Facebook Acquires Oculus Rift: What Does It Mean?

OculusRift1

Among gamers, the surprise acquisition of VR headset maker Oculus Rift by Facebook is being treated as a harbinger of the end times. Many are investing a great deal of hope in the next-gen virtual-reality tech being developed by Oculus Rift, believing it may kick gaming to the next level. To have that very tech [Read More...]

OneNote Is Now Free

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Microsoft’s OneNote note-taking app is now free for Windows and Mac. I’m just putting this out there as a public service; not because I use OneNote: I don’t. I’m downloading it as I write this post. I’ve done everything I can to scrape as much Microsoft as possible from my computer. I use Scrivener and [Read More...]

Crowd-sourcing the Search For Flight 370

DigitalglobeTomnodMalaysianAircraft

There are few news stories that capture and hold my interest, but I’ve been following the mysterious disappearance of Malaysia Air MH370 very closely. At first it was the simple yet crushing tragedy of 239 souls being lost, most likely to human cruelty. But it’s the echoes of Twilight Zone and Stephen King stories–the sheer strangeness of it all–that [Read More...]

The Dirty Little Secret About Ellen’s Oscar Selfie

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You know, this one: It was a wacky, seemingly spontaneous moment in which Ellen and a bunch of stars took a selfie, and then she urged people to make it the most retweeted photo ever. And they did! I think it got almost 3 million retweets. That’s the only reason I even know about: it [Read More...]

Child’s Heart Surgery Aided By 3D-Printed Model

Michael Clevenger/The Courier-Journal

Kentucky heart surgeon Erle Austin knew that fixing 14-month-old Roland Lian Cung Bawi’s heart would be a delicate process, and he wanted as much information as possible before going in. He went to the engineering school at University of Louisville help with a computer model of the boy’s heart, and they were able to use a 3D printer to [Read More...]

The Astrolabe [Beautiful Machines]

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When I was asked to come up with a header for this blog, I submitted two ideas to Patheos: a robotic riff on Michelangelo’s Creation of Adam, and an image of an astrolabe. Unable to choose between the two, I suggested that the art department just combine them, and the striking image above was born. I first encountered [Read More...]

Technology Turned Against Kiev Protestors

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Kiev is exploding in protests as Ukraine’s president attempts to move the country away from EU membership and closer into the Russian orbit. On Tuesday, anyone in the vicinity of the protests received the following message on their phones: “Dear subscriber, you are registered as a participant in a mass disturbance.” Registered. Got that? We [Read More...]

Eye Cells From an Inkjet Printer

Close-up of retinal ganglion cell (yellow arrow) in a jet.

Promising news from the world of biotech: Using an inkjet printer, researchers have succeeded in printing adult eye cells for the first time. The demonstration is a step toward producing tissue implants that could cure some types of blindness. Scientists have previously printed embryonic stem cells and other immature cells. But scientists had thought adult [Read More...]


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