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Jack Martin

— Automotive

Reinventing the wheel – the airless tire

By - November 19, 2008 11 Pictures
UPDATED November 20, 2008 One of the more fascinating developments in the history of the automotive tire is the modern concept of the airless tire. Dunlop produced the first pneumatic tire for bicycles in 1888 and Michelin did likewise for cars in 1895, and for the last century, pneumatic tires have ruled. Michelin announced its airless Tweel technology three years ago (Gizmag’s biggest story ever with more than a million page views) and won the Intermat Gold Medal for Innovation in 2006, though we have yet to see a commercially available automotive product from the French giant. Now a new airless tire using a flexible, honeycomb-like internal structure could again prove to be a disruptive technology in one of the world’s largest industries. With development funded by the U.S. DoD, the initial aim of the project was to replace the Achilles heel of the military vehicle, but now the technology looks like going commercial for the rest of us. Read More
— Good Thinking

The worker assist device - coming to a workplace near you?

By - November 8, 2008 4 Pictures
November 9, 2008 One of the most interesting and perhaps landmark technology projects we’ve ever seen is Honda’s experimental walking assist device - the second partial exoskeletal device exhibited by the company this year. The original machine shown by Honda was designed to assist weak leg muscles in the elderly. The second iteration is being trialled in Honda factories as a worker assistance device to support bodyweight when performing tasks on the workshop floor. This second experimental machine could have vast ramifications for skilled factory workers around the globe – if human efficiency in complex tasks can be improved, such robotic assistance devices could make a lot of sense on the balance sheet. Read More
— Computers

Apple’s new MacBook Family

By - October 14, 2008 16 Pictures
October 14, 2008 Apple today unveiled an all new MacBook family with a new construction method (from a single block of aluminum), high-performance NVIDIA graphics, instant-on LED-backlit displays with the most significant being the introduction of large glass trackpads that support an array of multi-touch gestures that will further enhance Apple’s advanced notebook interface, making the traditional button part of the trackpad. There was also a 24-inch widescreen LED Cinema Display designed to easily connect a MacBook and desktop peripherals. Read More
— Mobile Technology

The OLO iPhone-powered Netbook

By - October 13, 2008 2 Pictures
The suspense surrounding Apple’s rumored Netbook announcement is quite extraordinary. The collective mood swing towards more convenient and usable wireless devices now seems overwhelming. People want more productivity on the move without the weight ,and the recent eeepc has only served to warm up the crowd for whatever Apple might be ready to announce later today. Just to add intrigue, a start-up named OLO Computer is getting set to launch what appears to be an iPhone-powered notebook/netbook which uses the iPhone as the CPU and the iPhone docks flat with the keyboard surface to offer its touch-screen as a trackpad. Read More
— Mobile Technology

Eee PC S101 - genuinely mobile Net PC

By - October 12, 2008 2 Pictures
October 13, 2008 With rumours suggesting Apple has an ultralight computer ready for announcement tomorrow, the category is certain to capture a lot of attention over the coming months. One recent entrant in the cateogrythat looks really promising is the ASUS Eee PC™ S101, an exquisitely designed Brown, Champagne or Graphite netbook that weighs just a kilogram and is slimmer than most fashion magazines at just 1.8 cm. It is expensive but with 802.11n, Bluetooth V2.0, an encrypted 20 GB Internet storage facility known as Eee Storage, and a 64GB Solid State Drive (SSD) it is stylish and above all, easily portable. Read More
— Automotive

The Miniature High-efficiency Motorhome

By - October 12, 2008 25 Pictures
Romahome is an acknowledged master of the mini motorhome genre, having won Micro Motorhome of the Year for the last three years straight. It’s latest van however, takes things to a new level, and is about as small as you can make a motorhome and still sleep a fellow 6 ft 4 in his socks. Based on the equally groundbreaking micro-commercial Citroen Nemo recently named International Van of the Year, the R10 is a single berth motorhome that can be used for everyday transport. The R10 Solo creates a whole new genre of small, efficient, minimalist motorhomes that will be much faster point-to-point than their fat-bottomed brethren and deliver 63mpg/4.5 l/100 km on the combined cycle. Powered by an ultra-economical 70hp Citroen1.4HDi diesel engine with Sensodrive automatic, the Nemo’s unique operational, running-cost and environmental benefits pale beside the places the R10 can go - congested streets and multi-storey car parks are no problem for a vehicle just 12 ft 7 ins in length with a height of 6 ft 3 ins. When the roof is elevated, the Romahome gives an internal height of 6 ft 6 ins. Read More
— Automotive

Chrysler shows new Chrysler, Jeep and Dodge Electric Vehicles

By - September 24, 2008 16 Pictures
If what you’re doing doesn’t work, do something different. There have been quite a few people concerned for the future of the iconic Chrysler brand since it was cut loose from the Daimler Chrysler organization but the first signs of genuinely radical change arrived today when it announced that it has new production-intent, advanced electric-drive technology packaged in three different vehicles – one for each of its brands, Chrysler, Jeep and Dodge. Chrysler will select one electric-drive model to be produced in 2010 for consumers in North American markets, and European markets after 2010. A new consumer web site has been created for Chrysler’s electric vehicles. Read More
— Computers

Adobe’s Powerful InDesign CS4

By - September 24, 2008 8 Pictures
Adobe’s Creative Suite has set the benchmark in recent times for design and development software for virtually every creative workflow. Each new iteration of the suite of integrated products has been landmark and the new CS4 appears likewise - the new Creative Suite 4 product line advances the creative process across print, Web, mobile, interactive, film and video production. With new levels of integration and expressiveness for Flash technology across the entire product line, Adobe’s Creative Suite 4 software release includes Design, Web, Production Premium, the full “Master Collection”, as well as 13 point products, 14 integrated technologies and seven service. Read More
— Good Thinking

Lead Me Not Into Temptation

By - September 24, 2008 1 Picture
September 24, 2008 Impulse control is becoming increasingly important on a personal and global scale for solving problems as diverse as obesity, smoking, compulsive shopping and even global warming. But if appealing to our intellect rarely works, what does? Psychologist Dr Max Sutherland looks at the issue and writes that rather than engage the mind in combat, take advantage of how it works. Don’t shop when you’re preoccupied or hungry, do good deeds after, but not before, shopping. And shop well in advance. Another fascinating article full of psychological tips to help control impulses and resist temptation. Read More
— Automotive

Volvo testing “birds-eye-view” awareness system for truck drivers

By - September 23, 2008 2 Pictures
The concept of computer-synthesized bird’s eye view for drivers has been gaining a lot of ground with Japanese automotive manufacturers in recent times, with many concept cars emanating from Japan featuring the advantages of an at-a-glance situational awareness solution. Now Volvo has developed its own Overview Surveillance System (in conjunction with Toshiba), which gives drivers a view of the vehicle and its surroundings from above. It is designed primarily to support the driver in slow speed situations, such as when backing, parking or driving down narrow city streets. With the advanced driving assistance system installed, the driver can quickly grasp the situation for greater control and safety. Read More

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