Novel system guides the blind by turning images into music

By - July 5, 2012
Sensory substitution devices work by converting one type of sensory input into another – examples would be systems such as CASBLiP and EYE 21, which allow the blind to “see” by assigning sounds to images. Now, a team of researchers at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem have created a similar wearable device, known as EyeMusic. It “employs pleasant musical scales to convey visual information,” and could one day help the visually impaired more easily perform tasks that the rest of us take for granted. Read More
— Automotive

Experimental headlight system can see through rain and snow

By - July 5, 2012 2 Pictures
Driving at night in falling rain or snow can be treacherous, but not just because the asphalt is slippery – visibility is also greatly reduced, as the driver’s view of the road ahead is obscured by brightly headlight-lit raindrops or snowflakes. In the future, however, that may not be so much of a problem. A team led by Carnegie Mellon University’s Prof. Srinivasa Narasimhan has developed an experimental headlight system that renders most foreground precipitation virtually invisible, while still adequately illuminating the road beyond. Read More
— Health and Wellbeing

IBM Research produces bacteria-killing "ninja polymers”

By - July 4, 2012
Bacteria such as methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) can not only cause potentially lethal infections, but they are also unaffected by commonly-available antibiotics. Even when it comes to bacteria that can be more easily controlled, we are still constantly being warned about the danger of them becoming antibiotic-resistant. Now, however, researchers have discovered a new antiobiotic-free method of killing bacteria including MRSA ... and it’s based on semiconductor technology. Read More
— Health and Wellbeing

Portable cooling vests could save cardiac arrest victims from brain damage

By - July 4, 2012 3 Pictures
Lowering the body’s core temperature has been shown to decrease the likelihood of neurological damage in the event of oxygen deprivation. In a process known as “therapeutic hypothermia,” hospital medical staff will routinely administer chilled water blankets or insert cold drip catheters, in order to protect patients who have just experienced a cardiac arrest or stroke. What can be done, however, when someone has a heart attack far from a hospital? Well, in the near future, bystanders may be able to suit them up with a cooling vest – possibly saving them from permanent brain injury. Read More
— 3D Printing

Scientists create artificial vascular networks using sugar

By - July 4, 2012 2 Pictures
For a great number of people, the idea of being able to use a patient’s own cells to create lab-grown replacement organs is very appealing. Already, researchers have had success growing urethras (which are essentially hollow tubes), and miniature human livers. Before large, solid, three-dimensional organs can be grown, however, scientists must figure out a reliable way of incorporating blood vessels into them – if the lab-grown organs simply take the form of a block of cells, the cells on the inside won’t be able to receive any nutrients, and will die. Now, a team from the University of Pennsylvania and MIT has devised a way of building such vessels, using sugar. Read More
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