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AVL DiTEST DPM 800: dynamic pressure measurement for motorsport

With many auto racing formulae now requiring engines to last many races or a whole season, the new AVL DPM 800 (DPM stands for Dynamic Pressure Measurement) is a gadget many autosport race teams will be keen to get their hands on - it's an in-cylinder pressure transducer that comprises a proprietary Piezo spark plug system with built-in pressure sensor which will enable engine tuning and the accurate gauging of wear rates and potential longevity as the season progresses. The DPM 800 will cost EUR 6550 when it is launched at the Autosport Engineering Show at NEC in Birmingham next week - an absolute bargain compared to what it offers.  Read More

LaCie's CooKey and WhizKey USB keys come with 4GB of cloud storage

LaCie has unveiled the CooKey and WhizKey, two new USB keys inspired by the award-winning iamaKey, both featuring the water- and scratch-resistant gold SIP connectors of their inspiration. The USB keys are available in sizes from 4GB to 32GB, and all include 4GB of online storage with LaCie's Wuala service.  Read More

Your expensive running shoes could be destroying your knees, ankles and hips

It's early January - you're probably looking to work off some of your Christmas kilos and shed that festive spare tyre. For millions of people around the world, that means making a New Year's resolution, buying a new pair of runners and hitting the road for a jog. But a new musculoskeletal study has concluded that the average modern running shoe is significantly more damaging to your knees, hips and ankles than running barefoot - or even walking in high heels. With osteoarthritis of the knee representing the biggest cause of disability in the elderly, this is a serious finding that's worth taking into account if you want to protect your joints.  Read More

Etip gloves with X-Static tips (Photo: North Face)

You are in a freezing cold condition with a thick glove on. How do you use your touch screen GPS, touch screen phone or a touch screen media player without taking your gloves off? Well, you can if you are wearing the new North Face Etip gloves. They feature the company’s "X-Static" fabric on the tips of the thumbs and index fingers which allows you to operate any touch-screen device, without having to take them off.  Read More

A Cozy Cow mattress being used by a satisfied customer

Cows have it hard. They’re bred to be empty-headed, they have to stand outside in the heat and cold, extraterrestrials occasionally do nasty things to them, and ... well, we won’t talk about what ends up happening to many of them. It’s nice, therefore, to see someone cutting the cows a break. Champagne Edition Inc, based out of Alberta, Canada, manufactures mattresses for the comfort and health of cattle. What’s more, they make the mattresses out of old tires, that might otherwise end up in a landfill.  Read More

Cannondale's prototype Simon computer-controlled suspension fork

After five years of development, Cannondale has unveiled a new proof-of-concept prototype that could revolutionize bicycle suspension. Called Simon, it’s the newest member of their offbeat Lefty line of one-legged shock forks. According to Cannondale, Simon’s onboard microprocessor will allow users to customize their ride like never before. If that isn’t enough, it can also send the fork from being fully-open to fully-closed in just six milliseconds.  Read More

Google launches the Nexus One smartphone

Google sees a future where carriers have to compete on price and the quality of their networks, rather than exclusive deals with handset manufacturers like AT&T's lengthy exclusive deal with Apple for the iPhone and subsequent models. The Nexus One is its first baby step toward that future and it's currently available in unlocked form to consumers in the US, UK, Singapore and Hong Kong for US$529. If for some reason you want to be locked into a contract, the only option is T-Mobile, with the phone available for $179 with a two-year contract, with Verizon (US) and Vodafone (EU) options available in the not-too-distant future. Read on for the full details.  Read More

Less than 2 months into its tour of duty as an anti-whaling vessel, the Adi Gil has been s...

Enviro-warrior stealth boat the Ady Gil has reportedly been rammed by a security vessel employed to protect a Japanese whaling ship. The crew of the Ady Gil had been launching projectiles at the Nisshin Maru whaling vessel and attempting to entangle its propeller with rope, when the 1.5 million dollar craft was suddenly approached and rammed by the Shonan Maru, one of the Japanese security vessels. The attack smashed the sleek biodiesel-powered trimaran in half, and it sank, although the crew of six has been rescued uninjured.  Read More

The winner - congratulations to Honda for having the most reliable 4x4 on the road, as mea...

If you’re planning on choosing a roadgoing car based on racetrack results, maybe you’d better think again. With the world’s greatest off-road race, the Dakar Rally, currently powering its way through Chile, it’s interesting to note that the leaders of the event (BMW and Volkswagen) are among the least reliable 4x4 vehicles on the road, where it really counts. Newly released and highly credible information from the U.K. has revealed the most and least reliable pre-owned 4x4 and SUV cars on the market (see the top 10 lists here). Honda’s CR-V won the crown of the most reliable 4x4 by a fair margin while Audi’s A6 Allroad is the most unreliable 4x4 on the road, with Volkswagen’s Touareg and BMW’s X5 placing second and third most unreliable. That’s right folks, despite performing spectacularly in race events such as the Dakar, the VW Touareg is the second most unreliable 4x4 on the market, according to Warranty Direct.  Read More

Hero piccie

While rear-hinged back doors are not new in the motor industry (Rolls Royce Phantom/Ghost and Mazda RX8), the first pictures of the GM/Opel/Vauxhall Meriva have surfaced and the FlexDoors and FlexSpace features seen in concept cars over the last few years are finally set for market launch in a family car (main pic and top right). First seen in the groundbreaking Flexstreme Concept Car from IAA Frankfurt 2007 (bottom right pic), then further refined with the Meriva Concept at the 2008 Geneva Motor Show (centre right pic), the flex theme combines improved access/egress and a suite of features offering a quickly reconfigurable interior and is likely to be welcomed by families which need to cater for several types of mobility with one vehicle.  Read More

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