Inventions

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Wednesday, January 22, 2020

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Frog 

Scientists in the United States claim to have created the world’s first living robots using stem cells from frog embryos. The tiny hybrids, designed on a supercomputer at the University of Vermont (UVM) and then assembled by biologists at Tufts University, are “entirely new life-forms” known as xenobots. “These are novel living machines,” said Joshua Bongard, a computer scientist and robotics expert at the UVM who co-led the research. “They’re neither a traditional robot nor a known species of animal. It’s a new class of artefact: a living, programmable organism.”

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Lowline Underground Park

An abandoned subway terminal in New York City is being pitched for redevelopment into a sunlit, subterranean park -- replete with 60,000 square feet of flowers, ponds and trees. Located in Manhattan's trendy Lower East Side, the vast underground space -- which is about the size of a football field -- has remained untouched since the terminal was discontinued back in 1948.  Now, a group of entrepreneurs are proposing an elaborate green makeover, in which sunlight would be "harvested" above ground and channeled into the vaults below via a network of fiber-optic cables -- creating an environment apparently filled with natural light and, in theory, ripe for growing all the foliage of a typical city park.  

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Hedy Lamarr

Hedy Lamarr (Nov 9, 1914 - Jan  19, 2000)   Hollywood is a place where folks are often recognized more for their looks than their talent - and actress Hedy Lamarr was no exception. But it's what she invented in her spare time - to help end that war - that has history turning a kinder eye, linking her to a bombshell of a whole different sort. 

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climate emergency 2

KIBBUTZ TZE’ELIM, Israel —Eight tons of trash are piled high at the entrance of a small factory in this tree-lined kibbutz — rotting food mixed with plastic bags, dirty paper, castoff bottles and containers, even broken toys. But nothing is headed for a landfill. Instead, what’s next is a process that could revolutionize recycling.

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flying_high_sugar_volt

Look up into the skies today at a passing aeroplane and the view is not that much different to the one you would have seen 60 years ago. Then and now, most airliners have two wings, a cigar-shaped fuselage and a trio of vertical and horizontal stabilizers at the tail. If it isn't broke, the mantra has been, why fix it, particularly when your design needs to travel through the air at several hundred miles an hour packed with people.