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China's Alibaba sure knows how to move product (it is one of the world's biggest e-commerce companies, after all), and for its move into the automotive space it is pulling out all the stops. Customers looking to buy a new ride through the company will soon be able to take it for a test drive first, right after it's spat out of a gigantic cat-themed vending machine...Continue Reading Alibaba t
In 2012, the US Office of Naval Research (ONR) began a five-year, US$98-million program to develop an autonomous flight system that could be retrofitted to existing helicopters. Now, Aurora Flight Sciences has successfully demonstrated such a system at Marine Corps Base Quantico in Virginia. A US Marine Corps UH-1H helicopter fitted with the Autonomous Aerial Cargo Utility System (AACUS) demo
Unpleasant as it is, pain serves an important function by telling us that something is wrong. But for people suffering from chronic pain conditions, the message is blaring constantly, and conventional painkillers aren't all that effective. Now, a new hope for relief might have been found in the strange case of an Italian family, who all have a genetic mutation that makes them feel almost no p
Data from the Kepler Space Telescope has revealed the Kepler-90 system ties with our own for the most number of planets known to orbit a single star. The discovery of an eighth exoplanet, Kepler-90i, revolving around its Sun-like star located 2,545 light years away in the constellation of Draco, was achieved using artificial intelligence software programmed to detect the distinct light signat
The Tesla Semi electric truck is officially in for some competition. This week, Los Angeles-based Thor Trucks announced its ET-One. Capable of hauling 80,000 lb (36,287 kg) with instant torque at zero RPM, it has a claimed range of 300 miles (500 km) per charge of its lithium-ion battery pack...Continue Reading Thor Trucks launches Tesla Semi rivalCategory: AutomotiveTags: Electric tr
We've been hearing a lot lately about robots that are designed to operate in hazardous environments such as disaster sites. In these types of places, it's entirely possible that their locomotion system could be damaged. Would that just stop them in their tracks? Perhaps not, if they're anything like the brittle star-inspired robot created at Japan's Tohoku and Hokkaido universities...Continue
The Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) has announced the finalists for its 2018 International Prize. Including a total of 62 buildings, from starchitect-designed billion-dollar projects, to low-budget social housing and everything in between, it's a great opportunity to take a gander at some top-drawer architecture. ..Continue Reading Cream of the crop: The 62 buildings in the runn
Speaker cabinets are usually made from wood or, for penny pinching, plastic – though we have seen speakers made using other materials like glass and concrete. Michele Gastaldello and Giacomo Munari have mixed Italian design with good old-fashioned stone masonry for their Stones Speakers line now raising funds on Kickstarter...Continue Reading Stones Speakers put the rock in rock 'n' rollCateg
Scientists are always on the lookout for safer, more natural ways to power devices that go into our bodies. After all, who really needs toxic battery elements and replacement surgeries? One organism that is pretty good at generating biocompatible power (for itself, at least) is the electric eel, and scientists have now used the high-voltage species as a blueprint for a promising new self-char
In today's concrete jungle, pavement takes up a lot of space, so we might as well cram some smarts in there. Previously we've seen ground coverings that light up, absorb solar energy, generate electricity from the footsteps of pedestrians, and even emit Wi-Fi signals. Now NASA is combining a little of all of those in a high-tech new path due to greet visitors to the Kennedy Space Center...Con

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