Loz has been one of Gizmag's most versatile contributors since 2007. Joining the team as a motorcycle specialist, he has since covered everything from medical and military technology to aeronautics, music gear and historical artefacts. Since 2010 he's branched out into photography, video and audio production, and he remains the only Gizmag contributor willing to put his name to a sex toy review. A singer by night, he's often on the road with his a cappella band Suade.
Two expert martial artists, clad head to toe in high-tech articulated armor, going at each other full force with ancient and modern weapons. Staff against nunchuk, Kendo against Kali – the flag drops, the bullshit stops. An all-out, to-the-virtual-death contest to decide who is the greatest weapons martial artist in the world, and which fighting styles are more flash and form than function. That's the concept behind Unified Weapons Master, a futuristic new gladiator sport being developed out of Sydney, Australia. It's the first fighting sport that will be able to give its fighters a virtual health bar to show how much damage they'd be taking if they weren't in armor.
Global trends appear to be moving towards a future where in many markets, car ownership may look like an expensive, impractical and inconvenient way to get around. So what's the next model of personal transport, and where do the big automakers fit in? Ford's new global VP of Research and Advanced Engineering, Ken Washington, sat down in Melbourne for a "crystal ball" discussion about autonomous cars, on-demand vehicles, car sharing, smart parking, multi-mode transport, and how a car company might learn to cater to a new generation of customers that are far more interested in upgrading their phones than getting their driver's licenses.
Lionel Buckett squats barefoot on the stone outcropping that forms a natural verandah to his latest extraordinary creation. Weathered and weary with a shock of curly orange hair, he's looking out across a magnificent, pristine valley in Australia's Blue Mountains range, a view that probably hasn't changed in thousands, even hundreds of thousands of years. "It's an interesting thing with passive solar design," he muses, "that a cave facing north is probably the first passive solar building that humans ever lived in."
The first edition S1000RR superbike saved my butt (and my passenger's) in a big way back in 2011, when this spectacular bit of video
captured the moment a wide-running pickup ran me off the road and onto the gravel. It's only fair that we give the 2015 version the opportunity to save my butt as well, although perhaps this time with a larger safety margin. So we lined up an S1000RR at Philip Island, one of the world's fastest racetracks, and I went out and rode it as fast as I dared. And as impressive as the performance of this 199-horsepower monster is, even more impressive was the way its ingenious safety and ride assist systems prevented me from making a fool and a bum-up lawn ornament out of myself, time and time again.
If you're as fascinated as we are with electric motorcycles, Richard Hatfield is a pretty special individual to sit down with. He's the founder and CEO of Lightning Motorcycles, and the man behind the world's fastest production motorcycle, the Lightning LS-218
. Riding the Lightning bike was amazing and terrifying – check out our full review here
. We don't usually post entire interview videos online, but this one's a beauty. Hatfield speaks at length about the LS-218, the electric vehicle business, the state of battery technology and more.
Last May, when Gizmag first featured the "truly, horrifyingly fast" Lightning LS-218
, I ended by saying: "If I could take any bike in the world out for a test today, this would be the top of the list." Well, after a 17-hour flight halfway around the globe, I have now ridden the Lightning. I have also nearly fallen off it, twice, like a complete idiot. With three times the horsepower and some 70 percent more torque than the Zero SR
, which is in itself an extraordinary motorcycle, the LS-218 is the king of a new breed of electric motorcycles – one designed to take on the world's best petrol bikes and beat them on performance, not just emissions figures. Riding it was one of the most extreme experiences of my young life.
DJI's US$1100 Phantom 2 Vision+ is the best selling camera drone on the market – and with good reason. It's a relatively affordable, relatively friendly and relatively easy to fly quadcopter that arrives nearly fully assembled and is easy enough for a beginner to operate straight out of the box, even if we recommend you fly something cheaper first to get the hang of things. It has a decent quality, tilt-controllable camera that shoots 1080p HD video footage and 14 megapixel photos, and the camera delivers smooth footage thanks to a multi-axis stabilizing gimbal. But it has a bunch of other tricks up its sleeve. Gizmag spends a few weeks with the latest 2015 version of the #1 consumer camera drone.
The United States Federal Communications Commission (FCC) today voted 3-2 to uphold the principles of network neutrality – that is, to force Internet Service Providers (ISPs) to treat all web traffic as equal. This prevents ISPs from being able to throttle or block users' connections to certain websites, or to offer "Internet fast lanes" whereby large websites could pay for their content to be delivered at a higher speed. Open Internet advocates see this as a huge step to protect the internet's current status as a free and open platform that offers equal opportunities to small and large content providers.
After spending a full morning with the 2015 Zero S and DS
on the gorgeous, twisty roads of California, and tucking into a Kawasaki burger for lunch at Alice's, it was time to ride the jewel in Zero's crown: the 2015 Zero SR. While it stops short of all-out sportsbike performance, the SR still unleashes more torque than any petrol-powered superbike you can buy. Enough, as it turns out, to catch an experienced motorcycle tester by surprise. Enjoy the last of our 2015 Zero fleet reviews.
Having become acquainted with the tiny but mighty Zero FX
, and struggled through a thorough technology briefing at the Zero factory
, it was time to try the "base models" of the 2015 Zero range. The Zero S (streetbike) and Zero DS (dual sport) both share the same platform in terms of frame, motor and the giant monolith battery pack. And despite the fact that they're significantly down on power and torque compared to the high-performance Zero SR, this pair of electrics offer a surprisingly good time.