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Monthly Archives: May 2015

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Forget Google Glass—It’s All About Google Pants

Wearable technology is the future. There’s just one problem. No one wants to wear the stuff. One potential solution? Make it invisible. Weave it into already existing products so seamlessly no one will even know...

This Week’s Awesome Stories from Around the Web (Through May 30)

ROBOTS: Damage Recovery Algorithm Could Make All Robots Unstoppable Evan Ackerman | IEEE Spectrum "But instead of having to figure out which leg is broken and how, or doing any sort of self-analysis at all, the robot...
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Virtual Worlds: Visit Van Gogh’s Masterpiece ‘The Night Café’ in Virtual Reality

I open my eyes to a gritty, urban skyline dotted with airships. Looking down, I find my feet, the rooftop’s edge, and a vertiginous drop to the street below. Seconds later, I’m transported to...

Watch This Robot Learning to Play with Legos Like a Kid

If you’ve ever watched a child trying to fit a shape into a cut-out, you might get a flash of déjà vu in the following robot video. It takes some repeated smashing together of...

Come See Nobel Laureate Muhammad Yunus Kick Off Singularity University’s GSP 2015

Join Singularity University on June 15 at Mountain View's Computer History Museum for the Graduate Studies Program opening ceremony. Hear inspiring talks from SU cofounders, Peter Diamandis and Ray Kurzweil, and this year's keynote speaker, Nobel Laureate...

Why 3D Printing a Jet Engine or Car Is Just the Beginning

The 3D printing (digital manufacturing) market has had a lot of hype over the past few years. Most recently, it seems this technology arena has entered the "trough of disillusionment," as 3D printing stock prices...

Infographic: Trillion-Fold Rise in Computing Puts a 1985 Supercomputer on Our Wrists

You’ve probably heard we carry the equivalent of a 1980s supercomputer around in our pockets. It's a pretty amazing thing to consider. And, as it turns out, it's already outdated. Moore’s Law moves fast. According...

L’Oreal Goes After 3D Printed Human Skin to Test Beauty Products

In Lyon, France, cosmetics company L’Oreal is growing human skin. Each year, some 60 scientists cultivate 100,000 paper-thin skin samples in nine varieties simulating different ages and ethnicities—and then they test beauty products on them. Long...

What We’re Reading This Week Across the Web (Through May 23)

ROBOTICS: MIT'S Humanoid Robot Goes to Robot Boot Camp Emily Dreyfuss | WIRED "If the humans were controlling Atlas directly from the command center, this would be no big deal, but the MIT team designed for autonomy....

It’s Friday: Watch Jason Silva Talk Tech, Creativity, and Flow With a Few of His Heroes

Jason Silva isn’t a scientist, he’s a synthesizer. And he is a quoting machine. Kevin Kelly, Freeman Dyson, Ernest Becker, Erik Davis, Steven Johnson. These are Silva’s heroes, and he aims to infect us with...

What Is the Metaverse? Philip Rosedale’s Big Dream for Immersive Virtual Worlds

What is the metaverse? It’s Philip Rosedale’s second crack at playing god—at least in the virtual sense. Rosedale created his first virtual world, Second Life, in 2002. Now, he and his new company, High...

The Dirty Secret Behind Real Innovation: How Our Urge To Play Invented The Future

One of the most interesting things about writing books is the macroscopic picture that emerges when you’re done. Larger patterns begin to reveal themselves, bigger questions start to arise. Take Tomorrowland, my latest book. While...

AI More Like Iron Man’s JARVIS Is Coming This Next Decade…Bring It On

Artificial Intelligence (AI) is the most important technology we're developing this decade. It's a massive opportunity for humanity, not a threat. So, what is AI? Broadly, AI is the ability of a computer to understand your question,...

Watch Surgical Robot Deftly Suture a Grape

We've covered Intuitive Surgical's da Vinci surgical robot for years. In fact, to some, the system's long history—1.5 million surgeries dating back to 2000—may be one of its most surprising attributes. But this video really...

How Artificial Intelligence Is Primed to Beat You at Where’s Waldo

By their second birthday, children are learning the names of things. What’s this? Cat. And this? Whale. Very good. What’s this color? Red! That’s right. You love red. The human brain is good at making...

This Week’s Awesome Stories from Around the Web (Through May 16)

ROBOTICS: Robots Might Be the Necessary Future of Urban Pet Ownership Evan Ackerman | IEEE Spectrum "'If artificial pets can replicate the human benefits obtained from live pets, does that mean that the human–animal emotional bond is...

Watch GE’s 3D Printed Jet Engine Fire at 33,000 RPM

GE just 3D printed a jet engine—complete and functioning. It’s a pretty cool trick. The engine, about the size of a football, is a much-simplified version of something you might see on a commercial jet. But...

