It's summer, and here in sunny california it's been up to 110 degrees, but the real danger isn't the heat, it's those pesky UV rays. Solestrom has made a bikini that has this in mind, and a UV-meter in the bottom half. Beyond telling you where the sun is at on the UV scale, it also tells you when you need to get out of the sun.
Bottom line: at $190 it's not the cheapest bikini out there, but skin cancer probably costs a lot more.
This weekend I was talking to someone who was convinced Kinko's and FedEx merged because they have a 20 year vision that 3D printing, aka rapid prototyping, will become a major commodity. I can't say I disagree with him either - shipping is expensive, and if you can order something and pick it up from your local Kinko's, or Kinko's can print out the new designer chair, and FexEx could locally ship it to you. The distribution network gets smaller, and shipping costs go down.
I quickly googled this, and found two sources that mention rapid prototyping and Kinko's. The first is from BusinessWeek:
3D printers may never fulfill the sci-fi fantasy of a desktop box that fabricates anything you desire. But given their widening use by manufacturing companies, it's easy to imagine one at your local garage, spitting out replacement brake disks for your Honda. Or in your dentist's office, making a new bridge while you wait. Or at a local FedEx Kinko's, where the kids are printing out custom iPod holders. However that plays out, manufacturing will never look the same.
This quote is from Standford news wire:
Quite likely these 3-D printers won't appear initially in the home, but will first show up in a neighborhood copy shop or in the back room of the retail supplier itself. Said White: "Maybe this is where a Kinko's would come in. Or maybe it'll just be a good way for Toys 'R' Us to keep their inventory down."
I also see WalMart getting into the action since they're all about meeting customer demand for items. I already know that Disneyland has special printers on site to do on demand printing of posters. It still amazes me that movie rental stores like Blockbuster haven't started printing out DVDs on demand. I constantly go in there and see that the new hot movie is out of stock. Maybe this is the reason services like Netflix are on the rise.
After all, this is an on demand world.
The Seiko UC-2000 wrist computer from 1984. Ah, memories. Funny how wrist computers never did seem to do very well. Still people lust after wrist PCs.
Each character was 5x7 pixels. There were 4 lines of text with 10 columns each.
That makes the effective resolution 50x28.
[ Link ]
William Gibson's book, Idoru is coming to anime, according to "Now Playing Magazine". I haven't personally read the book, but I would love to see more cyberpunk on the screen again.
“The studio people that were reading the script all loved it,” Steyermark says. “They said, ‘This is a $150 million movie.’ One of them came back and said, ‘How would you feel about doing this as an anime film?’ I thought that is really cool, really creative. It’s exciting, it’s a great way to do it on a smaller budget. At the same time, [it] could set up a live action version of it.”
They said it could have started in development as early as this May. I hope this is true. It's about time more of these great novels made it to the digital screen.
An AI-powered bionic knee is now publicly available.
"Within those 60 steps the patient has to vary their speed a little bit, the knee starts learning how they move, how they walk, and at that point figures out how to adjust itself with the person," Warren said.
What makes the Rheo-Knee different is that it's the first to use artificial intelligence -- tiny sensors that analyze the knee 1,000 times per second allowing it to adjust to any step or misstep.
Current unit runs about $30,000.
[ Link ]
This camera made by Immersive Media can do quicktime VR like 360 shots, but with video. Even better, the camera can be attached to just about anything, and in this case, it's attached to a backpack.
I can't think of a sweeter camera, it can be used for GIS applications, drone surveillance, immersive video... too bad it costs something like 100k. Ah, someday I'll have one of these, just you watch.
[ Link via flickr ]
I know wearable computing is popular, but what were these people thinking? Oh maybe I'm being too harsh.. it does after all have 32 megabytes of internal memory! Wowzers.
Here's a page showing how Don Papp made his own pair of video sunglasses with Heads Up Display that looks pretty subtle. There are many pictures of the work in progress, all worth checking out.
[ Link ]
I just love this photo. I found a video of someone playing music with a data glove as well. Wonder if data gloves will ever rise again in the world of technology. I sure want one, especially if it looks all sci-fi like this.
Interested in taking photos from your perspective? An eyetap is where the eye is both a display and a camera. Instead of putting the camera up to your eye to take a picture, you mount the camera over your eye, and take pictures when the opportunity strikes. Alex recently made one of these using the super cheap Philips Keychain Digital Camera (P4417S), and I got him to share with us how he did it!
