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TED 2013: 4D printed objects 'make themselves'

TED 2013: 4D printed objects 'make themselves'
28 February 2013Last updated at 05:39 ET By Jane Wakefield Technology reporter Video of cube self-folding strand courtesy Self-Assembly Lab, MIT/Stratasys Many are only just getting their heads around the idea of 3D printing but scientists at MIT are already working on an upgrade: 4D printing. At the TED conference in Los Angeles, architect and computer scientist Skylar Tibbits showed how the process allows objects to self-assemble. It could be used to install objects in hard-to-reach places such as underground water pipes, he suggested. It might also herald an age of self-assembling furniture, said experts. Smart materials TED fellow Mr Tibbits, from the MIT's (Massachusetts Institute of Technology) self-assembly lab, explained what the extra dimension involved. "We're proposing that the fourth dimension is time and that over time static objects will transform and adapt," he told the BBC. The process uses a specialised 3D printer made by Stratasys that can create multi-layered materials.

When are we going to learn to trust robots? 4 March 2013Last updated at 19:19 ET By William Kremer BBC World Service A new robot unveiled this week highlights the psychological and technical challenges of designing a humanoid that people actually want to have around. Like all little boys, Roboy likes to show off. He can say a few words. He can shake hands and wave. He is learning to ride a tricycle. But when Roboy is unveiled this Saturday at the Robots on Tour event in Zurich, he will be hoping to charm the crowd as well as wow them with his skills. "One of the goals is for Roboy to be a messenger of a new generation of robots that will interact with humans in a friendly way," says Rolf Pfeifer from the University of Zurich - Roboy's parent-in-chief. As manufacturers get ready to market robots for the home it has become essential for them to overcome the public's suspicion of them. Continue reading the main story The uncanny valley: three theories Mori called this sudden dip in human beings' comfort levels the "uncanny valley". Asimo

Utility fog Visualization of foglet with arms retracted and extended Diagram of a 100-micrometer foglet Utility fog (coined by Dr. John Storrs Hall in 1993[1]) is a hypothetical collection of tiny robots that can replicate a physical structure.[2][3][4][5] As such, it is a form of self-reconfiguring modular robotics. Conception[edit] Hall thought of it as a nanotechnological replacement for car seatbelts. In the original application as a replacement for seatbelts, the swarm of robots would be widely spread-out, and the arms loose, allowing air flow between them. Hall and his correspondents soon realised that utility fog could be manufactured en masse to occupy the entire atmosphere of a planet and replace any physical instrumentality necessary to human life. See also[edit] References[edit] External links[edit] Utility Fog at Nanotech Now, many links.

The Future of Gaming — It May All Be in Your Head Gaming as a hobby evokes images of lethargic teenagers huddled over their controllers, submerged in their couch surrounded by candy bar wrappers. This image should soon hit the reset button since a more exciting version of gaming is coming. It’s called neurogaming, and it’s riding on the heels of some exponential technologies that are converging on each other. Many of these were on display recently in San Francisco at the NeuroGaming Conference and Expo; a first-of-its-kind conference whose existence alone signals an inflection point in the industry. Conference founder, Zack Lynch, summarized neurogaming to those of us in attendance as the interface, “where the mind and body meet to play games.” Driven by explosive growth in computer processing, affordable sensors, and new haptic sensation technology, neurogame designers have entirely new toolkits to craft an immersive experience that simulates our waking life. Here’s a video of the tech in action: Imagine if gaming looked like this :

Metamaterials remove heat and control its flow and direction Factal Antenna Systems has filed patent on better methods for removing heat, and controlling its flow and direction. The technology uses tiny resonators made of self-scaled structures called fractals to form a virtual bridge to lead heat, or other electromagnetic radiation forms, controlling flow from one area to another. The resulting ‘heat transfer’ happens at the speed of light and can be superior to other methods such as convection, conduction, or ambient radiation loss. CEO and inventor Nathan Cohen says “Our initiative to exploit fundamental technology on fractal metamaterials is bearing bountiful fruit, such as the world’s first and best invisibility cloak (US patent 8,253,639) , and now ‘metatransfer’ cooling.” Cohen is an astrophysicist with decades of experience in radio astronomy, optics, radar/ultrasound, and infrared. He is considered one of the world’s experts in applications of fractals. Cohen expects the technology to see wide use in the next two decades.

