Computational creativity and the future of AI
Road trains promise safe and efficient travel

Is there anything more monotonous than being stuck in a long line of traffic when you still have miles to go before your reach your destination? Wouldn’t it be great if you could relax and let somebody else do all the hard work? Well if all goes well with a European research project, that possibility might just become a reality. The Safe Road Trains for the Environment (SARTRE) project will look at linking a series of vehicles in a road train, controlled by a lead vehicle, with communication occurring via wireless sensors.  Read More

Esquire's December edition invites the reader to download special software which allows th...

After experimenting with things like origami (May edition) and e-ink (October 2008 edition), Esquire magazine is running a special "augmented reality" edition in December where readers use custom-designed software and a webcam to interact with the pages being viewed and get access to 3D animated video content.  Read More

Piaggio's USB

Piaggio's MP3 was the world's first hybrid three-wheeler and at EICMA this week, it showed what is likely to be the first two-wheeled hybrid – the Piaggio USB (urban sport bike). The combination of a highly efficient, low-emmission GDI (gasoline direct injection) two-stroke motor and an electric motor, the USB is much smaller than it looks in the images and weighs in at just 130 kg. The USB runs 50km (30 miles) on electric only, and returns 1.5 l/100 km (156 U.S. mpg and 188 imperial mpg).  Read More

BMW brings back the six-cylinder motorcycle with its hottest concept bike ever

BMW released stunning images this week of a new concept motorcycle that nobody saw coming, featuring the resurgence of an engine configuration we all thought was long-dead. In recent years Triumph has stamped itself as the master of modern triples, and now BMW has made a clear statement of intent that it's bringing the inline six back to the bike world. The Concept 6 showcases a brand-new 1600cc engine that's four inches narrower than any previous production six, and produces truly prodigious power and torque throughout the rev range. And it's housed in a cafe racer body that has to go down as the sexiest motorcycle design BMW have ever produced. Sensational stuff... We can has production model plz?  Read More

Samples of novel nanocomposite materials tha will be mounted to the hull of the space stat...

If you think the weather at your place is bad there’s no way it can compare with “space weather.” The International Space Station (ISS), which travels at about 27,700 kph (17,212 mph), is exposed to extreme levels of ultraviolet radiation and temperatures ranging from -40 to 60 degrees Celsius (-40 to 140 degrees Fahrenheit). These extreme conditions might not make for great holiday weather, but it does provide a good way to test the performance of new nanomaterials. That’s why samples of new nanocomposites - including an improved form of Teflon - will be mounted onto the ISS’s outer hull in a Passive Experiment Carrier (PEC), and exposed to the rigors of outer space.  Read More

Intel Reader turns printed text into spoken words

Many of us take our ability to read signs, books, magazines, menus and instruction manuals for granted, but for an estimated 55 million people in the U.S. alone who have to contend with vision impairment, dyslexia or other specific learning disabilities, connecting with the world through text is not so simple. That's a big number - almost the the population of UK - and now Intel has announced a solution for this market in the form of new book-sized device that's not your average e-reader. The Intel Reader takes photos of text, converts the words to digital format and then reads them out loud.  Read More

The Bowers and Wilkins Zeppelin Mini iPod speaker system ... same big features as the larg...

No longer resembling a Zeppelin like its aptly-named big brother, the Zeppelin Mini iPod speaker system from Bowers and Wilkins still rates as an edgy, stylish design. B&W says the new sound dock delivers everything listeners love about the Zeppelin - advanced acoustic technology, intelligent design and elegant connectivity - but instead of being an almost prohibitive 26 inches wide, the Zeppelin Mini is a mere 12.6 inches, making it much easier to locate on bookshelves or other tight spaces.  Read More

Bentley's self-leveling wheel badges and other must-have accessories

If there’s one thing Bentley owners detest as much as fingerprints on their door openers it’s recalcitrant wheel badges that refuse to align when the marque has ceased its forward motion. Worse still, they become impossible to read at speed because of their inability to stop spinning with the wheels. Thankfully, Bentley Motors has listened to the anguished cries of its faithful car-owners and has released a range of accessories that include self-leveling wheel badges that right themselves when the vehicle is stopped and can remain upright at most driving speeds. Other accessories include bespoke child seats, embroidered car covers, vented wings and that much-warranted jeweled torch (which shines a “B” so your driver can signal your pilot to lower the stairs).  Read More

A bump on the metallic floor is hidden, but the cloak itself is visible due to surface ref...

Over the last few years we’ve covered the development of “invisibility cloaks” using metamaterials – man-made structured composite materials exhibiting optical properties not found in nature that can guide light to achieve cloaking and other optical effects. In 2006, scientists at Duke University demonstrated in the laboratory that an object made of metamaterials can be partially invisible to particular wavelengths of light - not visible light, but rather microwaves. A few groups have even managed to achieve a microscopically-sized carpet-cloak. Now researchers have developed software that can show what such a cloaked object will actually look like.  Read More

ETA report takes a close look at the real impact of EVs on the environment

“Electric cars should be rewarded for their energy efficiency, not for moving emissions from exhaust pipes to powerstation chimneys” says the UK's Environmental Transport Association (ETA). In a report titled "How to avoid an electric shock - Electric cars: from hype to reality", the ETA has taken a close look at electric-powered vehicles (EVs) and their associated technologies. In what could be a shock to some commuters – and governments - the report states that EVs could potentially speed climate change, rather than reduce it, and might not be as good for the planet as some of the spin suggests. Simply put, it’s not necessarily the cars themselves that will cause the damage, but the way the electricity is generated to power them and how often we drive them. For instance, EVs powered by “green energy” - wind or solar - are obviously superior, but if the electricity comes from coal, hybrids perform better.  Read More

Looking for something? Search our 31,282 articles
Editor's Choice
Product Comparisons