Power consumption is becoming a critical part even for large, specialized systems like nondestructive ultrasonic testing instruments. Dapco Industries Inc. unveiled a tester and is shipping the first one to Union Pacific Railroad, which will use the equipment to peer inside railroad rails. The test system can also be used to examine high-pressure gas cylinders and many other critical metal products. Dapco picked Texas Instruments' TMS320C6472, a six-core DSP chip, in large part because of its low power consumption. That paves the way for a portable product that's currently moving toward production, while also reducing heat generation in existing systems.
Some humanoid walking robots are also good at running, balancing, and coordinated movements in group settings. Several of our sports robots have won regional or worldwide acclaim in the RoboCup soccer World Cup, or FIRST Robotics competitions. Others include the world's first hockey-playing robot and a trash-talking Scrabble player.
The DDV-IP is a two-wheeled self-balancing robot that can deliver cold beverages to thirsty folks on hot summer days. A wireless RF remote enables manual control of the device beyond the act of self-balancing. All of the features of the DDV-IP result in an effective delivery vehicle while providing entertainment to the user.
Eric Doster of iFixit talks about the most surprising aspect of the Microsoft Surface Pro 3 teardown. In a presentation at Medical Design & Manufacturing Midwest, iFixit gave the Surface Pro 3 a score of one (out of a possible 10) for repairability.
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