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Virgin Space Plane

VSS Unity returning from its feather test flight
VSS Unity returning from its feather test flight (Credit: Virgin Galactic)

Virgin Galactic’s VSS Unity suborbital spacecraft took to the skies over the Mojave desert in an unpowered flight test of the ship’s feather re-entry system. Piloted by Mark Stucky and Mike Masucci, the glide test is the fourth independent flight and the eighth total flight of the craft, which is designed to carry paying passengers on brief excursions to the edge of space. read more

Knightscope Security Robot

At just 5ft, they may not seem like the most imposing security guards, but they could soon be patrolling shopping centers around the world.

The Knightscope K5 robots are the creation of a Silicon Valley startup firm and have been specially designed for fighting crime.

And the company says it has just signed a deal which will see the droids roll out across 16 cities.

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Knightscope has just signed a deal which will see its K5 security droids (pictured) roll out to shopping malls across 16 cities in the United States. And they could one day become a common sight in shopping precincts worldwide
Knightscope has just signed a deal which will see its K5 security droids (pictured) roll out to shopping malls across 16 cities in the United States. And they could one day become a common sight in shopping precincts worldwide

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Electric Flyer

The Kitty Hawk Flyer being flown by Cimeron Morrissey in the company's slick promo video
The Kitty Hawk Flyer being flown by Cimeron Morrissey in the company’s slick promo video (Credit: Kitty Hawk)

Silicon Valley startup Kitty Hawk – backed by Google’s Larry Page, who also threw his weight behind a rotor-based flying car a few years back – has released a video showing off the prototype of an upcoming all-electric personal flying machine it’s calling The Flyer. The company says that users won’t need to secure a pilot’s license to fly the eight rotor vehicle, and promises a swift learning curve. read more

Industrial Iron Man Arm

Lockheed Martin is giving industrial workers a hand with an Iron Man inspired tool.

Called FORTIS Tool Arm, the exoskeleton is capable of supporting up to 50 pounds in order to relieve fatigue for those who work with heavy machinery.

Users reported two-thirds less fatigue after using the tool, which resulted in higher quality work, greater productivity and fewer musculoskeletal injuries.

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FORTIS Tool Arm is capable of supporting up to 50 pounds in order to relieve fatigue for those who work with heavy machinery. Users reported two-thirds less fatigue after using the tool, which resulted in higher quality work, greater productivity and fewer musculoskeletal injuries
FORTIS Tool Arm is capable of supporting up to 50 pounds in order to relieve fatigue for those who work with heavy machinery. Users reported two-thirds less fatigue after using the tool, which resulted in higher quality work, greater productivity and fewer musculoskeletal injuries

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No More Flat Tires

Getting a puncture is a frustrating experience for any bike rider, but it could soon become a thing of the past.

A new set of plastic tires could consign bike pumps and repair kits to the history books.

The unique design does away with the air-filled inner tube of conventional tires, in favor of rigid plastic spokes that support the weight of the bike and its rider.

A new set of airless plastic tyres could soon consign bike pumps and repair kits to the history books, by eliminating punctures
A new set of airless plastic tires could soon consign bike pumps and repair kits to the history books, by eliminating punctures

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Wristband Diagnoses Disease

An ultra-sensitive wristband may improve diagnosis and treatment of cystic fibrosis, diabetes and other conditions, researchers said on Monday.

Unlike previous sweat sensors, the new model requires only a trace of moisture to do its job and doesn’t require patients to sit still for 30 minutes while it collects a sample.

The device contains flexible sensors and microprocessors that stick to the skin and stimulate sweat glands.

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Researchers at the University of California have designed a wearable device that contains flexible sensors and microprocessors that stick to the skin and stimulate sweat glands
Researchers at the University of California have designed a wearable device that contains flexible sensors and microprocessors that stick to the skin and stimulate sweat glands

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Mind Reading Device

A device that reads people’s minds through their brainwaves has been created by scientists.

It could lead to an ‘easily-operated’ machine that links up to smartphones in the next five years, the researchers said.

The breakthrough could one-day help handicapped people who struggle to speak to communicate again, such as those who have suffered a stroke.

It could be used as a ‘telepathic typewriter’ that automatically notes down what we are thinking.

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A device that reads people's minds through their brainwaves has been created by scientists. It could lead to an 'easily-operated' machine that links up to smartphones in the next five years. This image shows the collection of 'EEG' brainwave data by the researchers during their study
A device that reads people’s minds through their brainwaves has been created by scientists. It could lead to an ‘easily-operated’ machine that links up to smartphones in the next five years. This image shows the collection of ‘EEG’ brainwave data by the researchers during their study

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The Robots are Coming – and Sooner Than We Think

by: the Common Constitutionalist

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Remember the “Fight for 15,” the big progressive plan to raise the minimum wage to the arbitrarily chosen hourly base of 15 dollars? And recall that we free-market conservatives have been arguing that a mandated wage hike will not end well?

Already, the hike has taken a toll on some cities. Local and State minimum wage hikes are forcing restaurants and like service industry employers to raise their prices and/or lay off staff. Other businesses are closing up and relocating outside of cities to avoid the mandated pay hike.

Governments – federal, state and local, bowing to the pressure of a tiny minority of radicals, know not what they do.

Governments and radical activists create static charts and models showing how a massive minimum wage hike will benefit “the workers.” They never consider how the mandates will affect the employers – nor do they seem to care. They don’t understand that the private sector cannot just vote themselves more money to pay for the wage hike and further crushing regulations.

So instead of subserviently complying with government overlords, companies of all kinds are seeking to find ways around these crushing big brother decrees. And just like everything else in life – leave it to private sector innovators to find a path around Nanny State mandates. read more

Think Fingerprint Scanners are Safe – Think Again

Many of us rely on using our fingerprints to unlock our phones and pay for shopping.

But smartphone fingerprint scanners may not be secure as we think.

Researchers have developed a series of ‘MasterPrints’ made from the common features of human finger markings which they say can unlock any smartphone.

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Sample fingerprints that researchers compared against an artificial MasterPrint. Solid black squares around a print show when the MasterPrint 'matched' with a real fingerprint
Sample fingerprints that researchers compared against an artificial MasterPrint. Solid black squares around a print show when the MasterPrint ‘matched’ with a real fingerprint

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