Highlights from the 2014 LA Auto Show

Ben Coxworth

The 2013 Ford Mustang will incorporate Track Apps, a feature that displays the car's perfo...

It may not be the type of thing that would be used for everyday driving, but owners of the 2013 Ford Mustang will have a little something extra for days that they want to take their car out for some exercise – Track Apps. Displayed on a 4.2-inch LCD “productivity screen” located between the tachometer and speedometer, Track Apps will provide enthusiast drivers with real-time data on their pony car’s performance.  Read More

The Radiator Booster is a temperature-activated fan, that draws warm air out from behind a...

The basic idea with radiators is that they should, well, radiate heat out into the room. Given that they're almost always located against walls, however, much of the heat coming off the back of them is just absorbed by those walls. What someone should make is a gizmo that draws the heated air out from behind a radiator, and blows it over to where it will be appreciated. Well, that's what the Radiator Booster is.  Read More

The photovoltaic panels and concrete panels (background) being used in the experimental so...

When it comes to keeping airport runways clear of ice, there are several options, including the use of chemical, thermal, electric and microwave technologies. All of these methods can be expensive, as they require either a considerable amount of electricity, or a number of human workers. Engineering researchers at the University of Arkansas, however, are developing a new system that would use the freely-available power of the Sun to keep runways from freezing up.  Read More

The Tango Bar is a new USB sound bar for Macs and PCs

For those of us who want a little more oomph out of our computers’ sound systems, USB-powered speakers certainly offer a simple solution, although they tend to be less powerful than speakers that incorporate the more traditional 3.5mm jack. Well, today XtremeMac unveiled its Tango Bar – a 10-watt USB sound bar for Macs or PCs, that reportedly delivers twice the output of most of its competitors.  Read More

Scientists from Tel Aviv University are creating what could be much more efficient solar p...

Radio waves are a type of electromagnetic energy, and when they’re picked up by traditional metallic antennas, the electrons that are generated can be converted into an electrical current. Given that optical waves are also a type of electromagnetic energy, a team of scientists from Tel Aviv University wondered if these could also be converted into electricity, via an antenna. It turns out that they can – if the antenna is very, very short. These “nanoantennas” could replace the silicon semiconductors in special solar panels, which could harvest more energy from a wider spectrum of sunlight than is currently possible.  Read More

eButton is a prototype device that tracks the caloric value of users' meals, along with th...

Are you trying to lose weight, but don't like keeping track of your food intake? Well, there may or may not be an app for that, but there is a button. An eButton, to be precise. That's the name of a wearable device developed at the University of Pittsburgh, that incorporates a camera, accelerometer, GPS, and other sensors. These all work together to maintain a profile of not only what the user is eating, but also how much exercise they're getting, how much time they spend sitting around, and other factors that can affect weight gain.  Read More

The OVO-4 is a full-motion, fully-enclosed light aircraft flight simulator, that can be yo...

Chances are, you will never get to try out the new 3D MiG flight simulator. If you have almost US$60,000 that has nothing better to do, however, you can now buy something almost as impressive – the OVO-4 Home Flight Simulator. The egg-shaped capsule contains a full simulated light aircraft cockpit, with three linked 24-inch monitors displaying the output of Microsoft’s Flight Simulator X. Best of all, however, the capsule pitches and rolls according to what’s happening in the simulation – users presumably have to supply their own barf bags.  Read More

Philips has just announced the release of its new ESee pocket camcorder

As smartphones with built-in HD video cameras become increasingly commonplace, the stand-alone pocket camcorder looks like it could be on its way to obsolescence. That’s certainly what Cisco Systems seemed to think, at least, when it recently stopped production of the market-leading Flip camcorder. One company that apparently doesn’t share this viewpoint, however, is Philips – today, the electronics manufacturer announced its new ESee pocket video camera. While there’s certainly some overlap with many camera phones, the camcorder sports several features that might keep it from ending up in the bargain bin anytime soon.  Read More

BiKN is a system that allows iPhone users to track or relocate up to eight items at once

Wondering where you left your dang car keys this time? Well, you might not be if you were using BiKN. Pronounced “beacon,” this tracking system consists of an iPhone case, an app, and up to eight tags that can be attached to items of your choice. Should you not be able to find one of those items, BiKN will help you relocate it. The system will also give you a holler should a particular "item" wander away on its own.  Read More

The Swivl is a camera phone mount that automatically pans and tilts to keep the subject fr...

When I was a kid, it always used to bug me when someone was supposed to be talking on a locked-off “video phone” in a movie, and yet the phone would pan with them to keep them in the shot! Well, like a lot of other things from sci-fi movies of the past, motorized face-tracking webcams are now a reality – albeit, they’re still not very common. As it turns out, however, more and more video calls are being made not from desktop computers, but from smartphones. So, that being the case, how do you go about getting one of those to pan with you? Well, you could buy something like the Swivl.  Read More

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