Random Rights Are Bad Food truck and fast food meals can be pretty skimpy. So wouldn’t it be great if we passed a diner’s bill of rights law, requiring all prepared food to come with free unlimited drinks, a fast human waiter, cloth napkins and tablecloths, and a seat by a window? Well no, that wouldn’t be great. All those food trucks and fast food places would go out of business, leaving diners only with the option to eat at expensive fancy restaurants. It might feel good to play Santa for free, handing out stuff that costs you little yet appears to benefit others lots. But something-for-nothings are usually illusions. Yes, sometimes we can benefit strategically from having our options limited, but such situations are rare. George Dvorsky says we should give lots of rights to ems: Back in 2010, … I proposed that the following rights be afforded to fully conscious human and human-like emulations: … I’d like to include Sandberg’s idea of time-rate rights.

Evacuated Tube Transport By ET3: LA to NY in 45 Minutes Evacuated Tube Transport also known as Hyperloop transportation uses airless vacuum tubes system with a magnetic levitation system similar to high-speed bullet trains. Each tube will carry individual capsules systems that will fit up to six people per capsule. Theoretically the system could travel at speeds up to 4000 miles per hour. Passengers could travel from LA to NY in an astonishing 45 minutes and NY to China in just under 2 hours. This may sound like a far-future project but a colorado-based company called ET3 is working on a 3 mile prototype that should be ready by the end of 2013. This technology is not a new idea. Another company looking to innovate the transportation industry is Terraspan. It is clear that we need faster, safer, cleaner forms of transportation. Elon Musk will reveal his Hyperloop concept tomorrow! Get your Serious Wonder Membership now. Image: ET3 Share it now!

Wearable Technology: Bend it, Wash it, Wear it At the 2013 Wearable Technology Conference in San Francisco, Google Glass is already old news. That may seem surprising since most people have never tried one on yet. However, to the hundreds of engineers and executives that crowded Fort Mason’s conference center this week, the question on everyone’s mind was: What’s really new? The answers are exciting: Jackets that talk to each other and let you know if your date is too cold or too hot. Wearable technology—clothing and accessories that incorporate computers and electronics in them—is an industry literally about to explode. That is all going to change in the next decade. All this transformative wearable technology is made possible because of the massive shrinkage of computer chips and electronics that has taken place in the last two decades. In my visionary science-fiction novel, The Transhumanist Wager, protagonist Jethro Knights wears a shirt capable of monitoring key vital signs of his body. “We have a fix for that,” says Joan K.

Hype Builds Before Elon Musk’s August Alpha Plan for SF to LA Hyperloop I liked going to the bank drive-through with my mom as a kid. She’d send her checks to the teller inside by shooting a cylinder through a pneumatic tube. I always wanted a ride in that thing. And while there remains a woeful shortage of pneumatic tubes transporting people at the moment—that unhappy state of affairs may not last forever. Elon Musk, the billionaire tech mogul behind PayPal, Tesla Motors, and SpaceX and the entrepreneur who wants to colonize Mars with a vertically landing, reusable rocket—that guy—recently announced he’s been busy thinking about building a pneumatic tube to shuttle people from SF to LA at 600+ mph. When asked to describe the Hyperloop at D11, Musk told the audience that if the Concorde had a three-way with a railgun and an air hockey table—the Hyperloop would be their baby. Musk says he came up with the idea when contemplating California’s high-speed rail project between San Francisco and Los Angeles. For the record, this is not, in general, a new idea.

