tech and geek stuff
How experimental games dumped us into a giant trash bag with a flashlight
reader comments 0 Share this story SAN FRANCISCO—The newest tradition at the Game Developers Conference is the "Alt.Ctrl" pavilion. Every year, hackers gather to present some of the weirdest games ever...
Discovery of tiny moon completes the set for worlds past Neptune
Pluto is one of the ten large, trans-Neptunian objects that all have moonsJohn R. Foster/SPLBy Leah CraneEverybody gets a moon! With the discovery of a small moon orbiting the third-largest dwarf planet,...
This smartphone app helps the blind identify random objects
The Aipoly app uses artificial intelligence to recognize its surroundings, and then says those objects out loud as a way to aid visually impaired users. The app's makers claim the software improves the...
Pinterest wants you to point, snap and shop
If you see a stranger wearing a pair of shoes that you like, a new feature on Pinterest’s mobile app will allow you take a picture of those shoes and — in theory — find them for you. If this sounds a...
Our galaxy's black hole is spewing out planet-size 'spitballs'
Every few thousand years, an unlucky star wanders too close to the black hole at the center of the Milky Way. The black hole's powerful gravity rips the star apart, sending a long streamer of gas whipping...
A surprising clue to baby's first words
A child’s first words mark a big milestone in life, and a topic of great curiosity for science. Now researchers have determined that these early stabs at verbal language are informed by what a baby sees....
Mapping free-fall styles of solid objects within fluids
James Clerk Maxwell conducted some of the first documented studies of free-falling objects during the mid-1800s, when the physicist analyzed the tumbling motion of a freely falling plate. But much remains...
Dances with waves: Breakthrough in moving small objects using acoustics
Researchers have made a breakthrough in controlling the motion of multiple objects on a vibrating plate with a single acoustic source. By playing carefully constructed melodies, the scientists can simultaneously...
Scientists levitate a ball with the power of sound
Sound has remarkable effects on the human mind. It can delight us, scare us, depress us and uplift us. But now, for the first time, physicists have shown that it can uplift physical objects too - in this...
Stronger terahertz waves allow safer detection of hidden objects
Researchers have come up with a way to use an unconventional laser beam -- called an Airy beam -- to create terahertz (THz) waves. THz waves can yield high-resolution images of hidden objects and are not...
Hummingbirds’ unique way of seeing prevents them from crashing
Is that small or far away?Charlie Croskery/University of British Columbia/PA Wire Hummingbirds have a unique collision avoidance system built into their brains that allows them to perform high-speed aerobatics...
Mysterious swoosh caused by pulsars hugging companions close
Objects that closely orbit pulsars may distort their radio signalsNASA/CaltechBy Joshua SokolTwo strange celestial bodies might have the clingiest friends in the cosmos. If the spinning neutron stars...
Meet the philosopher ducklings that indulge in abstract thought
By Andy CoghlanThere once was a brainy duckling. It could remember whether shapes or colours it saw just after hatching were the same as or different to each other. The feat surprised the researchers,...
Building a supermassive black hole? Skip the star
In the later Universe, supermassive black holes are easy to spot.NASA/ChandraIt seems that nearly every galaxy has a supermassive black hole at its core. Based on the presence of extremely bright objects...
That time a bot invaded Thingiverse and created weird new 3D objects
Shiv Integer Shiv Integer is a bot whose entire purpose in life is to create bizarre objects for 3D printers. It has been living for several months on 3D printer project site Thingiverse, posting objects...
DARPA wants your weapon ideas, offers cash prizes
If the zombie apocalypse hits, are you the person in your neighborhood who can turn everyday objects into a weapon? If so, then your country needs you. DARPA, the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency,...
Astronomers observe ‘outrageously luminous’ galaxy in the universe
Comments By: PTI | Washington | Published:March 23, 2016 5:14 pm Astronomers have observed the most luminous galaxies ever seen in the universe Astronomers have observed the most luminous galaxies ever...
Six microrobots band together to tow a Chevrolet Volt - Roadshow
We may have a new super-compact towing service in our futures. Stanford University's Biomimetics and Dexterous Manipulation Laboratory has taken inspiration from how ants work together to move much larger...
Mysterious infrared light from space resolved perfectly
Astronomers have detected the faintest millimeter-wave source ever observed. By accumulating millimeter-waves from faint objects throughout the Universe, the team finally determined that such objects are...
MIT touts tech to speed up webpages
Slow-loading webpages are a modern-day annoyance, but researchers at MIT’s Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Lab (CSAIL) and Harvard have unveiled a plan to nip the issue in the bud. The program,...
Meta-skin could lead to invisibility cloak
Engineers at Iowa State University may have gotten one step closer to the ability to make objects invisible with the development of what they are calling a flexible, stretchable and tunable meta-skin....
