Darren's love of technology started in primary school with a Nintendo Game & Watch Donkey Kong (still functioning) and a Commodore VIC 20 computer (not still functioning). In high school he upgraded to a 286 PC, and he's been following Moore's law ever since. This love of technology continued through a number of university courses and crappy jobs until 2008, when his interests found a home at Gizmag.
The Muvi Micro Camcorder is small enough to carry with you everywhere to ensure you’re always ready to capture those unexpected video capture-worthy moments. Measuring just 5.5 x 2 x 2 cm and weighing 50 grams the Muvi is small and light enough to hang around your neck ready to capture VGA (640 x 480) quality video, which is stored on a Micro SD card.
Robots generally aren’t the most expressive of entities, but their faces are becoming increasingly realistic as the number of artificial muscles controlling them rises. Today, a highly trained person must manually set up these kinds of realistic robots so that the servos pull in the right combination to make specific facial expressions, but researchers at the University of California, San Diego (UCSD) are looking to automate the process by giving robots the ability to learn
realistic facial expressions.
The ever-decreasing size of mobile devices might be a godsend for the pocket, but it poses problems for keyboard input. There have been a variety of solutions looking to solve the problem, from the iPhone
’s onscreen keyboard to the Virtual Keyboard (VKB)
that projects a keyboard onto any flat surface. One of the problems with these kinds of keyboards, however, is the lack of tactile feedback afforded by pressing actual buttons. Shrinking the keyboard down to fit on a mobile device of course presents its own problems and manufacturers must weigh size against usability by the chubby fingered. Samsung may have a solution with a folding wing design that would allow a reasonably sized keyboard to fold out from the rear of a mobile device.
Taking a stroll through your average city shopping precinct will see you bombarded with a plethora of advertising messages. Making their particular message cut through the visual noise can be a tough prospect for advertisers and plain old billboards and static signs just don’t seem to cut the mustard anymore. Those looking to grab people’s attention might want to take a look at 3M’s Vikuiti Rear Projection Film, which can be laminated onto transparent glass or plastic to act as an eye-catching rear projection screen.
Writers often keep odd hours and the constant click-clack of keys on a keyboard is likely to annoy any partner within earshot trying to catch some shuteye. Such sleep deprived housemates are likely to be thankful for the Thanko Silent Keyboard EX that cuts the noise down to a mere 44.5 dB, which is 16.5 dB quieter than your average keyboard and roughly the sound level of a quiet library.
Samsung might have claimed line honors with the first 12-megapixel camera phone in the form of the Pixon 12, but LG are snapping at their heels with the LG GC990 Louvre, a 12 megapixel camera phone that got its first public showing at the Korea Products Exhibition in Warsaw of all places.
Researchers are increasingly looking to nature for design inspiration in a wide range of mechanical devices. Doing so allows them to draw on the millions of years of evolution that have resulted in designs offering superior performance and efficiency. Micro Aerial Vehicles (MAVs) is one field that has recognized the maneuverability and performance virtue of nature’s small flyers, with various attempts being made to mimic these designs and produce vehicles that outperform traditional fixed-wing or rotary-wing craft. We’ve seen the development of a tiny a ‘nano air vehicle
’ inspired by the hummingbird, a UAV based on a Pterodactyl
and a six-inch long robotic spy plane
that, like this new design from North Carolina University
, draws on the physical characteristics of a bat.
Sony has released a netbook to slot in between the P-Series
and TT-Series of its VAIO notebook line. The VAIO W-Series is designed as a secondary PC for those that need to do some basic computing on the move – whether it be around the house or around town. Available in white, pink and brown, the W-Series sports a 10.1-inch display and is powered by an Intel Atom N280 1.66GHz processor, 1 GB of RAM and an Intel 950 Graphics Accelerator.
When it comes to severe thunderstorms, every minute of advance warning can be vital. Present methods rely on radar to detect impending storms, but a new technique that uses satellites to measure the temperature changes in the tops of clouds, could predict severe thunderstorms up to 45 minutes earlier than relying on traditional radar alone.
I’m often told I’m lacking in the fireworks department in the bedroom so the Uchiage Hanabi could be just what I need. Produced by Sega Toys, the Uchiage Hanabi is a fireworks projector that lets users display a full fireworks show on their walls and ceilings, complete with realistic sound effects.