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Michael Mulcahy

— Music

Sangean Fatbox FB-100 lets you take music to the worksite - rain, hail or shine

By - January 10, 2010 2 Pictures
The degraded state of a worksite radio used to be a point of pride amongst tradespeople. The grungier, basically, the better. But one of the exhibits at CES that caught our eye might change all that. The Sangean Fatbox FB-100 has the look of a portable generator but, in fact, is a ridiculously rugged AM/FM radio and MP3 player that also safely protects an iPod against water, dust and the most brutal of treatment. Read More
— Robotics

MIT's robo-fish swims like the real thing

By - October 9, 2009 0 Pictures
What is it with scientists and robotic animals? Did they not have pets as children? This year alone, we’ve seen robot ferrets, penguins, dogs, locusts, moles and bats. And now, scientists at MIT have come up with a robotic fish. Although we’ve seen mechanical fish before, this one is different in a very significant way – the robofish truly mimics the natural swimming action of real fish, flexing mechanical muscles to propel itself through the water. Read More
— Space

Pentagon looking for someone to pick up the trash in space

By - October 8, 2009 0 Pictures
The Soviet Union launched the very first earth-orbiting satellite in 1957, and the world looked on in awe as Sputnik flashed through the sky. Fifty years later, you’d be lucky to see anything. The U.S. Space Surveillance Network says there are almost 20,000 man-made objects in orbit, ninety-four percent of which are non-functional debris. And that’s not counting the hundreds of thousands of bits of junk too small to track. Little wonder the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) has put out a call for someone – anyone – to come up with a way to effectively remove orbital debris. Read More
— Automotive

British Steam team achieves dream: smashes two world speed records

By - September 15, 2009 7 Pictures
Last month, we reported that the British Steam Car had its sights set on several long-standing world records – and we’re happy to report that they’ve smashed not one, but two in the last week of August at Edwards Air Force Base in California. On Tuesday, August 25, they broke the world’s longest-standing speed record with a 139.843mph measured mile and then, the next day, clobbered the record for a measured kilometer with a speed of 148.308mph. Read More
— Aircraft

Boeing Airborne Laser ‘shoots down’ first missile

By - August 23, 2009 3 Pictures
On August 10, Boeing and the U.S. Missile Defense Agency were finally able to demonstrate that the US$1.1 billion Airborne Laser (ABL) program actually works. The ABL aircraft, a modified Boeing 747-400, took off from Edwards Air Force Base and located, tracked and fired on a target missile. Although a surrogate high-energy laser was used – rather than the megawatt-class laser that will ultimately arm it – instrumentation on the target verified the hit. Read More
— Health and Wellbeing

Wireless pacemaker talks to cardiac specialist via Internet

By - August 19, 2009 1 Picture
The world’s very first fully implanted pacemaker, in 1958, lasted three hours before the batteries failed. It was replaced by one that lasted two days. Ultimately, Arne Larsson – surgical guinea pig – went on to receive 26 different pacemakers over the next 43 years. Now, a New York woman has become the first person in the world to receive a pacemaker that allows completely wireless monitoring, transmitting clinical data to her doctor each day via the Internet. And, if anything ever goes wrong, the doctor is alerted instantly. Read More
— Music

SanDisk slotRadio – a thousand songs for 10¢ each, player included

By - August 18, 2009 1 Picture
As flash memory card capacity increases exponentially and prices fall equally fast, manufacturers are looking for new ways to innovate. SanDisk, one of the world’s biggest makers of memory products, has partnered with the Billboard charts in order to compete with music players like the iPod. The SanDisk slotRadio is a small, stylish player that comes bundled with a micro SD flash card pre-loaded with 1000 chart-topping songs for just USD$99.99. It’s certainly great value, but the big drawback is the music won’t play on anything else. Read More
— Automotive

Full steam ahead! British Steam Car hits 131mph

By - August 16, 2009 3 Pictures
There’s something endearingly quixotic – and awfully English – about the British Steam Car Challenge. The team has spent the last ten years trying to successfully marry Victorian-age transport with modern technology in an effort break a 100-year-old steam land speed record. And, on Friday August 7 at Edwards Air Force base in California, they finally beat that world record speed with a run of 131mph – but because the FIA wasn’t present, it’s not yet official. Read More
— Aircraft

Video games finally pay off: Air Force needs more virtual flyers than real pilots

By - August 14, 2009 2 Pictures
There was once a great Far Side cartoon that had ‘hopeful parents’ imagining a newspaper full of Help Wanted ads for skilled video game players. Well, it looks like Gary Larson might have been more prescient than he imagined. The US Air Force has just revealed that, this year, it will train more ‘pilots’ to remotely operate unmanned aircraft than pilots to fly fighters and bombers. Read More
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