Transport Tech 

An Electric Corvette Could Destroy a World Record—Again

Over the next three days, a heavily modified Corvette will run blistering laps up and down a stretch of concrete originally built for Space Shuttle landings. Driver Johnny Bohmer will be at the wheel, on Nasa’s landing strip at the Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral, Florida. He’ll be trying to set the world record for the fastest, road legal, all-electric car. Built by Maryland based Genovation, the car he’s driving already holds the world record; this electrified Corvette hit 186.8mph in February of 2016. But its developers want more.…

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Other Tech 

NEW SOLID OXIDE FUEL CELL TECHNOLOGY

Scientists are tirelessly working on sources of alternative energy so that we can have a better substitute for fossil fuels in near future. We know that sunlight, wind and geothermal sources of energy are better for everyone. But they also need efficient fuel cells for better utilization of power. Solid oxide fuel cells (SOFCs) seem promising enough for both stationary and mobile applications. Stationary use can cover residential applications to power plants. Mobile applications contain energy for ships at sea and in space, as well as for automobiles. Another advantage of the…

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Transport Tech 

Improved Batteries for Electric Cars Could Recharge in Seconds

Researchers may have found a way to drastically increase the performance of the lithium ion batteries that power everything from electric cars to laptops. By reconfiguring the battery to allow lithium ions to rush in and out about 100 times faster than before, researchers say they’ve created a prototype that provides fast bursts of power and also, crucially, recharges in seconds. A prototype of a battery made with the new technique could be charged in less than 20 seconds compared to the six minutes it took to charge cells made in the standard…

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IT 

Oculus Project Lets You Feel in VR without Gloves

Haptics are a happening area in virtual reality these days. The term refers to devices and technologies that produce tactile sensations to go along with all those immersive visuals and sounds. The makers of the Oculus Rift, along with parent company Facebook, are working on a potential haptic add-on to their virtual reality headset. It’s called HapticWave, and it’s kind of like a omnidirectional virtual reality glove, without the glove. I swear — write about this stuff long enough and everything starts to sound like a Zen koan. According to an interesting report…

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Other Tech 

3 Implications of Memory-Boosting Devices

In fall, DARPA announced a major success in its Restoring Active Memory (RAM) program. Researchers implanted targeted electrical arrays in the brains of a few dozen volunteers — specifically in brain areas involved in memory. The researchers found a way to read out neural “key codes” associated with specific memories, and then fed those codes back into the volunteers’ brains as they tried to recall lists of items or directions to places. While the results are still preliminary, DARPA claims that the RAM technique has already achieved “promising results” in improving memory…

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Transport Tech 

Aston Martin’s $3M Hypercar Takes F1 Performance to the Road

Formula 1 cars sit at the extremes of engineering. They reach 60 mph in less than three seconds and, given the right track, approach 230 mph flat-out. Their engines sing at 18,000 RPM, more than twice the speed of most road car engines. Drivers experience at least four times the force of gravity in turns, an experience that would leave you struggling to hold your head up after a few laps. Driving an F1 car at speed demands exceptional reflexes and conditioning, which explains why even rookies are among the…

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IT 

Computer scientists find way to make all that glitters more realistic in computer graphics

Iron Man’s suit. Captain America’s shield. The Batmobile. These all could look a lot more realistic thanks to a new algorithm developed by a team of U.S. computer graphics experts. The researchers, led by Professor Ravi Ramamoorthi at the University of California San Diego, have created a method to improve how computer graphics software reproduces the way light interacts with extremely small details, called glints, on the surface of a wide range of materials, including metallic car paints, metal finishes for electronics and injection-molded plastic finishes. The method developed by…

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Transport Tech 

One Small Step for Flying Cars

A drone’s flying test may help pave the way for flying cars. In early December, U.S. regulators gave their approval for unmanned hover tests of a miniature flying car model made by the company Terrafugia. Such testing would provide feedback for eventually building a full-size version of a flying car capable of hovering for vertical takeoff and landing. Contrary to some more breathless news headlines, this does not mean the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has cleared a hover-capable flying car for flight tests in U.S. airspace. Instead, Terrafugia only received…

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IT 

Virtual Reality In Healthcare: Where’s the Innovation?

Virtual reality is no longer just about video gaming; it holds promise as nothing short of revolutionary for just about every other industry, as well. Since 2012, there has been an incredible explosion of interest and hype around mass market virtual reality (VR) thanks to head mounted display (HMD) products in development like the Oculus Rift, HTC Vive, Gear VR and Google Cardboard. The technology has advanced to the point where very high-quality VR experiences are possible at reasonable price points, and should be widely available to consumers within a year. There are a few industries that have been making use of VR…

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Transport Tech 

So Digital Billboard Ads Change With the Speed of Traffic Now

You hate creeping through traffic. But advertisers love it, because you’re a captured audience with plenty of time to consume sophisticated messages. If you’re zipping along, they have just a moment to pitch you burgers, or tires, or cloud services. In the days of yore—like, last year—that meant Mad Men had to choose between big visuals targeting leadfoots and text-heavy spots for the rush hour warrior. Digital billboards supplied with data from Internet services company Inrix lets them deliver both. For five weeks this summer, eight digital billboards along highways…

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