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World's First

— Health and Wellbeing

SteriShoe uses UV light to eliminate smelly shoes

U.S. company Shoe Care Innovations has launched the world’s first ultraviolet shoe cleaner. The SteriShoe UV Shoe Santizer safely disinfects the inside of shoes by using ultraviolet (UVC) light. It is ideal for people who suffer from athlete's foot (tinea pedis), toenail fungus (onychomycosis), or shoe odor. It has also been recommended for diabetes sufferers and is 100 percent free of chemicals. Read More
— Science

World's first hard X-ray free-electron laser images intact viruses

An international team of scientists has obtained the world’s first single-shot images of intact viruses – a technology that could ultimately lead to moving video of molecules, viruses and live microbes. The team was also able to successfully utilize a new shortcut for determining the 3D structures of proteins. Both advances were achieved using the world’s first hard X-ray free-electron laser – the Linac Coherent Light Source (LCLS) – which scientists hope could revolutionize the study of life. Read More
— Mobile Technology

LG to unveil world’s first 3D smartphone

The 3D bandwagon continues to gain momentum, if not followers, with the news LG plans to unveil the world’s first 3D smartphone at Mobile World Congress 2011 later this month in Barcelona. The LG Optimus 3D will pack a glasses-free LCD panel as well as a dual-lens camera for capturing 3D images and vides to help address the current lack of 3D content. It will also feature 3D-capable HDMI 1.4 and DLNA connectivity options for sharing 3D content. Read More
— Computers

Fujitsu introduces world's first biodegradable mouse

Last year, Fujitsu introduced a keyboard where nearly half of the plastic normally used was replaced with biodegradable bio- or wood-based substitutes. The company continues its green crusade this year with the introduction of what's claimed to be the world's first biodegradable computer mouse. The M440 ECO optical mouse sports a PVC-free USB cable and is made from a combination of the same Arboform and Biograde materials used in the keyboard – reducing our dependence on oil-based resources one click at a time.. Read More
— Space

Turn of fortune for NASA as solar sail successfully deploys

What looked like a failed mission has turned into an unexpected win for NASA with the successful deployment of the first-ever solar sail in low-Earth orbit. More than a month after the NanoSail-D nanosatellite failed to eject from its parent satellite, engineers at NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center were pleasantly surprised when the 3.9 x 3.9 x 14.9-inch unit spontaneously separated from the Fast Affordable Scientific and Technology Satellite (FASTSAT) last week. On January 20, after a timed three-day countdown, the ultra-thin, 100-square-foot polymer sail carried by the nanosatellite was unfurled 650 km above Earth where it will remain in orbit for up to 120 days. Read More
— Digital Cameras

World's first full HDR video system sees like the human eye

Anyone who regularly uses a video camera will know that the devices do not see the world the way we do. The human visual system can perceive a scene that contains both bright highlights and dark shadows, yet is able to process that information in such a way that it can simultaneously expose for both lighting extremes – up to a point, at least. Video cameras, however, have just one f-stop to work with at any one time, and so must make compromises. Now, however, researchers from the UK’s University of Warwick claim to have the solution to such problems, in the form of the world’s first full High Dynamic Range (HDR) video system. Read More
— Architecture

World's first skyscraper design up for auction

While the debate continues as to whether the world's first skyscraper was the the Home Insurance Building built in Chicago in 1885, or New York's seven floor Equitable Life Assurance Building built in 1870, it seems that the British pipped the Americans to the post in terms of a design. British architect Charles Burton designed a 1,000 foot (305 meter) high metal and glass building in response to a call to redesign The Crystal Palace, the famous London exhibition building, 30-odd years before the American buildings were erected. Burton's historic design sketch is headed for the auction block this week. Read More
— Wearable Electronics

PixelOptics to launch 'world's first electronic focusing eyewear'

We have previously reported on the development of prototype adaptive focus glasses at the University of Arizona (UA) that were able to switch focus electronically. Unlike manually adjustable focus glasses, such as TruFocals, that place a flexible liquid lens between two rigid lenses, the lenses of the prototype glasses consisted of a layer of liquid crystals sandwiched between two pieces of glass. By applying an electric charge, the orientation of the liquid crystals – and therefore the optical path length through the lens – was able to be changed, resulting in glasses that changed focus electronically. This technology is now on its way to consumers with PixelOptics showing its emPower! glasses at CES 2011. Read More
— Marine

Ocean Empire LSV – designs for the world’s first self-sufficient zero carbon superyacht

Earlier this year Sauter Carbon Offset Design unveiled its Super Nova 60 megayacht – a design which harnesses energy from a variety of sustainable sources including solar, wind and waves to produce "the world’s first carbon neutral megayacht." Now the company has gone one step further with plans for its Ocean Empire Life Support Vessel (LSV). This 144-foot Catamaran design adds hydroponic farming to its array of sustainable technologies making it, according to the designers, the world’s first totally self-sufficient zero carbon LSV ... meaning it could theoretically stay at sea indefinitely. Read More
— Automotive

Korea begins first commercial electric bus service

The Seoul Metropolitan Government (SMG) has claimed a world first by deploying electric buses on a commercial route. Previous electric bus operations have all been trials, or in the case of Expo 2010 in Shanghai, free public services. The buses went into service on December 21 after an 18 month development project with Hyundai Heavy Industries and Hankuk Fiber. Read More