Heidi measures her life with the motley things she's done in the name of scientific exploration. While formally educated in biology and chemistry, informally she learns from adventures and hobbies with her family. Her simple pleasures in life are finding turtles while jogging and obsessively winnowing through her genetic data.
Last year, StoreDot made news with its rapid-charging smartphone battery that the Israeli startup claimed could be fully recharged in just 30 seconds, while hinting the technology could be scaled up for fast-charging electric vehicles (EVs). After completing a round of funding for a new EV business unit, StoreDot might just be able to deliver on its vision of EVs that can receive a full charge in just five minutes.
Last month, security researchers Chris Valasek and Charlie Miller made headlines when they remotely hacked a Jeep Cherokee, killing the transmission as a Wired reporter drove at high-speed down the freeway. But with cars representing only a subset of the Internet of Things, it's likely that many companies that had previously never considered whether their products were virtually as well as physically safe will similarly be responding to disclosures of exploits and courting future employees at hacker conventions in the future. Security researchers at DEF CON described the many attack surfaces of today's connected vehicle and pointed to potential improvements to protect consumers.
Like many people who try (not) to use a mobile phone while mobile in an
auto, I have sound- and device-management issues. That's why I welcomed
the chance to try out the Parrot MINIKIT Neo 2 HD, a sleek hands-free
calling and speaker system that uses either Bluetooth or NFC to connect
up to two mobile devices at a time. Useable with or without its app and
either iOS or Android devices, it's a good choice for those who can't
afford a complicated stereo overhaul for their car and need to support
multiple phone operating systems.
Samsung has introduced a new computer monitor that makes use of the Qi wireless charging standard for mobile devices. The 23-inch and 27-inch offerings for the Samsung SE370 have a circular charging station at the base of the monitor that allow compatible phones such as a Galaxy S6 or Nexus 6 to be casually tossed down to power up.
Mcity at the University of Michigan is defined by over 28 acres (11
hectares) of fake buildings, purposefully defaced road signs, and
pedestrians pointedly standing in roadways. While this could tax any
human driver, the Mcity simulation is designed to test the university's
fleet of connected and autonomous vehicles as they interact with an
everchanging research facility that's the first of its kind.
As the latest in Parrot's line of smartphone-operated drones, the Bebop boasts a number of improvements over the AR.Drone 2.0 including a better camera, longer range, and an optional joystick-based controller. We put the Bebop in the hands of several quadcopter neophytes, tested it indoors (which is supposedly one of its strengths), and enlisted its 14-megapixel camera to capture some aerial footage. We also powered on Parrot's new Skycontroller, which adds physical controls and a more powerful Wi-Fi antenna for extended big range and potential FPV fun. So how did it perform?
When Google proposed its Open Web of Things initiative last December, it was seeking to increase interoperability, security, and an elegant user interface in the global movement towards connected smart devices. The company has awarded half a million dollars towards Carnegie Mellon University to develop its campus and eventually Pittsburg, PA into a "living lab" of cheap and ubiquitous sensors, integrated apps, and user-developed tools to work towards Google's vision of an integrated machine future.
One of only two Mk.1 Spitfires still able to fly today has sold for a record amount at Christie's auctions. The gavel fell at £3,106,500 (US$4,784,010) on the painstakingly restored RAF Spitfire P9374, far exceeding pre-auction estimates of £2.5m.
When it comes to creating surfaces, it's a simple task to either make ones that are smooth or ones that are bumpy. But now researchers at MIT have created one that can be both. The 3D-printed surface they have created can be either smooth, bumpy, ridged, or channeled and can dynamically change texture through the application of pressure.
Machine vision and robotic precision have combined in a new way to further fruit fly research. Scientists at Stanford's Bio-X program have developed a robot that can catch and sort the tiny creatures much faster than a human can, though to the flies themselves it must seem like an alien abduction.