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Saturday, December 16, 2017

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Mobile phones that fold, razor thin handsets powered by flexible batteries or see-through solar panels built directly into a colourful screen. These visions of our mobile future may seem a world away from our rigid, fragile and power-hungry smart-phones today.But they could all soon become reality thanks to the "wonder material" known as graphene. Believe the hype and these single-atom-thick sheets of carbon could soon replace just about every material and component used in modern day smart-phones, making it lighter, faster and with more bells and whistles than ever before.

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Many companies such as IBM, Samsung and Nokia are exploring the possibilities of graphene for everything from batteries and cameras to screens and ear pieces.

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This has to be one of the most surreal, psychedelic and fun forms of public transport. The Tunnel connects East Nanjin Rd on the Bund, and Pudong near the Oriental Pearl TV Tower, running under the Huangpu river in Shanghai, China. It's a psychedelic trip in a glass capsule along the 647-meter flashing, strobing tunnel.

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Apple's iPhone and its rivals may have introduced touchscreens to the masses, but now a raft of technologies promise to change the way we interact with computers forever.

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It is a similar story with computers. Take Microsoft's new Windows 8 operating system, due to be launched by the end of 2012. Its colourful, tile-laden start screen may look startlingly different to older versions of Windows, but beneath the eye candy it's still heavily reliant on the keyboard and mouse. In fact, with one or two notable exceptions, it is striking just how little the way we interact with computers has changed in the last few decades. "The keyboard and mouse are certainly a hard act to follow," says George Fitzmaurice, head of user interface research for US software maker Autodesk. But, despite an apparent lack of apparent novelty in the majority of interfaces of today's mass market devices, there are plenty of ideas in the pipeline.

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A trans-Atlantic journey of just sixty minutes has been promised since the dawn of supersonic flight, but is it now closer to reality?

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The US Air Force has said an attempt to fly its hypersonic jet Waverider at Mach 6 (3,600mph; 5795km/h) failed.  In late September, a secretive experimental vehicle roared into the clear blue skies above a military base deep within the Arctic Circle in Norway. As the sleek, rocket approached its target altitude of 350km (218 miles), it began to arc back to earth, gradually accelerating to so-called hypersonic speeds of up to Mach 8 – about 9,800km/h (6,100 mph).

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The latest version of Apple's increasingly universally accepted cellular phone will be available for purchase worldwide starting on September 28, 2012.

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In addition to all its suddenly old features, the new model includes updates for live-in computer aide Siri, a new operating system and a wider screen.  The new iPhone is 18% thinner and 20% lighter than the iPhone 4S. However, it does not feature an NFC (near field communication) chip to allow it to make touch-less payments.