BrainStuff
Get inside the brain of the mastermind of HowStuffWorks.

Category RSS Feed

Interesting Reading #743 – Kissing machine, Amazing 3D maps, Tiniest Atomic Clock, Supersoakers with magazines and much more!

by |

 

Super Soaker introduces a new wrinkle to squirt guns: magazines – “It has been a long time since we’ve seen something new and interesting in the world of squirt guns. Hasbro has come up with a new way of keeping extra water ready for quick reloads when you’re in the field, trying to soak your children (or parents, as the case may be) as efficiently as possible. With the new line of Super Soaker water guns you don’t need to find a house or go inside to a sink: you simply remove your empty magazine and slam a new one in. It’s like a squirt gun action film….”

E Ink dashes hopes of a next gen display in 2011, but pencils in full-motion video for 2012 – “But the E Ink VP did hint at some brighter news: the next-gen display, when it does finally arrive, could sport full-motion video. So far e-ink video has failed to go beyond a slightly jittery 10-15fps, so full-motion 24fps or 30fps could definitely be worth the wait….”

Now You Can Buy the Smallest Atomic Clock Ever Made – “The new clock, precise to a millionth of a second, is 100 times smaller than its predecessor …”

A Look At The Motorola Xoom – Android 3.0 Arrives – “The Motorola Xoom tablet has been met with plenty of hype, and perhaps rightfully so since it is the first tablet to ship with Android 3.0 (aka Honeycomb), the first version of Android designed specifically for tablets. Although there are a number of tablets slated to hit the market this year, Motorola has the benefit of being the first company to actually ship a tablet running on Honeycomb. The Xoom also has some powerful specs that are sure to attract attention, including a dual-core processor, a 10.1-inch widescreen display, 32GB of onboard storage, and front- and rear-facing cameras…”

Did DNA Finger bin Laden? – “His face is one of the most recognizable in the world, but in the end, could it have been DNA fingerprinting that proved to U.S. officials that they had finally nailed Osama bin Laden?”

Kissing Machine Is Real, Lets You Make Out via a Gadget – ” Not a great kisser? Maybe you’ll be able to practice with this kissing machine someday. Developed by the Kajimoto Laboratory at the Uniiversity of Electro-Communications in Tokyo, this Kiss Transmission Device is the latest in analog smooching technology: It can take input via your tongue and translate it to a paired device and supposed recipient–if there is one, that is….”

Sony data breach could be most expensive ever – “Sony Corp.’s PlayStation Network and Sony Online Entertainment suffered data breaches that could cost up to $2 billion….” See also: 10 Biggest Tech Cover-Ups: Shut Up and Act Like Nothing’s Wrong

USC engineers build synthetic synapse with carbon nanotubes – “Engineering researchers at the University of Southern California have built a carbon nanotube circuit that reproduces the function of a neural synapse….”

The wrong amount of sleep ‘can age your brain by up to SEVEN YEARS’ – “The amount of sleep we get can impact our mental health in later life, a study has warned. Sleeping too little or for too long disrupts how we think and can age the brain by up to seven years, the findings show. Getting less or more than the six to eight hours recommended sleep increases the speed of cognitive decline and affects abilities such as reasoning and vocabulary.”

Ownership of TV Sets Falls in U.S. – “There are two reasons for the decline, according to Nielsen. One is poverty: some low-income households no longer own TV sets, most likely because they cannot afford new digital sets and antennas. The other is technological wizardry: young people who have grown up with laptops in their hands instead of remote controls are opting not to buy TV sets when they graduate from college or enter the work force, at least not at first. Instead, they are subsisting on a diet of television shows and movies from the Internet….”

Gearless Turbine Gets Power From Light Winds – “Windtronics has developed a new home wind turbine that could be a practical renewable energy option, even for folks living in areas with light or infrequent winds. The new product is called the Honeywell Wind Turbine and its manufacturer says it features technology capable of converting wind speeds as low as two mph into energy….”

Wind Turbine Mounts Chimney, Draws Fumes Out – “It’s usually pretty interesting to see what happens when a designer embraces green technology. The result can either be (a) a blend of stylish form and practical function which gives otherwise utilitarian looking devices a bit of a face-lift, or (b), a piece of stylish garbage. Recently, we’ve seen evidence to the more positive in the form of design ideas like the solar vox charger, the Fido electric scooter and the Allpac backpack. Here’s another such design, but this time in the form of a wind turbine….”

Harvey Fineberg: Are we ready for neo-evolution?

How China recycles millions of cellphones every year – “China has the world’s largest mobile phone user population, at an incredible 889 million. And 29.6 % of these users buy Nokia devices. But what happens when the Chinese, who on average change their device every 15 months, want a new one? Most of them unfortunately just throw their old phone away with as few 1% recycled. To combat this trend Nokia introduced the “Green Box” project in 2005. This concept introduced collection boxes at more than 700 Nokia service centers at mobile phone retail outlets in nearly 300 cities. To see what happens to those Nokia devices that don’t get recycled there, check out these amazing pictures, taken by Dutch Artist/Designer David Kousemaker….”

