technology

Kroger’s mobile scanning tech will cut checkout lines in 2018

Kroger’s mobile scanning tech will cut checkout lines in 2018

Kroger plans to expand use of technology that enables customers to scan products as they're put into the shopping cart, eliminating the need to stand in traditional checkout lines. Though the Scan, Bag, Go system isn't new, Kroger has revealed that it will be expanding it to 400 stores next year, a move perhaps spurred by Amazon Go and Walmart's own rumored alternative.

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Energous WattUp over the air charging gets FCC nod

Energous WattUp over the air charging gets FCC nod

Fumbling for charging cables and even charging pads could soon become a thing of the past. That is if Energous will be able to take advantage of the door that has just been opened for it. The company’s WattUp Mid Field Transmitter has just gotten the approval of the Federal Communications Commission, making it the first “power-at-a-distance” wireless charging tech to get the green light. Should actual commercial products get created from this tech, it could mean we’d be charging devices from as far as three feet away from the charger.

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Audi workers are testing exoskeletons to reduce strain on assembly line

Audi workers are testing exoskeletons to reduce strain on assembly line

Audi has rolled out a cool bit of tech for the people working some of its assembly lines. The tech is an exoskeleton that is designed to be a lifting aid worn on the body. The entire exoskeleton weighs about three kilograms. The device is a metal frame with elements on the upper and lower body as well as back and thighs that are connected with a support structure.

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White House calls 5G network rollout a national security priority

White House calls 5G network rollout a national security priority

The White House has listed 5G network rollout as a national security priority in the US. The detail comes from the newly released National Security Strategy Report for December 2017, specifically from "Pillar II: Promote American Prosperity." In a section called "Improved American Infrastructure" found on page 19, the White House says that 5G Internet will be deployed across the nation in order to "improve America's digital infrastructure."

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Self-healing glass could make cracked phone screens just a memory

Self-healing glass could make cracked phone screens just a memory

Smartphones are very fragile devices, especially with the shift to glass-metal-glass sandwiches. Fortunately, parts can be replaced or repaired, but at some cost. One of the most expensive components is the screen, which usually comes with glass fused on top of the actual display panel. Glass might not scratch but it does shatter and crack. This glass from the University of Tokyo does as well, but it also does one thing that no other glass can. It can repair those cracks, at room temperature, and with just a small amount of pressure applied.

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Lockheed Martin, Aerion will build the first ever supersonic business jet

Lockheed Martin, Aerion will build the first ever supersonic business jet

Lockheed Martin and Aerion have teamed up to build the world's first supersonic business jet. The two companies announced a Memorandum of Understanding late last week, explaining that they will go on to "define a formal and gated process to explore the feasibility" of creating a supersonic business jet dubbed the Aerion AS2. Kicking off that process will be a 12-month period during which the duo will create a framework for the overall project.

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UCLA researchers create device that could revolutionize hydrogen vehicles

UCLA researchers create device that could revolutionize hydrogen vehicles

Researchers from UCLA have designed a new type of device that is able to use solar power to create and store energy. The device efficiently creates and stores energy and could be used to power electronics like smartphones and create hydrogen fuel for cars.

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2018 MacBook, Apple Watch to free up more space inside, says Kuo

2018 MacBook, Apple Watch to free up more space inside, says Kuo

There is only so much you can cram inside an electronics device. Aside from concerns about heat management, manufacturers are often limited by the size of the components they use. It’s like a jigsaw puzzle where you try to fit as many components as you can in the most efficient arrangement possible. There are two ways around this problem. The most common is to shrink, or even remove, components to make room for more. The other is to use more or less flexible components, which is what Apple will be doing for next year’s line of MacBooks and Apple Watches, or so says the famed Ming-chi Kuo.

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NASA reinvents the wheel

NASA reinvents the wheel

Next time someone chides you for wasting your time reinventing the wheel, tell them that the smart folks at NASA did it too. Of course, they didn’t as much as reinvent the wheel as they made a new kind of wheel. The space agency, of course, has been toying with all sorts of new wheels that would let its machines and future human explorers safely and comfortably, as much as they can, across the moon, Mars, and beyond. And NASA might have finally found an answer in the form of a deforming and compliant tire made of springs memory alloy springs.

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Apple augmented reality headset is finally getting serious

Apple augmented reality headset is finally getting serious

A lot of companies think that AR and VR are the technologies of the future, and now Apple has been prompted to ramp up the development on an AR headset of its own. Though we may not see the headset for another couple of years, Apple is said to be pouring resources into its development. This is part of a larger AR initiative which was kicked off by the development and the release of Apple's ARKit.

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Lockheed Martin contract will make sci-fi aerial laser fights a reality

Lockheed Martin contract will make sci-fi aerial laser fights a reality

Defense contractor Lockheed Martin is probably known for a lot of things, but it is probably most famous for how it has turned weaponized lasers into more than just a science fiction prop. Demonstrations of its power including being able to stop a moving truck dead in its tracks by blasting out its engines. Now Lockheed Martin is taking that same firepower to the skies. The US Air Force Research Lab has just awarded it a contract to develop a high-power fiber laser system that will be fitted on a tactical fighter jet in 4 years’ time.

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LED road surface aims to detect pedestrians and warn of road hazards

LED road surface aims to detect pedestrians and warn of road hazards

A new type of road surface with LED lights embedded has been created with the goal of helping to detect pedestrians and warning drivers and bicyclists of road hazards. The new road has been unveiled in London and is hailed as the world's first responsive road. It was developed by a company called Umbrellium for insurer Direct Line and has HD cameras and LEDs embedded into the road surface.

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