“Affordable storage of renewable power.”

The first of the revolutionary batteries is here

#Technology

Sun, Jul 22nd, 2018 11:00 by capnasty NEWS

Stanford University announces their development of a battery made of "Earth-abundant materials," capable of storing large amounts of electricity in a very cost-effective way. This may be the first flow battery to open the option of storing large amounts of solar power so that it can be distributed based on demand.

Stanford assistant professor of materials science and engineering William Chueh, along with his PhD student Antonio Baclig and Jason Rugolo, now a technology prospector at Alphabet’s research subsidiary X Development, decided to try sodium and potassium, which when mixed form a liquid metal at room temperature, as the fluid for the electron donor – or negative – side of the battery. Theoretically, this liquid metal has at least 10 times the available energy per gram as other candidates for the negative-side fluid of a flow battery.

“We still have a lot of work to do,” said…

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“Although this transition is irreversible, it carries potential for several robotic applications.”

Popcorn-Driven Robotic Actuators

#Robots

Sat, Jul 21st, 2018 11:00 by capnasty NEWS

IEEE's Spectrum brings to attention the work being done by Steven Ceron at Cornell University who is using pop-corn as a one-time robot actuator.

Popcorn kernels are a natural, edible, and inexpensive material that has the potential to rapidly expand with high force upon application of heat. Although this transition is irreversible, it carries potential for several robotic applications. As kernels can change from regular to (larger) irregular shapes, we examine the change in inter-granular friction and propose their use as granular fluids in jamming actuators, without the need for a vacuum pump. Furthermore, as a proof-of-concept, we also demonstrate the use of popcorn-driven actuation in soft, compliant, and rigidlink grippers. Serving as a first introduction of popcorn into robotics, we hope this paper will inspire novel mechanisms for multi-functional designs.

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“Cultured meat is finally on its way towards becoming a commercial reality.”

Lab grown meat to hit supermarkets in about three years

#Food

Fri, Jul 20th, 2018 11:00 by capnasty NEWS

According to Kinder World, Dutch startup Mosa Meat is expecting to bring to market its lab grown meat by 2021.

“Replacing traditional meat production with cultured meat would have a huge impact on the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions, it would free up a large number of resources that are now used for meat production worldwide and will completely disrupt an old-established and currently unsustainable industry,” said Alexander Hoffmann, principal at M Ventures. “We’re incredibly excited to be leading this investment into Mosa Meat, a company at the unique cross-section of food and biotech.”

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“There are but two powers in the world, the sword and the mind. In the long run the sword is always beaten by the mind.”

-- Napoleon Bonaparte

#Video

Thu, Jul 19th, 2018 11:00 by capnasty NEWS

On YouTube, Conspiracy Documentaries has this 2014 documentary on Psywar — psychological warfare — in the United States.

This film explores the evolution of propaganda and public relations in the United States, with an emphasis on the "elitist theory of democracy" and the relationship between war, propaganda and class.

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“If you really want to save the planet, you should die.”

In a world headed for climate change disaster, having children is a selfish endeavour

#Environment

Wed, Jul 18th, 2018 11:00 by capnasty NEWS

In The New York Times, Roy Scranton looks at the looming dystopian future and ponders on the selfish act of having children, the people who have inherited the mess we created. If anything, the only way to save the world is for you to die.

To take Wynes and Nicholas’s recommendations to heart would mean cutting oneself off from modern life. It would mean choosing a hermetic, isolated existence and giving up any deep connection to the future. Indeed, taking Wynes and Nicholas’s argument seriousaly would mean acknowledging that the only truly moral response to global climate change is to commit suicide. There is simply no more effective way to shrink your carbon footprint. Once you’re dead, you won’t use any more electricity, you won’t eat any more meat, you won’t burn any more gasoline, and you certainly won’t have any more children. If you really want to save…

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“Lighter, more affordable, personal rapid transit: self-driving bikes.”

But do I still need to pedal?

#Travel

Tue, Jul 17th, 2018 11:00 by capnasty NEWS

In this episode of ReInventors Katie Herzog looks at how the University of Washington is working in developing a bike that drives itself.

What does your future commute look like - will you be taking a self-driving car, a solo-wheel, the hyperloop? What about a self-driving bike? Professor Tyler Folsom and his students at UW are spearheading a grassroots effort to test and develop lighter, more affordable, personal rapid transit: self-driving bikes.

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“Civilisation is a movement, and not a condition, a voyage and not a harbour.”

Generation Ships

#Space

Mon, Jul 16th, 2018 11:00 by capnasty NEWS

In Isaac Arthur's latest episode he looks at Generation Ships, massive starships akin to an interstellar ark ferrying humans for thousands of years, generation after generation, to reach another planet.

