Though it may not be much comfort as you use it on the usual round of chores, inside the new Dyson DC31 vacuum cleaner is a motor that's ten times faster than a jet engine, and much quieter. At 104,000 rpm, the DC31's digital switched reluctance motor actually spins faster than any motor on earth.
Earlier in the week, Adobe CEO Shantanu Narayen announced that a mobile implementation of the full Flash Player 10 would be making its way onto several smartphones by October. In addition to Android, other mobile operating systems, including Windows Mobile, Palm's WebOS, and Symbian have signed on. Missing from that list, to absolutely no one's surprise, is the iPhone.
I'm still waiting for the technology that finally does away with my need to sleep. But since I do need my nightly dose (I've tried going without, and it's ugly), I'd like to make sure I'm doing it as efficiently as possible. A new device called the Zeo promises to help stamp out bad sleep and wasted time in bed, by bringing deep analysis of sleep patterns, formerly the province of professional sleep laboratories, into the home.
HP is hoping there’re a lot of people out there with mass printing needs but without regular Internet access. Their new PhotoSmart Premium printer has a Wi-Fi-enabled touchscreen on the front that allows a user to print directly from the Internet. The idea is that the printer would be a quick way of printing out online directions, pictures, movie tickets, and so forth, without the need of a computer.
Now that I've had a day or two to digest the rapidfire assault of product updates that was the Apple WWDC 2009 keynote, I must admit I'm less than thrilled with what went down. Sure, I may have drooled on my keyboard just a bit as I followed live blog coverage of the pep rally. But now that the Apple Kool-Aid has finally worn off and I've returned to my normal crotchety self, I can't help but feel disappointed--perhaps even a little incensed--by this most recent Steve-free Apple hoedown.
The water toilet is truly one of the greatest miracles of modern life, a frothy disappearing act; now you see it… now you don't. But washing human waste away requires huge sewage treatment infrastructures in cities, and extensive home septic systems for rural dwellers. Compost toilets, though in their essence as old as human civilization, have evolved to a point of technological sophistication whereby they tackle the minutiae of composting details to create optimal conditions for recycling human waste.
Take a look at the compost toilet tech out there for the non-flushers among us.
We've been waiting almost five months for the Palm Pre smartphone to hit stores. Now Sprint has finally announced the details: In two and a half weeks, you'll be able to get the Pre for $200 (after a $100 mail-in rebate) in stores around the country. If you don't have a Sprint retail outlet in your town, not to worry. Best Buy, RadioShack, Sprint's online store, and even some Wal-Marts will carry the phone, too.
Today, Amazon announced a new Kindle e-reader that has a bigger screen -- 9.7 inches diagonally -- and a bigger price tag: 489 smackeroos. So should you fork out $130 more than the last Kindle for the new version? We can't say for sure until we get to play with it for a while, but here's a preliminary guide based on the specs and our quick demo at today's press conference.
How much air is big air? Just check your iPhone. The latest application for the iPhone is Hangtimer, which allows skiers to quantify just how big they went. Download the application for an absurdly cheap $10, and the iPhone's -- or iPod Touch's -- internal tri-axial accelerometer detects when your feet leave and touch the ground. After each jump, the iPhone displays your flight time, while a plot provides a running tally of your jumps and speed throughout the day.
Like any good New Yorker, I love to walk, but as a group of Popular Science editors strolled back to the office today from a hands-on demo of Honda's latest prototype, we felt sadly ... pedestrian. We had gone to see a team of Japanese engineers from the company proudly showing off their new mobility technology -- a pair of wearable robotic "Walking Assist Devices." Strapping the powered gadgets to our legs felt silly, but after taking them off, the sensation of being cast back among unaugmented humans, forced to walk completely under our own primitive power, was a distinct comedown.