GM’s first car capable of charging your smartphone without a cord will be a Cadillac, not a Chevy Volt. It may have taken awhile, but GM has developed a better wireless charging system supporting multiple standards. Read more »
Science is the cleantech. Well, sort of. My thoughts on the evolving way for VCs to fund tough problems. Read more »
A plane-like drone developed at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Lausanne pinpoints the location of Wi-Fi signals to track phones to within 30 feet. Read more »
The Baseline Study is a collaboration between the Google X “moonshot” organization and various clinical and academic partners. The work should fit in well with the health-monitoring aspects of Google’s wearable efforts. Read more »
The partnership centers around using bioprinted tissue to discover new drugs. The announcement comes ahead of Organovo’s commercial launch later this year. Read more »
Calling all rockstar energy entrepreneurs. There’s a kick@ss opportunity for five of you. Read more »
Oculus’ second-generation developer kits for its virtual reality headset are now shipping, according to emails sent to developers last night. The news first surfaced on a Reddit thread before being picked up by Road to VR. Oculus community manager Andres Hernandez confirmed the shipments in the Reddit thread under the name cybereality: “We’ve started and it’s the real deal.” Oculus plans to ship 10,000 DK2 units in July, though as of April it had sold 25,000 headsets.
What should we do about the growing number of camera-equipped drones flying through U.S. neighborhoods? President Obama is developing some ideas. Read more »
The startup recently canceled its crowdfunding campaign and shifted from consumer to enterprise customers. It will focus on industrial and medical applications before returning to working on a device for the general population. Read more »
A startup called Leyden Energy is getting rid of a bunch of assets and patents around its lithium ion battery tech. Is it finally closing up shop? Read more »
After years as a toy company, LittleBits is ready to advance to the next phase of its strategy — becoming a platform that makes it easy for novices to build and prototype hardware. Read more »
A search involving dogs, a helicopter and hundreds of volunteers came to a happy conclusion after a drone owner lent his gadget to the efforts. Read more »
The 3-year-old San Francisco company will use the money to hire more people ahead of its commercial launch later this year. Read more »
SpaceX’s Falcon 9 rocket is now equipped with landing legs, which could eventually allow it to be reusable–a crucial step toward lowering the cost of carrying cargo to space. The space startup released a video today taken from the surface of the rocket as it passed through the planet’s atmosphere and crashed into the Atlantic Ocean. “The water impact caused loss of hull integrity, but we received all the necessary data to achieve a successful landing on a future flight,” a blog post states. “At this point, we are highly confident of being able to land successfully on a floating launch pad or back at the launch site and refly the rocket with no required refurbishment.”
Perovskite — have you heard of it? It’s a material that is getting a lot of buzz in the world of solar research. Now a U.K. solar startup plans to bring what it believes is a game-changing technology to make perovskite solar cells to the market. Read more »
Google’s “Little Box Challenge” is now open for business and is looking to hand out $1 million prize. Read more »
GE’s got a new idea for how to make a key part for a lower cost fuel cell, and its using a new business model to launch it commercially. Read more »
University of Maryland researchers used a laser to create tubes of air that resemble fiber optic cables, negating the need for laying traditional infrastructure. They are working on increasing the range they can send a signal to 150 feet. Read more »
The atom-thick material, which scientists believe to be stronger than graphene, is notoriously difficult to make. A new paper out of Rice University gives one more reason to take an interest in it. Read more »
Electric car maker Tesla Motors has temporarily idled production at its factory in Fremont, California, reports the San Jose Mercury News. It will use the almost two week downtime to increase production of its Model S sedan car, and to make way for manufacturing of its upcoming Model X, crossover SUV, minivan. Tesla plans to deliver 35,000 Model S cars this year, with a goal of 1,000 per week and the first Model X cars will be delivered in early 2015. Production will resume on August 4.
Facebook’s acquisition of virtual reality startup Oculus is now final, the company announced Monday. Facebook announced the purchase for $1.6 billion in stock and $400 million in cash in March. “We’re looking forward to an exciting future together, building the next computing platform and reimagining the way people communicate,” the two companies wrote in a statement.
We take you inside a brand new factory that’s churning out disruptive solar and grid batteries in West Pennsylvania. Read more »
With the help of StormTag, OpenSignal wants to open up its WeatherSignal crowdsourcing program to the iPhone as well as collect new types of climate data. Read more »
A new glass fabrication procedure produces glass surfaces that are significantly more water repellent and glare- proof, and the technology could be a good fit for smartphone displays. Read more »
Self-driving cars could be used as automated getaway drivers in criminal plots, according to the FBI. Sure, driverless cars could be used for crime. But so can Microsoft Excel. Read more »
The San Francisco space startup can track a ship as it crosses an ocean and the health of crops across the globe. The result is images that are both beautiful and revealing. Read more »
Airbnb was founded and is run by designers. That makes them hyper vigilant of the company’s brand and overall design, and now the company is getting a visual upgrade. On Wednesday Airbnb revealed a new symbol that it says represents Airbnb’s maturation and growth: they’re calling it the Bélo, “the universal symbol of belonging.” What do you think of it? Valleywag has its own hilarious take. And some peeps on Twitter pointed out it looks a bit like this logo.
The UK plans to open a spaceport in 2018 that would serve consumers and the emerging private space industry. The country is considering eight different locations. Read more »
Tado, the European Nest competitor, has taken $13.6 million in fresh investment from Target Partners, Shortcut Ventures – both of which have already invested — and others. According to CEO Christian Deilmann, the home climate control firm will use the money to expand to all major European countries and beyond. Currently, the Tado smart thermostat is available in Germany, Austria, Switzerland and the U.K., while the more recently launched Tado Cooling box, which connects legacy air-conditioning units to the firm’s app, is already a worldwide proposition.
Jibo can read messages, tell a dramatic story and beam in live video of a relative. Robots like it could soon bridge the social gap between humans and increasingly intelligent everyday devices. Read more »
Tesla’s goes for the mundane moniker for the third-gen car: Model 3. The Tesla brand is first, and the car brands comes second. Read more »
More Internet companies are embracing wind and solar to help power data centers. Microsoft is the latest for a huge data center in Chicago. Read more »
A life-sciences-as-a-service startup called Transcriptic has opened its APIs to the general public, allowing researchers around the world offload tedious lab work to robots so researchers can spend more of their time analyzing the results. Read more »
The White House finally responded to a petition, signed by more than 100,000 people, that called on it to let Tesla sell cars directly in all 50 states. Read more »
The agreement will make it easier for companies using Thinfilm’s NFC barcodes and sensor-equipped labels on their products to manage the data flowing from those items, through Evrythng’s identity management platform. Read more »
Now for sale at Amazon, Radioshack and Staples, 3D printers are getting less and less difficult to find. Home Depot became the latest retailer to offer 3D printers today when it began selling MakerBots online and in 12 stores nationwide. The store is selling three printer models, plus MakerBot’s 3D scanner and filament. The 12 stores are located in California, Illinois and New York. “Imagine a world where you can 3D print replacement parts and use 3D printing as an integral part of design and building work,” MakerBot CEO Bre Pettis said in a release.
One of the product leads behind both Google Glass and Google’s smart contact lenses is moving on to Amazon. What new project might Jeff Bezos be cooking up that might focus on giving vision to products? Read more »
Ultracapacitors are showing promise in some early electric vehicle applications. Will they ever replace batteries? Read more »
The Raspberry Pi Model B+ is different enough to warrant new cases, and has valuable new features, but the processor and RAM are the same as the Model B. The price remains the same too, at $35. Read more »
Tesla’s charging network is growing fast. Read more »