The U.S. Navy demonstrates how it can set a boat on fire remotely using a laser. Which is super awesome as a video, and slightly terrifying as a demonstration of future military capabilities. Also, Steve Jobs finally agrees to an authorized biography, Sony blinks in the George Hotz PS3 jailbreaking lawsuit, smart phone users are wasting hundreds of dollars a year, and Facebook is working on its latest venture: the Socialist Network. --MollySubscribe: iTunes (MP3) | iTunes (320x180) | iTunes (640x360) | RSS (MP3) | RSS (320x180) | RSS (640x360)… Read more
Sure, Bobby Boy Scout can tie a square knot and start a fire using flint and steel, but can he build a robot? If so, he'll now be able to sew a robotics merit badge to his sash.
The badge is part of the Boy Scouts of America's new STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) curriculum. One of 31 STEM-related merit badges, it's a nod to robots' increasingly wide-reaching impact and part of the BSA's ongoing attempt to teach its ranks relevant skills.
"While the guiding principles of scouting--service to others, leadership, personal achievement, and respect for the outdoors--will never change, we continue to adapt programs to prepare young people for success in all areas of life," BSA Chief Scout Executive Bob Mazzuca said in a statement.
Earning the bot badge will mean a scout not only has a handle on actuators, sensors, and programming, but on the myriad ways robots are tightening their metallic grip. … Read more
I think we're entering the golden age of headphone design. Over the last few years the competition's heated up and at nearly every price level, headphone performance standards are improving at a fast and furious rate. For example, the TDK EB900 in-ear headphone I heard at the CNET office a few weeks ago were pretty amazing for around $100, but the all-new NOX Audio Scout is better, a lot better. Headquartered in City of Industry, CA, NOX Audio was founded in 2009.
The superlightweight design is extremely comfortable, and while my ears are sometimes very fussy about getting a tight seal for best bass response, I had no trouble with the Scout's silicone eartips.
The design features "balanced armature technology," which is rarely seen in headphones in the Scout's price class (I don't know of any others). The Scout's cable has an inline omnidirectional microphone, and according to the Scout press release, "the world's smallest send/end button, making it an ideal device for cell phones, portable media players and gaming handhelds." Best of all, the Scout's flat cable was the least tangle-prone headphone wire I've ever used. Jumble it up any which way, shove it into your pocket, and it'll never tie itself into knots. That's a first! … Read more
We've seen prototype cable-crawling robots that look like UFOs from the Electric Power Research Institute, but north of the border rolling robots are already checking live high-voltage power lines in the vast Hydro-Quebec network.
A thermo-infrared imager on the device helps identify power problems, and sensors check the electrical resistance of splices. It's also equipped with manipulators that can unscrew bolted assemblies and perform minor repairs on the line.
Operated … Read more
Duplicate files can waste a lot of valuable space on your hard drive, so it's a great idea to check for them periodically. DupScout is a simple program that lets users quickly scan their hard drives and identify duplicate files, potentially freeing up many megabytes of wasted space.
The program's interface is attractive and easy to navigate. There are three different layouts to choose from, and although they're fairly similar, we appreciate that there are options to choose from. Using the program is quite simple; users simply select the directory that they want to scan, click a … Read more
Steve jobs picks a digital beef, or digibeef, with Adobe over Apple's holdout on Flash, Palm and HP get married, we talk about the Sony Dash and whether or not we will give it to our mama's for Mother's day. Also, Natali knows nothing about the Boy Scouts, and Donald knows way too much about Lifetime, Television for Women. And Natali is also a little too familiar with iPhone Apps for those over 17.Subscribe with iTunes (audio) Subscribe with iTunes (video) Subscribe with RSS (audio) Subscribe with RSS (video) EPISODE 1217
Palm and HP, sittin’ in … Read more
The Boy Scouts of America has added two awards for kids to earn, the group announced Wednesday. But the focus of these awards might surprise you.
Rather than teach survival techniques, the awards will allow scouts to earn a belt loop or academics pin by playing video games.
Earning the belt loop is actually quite simple. Tiger Cubs, Cub Scouts, and Webelos Scouts can get the loop by explaining "why it is important to have a rating system for video games." They also need to "create a schedule" that includes "chores, homework, and video gaming.&… Read more
The pack mule of the 21st century could well be a robot. Don't be surprised to see it in flight.
Boeing on Monday said that its autonomous, unmanned A160T Hummingbird made quick work of a resupply test last week at the U.S. Army's Dugway Proving Ground in Utah. During the demonstration, the cargo copter carried out seven test flights.
Two of those flights were round trips spanning 150 nautical miles, with the Hummingbird toting 1,250-pound sling loads in a simulated mission between forward operating bases. The aircraft completed the mission in less than the required 6 … Read more