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Inventors and Remarkable People

Designer Bernat Cuni made one cup a day for thirty days  (Image: Cunicode)

Prolific Spanish designer Bernat Cuni has come up with a whimsical way to help bring the relatively new 3D ceramic printing process into the mainstream. Recently, he unleashed his creative energies on what he termed the "coffee cup-a-day" project to highlight the versatility and immediacy of what is also known as "additive manufacturing" - the layer by layer construction of tangible objects from digital models. The results, while not necessarily the most utilitarian, could be just the thing for the coffee drinker who has it all.  Read More

Hublot's miniature replica of the Antikythera mechanism

Why on Earth would you want to strap one of these to your wrist? It barely tells the time, and it can't take pictures, tweet or connect to your Facebook. In fact, very few people would have the faintest idea what it is, or why you'd want one at all. But for those that do recognize its intricate gears and dials, this tiny, complex piece of machinery tells a vivid and incredible tale. It's a story of gigantic scientific upheaval, of adventure and shipwreck on the high seas, of war and death. A story of amazing intellect, lost riches and impossible chance - a sunken treasure that Jaques Cousteau once described as "more valuable than the Mona Lisa" - and it's connected with an ancient celebrity whose star shone so brightly that he's still a household name more than 2200 years after his death... Read on!  Read More

Both sides of the 1396 Richard II horary quadrant

You just never know what you've got in the shed. This horary quadrant was found in a bag of old pipe fittings in a shed on a farm in Queensland, Australia, forty years ago. Last year the owner of the quadrant was surfing the internet and came across this article where he recognised not just the same tool, but the same stag-coronet insignia that was on his quadrant (he thought it was an astrolabe) signified it was made for King Richard II (of England). He subsequently contacted the British Museum, which identified the item sitting on his desk for the last forty years as a 1396 horary quadrant. It will be auctioned next month and is expected to fetch between GBP150,000 and GBP200,000.  Read More

'Apple has lost a visionary and creative genius, and the world has lost an amazing human b...

Apple Co-Founder Steve Jobs has passed away aged 56. This sad news comes just a little over a month after Jobs stepped down as CEO of Apple, the company he co-founded in 1976. Apple's new CEO Tim Cook summed up the loss in an email to the company's employees today: "Apple has lost a visionary and creative genius, and the world has lost an amazing human being."  Read More

Steve Jobs

Revered by many, hated by some, but respected by most, the indisputable fact remains that Steve Jobs is the most successful business leader of his generation and quite possibly of all time. The numbers are impressive in themselves but the most remarkable aspect of his success is how it was achieved. Though he remains at Apple, the end of his tenure as CEO is the end of an era and an opportunity to try and grasp just exactly what it is he did and what lessons there are for all of us "trying to make a dent in the universe."  Read More

Google and the Bletchley Park Trust have announced a fundraising scheme aimed at restoring...

Search giant Google has teamed up with the Bletchley Park Trust to kick start a fundraising effort to rebuild the records center known as Block C. A Google-supported garden party was held within the grounds of the famous WW2 decoding center last week to start off the restoration fund, which aims to transform the now derelict building into a visitor and learning center.  Read More

Young Aussie designers talk us through the designs that got them to the Australian finals ...

The James Dyson Awards for young inventors are always a treasure trove of fresh ideas and up-and-coming innovators - so we caught up with 8 of the Australian finalists and got them each to deliver us a 2-minute 'elevator pitch' explaining their designs and the inspiration behind them. The videos after the jump highlight some of our favourite entries for this year's prize, including the winners. See if you can guess which of these young contestants took the prizes!  Read More

Google's online Science Fair gives students aged 13-18 from around the world the chance to...

Fifteen Google Science Fair quarter-finalists have been announced as the competition moves towards the 2011 Grand Final in July. These fifteen finalists will be flying to the Googleplex in Mountain View, California for the Google Science Fair event, and final judging will take place on 11th July by a panel of acclaimed scientists. Open to all students aged 13 to 18 from around the world, the online competition is designed to champion young scientific talent and give students the opportunity to showcase their ideas. Three winners will be chosen from each age group, with an overall winner chosen from those three.  Read More

'The peep show because it represents a part of Americana that has been forgotten' (Photo: ...

Hard though it may be to believe for anyone raised since the advent of VCRs, there was a time when people actually had to leave their homes to see adult movies. Going to sleazy cinemas ended up being the main option, although it was predated by a little something known as the peep show machine. Now largely forgotten, these pieces of erotic entertainment history were once a common sight in penny arcades, fair grounds and other sometimes-questionable locales. So, what would one would look like if it were built using today's technology? California's Michael Ford decided to find out.  Read More

Max Mathews devoted most of his life to learning how computers could aid musicians in perf...

Renowned computer generated music innovator Max Mathews has died at the age of 84. Back in 1957 Mathews wrote the program that enabled an IBM 704 mainframe computer to play a composition lasting 17 seconds – an achievement recognized as one of the first examples of digital synthesis of music on a computer. For the next 54 years Mathews pioneered the field of digital audio research and devoted most of his life to learning how computers could aid musicians in performance.  Read More

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