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Loz Blain

Kopernik connects NGOs with providers of technologies developed specifically for developin...

One of the key factors in running a successful charity is helping the donors feel as connected as possible to the communities they're assisting, and see the difference they can help create. It's part of the feel-good cycle and evidence that the money is going to good use - which is why this is such a fascinating idea: The Kopernik is a next-gen online charity initiative that lets you choose exactly which projects and technologies you wish to put your money towards, then shows you the results in video form as projects are completed. It's also quite an amazing repository of emerging survival and sustainable living technology - from self-adjustable eyeglasses to clean drinking water devices and much more.  Read More

The full story: 2010 Yamaha Super Tenere 1200

Full specs and technical information have just surfaced for Yamaha's 2010 XT1200Z Super Tenere - and it's immediately clear that BMW's R1200GS now has a serious competitor in the big-bore adventure sports category. Apart from its adventure credentials - spoked rims, sit-down/stand-up riding ergonomics and the like, it's also packing some very interesting technology - including a 3-stage traction control module and a super-smart braking system that looks like it might put Honda's Combined ABS system to shame. Extensive detail images.  Read More

The glass tile on the end of the syringe contains live vaccine suspended in dried sugar. P...

Vaccination has pretty much rid the entire western world of some of its worst child-killing diseases - but a lot of these nasties are still causing death and debilitation in developing countries. There's one simple reason: because the vaccines contain living strains of the viruses they attack, they need to be kept continuously refrigerated all the way from production to the point of use - and that's an expensive and sometimes insurmountable logistical nightmare. Which is why this invention could save literally millions of lives...  Read More

Eyeball-tracking earbuds let you control your MP3 player with a glance

How the heck does it do that? Japanese telecom giant NTT DoCoMo has used the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona to demo a very cool new handsfree interface you can use to control an MP3 player using gestures you make with your eyeballs. Sensors in the earbuds themselves measure changes in electrical potential to convert your eye movements to iPod commands. Fascinating stuff... and while using it on an MP3 player might seem a bit naff, there's probably a range of other situations where handsfree, voice-free control options like this could be really useful.  Read More

Noel's loving his job today: trauma testing d3o's advanced motorcycle armour with a very n...

d3o's body armour claims to be soft and flexible throughout the day, but to harden up instantly under impact. As such it's been a big hit in the snowboarding market, where it can make clothing protective and impact-resistant without it looking like you're wearing armour. But now d3o are branching out into the motorcycle armour market - so how does this thin, bright orange wonder armour compare against the traditional thick foam CE armour pads you find in bike leathers? Editor Noel McKeegan attacks Loz Blain with a heavy frying pan to find out.  Read More

The DeltaWing, proposed to replace the current IndyCar chassis

Two of four submissions have now been unveiled by the companies wishing to produce the next generation of IndyCar open-wheel racers, and the most recent one is one of the most fascinating looking racecars we've ever seen. The DeltaWing is a radical departure from traditional open-wheeler design - in fact, the only thing you could really compare it to is the bizarre lovechild of a drag racer and a Batmobile. With its comically narrow rocketship front end, broad rear end and narrow tyres, the DeltaWing aims to outperform the current crop of IndyCars for significantly less money, while delivering extraordinary efficiency gains and leaving a clear airstream for following cars, in order to promote close racing and overtaking. But is the public ready for a car that looks... so little like a car?  Read More

The amfibus in action on the River Clyde

Great Britain's first amphibious bus service has hit a slight snag in testing - a component failure halting the Stagecoach Amphibious Bus in its third crossing of the river Clyde between Renfrew and Yoker in Scotland. Proposed as a replacement for a ferry service that's set to close down next month, the "amfibus" is designed to deliver a 'seamless' trip across the Clyde with minimal transition time between its regular coach mode and jet-powered water crossing mode.  Read More

Dutch scientists develop home sperm counting device

Anyone who's ever had to drum up the courage to visit a male fertility center will agree that today's process for sperm counting is at best awkward, and at worst embarrassing, messy and intimidating. So if you'll pardon the pun, it will come as a relief to many that a "lab on a chip" device is being developed that can let guys do their own sperm counts at home - avoiding the embarrassment and inconvenience, if not the mess. That's gonna be fun at parties. Warning: uncomfortable anecdote after the jump.  Read More

Catch the Wind's Racer's Edge laser wind sensor tool.

Imagine you're a competitive sailboat racer, about to go into the richest and most storied of all sailing races with a squillion-dollar boat and a razor-sharp crew. Now imagine somebody hands you a device that can quite literally map out the wind activity up to a kilometre out in front of you, showing wind speed, direction and turbulence - and giving you the almost superatural ability to adjust your sails and take maximal advantage of a wind pattern before you even reach it. It's almost an unfair advantage, isn't it? Well, this is the situation that BMW Oracle Racing's Russell Coutts finds himself in as the team gears up to take on defending champions Alinghi in the 2010 America's Cup. The device is called a Racer's Edge laser wind sensor, and it's built around a technology base that's being used to optimise wind power generators. We caught up with Phil Rogers, CEO of Catch the Wind, Inc, to find out more.  Read More

Gizcast #13: discussion - Apple iPad, new-age sex toys and the virtual minefield

This week, Loz Blain and Mike Hanlon agree to disagree on the upcoming iPad, we take a look at a couple of upcoming stories on next-gen sex toys, check out the Metal Storm virtual minefield and look at how Thailand is moving to prevent petrol fraud.  Read More

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