The Human Media Lab at Canada’s Queen’s University have created a fully-functioning paper computer using E-Ink smartphone. Tthe Paperphone can do things like making and receiving calls, storing e-books, and playing music. However, its unique physical properties allows it to be flexible like paper and write on with a pen says Roel Vergaal, director of the Human Media Lab.
It is 9.5-cm (3.74 inch) thick with flexible E-ink display. The sensors allow it to be recognized differently based on bending gestures while navigating menus, making phone calls, selecting music, or other common smart phone functions. It does not even use electricity when not being used. The team also created a similar device called the Snaplet that can be worn on the wristband.
Created by Alderbaran Robotics, this 23-inch tall robot has a full range of motion that allows it to walk, pick up small objects and process audio and visual data to navigate it’s way around. Also, it’s cute. Not incredibly useful, yet, but really really cute.
And it’s not even Japanese, it’s French. Color me surprised.
Here’s a little video of it in action:
Before you start thinking “oh, how underwhelming“, stop and think about how far we’ve come. It’s only the beginning (or beginning of the middle, maybe).
Anything with “cyberglove” in the title is going to have serious cool potential in my book. The robotic hand can be operated remotely by a human wearing the sensor glove to perform actions as delicate as cradling an egg, changing a lightbulb or writing with a pen.
Maybe it doesn’t have a lot of consumer applications, but how cool would it be to have “Remote robotics operator” as your job title?
I’ve noticed that my posts here all seem to conform to one of the following: science geek, sci-fi nerd, art and design, sustainability, and cute/Japanese/weird. I can’t help it. These are all my favorite things. On a good day I can bridge several of these into one post. Today is one such day. Today I found Labware Lamps by Benjamin Hubert!
So this would be science geek/art and design. It’s a series of hand blown white glass lamps of three shapes inspired by traditional laboratory beakers. They are necessarily a little heftier than real ones and are plugged with Portuguese cork (not sure how necessary it is that the cork is Portuguese but it sounds real nice, don’t it?).
These beaker lamps led me to another excellent site (one which I immediately bookmarked for later investigation) called mocoloco.com, a site dedicated to design, interiors, art and architecture. Cool stuff, check it out!
So I’ve started to design my ideal office, in my head. One of each of the beaker lamps on 3 levels of bracketless shelving that jut out of the brick walls, the Steamer Trunk mobile office, walnut colored bamboo flooring, and giant windows overlooking the bustling concrete city of Trantor. Either that or the view from Rick Deckard’s apartment.
Now let’s see who can guess, without looking, which two famous sci-fi authors I have referenced in this post;-)
Now here is a piece of art that will make you think about energy consumption…
The Blood Lamp…
For the lamp to work one breaks the top off, dissolves the powder, and uses their own blood to power a simple light. By creating a lamp that can only be used once, the user must consider when light is needed the most, forcing them to rethink how wasteful they are with energy, and how precious it is.
Accordin to Seth Godin, networking is always important when it’s real and a useless distraction when it’s fake. We all know the Facebook or MySpace guy or girl with over a thousand friends. A “friend” on social networks like Facebook or MySpace requires commitment by the recipient to accept. This has been played out so much that it really doesn’t mean anything if there is no continuing engagement between the two parties. Twitter is slightly different in that it has “followers”. You can follow a person’s update status without commitment from the other to follow you. Facebook, similarly, now has Pages with fans which work the same. You can become a fan of a Facebook celebrity, artist, or business page without the page having to follow you.
You Star Trek geeks out there should appreciate this one.
Today my friend sent me this:
Scientists at Oxford have developed TRANSPARENT ALUMINUM (or as they probably say over there “aluminium”).
Using a FLASH laser (no idea what that is, btw) they knocked out an electron from every aluminum atom in a lab sample.
“What we have created is a completely new state of matter nobody has seen before,” said Professor Justin Wark.
That’s pretty cool, I have to say! Granted, the sample was less than a 20th the width of a human hair and the amount of energy required to create this “new state of matter” was equal to that of a power plant providing electricity to an entire city (though what size city is never made clear). But they say this technology may be able to help in the quest for generating power using nuclear fusion.
I, however, like it mostly for it’s nerd factor. About 9.5 out of 10.
People with a photographic memory often say it’s a curse. People without are usually, like me, jealous of those that have one. How cool would it be to remember anything and everything you see and be able to recall it at any time necessary at a later date. No more asking for directions, no more trouble recalling information, no more cramming for tests. No more trying to remember that person’s name or phone number. The applications are endless.
Now imagine you could take a pill and BAM! everything you see is committed to memory without any effort.
Well some scientists in Spain think they have singled out a protein that can extend the life of visual memory significantly. When the production of the protein was boosted in mice, the rodents’ visual memory retention increased from about an hour to almost two months.
Will you remember what this protein looks like in two months?
This memory extension only applies to memories made through the poorly understood visual cortex of the brain. So you won’t be able to remember everything you hear, only everything you see. But still!
The implications of having a pill that could do this are staggering. I’m not sure even William Gibson himself could imagine all the repercussions, but I’ll have fun pondering it none the less.