Highlights from the 2015 Geneva Motor Show

Electronics

Natural silk can be processed into a material suitable for use as a lithium-ion battery an...

Next-generation lithium-ion batteries may hold more charge for a greater number of cycles thanks to a new material derived from natural silk. Scientists at the Beijing Institute of Technology found that not only does their regenerated silk fibroin material work for over 10,000 cycles but it also stores five times more lithium than graphite, which is the most common choice for the anode (negative electrode) in lithium-ion batteries.  Read More

The large 1,000 x 1,000 mm X-Carve is big enough to work on 'a full-size longboard'

3D printing promises to be the gateway to a world where a person's ideas are literally made manifest. Draw it up on a computer, hit the print button and a short while later, there's what you just designed, sitting before you in the real world. However, 3D printing isn't suitable for everything, with materials issues and desired finish quality to take into account. Enter the X-Carve, a domestic device aimed at the emerging maker market that allows the home-based enthusiast to work in more than just extruded plastic.  Read More

MESH combines a series of smart tags with an iPad app

You only need look as far as the Raspberry Pi to know that a huge number of people are passionate about DIY electronics, and a new kit called MESH (Make, Experience, Share) is intended to make coming up with your own clever projects easier than ever. From customized alarm clocks to trash cans that thank you for recycling, it's claimed to open up a host of possibilities for amateur inventors.  Read More

Custom printed displays can make plants smarter, too (Image credit: Saarland University)

For years now, we've been promised miraculous new flexible touchscreen displays, but the deployment of such technology in big consumer products, like say the LG G Flex, hasn't started any revolutions just yet. That could soon change thanks to a team of computer scientists from Germany's Saarland University who have developed a technique that could allow anyone to literally print their own custom touchscreen displays.  Read More

PiJuice provides the Raspberry Pi with battery and solar power options

Over the three years since its original launch, we’ve seen the small but mighty Raspberry Pi put to use in numerous projects. From phones to touchscreen desktop PCs, the little board has been at the center of all manner of creations, and with the recent release of the second generation Model B, we’re sure to see it put to use even more imaginative ways. PiJuice aims to up the versatility of the system, adding battery power to make it more portable.  Read More

The Pizzicato is a breakthrough in wireless technology – radio frequency transmission usin...

For the first time in history, a prototype radio has been created that is claimed to be completely digital, generating high-frequency radio waves purely through the use of integrated circuits and a set of patented algorithms without using conventional analog radio circuits in any way whatsoever. This breakthrough technology promises to vastly improve the wireless communications capabilities of everything from 5G mobile technology to the multitude devices aimed at supporting the Internet of Things.  Read More

The Uamp is small enough to fit in the coin pocket of a pair of jeans

The speakers on many smartphones can be painfully lacking in detail and bottom end, and really start to distort when the volume is pushed to levels guaranteed to annoy fellow commuters. Listening to music with the help of the built-in headphone jack will almost certainly offer an improved sonic experience, but high quality? Probably not. External headphone amps can help to increase the quality of mobile music devices, but (with some notable exceptions) these can add significant bulk to your pocket. A tiny new headphone amp named Uamp is making a bid for production on Kickstarter and, though small in size, its makers reckon that portable music lovers are in for a clearer, louder and richer listening experience.  Read More

Scanning electron microscope images that show how normal electrolyte promotes dendrite gro...

Dendrites – thin conductive filaments that form inside lithium batteries – reduce the life of these cells and are often responsible for them catching fire. Scientists working at the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) of the US Department of Energy claim to have produced a new electrolyte for lithium batteries that not only completely eliminates dendrites, but also promises to increase battery efficiency and vastly improve current carrying capacity.  Read More

Research into aluminum superatoms may lead to the discovery of a new class of high-tempera...

Scientists at the University of Southern California have made steps toward discovering a new family of superconductor materials that work at relatively high temperatures, with possible applications in physics research, medical imaging and high-performance electronics.  Read More

The Splash Tunes Pro delivers plenty of sound for the bathroom (Photo: Eric Mack/Gizmag.co...

We're really beginning to like singing (or arguing with out favorite podcasts) in the shower, thanks to the Splash Tunes Pro waterproof shower speaker from FresheTech. This small, unassuming suction cup-mounted Bluetooth speaker delivers a surprising amount of sound in a speaker that costs US$70.  Read More

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