Not every design needs scads of high tech materials to make it worthwhile. Sometimes the simple ideas are the best. If you’ve ever needed a flashlight, only to find the batteries haven’t been changed in months or years, you might appreciate the subtle genius of a flashlight powered by your hands alone.
Ann Makosinski, a 15-year-old student at St. Michaels University School in Victoria, Canada has developed just such a flashlight for Google’s Science Fair. She is among 15 finalists selected from entries that span more than 120 countries around the world. The finalists will visit the Google campus in Mountain View, CA, in September for the prize ceremony. Continue reading
The internet is the very definition of a transformative technology. It’s exploded into a sprawling labyrinth of information, shopping and entertainment that alternately boosts or drains productivity. For every cat video someone shares on Facebook, there’s a TED Talk or a file transferred via the cloud.
Google wants to bring the internet to as many users as possible, so it has been investigating ways of providing access to people across the globe. Part of the challenge involved with that goal is providing access to users in places where terrain or circumstance have prevented a developed infrastructure. The potential solution Google has unveiled is called Project Loon, and uses balloons to form a network. Continue reading
In March, Engineering on the Edge covered Lockheed Martin’s investment into the D-Wave quantum computer. At the time, although Lockheed Martin seemed impressed with the system, the verdict was still out on how much faster (if at all) D-Wave’s machine was compared to conventional computers.
Since then, an independent study has confirmed that the quantum computer is as fast, or faster, than other computers. Google and NASA were intrigued enough by the results to partner in order to start an artificial intelligence (AI) lab at NASA’s Advanced Supercomputing Facility at the Ames Research Center in Silicon Valley. Continue reading
Most of the mobile technology being developed today can fit in a pocket, or at the very least in a briefcase, but that doesn’t make remembering to take it with you any easier. I know either my wife or myself has to make a trip back into the house to fetch a forgotten cell phone or iPod at least once a week.
Flexible technology won’t make remembering to bring your tech with you any easier, as I know plenty of people who forget to put on their watch, let alone a flexible phone. Wearable technology, though, might be a different story. How many times do you forget to put on a shirt before leaving the house? Continue reading
In a recent interview with Singularity Hub, inventor and new Google Director of Engineering Ray Kurzweil dished on his latest pet project: a way to leverage Google’s resources to create intelligent computers that can understand human language on a “deep level.” Doing so would enable the company to create a type of artificial intelligence that would greatly improve search engines.