If you’re sick to death of the reality and dumb games shows crowding the air waves this summer, Discovery Channel’s fall programming lineup is offering a welcome reprieve.
The new PROTOTYPE THIS! 13-part series kicks off this October, providing viewers with the opportunity to live with a team of engineers through the design process—from the early drawing board stage through production and view all the ups and downs along the way. The series, shot entirely in high definition, features a so-called dream team of electronics specialists, engineers, professors and special effects experts who combine their various talents and ideas to create forward-thinking products that tackle the modern inconveniences and problems we all confront on a daily basis. Some of the innovations on tap for the series: a road rage-proof car, a six-legged robot that carries a human through any terrain and a waterslide simulator that provides an amusement park-like thrill ride from the comforts of home. Perhaps the most out there is a high-tech alarm clock that, get this, provides the usual wake-up chime along with an automated shower, valet service and mechanized butler to kick you out the door. Now couldn’t you use one of those?
Science fiction author Isaac Asimov may have the best rules for effective brainstorming and creativity. His never-before-published essay, "On Creativity," recently made it to the Web pages of MIT Technology Review.
Much has been made over the potentially dangerous flammability of lithium-ion batteries after major companies like Boeing, Sony, and Tesla have grappled with well-publicized battery fires. Researchers at Stanford University may have come up with a solution to this problem with a smart sensor for lithium-ion batteries that provides a warning if the battery is about to overheat or catch fire.
In this new Design News feature, "How it Works," we’re starting off by examining the inner workings of the electronic cigarette. While e-cigarettes seemed like a gimmick just two or three years ago, they’re catching fire -- so to speak. Sales topped $1 billion last year and are set to hit $10 billion by 2017. Cigarette companies are fighting back by buying up e-cigarette manufacturers.
Advertised as the "Most Powerful Tablet Under $100," the Kindle Fire HD 6 was too tempting for the team at iFixit to pass up. Join us to find out if inexpensive means cheap, irreparable, or just down right economical. It's teardown time!
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