Non-invasive brain to brain communication to allow a human to mentally control movement of a rats tail Harvard researchers have created the first noninvasive brain-to-brain interface (BBI) between a human and a rat. The interface allows the human to control the rat’s tail. This is computer mediated telepathy and remote control of another body from someone elses brain. The human BCI has an accuracy of 94%, and that it generally takes around 1.5 seconds for the entire process — from the human deciding to look at the screen, through to the movement of the rat’s tail. More accurate brain mapping is needed to achieve more precise and complex control Transcranial focused ultrasound (FUS) is capable of modulating the neural activity of specific brain regions, with a potential role as a non-invasive computer-to-brain interface (CBI). Brain-to-computer interface (BCI) refers to the hardware and software environment that detects and translates brain activity to control computers or stored-program architecture devices without involving muscles or the peripheral nervous system.

Is that you, HAL? No, it's NEIL: Google, US Navy pour money into 'associative' AI brain NEIL hasn't slept or eaten in four months, it's just browsed the internet and tried to figure out connections between aircraft and aircraft carriers, or hot dogs and buns. The Never Ending Image Learner is a new approach to weak artificial intelligence systems that piggybacks on the immense tech fielded by companies like Google, and represents the bleeding edge of computer science research. The system takes in batches of classified images (cars parked outside, for instance), and then tries to find other classified elements within them (such as the surrounding road), then crunches the data and forms associations. So far it has sucked in three million images, and managed to identity 1,500 objects and 1,200 scenes in half a million pictures, then figured out some 2,500 associations from this. "It's building upon a lot of work in computer vision using deformable part models," Carnegie Mellon University assistant research professor Abhinav Gupta, told The Reg on Monday.

Proposed Satellite Would Beam Solar Power to Earth PASADENA, Calif. — An energy-hungry Earth is in need of transformational and sustainable energy solutions, experts say. For decades, researchers have been appraising the use of power-beaming solar-power satellites. But the projected cost, complexity and energy economics of the notion seemingly short-circuited the idea. Now, a unique new approach has entered the scene, dubbed SPS-ALPHA, short for Solar Power Satellite via Arbitrarily Large PHased Array. Mankins provided a detailed overview of the power-beaming concept here during the 2012 NASA Innovative Advanced Concepts meeting March 27-29. The NIAC is under the wing of NASA's Office of the Chief Technologist, which is providing a technology and innovation focus for the space agency. Huge platforms Last August, Artemis Innovation Management Solutions was selected for a NASA NIAC award to dive into the details of what Mankins labels "the first practical solar-power satellite concept." Megawatts of power Mass production

A smart-object recognition algorithm that doesn’t need humans (Credit: BYU Photo) BYU engineer Dah-Jye Lee has created an algorithm that can accurately identify objects in images or video sequences — without human calibration. “In most cases, people are in charge of deciding what features to focus on and they then write the algorithm based off that,” said Lee, a professor of electrical and computer engineering. “With our algorithm, we give it a set of images and let the computer decide which features are important.” Humans need not apply Not only is Lee’s genetic algorithm able to set its own parameters, but it also doesn’t need to be reset each time a new object is to be recognized — it learns them on its own. Lee likens the idea to teaching a child the difference between dogs and cats. Comparison with other object-recognition algorithms In a study published in the December issue of academic journal Pattern Recognition, Lee and his students demonstrate both the independent ability and accuracy of their “ECO features” genetic algorithm.

Qualcomm’s Neuromorphic Chips Could Make Robots and Phones More Astute About the World Breakthrough An alternative design for computer chips that will enhance ­artificial intelligence. Why It Matters Traditional chips are reaching fundamental performance limits. Key Players Qualcomm IBM HRL Laboratories Human Brain Project A pug-size robot named pioneer slowly rolls up to the Captain America action figure on the carpet. This demonstration at Qualcomm’s headquarters in San Diego looks modest, but it’s a glimpse of the future of computing. Later this year, Qualcomm will begin to reveal how the technology can be embedded into the silicon chips that power every manner of electronic device. Qualcomm’s chips won’t become available until next year at the earliest; the company will spend 2014 signing up researchers to try out the technology. Today’s computers all use the so-called von Neumann architecture, which shuttles data back and forth between a central processor and memory chips in linear sequences of calculations. Neural Channel Cognitive Companion —Robert D.