Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) researchers have managed to use an enzyme found in red blood cells to create self-healing concrete that is four times more durable than traditional the standard material, extending the life of these structures by eliminating the need for expensive repairs or replacements. More specifically, it makes use of carbonic anhydrase (CA), an enzyme found in red blood cells that quickly transfers CO2 from the cells to the blood stream. Read more for a video to see it in-action and additional information.
Photo credit: Joe Haupt
Long before the Apple Watch and other smartwatches, there was the Seiko Data-2000. This wristwatch computer was released in 1983 and came bundled with an external keyboard for data-entry. Unlike the devices of today, data had to be synced from the keyboard to the watch using electro-magnetic coupling, or in other words, a wireless dock. It was named Data-2000 for its ability to store 2000 characters, while its memory is a minuscule 112 digits. Read more for two videos and additional information.
Italian artist Salvatore Garau managed to sell an invisible sculpture for a whopping $18,300 USD recently and it doesn’t include an accompanying NFT. This piece was titled Lo Sono (translates to “I am”), and it supposedly shows this vacuum is nothing more than a space full of energy condensed and transformed into particles. Auction house Art-Rite expected it to sell for between $7200-$11000, but this piece shattered expectations. Read more for a video of the piece and additional information.
Ever wonder what the theoretical limit is for drinking from a straw? If so, engineer James J. Orgill of the Action Lab attempts to find out in his latest experiment. Put simply, he tried drinking from his custom-built 34 ft straw and getting any kind of liquid through such a long tube can get tiring to say the least. So, an air compressor was brought in for the job. Read more to see what happened next.
Does this school bus look somewhat familiar? If so, that’s because it’s based on the Dodge Power Wagon, a 4WD medium duty truck that was produced in various model series between 1945 and 1980. It was actually the first 4×4 medium duty truck produced by a major manufacturer in a civilian version, marking a significant predecessor to the many modern four wheel drive trucks in use today. Alan Vanevenhoven transformed a Power Wagon into a Hellcat V8-powered school bus. Read more for a video, additional pictures and information.
Photo credit: Shyaoman Zhang
Tardigrades have earned the reputation for being one of the most resilient creatures in the animal kingdom, whether it be in the vacuum of space, the depths of a volcano, or even an Antarctic lake nearly a mile underground. A recent study had scientists firing canisters full of tardigrades out of a high-speed gun at various speeds to see if they could survive the pressure of each resulting impact. Read more for a video and additional information.
Scientifically speaking, ball lightning is still a yet to be explained phenomenon described as luminescent, spherical objects that vary from pea-sized to several meters in diameter. They are normally associated with thunderstorms, and are described to last considerably longer than the split-second flash of a lightning bolt. The earliest recorded reports state that the phenomenon eventually explodes and leaves behind a sulfur-like odor. Read more for two videos and additional information.
UCL researchers conducted a study where their trained people to use a robotic third thumb, and they discovered that it forced their brains to adapt quickly. This meant the participants were able to effectively perform dextrous tasks, such as building a tower of blocks using their one hand, but with two thumbs). At the end, the 20 participants trained to use the thumb felt like it was actually a part of their body. Read more for a video and additional information.
Back in 1984, smartphones and tablets didn’t exist, so checking email wasn’t quite as easy. One BBC reporter traveled all the way to Japan to show us how people completed these tasks using an acoustic modem and a TRS-80 Model 100. The latter is basically a portable computer first introduced in 1983, and one of the first notebook-style computers equipped with a keyboard as well as liquid crystal display. Read more for the video and additional information.
Soya no Sohi, also known as Azusa Gakuyuki on Twitter, gained thousands of fans on social media platforms as a young motorcycle enthusiast traveling the scenic roadways of northern Japan. This social media influencer traversed through mountains, beaches and the countryside on Yamaha sport bikes. What most did not know is that Soya was actually Yasuo Nakajima, a 50-year-old man who used the AI-powered FaceApp to transform his face in every shot. Read more for a video and additional information.