Scope for sustainable technologies is huge

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Sustainable technology refers to that which caters to the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs. It enables more valuable use of natural resources and greatly reduced ecological impact among other technological benefits. Though sustainable technology deals with energy efficiency, reduction in pollution, use of renewable sources, it should also be economically sustainable too, saysAvinashMayekar.

The consumption of natural resources has increased exponentially in the past decades in rapidly industrialising countries and it is rather recently that we have started recognising the unpleasant consequences of the carefree attitude towards the environment.

The textiles industry is among the most essential consumer goods industry in the world, as it fulfils one of the basic needs of human beings. Today, the world of fashion is glamorous and stylish; however, its impact on ecology is worsening day-by-day. The textiles industry is condemned as being one of the most polluting industries in the world. Not only production, but even consumption of textiles produces waste. At every stage of textile production, vast amounts of energy, clean water and

See SpaceX’s Hyperloop Competition In Photos

Scenes from this weekend’s event at Texas A&M

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This past weekend, Austin-based reporter Priscila Mosqueda traveled an hour and a half to Texas A&M and capture the mood, excitement, and ground-breaking technology that would be unveiled at SpaceX’s Hyperloop pod competition.

In front of Elon Musk, who surprised those in attendance by appearing late in the festivities, a team of graduate students from MIT ultimately bested the other 120-plus teams.

Above are a handful of photos from the competition, including a few renderings of the MIT design, which now has the chance to test their pod and compete against 21 other teams this summer at the SpaceX’s one-mile Hyperloop test track near its headquarters in Hawthorne, California.

Take A Virtual Stroll Through Shakespeare’s London

Students in Florida have recreated the Bard’s world in immersive 3D

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If you’ve ever visited London’s Globe Theater–or seen pictures of it–and wondered what it must have been like in Shakespeare’s time, you no longer need a time machine. Florida International University in Miami has built a virtual-reality facility called the I-CAVE (Integrated Computer Augmented Virtual Environment), which will serve as a center for research in 3D modeling and new ways of presenting educational tools. And the first installment for I-CAVE is a virtual reality experience that recreates the Globe Theater as it would have appeared in 1598.

To do that, a team of architecture students first had to model the virtual environment based on historical drawings of the southern London region. Computer science students then turned those models into a textured, animated interactive experience. And finally, theater students added their voice acting expertise to the project.

Visitors to the I-CAVE will enter a room with giant,

Meet ‘Squishy Fingers’: Flexible Robot Advances Undersea Research

There’s a new soft and squishy robot in town, and it’s ready for some serious underwater business.

Meet “Squishy Fingers,” a new remotely operated vehicle designed to delicately grab and take samples of coral. The ROV, described in a Jan. 20 study in the journal Soft Robotics, will help researchers collect specimens from deep underwater reefs without damaging the corals’ fragile bodies.

“If we’re going to go down and study these systems, then we should be as gentle as we possibly can,” said study co-senior author David Gruber, an associate professor of biology at Baruch College in New York City and a National Geographic emerging explorer

Until now, coral researchers used clunky and rigid ROVs originally developed for the oil and gas industries. These vehicles’ stiff arms were made to do heavy work, such as turning pipes off and on, rather than plucking tiny organisms off a coral reef.

“These arms can generate lifting and gripping forces up to 500 lbs.-force [227 kilograms-force] and are not optimal for delicate specimen collection,” the researchers wrote in the study.

Enter soft robotics expert Robert Wood, study co-senior author and a professor of engineering and applied

Meet ‘Squishy Fingers’: Flexible Robot Advances Undersea Research

There’s a new soft and squishy robot in town, and it’s ready for some serious underwater business.

Meet “Squishy Fingers,” a new remotely operated vehicle designed to delicately grab and take samples of coral. The ROV, described in a Jan. 20 study in the journal Soft Robotics, will help researchers collect specimens from deep underwater reefs without damaging the corals’ fragile bodies.

“If we’re going to go down and study these systems, then we should be as gentle as we possibly can,” said study co-senior author David Gruber, an associate professor of biology at Baruch College in New York City and a National Geographic emerging explorer

Until now, coral researchers used clunky and rigid ROVs originally developed for the oil and gas industries. These vehicles’ stiff arms were made to do heavy work, such as turning pipes off and on, rather than plucking tiny organisms off a coral reef.

