technology

Dyson Airwrap is the $500 hair styler you can’t help but covet

Dyson Airwrap is the $500 hair styler you can’t help but covet

It isn't controversial to say that most of us associate Dyson with vacuums. Though vacuums make up the company's core business, Dyson has also branched out to hair care in recent years. Back in 2016, it launched its Supersonic hair dryer, and today it's following that up by introducing an intriguing new hair curler called the Airwave.

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BrainNet can have three brains “talk” to each other

BrainNet can have three brains “talk” to each other

We're probably still centuries away from the evolutionary leap that would awaken our latent psychic abilities, but scientists are tirelessly working on making use of the technology we do have now to make a fraction of science fiction a reality. Researchers from the University of Washington have been working on a brain-to-brain interface since for quite a few years now and they have just announced their new network, BrainNet, which could form the basis of a "social network" of connected brains.

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eBay tapped Apple’s iPhone AR tech for hands-free shopping

eBay tapped Apple’s iPhone AR tech for hands-free shopping

Today, eBay made an announcement most probably wouldn't expect: it's been working behind the scenes on AI-powered assistive technology. In a broad sense, the open-source HeadGaze project, as it's called, uses the front-facing camera on the iPhone X and 3D information from Apple ARKit to allow users to navigate apps by moving their head. eBay has also created an app called HeadSwipe using HeadGaze technology.

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Baraja’s LIDAR sets its sights on self-driving cars

Baraja’s LIDAR sets its sights on self-driving cars

Spectrum-Scan LIDAR startup Baraja wants to knock the silly hat from the top of autonomous cars. Emerging into the light after several years in stealth mode, the Australian company is promising a double whammy for self-driving vehicle manufacturers: better performance than current laser scanning systems, but in a more discreet and flexible package.

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This is Elon Musk’s submarine that will rescue Thai soccer team

This is Elon Musk’s submarine that will rescue Thai soccer team

There’s a tragic irony to the fact that while soccer (read: football) teams were competing over the 2018 World Cup in Russia, a Thai boys’ soccer team is fighting for their very lives. But as traditional and straightforward methods prove inadequate to rescue the children and their coach, Elon Musk is turning to technology to design a kid-size submarine that will help save the boys. Unsurprisingly, he’s borrowing a few things from SpaceX.

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Chinese “laser rifle” makes science fiction frighteningly real

Chinese “laser rifle” makes science fiction frighteningly real

Lasers, by their very nature, have the potential for harm but most of the dangerous applications of the technology has been limited to science fiction until recently. But while companies like Lockheed Martin are scrambling to weaponize lasers, their Chines counterparts may have just one-upped them. According to a recent report, a Chinese tech firm has successfully developed a laser rifle no heavier than an AK-47 but has the ability to pierce through glass and metal undetected and set clothes, and humans, on fire.

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Orlando drops Amazon Rekognition amid privacy outcry

Orlando drops Amazon Rekognition amid privacy outcry

It might be a small and probably temporary win for privacy advocates, but it’s a significant win nonetheless. The City of Orlando, Florida has announced that they will be ending the use of Amazon’s facial recognition software in response to protests staged by the ACLU and dozens of advocacy groups. While the government is still keeping the door open to using the technology again in the future, Orlando residents can rest assured that the frighteningly accurate Amazon Rekognition won’t scanning their faces again any time soon.

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Microsoft checkout-free system tipped to take on Amazon Go

Microsoft checkout-free system tipped to take on Amazon Go

Microsoft is developing its own automatic checkout technology similar to the kind used by Amazon Go stores, according to sources. With this, retailers can equip stores with a system that monitors what consumers put into their basket and automatically bills them for it, eliminating the need to go through traditional checkout lines. Walmart is reportedly interested in Microsoft's platform.

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Smart luggage-maker Raden unexpectedly shuts down: Goodbye warranty

Smart luggage-maker Raden unexpectedly shuts down: Goodbye warranty

Another smart luggage company has closed its doors, with startup Raden blaming the change in battery policies for air travel for the decision to shut up shop. The news makes Raden the second bag-maker to cease operations this month, each citing the tougher rules applied by airlines last December.

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Wikipedia will be printed on tiny metal plates and sent to the moon

Wikipedia will be printed on tiny metal plates and sent to the moon

A non-profit called Arch Foundation is hoping to send millions of Wikipedia pages to the moon, only with a twist: they'll be "written" on small metal plates. The pages will be sourced from the English version of Wikipedia, and assuming everything goes according to plan, the content will be on the lunar surface within the next couple years. The total archive size will be similar to a CD.

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Inexpensive touch-sensitive paper instantly digitizes written notes

Inexpensive touch-sensitive paper instantly digitizes written notes

Researchers have introduced a new touch-sensitive paper that can track input and automatically digitize it. The system involves conductive film and a carbon-loaded paint applied to paper, among other things. The end result is a type of paper that detects touches from both fingers and writing instruments, transforming the process of digitizing handwritten content.

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HD Vinyl coming next year to capitalize on nostalgia

HD Vinyl coming next year to capitalize on nostalgia

Who said you can't teach an old dog new tricks or old media new features. Austrian startup Rebeat is certainly trying to prove it isn't the case. Making use of European patent filed way back in 2016 and a $4.8 billion investment, the small company is starting to turn the gears to produce what it labels as "High Definition Vinyl". Why? Because sales of physical media such as CDs and vinyl, for the first time in 7 years, just eclipsed digital sales.

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