1. Buy a Philips keychain camera ($14 at your local WalMart)
2. Pry it open!
3. Get a pair of old glasses, remove lenses.
4. Mount the camera board on the frame of your glasses (see picture). You can use two screws to do this, or alternately epoxy if you like the smell of toxic chemicals.
5. Connect power wires to the arm of the glasses.
6. Mount 1 AAA battery to same arm of the glasses.
7. Mount the MODEL LCD screen on a removable base. This will allow you to navigate the amazingly simple menu upon startup.
8. Remove annoying black expoxy from around the camera driver, the MR97310 CIF. With a little patience, you will be able to hook up to it, and interface with a windows based PC with a USB cable.
Ta Da! Instant way to capture those cherished moments like when you meet your blind dates for the first time! Added bonus, the eyetap (BCG 2.0), acts as a powerful birth control device. Perfect for the sex crazed teenagers in your home!
Update: thebaboon says this camera does not have an LCD, so not really an eyetap. Still a great project, and there's no reason one couldn't take the next step and add an LCD to it!
I'm not sure if this meets the definition of an eyetap, because I'm not sure if there's an LCD on the back or not. Certainly if it doesn't, this would be a good way to expand on the project because it's *way* cooler if one eye is seeing through the camera itself. Still at approximately $14, this is a really fun project. I've asked Alex for some clarification, and hopefully I'll get a response soon!
[ All of these photos were taken with the eyetap. If you have any questions, you can contact Alex at ninjaspidermonkey at gmail.com. Thanks Alex! ]
SOLAR DEATH RAY (for hot dogs). Bask in the fiery power of the sun! Eat questionable meat products afterwards! If you're going to Burning Man, you can try this out for yourself.
Come on over to the Alternative Energy Zone AEZ and cook your wiener on the SOLAR DEATH RAY 3000
"Where we Harness the Sun for Destructive Fun"
Warning: Do not look into beam with remaining eye.
Okay okay, so this is a little off topic, but it's Friday. Plus all the people in these pictures clearly are full prosthetic. I swear.
Robert Haag put together this captian hook style prosthetic arm that instead of a hook, has a line, and a hook, on a Spiderman fishing pole. It's an amazing project that he made for his son, and this video is way too cute.
This neat thing is part of the Open Prosthetics Project, which has the tag line "Prosthetics shouldn't cost an arm and a leg", is all about producing cheap and useful prosthetics. This is a great start!
Unlike weapons and sprays, the jacket can't be grabbed from a woman and used against her. And it's not as lethal as a gun.
When charged, the jacket crackles audibly. A pair of slits in the outer lining shows the electric arcs that course across the entire middle layer. It's an impressive display of the jacket's power.
Whiton said the "really evil crackling sound" makes him flinch involuntarily: The shocks he received testing the jacket conditioned him to associate the sound with pain.
Now, since these are supposed to be spy glasses, it can't look like you have a small SGI workstation on your person, lest you arouse suspicion. To that end, the small wire connecting the glasses runs through your shirt and into the included MP4 media device, which stores the video. There's no external battery source required for the sunglasses to function beyond plugging them into the MP4.No price info listed at the vendor, however this site looks like it has the same hardware for $399 for the glasses/camera and $249 for the video recorder/player. In fact, their sunglasses look more normal than the one shown here.
The incredibly offensive Lamprey Systems is back, and one of their new games is called Transmaniacon, which deals with... you guessed it, Transhumanism. If you haven't heard of Lamprey systems from the early Mac days, don't download this before considering that this is the same person who created MacJesus - Your personal savior on a floppy disk, and the incredibly sick, Operation Resuce game. He doesn't shy away from making art that offends, so this may be one hell of a bleak view into the cyborg future for all I know.
Transmaniacon 23.9 Mb The Future's Not What It Used To Be!
Transhuman... Posthuman... Transmaniacon! Now become an Overman or Uberwoman without painful augmentation surgery or messy nanotech tissue replacement! Transmaniacon's patented Neuro-Synaptic Interocitor gently restructures the nervous system while inducing therapeutic mutation in the germ-line cells.
"It's like watching 100 years of alt.binaries.slack pics in five seconds through dog-vision!"
- Reverend Ivan Stang
Those who are daring enough, and have a Macintosh with OSX, please comment to the true nature of this game.
[ Link ]
Geeky to the extreme. Gotta love eyetaps.
Stapleton's device uses an ordinary digital camera light sensor to capture a scene which it converts into a mosaic of light spots. An array of infrared LCDs then transforms this mosaic into a pattern of heat points which can be projected onto a user's forehead.
As the human forehead is very sensitive to temperature change, Stapleton believes subjects will be able to translate the heat projection into a coarse image in their mind. The technique could also be used to relay Braille messages, he says.
