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More Reasons to Use 3D Printing & Plastics for Lightweighting Cars
Engineering Materials 
12/1/2014  5 comments
Here are a few more reasons to use 3D printing for making individual parts for cars and scooters, and investment casting from Solvay, Stratasys, and several divisions of CRP Group.
Move Over Pasta -- Machinery Also Key Contribution from Italy
Blog 
12/1/2014  6 comments
Machines Italia is co-sponsoring with Design News the UX Italia video contest, which is asking companies to submit at least a three-minute video testimonial of how the user experience of Italian machinery, technology, or other experience solutions are essential to the business’s success.
Don’t Let Faulty Circuit Protection Damage Your Device
Blog 
12/1/2014  2 comments
Circuit protection is critical in the design of electronic devices. This Focus on Fundamentals course covers the basics of sound circuit protection.
What Innovations Lay Hidden Inside the Nexus 6?
Blog 
11/28/2014  8 comments
The phablet wars continue. Today we welcome the Nexus 6 -- a joint collaboration between Google and Motorola.
Fire-Resistant Steel Made to Order Using Thermodynamic Simulation
Blog 
11/28/2014  Post a comment
According to a study by the National Institute of Standards and Technology, one of the factors in the collapse of the original World Trade Center towers on Sept. 11, 2001, was the reduction in the yield strength of the steel reinforcement as a result of the high temperatures of the fire and the loss of thermal insulation.
Get Your 15 Minutes of DIY Fame
Gadget Freak 
11/28/2014  Post a comment
If you have a Gadget Freak project, we have a reader who wants to make it. And not only will you get your 15 minutes of fame on our website and social media channels, you will also receive $500 and be automatically entered into the 2015 Gadget Freak of the Year contest.
Deep Learning is the Future of Automation and Robotics
Blog 
11/28/2014  2 comments
Robots are getting more agile and automation systems are becoming more complex. Yet the most impressive development in robotics and automation is increased intelligence. Machines in automation are increasingly able to analyze huge amounts of data. They are often able to see, speak, even imitate patterns of human thinking. Researchers at European Automation call this deep learning.
Hack Thanksgiving (Don’t Be a Tech Turkey)!
Blog 
11/27/2014  21 comments
Thanksgiving is a time for family. A time for togetherness. A time for… tech?
The IoT Comes to Your Backyard
Blog 
11/26/2014  17 comments
The promise of the Internet of Things (IoT) is that devices, gadgets, and appliances we use every day will be able to communicate with one another. This potential is not limited to household items or smartphones, but also things we find in our yard and garden, as evidenced by a recent challenge from the element14 design community.
Robo-Fabric Brings New Dimension to Wearable Tech
Blog 
11/26/2014  14 comments
Researchers have developed a new flexible fabric that integrates both movement and sensors, introducing new potential for technology-embedded clothing and soft robots.
Writers Are Getting 3D Printing Wrong
Made by Monkeys 
11/26/2014  14 comments
Made by Monkeys highlights products that somehow slipped by the QC cops.
Engineer Comic Works in PowerPoint
Blog 
11/26/2014  15 comments
If you didn't realize that PowerPoint presentations are inherently hilarious, you have to see Don McMillan take one apart. McMillan -- aka the Technically Funny Comic -- worked for 10 years as an engineer before he switched to stand-up comedy.
Engineering Disasters: Galloping Gertie – the Tacoma Narrows Bridge
Blog 
11/25/2014  12 comments
The first Tacoma Narrows Bridge was a Washington State suspension bridge that opened in 1940 and spanned the Tacoma Narrows strait of Puget Sound between Tacoma and the Kitsap Peninsula. It opened to traffic on July 1, 1940, and dramatically collapsed into Puget Sound on November 7, just four months after it opened.
How to Design Better 'Things'
Blog 
11/25/2014  11 comments
Noting that we now live in an era of “confusion and ill-conceived stuff,” Ammunition design studio founder Robert Brunner, speaking at Gigaom Roadmap, said that by adding connectivity to everything and its mother, we aren't necessarily doing ourselves any favors, with many ‘things’ just fine in their unconnected state.
Is Sexism Driving Women Out of Engineering?
Blog 
11/25/2014  32 comments
When my daughter decided she wanted to study engineering, I was very proud of her. At the same time, in the back of my mind, I wondered if she knew what she was in for.
Autodesk, Artec Make 3D Modeling Easier
Blog 
11/25/2014  1 comment
Autodesk has teamed up with 3D scanner provider Artec to link CAD software and 3D scanners to make it faster and easier to create accurate 3D mesh models for printing or digital use.
