Good Thinking

Student-designed aid for the deaf converts speech to AR captions

Speech-to-text systems already exist, as do augmented-reality displays. Now, a group of New York City teens led by Daniil Frants (who interned at the MIT Media Lab when he was 14) have combined the two technologies to form the Live Time Closed Captioning System (LTCCS). Once up and running, it could revolutionize the way in which deaf people communicate with the hearing world.Read More


Review: Going orbital with the Wolffepack Metro

A few years back, while making my way under the streets of Paris aboard a packed Metro train, I witnessed a light-fingered opportunist start to help himself to the contents of a fellow traveler's backpack. She had no idea that anything was amiss until the alarm was raised by myself and other passengers, much to the annoyance and obvious disappointment of the would-be thief. Needless to say that ever since that episode I've taken to removing my gadget-filled backpack when commuting and holding onto it. Tightly. The successfully-crowdfunded Wolffepack Metro was designed so that commuters can keep their belongings close to their chests or access a bag's contents without having to remove it from the shoulders. Gizmag has had one in for review and spent the last couple of weeks in full orbital swing.Read More

Glowing fingerprints to highlight criminals

Fingerprinting powders are still the go-to tool for investigators, both real and fictional. However, instead of oils, some fingerprints only leave a residue of amino acids and other compounds that fingerprinting powder doesn't adhere to very well. A new technique developed at Australia's CSIRO not only reveals fingerprints in cases where dusting won't, but makes them glow under UV light.Read More

Super kettle wins Electrolux Design Lab 2015

A kettle that stores steam to help kids learn about cooking and energy in a hands-on fashion has won the 2015 Electrolux Design Lab in Finland. The competition attracted applications from industrial students located around the world, who were challenged to meet the brief of "Healthy Happy Kids." In response, participating students came up with designs generally based on sustainability and technologically-enhanced lifestyles.Read More

Tempescope brings you the weather in a box

A Japanese startup is raising funds through Indiegogo for Tempescope, a sleek-looking device that will fetch the weather forecast from your smartphone and recreate rain, lightning, fog and sunshine inside a clear plastic box sitting in your living room. The idea for the Tempescope first came to its inventor Ken Kawamoto after returning from a holiday in the Pacific Northwest. Wishing to take the skies back home with him, he created a prototype (out of shampoo bottles, a fan, LEDs and a mist diffuser) that could physically reproduce weather conditions in a confined space.Read More

The Chameleon Pen produces multiple color tones

The Chameleon Pen is so-called because it's capable of producing multiple color tones and seamless blending, all using the same single pen. Therefore, the ink which it produces changes color tone in front of your very eyes, going from light to dark as the toner dissipates.
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Tormach unveils a truly capable desktop CNC machine

The maker community is turning into a quickly-growing movement, as shown by the ever-expanding Maker Faires popping up worldwide. This last weekend was World Maker Faire in New York, where Tormach, a company known for making small, affordable CNC machine tools announced an even smaller, more personal mill, the PCNC 440.Read More

Could triple-decker floating farms address future food issues?

With the world’s population expected to hit 9.1 billion by 2050, coupled with the growing effects of climate change on our ability to grow crops, a company out of Barcelona has proposed a solution to feeding the future world. Forward Thinking Architecture's triple-decker Smart Floating Farms would feature 2.2 million square feet (2.04 sq km) of fish farm, hydroponic garden, and rooftop solar panels to power a floating barge, which could be anchored to the beds of oceans, lakes or rivers. The company estimates that each of its floating farms could produce about 8 tons (7.3 tonnes) of vegetables and 1.7 tons (1.5 tonnes) of fish per year.Read More


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