California Academy of Sciences As much as we focus on the natural world, at Science Today we also love biomimicry and bio-inspired technology! Here is a roundup of the latest. Biomimicry is the study of living organisms in order to better inform efficient design principles in engineering, medical devices, architecture, and other fields of human innovation. Life on Earth as we know it has evolved over an estimated 3.8 billion years, and many researchers consider this cumulative “information base” of form, function, and process to complement and even exceed many of our current best practices. Biomimicry may be a newer word, but the concept itself is an old one. From Leonardo Da Vinci’s flying machines to Japan’s Shinkansen train, we have often looked to nature and wondered how things function the way they do.
Police in North Carolina Patrol in a Corvette The nonpolice version of the Corvette Z06. Speeders in Wake County, N.C., will have to go pretty fast if they want to outrun the police department’s latest interceptor — a Chevrolet Corvette Z06. The Wake County police recently seized the Corvette from a drug dealer, said David Cooke, the county manager, according to the News & Observer. The car is being used to patrol Interstate 40. The county sheriff, Donnie Harrison, however, was apparently less forthcoming with the local paper. “You’re not going to force me to talk about anything, you understand?”
3-D Printer Guns Get US Approval WASHINGTON, March 19 (RIA Novosti) - A Texas firm aiming to manufacture guns using a 3-D printer – and publicly share the online files with anyone who wants to do the same – has been issued a license to build and sell 3-D weapons from the US Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms (ATF). “The whole idea is a printable firearm that can be downloaded online for free,” said Cody Wilson, a law school student and founder of Defense Distributed, the newly-licensed Austin, Texas company that also promotes 3-D gun making, in an interview with RIA Novosti. “One day it will be possible, when pretty much everybody has a 3-D printer, for anyone to download a free file and print out a gun, anywhere in the world. And your government would have nothing to say about it,” he said.
Nendo adapts Japanese paper-making to make Semi-Wrinkle Washi lamps Japanese designers Nendo have adapted a traditional Japanese paper-making technique to create a series of lamps that are smooth at one end and gently wrinkled at the other. Nendo called the collection Semi-Wrinkle Washi, with "washi" being the name for Japanese paper made from plant fibres. "Washi is made by passing fine screens through a bath of plant pulp and water to collect the pulp, then by drying the screens and peeling off the new paper sheets," said the designers. To create the lamps they collaborated with Taniguchi Aoya Washi, a company in the Tottori Prefecture in western Japan which is famous for creating three-dimensional objects using the same technique. "Rather than pasting sheets of washi together to create forms, the company uses the same process to create beautiful seamless forms that are three-dimensional from the start," Nendo said.
Programmable Matter: Claytronics or Gershenfeld We still tell our children “you can be anything when you grow up.” It’s time to start telling them “you’re going to be able to make anything…right now.” Similar work at MIT and Carnegie Mellon is pointing towards the next revolution in computers and manufacturing: programmable matter. In the future you won’t use computers to design a car, the car will form from billions of tiny computers that arrange themselves into anything you want. The physical and computational world will merge. Biomimicry-UK Festival of the Future City As part of the Festival of the Future City, we are hosting a panel session on the topic of ‘Biomimicry and Future Cities’. The debate with Professor Sue Thomas (Technobiophilia: Nature and Cyberspace) Professor Peter Head (Founder and CEO, The Ecological...
Egocide and suicide | The Psychology of Me Lately, I’ve been thinking about egocide. (Why does my autocorrect want to change that to “geocode”??) I’m at the end of my rope and climbing back up is not an option. I’ve got to change. The Grizzly: First Fully 3D Printed Rifle Gets a Shot Off This is an update to the ongoing progress with 3D printed weapons. Activist Post The eyes of the world are on the innovation of 3D printing.
Cubify launches 3D printed shoes you can print overnight News: designer Janne Kyttanen has created a range of 3D-printed shoes for women that can be made at home overnight to be worn the next day. Kyttanen, creative director at printing giant 3D Systems, has created four different styles of wedge shoes that can be made using 3D Systems' CubeX printer. Consumers can download the free digital files for the shoes, select the size they require and print them in a colour of their choice. The project is intended to attract new audiences to 3D printing, which has tended to be dominated by products aimed at men.