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Sep 21, 2015

BMW and Mercedes team on wireless car charging

Posted by in categories: energy, transportation

BMW and Mercedes-Benz are teaming up on wireless car charging, pushing a super-efficient way of refueling EVs like the BMW i8 and the Mercedes S500 Plug-In Hybrid simply by parking over a certain spot on your driveway. The system, which the two German marques hope to get accepted as the de-facto standard for wireless car recharging, promises a cut in charge times without the hassle of having to regularly plug in: BMW says the batteries in its i8 supercar, for instance, can be topped up in under two hours.

As with other such systems we’ve seen, Mercedes-Benz and BMW use a pair of coils to transmit power wirelessly. A primary coil is mounted in a floor plate, and connects with a secondary coil in the vehicle floor: an alternating magnetic field is created by the former and tracked by the latter.

However, the new system uses a circular coil which the two companies claim makes for a more productive magnetic field, with more than 90-percent efficiency. The charging rate is initially 3.6 kW, but could be ramped up to as much as 7 kW, in preparation for the next generation of higher-powered EV drivetrains car firms envisage.

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Sep 21, 2015

World’s First Climate-Controlled City Planned for Dubai

Posted by in category: futurism

Officials in Dubai announced that they are planning to build the first city with a thermostat: http://bit.ly/1qs7rLX

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Sep 21, 2015

LG Builds a TV That You Can Roll Up Like a Poster

Posted by in category: electronics

Pretty soon setting up a TV will be as easy as unrolling a poster, if LG has anything to say about it.

The Korean electronics manufacturer unveiled a new kind of big-screen display that is ultra-thin and rolls up, and it expects to put the tech into TVs by 2017.

Flexible displays have been around for years, but LG Display has taken the concept up a couple of notches with these two new 18-inch OLED panels, each with 1,200 x 800 resolution. Not only are they relatively large, but each can be rolled up tightly to a radius of just 1.2 inches without affecting the display at all.

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Sep 21, 2015

Sand-based batteries could soon power your mobile phone

Posted by in categories: energy, materials, mobile phones

Researchers at the University of California, Riverside in the US have developed lithium-ion batteries that substitute graphite with silicon extracted from sand and last three times longer than current products.

The negative side of lithium-ion batteries, or anode, is made with graphite, and scientists have been trying to find a substitute material that could make batteries last longer. One of the options is silicon, which can store up to 10 times more energy than current materials, but it’s expensive and hard to produce in large quantities.

But then a very simple but brilliant option revealed itself to graduate student Zachary Favors. As Gizmag reports, Favors was relaxing after surfing when he noticed something quite special: sand. Sand is made of quartz, or silicon dioxide, and other materials, so Favors thought he could extract the silicon and use it to make batteries.

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Sep 20, 2015

What Happens When Kids Try Dial-Up Internet For The First Time

Posted by in category: internet

Remember dial-up internet and your mum bollocking you to get off so she could use the phone? These kids don’t… Until now, the struggle of all that beeping and churning during the five minutes it it took to connect has been lost on them.

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Sep 20, 2015

Snowden says aliens could be trying to get in touch right now

Posted by in categories: alien life, encryption

Technically Incorrect: In a conversation with Neil DeGrasse Tyson, the Moscow-based NSA whistleblower offers his views on interplanetary communication. He fears their communication may be encrypted, so we’re missing it.

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Sep 20, 2015

The Search for Extraterrestrial Life and Encrypted Space Communication

Posted by in categories: alien life, encryption, existential risks, information science


Neil deGrasse Tyson and Edward Snowden recently discussed the idea that encryption mechanisms with advanced extraterrestrial species and humans could theoretically render communication as indistinguishable from cosmic background radiation. With only a short period of time in a species growth where open communication is broadcast to the stars (through the sluggish and primitive nature of radio broadcasts), this could prevent us (or other species) from making contact with one another.

With the Drake Equation stating a high probability of communicative extraterrestrial civilizations and the contrasting Fermi Paradox citing lacking evidence of such, it begs the question of whether outlying reasons have an impact. In my opinion, the Drake Equation rings true in the sense that hundreds of billions of stars exist in our galaxy alone (many with their own diverse planetary bodies), setting the stage for extraterrestrial life to disavow itself as insatiable ramblings. Unlike that which is eminent in the Fermi Paradox, I believe, in this case, a conclusion based off of inductive reasoning seems to hold more water than an evidence-only approach.

Keeping in mind the discussion in The Guardian article, a flaw of the Fermi Paradox’s evidence-based perspective should become apparent: secure, encrypted communication (cloaked by design) would render the existence of extraterrestrial intelligence invisible to the prying ear. If intentional, there could be many reasons for withholding this whereabouts of a species location. An abstract theory from science fiction may itself hold a degree of truth. An example of which, is the video game series ‘Mass Effect,’ where an advanced, sentient machine-race cleanse the galaxy of advanced life every 40,000 years. The reasoning for doing so is to “bring order to chaos” and for reasons “unfathomable.” Be it for an abstract reason such as this or simply for secure communication, the encryption of the resultant transmission’s presence wouldn’t register as noticeable to any observers. As nearly all signs of outside life would be mute, it then lays in the other senses that hold the most promise of enlightenment.

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Sep 20, 2015

For more innovative ideas, visit our website at

Posted by in categories: energy, engineering

http://www.engineeringbuddies.com/channels/innovative-ideas/

The Engineering Buddies Team
www.EngineeringBuddies.com

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Sep 20, 2015

5D optical memory in glass could record the last evidence of civilization

Posted by in category: nanotechnology

Using nanostructured glass, scientists at the University of Southampton have, for the first time, experimentally demonstrated the recording and retrieval processes of five dimensional digital data by femtosecond laser writing. The storage allows unprecedented parameters including 360 TB/disc data capacity, thermal stability up to 1000°C and practically unlimited lifetime.

Coined as the ‘Superman’ memory crystal, as the memory has been compared to the “memory crystals” used in the Superman films, the data is recorded via self-assembled nanostructures created in fused quartz, which is able to store vast quantities of data for over a million years. The information encoding is realised in five dimensions: the size and orientation in addition to the three dimensional position of these nanostructures.

A 300 kb digital copy of a text file was successfully recorded in 5D using ultrafast laser, producing extremely short and of light. The file is written in three layers of nanostructured dots separated by five micrometres.

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Sep 20, 2015

‘Tree of life’ for 2.3 million species released

Posted by in category: futurism

Version 1.0, Tree of Life.

“Tens of thousands of smaller trees have been published over the years for select branches of the tree of life—some containing upwards of 100,000 species—but this is the first time those results have been combined into a single tree that encompasses all of life.”


A first draft of the “tree of life” for the roughly 2.3 million named species of animals, plants, fungi and microbes—from platypuses to puffballs—has been released.

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