The Ultimate Interface: Your Brain

Ramez Naam is the author of 5 books, including the award-winning Nexus trilogy of sci-fi novels. Follow him on twitter: @ramez. A shorter version of this article first appeared at TechCrunch. The final frontier of digital technology...

Visions of London’s Garden Bridge: A Futuristic Greenway Over the Thames

In William Gibson’s latest book The Peripheral, he describes 22nd century London. Beyond the ubiquitous nanobot assemblers, the cosplay zones, and the puppet-like peripherals—Oxford Street has been turned into a greenway. Well, as it happens, London already...

Are Google’s 11 Driverless Car Accidents Scary—or Really Impressive?

If you drive enough, chances are you’ll be involved in an accident. For the best drivers, perhaps it’s more likely than not the other car’s at fault. But most of us will have occasional lapses....

The World in 2025: 8 Predictions for the Next 10 Years

In 2025, in accordance with Moore's Law, we'll see an acceleration in the rate of change as we move closer to a world of true abundance. Here are eight areas where we'll see extraordinary transformation in...

Quantum Computing Is About to Overturn Cybersecurity’s Balance of Power

“Spooky action at a distance” is how Albert Einstein described one of the key principles of quantum mechanics: entanglement.  Entanglement occurs when two particles become related such that they can coordinate their properties instantly...

Watching This Simulated Star Die Is Mesmerizing…and Good Science Too

Traditionally, we’ve done science by observing nature in person or setting up experiments in the lab. Now, a relatively new scientific technique is proving a powerful tool—simulating nature on supercomputers. A few years ago, Caltech...

What We’re Reading This Week Across the Web (Through May 9)

ROBOTICS: Foxconn’s Robot Army Yet to Prove Match for Humans Lorraine Luk | The Wall Street Journal "While the company has automated more manufacturing processes for components and established some lights-out, or workerless, factories, replacing dexterous human hands...
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A Quantum Computer Is a Delicate Beast: Video Tour of D-Wave’s Black Box (Part I)

Quantum computing is an old idea. But in the practical sense, it’s still very early days. If you actually want your own ready-made quantum computer—you won’t have to do much comparison shopping. The D-Wave series of quantum computers have been...

Daimler’s Driverless 18-Wheelers Approved to Cruise Nevada’s Highways

This summer, while road tripping through Nevada, you may pull up to the sleek silver cab of an 18-wheeler, and get a shock—the driver isn’t looking at the road, and his hands aren’t on...
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Video: For ATRIAS Robot, Walking Like a Human Is a Stroll in the Park…Literally

Humans evolved over millions of years into today's upright, bipedal walkers. Now, the evolution of some robots is on a similar track. Only the pace is much faster. In recent decades, we’ve gone from...

First Look: Oculus Rift Shipping in Early 2016

Since the first Oculus Rift virtual reality headset prototype, people have breathlessly asked, “When will a consumer version be ready?” Oculus played coy and stuck to its guns. When we think it’s ready, they said. Well,...

Tim Ferriss and the Secrets of Accelerated Learning

Five days to learn a new skill, no experience coming in, and some very high stakes—welcome to the Tim Ferriss Experiment. Over the past year, bestselling author, angel investor, and all-around life hacker extraordinaire, Tim...

Then and Now: 8 Fun Examples of Exponential Change From the Last Decade

It's hard to believe, but… Ten years ago... The first video was uploaded to YouTube. Facebook, then just a year old, dropped "the" from its old URL "thefacebook.com" after acquiring "facebook.com" for $200K. An early...

How Excited Would Buckminster Fuller Be at the Prospect of 3D Printed Buildings?

The Experimenters is an excellent new web series of animated interviews with some of the great minds and original thinkers of the last century. Its first episode highlights Buckminster Fuller, best known for his...

This Week’s Awesome Stories from Around the Web (Through May 2)

ROBOTICS: The Future of "Killer" Robots: Helping People Ciara Byrne | Fast Company "Robots are already moving out of the research lab, off the factory floor, and into our everyday lives. But how will those robots evolve—and how...

Tesla’s Powerwall Is the Latest Step Toward Our Clean-Energy Future

Most people are skeptical that we’re heading into a clean-energy future. They find it hard to believe that solar energy is fewer than 14 years away from meeting 100 percent of today’s energy needs....

Virtual Body Swap Experiment Maps Out-of-Body Illusion in the Brain

With the help of modern brain scanning technology, scientists have begun methodically mapping the brain by asking people to perform tasks or inducing experiences in a scanning machine and recording brain activity to see...

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