Samsung hits Apple with 10 patent claims in the US – “The suit, filed on Wednesday in the US District Court for the Northern District of California San Jose division, and picked up by Bloomberg, accuses Apple of infringing on 10 of Samsung’s patents. One of those patents includes the capability to use the web while on a phone call — a feature Apple has touted in its advertisements for the GSM version of the iPhone….”

China In 2050: 350 Million Vehicles, Many Electric Cars…And Gasoline Exports? – “By some estimates, the world’s current 800 million vehicles will grow to as many as 2.5 billion by 2050. Virtually all the growth will come from developing nations, including China, India, Brazil, and Russia, with North America, Europe, and Japan staying static…”

Is There a Future for Airships? – “The notion that airships represent the future of air cargo is being revived by a new generation of entrepreneurs some 75 years after a catastrophic fireball brought the industry to a screeching halt….”

The five-year-old boy who sold 3,000 monster drawings to pay for his own cancer treatment – “A little boy fighting cancer is selling pictures he has drawn of his favourite monsters to pay for the treatment that could save his life. Aidan Reed, five, from Kansas City, U.S., was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukaemia on September 13 last year….”

IP-Address Is Not a Person, BitTorrent Case Judge Says – “A possible landmark ruling in one of the mass-BitTorrent lawsuits in the U.S. may spell the end of the “pay-up-or-else-schemes” that have targeted over 100,000 Internet users in the last year. District Court Judge Harold Baker has denied a copyright holder the right to subpoena the ISPs of alleged copyright infringers, because an IP-address does not equal a person…”

New theory shows one-way transmission materials should be possible for sound and light waves – “Physicist Stefano Lepri of the Italian National Research Council and his partner Giulio Casati of the University of Insubria, have published a paper in Physical Review Letters, where they demonstrate through mathematical theory that it should be possible to create asymmetric materials that allow most light or sound waves to pass through in one direction, while mostly preventing them from doing so when going the opposite way….”

Tigerlily raises $1.3 million (€900K) to help brands avoid Nestle-like Fan page disasters – “There are currently over 10,000 different brands currently using Tigerlily’s solutions, which provide a number of tools for managing and developing Facebook fan pages. Some of these tools allow Fan page administrators to moderate comments, offer localized content or coupons to their fans, and integrate shopping applications. Tigerlily does use a Freemium business model, meaning that a free version is available for most of its solutions….”

Roll a D6:

Rice’s origins point to China, genome researchers conclude – “Rice originated in China, a team of genome researchers has concluded in a study tracing back thousands of years of evolutionary history through large-scale gene re-sequencing. Their findings, which appear in the latest issue of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS), indicate that domesticated rice may have first appeared as far back as approximately 9,000 years ago in the Yangtze Valley of China. Previous research suggested domesticated rice may have two points of origin — India as well as China….”

Math Genius Solves 100 Year Old Problem, Then Refuses Million Dollar Prize – “The Poincare conjecture was a seemingly unsolvable theorem that was first proposed in 1904. Dealing with a branch of spatial mathematics called topology, the theorem sought to prove that any shape without a hole can be formed into a sphere. Sounds simple enough, right? Tell that to the math world, which, for over a century, struggled to prove the elusive conjecture even possible, inadvertently turning it into one of the community’s Holy Grails….”

LED Lighting Comes out of the Dark – “Despite being cool, ultra-efficient and long lasting, the light-emitting diode (LED) has yet to conquer the general lighting market due to a problem called “efficiency droop.” New findings from simulations carried out at the National Energy Research Scientific Computer Center (NERSC) have unearthed droop’s elusive cause, researchers say, paving the way for wider LED use….”

Point: Republicans note harsh interrogation helped bin Laden operation – “Rep. Peter T. King, chairman of the House Homeland Security Committee, said initial clues to bin Laden’s location can be traced to the waterboarding of Khalid Shaikh Mohammed and the interrogations of Abu Faraj al-Libbi, the former No. 3 al Qaeda leader captured in 2005….”

Counterpoint: Senate Intel Chair: Torture Did Not Lead To Bin Laden In Any Way – “More and more evidence suggests a key piece of intelligence — the first link in the chain of information that led U.S. intelligence officials to Osama bin Laden — wasn’t tortured out of its source. And, indeed, that torture actually failed to produce it….”

Scientists Identify Genetic Risk for Major Depression – “A new study reveals a novel gene associated with major depression. The research, published in the April 28 issue of the journal Neuron, suggests a previously unrecognized mechanism for major depression and may guide future therapeutic strategies for this debilitating mood disorder….”

Insanely Detailed 3-D City Maps Are Accurate To Six Inches [Slideshow] – “C3 Technologies’ 3D city models are better than Google’s, thanks to imaging technology originally designed for guiding missiles….”

[[[Interesting Reading #742 – You now have digital fingerprints, Transplanting Africa to America, Antinhydrogen lasts 15 minutes and much more!]]]

If you would like to follow Brainstuff on Twitter or Facebook, here are the links:
Follow Brainstuff on Facebook
Follow Brainstuff on Twitter

Tags:

 
 

Comment Now

Recent Postings by Category