The New Wave Industrial Revolution
The application of open source philosophy paired with emerging technologies is creating the next wave of industrial revolution; a time when manufacturing can happen anywhere, any time and for anything. A new project called ‘WikiHouse’ demonstrates this by applying open source to design a community library of 3D models. On the website builders and designers can contribute, access, and amend designs in order to fabricate an entire home. The best thing is these modular designs are largely sustainable and are being tested in places where they are needed most: developing counties.
Turn Your Bike into a Smart Bike
As the trend toward integrating technology into everything steam rolls on, some really useful products are emerging. ‘Helios Bars’, a set of smart handle bars produced by a bike builder from the US, is just one of them, allowing you to turn any bike into a smart bike. The handle bars include features like an LED head lamp, indicator lights that can be customised to match your bike or mood and can change colour depending on your speed, and even a GPS chip that can both channel directions from Google maps, or track a thief if they stupidly steal your robot ride. Check it out here
Robots do as they’re told over and over again and people love to drink cocktails over and over again. Combining the two just seems like a no brainer, doesn’t it? For patrons drinking pleasure, MIT has developed ‘Makr Shakr’, a robot that mixes cocktails, takes drink orders and personalises concoctions via a smartphone app. Through the app the drinker can also connect into the broader social context of the bar and more importantly it makes them acutely aware of their own alcohol consumption. It is so futuristic and silly it could only have been made by geeks at MIT. You can see it here
These days millions of people navigate a plethora of mainstream entertainment options via social feeds like Facebook and Twitter. A problem Sky Brazil faced was how they could harness this behavior to help people who subscribed to SKY HD. In a Twitter first they developed ‘#SKYREC’, a neat service that allows subscribers to retweet a show they want to see from the @skybrasil feed to record it. The campaign results in double happiness with #SKYREC getting some social propagation love from their subscriber (perhaps creating a little envy in non-subscribers) and the subscriber’s show being added to their SKY box at home.
The Jift of Correct Pronunciation
Oh the uproar. Yep, the Internet went a little nuts this week with a 5 word proclamation ‘it’s pronounced ‘Jif’ not ‘Gif’. Mr Steve Wilhite, the man who invented the much loved and popular Gif file format, broadcast these shocking words in his digitally delivered acceptance speech for his Webby Lifetime Achievement Award. The jokes have not stopped since, as the general consensus is ‘Gif’ makes more grammatical sense than ‘Jif’ to English speakers. Learn more here