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Ben Coxworth

Tiffen's Steadicam Curve gets put to the test

While there may now be a slew of compact camcorder stabilizing rigs on the market, it was Tiffen that offered the first such product three years ago, in the form of its Steadicam Smoothee. Late last year, the company began shipping its Steadicam Curve – a device that's similar to the Smoothee, but optimized for use with GoPro Hero actioncams. I recently had the chance to try the Curve out for myself, to see how good it really is at smoothin' out the shakes.  Read More

MiP balances on two wheels, using the mobile inverted pendulum principle

You may never be able to afford your own Segway, but soon you'll be able to buy something similar for just a hundred bucks. You won't be able to ride it, but it might ultimately end up being more fun. It's Wowwee's MiP toy robot, which performs a variety of activities while balancing on its two wheels.  Read More

TRW's roof-mounted airbag in testing Three years ago, we first heard about TRW Automotive's new roof-mounted airbag system. At the time, the company claimed that it had a "significant production contract" with an unnamed auto manufacturer, that might see the technology appearing on production vehicles. Now, TRW has announced that the airbags will be standard on the new Citroen C4 Cactus.  Read More

The business end of Medrobotics Corp's Flex System

When we last heard about the modular snake robot designed by Carnegie Mellon University robotics professor Howie Choset, it had been used to explore an abandoned nuclear power plant. Now, however, a new line of robots based on it are set to explore something a little more confined – the human body.  Read More

Unwanted toilets may soon have new life, as a component of cement  (Photo: Shutterstock)

An international team of researchers has discovered a potential new use for discarded toilets, along with other ceramic waste such as basins, stoneware and bricks. It turns out that they can be made into a more eco-friendly form of cement.  Read More

The Cavalerie Anakin enduro bike

Dirty, noisy chains and dirty, fragile rear derailleurs are two features of modern mountain bikes that could certainly stand to be made obsolete. Well, the Cavalerie line of full-suspension MTBs does away with both, replacing them with a Gates Carbon belt drive and an Effigear gearbox. Launched last year in its native France, Cavalerie is about to get a boost in profile, as it commences distribution in North America.  Read More

Wocket stores electronic versions of your cards, that only you can access

No one wants their credit or debit cards, or even their NFC-enabled smartphone falling into the wrong hands. While there are already various security measures in development, NXT-ID's Wocket is one of the latest. Described as a "smart wallet," it's designed to securely store electronic versions of your various cards, plus it features a swipe-able physical card that can be programmed for single uses.  Read More

Computers have been teaching each other how to play Pac-Man and StarCraft

While it may be getting easier for humans to teach robots how to perform new tasks, there's still one potential problem – when a new robot is introduced to a work environment, its user may have to teach it the task over again, from scratch. That might soon no longer be the case, however. Researchers at Washington State University have devised a method by which computers can teach each other, freeing humans from having to do so.  Read More

A front view of the 3d-printed UAV airframe

Because 3D printing allows one-off items to be created quickly and cheaply, it should come as no surprise that the technology has already been used to produce unmanned aerial vehicles, or UAVs. Engineers at the University of Sheffield's Advanced Manufacturing Research Center (AMRC), however, have taken things a step farther. They've made a 3D-printed UAV airframe that's designed to minimize the amount of material needed in its construction, and that can be printed and in the air within a single day.  Read More

A new device simulates the way in which the gastrointestinal tract absorbs orally-administ...

Before drugs are tested on humans, they first go through pre-clinical tests on animals. Because humans and animals don't have identical gastrointestinal tracts, however, the way in which the drugs are absorbed by the body often differs between the two. A scientist from the UK's University of Huddersfield hopes to address that discrepancy, with his "gut simulator."  Read More

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