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Richard Moss

Richard Moss

Richard is a freelance writer and journalist based in Melbourne, Australia. He’s contributed to Ars Technica, Edge Magazine, Polygon, and many other publications. When not writing or trying to read the entire internet, you’ll likely find him dancing, playing games, dabbling in creative stuff, or learning about whatever catches his eye.

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— Pets

Pura smart water fountain monitors your cat's drinking habits

By - July 7, 2015 18 Pictures

Cats are finicky at the best of times, but when it comes to drinking enough water they really don't seem to know what's best for them. Chances are you don't either. But a Taiwanese startup called Noacare believes it can sort both parties out with a smart water fountain. This new fountain, Pura, syncs with a tag on your cat's collar and an app on your smartphone to keep you up to speed on your feline friend's water intake so that you can prevent health problems before they occur.

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— Music

Automatic music classification system puts songs in their place

By - June 30, 2015 1 Picture

It's a growing problem: a dizzying number of songs get released to online music stores and streaming services or uploaded to archives around the world each day, and those songs need to be categorized. But how? Play the same song to 10 people and they might each put it into a different genre or subgenre. An automated genre identification system developed by researchers in India, which they claim is the best yet, could be the answer.

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— Environment

European climate at mercy of retreating sea ice

By - June 30, 2015 1 Picture

An international team of scientists has found that retreating sea ice between the Atlantic and Arctic Oceans is linked to weakened air-sea heat exchange in the region. This, it warns, could result in a cooler climate in western Europe and an altered or slower Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation (AMOC), which would have knock-on effects for the Gulf Stream and consequently for the atmosphere.

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— Robotics

Mind-controlled telepresence robot to get paralyzed people out and about

By - June 30, 2015 2 Pictures

A telepresence robot developed at the École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL) that can be controlled by thought may give people with severe motor disabilities a greater level of independence. Successfully put through its paces by 19 people scattered around Central Europe – nine of whom are quadriplegic and all of whom were hooked up to a brain-machine interface – the robot handled obstacle detection and avoidance on its own while the person controlling it gave general navigation instructions.

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— Wearable Electronics

New conductive ink makes your clothing smarter

By - June 29, 2015 2 Pictures

A new single-step printing process uses an elastic conducting ink to turn clothing and other textiles into flexible, wearable electronic devices or sensors. Researchers at the University of Tokyo developed the ink, which remains highly conductive even when stretched to more than three times its original length. They believe it has applications in sensors built into sportswear and underwear and that it could be part of a shift toward more comfortable wearable electronics.

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— Aircraft

Eedu may be the drone kit for the rest of us

By - June 28, 2015 10 Pictures

Programmable, do-it-yourself drones are fun. They're cool. But the thought of building one and getting started with flying and programming it can be super intimidating. Skyworks Aerial Systems hopes that its Eedu kit will change that perception. Eedu can be assembled in half an hour with a few simple tools (no soldering required) and it comes with a drag-and-drop development environment that's meant to allow kids and hobbyists alike to be up and running with custom drone applications in a flash.

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— Medical

Reactivation of a single gene turns colorectal cancer cells back into normal tissue

By - June 23, 2015 2 Pictures

Future cancer treatments may target your genes rather than the cancerous cells themselves. A new study found that reactivating a single gene was enough to stop and reverse colorectal cancer (that's cancer of the colon, or bowels) in mice, with a return to normal intestinal functions within just four days and tumors gone within two weeks. The concept, though not the specific method, could lead to new treatments of a variety of cancers.

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— Science

3D-printed objects created entirely from wood cellulose

By - June 18, 2015 4 Pictures

The 3D printing revolution brings with it a harmful side effect: the special inks that it uses are derived (for the most part) from environmentally-unfriendly processes involving fossil fuels and toxic byproducts. But now scientists at Chalmers University of Technology have succeeded in using cellulose – the most abundant organic compound on the planet – in a 3D printer. They were also able to create electrically-conductive materials by adding carbon nanotubes.

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