source: cnet.com

The pedestrian bridge took four years of research and 4.9 tons of stainless steel to construct.

If you thought 3D-printed scooters were cool, wait till you see where you can take them if you happen to be in Amsterdam. Earlier this month, engineers installed the world’s first 3D-printed steel bridge, over the Oudezijds Achterburgwal canal in Amsterdam’s Red Light District. After being dedicated by Queen Maxima of the Netherlands, the bridge is now open to pedestrians and cyclists (and, presumably, scooterists), according to a report from the Imperial College of London.

Physical construction of the bridge took four giant, torch-wielding robots six months to complete, layer by painstaking layer, using a net total of 4.9 tons of steel. However, before that process began, scientists at Dutch company MX3D spent four years on preliminary research and development to make sure the finished product would be sound.

Transient pacemaker harmlessly dissolves in body

Wireless, fully implantable device gives temporary pacing without requiring removal

source: sciencedaily.com

Researchers at Northwestern and George Washington (GW) universities have developed the first-ever transient pacemaker — a wireless, battery-free, fully implantable pacing device that disappears after it’s no longer needed.

The thin, flexible, lightweight device could be used in patients who need temporary pacing after cardiac surgery or while waiting for a permanent pacemaker. All components of the pacemaker are biocompatible and naturally absorb into the body’s biofluids over the course of five to seven weeks, without needing surgical extraction.

Continue reading “Transient Pacemaker Harmlessly Dissolves In Body”

8 Free Streaming Services to Save You From Subscription Hell

source: wired.com

You may not have heard of Tubi, Pluto TV, or Kanopy—but they’re the perfect cure for subscription fatigue.

THE MAIN CASUALTY of the streaming wars so far has been your wallet. Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, HBO Max, Hulu, Apple TV+, Disney+, Discovery+: They all demand a monthly tithe. Toss in a live service like YouTube TV, the music app of your choice, and whatever gaming concoction suits your needs, and you’re suddenly ringing up a pretty grim bill. But wait! Recent years have seen a bumper crop of free streaming services as well. They’re the perfect cure for subscription fatigue.

The old adage that you get what you pay for does apply here to some extent. Free streaming services typically don’t have as many viewing options as their paid counterparts, and most make you watch a few ads along the way. But they’re also better than you might expect, and they continue to improve. Some even include original programming, or something close to it; the Roku Channel acquired the rights to dozens of shows that originally appeared on the ill-fated Quibi streaming service, and it began showing them on Thursday.

While you shouldn’t expect any of the following free streaming services to replace Netflix in your streaming regimen, you shouldn’t count them out either. Each almost certainly offers at least something you want to watch, and they won’t cost you an arm and a leg—or anything at all—to take advantage.

 

 

OK, this could potentially be confusing, since Roku is made up of thousands of “channels,” including the majors like Hulu and HBO Now. But it also operates the Roku Channel, which offers an eclectic mix of movies and TV shows. Typically it doesn’t have much that’s new new, although you can find plenty of older hits like Troy and The Queen, along with slightly musty television classics like Alias and 3rd Rock From the Sun. (Most notably: It has the full run of The Prisoner, the original 1967 version, which you should watch right now if you haven’t already.)

Continue reading “8 Free Streaming Services to Save You From Subscription Hell”

 

Advanced Computer Model Enables Improvements to “Bionic Eye” Technology

Researchers at Keck School of Medicine of There are millions of people who face the loss of their eyesight from degenerative eye diseases. The genetic disorder retinitis pigmentosa alone affects 1 in 4,000 people worldwide.

Today, there is technology available to offer partial eyesight to people with that syndrome. The Argus II, the world’s first retinal prosthesis, reproduces some functions of a part of the eye essential to vision, to allow users to perceive movement and shapes.

While the field of retinal prostheses is still in its infancy, for hundreds of users around the globe, the “bionic eye” enriches the way they interact with the world on a daily basis. For instance, seeing outlines of objects enables them to move around unfamiliar environments with increased safety.

That is just the start. Researchers are seeking future improvements upon the technology, with an ambitious objective in mind.

 

 

 

 

Continue reading “Advanced Computer Model Enables…”

 

 

 

Ready for Post-Vaccine Life? This Astronaut Explains How to Reenter Society After a Long Time Away

source: fastcompany.com

Douglas Wheelock spent five months on the International Space Station before coming back to Earth. He says we’re all about to have a small version of the same experience, and it helps to be ready.

“The planet,” says decorated NASA astronaut Douglas Wheelock, “is this beautiful explosion of life and color during the day, and just raging with light and motion at night. It’s this oasis of life in this vast, empty, dark sea of just blackness.” Those were his impressions of the earth as viewed from the International Space Station, where he spent five months in 2010. “I’m kind of ashamed that I lived so many years without realizing how special our existence is in this universe.”

source: cbsnews.com

What is an NFT? The Trendy Blockchain Technology Explained

n early March, a tech company bought a piece of art worth $95,000. Then the executives lit it on fire. At the end of the spectacle, which was shared live on the internet, the group unveiled a copy of the art, this time in digital form. The creation, by elusive British artist Banksy, was called “Morons (White).”

