The printer goes for $2,499, though the first backers were able to nab it for $1,999. It has some interesting features, such as auto-print bed leveling. Read more »
Kirobo, the talking astronaut robot that arrived at the International Space Station last month, just said its first words from orbit. While floating in microgravity, Kirobo explained that “On August 21, 2013, a robot took one small step toward a brighter future for all.” Kirobo will serve as a companion to incoming ISS commander Koichi Wakata.
What if packages could be delivered right to the balcony of your apartment on the 23rd floor? A delivery company is testing out using drones as package couriers in southeast China. The drones can carry as much as 6.6 pounds and fly 330 feet in the air.
Between 2007 and 2011, the number of surgical robots in U.S. hospitals increased from 800 to 1,400. A better reporting system could help doctors and patients better assess their safety. Read more »
Genes can tell us a lot, including disease predisposition and existing disorders. It becomes cheaper every year to sequence a person’s DNA, causing an inevitable question to arise: What if every baby had their genome sequenced just after birth? Two national institutes just put money toward exploring it as an option to complement existing screening programs.
The strongest robots ever could make use of stretchy, plastic sheets as muscles. Researchers are developing a robotic arm that could soon beat a much larger human in an arm wrestling match. Read more »
Ferrofluids form spikes when exposed to a magnet, offering an alternative to the expensive, fragile needles researchers have been using to build tiny jet propulsion systems. Read more »
TechShop‘s original Menlo Park location, the makerspace where the Square credit card reader was first prototyped, has to move due to plans to redevelop the land on which the building is located. It has until October 31 to do so. Tons of members have launched products prototyped at TechShop on crowdfunding websites, so, fittingly, founder Jim Newton took to IndieGoGo today in hopes of raising $250,000 to ease the transition.
Graphene can’t turn a flow of electrons “on” or “off” like silicon. Scientists have tried tactics like introducing impurities or stacking it with other materials to overcome this without luck. Read more »
It’s commonly held that robots that look too similar to humans creep us out. It’s called the uncanny valley, and it leads designers to be careful to build robots that are distinctly non-human. But scientific studies have found varying responses to bots that fall into the uncanny valley. Sometimes they scare study participants and sometimes they don’t, and researchers are not quite sure why.
Bionym CEO Karl Martin envisions the sub-$100 band will be used to unlock cars, sign into computers and issue payments. Read more »
Despite its small size, the truck is packed with a laser cutter, a 3D printer, hand tools and much more. Two members of the crew weighed in on what it’s like to work with young makers. Read more »
Around 200,000 volunteered computers donated 17,000 years worth of computing time in an 8 month span, aiding in the identification of 24 pulsars in the Milky Way. Read more »
Amazon has sunk $13.9 billion into local warehouses since 2010 in an effort to make shipping times ever shorter. 3D printing could allow it to cut out an entire leg of the shipping process.
Lego’s Mindstorm robotics kits go on sale next week. Facebook, Pandora, Flickr and Autodesk went head-to-head to show some of the potential projects you can build. Read more »
When structures are built in space instead of on Earth, it cuts down on cost and engineering requirements. Tethers Unlimited’s first major goal is to build support structures for huge solar arrays. Read more »
A research firm predicts that while there will be more money in flexible displays, consumers will likely have to wait until 2016 to get their hands on a truly flexible product. Read more »
Bill Gates took to LinkedIn to make the case for why countries are not doing enough to draw their smartest citizens into the sciences and how doing so could solve some of the world’s greatest problems.
JumpStartFund will provide a platform for people to submit ideas and evaluate suggestions from others. If all goes well, they could also provide a funding platform for the project. Read more »
A panel of industry business leaders agreed at a Broadcom event last night that the internet of things will need to be seamless, or risk alienating users. Read more »
Citizen science advocate Ariel Waldman wants everyone to know science is an accessible tool, no matter their background. Read more »
University of Washington researchers have created the first noninvasive human-to-human brain interface. Brain signals from one researcher were sent via the internet to a skull cap that stimulated another researcher’s brain, causing him to move his hand.
Users can access the site’s services once 20 printers are listed in a city. Read more »
Silicon solar cells are good at turning certain energy levels of sunlight into electricity, but the rest is lost as heat. Globs of lead selenide help the extra energy pair with multiple electrons. Read more »
Rolled up tubes of graphene could someday rival silicon for applications in solar cells, batteries, electronics and more. Read more »
Layer by layer, 3D printers build objects out of gooey plastic. Here’s how the process works, plus a few professional technologies that could soon be available to the average maker. Read more »
From a nuclear reactor that runs on nuclear waste to a totally new way to transfer money, big ideas are coming out of the younger generation. Read more »
Elon Musk enjoys taking to Twitter with announcements about his latest inventions and ideas. But 140 characters can leave things a bit cryptic. Unless this is Musk’s idea of unwinding with a bit of fun on a Friday afternoon, we’ll know more next week. Musk said he’ll post a video of designing a rocket part with hand gestures and then “immediately printing it in titanium.”
We figured out how to design rocket parts just w hand movements through the air (seriously). Now need a high frame rate holograph generator.—
Elon Musk (@elonmusk) August 23, 2013
While the company is not likely to reach its Kickstarter goal next week, it’s secured enough outside funding that the project will continue. Read more »
NASA veteran and aerospace entrepreneur John Mankins wants to put a flock of solar power plant in space that could deliver power to anywhere on the planet. But most of the industry thinks it would be too expensive. Mankins shared his vision and some ideas for overcoming the remaining technical challenges with Motherboard.
Sheets of plastic are embedded with flat radios based on technology developed in the 1920s. A team at Princeton expects to have a prototype ready next month. Read more »
What if you could control a drone just by tilting your head? A recent Google Glass hack sent a quadcopter cruising precisely through the air based on the Glass wearer’s movements.
The scanner will work with objects up to 8 inches across and compete with affordable devices that have been raising funds on crowdfunding sites. Read more »
They can build some amazing stuff, from chairs to artwork seemingly suspended in mid air. But the average user has to build a robotic printer themselves if they want to use one. Read more »
The European Commission released a report today that found half of all research papers are available free online within two years of publication. The number of open access research journals is also growing. The lead author of the study believes the trend will accelerate in the next few years.
The Zeus integrates a 3D printer and scanner into one device; an inevitable combination. It’s the brainchild of two USC computer science PhD students. Read more »
Since its formation in 2007, Noisebridge has grown from a few people meeting in coffee shops to an overflowing space on Mission Street where members can pursue projects that even the maddest scientist would approve of. Read more »
The hyperloop is still an idea, but a model made with three 3D printers has brought it a little bit of life. A team at WhiteClouds designed and printed the to-scale model in less than 24 hours.
University of Michigan researchers’ new method of producing isobutanol from inedible plant material could provide an alternative to ethanol, which drives up food costs. Read more »
Researchers at PARC, home of the laser printer, are working on printing sensors that could flutter about on the surface of Mars to collect environmental data. Read more »