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— Computers

TweakTown's week in review - Gateway's ZX4800-06, Sony Bravia 3D LCD TV and much more

By - May 15, 2010 7 Pictures
There's been a good bundle of componentry pass through the TweakTown labs this week including QNAP's new 4-bay NAS, Gateway's ZX4800-06 all-in-one desktop and NETGEAR's Powerline AV 200 XAVB2001 home networking solution. The TweakTown team also gives us the low-down on the Cooler Master CM 690 II Advanced mid-tower chassis and Sony's Bravia 3D LCD TV. Read More
— Pets

BokashiPetCycle puts your pet poop to use

By - May 15, 2010 2 Pictures
What do you do with your dog or cat poop? Toss it in the garbage? Put it in your compost heap? Hurl it at your noisy neighbors? Well, according to Seattle researcher Lawrence Green, you shouldn’t be doing any of those things. Feces can contain wonderful things like toxoplasma parasites, E. coli, and salmonella bacteria, which can get into the groundwater. In plastic bags in landfills, it generates methane gas and attracts vermin. To that end, Green developed a product called the BokashiPetCycle Fermenting System. It allows you to pickle your pet’s poop, turning it into a harmless plant fertilizer. Read More
— Good Thinking

Diaspora – a distributed, open source, secure social network with Facebook in its sights

By - May 13, 2010 2 Pictures
In what is quickly shaping up as the David versus Goliath fight to watch, four students from NYU’s Courant Institute are looking to take on social networking behemoth Facebook with Diaspora – a distributed, open source social network. They aim to address the privacy concerns that has put Facebook under fire by giving users complete control of their details and content and who they share it with. Through the use of a personal web server called a Diaspora “seed”, users will be able to securely share information, pictures, video and more. Read More
— Automotive

Just how good will autonomous cars get? Watch this!!!

By - May 13, 2010 1 Picture
It's the kind of spectacular driving stunt we expect of James Bond or Frank Martin - slam the Aston Martin/Audi into reverse, plant the gas pedal, wait for momentum to pick up, then flick the wheel to perform a faultless 180 degree pirouette into an impossibly tight parking space. Only celluloid superheroes can drive like this and get it right every time ... oh, and autonomous vehicles. Faultless driving stunts are not normally associated with autonomous vehicles but check out this video because it'll help get everyone accustomed to the concept! Computers will eventually out-drive, out-think and out-perform humans on every level and this clip of autonomous supervehicle Stanley shows that computers out-driving us will be sooner rather than later. Read More
— Inventors and Remarkable People Feature

Video: Is Steve Durnin's D-Drive the holy grail of infinitely variable transmissions?

Ready for a bit of a mental mechanical challenge? Try your hand at understanding how the D-Drive works. Steve Durnin's ingenious new gearbox design is infinitely variable - that is, with your motor running at a constant speed, the D-Drive transmission can smoothly transition from top gear all the way through neutral and into reverse. It doesn't need a clutch, it doesn't use any friction drive components, and the power is always transmitted through strong, reliable gear teeth. In fact, it's a potential revolution in transmission technology - it could be pretty much the holy grail of gearboxes... If only it wasn't so diabolically hard to explain. We flew to Australia's Gold Coast to take a close look at the D-Drive - and it looks to us like Durnin has pulled a rabbit out of his hat. Check out the video after the jump and see if you can work out if there's a catch. Read More
— Science

Save those cigarette butts, and use them to protect steel

By - May 13, 2010 1 Picture
It has been estimated that every year, 4.5 trillion cigarette butts are added to the world’s ecosystem. That would be bad enough if they were simply disgusting, but when they’re left on beaches or washed down storm sewers, they can be lethal to fish. Unfortunately, there’s nothing that can be done with the butts, other than throwing them out... until now, perhaps. Researchers from China’s Xi’an Jiaotong University claim that cigarette butts can be used to make an excellent rust inhibitor. Read More
— Home Entertainment

Designer 3D glasses for the fashion conscious

By - May 13, 2010 3 Pictures
A chance meeting at 35,000ft some three years ago between a movie studio executive and a Polaroid eyewear product development manager has resulted in the first Designer 3D collection of frames that are RealD approved and certified (RealD technology is used in most 3D applications). During an international flight, Rhett Adam from Look 3D Eyewear was given a “heads-up” by a studio exec about the impending 3D onslaught and quickly identified a new market. By the time he’d landed in his native Australia, the then 35-year-old had put in place plans to quit his job and embark on a new adventure. From those humble beginnings, Look 3D Eyewear was born and the company now has four series of passive 3D viewing glasses that come in a huge variety of styles. Say goodbye to looking like a nerd while viewing 3D content. Read More
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