Highlights from the 2014 LA Auto Show

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Rosetta has picked up a mysterious 'song' from comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko (Image: ESA...

On the eve of the planned first landing on comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko, the European Space Agency (ESA) announced that the unmanned Rosetta orbiter carrying the Philae lander has recorded a "song" emanating from the comet. The electromagnetic melody was detected by the probe’s Rosetta Plasma Consortium, which is a suite of five instruments used to study 67P.  Read More

When folded up, the Impossible bike measures 17 in (43 cm) tall

Folding and electric bikes have proven fertile ground for innovation recently, but what about bikes that are both electric and folding? Three years in the making, the Impossible bike from a team of China-based engineers folds up to fit in a backpack and is capable of reaching 12 mph (20 km/h) on the road courtesy of a brushless electric motor.  Read More

Toyota packs a supercharged Tundra powertrain and tube frame inside a Camry shell

Believe it or not, the Toyota Camry was one of the most interesting debuts at the 2014 SEMA Show. Not just any Camry, this particular model features a supercharged Tundra V8 tuned to 850 hp (634 kW). It also has a full tube-frame chassis and a liftable body that shows off its race-derived build. You can pull up at a traffic light next to virtually any sports car and shock the clothes off the driver when you blow them away in the unassuming Toyota four-door.  Read More

The Supercomplication holds the record for the most complex pre-digital timepiece

It says something that a watch made in 1932 keeps breaking world records, and the Henry Graves Supercomplication watch did just that today as it was knocked down by Sotheby’s Geneva for a record-breaking CHF 23.2 million (US$24 million). The Supercomplication, which also holds the Guinness record for the most complicated handmade pre-digital timepiece, was purchased by an anonymous buyer after 15 minutes of competition between five bidders.  Read More

QUT sees cars powered by their body panels a reality within five years (Photo: Shutterstoc...

Imagine opening up an electric car and finding no batteries. An absent-minded factory worker or magic? Perhaps neither. If nanotechnology scientists led by the Queensland University of Technology (QUT) are on the right track, it may one day be a reality as cars are powered not by batteries, but their body panels – inside which are sandwiched a new breed of supercapacitors.  Read More

kadawittfeldarchitektur's design for the concert hall (Image: Beethoven Festspielhaus)

The year 2020 marks 250 years since Ludwig van Beethoven was born, with 2027 marking the 200th anniversary of his death. To honor these milestones, a plan is afoot to build a new concert hall in the composer's home town of Bonn, Germany. Following an international architectural competition, three potential designs, by David Chipperfield Architects, kadawittfeldarchitektur, and Valentiny hvp architects, remain.  Read More

Francois Gissy's rocket bicycle that took him to 333 km/h (207 mph) (Photo: Gerard Toutin ...

Last November, Frenchman Francois Gissy hit 285 km/h (177 mph) on a rocket-powered bicycle. Now, at the Circuit Paul Ricard in the South of France, he's knocked his own world record out of the park. Dialing in a massive 4.5 kN of thrust, which generates roughly the equivalent of 560 horsepower (418 kW), Gissy took his rickety-looking rocket bike up to a monstrous 333 km/h (207 mph), hitting top speed in just 4.8 seconds and generating about 1.96 Gs worth of acceleration. We had a quick chat with Gissy, who tells us he's hoping his next run will put him over 400 km/h (249 mph) in less than two seconds on a machine he's calling the "Spine Crusher."  Read More

Artist's impression of Foster + Partners' concept of a partially 3D-printed moonbase (Imag...

The European Space Agency (ESA) is currently exploring the possibility of establishing a permanent lunar base with the aid of 3D printing technology. The space agency and Foster + Partners, the London-based architecture firm that worked closely with the agency in the exploration of the project, have released a video outlining how they envision a future mission to construct a moonbase may unfold.  Read More

Elvie is a newly announced pelvic floor muscle exercise tracking device and smartphone app

Further proof that there's almost always "an app for that," Elvie is a personal fitness aid that works with an accompanying app to provide women with real-time guidance and tracking of pelvic floor exercises.  Read More

The Brigadier is dust and shock proof

Lately, smartphones are growing larger, lighter and thinner, making them increasingly frail to the point where we might have to worry about a $1,000 iPhone 6 Plus warping or bending in a back pocket. Amid this strange new status quo, the Kyocera Brigadier is the increasingly rare phone that need not be handled with care.  Read More

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