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Nick Gilbert

Science

Superhydrophobic coating allows water to boil without bubbles

You know that thing that water does when it boils? The thing with the bubbles? Turns out, it doesn't really need to do that at all, with scientists finding a way to make boiling water a completely bubble-free zone. Researchers from Northwestern University, King Abdullah University of Science and Technology in Saudi Arabia and Melbourne University in Australia teamed up to prevent water from bubbling when it boils by using tiny spheres coated with a hydrophobic material.Read More

Chorus: The digital assistant powered by people, not computers

Computer scientists are looking to improve on the performance of artificially intelligent personal assistants by devising a way to use the power of a human crowd to chat you instead. The system, known as Chorus, was designed by researchers at the University of Rochester to allow a number of users to act as a single agent that converses with a single end user in real time. Read More

Games

Exploding watermelons with your mind

Games that are played by using your hands are so last year – why not do something a little more fun? For instance, why not explode watermelons ... with your mind? One Kentucky-based hackerspace took that idea and ran with it, turning a mind-reading toy into a melon blasting machine.Read More

Computers

Five Samsung Windows 8 "Ativ" devices break cover

With Windows 8 due to be officially launched in October, Samsung has pulled back the curtain on their ATIV suite of devices based on Microsoft's OS, including two hybrid tablets, at the IFA trade show in Berlin. The Smart PC and Smart PC Pro hybrid tablet/laptops, the Tab tablet, and the S smartphone were all shown off, with the fifth, a Windows 8-flavored refresh of the Notebook Series 9, also getting some air time.Read More

Science

Researchers demonstrate first backdoor "hack" into the human brain

Once the preserve of science fiction, brain-computer interfaces (BCIs) have advanced to the point where they can even be found in novelty headwear, which only makes an achievement of an international team of scientists more frightening. Using an off-the-shelf Emotiv BCI costing only a few hundred dollars, the team has shown that it's possible to "hack" a human brain and pull things like bank details straight out of your skull. Read More

Mobile Technology

Smartphone penetration breaks 50% barrier in the U.S.

Data collected from telco companies and network operators shows that smartphone penetration has broken the 50 percent barrier in the United States, with these devices now outnumbering their feature phone brethren for the first time. According to a report compiled by market consultancy Chaten Sharma, smartphones overtook feature phones during Q2 of this year - a push largely driven by Android and iOS-enabled devices.Read More

Automotive

Europe making Autonomous Emergency Braking tech compulsory in new cars

The European Commission plans to make Autonomous Emergency Braking systems (AEBs) a mandatory requirement in all new vehicles on the Continent by 2014. These systems typically use one or a combination of radar, lidar or video-recognition technologies to measure the distances between vehicles, warn drivers if they get too close, and to then engage the brakes if the driver fails to take any action.Read More

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