“These arms can generate lifting and gripping forces up to 500 lbs.-force [227 kilograms-force] and are not optimal for delicate specimen collection,” the researchers wrote in the study.

Enter soft robotics expert Robert Wood, study co-senior author and a professor of engineering and applied

In Images: Drones Take Flight in Antarctica and the Arctic

Aerial drones are seemingly everywhere these days —even in Antarctica. But only on highly regulated missions conducted by scientists who hold pilot certification reflecting months of training. Guy Williams, a polar oceanographer at the Institute for Marine and Antarctic Studies at the University of Tasmania in Australia, trained for months before he received pilot certification and permission to test several models of aerial drones in polar environments, capturing images that scientists will use to develop satellite tools for mapping changes in sea ice. [Read full story about how drones are being used in some of the most remote locations]

Testing the DJI Phantom 2 Vision+ aerial drone from the deck of the research vehicle Nathaniel B. Palmer, in Antarctica. This quadcopter was one of two drone models that polar oceanographer Guy Williams brought on the voyage as part of a pilot program to determine whether the drones could be operated safely in polar environments. (Credit: Guy Williams/Alex Fraser/Eva Cougnon, Courtesy of the U.S. Antarctic Program and National Science Foundation)

Sky and sea

An aerial view of the research vehicle. Winds presented a particular challenge to the researchers, and were often too strong for them to

1Can 3D Scans Save Cultural Sites From War?

This article was originally published at The Conversation. The publication contributed the article to Live Science’s Expert Voices: Op-Ed & Insights.

In March 2001, the Taliban blew up the BamiyanBuddhas in Afghanistan, two of the tallest Buddha sculptures in the world. This horrific attack on an important and beautiful example of the patrimony of central Asia shocked the world. It also forever changed the landscape of cultural preservation, archaeology and global heritage.

Even back then, we had some of the 3D scanning technologies that could have allowed us to digitally document and preserve the Buddhas. We did not yet anticipate the scale of destruction that would leave hundreds of global heritage sites damaged or obliterated in the 15 years since that event.

The loss of this cultural heritage has spurred teams of researchers and nonprofit organizations to race to make 3D scans, architectural plans and detailed photographic records of heritage sites around the world, knowing they could be destroyed at any time. Advances in 3D scanning technologies, drone use and even tourists’ online posting of images are giving preservationists a new set of tools to prevent the permanent loss of cultural artifacts.

The preservation race

Energy Evolves as 4th Industrial Revolution Looks to Nature (Op-Ed)

Lynn Scarlett is global managing director for policy at The Nature Conservancy. She contributed this article to Live Science’s Expert Voices: Op-Ed & Insights.

In Davos, Switzerland, at the 2016 World Economic Forum annual meeting, industry leaders focused on what they call the Fourth Industrial Revolution. Whereas the First Industrial Revolution used steam and waterpower in manufacturing, the second used electricity to power factories, allowing production on a much larger scale. The Third Industrial Revolution introduced sophisticated technology and automation, which has touched every aspect of people’s lives. The Fourth Industrial Revolution promises to do even more.

Eying these advances, Klaus Schwab, executive chairman of the forum, said he perceives the “brink of a technological revolution that will fundamentally alter the way we live, work and relate to one another.” In their scope, scale and complexity, these changes will be “unlike anything humankind has experienced before,” which will transform “entire systems of production, management and governance,” he said.

Nature as a cost-effective water filter

Water filtration is a perfect example. New York City pays landowners in the Catskills watershed to implement land-use practices that benefit water quality for the city downstream and is billions

US Military’s F-35 Fighter Jets to Make British Debut

The U.S. military’s next-generation F-35 fighter jets will make their long-awaited overseas debut this summer at two air shows in the United Kingdom, Air Force officials recently announced.

The 56th Fighter Wing, stationed at Luke Air Force Base in Arizona, will showcase F-35A Lightning IIs at the Royal International Air Tattoo in Gloucestershire and the Farnborough International Airshow in Hampshire, both in July.

