Highlights from the 2014 LA Auto Show

Electronics

Armchair quantum wire could be used to create cables that can transmit electricity over lo...

The United States’ copper-based electric grid is estimated to leak electricity at an estimated five percent per 100 miles (161 km) of transmission. With power plants usually located far from where the electricity they produce will actually be consumed, this can add up to a lot of wasted power. A weave of metallic nanotubes known as armchair quantum wire (AQW) is seen as an ideal solution as it can carry electricity over long distances with negligible loss, but manufacturing the massive amounts of metallic single walled carbon nanotubes required for the development of this “miracle cable” has proven difficult. Now researchers have made a pivotal breakthrough that could make the development of such a cable possible.  Read More

Researchers have developed a memory device that is soft and squishy, and not affected by w...

Usually, the last things that most people want to do with a digital memory device are to drop it on a hard surface, bend it, or put it underwater. A new prototype developed by researchers at North Carolina State University, however, is made to stand up to all of those things and more. Instead of the brittle, unyielding materials that are at the heart of most electronics, the NCSU memory device is soft and squishy, and is not affected by wet environments ... “similar to the human brain,” according to one of its designers.  Read More

LG presents glasses-free 3D display LG DX2000 utilizing webcam-based eye-tracking technolo...

Glasses-free 3D displays are getting larger with the 20-inch LG Cinema 3D DX2000 computer display being the latest addition to the glasses-free 3D line of devices. The newest LG Cinema 3D display utilizes similar webcam-based eye-tracking technology as the latest glasses-free 3D gaming laptop Toshiba Qosmio F750, aimed at dealing with the common "sweet spot" 3D technology issue.  Read More

The 'Exposed' speakers are made of concrete, and utilize horn loudspeaker technology (Phot...

We've seen a number of unusual speakers before, such as the Whamodyne glass speakers or Solid Acoustics' dodecahedron speakers, but concrete speakers are definitely something new. It's definitely not a very popular material for audio systems, but Israeli designer Shmuel Linski would like to change that with his "Exposed" concrete speakers, each of which weighs 123 pounds (56 kg). They're just one part of his line of unusual creations, that include a concrete coffee maker and a concrete canoe.  Read More

Manos Tentzeris holds a sensor (left) and an ultra-broadband spiral antenna for wearable e...

As you sit there reading this story you’re surrounded by electromagnetic energy transmitted from sources such as radio and television transmitters, mobile phone networks and satellite communications systems. Researchers from the Georgia Institute of Technology have created a device that is able to scavenge this ambient energy so it can be used to power small electronic devices such as networks of wireless sensors, microprocessors and communications chips.  Read More

Kisai Kaidoku wristwatch (Photo: Tokyoflash)

Tokyoflash Japan has unveiled yet another unusual watch - the Kisai Kaidoku. It was submitted to the Tokyoflash Design Studio Blog by 15-year old Tynan Mayhew from Canada and is the second fan-submitted watch design to makes it from concept to reality. Instead of the traditional numerical face and hands or digital readout, the LCD-based stainless steel wristwatch displays the time and date using flashing words.  Read More

The New Trent iCruiser IMP1000 external battery pack is claimed to have enough capacity to...

Smartphones, tablets and media players have helped to make our mobile existence so much more tolerable - but they all suffer from varying degrees of the same problem. Battery life is always a nagging concern for regular travelers, leading many to carry some form of external portable power source like the Juice Pack Powerstation we reviewed recently. Even though Mophie's external battery pack proved its worth in our tests, we may just have to trade it in for the New Trent iCruiser IMP1000 - which offers over three times the battery capacity in a similar-sized format and claims compatibility with almost every device in the market.  Read More

Adam Hutter, Director of NUSTL, presents Cecilia Murtagh (center) and Gladys Klemic with p...

Personal radiation dosimeter badges are the things that you may have seen people wearing in nuclear power plants, that measure how much radiation is in the immediate environment. Unfortunately, the devices don’t provide real-time feedback – instead, they must be sent off to a processing lab, which determines the wearer’s radiation exposure after the fact. Now, however, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Science and Technology Directorate (S&T) is working on a wallet-sized card that would serve the same purpose, but that could also be read on the spot using a handheld reading device. Called the Citizen's Dosimeter, it could be used to detect the presence of ionizing radiation caused by nuclear accidents or dirty bombs.  Read More

South Korea plans to digitize all textbooks which are in use by Korean schools by 2015 (Im...

South Korean ministry of education has announced a ground-breaking plan to digitize all textbooks in Korean schools and thus completely phase out printed materials by 2015. This opens a huge market for manufacturers of tablet PCs or smartphones as the Korean education ministry has revealed it will spend US$2.4 billion on buying appropriate devices and digitizing content for them.  Read More

Pic3D enables a glasses-free 3D effect, viewable on any screen (Photo: Pic3D)

It seems that those of us who haven't bought a glasses-free 3D gadget yet may have the opportunity to try one anyway. Announced at the Virtual Reality Exhibition in Tokyo, Pic3D is a thin sheet of transparent film, which enables a glasses-free 3D effect after being applied to any screen. Global Wave, the Japanese company that makes the product, claims that it utilizes a lenticular lens system instead of parallax barrier, achieves 90 percent of light transmission, and has a 120-degree of field view.  Read More

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