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— Robotics

VineRobot will keep tabs on the grapes

While many of us may fantasize about running a vineyard someplace like the south of France, doing so wouldn't actually be all ... well, wine and roses. For one thing, you'd need to regularly walk up and down all those rows of vines, continuously stopping to check on the plants themselves and their grapes. It's the sort of thing that it would be nice if a robot could do. A robot like the VineRobot. Read More
— Science

Grapesort system automatically obsesses over wine grapes

Wine grapes may soon be joining oranges and strawberries, on the list of "Fruits That Are Now Inspected and Sorted by Machines." As part of the Grapesort project, Germany’s Fraunhofer Institute for Optronics, System Technologies and Image Exploitation has helped create an automated system that not only gives bum grapes the boot, but also divides up the good ones according to quality. Read More
— Holiday Destinations

Vineyard hotel in Mendoza features unique hovering loft accommodation

Located in Mendoza, Argentina amid 6,000 meter (20,000 foot) Andes, Entre Cielos is home to a tree-hotel prototype that offers guests an exclusive escape hovering over lush green vines. Despite Mendoza's naturally barren landscape, the small town utilizes a sophisticated irrigation system that nurtures a hub of over 1200 vineyards. The Entre Cielos vineyard, hotel and spa was conceived in 2009 by a group of Swiss architecture enthusiasts, which is currently developing a series of hovering guest cabins designed by German architectural studio Baumraum. Read More
— Architecture

The Carapace – first building design by famous Italian artist Arnaldo Pomodoro

Italian sculptor Arnaldo Pomodoro, who created the famous "Sphere Within Sphere" located at the Vatican, has constructed his first-ever architectural sculpture. Titled “The Carapace,” the structure reflects its name by taking on the shape of a tortoise shell. The building, which will be inaugurated this June, is located on the Castelbuono Estate in Umbria, Italy. It marks the first time that the Italian master has created a work on such a grand scale. Read More
— Good Thinking

Nitrogen-filled globes set to revolutionize access to fine wine

All wine tastes better once it's aged, right? Wrong. In fact, wine experts say around 90% of wines are released by the winemaker tasting as good as they're ever going to get - and after 6 months of sitting in a bottle, most are deteriorating noticeably. Now, that's a great excuse to fling open your cellar doors, warm up your corkscrew and start drinking - but it's also the key idea behind a new wine storage and dispensing system called N2Wine that could start a revolution in the wine service industry. By keeping each wine completely isolated from oxygen, and at its perfect serving temperature, these racks of "wine globes" allow restaurants to serve a broad selection of their best wines by the glass, confident that even after months or years, every drop will be as fresh as it was the moment the bottle was opened. But will the market accept such a radical departure from the traditional romance of a fine bottle, opened and poured at the table? Read More
— Home Entertainment

WinePod's entry–level US$2000 Garagiste Personal Winemaking System

November 24, 2008 Two years ago we wrote quite bullishly about the impending launch from a Silicon Valley start-up producing US$4500 domestic devices for artisan winemaking and we’re pleased to report that WinePod (at left) has since won countless awards, and is now set to spawn a more affordable, entry–level personal winery – the Garagiste (at right and not to scale). The US$2000 Garagiste presses and ferments wine in a self–contained unit and makes four cases of world-class wine per fermentation – personally, we’d still go for the much smarter upmarket model because it is so clever and connects to your computer for micro fermentation monitoring and management. Read More