Photokina 2014 highlights

Electronics

The TI bqTESLA wireless charging development kit lets designers integrate wireless power t...

Between Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, and the latest-gen cell phone networks, we hardly ever have to plug anything into our mobile devices these days. That is, until the batteries die. Then we’re rooting through a rat’s nest of USB cables and adapters trying to find the right wall wart and a plug that fits the charging port. Clearly wireless charging’s day has arrived, and Texas Instruments has released the industry’s first Qi-certified wireless power development kit. The bqTESLA kit is meant to help design engineers integrate wireless power technology into devices such as smartphones, digital cameras, and MP3 players.  Read More

The first coils of silicon nanowire on a substrate that can be stretched to more than doub...

Stretchability is not something you'd think of as synonymous with electronics. For this very reason the realm of wearable electronic devices has been limited to devices on clothes with rigid or at best semi-flexible circuit boards or solar panels and watches that can do just about everything except make a decent espresso. The game is about to change with the introduction of a silicon nanowire with elastic properties that could enable the incorporation of stretchable electronic devices into clothing, implantable health-monitoring devices, and a host of other applications.  Read More

Zaca Fire, near Santa Barbara, California, in 2007. Credit: U.S. Forest Service by John Ne...

In the last decade the number and intensity of forest fires seems to have been on the increase around the globe, with massive and devastating wildfires in California, Greece, Russia and Australia. The best tool for fighting these intense wildfires is accurate and timely information. Traditional airborne infrared cameras have long been a vital device for mapping fire intensity though their limited ability to find the heart of a fire through thick smoke poses a major drawback. A new radiometric sensor that works in the microwave range can now pinpoint the heart of the wildfire, even when visibility is poor.  Read More

Panasonic President Shiro Kitajima displays prototype of the VIERA tablet

While the portable form factor of tablet computers makes them ideal for use on the go, as many tablet users have no doubt discovered, they’re also great for doing a spot of web surfing or catching up on friends’ Facebook or Twitter posts while in front of the TV. At CES 2011 Panasonic has announced its entry into the tablet computing space with the VIERA tablet – a device it calls a “tablet-type terminal” specifically designed for just that purpose.  Read More

Samsung Mobile Display is set to unveil a pair of next-gen AMOLED display prototypes at CE...

There’s bound to be all manner of display technologies vying for eyeballs at CES 2011 when it kicks off in Las Vegas next week and two prototype AMOLED displays from Samsung Mobile Display (SMD) will definitely be high on our list of things to check out. The first is a 4.5-inch 800 x 480 (WVGA) resolution flexible AMOLED display concept prototype for mobile devices, while the second is the world’s largest transparent AMOLED display prototype for use in PC monitors and TVs.  Read More

IBM researchers now have an unprecedented understanding and control over the magnetic move...

Racetrack memory is an experimental form of memory that looks to combine the best attributes of magnetic hard disk drives (low cost) and solid state memory (speed) to enable devices to store much more information, while using much less energy than current memory technologies. Researchers at IBM have been working on the development of Racetrack memory for six years and have now announced the discovery of a previously unknown aspect of key physics inside the new technology that brings it another step closer to becoming a reality.  Read More

Researchers at the University of Twente's MESA  Institute for Nanotechnology has allowed f...

In a new, more efficient approach to solar powered microelectronics, researchers have produced a microchip which directly integrates photovoltaic cells. While harnessing sunlight to power microelectronics isn't new, conventional set-ups use a separate solar cell and battery. What sets this device apart from is that high-efficiency solar cells are placed straight onto the electronics, producing self-sufficient, low-power devices which are highly suitable for industrial serial production and can even operate indoors.  Read More

Visitors to CES 2011 will be able to interact with a huge multi-touch Twitter Wall that wi...

Chirpy social networking portal Twitter is about to get a huge Consumer Electronics Show (CES) boost in a few weeks' time. Finland's Multitouch Ltd has announced that it will allow show visitors and exhibitors to interact with the Official 2011 International CES Twitter Wall, consisting of at least six Multitouch Cell 46 displays measuring 3 x 2 feet. Tweets will be fed to the wall in real-time from selected hashtags, including the official #CES tag, and keywords. As well as being able to open individuals posts and move them around, users will also be able to watch videos and view photos, too.  Read More

Holographic ZScape Prints enable natural (no glasses!) 3D viewing and collaboration (Image...

It wasn't so long ago when those wanting to visualize the landscape around them would have to use a topographic map and a fair bit of imagination. Nowadays we are spoilt by the immersive opportunities offered by the likes of Google Earth, or even GPS technology, but there's nothing quite like a holographic image for recreating a 3D representation of the surrounding terrain on a 2D surface. While the digital holographic prints produced by Zebra Imaging are not exactly as pocket-friendly as maps, they are quite simply stunning.  Read More

Researchers have found that electric fields can manipulate a magnetically polarized curren...

Using flexible organic semiconductors, researchers at Queen Mary, University of London and the University of Fribourg have made a discovery that could lead to the simultaneous storing and processing of data on the same computer chip, bringing a dramatic improvement in power efficiency and reduced weight of electronic devices.  Read More

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