What other senses can we add to our repertoire?
Sonar from Bats and Dolphins?
Birds ability to sense the earth's magnetic field?
Sharks ability to detect the presence of other lifeforms by sensing their electical field?
MCThis is a performer in Los Angeles who wears a harness that holds a video camera and projector for VJing at various events in the Southern California area. He captures live video, feeds it through a video mixer and a laptop, and then reprojects the video. He also captures video from stationary cameras that are fed to his wearable computer over wireless connections. Check out this short quicktime movie to get a sense of his style. I can't imagine wearing something like this, but I'm sure he puts on one hell of a performance!
*Ahem*, that is, the Florida Institute of Human and and Machine Cognition has developed an interface that stimulates the sensitive nerves of your tongue.
The system, which is getting shown off to Navy and Marine Corps divers next month will supposedly have sonar integration for sub-aqueous orientation, but has already apparently given some landlubber blind people the ability to catch balls, "notice" others walking in front of them, and find doors. With IR, radar, sonar, and other forms of detection, the researchers believe this device will obsolete night vision -- even our own eyes -- sooner than later.
Okay, so I apparently hit a cord with the idea of wearables, I mean t-shirts. If you want a shirt still, email me in the next 24 hrs, and I'll do you one for $12 if you're in the United States. This is basically just to cover costs of shipping and whatnot.
Paypal tomlong at gmail dot com, and include your snail mail address and shirt size in the comments.
By the way, if anyone wants to trade a twiddler2 or a microptical HMD, I'm up for that too!
Wow, after just under four years we've hit 500 posts. The wearable community is still as strong as ever, and more and more of this high tech gadgetry is trickling down into the marketplace. The ideas behind Transhumanism are becomming more popular as well it seems, and I'm really curious what the next 4 years are going to be like in this field.
To celebrate, my girlfriend and I have made these t-shirts. All the writers here are getting them (xander, wearaware, dragoon), and I'm going to extend a few free ones to you guys too.
I might regret this later, but everyone who emails me in the next two hours gets a free shirt. Just tell me your size and I'll make one, and mail it out.
Thanks again everyone, and please drop us a line if you want to give us a tip or just let us know when one of us is doing a good job!
Here's the email: igargoyle at gmail dot com.
I presented a wearable computing prototype based upon an Archos PMA-430 and a network I am starting for people who want to add wearable configurations to handheld electronics such as PDAs and recording devices. The PMA-430 combines the functionality of an embedded Linux computer with a Digital Video Recorder (DVR). A novel accessory converts the proprietary "Multi-Connect Jack" (MCJ) to a more modular, field-reconfigurable 1/10"-center socket. The prototype fits into a single pouch, but other modules are also being developed to be incorporated into vests, jackets, and other designs rather than utility belts. They include integrated active noise cancellation, a music/phone headset, biometric sensors, media switcher, and integrated status display.
Some applications include Glogging, Warwalking, and together, Moblogging. This means the ability to log notes, media, and leverage wireless access points for sharing them in a low-profile and low-power setup. All this can be walked around with while still having use of at least one hand available for manual tasks. While the analog A/V I/O capabilities are inherent to the PMA, this is the first project to make them all mobile. With its 30 GB HD, full
motion video, WiFi, and embedded Linux OS, the PMA has radical potential for [cyborg] Glogging. This is the first step towards accessing these and other functions in a more wearable, private way that protects the device from fumbles and helps to free a hand or two.
It is an experimental platform for communications, Glogging, memory augmentation, art, and teaching about Humanistic Intelligence (HI) and modular systems architecture. HI is a concept of Steve Mann's that helps me educate those who are afraid of Artificial Intelligence (AI) and feel that becoming a cyborg a priori diminishes humanity. It depends upon the system, and we are still in the homebrew stage of Wearable Computing. We can raise issues early before some monopoly releases devices that are easy-to-use because they dumb-down user-re-configurability. HI lets both the brain and computer do the types of processing each is best at, in a more
symbiotic arrangement. Like Professor Mann's, this project is amenable to education, experimentation, and activism.
I will present again at DorkBot Socal this summer, and look forward to working with people I’ve met online, at Dorkbot and neighbors for wearable computing designs with Archos models, HP clamshell organizers, Asus MyPal and Dell Axim X5xx PDAs.
[ Check out Wearaware's personal site at http://www.roboch.net, and keep a look out for more articles from him on igargoyle.com. He also has a site about his wearable here. You can contact him about his research at wearaware at yahoo dot com ]