Gadget Freak of the Year Reader Vote: Round 2
Gadget Freak 
11/24/2014  3 comments
Last year you helped Design News and Allied Electronics crown its first-ever Gadget Freak of the Year, and we need your help again. Vote in round 2 of our second-annual contest.
Driverless Cars Require More Passenger Trust
Blog 
11/24/2014  61 comments
The key to autonomous driving is not to forget about the driver, and to remember that passengers want a sense of control, as opposed to being utterly passive backseat drivers.
HP's 3D Printing Plans Still Seem a Little Out of Reach
Engineering Materials 
11/24/2014  5 comments
HP revealed more of its 3D printing plans in a recent webinar. Senior vice president of inkjet and graphics solution business Stephen Nigro spoke about how the technology works and expanded on HP's vision of open collaboration to commercialize its Multi Jet Fusion 3D printing technology for end-production, and open collaboration on new materials. He also said HP will create software to help users decide when to use Multi Jet Fusion versus conventional subtractive manufacturing.
12 Black Friday Gadgets for Someone You Hate
Blog 
11/21/2014  30 comments
Get a load of these strange product designs. What's in the water these design engineers are drinking?
van Gogh's 'Starry Night' Transformed into Solar-Powered Bike Path
Blog 
11/21/2014  21 comments
The Dutch are known for their love of bicycling, and they’ve also long been early adopters of green-energy and smart-city technologies. So it seems fitting that a town in which painter Vincent van Gogh once lived has given him a very Dutch-like tribute -- a bike path lit by a special smart paint in the style of the artist's “Starry Night” painting.
What Reality Will You Make?
STEM Connection 
11/21/2014  8 comments
Cal Poly students use 3D printing to take flight -- and pass their class.
MegaBots Take Giant Robots From Science Fiction to Reality
Blog 
11/20/2014  11 comments
Ever wanted your own giant robot? Three engineers did, and now they want to make 15-ft, fighting MegaBots a household name.
10 Packaging Technologies at Pack Expo
Blog 
11/20/2014  3 comments
Here are 10 examples of the wide range of new technology on display at Pack Expo in Chicago earlier this month.
Desert Scorpions Inspire Abrasion-Resistant Surfaces
Blog 
11/20/2014  4 comments
For decades, engineers have worked to combat erosion by developing high-strength alloys, composites, and surface coatings. However, in a new paper, a team at Jilin University in China turned to one of the most deadly animals in the world for inspiration -- the yellow fat-backed scorpion.
Video: Bamboo-Based Hybrid Wind Turbine Aimed at Developing World
Blog 
11/20/2014  Post a comment
Green energy is being billed as a way to make communities that are energy deprived more self-sustaining. So it makes sense to use natural materials to create devices that harvest this type of energy. That’s the idea behind a hybrid wind/solar energy harvester made of bamboo that’s been developed by UVM researchers.
Engineering Disasters: Cracked Fitting Brings Down DC-10
Electronics News 
11/19/2014  39 comments
The question of whether engineers could have foreseen the shortcut maintenance procedures that led to the crash of American Airlines Flight 191 in 1979 will probably linger for as long as there is an engineering profession.
Keyssa: 'Kiss Old Connectors Goodbye'
Blog 
11/19/2014  11 comments
Anyone who’s ever moved files from a hard drive to a computer has sat patiently waiting for the transfer to complete. But what if this process could be done wirelessly, without having to connect devices with cables, and in seconds?
Where Rubber Meets the Bike Rack
Made by Monkeys 
11/19/2014  11 comments
Made by Monkeys highlights products that somehow slipped by the QC cops.
Bullet-Proof Software Architecture Is Key to Product Development
Blog 
11/19/2014  1 comment
The CEC class, "An Introduction to Embedded Software Architecture and Design," will give attendees a path to successful software architecture for product design.
Forget About the Cool Factor – 3D Printing Saves Time & Money
Guest Blogs 
11/19/2014  3 comments
Iterative design — the cycle of prototyping, testing, analyzing, and refining a product — existed long before additive manufacturing, but it has never been as efficient and approachable as it is today with 3D printing.
Hilarious Engineer Talks Cardinal Grameters
Blog 
11/19/2014  9 comments
Check out this jet engine technology explained in engineering gobbledegook.
Take a Teardown 'Voyage' With Kindle
Blog 
11/18/2014  6 comments
Look and be amazed! Amazon has added a new tablet to its e-reader lineup, and this one aims to perfect the reading experience. But can it beat Amazon's rocky repairability record?
Engineers Make Great Leaders
Pamela Moore 
11/18/2014  10 comments
The Harvard Business Review claims engineers make great CEOs. What do you think?
