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    Tech  
    Tesla is testing a charger prototype that finds and connects to the car automatically. Cool
    Tech  
    "Imprisoned by their own father on their family's property, two siblings with terrifying supernatural powers plot their escape and vengeance. Starring Mad Men's Kiernan Shipka. "
    Array
    Tech  
    NASA's Kepler mission has confirmed the first near-Earth-size planet in the “habitable zone” around a sun-like star. This discovery and the introduction of 11 other new small habitable zone candidate planets mark another milestone in the journey to finding another “Earth.”
    The newly discovered Kepler-452b is the smallest planet to date discovered orbiting in the habitable zone -- the area around a star where liquid water could pool on the surface of an orbiting planet -- of a G2-type star, like our sun. The confirmation of Kepler-452b brings the total number of confirmed planets to 1,030.
    "On the 20th anniversary year of the discovery that proved other suns host planets, the Kepler exoplanet explorer has discovered a planet and star which most closely resemble the Earth and our Sun," said John Grunsfeld, associate administrator of NASA’s Science Mission Directorate at the agency’s headquarters in Washington. “This exciting result brings us one step closer to finding an Earth 2.0."
    Kepler-452b is 60 percent larger in diameter than Earth and is considered a super-Earth-size planet. While its mass and composition are not yet determined, previous research suggests that planets the size of Kepler-452b have a good chance of being rocky.
    While Kepler-452b is larger than Earth, its 385-day orbit is only 5 percent longer. The planet is 5 percent farther from its parent star Kepler-452 than Earth is from the Sun. Kepler-452 is 6 billion years old, 1.5 billion years older than our sun, has the same temperature, and is 20 percent brighter and has a diameter 10 percent larger.
    “We can think of Kepler-452b as an older, bigger cousin to Earth, providing an opportunity to understand and reflect upon Earth’s evolving environment," said Jon Jenkins, Kepler data analysis lead at NASA's Ames Research Center in Moffett Field, California, who led the team that discovered Kepler-452b. "It’s awe-inspiring to consider that this planet has spent 6 billion years in the habitable zone of its star; longer than Earth. That’s substantial opportunity for life to arise, should all the necessary ingredients and conditions for life exist on this planet. [ link ]
    Tech  
    "After learning new software and programming languages, Stanford students in the Artificial Intelligence Laboratory have an opportunity to choose a creative task and design a robot to perform the task for demonstration. The tasks call for a wide range of fundamental skills, but generally require the robot to sense where it is in space, detect objects around it, and then autonomously interact with those objects in its environment. Recent projects include pingpong, the Japanese cup-and-ball game, Kendama, and a landing pad that helps a quad-copter touch down safely. "
    Tech  
    World's first airborne wind turbine will bring energy to remote areas. I think this is a neat concept- I am curious to know the cost/kilowatt based on this design.
    From their website: "Altaeros Energies is announcing the first planned commercial demonstration of its BAT (Buoyant Airborne Turbine) product in partnership with the Alaska Energy Authority. The Alaska project will deploy the BAT at a height of 1,000 feet above ground, a height that will break the world record for the highest wind turbine in the world. Altaeros has designed the BAT to generate consistent, low cost energy for the remote power and microgrid market, including remote and island communities; oil & gas, mining, agriculture, and telecommunication firms; disaster relief organizations; and military bases. The BAT uses a helium-filled, inflatable shell to lift to high altitudes where winds are stronger and more consistent than those reached by traditional tower-mounted turbines. High strength tethers hold the BAT steady and send electricity down to the ground. The lifting technology is adapted from aerostats, industrial cousins of blimps, which have lifted heavy communications equipment into the air for decades."
    Tech  
    Sam Van Aken, an artist and professor at Syracuse University, uses "chip grafting" to create trees that each bear 40 different varieties of stone fruits, or fruits with pits. The grafting process involves slicing a bit of a branch with a bud from a tree of one of the varieties and inserting it into a slit in a branch on the "working tree," then wrapping the wound with tape until it heals and the bud starts to grow into a new branch. Over several years he adds slices of branches from other varieties to the working tree. In the spring the "Tree of 40 Fruit" has blossoms in many hues of pink and purple, and in the summer it begins to bear the fruits in sequence—Van Aken says it's both a work of art and a time line of the varieties' blossoming and fruiting. He's created more than a dozen of the trees that have been planted at sites such as museums around the U.S., which he sees as a way to spread diversity on a small scale.
    Tech  
    This simulated flyover of Pluto’s Norgay Montes (Norgay Mountains) and Sputnik Planum (Sputnik Plain) was created from New Horizons closest-approach images. Norgay Montes have been informally named for Tenzing Norgay, one of the first two humans to reach the summit of Mount Everest. Sputnik Planum is informally named for Earth’s first artificial satellite. The images were acquired by the Long Range Reconnaissance Imager (LORRI) on July 14 from a distance of 48,000 miles (77,000 kilometers). Features as small as a half-mile (1 kilometer) across are visible.
    Tech  
    Nick and Gary from Sneaky Zebra have spent the past weekend filming cosplayers at SDCC to create yet another amazing cosplay music video.
    "Comic Con 2015 filled with amazing people, fantastic events and of course some of the most talented cosplayers around! We took our camera and filmed with the best we could find."
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    Tech  
    On July 14, 2015, the New Horizons spacecraft will zip past Pluto and its five known moons. Nobody really knows what it will find.
    Tech  
    "See how Microsoft HoloLens transforms the way we teach anatomy and our understanding of the human body as we help to prepare the next generation of doctors."
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    Tech  
    Ready to explore Pluto? NASA’s New Horizons - the fastest spacecraft ever created - will speed past Pluto on July 14, 2015, beaming back high resolution photos (and invaluable data) of the dwarf planet’s surface for the first time in human history.
    Array
    Tech  


