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Genius and Technology

Human ingenuity:

Appliances, machines, gadgets, apps, widgets and gizmos. They shape our lives and most of us couldn't survive without them.

Location: #science
Members: 24
Latest Activity: Dec 31, 2013

A Computer Chip

MAKE

Underwater ROV at the Edinburgh mini Maker Faire

Home designed and built ROV (left) and an OpenROV kit (right). Martin Evans builds underwater ROV’s and he brought three different type of ROV here to the Edinburgh Mini Maker Faire and I took the opportunity to talk to Martin about his builds.

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Making stuff with SplatForm at the Edinburgh mini Maker Faire

SplatForm I talked to Evan Lind—the inventor of SplatForm, a new free-form social toy system—about it, and what it's actually supposed to be for, and how he came up with the idea in the first place.

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The Edinburgh Tool Library at the Edinburgh mini Maker Faire

Tool Library You can't own every tool, and even if you're lucky enough to be a member of a hackspace or makerspace, you can't take them home if they do. Which is where the Edinburgh Tool Library comes in, it's a new charity that not only wants to lend you tools, but teach you how to use them.

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What should I see at the Edinburgh mini Maker Faire?

Screenshot 2014-04-20 14.35.53 I caught up with Maaroof Fakhri—one of the organisers' of today mini Maker Faire and asked him what you should see if you're coming to the faire.

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Wall-E the Edinburgh mini Maker Faire

WALL-E Dale Wood—a maker from Zimbabwe that now lives here in Scotland—has built a life-sized replica of Disney's WALL-E robot and it's on display at the Edinburgh mini Maker Faire.

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Comment by doone on August 18, 2013 at 6:11pm
Comment by doone on August 17, 2013 at 6:54pm

Hey, i am not living in the future of the books i read as a kid

Behold the Future of the 50s

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Behold the Future of the 50s
Comment by Chris on August 3, 2013 at 10:01pm

Might not survive moth infestation.

Comment by doone on August 3, 2013 at 8:29pm

That is an interesting idea, Chris.  

Comment by Chris on August 3, 2013 at 7:51pm

Bioluminescent trees will replace streetlights?

Most people know about light emitting organisms such as jellyfishes, fireflies and mushrooms. Some time ago, genetic engineers transferred genes responsible for the luciferin and luciferase proteins into a tobacco plant. These firefly proteins were then manufactured by the tobacco plant, causing it to glow and emit light.

What if this technology could be extended further to say, a maple tree or a juniper bush? Designer Audrey Richard-Laurent speculates on combining trees and streetlights into bioluminescent trees. In urban areas, one usually sees a row of trees parallel to streetlights. Why not hybridize them?
concept-audrey-copie_530.jpg
An elegant, yet far fetched idea? Don’t be to sure. Already in 2007 Edward A Quinto of the International Society for Bioluminescence and Chemiluminescence produced a glowing christmas tree.

Bioluminescence works to replicate processes for creating light found in chemical reactions in the natural world–such as with certain jellyfish or bacteria–for human purposes. Chemiluminescence refers to the emission of light with limited emission of heat as a result of chemical reaction. Many researchers feel that both of these processes have the potential to produce sustainable, non-petroleum-based light sources.

Other potential applications might be glow in the dark designer pets, agricultural crops and domestic plants that luminesce when they need watering, new methods for detecting bacterial contamination of meats and other foods and glowing grass on golf yards that allow you to play golf after dark.

Comment by doone on August 2, 2013 at 9:06am
Comment by Chris on July 5, 2013 at 1:09pm

Flashlight Powered By Hand's Heat

Ann Makosinski has a solution that could put an end to getting left in the dark. The 15-year old from British Columbia has invented a thermoelectric Hollow Flashlight that shines simply from the heat of your hand.

Makosinski determined that the heat of a person’s palm generates about 57 milliwatts of electricity — more than enough for the half of a milliwatt needed to illuminate her flashlight’s LED.

Key to the Hollow Flashlight are Peltier tiles, which generate electricity when one side of the tile is heated and the other is cooled. Makosinski mounted the tiles and other circuitry inside a hollow aluminum tube, where air inside the tube would cool one side of the tiles, while heat from the user’s hand would warm the other.

Her invention provided a modest amount of light and worked for a half hour at an ambient temperature of 50 degrees Fahrenheit.

“The flashlight I have made is more of a prototype then a final product, but the components in my device are quite strong,” Makosinski wrote. “Of course, if it was to be used and manufactured, I would try to seal off the electronic components in some sort of casing so that it wouldn’t get heavily exposed to the elements (example water), and therefore last longer.”

The Hollow Flashlight has earned Makosinski a spot among the 15 finalists at the Google Science Fair. In September, the Canadian teen will travel Google’s headquarters in Mountain View, California, where Google will choose a winner to receive a grand prize of $50,000 and a trip to the Galapagos Islands. Hear Makosinski wax eloquently about her invention in this video.

via NBC News Credit: Ann Makosinski, YouTube

Comment by doone on July 4, 2013 at 9:34pm
Comment by Davy on July 1, 2013 at 3:22pm

Interesting about the Roman Concrete and how they produced it!

Comment by doone on June 30, 2013 at 6:02pm

Ancient Roman Concrete: The Building Material of the Future?

June 27, 2013 at 9:45:00 AM by Tim Layton | 4 Comments
 

Image: Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory 

It only took us two millennia to figure out how the Ancient Romans made such amazingly durable concrete. Scientists at the Berkeley National Lab and a team of researchers from around the world have discovered the unique recipe used to construct Roman cities and landmarks—a surprising number of which still stand after 2000 years of use. 

Compare that with modern concrete, which is engineered to maintain its design strength for anywhere from 50 to 100 years, and you can see the value of the Roman recipe. The two most surprising ingredients: Volcanic ash and seawater. 

In addition to longevity, the Roman recipe is reported to be a much greener material, requiring substantially less energy in the manufacturing process. Making Portland cement—which makes modern concrete stick together—produces an enormous amount of CO2. It turns out that the Romans would've baked their ingredients at much lower temperatures, reducing the amount of fuel burned to make concrete. 

If you're as intrigued by this new development as I was, here's plenty more

Tim Layton is a home and DIY blogger for Popular Mechanics. Follow him on Twitter: @RemodelingGuy



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