Intelligence and monitoring

The Verge - by James Vincent - 03/14/2016

It's all about timing, say the researchers from Stanford University responsible for creating the incredibly strong microrobots above. If you want to move large weights with tiny bots, they say, it's better to concentrate on precise movements executed in perfect harmony, than powerful single tugs. With this in mind, the scientists from the Biomimetics and Dexterous Manipulation Laboratory (BDML) were able to use just six of their 17-gram microTug robots to pull an 1,800 kg car.

Discovery News - by Tracy Staedter - 02/03/2016

Trees are a natural resource and for anyone in the business of growing and selling lumber, getting the most for your money is key.

Plus, with only 3 trillion trees on the entire planet, no one wants to see a tree go to waste. Unfortunately about 20 percent of trees harvested are not used and end up on the scrap pile.

NBC News - by James Eng - 02/01/2016

Data centers store massive amounts of information that our computers and smartphones access every day from "the cloud." Traditionally, they've all been built on land, often in remote locations, but Microsoft thinks there may be an advantage to putting them underwater.

Crave - by Paul Tamburro - 01/27/2016

The Fontus aims to be cyclists' new best friend, with the self-filling bottle providing fresh drinking water from out of thin air.

Created by Austrian industrial designer Kristof Retezár, the Fontus collects the moisture contained in the air, with this moisture then able to be transformed into drinkable water within an hour. This process works by way of a small cooler located in its center, branded the Peltier Element.

Digital Trends - by Brandon Widder - 01/05/2016

Water is a precious commodity, whether you’re living in a remote region of Singapore or downtown Los Angeles. That said, wouldn’t it be nice if there was a better way to monitor your water consumption, so you can cut back on costs and reduce your aquatic footprint without having to guesstimate how many gallons you eat up on the daily? Enter the Hydrao Smart Shower, an eco-sensitive shower head designed to monitor and inform you of your consumption as you shower.

Science Mag - by Nala Rogers - 01/04/2016

That periodic table poster on your wall is about to be out of date, thanks to four new chemical elements that just received official recognition. The newcomers are some of the heaviest ever discovered, with atomic numbers of 113, 115, 117, and 118. They will be named by the researchers who identified them, the final step before the elements take up their rightful places in the seventh row of the periodic table.

The Verge - by Jacob Kastrenakes - 01/04/2016

The new type of Wi-Fi is being called Wi-Fi HaLow (pronounced "halo") and will be an extension of the upcoming 802.11ah standard. The Wi-Fi Alliance intends to begin certifying HaLow products sometime in 2018, but the first of them may begin shipping shortly before then.

Essentially, this is Wi-Fi's answer to Bluetooth. HaLow is supposed to end up inside of fitness trackers, home sensors, security cameras, and an assortment of other single-purpose home gadgets. Wi-Fi is already inside of some of those things — like cameras — but getting inside of wearables and sensors is going to be a fight. HaLow will truly need to be a better option than Bluetooth. The Wi-Fi Alliance won't mention Bluetooth by name, but it implies that HaLow is comparable. "HaLow will provide similar characteristics in terms to battery life to technologies that are out there today," says Kevin Robinson, the alliance's marketing VP.

Android Authority - by Rob Triggs - 01/04/2016

LG Display is betting big on OLED and flexible displays for the future and the company is showcasing an 18-inch display prototype that you can bend and roll at this year’s Consumer Electronics Show. The idea has been in the concept stages for a while, but LG is finally ready to reveal it.

Engadget - by Jamie Rigg - 12/18/2015

Recent history has taught us we can't expect our smartphones to last more than a day on a single charge. Bigger batteries are an uninspired solution and fast-charging a minor consolation, so it's no wonder researchers and companies alike are trying to develop new, more efficient battery tech. As Nikkei reports, Sony's in the same boat, working on new types of batteries that could carry 40 percent more energy than lithium-ion counterparts (fun fact: Sony developed the first commercial Li-ion battery).

BGR - by Zach Epstein - 12/08/2015

Researchers at the Eindhoven University of Technology in Eindhoven, Netherlands have created the world’s smallest temperature sensor chip, but its size isn’t even the most impressive thing about it. The remarkable new temperature sensor is able to draw power from radio waves being broadcast by the same wireless network it uses to communicate. As a result, the chip doesn’t need a battery and never needs to be charged, representing a major leap forward for the Internet of Things and for electronics in general.