The summer events will be the first time the F-35s cross the Atlantic Ocean for the overseas air shows

We’re very excited about demonstrating this capability to the world,” Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. Mark A. Welsh III, said in a statement. “The F-35 represents a new way of thinking about data integration, weapons and tactics. We’re thrilled to highlight the program and the amazing Airmen who support this cutting-edge fighter.”

The F-35 Joint Strike Fighter is billed as the most advanced warplane of its type yet developed, but the program has been plagued with delays and cost overruns. In July 2014, the U.S. military canceled what would have been the F-35’s international air show debut after one of the planes suffered an engine fire. The United States’ entire fleet

Robots That Could Decompose When They’re No Longer Needed

Scientists at the Italian Institute of Technology (IIT) are developing materials that could allow robots to decompose at the end of their lives, much like humans, according to Reuters.

Most robots are made of plastic and metal, which are non-biodegradable. But researchers at the the IIT’s Smart Materials Group have developed a way to create a bioplastic out of food waste. This material could eventually be used to make an entirely biodegradable robot.

AthanassiaAthanassiou, who leads the Smart Materials Lab at the IIT, says that the bioplastic can be flexible or tough, so it could be used for both robot ‘skin’ and interior robot parts.

“It will help us to make lighter robots, more efficient, and finally, also recyclable,” says Nikos Tsagarakis, senior researcher at the IIT.

A robot capable of decomposition could make certain jobs much simpler. As robotics Professor Jonathan Rossiter at the University of Bristol stated in 2012, “Once a biodegradable robot has reached the end of its mission, for example having performed some environmental cleanup activity following an oil spill, it will decompose into harmless material.”

Athanassiou says that creating a completely biodegradable robot could be possible in a

Facebook Now Lets You Broadcast Your Own Live Streaming Video

Live video on Facebook

Facebook announced three big new features today for its mobile app: live streaming, photo and video montages called “Collages, and a new dropdown menu for updating your status. The features are initially restricted to iPhone users in the U.S., but will eventually come to Android users as well. Facebook also appears to be testing a new concert ticket purchasing feature in San Francisco, but that isn’t widely available yet. Here’s a rundown

Facebook

Live video on Facebook

Facebook announced three big new features today for its mobile app: live streaming, photo and video montages called “Collages, and a new dropdown menu for updating your status. The features are initially restricted to iPhone users in the U.S., but will eventually come to Android users as well. Facebook also appears to be testing a new concert ticket purchasing feature in San Francisco, but that isn’t widely available yet. Here’s a

You Can Now Periscope Straight From Your GoPro Camera

The live-streaming video app Periscope is cool, there’s no doubt about it. But it can be frustrating to broadcast something amazing and know your viewers can’t fully experience it because of the quality of your phone’s camera. That’s all about to change today, with the announcement that owners of the WiFi-enbaled GoPro Hero 4 camera will be able to stream video to the Periscope app on their phones, directly from their separate GoPro cameras.

Much like Periscope’s last update, which saw streams embed directly into tweets, GoPro streaming is only available on iOS devices for now. But it will eventually be coming to Android users as well.

In order to use the new capability, simply update to the latest version of Periscope on iOS and link it to your GoPro. Once linked, you’ll be able to select your GoPro as a camera option.

The partnership, announced today, has come at a time when Twitter, which owns Periscope, could use a major boost of good press and user engagement. In recent days, it was reported that several top executives are leaving Twitter, and the company’s stock hit at an all-time low in the wake of

The Legacy Of Marvin Minsky, Who Helped Found Artificial Intelligence

In 1955, in a small room at Dartmouth University, four scientists proposed that if 10 researchers dedicated a summer to building machines that could learn, they could make a considerable dent in a new field, which they called “artificial intelligence.”

Marvin Minsky, who passed away at age 88 on Sunday evening, was one of those four researchers. In the 60 years since then, the industries of computer science and machine learning have grown tremendously.

Minsky proceeded to found MIT’s Artificial Intelligence Laboratory, which is still a hub of A.I. research. There, he is remembered for not only his life’s achievements and diversions, which span building the first neural network simulator and advising on the movie 2001: A Space Odyssey, but his vision for what artificial intelligence should be.