Google is using machine learning to teach robots how to grasp random objects
Using your hand to grasp a pen that’s lying on your desk doesn’t exactly feel like a chore, but for robots, that’s still a really hard thing to do. So to teach robots how to better...
This AI robot can recognize a ball from a baby
An undergraduate at Boston University has developed a robot with artificial intelligence that can move around without human direction and, most impressively, recognize what obstacle is sitting in front...
Puzzling asteroid observations explained by destruction of asteroids close to Sun
For two decades it was thought that most near-Earth objects (NEOs) -- asteroids and comets that may pose a hazard to life on Earth -- end their existence in a dramatic final plunge into the Sun. A new...
This Unreal VR editor makes Minecraft look like child's play
Epic has been known for creating some incredibly gorgeous tech demos and now the gaming giant is jumping into the VR world with Unreal Engine 4. The programmers and developers at Epic haven't just translated...
3D printing hands on: How to easily customize objects to the exact size you need
We continue our 3D printing discovery series by showing you how easy it is to customize the size of pre-designed objects -- without ever going into a 3D design program. It's quick, it's easy, and it's...
Proximity Hat presses users' heads to guide them
We've already seen a number of systems designed to alert blind users to objects in their path, and most of those systems use cues such as audio tones or vibrations. A scientist at Germany's Karlsruhe...
Galaxy-mapping Gaia space telescope gets an eye test from Pluto
ESA Gaia spies, with its gigapixel eye, something beginning with “P”. The European Space Agency launched its Gaia space telescope in December 2013 to map the locations of a billion stars in the Milky...
Ocean trash becomes photographer's artistic statement
Photographer Barry Rosenthal has found a unique way to tell the story of the damage humans are doing to the Earth's oceans -- by collecting thousands of pieces of trash scooped from the coastal areas...
Computer model matches humans at predicting how objects move
We humans take for granted our remarkable ability to predict things that happen around us. For example, consider Rube Goldberg machines: One of the reasons we enjoy them is because we can watch a chain-reaction...
Universal Zoom: All About Sizes and Distances (for iPad)
Universal Zoom ($1.99) is an iPad app that explores the scale of the universe and the relative size of various objects and distance between them, from the tiniest subatomic particle to superclusters of...
The weirdest tech stories of 2015
Every year, the tech headlines are full of hard-hitting and explosive stories. But for every Superfish gaffe and Ashley Madison hack, there are robots that 3D print pancakes and air conditioners for your...
What’s in a State and How to Persist It
A state is something that is affected by you and the memory of that. This something can be you clicking on an element, like a button, or you typing some text into an element. The state resides in your...
Laser-armed cameras can 'see' around corners
With the help of lasers, cameras can track moving objects hidden around corners, scientists say. The finding could one day help vehicles see around blind corners to avoid collisions, researchers added....
What to look for when buying a telescope
A telescope can open up on the wonders of the heavens. Credit: Grand Canyon National Park/Flickr, CC BY I'm often asked what inspired me to become an astronomer, and I explain that a pivotal moment for...
Over half of the giant Kepler planets may not be planets after all - CNET
The Kepler space observatory has been in orbit around the sun since 2009, collecting data on 150,000 stars, searching for Earth-like planets in the Milky Way galaxy. The mission has identified 8,826 objects...
World's first sonic tractor beam
British researchers have built the world's first sonic tractor beams that lift and move objects using soundwaves.A team from the universities of Bristol and Sussex, in conjunction with Ultrahaptics, a...
Modeling an Aggregate with Eloquent
The Aggregate pattern is an important part of Domain Driven Design. It prevents inconsistencies and is responsible for enforcing business rules within a collection of objects. For these reasons alone,...
Orange enhances internet of things strategy with additional services
French comms services supplier Orange has made a number of enhancements to its internet of things (IoT) strategy, and announced a long-range (LoRa) network to support business IoT deployments across France....
3D Slash Brings 3D Design To The Raspberry Pi
3D Slash, a free 3D design application, is now fully Raspberry Pi-compatible and works on the Pi-Top, an educational minicomputer based on the Raspberry Pi. The program allows students to design...
Mathematicians identify limits to heat flow at the nanoscale
How much heat can two bodies exchange without touching? For over a century, scientists have been able to answer this question for virtually any pair of objects in the macroscopic world, from the rate at...
A Robotic Tabletop Makes Simple Structures All by Itself
A surface that manipulates objects using mechanically controlled pins can put simple structures together.A robotic table that’s capable of manipulating objects placed on its surface may inspire new types...
Dwarf planet in our solar system may be farthest yet
A newly found object may set a new record for the most distant dwarf planet in the solar system.The object, called V774104, lies about nine and a half billion miles from the sun, or two to three times...
