Highlights from the 2014 LA Auto Show

Kickstarter

The Aura Christmas lights are powered and controlled wirelessly

Christmas is centered around the concept of light, as people in the Northern Hemisphere are struggling through the darkest parts of winter when the days are their shortest. That’s why Christmas lights are such an icon of the festive season. The tradition is now about to get a touch of wireless magic, as a company called Powered by Aura has developed a system to wirelessly power up Christmas tree lights.  Read More

The Wolf headlight puts out 165 lumens – and can be detected by another rider's Wolf tail ...

Today's LED bicycle tail lights are brighter than ever, which is great when it comes to being seen by motorists. If you're riding right behind another cyclist using such a device, however, its high-intensity output can be blinding. That's why Australian cycling tech firm Augur created Wolf lights. They communicate with one another, and dim to avoid dazzling their users.  Read More

Plan V, by Sydney-based Flintu

Smartphones are more powerful than ever, but they still have an annoying tendency to run out of juice just when you need them most. The Kickstarter-backed Plan V could get you out of such a fix, as it's a small and light keyring-based device that can be used to charge your smartphone from a 9-volt battery.  Read More

The Carbon Black wheelchair is designed to offer a practical and aesthetically pleasing tr...

Since suffering a broken back at age 14, Andrew Slorance has imagined reinventing the wheelchair. Now, more than 30 years following his spinal injury, the broadcast journalist-turned entrepreneur is finally setting the wheels in motion. Slorance's Carbon Black is a sleek, minimalistic design aimed at giving wheelchair users an efficient and stylish new way of getting around.  Read More

MagLOCK pedals retain the rider's shoes using embedded magnets

So-called "clipless" bicycle pedals, in which a steel cleat in the sole of the rider's shoe clicks in and out of a mechanism in the pedal, are very popular with cyclists – they maximize pedaling efficiency, plus they help keep riders' feet from accidentally slipping off the pedals when going over rough terrain. Some riders, however, find them too difficult to quickly snap out of. Additionally, they don't work well with regular, non-cleated footwear. That's why Salt Lake City-based mechanical engineer David Williams has created the MagLOCK bike pedal.  Read More

The Faradair BEHA concept is intended to be one of the world’s quietest, most efficient an...

Touted as the world's first true hybrid aircraft, the Faradair BEHA (Bio-Electric-Hybrid-Aircraft) is a triple box-wing design concept that combines electric motors and a bio-diesel engine. Fitted with a range of energy conservation and recovery technologies, including solar panels on all flight surfaces and high-lift, low-speed flight capabilities, the BEHA is intended to be one of the world’s most environmentally friendly aircraft.  Read More

The Sonic Decanter is designed to improve the flavor, mouthfeel and aroma of wine in 20 mi...

That bargain plonk ordinaire that passes as merely drinkable may soon get featured status at your next party. A startup out of Spokane, Washington, has unveiled its Sonic Decanter designed to improve the flavor, mouthfeel and aroma of wine in 20 minutes or less by using high frequency sound waves to break down preservatives, such as sulfur dioxide, transform the molecular and chemical structure of wine, and accelerate the aging process.  Read More

Hush earplugs are designed to block out noise and to further mask noise with soothing soun...

Trying to get to sleep when there's unwanted noise in the background can be a fruitless and frustrating experience. You could try and block out the noise with earplugs, but sometimes that's just not enough. The new Hush earplugs are controlled by a smartphone and mask noise with soothing sounds.  Read More

British artist Mark Farid is pledging to spend 28 days isolated inside virtual reality

In a attempt to look at how our relationship with technology can potentially change our inherent identity, British artist Mark Farid is pledging to spend 28 days isolated inside virtual reality, seeing only footage of someone else's life. This social experiment called "Seeing I" is currently raising funds on Kickstarter and if successful will see the brave artist lock himself away in a small room, equipped with nothing but a bed, toilet and shower, all the while being completely visible to the public.  Read More

The Helios Bluetooth solar-powered headphones use a photovoltaic panel to draw on power fr...

We first came across the idea of solar-powered Bluetooth headphones back in 2009. Five years later, the proliferation of Bluetooth LE and the capability of today's solar cells has given London-based startup Exod the tools needed to turn the concept into reality. With its Helios headphones, the company is dangling the prospect of a dangle-free listening experience in front of mobile music lovers.  Read More

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