Joscha Bach, an MIT professor who worked with Minsky over the last year, wrote to Popular Science that Minsky was a great thinker not only in computer science and mathematics, but in how we understand the mind. Minsky’s research was a computational application of the theory of the human mind.

Marvin Minsky did not think that minds are governed by a simple general principle, like neural learning, or

Why Trump’s Idea To Move Apple Product Manufacturing To The U.S. Makes No Sense

Real estate tycoon turned entertainer turned Republican Presidential candidate Donald Trump recently gave a speech saying, among other things, he wants to force Apple to make its products in the U.S. instead of “other countries

As Trump put it: “We’re going to get Apple to build their damn computers and things in this country instead of other countries.”

Perhaps this sounds like a not terrible idea to you.

Except that no one country — not even China — makes all of the components of Apple’s leading products, they just assemble them. And the U.S. has neither the factory space nor the trained workforce to handle construction of Apple’s most popular product, the iPhone, in the immediate future.

And if they did, it would add cost to an already expensive device. And all of that would be done for significantly fewer jobs, because American labor is expensive.

That’s probably one big factor why the only major Apple product that is currently made and assembled mostly in the U.S. is the Mac Pro computer, which starts at $2,999.

With apologies to anyone who’s still on board then, Trump’s statement about bringing Apple’s production to

Facebook’s New Reactions Are Coming To The U.S. ‘In The Next Few Weeks

Last year in October, Facebook’s chief product officer Chris Cox announced the social network was finally bringing users a “dislike” button — except, not strictly a dislike button.

Instead, Cox announced the company was testing a new feature called “Reactions”, an expansion of the “Like” button that allows users to post six new animated emoji-like faces where the Like button is today, expressing other emotions, including finally “Sad” and “Angry.”

Reactions were originally only being tested in only Ireland and Spain, but as of writing this four other countries are now also testing them, including Japan, which got the feature on January 13th.

In a lengthy new article on the feature by Bloomberg, Cox said that Reactions will be coming to the U.S. (and the rest of the world) “in a few weeks,” but wouldn’t give an exact date. “We roll things out very carefully,” he told Bloomberg. “And that comes from a lot of lessons learned.”

Cox did, however, discuss how and when the new feature was being used. According to him, Reactions were most used after the terrorist attacks in Paris and he said “It just felt different to use Facebook that

Sweat Sensors Track Athletes’ Health

You might not know it, but your sweat is pretty valuable. The varying chemical concentrations in sweat reveal your blood sugar level, whether you’re dehydrated, or if your blood is not pumping fast enough to a particular tissue. Now a team of researchers led by scientists at the University of California, Berkeley has developed a Fitbit-like device that can detect and track the molecular components of sweat, according to a study published today in Nature. Devices like these could help doctors and fitness aficionados track multiple variables of athletes’ health, and could someday provide a non-invasive test for medical professionals working to diagnose disease.

Though sweat is mostly water, it also contains dissolved chemicals and minerals that can give scientists some insight into what is going on inside the body. The researchers designed their sensor to detect sodium, potassium, glucose, and lactate from sweat. Sodium and potassium concentrations can show if a person is dehydrated, lactate concentrations reveal muscle fatigue, and glucose levels in sweat correlate to glucose levels in the blood, which affect an athlete’s energy level and alertness. The researchers created a small plastic biosensor to pick up on these chemical concentrations But the

An Ancient Board Game Sparks New Rivalry Between Google and Facebook

When IBM’s Deep Blue computer beat chess grandmaster Garry Kasparov, the world noticed. Machine had bested man, in a game of man’s own design. The rules for what machines could do had changed

But now, moments like that (which Popular Science dubbed the “checkmate heard ’round the world” in 1997), are fewer and farther between. In a dichotomous world where artificial intelligence is either slowly improved in the open, like virtual personal assistants, or tweaked on the server-level to provide better customized content or facial recognition, these benchmark moments are usually more ambiguous.

Today (and late last night) two companies highly-invested in artificial intelligence are both trying to lay claim to the same benchmark, beating human players at the ancient Chinese game of Go.

