Highlights from the 2014 LA Auto Show

Prototype

Backers of the RRE Kickstarter will be tasked with helping get the Asimov RA3 ready for a ...

If you’ve ever yearned to take part in a space program but haven’t been given the chance, then perhaps you should take a look at the Remote Rover Experiment (RRE) Kickstarter campaign. Created by a team named Part-Time Scientists (PTS), the project aims to involve the general public in testing technology which will eventually be sent to the moon. Available pledge points include the option to remote-pilot an Asimov R3A moon rover in an Earth-based location modeled after the Apollo 17 landing site, and the purchase of an Asimov R0 moon rover self-assembly kit.  Read More

The Z-1 space suit has a rear entry hatch that can latch to a spaceship or rover, eliminat...

The current US space suit used by NASA is a dinosaur. Designed in 1992, it was only ever intended to be used by crews aboard the Space Shuttle and the International Space Station. That may have been good enough in the days of 14 kps modems, but with eyes turning increasingly toward missions to the Moon, Mars and the asteroids, space explorers need something better. That’s why NASA is designing its first new suit in twenty years. Developed by NASA’s Advanced Exploration Systems (AES), the Z-1 prototype space suit currently undergoing vacuum testing at the Johnson Space Center is a wearable laboratory of new technology. And it’s a hatchback.  Read More

Five Norwegian engineering students from the University of Life Sciences in Oslo have desi...

Five Norwegian engineering students from the University of Life Sciences in Oslo have come together to design and build an electric motorcycle that's a little different from the rest of the field. Rather than construct the vehicle around a steel or aluminum frame (like the Brutus we covered last year, for instance), the Roskva bike features a carbon fiber monocoque frame that reportedly weighs less than 25 kg (55 pounds). Carbon fiber is also the material of choice for the wheels, single-sided swingarm and enclosed driveshaft.  Read More

A new “spintronic” OLED glows orangish exposed to a magnetic field from the two poles of a...

We’ve seen a number of next-generation display technologies emerge in recent years, such as Sony’s “Crystal LED,” Uni-Pixel’s time-multiplexed optical shutter (TMOS) technology, and quantum dot LED (QLED) display technology from LG and QD Vision, and now there’s another one to add to the mix. While displays based on the new “spintronic” OLED technology invented by physicists at the University of Utah are still some years off, the researchers say they should be brighter, cheaper and more environmentally friendly than the LEDs found in the current crop of TVs, computer displays, traffic lights and other electronic devices.  Read More

MIT’s Media Lab has proposed a new technique for multiple-perspective and glasses-free 3D ...

Though 3D movies have been around for a while, the experience of visiting a cinema to catch the latest blockbuster is dampened by unwieldy glasses and the limitation of only one fixed perspective being offered to all. The illusion of depth is present, but this is far removed from the hologram-like, multiple-perspective experience which would truly wow movie-goers. MIT's Media Lab’s Camera Culture group proposes a new approach to 3D images that promises glasses-free multiple-perspective 3D. Perhaps best of all though, MIT's technique uses inexpensive existing LCD technology, clearing the way for the tech to be implemented into TV's.  Read More

The prototype athlete-specific sprint shoe created by Luc Fusaro using 3D printing technol...

With sprinting events at the elite level decided by fractions of a second, athletes are always on the lookout for anything that can provide even the smallest advantage over their rivals. We recently looked at Nike’s Pro TurboSpeed suit that is claimed to cut down a runner’s wind resistance by using golf ball-like dimples, but footwear plays an equally, if not more, important role in an athlete’s performance. Now French engineer and designer Luc Fusaro has employed 3D printing technology to create lightweight sprint shoes that are customized for individual athletes that could prove the difference between winning and losing.  Read More

Terrafugia flying car during Phase I flight test (Photo: Terrafugia)

Six years after the initial announcement that Terrafugia, Inc. would develop a "roadable airplane", the Transition has completed the first phase of flight testing. The flight testing, carried out at Plattsburgh International Airport in northern New York State, assessed the light sport aircraft's full performance envelope. The Transition prototype was reported to perform "exceptionally well", allowing the testing to be carried out quickly.  Read More

The musical umbrella was created by Berlin-based Alice Zappe and Julia Lager

During this year’s Amsterdam-based Music Hack Day, two intrepid hackers originating from Berlin created a musical umbrella which produces a random series of lo-fi 8-bit tones. The tones are triggered by raindrops striking the outside surface of the umbrella's canopy and the abstract results bring to mind a warped soundtrack for the first generation Nintendo Game Boy.  Read More

Google co-founder Sergey Brin demonstrates Project Glass on stage at the Google I/O develo...

Google's Project Glass has intrigued many since it was unveiled in April. It was then that a compelling video showing how the company imagined this technology would be used made people sit up and take notice. In the three months that have followed, Google employees have been seen wearing the Project Glass devices, ably led by company co-founder Sergey Brin. Fittingly it was Brin who took to the stage at the Google I/O developers conference to offer more details on Project Glass, including the pricing and availability.  Read More

The Pistola con Caricato is a three-barreled revolver with 18 chambers in 6.35 x 16 mm sem...

A host of unusual firearms have been floated and (mostly) abandoned over the two centuries of largely trial-and-error design. After our recent coverage of Arsenal Firearm's AF2011-a1 double barrel semiautomatic pistol, we wondered if more extreme versions of multi-barrel repeating handguns existed. The outlandish Pistola con Caricato three-barreled revolver is a definite candidate.  Read More

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