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Nick Lavars

Nick Lavars
Nick was born outside of Melbourne, Australia, with a general curiosity that has drawn him to some distant (and very cold) places. Somewhere between enduring a winter in the Canadian Rockies and trekking through Chilean Patagonia, he graduated from university and pursued a career in journalism. Having worked for publications such as The Santiago Times and The Conversation, he now writes for Gizmag from Melbourne, excited by tech and all forms of innovation, the city's bizarre weather and curried egg sandwiches.
Top Articles by Nick Lavars
A custom heat exchange system built into the lid of IcyBreeze blows out chilled air

The need for an ice cold drink tends to go hand in hand with stinking hot temperatures. And while a chilled beverage can help to soothe from the inside, nothing brings on sustained comfort like a blast of cool air. The team behind IcyBreeze is looking to refresh from all angles with a cooler that works as a portable air conditioner, putting to use the ice-cold air inside.  Read More

The BioSkin that coats the NBF Osaki Building in Tokyo integrates evaporative cooling to k...

The urban heat island effect, whereby the high concentration of heat-retaining concrete and bitumen causes metropolitan centers to be significantly warmer than the rural areas surrounding them, is a common problem around the world. The phenomenon is particularly prevalent in Tokyo, Japan, but among the sea of towering structures stands one beacon of hope. The BioSkin that coats the NBF Osaki Building integrates evaporative cooling to keep its surface temperature down and could inspire new solutions to rising city temperatures across the globe.  Read More

Belize has begun using drones to monitor its coastline for illegal fishing operations

Unsustainable fishing in Belize has placed growing pressure on local anglers and the country's celebrated coral reef systems. Decades of decline has led to the introduction of catch limits and even the European Union blacklisting seafood imports from Belize for a perceived lack of action against illegal fishing. In an effort to better regulate the industry, the Belize Fisheries Department has begun using drones to monitor coastal areas for unlicensed and unlawful activity.  Read More

The popular My Little Pony line has been customized by a hand-picked selection of 3D artis...

While Hasbro's existing catalog is already brimming with toys for childhood recreation, it has just announced an initiative that could bring a new level of personalization to playtime. Joining forces with 3D-printing marketplace Shapeways, the company has launched SuperFanArt, a site that lets fans design and print toys based on Hasbro's much-loved product range.  Read More

Blocking the pathway used by the malaria parasite to export proteins could pave the way fo...

While the World Health Organization (WHO) says increased preventative measures have seen malaria mortality rates fall by 42 percent since 2000, the disease still claims more than half a million lives each year. A study carried out by a team of Melbourne-based researchers has shown that blocking a gateway used by the parasite to export proteins ultimately causes it to die off, opening the door for the development of new types of anti-malarial drugs.  Read More

Recent surgery using a 3D-printed spine cage has been hailed a success

While the impacts of 3D printing are indeed far-reaching, the medical industry stands to gain as much as any from this fast-growing technology. Following in the footsteps of patient-specific surgeries and treatments such as skull and jaw implants, as well as custom-molded mouthpieces for sufferers of sleep apnea is the first spinal fusion surgery performed using a 3D-printed spine cage.  Read More

Casa Futebol would see pre-fabricated homes installed in Brazil's 12 World Cup stadiums

Brazil spent around US$4 billion renovating and constructing its stadiums for the 2014 FIFA World Cup. But with the excitement of hosting the globe's biggest sporting event now having passed, one awkward, but important question remains. What to do with all that infrastructure? Drawing inspiration from the social issues plaguing much of the publicity around the event, a pair of French architects have developed a proposal to re-invent the structures as complexes for low-cost housing.  Read More

The Rampant borrows design elements from two of Roy Stuart's other wooden surfboards

A New Zealand-based surfboard shaper has taken the wraps off what may be the world's most expensive log. Along with a whole lot of sandpaper, Roy Stuart's stunning Rampant wooden surfboard was shaped by 20 years of experience and presents a striking display of craftsmanship. His asking price? A bargain at US$1.3m.  Read More

DARPA has conducted live-fire testing of its .50 caliber guided bullet

With an ability to strike from great distances, snipers present a unique threat in the field of battle. This long-range lethality is not without its complications, however, with accuracy often dictated by wind, rain and dust, not to mention targets that are constantly on the move. Over the last few months, DARPA has been conducting live-fire tests of guided .50 caliber bullets and today unveiled footage demonstrating the project's success.  Read More

FingerReader uses a built-in camera to scan pieces of text, providing audio feedback to th...

Our age-old instinct to point at things we'd like to know more about has inspired a device that assists the visually impaired consume written text. FingerReader is a 3D-printed device that is worn as a ring on the index finger and uses a built-in camera and haptic actuators to read aloud as the user traces lines of printed words.  Read More

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