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Science

Powering insect cyborgs with an implantable biofuel cell

Research into developing insect cyborgs for use as first responders or super stealthy spies has been going on for a while now. Most research has focused on using batteries, tiny solar cells or piezoelectric generators to harvest kinetic energy from the movement of an insect’s wings to power the electronics attached to the insects. Now a group of researchers at Case Western Reserve University have created a power supply that relies just on the insect’s normal feeding.Read More

Environment

Eco Wave Power developing two new wave-power devices

Israel's Eco Wave Power is just entering the second phase of proving its new wave energy harvest and conversion system that's claimed to produce cheaper energy than existing coal-fired power plants. Energy is captured by the influence of rising and falling waves on two proprietary float designs called the Wave Clapper and Power Wing, which are installed on existing, stable structures. The floats are said to be capable of gathering energy from both high and low waves, which is fed through undersea cabling to a land-based power plant for conversion to usable electricity.Read More

Home Entertainment

Always Innovating's HDMI dongle turns any HDTV into a "Smart" TV

Now you don't necessarily need to own a “Smart TV” in order to get Android apps on your television. Always Innovating will be showing off its HDMI dongle at CES this week, a compact device that can turn any HDTV into a Smart TV. Essentially Always Innovating's HDMI Dongle is a portable version of a set-top box. The device is based on the Texas Instruments Cortex-A9 OMAP 4 ,which can run from 1GHz to 1.8GHz depending of the configuration, and offers 1GB of RAM as well as a micro SD card for local storage.Read More

Good Thinking

Canadian man uses passport on iPad to cross U.S. border

While driving from Quebec to the United States, a Canadian citizen named Martin Reisch suddenly realized the fear of every world traveler: he'd completely forgotten his passport at home. Going back for it would've meant several hours extra driving time, so using a little quick thinking and a huge amount of luck he pulled up to the U.S. border holding an iPad showing a full-sized image of his passport that he had taken five years previous and had saved to a Dropbox folder. After what must have been a nerve-racking five minutes while border officials looked over the document, Reisch was amazingly allowed through into Vermont, even receiving a "Happy Holidays" from the border officer for the trouble. Read More

Sports

Douchebag designed to transport skis with ease

Douche bags at ski hills aren't a new phenomenon. Whether it's the aggressive adrenalin junkies yelling at you from the lifts in hopes you'll fall in glorious YouTube-ranking fashion or the rich folks in $5,000 fur-lined one-piece ski suits, they're everywhere. Now there's a new kind of a Douchebag that is designed to actually make your ski day more fun. Douchebags in this case is simply a clever (it got your attention, didn't it?) name for a newly launched ski accessories company whose first product is a feature-filled ski bag that should make getting to and from the slopes - whether it be flying and shuttling to an exotic resort or just driving to your local hill - easier and more efficient.Read More

Mobile Technology

SolarKindle promises three months of unplugged reading time

What if you could read on your Kindle for three months straight? SolarFocus will be showing off a Kindle case at CES this week designed to do just that. Called SolarKindle, the case has a solar panel built into its front that allows you to charge your Kindle poolside, or while you're involved in other outdoor activities, delivering three months of reading time and over 50 hours of reading lamp use on a single charge. Read More

Aircraft

Cameras and iControlled helicopters take flight from Swann

An iPhone app and a camera take flight in the new remote control helicopters from Swann. Three models include i-Fly Micro Lightning, Sky Eye and Black Swan. The i-Fly Micro Lightning lets you control the helicopter via an app for the iPhone, iPod or iPad. The Sky Eye and Black Swann models house a camera capable of taking still and video images.Read More

Good Thinking

Radar system could detect people who fall onto train tracks

Although you may never have seen it happen yourself, it isn’t all that uncommon for large objects – including people – to fall onto the tracks at subway or railway platforms. While security personnel viewing CCTV feeds will catch some of these accidents, the cameras’ shots are sometimes obscured by people, poor lighting, or even the trains themselves. The results can range from lengthy delays in rail service, to fatalities. Now, however, researchers working on a project for the Université Lille Nord de France have developed a system that uses radar to automatically detect and identify objects that fall onto the tracks. When installed at a platform, the system could then shut off power to the tracks, and notify oncoming trains.Read More

Science

Salmon DNA used in data storage device

Salmon ... they’re good to eat, provide a livelihood for fishermen, are an important part of their ecosystem, and now it seems that they can store data. More specifically, their DNA can. Scientists from National Tsing Hua University in Taiwan and the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology in Germany have created a “write-once-read-many-times” (WORM) memory device, that combines electrodes, silver nanoparticles, and salmon DNA. While the current device is simply a proof-of-concept model, the researchers have stated that DNA could turn out to be a less expensive alternative to traditional inorganic materials such as silicon.Read More

Sports

De Soto uses limestone for its T1 Wetsuits

Over the past few years an unlikely material has found its way into wetsuits: limestone. One would think that using rock to create rubber might cause a wearer to sink, but the porous yet closely-packed cells found in a limestone-based rubber is said to make the wearer more buoyant. De Soto Sports, a San Diego-based company that makes clothing and gear for triathlons, developed its own brand of limestone-based rubber, GreenGoma, to use in its wetsuits. Starting with the 2012 line, which first hit stores this past fall, all of the company's T1 wetsuits are made with GreenGoma, which eliminates the use of petroleum products in the line.Read More

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