Engineering'Duet of 1' possible with hand-controlled voice synthesizer
New technology at the University of British Columbia makes it possible for a person to speak or sing just by using their hands to control a speech synthesizer.
Tongue drive system goes inside the mouth to improve performance and user comfort
The Tongue Drive System is getting less conspicuous and more capable. Tongue Drive is a wireless device that enables people with high-level spinal cord injuries to operate a computer and maneuver an electrically powered wheelchair simply by moving their tongues.
Future smart phones will project images on the wall
Mobile phones currently on the market are capable of showing high quality images and video, but the phones' small size sets insurmountable limits on screen size, and thus the viewing experience. VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland, EpiCrystals Oy and the Aalto University are developing a better laser light source for projectors that will be integrated into mobile phones, which will enable accurate and efficient projection of, for example, photographs and movies on any surface. Mobile phones equipped with the laser light source can be within the ordinary consumer's reach already in a few years time.
UBC researcher invents lab on a chip device to study malaria
University of British Columbia researcher Hongshen Ma has developed a simple and accurate device to study malaria, a disease that currently affects 500 million people per year worldwide and claims a million lives.
What aakes a robot fish attractive? (Hint: it's in the moves)
Probing the largely unexplored question of what characteristics make a leader among schooling fish, researchers have discovered that by mimicking nature, a robotic fish can transform into a leader of live ones.
A new direction for game controllers
University of Utah engineers designed a new kind of video game controller that not only vibrates like existing devices, but pulls and stretches the thumb tips in different directions to simulate the tug of a fishing line, the recoil of a gun or the feeling of ocean waves.
Cebit 2012: 3D animations for everyone
3D movies like "Toy Story" or "Transformers" are based on everyday objects that are able to move like humans. Such 3D characters are created by skilled experts in time-consuming manual work. Computer scientists at the Max Planck Institute for Informatics have now developed two computer programs that can accomplish the same process in mere seconds and can easily be handled even by inexperienced users. The researchers presented their unique software for the first time at F34 in Hall 26 at the Cebit from March 6 -10, 2012.
3D-printer with nano-precision
Printing three dimensional objects with incredibly fine details is now possible using "two-photon lithography". With this technology, tiny structures on a nanometer scale can be fabricated. Researchers at the Vienna University of Technology (TU Vienna) have now made a major breakthrough in speeding up this printing technique: The high-precision-3D-printer at TU Vienna is orders of magnitude faster than similar devices. This opens up completely new areas of application, such as in medicine.
Engineers boost computer processor performance by over 20 percent
Researchers from North Carolina State University have developed a new technique that allows graphics processing units (GPUs) and central processing units (CPUs) on a single chip to collaborate - boosting processor performance by an average of more than 20 percent.
Harnessing nature's solar cells
Photovoltaic panels made from plant material could become a cheap, easy alternative to traditional solar cells.
Jellyfish inspires latest ocean-powered robot
American researchers have created a robotic jellyfish, named Robojelly, which not only exhibits characteristics ideal to use in underwater search and rescue operations, but could, theoretically at least, never run out of energy thanks to it being fuelled by hydrogen.
Yale research offers new way to see inside solids
Researchers at Yale University have developed a new way of seeing inside solid objects, including animal bones and tissues, potentially opening a vast array of dense materials to a new type of detailed internal inspection.
A camera that peers around corners
In December, MIT Media Lab researchers caused a stir by releasing a slow-motion video of a burst of light traveling the length of a plastic bottle. But the experimental setup that enabled that video was designed for a much different application: a camera that can see around corners.
A capsule for removing radioactive contamination from milk, fruit juices, other beverages
Amid concerns about possible terrorist attacks with nuclear materials, and fresh memories of environmental contamination from the 2011 Fukushima Daiichi nuclear disaster in Japan, scientists described development of a capsule that can be dropped into water, milk, fruit juices and other foods to remove more than a dozen radioactive substances.
Engineers set their sights on asteroid deflection
Pioneering engineers at the University of Strathclyde in Glasgow are developing an innovative technique based on lasers that could radically change asteroid deflection technology.
Transparent memory chips are coming
Want a see-through cellphone you can wrap around your wrist? Such a thing may be possible before long, according to Rice University chemist James Tour, whose lab has developed transparent, flexible memories using silicon oxide as the active component.
A new dimension for solar energy
Intensive research around the world has focused on improving the performance of solar photovoltaic cells and bringing down their cost. But very little attention has been paid to the best ways of arranging those cells, which are typically placed flat on a rooftop or other surface, or sometimes attached to motorized structures that keep the cells pointed toward the sun as it crosses the sky.
'Buckliball' opens new avenue in design of foldable engineering structures
Motivated by the desire to determine the simplest 3-D structure that could take advantage of mechanical instability to collapse reversibly, a group of engineers at MIT and Harvard University were stymied - until one of them happened across a collapsible, spherical toy that resembled the structures they'd been exploring, but with a complex layout of 26 solid moving elements and 48 rotating hinges.
Bright is the new black: New York roofs go cool
On the hottest day of the New York City summer in 2011, a white roof covering was measured at 42 degrees Fahrenheit cooler than the traditional black roof it was being compared to, according to a study including NASA scientists that details the first scientific results from the city's unprecedented effort to brighten rooftops and reduce its "urban heat island" effect.
Nanotube technology leading to fast, lower-cost medical diagnostics
Researchers at Oregon State University have tapped into the extraordinary power of carbon "nanotubes" to increase the speed of biological sensors, a technology that might one day allow a doctor to routinely perform lab tests in minutes, speeding diagnosis and treatment while reducing costs.