In the last 24 hours, both Google DeepMind and Facebook’s AI Research lab have announced that their algorithms can perform at extremely high levels of competition. Google has a much more formal lead on this announcement, with a publication in Nature and real-life scenario in October where the computer, named AlphaGo, beat reigning European Go champion Fan Hui. Facebook’s software placed third in a monthly bot tournament held by online Go

Arctic Report: Inside An Icebreaker Ship

As I board the Norwegian Coast Guard’s icebreaking ship the KV Svalbard, officers greet me with salutes. I’m not sure if I’m supposed to salute back, or if that would be impolite, so I just say hello (or the Norwegian “hei hei,” to be more specific). The officers crack a smile in reply.

Our group of international journalists gathers in the hangar to kick off the Arctic Frontiers conference—a meeting on industry and the environment in the Arctic. Tonight we’re taking a tour of the island of Tromsøya, on which much of the municipality of Tromsø sits. As a gentle snow starts falling, the boat pulls out, glides below a bridge, and passes by the glow of an Arctic cathedral.

How These Ships Work

These ships have long served to keep shipping transport routes open in the Arctic. In the mid 1800s, they were powered by steam. In the 1930s, they transitioned to diesel, and in the 1950s, diesel-electric. Today, Russia even has a few nuclear-powered icebreakers. This is what it does:

  1. Extremely powerful engines propel the ship on top of the ice.
  2. The massive ship’s weight allows it to break through ice up to

This 3D Printed Flower Responds To Its Environment

With the help of a special ink, researchers have created 3D printed flowers that change shape when they’re immersed in water, mimicking a plant’s ability to respond to its environment They call the method 4D printing, due to the addition of the fourth dimension of time. Although researchers have achieved 4D printing in the past, this team is unique in printing objects in one step using a single material.

We were inspired by plants,” Sydney Gladman, co-lead author of the study, told Popular Science. “Pinecones, when they are wet, they’re closed up, protecting the seed, but when they fall off the tree, they dry out and open up, exposing the seed… all we had to do was design an ink that could express this behavior.”

They did so by creating an ink made from hydrogel and cellulose, a major component of the cell walls in many plants. The hydrogel swells when submerged in water, which allows the printed flowers to move and change shape. The researchers also developed a mathematical model that predicts the way the printed flowers will move once submerged. This allows them to control the shape the object takes on by manipulating the

Google’s Project SkyBender Is Another Internet-Firing Drone

It seems if you control a large portion of the internet, you have vested interest in getting the internet to more people. Both Facebook and Google have been testing aerial devices that would be able to provide reliable wireless internet access in remote locations. Until now, Facebook had Aquila, its solar-powered drone armed with Wi-Fi lasers, and Google had Project Loon, huge balloons with transmitters. Both are supposed to literally beam internet from the sky, but both have been confined to limited tests so far

And now it seems Google has had other tricks up its sleeves to accomplish this goal, according to a new report by The Guardian. The search giant is reportedly testing multiple solar powered drones, and has been since last summer in a remote New Mexico airspace called the Spaceport Authority, according to the Guardian‘s sources. The space was originally meant to house Virgin Galactic aircraft.

The technology allegedly used in the devices is not the cell service used by everyday people — at least, not yet. Google is testing 5G wireless internet, which could transmit more than 40 times faster than our 4G LTE service. However, at the reported transmission frequency,

Google Has 7 Products With 1 Billion Users

Google’s Gmail has surpassed a billion users. The search company’s Chief Executive Officer Sundar Pichai announced the milestone during the Google/Alphabet earnings call this afternoon. This marks the seventh Google property to reach the milestone. Gmail follows in the footsteps of Android, Chrome, Maps, Search, Youtube and the Google Play Store in reaching over one billion people.

Google

Google parent-company Alphabet

Gmail now has over 1 billion users. And this isn’t Google’s first product with this many users

Google’s Gmail has surpassed a billion users. The search company’s Chief Executive Officer Sundar Pichai announced the milestone during the Google/Alphabet earnings call this afternoon. This marks the seventh Google property to reach the milestone. Gmail follows in the footsteps of Android, Chrome, Maps, Search, Youtube and the Google Play Store in reaching over one billion people.

The email service that was released in April 2004 was among the first to offer large storage space for users and robust searching across your inbox.

While Google products like Buzz, Wave, and Plus ended up duds that didn’t see much success, Gmail saw large adoption, even when was the service was invite-only (as it was to