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Elevators are absolutely vital in tall buildings, but they have their limits -- they can only move so quickly, and they can't usually move sideways to fetch you from the far side of a building. Both of those problems should be solved at once if German firm ThyssenKrupp has its way. Its new Multi e...

December 2nd 2014 at 2:48pm 0 Comments
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Magnetic levitation keyboards have been around for a while, but they've never really taken off, or floated our boats, or attracted much atten... Anyway, a Taiwanese manufacturer called Darfon is persevering with the idea, and it's discovered that maglev keys, which rest on opposing magnets instead...

June 6th 2014 at 12:29pm 0 Comments
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A robot doesn't have to big, powerful and terrifying to be worthwhile, and many people are working on miniature machines that are just as cool. Some of these endeavors show promise in medicine, but there are plenty of potential uses for microbots, especially when you can persuade a swarm of them t...

April 17th 2014 at 3:17pm 0 Comments
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You won't find this on its official specs list, but Google's Nexus 7 tablet apparently has a magnet-enabled sensor that'll automatically set the display to sleep -- it's hard not to think of the iPad's Smart Cover. YouTube user wwscoggin was able to discover and pin-point the functionality near th...

July 11th 2012 at 5:31pm 0 Comments
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Playback of 3D motion capture with a computer is nothing new, but how about with a solid levitating object? MIT's Media Lab has developed ZeroN, a large magnet and 3D actuator, which can fly an "interaction element" (aka ball bearing) and control its position in space. You can also bump it to and...

May 14th 2012 at 4:07pm 0 Comments
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No, it doesn't cover the totality of the Smart Cover itself (or any case that folds into a triangle), but Apple has now managed to obtain a patent for one of the accessory's key bits of functionality. First filed in July of 2011 and published by the USPTO today, the patent described as an "accesso...

March 20th 2012 at 1:19pm 0 Comments
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Instead of spending millions upon millions to clean up the next oil spill, why don't we just all pitch in and buy some soap? That's basically what researchers at the University of Bristol are proposing, with a new kind of soap that's apparently like no other. This soap, you see, is magnetic, which...

January 24th 2012 at 4:24pm 0 Comments
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The portability of the iPad and iPhone makes it easy to use these devices in your kitchen, at your desk and everywhere in between. One challenge to using your iPad in these locations is finding a case, holder or stand that protects your device from inadvertent spills or drops. One company with...

January 9th 2012 at 9:00am 0 Comments