So before you pop it in the portable microwave, be sure to pull out your trusty "SensorFresh Q," which Red Ferret describes as an "electronic nose that sniffs out bacteria in uncooked meat." That's fine, but what we really want to know is whether it works on leftover pizza.
What's good news and terrible news? Hopeful and horrendous? Economic growth, of course. A study of global air pollution done in Texas--where I'm told Houston leads the American league in polluting air--shows the economic boom in India and China adding to atmospheric pollution.
That's not all, says the team at Texas A&M. That pollution is affecting the storm track moving west to east across the Pacific and bringing weather to much of North America. From North America, that pollution continues to circle the globe.
One conclusion: "During the past few decades, there has been … Read more
There are a number of technologies on the market aimed at keeping us from falling asleep, especially while behind the wheel, but they usually involve some kind of device affixed to the noggin. Researchers in Japan, however, are working on a protype car seat that senses when you're about to nod off by monitoring pulse, respiration and other physical changes that typically occur 10 minutes before someone falls asleep, according to Pink Tentacle.
Sensors are embedded throughout the seat to detect those changes and, eventually, some kind of alarm system will be included to kick in when Mr. Sandman … Read more
There's more to fungus than even your sophisticated palate could discern. There's xylose metabolism, even potential wealth.
Xylose is sugar found in hardwoods and agricultural leftovers. U.S. government genetics researchers and forestry experts are working on getting a fungus known as Pichia stipitis to reveal the secret of how it turns the abundant xylose in wood fiber, grass clippings or paper into ethanol. That in turn is a potentially popular alternative fuel to replace petroleum derivatives from diesel to kerosene to gasoline.
Currently Pichia stipitis is found primarily in the guts of insects, like termites, that ingest … Read more
Canadian researchers predict that climate change will be good for trees, but bad for tundra. They've studied tree lines--the upper limit of arboreal growth on mountains--over the past 300 years in the Yukon, and the trees are getting the better end of the deal.
During the 20th century, the tree line moved upslope by as much as 250 feet in elevation. That bodes poorly for tundra plants and for animals like caribou and bighorn sheep that eat them.
We generally try very hard not to think about exercise equipment when not at the gym (or even when we are at the gym, actually). But this is one fitness item that may be impossible for us to ignore.
If you've ever wondered what, exactly, your workout routine was doing for specific parts of your body, this intelligent scale from Tanita might interest you too. Far more than just indicate poundage, the new BC-545 model delivers "individual body composition readings for five body segments (each arm, each leg and the trunk area)," according to Gizmag. To get … Read more
NASA said Friday that it has awarded 4.75 million hours of supercomputing time to U.S. scientists this year. As part of NASA's National Leadership Computing System (NLCS) initiative, researchers will have access to the space agency's Columbia system--one of the world's largest supercomputers located at the Ames Research Center in Silicon Valley. The donated time is meant to help scientists crack some of the harder, more computationally intensive problems, involving turbulent fluid flow, naval ship design, combustion for power generation and ocean convection, according to NASA.
"These significant allocations of time on Columbia will … Read more
Crave has seen some bizarre health and fitness equipment, but this may deserve a category all its own. The Korean-made "Photo Sauna Cauterizer" (cauterizer?) emits a laser with a "low level of radiation" for what its manufacturer claims are a variety of health benefits. An understandably skeptical Red Ferret says the claims involve "some kind of oxygen rejuvenation." Call us chicken, but anything that mentions cauterization and radiation in the same sentence isn't something we want strapped anywhere near our waistlines, or anyplace else on our bodies.
A new imaging system promises to pinpoint the location of a weapon concealed on a person without using a metal detector, a pat-down or the slightest dose of radiation, all thanks to some heavenly technology.
The BIS-WDS Prime combines "millimeter wave sensor" technology, video cameras and algorithm software to detect "objects made of metal, plastic, ceramic and composite hidden beneath a subject's clothing" from up to 45 feet away, according to manufacturer Brijot Imaging Systems. The subject doesn't have to stand still or even know he's being scanned.
The technology, which is used … Read more
We used to joke that Japan was hurtling toward a human-free society, but now we're starting to worry that it's true. The island nation, already concerned about its rapidly declining population (of humans), has recently debuted bots that can clean buildings, plow snow, detect smoke and even police grounds while others escort hospital patients and take their temperatures.
But now robots are entering the ultimate inner sanctum: the kitchen. BornRich says a team of more than 40 Japanese researchers spent four years creating a domestic bot that can, among other things, wash dishes. (Maybe it's not such … Read more