    Pepper robots are also used in Softbank stores as shop assistants.  The mobile carrier said 1,000 units of the household robot sold out in one minute on Saturday, its first day of consumer sales. Equipped with the latest voice and emotion recognition technology, Pepper is able to read people's facial expressions and listen to their tone of voice to analyse how they're feeling.  'Pepper will be able to explain Nescafé products and services and engage in conversation with consumers, ' said Kohzoh Takaoka, president and chief executive of Nestlé Japan at the time.  The Aldebaran robots retail from 198,000 yen (£1,107 or $1,600) and can understand 80 per cent of conversations.  The 1ft 11in (58cm) bot also has touch sensors, can speak 19 languages and is able to read and respond to emotions, by analysing facial expressions. This analysis is made using embedded software called NAOqi.
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    Tech  
    ESA astronaut Samantha Cristoforetti is currently living on board the International Space Station for her long duration mission Futura. Food is an important item in space, also on the psychological side; that's why astronauts are allowed a certain quantity of the so-called "bonus food" of their choice that reminds them of their home cooking tastes.
    Tech  
    At Google's Advanced Technology and Projects group, or ATAP, Project Soli is the first of two projects led by legendary interaction designer Ivan Poupyrev that is trying to decouple the way we interact with our devices from touchscreens. It's a tiny radar, small enough to fit into a 1.5-inch smartwatch, that can understand the gestures your fingers make even though they never touch a screen.
    "Project Soli is developing a new interaction sensor using radar technology. The sensor can track sub-millimeter motions at high speed and accuracy. It fits onto a chip, can be produced at scale and built into small devices and everyday objects. "
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    Tech  
    In a leap for robotic development, the MIT researchers who built a robotic cheetah have now trained it to see and jump over hurdles as it runs — making this the first four-legged robot to run and jump over obstacles autonomously.
    Tech  
    NASA Langley researchers designed and built a battery-powered, 10-engine remotely piloted aircraft. The Greased Lightning GL-10 prototype has a 10-foot wingspan and can take off like a helicopter and fly efficiently like an airplane. In this video, engineers successfully transition the plan from hover to wing-borne flight in tests at Fort A.P. Hill in Virginia.
    Tech  
    Google today launched a standalone, unlimited photo and video service called Google Photos. Google Photos is a free and unlimited storage. The only limits on this service are that photos are capped at 16 MP and videos at 1080P. A new Photos app is coming to Android, iOS, and Web.
    Array
    Tech  


    Aria is a small add-on that clips underneath a smartwatch band and lets you control the device with finger gestures. The remote control-like clip-on can access any feature you'd usually access through the touch screen or the watch dial, completely freeing up your other hand for tasks like eating, drinking or talking on the phone.  Possible gestures include tapping, flicking your fingers, and closing and opening your hand -- you can configure it all through its companion app.
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    Tech  
    This is a short documentary by The New York Times, title  “The Bionic Man” that also shows Prosthetic Limbs, Controlled by Thought.
    Les Baugh lost his arms as a teenager. Engineers at Johns Hopkins are trying to give them back, but better. Mr. Baugh is testing a robotic prosthetic that he can control with his mind.
    Array
    Tech  


    The Proprio Foot by Össur is a brain-controlled bionic foot that matches natural foot motion. The device is controlled by special sensors implanted in the owner’s leg muscle. When a signal from the brain reaches the sensors, they relay the signal to the Proprio Foot to make the appropriate action.
    "But the biggest benefit he's seen is a surprising one. “You have to learn how to use those muscles again,” says Olafsson. “How to tighten them up, in front and back. And that's the main thing. Those muscles start getting bigger, so you get better at walking. I have more stamina. My gait is better. I don't limp as much.” By forcing the wearer to actively use muscles that were previously ignored, sensor-connected limbs could halt or reverse their deterioration. It's a reminder that, despite the urge among the able-bodied to obsess over cybernetic enhancements, bionic limbs are chiefly medical devices for now, designed to restore function. That a brain-controlled bionic leg would also promote muscle growth is stranger, and more exciting, than all of the superpowered cyborgs that science fiction has to offer. "
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