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Top Stories


— Architecture

ModRoof promises a safer shelter for low-income families

Metal and concrete corrugated roofs are a ubiquitous feature on homes and shelters worldwide due to their low-cost, but they're really not very good at their job. Both are poor insulators, notoriously prone to leaks and can contain dangerous substances like asbestos ... plus they're not easy to sleep under during a monsoonal downpour. Indian startup ReMaterials reckons it has a better solution with its sustainable, modular roofing system called ModRoof.

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— Military

Startpoint project imagines the pride of the Royal Navy in 2050

In 1906, the battleship HMS Dreadnought entered into service with the Royal Navy. With her 12-in (305 mm) guns, high speed capabilities and other innovations, she rendered all other major warships obsolete. Inspired by this revolutionary design, the British Ministry of Defence (MoD) think-tank project Startpoint has unveiled its vision of a Navy vessel 35 years from now with the Dreadnought 2050 – an automated fusion-powered surface warship equipped with lasers, hypersonic missiles, a high-tech composite hull, and torpedoes that can travel at over 300 knots (345 mph, 555 km/h).

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— Electronics

Wacom Bamboo Spark creates digital copies of written notes – no special paper required

If you want a smartpen – which digitizes your handwriting and transmits it to a computer or mobile device – you currently have your choice of models including the Neo Smartpen N2, the LiveScribe Sky or the Orée Stylograph. All of those pens, however, require you to use special paper that's unique to that particular product. By contrast, Wacom's just-announced Bamboo Spark system works with a non-electronic pen and whatever A5-sized paper you've got on hand.

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— Medical

Completely paralyzed man steps out in robotic exoskeleton

Working with a team of UCLA scientists, a man with protracted and complete paralysis has recovered sufficient voluntary control to take charge of a bionic exoskeleton and take many thousands of steps. Using a non-invasive spinal stimulation system that requires no surgery, this is claimed to be the first time that a person with such a comprehensive disability has been able to actively and voluntarily walk with such a device.

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— Children

Infento offers transformable transportation for kids as they grow

Looking to both solve the problem of children quickly outgrowing their rides and give parent and child a fun project to create together, two Dutch inventors dreamed up Infento. The name, inspired by the Latin for "infinite makes," is a collection of creative ride-ons for ages 0-13. With just a hex key and a couple of hours, an adult and child can make a sledge, a recumbent bike, a trike with a cargo box, and more.

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