Our solar system may be much larger than we thought
Enlarge ImageThe new object could be in the same class as mysterious dwarf planet Sedna, discovered in 2003. NASA/JPL Researchers have found the most distant object ever in our solar system. The object,...
Disney's prototype smartwatch knows which objects you're touching
Smartwatches already know a fair bit about how we go about our daily lives, but with new technology currently under development they may soon become even more aware of how we interact with the world around...
Flying pixels create self-levitating displays
A team of researchers at Queen's University's Human Media Lab have unveiled a system of flying 'BitDrones' that let users explore virtual information by interacting with levitating voxels.Roel Vertegaal...
Unlocking the mysteries of 'little starlets'
This artist's conception illustrates the brown dwarf named 2MASSJ22282889-431026. NASA's Hubble and Spitzer space telescopes observed the object to learn more about its turbulent atmosphere. Brown dwarfs...
New 3-D printing method creates complex micro objects
Bioengineers from the UCLA Henry Samueli School of Engineering and Applied Science have developed a new method of 3-D printing that allows production of complex micro-scale objects smaller than the width...
Get to Grips with Virtual Objects Using This Stripped-Down Glove
A new controller puts sensors on your fingers so you can type without a keyboard and manipulate digital objects.Keyboards, mice, and touch screens all have their uses but have distinct limitations. They’re...
Sonic tractor beam forms acoustic holograms to lift objects
Last year, researchers at the University of Dundee revealed an acoustic tractor beam that used ultrasonic energy to pull macroscopic objects in. Now researchers in the UK have developed a sonic tractor...
This 'acoustic hologram' tractor beam moves objects with sound
Scientists have built a 'tractor beam'-like system that can grab, hold and move small objects using soundwaves generated holograms. Writing in Nature Communications, the University of Bristol team describe...
Finger-shaped sonic tractor beam lifts objects
Fleeing spacecraft being stopped by a powerful tractor beam is something we've all encountered in science-fiction shows. However, acoustic tractor beams that use sound waves to trap or lift objects aren't...
World's first sonic tractor beam lifts objects with sound
LONDON: Researchers, including one of Indian-origin, have built the world's first sonic tractor beam that can lift and move objects using sound waves. Tractor beams are mysterious rays that can grab and...
'Tractor beam' grabs beads with sound
Engineers in Bristol have developed a system that can grab, hold and move small objects without touching them, using "holograms" made of sound waves. It offers the kind of remote control that naturally...
Scientists have created a working Star Trek-like tractor beam
A team of scientists from the Universities of Sussex and Bristol in the UK have created a Star Trek-like tractor beam that uses sound waves to move objects. Published today in Nature Communications, the...
Star Trek 'tractor beam' invented by British scientists
"In our device we manipulate objects in mid-air and seemingly defy gravity" Prof Sriram Subramanian, University of Sussex Asier Marzo, PhD student and the lead author, said: "It was an incredible experience...
Sonic tractor beam invented (w/ Video)
The research team has created three-dimensional acoustic fields with shapes such as fingers, twisters and cages. These acoustic fields are the first acoustic holograms that can exert forces on particles...
Technology tackles space junk
Orbital debris can cause problems for space travel and satellites, so scientists have banded together to come up with innovative solutions, from laser cannons to proactive removal. The 2013 movie Gravity...
Flyweight Design Pattern and Immutability: A Perfect Match
The flyweight pattern is a relatively unknown design pattern in PHP. The fundamental principle behind the flyweight pattern is that memory can be saved by remembering objects after they have been created....
In June 2012, while working at CNN.com, I was tasked with designing the user experience of election night. The next five months of my life would be dedicated to that single night—but success to me had...
The guy who invented Android just teased his new company's smartphone for the first time
The father of Android, Andy Rubin, is currently kicking the tires on a new smartphone company named Essential. Rubin teased the company's first device on Monday, posting an image to Twitter and noting...
Apple's AR glasses could arrive in 2018
Step aside Snapchat Specs and get out the way Google Glass, Apple could be just a year away from its own face-worn wearable. The Cupertino firm is now being heavily tipped as currently expediting its...
Apple just made a deal that could reinvent the App Store for a new generation
Workflow is somewhat of a visual programming tool that's easier than writing an app but probably too wonkish for the average consumer. Gillett said Apple might get under the hood, making it easier for...
Chinese Court Rules in Favor of Apple in Patent Disputes
A Chinese court has ruled in favor of Apple in design patent disputes between the Cupertino, California company and a domestic phone-maker, overturning a ban on selling iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus phones...
I regard the brain as a computer which will stop working when its component fail. There is no heaven or afterlife for broken-down computers. That is a fairy story for people afraid of the dark