future tech

SlashGear Science Week In Review

SlashGear Science Week In Review

Welcome to the first SlashGear Science Week In Review. Each Saturday, we will round up our favorite science stories of the week for your perusal. Some are stories that we covered, others we didn't get to. A sample of this week's stories: A new form of matter, a hexacopter with superpowers, a robotic cloud, a supercool brown dwarf star, playing music using only your mind, and our ancestors on Mars. Think we missed something? Let us know in the comments!

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Researchers create new batteries with crazy fast recharge speed

Researchers create new batteries with crazy fast recharge speed

I have long said that one of the keys to making our gadgets more usable and vehicles that use batteries like EVs and plug-in hybrids more interesting to buyers is not only a battery with a higher capacity for energy storage, but also a battery that can be recharged quickly. That Nissan Leaf might not drive but 50 miles on a charge, but if I can recharge that car in only a few minutes suddenly that range is a lot more livable.

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Corning – A Day Made of Glass

Corning – A Day Made of Glass

Gorilla Glass is a common component in today's smartphones and tablets. If you have an iPhone 4 or one of Samsung's Galaxy S you're already enjoying the benefits of Corning's scratch and impact resistant glass. Corning has been working in glass and ceramics materials since 1851. They recently released this short video showcasing dozens of conceptual future uses for various types of electronically integrated glass panels. Corning's vision for the future of these multifunction panels features everything from hand-held touch reactive displays (modeled after the iPhone) to built in architectural display panels in everything from the bathroom mirror to kitchen counters to the entire dash of your car.

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Navy Proposal: Build “Coordinated Micro Robot Swarm”

Navy Proposal: Build “Coordinated Micro Robot Swarm”

The Navy has issued a proposal asking for someone out there to build it “a coordinated and distributed swarm of micro-robots” that can manufacture “novel materials and structures.” So these would be robots that can work together to build things, presumably even other robots. The Navy intends for the robot swarm (and yes, that is an actual quote from the proposal) to use desktop manufacturing, which allows you to "print" 3-D objects with equipment you can fit on your desk and program with your laptop.

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Shoei’s Optical/Resistive Touch Panel on Display Automotive Electronics Technology Expo

Shoei’s Optical/Resistive Touch Panel on Display Automotive Electronics Technology Expo

As the outside of our vehicles get more advanced, the inside is advancing at a far quicker pace. And while having the word "resistive" in any type of touchscreen implementation may not seem all that advanced to anyone, Shoei has created a hybrid touch panel that actually uses resistive technology in a useful fashion. Of course, it helps that the company doesn't have any intention of implementing their idea in an actual display.

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The Greatest 17 Seconds You’ll Ever Star Wars in the Snow

The Greatest 17 Seconds You’ll Ever Star Wars in the Snow

I was really pumped up to find this particular video posted right up at the top of the official Star Wars blog (and yes, I am the only fellow on our whole crew who has such a feed in my reader,) right up there at the top, was a post called Minnesota Trench Run. I live in Minnesota, and this winter has been miraculously snowy, so it was a fabulously warm and fuzzy moment finding this clip. One guy, Mike Nelson, filmed the clip, and another guy, FX artist Aaron Dabelow added the X-Wing.

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GPS Backpack for Dogs Created by Auburn University’s Canine Detection Research Institute

GPS Backpack for Dogs Created by Auburn University’s Canine Detection Research Institute

While robots are taking a major role in today's military scheme of things, there are always other options. Namely, animals. Simply put, a dog can get into places that a robot can't, and given the right method of controlling them, can be a lot more help than, say, a limited machine. That's where this backpack design comes into play. Designed within the walls of Auburn University's Canine Detection Research Institute, it's a backpack that puts a lot of features into a small space, all in the hopes of being able to guide a dog into a situation remotely.

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Doctors in Germany Create Swallowable, Remote-Controlled Stomach Submarine

Doctors in Germany Create Swallowable, Remote-Controlled Stomach Submarine

Right now, doctors only have a couple of choices when it comes to looking into the human body. Trying to discover a person's ailment in their intestines is tough, as it usually means that an endoscopy has to happen. Inputting a camera, connected to a long cable, down someone's throat isn't always what a patient is looking forward to, and the alternative isn't any better. And while capsules with cameras in them exist today, it's hard for doctors to see what's happening inside, as the movement is controlled by the person's innards. But, doctor's from Germany are looking to change that with a new remote-controlled capsule that can be swallowed.

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Road Train Technology Undergoes First Real World Testing, Proves Successful

Road Train Technology Undergoes First Real World Testing, Proves Successful

Volvo has recently tested new technology that will allow for cars to automatically sync up with a lead driver, and be part of an semi-autonomous convoy. Titled "road train technology," it's designed to allow drivers to sync up with a lead vehicle, and allow their car to take over for the most part. The tests were conducted on Volvo's test tracks in Sweden, and the company (and testers) have officially labeled the first real world tests as a success.

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