General News & Other Stuff
Solexant funded to print thin-film solar cells
General
Written by Daniel   
Friday, 04 June 2010 17:42

From C/Net News

Silicon Valley solar company Solexant has raised $41.5 million to pursue technology it says can slice the costs of solar power with a printing-like manufacturing process.

The company's technology, which was developed at Lawrence Berkeley National Lab, takes raw semiconductor material and creates nanoparticles which, once dissolved in a solvent, creates an ink which can be printed.

Read more...
 
Foxconn raising pay following rash of suicides
General
Written by Daniel   
Wednesday, 02 June 2010 18:14

From C/Net News

Following a rash worker suicides this year at a massive factory in China, Foxconn is giving employees a 30 percent pay raise.

Taiwan-based Foxconn, which manufacturers laptops, mobile devices, and other hardware for the likes of Apple, Hewlett-Packard, Dell, and Sony, announced Wednesday that the pay raise will take effect immediately at all of its factories in China.

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Willow Garage gets robots into researchers' hands
General
Written by Daniel   
Thursday, 27 May 2010 17:57

From C/Net News

MENLO PARK, California--If you've never seen 11 all-purpose robots doing a choreographed flag-waving dance--and really, who has?--Willow Garage was the place to be Wednesday night.

That's because Willow Garage, a developer of robotics hardware and software, threw a party to celebrate the "graduation" of 11 teams  from around the world, each of which has won the right to take possession for two years of one of Willow Garage's PR2 open-source robots and work on a series of innovative and unique research projects.

The idea is that each team, using the PR2 robots and Willow Garage's open-source Robot Operating System (ROS), will find its own uses for the platform and will share its work with the entire robotics community, allowing everyone involved to benefit from the research.

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Honda CR-Z sporty hybrid e-car
General
Written by Danrok   
Thursday, 27 May 2010 17:19

From Reg Hardware:

The three major Japanese car makers are taking a distinctly different approach to the imminent arrival of the electric car. Nissan has jumped in with both feet and will launch Leaf, its battery-powered e-car, at the end of the year. Toyota is putting its eggs in the true hybrid basket - its Prius is capable of both battery- and petrol-powered drive.

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Not just oil: US hit peak water in 1970 and nobody noticed
General
Written by Daniel   
Tuesday, 25 May 2010 18:18

From ArsTechnica

The concept of peak oil, where the inaccessibility of remaining deposits ensures that extraction rates start an irreversible decline, has been the subject of regular debate for decades. Although that argument still hasn't been settled—estimates range from the peak already having passed us to its arrival being 30 years in the future—having a better sense of when we're likely to hit it could prove invaluable when it comes to planning our energy economy. The general concept of peaking has also been valuable, as it applies to just about any finite resource. A new analysis suggests that it may be valuable to consider applying it to a renewable resource as well: the planet's water supply.

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BeBionic Unveils Bionic Hand That Would Make Even Luke Proud
General
Written by Daniel   
Monday, 24 May 2010 18:02

From Daily Tech

BeBionic's myo-electric hand features numerous improvements over past models, including being the world's first rotatable electronic prosthetic hand.  (Source: BeBionic)
The force is strong in this prosthetic

High tech bionics may one day provide vision to the blind and hearing to the deaf.  But among the most exciting prosthetics is the possibility of fully functional prosthetic limbs.

Read more...
 
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