Today we will begin our look at the spaceships we might use for colonizing interstellar space in the future. In order to cover the vast distances between even the nearest stars in our galaxy within the boundaries of known physics, we need vessels able to voyage at high speeds for very long periods of time while carrying everything they need to colonize another solar system, a concept typically known as a space ark or generation ship. We will explore the challenges and options for such a vessel, as well as some alternative approaches to the problem.

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“A company headquartered in Toronto runs a successful affordable mobile phone service in the US.”

Report indicates Canadian telecom providers gouge their customers

#Telephone

Sun, Jul 15th, 2018 11:00 by capnasty NEWS

Looking at a report by Tefficient, Motherboard notes that Canadians are getting a "raw deal" when it comes to data on a smartphone. Reportedly, Canadians pay the most yet use the least amount of data compared to other countries.

[...] Canada’s telecom industry is notoriously moribund, with just three established players making up a kind of oligopoly that account for the vast majority of mobile subscriptions in the country — Rogers, Bell Canada, and Telus. It’s one of Canada’s many curious ironies that a company headquartered in Toronto runs a successful affordable mobile phone service in the US — Ting by Tucows — but has thus far been unable to operate in its home country.

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“Inhibiting this pathway has extended life span in every species studies to date.”

Anti-aging drug appears to be working

#Health

Sat, Jul 14th, 2018 11:00 by capnasty NEWS

Technology Review reports that drugs which inhibit the aging-related pathway TORC1 has extended the life span in mice and works. The drugs boost the immune system which otherwise is less responsive as people age.

“Immune function was just one of the things that got better,” said Joan Mannick, who worked on the trial at Novartis Institutes for Biomedical Research in Massachusetts. The researchers now have plans to test the drugs on other age-related conditions, such as neurodegenerative diseases.

“This is an extremely important and exciting study,” said Matt Kaeberlein, director of the Healthy Aging and Longevity Research Institute at the University of Washington, who was not involved in the study. The mTOR inhibitors “appear to broadly rejuvenate immune function in healthy elderly people,” he added. “I think this study raises the real possibility that most middle-aged adults could benefit from short-term treatments with mTOR inhibitors.”

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“Prof Mallett has wanted to build a time machine for most of his life.”

Time travel is plausible

#Science

Fri, Jul 13th, 2018 11:00 by capnasty NEWS

According to the BBC, some respected physicists think that time travel is entirely possible and are diligenty working at making this a reality.

Prof Mallett has built a table-top device that illustrates principles he thinks could be used to build a real, working time machine. First, lasers are used to generate a circulating beam of light. The space inside this "ring laser" should become twisted, "like stirring a cup of coffee", the University of Connecticut professor explains.

Because space and time are intimately connected, warping space should also warp time. Prof Mallett's theoretical work has shown that, given enough laser intensity in a small enough space, it should be possible to alter the normally linear timeline we all inhabit.

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Jun 19“Research that could engineer dinosaurs back into existence within the next five to 10 years.” #Science
Jun 16“The only thing worse than assuming that carbon removal will save the day is assuming it will save the day.” #Environment
Jun 17“A machine meant to hurl rockets into space.” #Space
Jun 15Chinese warehouse organises, packs, and fulfills 200,000 orders a day with four people #Robots
Jun 22“In comparison to the waste produced by every other kind of electricity production, that quantity is close to zero.” #Environment
Jun 1310 Hours of Relaxing Oceanscapes from BBC Earth #Video
Jun 18“Are the puppets coming for our jobs?” #Technology
Jun 21“If I’m upset with Facebook, what’s the equivalent product I can go sign up for?” #Copyright
Jul 10“Artificial intelligence can detect your sexuality and politics just by looking at your face.” #Future
Jun 26“Sending you changes in your media feed that are calculated to adjust you slightly to the liking of some unseen advertiser.” #Internet
Jun 24The Rise and Fall of Civilisations #Space
Jun 30“The mere presence of a smartphone within glancing distance can significantly reduce your cognitive capacity.” #Telephone
Jul 20“Cultured meat is finally on its way towards becoming a commercial reality.”
Jul 21“Although this transition is irreversible, it carries potential for several robotic applications.”
Aug 29Japanese Robot Serves Ice Cream From Inside a Vending Machine
Jul 22“Affordable storage of renewable power.”
Jan 11How to Avoid Jury Duty
Jul 19“There are but two powers in the world, the sword and the mind. In the long run the sword is always beaten by the mind.”
Jan 09CaptchaTweet: Write Tweets in Captcha Form
Dec 23Why, Typewriters Are Alive and Well, Thank you
Jan 04The (Very Scary) People of Public Transit
Apr 06Bizarre Record Covers
Nov 22When the Wrong Hastag Can Get You Killed by an Assassination Drone
Nov 23Knowing how to operate a smartphone does not qualify as being tech savvy.