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Infrastructure

A group of students have created a unique material that they say could be sealed in bags w...

Have you ever mixed corn starch with water? If you have, you probably noticed how it oozed like a liquid when flowing across a surface, yet hardened like a solid if you suddenly struck it. That’s because the corn starch/water mixture is what’s known as a non-Newtonian fluid – the particles it’s composed of slide past one another easily when moving slowly, but jam against each other when forced to move quickly. Recently, a group of students from Cleveland’s Case Western University encased such a fluid within sturdy bags, to create a simple product that could be used to temporarily fill potholes in roads.  Read More

Flashing arrows displayed on the road indicate the vehicle's future path

Amongst the modern furniture and “design-art” on display at this year’s Design Miami/ international design show visitors were also treated to the Bjarke Ingels Group’s (BIG) vision for the future of urban mobility. Dubbed “Urban Future,” the international architectural firm’s installation, created with the cooperation of Audi, provided a glimpse of how its concept for the city street of the future that networks with vehicles and pedestrians might actually work.  Read More

A Honda FCX Clarity being refueled at the UK's first open access hydrogen filling station,...

If you live in Britain and are debating whether or not you should purchase a hydrogen-powered Honda FCX Clarity, well ... your decision may now be a bit easier to make. In order to encourage development of fuel cell vehicles such as the FCX, Honda has just opened the UK’s first open access station for hydrogen-powered vehicles. It’s located on the grounds of Honda of the UK Manufacturing in Swindon, and everyone who needs a little hydrogen in their lives is welcome.  Read More

The LA bike plan includes the Backbone, Neighborhood, and Green (scenic) networks

As the Missing Persons song goes, “nobody walks in LA.” But with the release of the 2010 Los Angeles Bicycle Plan, the city hopes to make it easier to ride there. As part of the city’s commitment to transform LA from an auto-centric metropolis to a city with a multi-modal transportation system, the City of Los Angeles has released the draft 2010 Los Angeles Bicycle Plan, which designates 1680 miles (2700 km) of bikeway facilities and proposes three new bicycle networks that will crisscross the city.  Read More

2:1 Industrial Design proposes laying tracks on existing roadways and creating a novel ele...

Like many other regions of the world, Brazil has a transport congestion problem. Once seen as a city issue, traffic jams have spread to smaller and smaller towns. The designers of the OU concept propose a possible solution where existing roadways have rails installed and drivers of specially kitted-out vehicles can join road trains to flow through otherwise congested areas at a constant pace. The electric OU vehicle's wheels would operate in either an open configuration – for normal driving – or closed, for rail travel.  Read More

5.3 billion mobile subscribers sent 6.1 trillion text messages in 2010

During the first decade of the 21st century, information and communication technologies (ICTs) came within reach of most of the world's people. As part of World Statistics Day, the United Nations commissioned the International Telecommunications Union (ITU) for current data and statistics on ICTs. The resulting report: The World In 2010: ICT Facts and Figures provides an insight into just how phenomenal the growth of ICTs have been over the past few years.  Read More

The CAFE Foundation proposes the development of small, neighborhood airports, at which aut...

A little over a year ago, we told you about NASA’s Green Flight Challenge. The Space Agency is seeking designs for low-cost, quiet, short take-off personal aircraft, that require little if any fossil fuel. The winning design, to be decided next July, will win US$1.6 million in production funds. The competition is being run by NASA’s light-aircraft partner CAFE (Comparative Aircraft Flight Efficiency), which envisions the resulting Suburban Air Vehicles (SAVs) taking off and landing at small neighborhood “pocket airports.” At last week’s Future of Electric Vehicles conference, CAFE president Dr. Brien Seeley outlined just how those airports would work.  Read More

Nokia Siemens Networks has recorded data transmission speeds of 825 Mbps over copper using...

Just when the future of broadband appears to be tipped towards the mass roll-out of optics, Nokia Siemens Networks proves that there's still life in the old copper wires yet. Using a virtual channel to supplement physical copper wire, data transmission speeds of 825 Mbps were recorded. Okay, so it was only over a distance of 400 meters (just over 1,312 feet) but the circuit managed to sustain 750 Mbps when the distance was increased to 500 meters (about 1,640 feet), with the technology promising broadband speed increases of between 50 and 75 per cent over existing bonded copper lines.  Read More

Fraunhofer is working on technologies to address the world water shortage

The Fraunhofer research organization is concerned about the world’s fresh water supply. According to the statistics put forth by groups like the World Commission on Water for the 21st Century, that concern is justified – over 450 million people worldwide currently face severe water shortages, and as much as two thirds of the world’s population could be “water-stressed” by 2025. Likewise, a study by the UN has predicted that water is due to become more strategically important than petroleum; in other words, wars could be fought over it. In reaction to scenarios such as these, 14 of Franhofer’s research divisions have joined together to form the Fraunhofer Alliance SysWasser, with the aim of developing sustainable water system technologies. The group will be presenting six of these technologies at this week’s IFAT/Entsorga water trade fair in Munich. Here’s a quick look at each one.  Read More

ICANN has joined forces with the U.S. Department of Commerce and Verisign Inc to try and m...

The organization that oversees the Internet's unique identifier naming system has joined forces with the U.S. Department of Commerce and secure infrastructure specialist Verisign Inc. to try and make our online lives a little safer. The Internet Corporation For Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) has revealed that a solution has been found to a flaw in the security of the domain name system. The collaboration has announced the deployment of a new security extension to make sure that our website addressing requests are not hijacked by dishonest types looking to steal our savings.  Read More

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