With telepresence robots serving as stand-ins, there’s no reason for sick kids to miss school. Some children may prefer to skip class, of course, but for those with serious immune system disorders, telepresence ‘bots are a lifeline to the outside world.
Back in January 1948, then-mayor of Boston, James Michael Curley, was frustrated. He worried of "perhaps disastrous flooding" from snowmelt, and endeavored to find some way--any way--of removing the snow in the meantime. So he sent a letter to MIT, hoping that the technological whiz-kids in Cambridge could come up with some way to rid the city (and even the entire state) of snow. He even offered a suggestion of his own: flamethrowers.
Well, we’ve seen this movie before (literally speaking). A group of robotics engineers at the University of Technology in Eindhoven are developing an Internet for robots; a kind of online database from which robots can download instructions and to which they can upload “experience.” According to its creators, their RoboEarth system will allow robots to share information and learn from each other, allowing the benefits of machine cognition and learning to proliferate through a network of bots. Cue the SkyNet comparisons.
A new bridge concept incorporates wind and solar energy into its design, generating 40 million kilowatt-hours per year — and looking pretty slick to boot.
The Solar Wind concept would use the space between an existing viaduct in southern Italy to install 26 wind turbines, which designers Francesco Colarossi, Giovanna Saracino and Luisa Saracino say could provide 36 million kilowatt hours of electricity every year.
After nearly a weeklong Internet blackout in Egypt amid anti-government protests, the Egyptian Web is back online this morning. Web monitoring firm Renesys reported via blog post that at about 11:29 a.m. Cairo time (4:29 a.m. EST) Egyptian ISPs returned to service, a report that has since been echoed by several othersources.
The proliferation of space debris surrounding our planet isn't just a theoretical problem--flying extraterrestrial garbage can cause damage to satellites, manned and unmanned space missions, and even the International Space Station.
Google’s Street View technology lets you stroll faraway boulevards and take in the architecture of distant cities. Now it will let you wander some of the world’s great art galleries, sampling a smattering of the world’s most popular artworks in super high-res.
In 2008, Dr. Nathan Myhrvold began to carve out a portion of the 20,000-square-foot warehouse outside Seattle that houses the research lab of Intellectual Ventures. The former Chief Technology Officer of Microsoft had an idea for a cookbook he wanted to write, and he needed some kitchen space.
Maxime Bilet, the kitchen's head chef of R&D and a co-author (with Myhrvold and Chris Young) of the ambitious cookbook, led me through the kitchen, where four full-time staffers were in the process of making me lunch using a variety of outre apparatus. The usual kitchen accoutrements were on display -- stove, sink, cutting boards, refrigerators -- but Bilet's tour started with the ultrasonic bath.
De-bearded mussels are not only delicious — soon, they might improve medical implants. Scientists can now reproduce the sticky gloop that mussels use to anchor themselves to rocks, leading to a new breed of self-healing, waterproof elastic adhesives that can be used for underwater materials or even for biomedical applications.
Graphene is widely regarded as the electronics material of the future, but in an article published over the weekend in the journal Nature Nanotechnology, a group from EPFL’s Laboratory of Nanoscale Electronics and Structures (LANES) describes how the abundant mineral molybdenite (MoS2) is a very effective semiconductor with advantages over both graphene and silicon. The discovery could allow for transistors that are smaller and orders of magnitude more efficient.