tech e blog

Paul Allen Plane

Paul Allen stated that Stratolaunch's carrier aircraft would have a wingspan of 385-feet, or about 20-feet longer than an Apollo-era Saturn V and about half as long as the Hindenburg class airships. This would make it the largest airplane, by wingspan, to ever fly. It will weigh in at over 1.2-million-pounds including the fully fueled launch vehicle and be powered by six 46,000-66,500 lbf thrust-range jet engines, that are planned to be sourced from two used 747-400s that will be cannibalized for engines, avionics, flight deck, landing gear and other proven systems that can be recycled to cut development costs." Click here to view the first image in today's viral picture gallery. Continue reading to watch the five most popular viral videos of today.

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iSaber

Photo credit: Martin Hajek

If Apple somehow landed a lightsaber contract, this is probably what they'd look like, or so 3D modeler extraordinaire Martin Hajek thinks. In the films, the lightsaber's energy blade cuts or burns/melts through most substances without resistance. It leaves cauterized wounds in flesh, but can be deflected by another lightsaber's blade, or by energy shields. Some exotic saber-proof materials have been introduced in the Expanded Universe. An active lightsaber gives off a distinctive hum, which rises in pitch and volume as the blade is moved rapidly through the air. Bringing the blade into contact with another lightsaber's blade produces a loud crackle. Continue reading for more pictures.

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iPad Hologram

We have seen the future of holograms, and it includes the Holocube HC Tablet. This gadget essentially transforms your iPad Air 2 into a holographic projector, thanks to a transparent synthetic mirror with a solid hinge at a 45° angle that captures moving media on the screen. Images are seemingly projected onto thin air. It's crafted with a thin aluminum fingerprint-resistant housing to ensure that the iPad's sleek aesthetic minimalist designed isn't ruined. Continue reading for a video and more pictures.

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Solar Death Ray

Kevin Moore and Grant Reynolds of the Science Channel made a crazy solar death ray in their very own garage. Its main component is a Fresnel lens, which focuses light into a beam that can melt aluminum, meaning it reaches temperatures in excess of 660°C (1,220°F). Simply put, the duo were inspired to harness light to burn metal after thinking about children using small magnifying glasses to melt plastic toys. So, they built a basic frame from wood and positioned the lens - which can capture a greater degree of light thanks to its ridged surface - to focus the sun's ray to a small point. Continue reading for the video and more information.

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CoeLux Artificial Sunlight

Priced from $68,600 with installation, the CoeLux system recreates the look of sunlight through a skylight that uses a thin coating of nanoparticles to accurately simulate light through Earth's atmosphere and the effect known as Rayleigh scattering. This doesn't just recreate the color temperature, but the feeling of sunlight as well. Continue reading for a video, more pictures and additional information.

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Dominator Track System

The Dominator Track System comes in two different sizes: standard Dominator with 121" long tracks and 720 square inches of contact area, and the XL Dominator, with 136" long tracks offering a contact surface of 855 square inches per track unit. They can be installed on most vehicles in under an hour without any modifications required to the car. Best of all, smaller vehicles - like the Subaru WRX - are able to use it, as the design of the system is built in such way that most of the power is transferred directly to the ground. Continue reading for a video, more pictures and additional information.

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Volkswagen Hover Car

First unveiled several years ago, the futuristic Volkswagen Hover car is now trending again online. The Hover Car is basically a two-seater zero emissions vehicle that hovers above ground and travels along electromagnetic road networks in China. It can automatically detect other vehicles on the road while navigating China's congested traffic centers, and its small footprint makes it easy to park. Click here to view the first image in this week's WINS gallery. Continue reading for a viral video of a snowmobile expert navigating through an avalanche.

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Smart Rifle

Not just a rifle, this Smart Gun for the Canadian Armed Forces is capable of firing new lightweight telescoped ammunition, and a secondary effects module that adds either a three-round 40 mm grenade launcher or a 12-gauge shotgun. That's not all, there's also a NATO-standard power and data bus that enables users to attach smart accessories, such as electro-optical sights and position sensors that connect to command and control networks. Continue reading for a video and more information.

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Bond Handwriting Robot

We have seen the future of handwriting robots, and it's "Bond". To start, users submit a handwriting sample online, which then the software analyzes to identify how you form each letter of the alphabet, along with things like the slant and spacing of your writing. Next, you choose a blank card from the Bond website whenever you want to send someone special a note and send the typed text you want to have written, along with the recipient's name and address. The company's 11 robots, or at least one of them, will then write the text in the card, which will subsequently be mailed. If you happen to lose a check (or checkbook) around company headquarters, we recommend voiding it immediately. Continue reading for a video and more information.

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New Steel

Researchers at the Graduate Institute of Ferrous Technology (GIFT) at Pohang University of Science and Technology in South Korea have developed a new steel alloy that has the strength and lightness of titanium alloy. It's made from an amalgam of steel, aluminum, carbon, manganese, nickel, and promises to be low-cost and readily available due to its mix of common minerals. One caveat: increasing the aluminum content in steel negatively affects its ductility (the way a material behaves under tensile stress) which results in its increasing vulnerability to fracture. Continue reading for a video and more information.

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