As for the digital format, it’s getting more hype than the painting and the burning put together. It’s a rising type of technology called a non-fungible token, or NFT. Think of an NFT as a unique proof of ownership over something you can’t usually hold in your hand — a piece of digital art, a digital coupon, maybe a video clip. Like the digital art itself, you can’t really hold an NFT in your hand, either — it’s a one-of-a-kind piece of code, stored and protected on a shared public exchange. 

Continue reading “What is an NFT? The Trendy Blockchain Technology Explained”

Roughly 200 million people using Microsoft services already have made the jump past passwords

Microsoft Promises to Ease the Pains of Going Passwordless

source: cnet.com

Microsoft is updating its widely used cloud computing technology to make it easier for millions of us to dump our passwords.

The tech giant is making passwordless login a standard feature for Azure Active Directory, a cloud-based service customers can use to handle their employees’ login chores, the company said at its Ignite conference on Tuesday. The three-day conference, held online this year because of the COVID-19 pandemic, is geared for IT and other tech staff who use Microsoft’s products. Continue reading “Microsoft Promises to Ease the Pains of Going Passwordless”

No More Needles for Diagnostic Tests? Engineers Develop Nearly Pain-Free Microneedle Patch

source: scitechdaily.com

Nearly pain-free microneedle patch can test for antibodies and more in the fluid between cells.

Blood draws are no fun.

They hurt. Veins can burst, or even roll — like they’re trying to avoid the needle, too.

Oftentimes, doctors use blood samples to check for biomarkers of disease: antibodies that signal a viral or bacterial infection, such as SARS-CoV-2, the virus responsible for COVID-19, or cytokines indicative of inflammation seen in conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis and sepsis.

These biomarkers aren’t just in blood, though. They can also be found in the dense liquid medium that surrounds our cells, but in a low abundance that makes it difficult to be detected.

Until now.

Engineers at the McKelvey School of Engineering at Washington University in St. Louis have developed a microneedle patch that can be applied to the skin, capture a biomarker of interest and, thanks to its unprecedented sensitivity, allow clinicians to detect its presence.

The technology is low cost, easy for clinicians or patients themselves to use, and could eliminate the need for a trip to the hospital just for a blood draw.

Continue reading “No More Needles for Diagnostic Tests?”

SpaceX Will Launch Billionaire Jared Isaacman on a Private Spaceflight This Year

Isaacman chartered a Crew Dragon flight and is donating the other three seats.

 source:  space.com

SpaceX continues to blaze new paths to the final frontier.

Billionaire tech entrepreneur Jared Isaacman has chartered a trip to Earth orbit with Elon Musk’s company, which last year became the first private outfit to fly astronauts to the International Space Station.

The 37-year-old Isaacman, who’s also an accomplished pilot, will command the four-person “Inspiration4” mission aboard a SpaceX Crew Dragon capsule, he and SpaceX announced today (Feb. 1). There will be no professional astronauts aboard; Isaacman is donating the other three seats.

“It will be the first-ever all-private crewed orbital mission in history,” Musk said during a teleconference with reporters today (Feb. 1).

SpaceX will use the Crew Dragon spacecraft “Resilience” for Inspiration4, Musk added. Resilience is currently docked at the International Space Station on the Crew-1 mission, SpaceX’s first contracted crewed flight to the orbiting lab for NASA.

 

How to ‘Disappear’ on Happiness Avenue in Beijing

On a busy Monday afternoon in late October, a line of people in reflective vests stood on Happiness Avenue, in downtown Beijing.


Moving slowly and carefully along the pavement, some crouched, others tilted their heads towards the ground, as curious onlookers snapped photos.

It was a performance staged by the artist Deng Yufeng, who was trying to demonstrate how difficult it was to dodge CCTV cameras in the Chinese capital.

As governments and companies around the world boost their investments in security networks, hundreds of millions more surveillance cameras are expected to be installed in 2021 – and most of them will be in China, according to industry analysts IHS Markit.

By 2018, there were already about 200 million surveillance cameras in China.

And by 2021 this number is expected to reach 560 million, according to the Wall Street Journal, roughly one for every 2.4 citizens.

China says the cameras prevent crime.

And in 2018, the number of victims of intentional homicide per head of population in China was 10 times lower than in the US, according to the UN Office on Drugs and Crime.

But a growing number of Chinese citizens are questioning the effect on their privacy.

They also wonder what would happen if their personal data was compromised.

‘Recruited volunteers’

It is rare for Chinese citizens to stage protests against government surveillance.

And it is not without risk.

But creative types such as Deng are coming up with innovative ways to bring the issue out into the open.

Before the performance, he measured the length and width of Happiness Avenue with a ruler.

He then recorded the brands of the 89 CCTV cameras alongside it and mapped out their distributions and ranges.