Keeping It Together With Bolted Joints
Blog 
11/18/2014  5 comments
It's not uncommon for thousands of dollars worth of equipment to be held together by $.10 screws. Because of their low cost and high degree of standardization, screws, studs, bolts, and nuts tend to be thought of as commodity products. As a result, bolted joints too often fail to receive the level of attention they deserve in engineering design.
CPG Packagers Want Flexibility in Product Design
Blog 
11/18/2014  1 comment
The packaging industry is managing major changes in consumer packaging, from multi-versions of packages to the drive for less packaging waste.
Gadget Freak of the Year: Did You Vote Yet?
Gadget Freak 
11/18/2014  Post a comment
There is less than a week left to vote in Round 1 of our second-annual Gadget Freak of the Year contest, sponsored by Allied Electronics.
The Government Can Spy on Cellphones, And You Can't Stop It
Chris Wiltz 
11/17/2014  31 comments
It doesn't matter what type of cellphone you own, law enforcement and malicious hackers can use 'fake cellular towers' to track you. And the government is putting the technology in spy planes.
11 Robots Take Flight
Blog 
11/17/2014  9 comments
Flying robot hardware is still important, but what's getting as interesting now is some of the new uses, such as equipping them with medical equipment for aiding first responders, monitoring and recording biometric health data about athletes, and commercial aircraft inspection.
Packaging Wants Industry 4.0 to Replace Retirees
Blog 
11/17/2014  2 comments
Advanced automation is solving a multitude of challenges in packaging, not the least of which is the retired-Boomer brain drain.
Video: German Kids Can Build Better LEGO Robots
STEM Connection 
11/17/2014  4 comments
Google has teamed up with the German research institute Fraunhofer IAIS to develop and offer OpenRoberta, which simplifies programming for LEGO Mindstorm robots for German kids and teachers and lets them control the robots from mobile devices.
Did You Know that Time Constants May Not Be Constant?
Guest Blogs 
11/17/2014  Post a comment
People usually think of a time constant as the time it takes a first order system to change 63% of the way to the steady state value in response to a step change in the input -- it’s basically a measure of the responsiveness of the system. This is true, but in reality, time constants are often not constant. They can change just like system gains change as the environment or the geometry of the system changes.
Do You Dream in CAD? You Might Be an Engineer
Blog 
11/14/2014  20 comments
You let us know through your comments on the last “You know you’re an engineer if ...” post that you agree and disagree with the notions of what makes an engineer tick. Here are a dozen more to consider.
Slideshow: Makers Decorate White House for the Holidays
STEM Connection 
11/14/2014  6 comments
The ornaments will be the result of the first-ever White House 3D-Printed Ornament Challenge, a contest that shows the Obama administration promoting one of the most disruptive design technologies to date.
You Generate the Power on Polaris eBike
Blog 
11/14/2014  23 comments
The new line of Polaris eBikes features technology called Perpetual Arc Regeneration that allows a rider’s pedaling and other uses of the bike’s motor system to generate power to the bike’s battery in a number of ways.
The Atlas Robot is Agile Enough to Mimic 'The Karate Kid'
Blog 
11/14/2014  5 comments
The Atlas robot, a DARPA project built by a subsidiary of Google, is coordinated enough to easily balance on one leg and navigate raised obstacles.
Engineering Disasters: A Deadly Mistake in Kansas City
Electronics News 
11/13/2014  51 comments
More than 35 years later, the post-mortem on one of the country’s worst engineering disasters appears to be simple. A contractor asked for a change in an original design. The change was approved by engineers, later resulting in a mammoth structural collapse that killed 114 people and injured 216 more.
Device Will Never Let You Forget Your Password -- it's Your Heartbeat
Blog 
11/13/2014  25 comments
Biometric identification for access to devices is nothing new, but a Canadian company has put a new spin on the technology by using people’s heartbeats to allow them to wirelessly access their devices -- including their smartphone, computer, car, or even their home.
The Sound Beneath the Floors
Guest Blogs 
11/13/2014  4 comments
At its core, sound is a relatively simple natural phenomenon caused by pressure pulsations or vibrations propagating through various mediums in the world around us. Studies have shown that the complete absence of sound can drive a person insane, causing them to experience hallucinations. Likewise, loud and overwhelming sound can have the same effect. This especially holds true in manufacturing and plant environments where loud noises are the norm.
Solar Sponge Generates Steam by Soaking Up the Sun's Rays
Blog 
11/13/2014  4 comments
While previous methods of creating steam involved heating liquids, this solar sponge generates a great amount of steam for hygienic and green energy purposes by simply using solar energy.
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