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Antwerp, 1914: New Technology, Civilian Targets

Antwerp, 1914: New Technology, Civilian Targets

Reported in Scientific American—This Week in World War I: September 19, 1914 The Belgian field army retreated into the fortified city of Antwerp only 16 days after the Germans had invaded...

September 26, 2014 — Dan Schlenoff
A Photographic Survey of the American Yard

A Photographic Survey of the American Yard

Though it’s tempting to think you must spend thousands of dollars on equipment to take great photographs, Joshua White is helping prove that the best camera is the one you have on you when the inspiration strikes...

December 26, 2014 — Kalliopi Monoyios

Google's Top Searches of 2014

Americans looked to Google for information on Ebola, the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge and the actor Robin Williams’s suicide this year—all of which ranked among the hottest search terms of 2014...

December 16, 2014 — Amy Nordrum
First Flexible Airplane Wing Takes Flight

First Flexible Airplane Wing Takes Flight

In our May 2014 issue, Sridhar Kota, a professor of engineering at the University of Michigan and founder and president of the company FlexSys, published an article about his long-running campaign to take complex, multipart machines and redesign them as flexible, one-piece devices (subscription required)...

December 12, 2014 — Seth Fletcher

NASA's Dawn Mission Captures New Image of Dwarf Planet Ceres

NASA’s Dawn mission, having performed remarkably at the asteroid Vesta, is homing in on Ceres. The spacecraft’s ion engines will bring it to a capture orbit around this 590 mile diameter dwarf planet on March 6th, 2015 – at a distance some 2.5 times further from the Sun than the Earth...

January 20, 2015 — Caleb A. Scharf

Curved TV and Smartphones: Gimmick or Gadget Godsend?

Moviegoers have long been familiar with the benefits of viewing content on a curved screen. The screen's curvature equalizes the distance that light from the projector must travel, enhancing resolution and brightness while eliminating distortion...

January 8, 2015 — Larry Greenemeier
Software: The Next Challenge for Grid Batteries

Software: The Next Challenge for Grid Batteries

It seems like every day we hear about another incremental breakthrough in battery technology. By tweaking existing battery chemistries or inventing new chemistries altogether, university researchers and startup companies have managed to increase the energy density, cycle life, energy efficiency, and safety of numerous potential grid battery technologies...

January 6, 2015 — Robert Fares
Paintings under an iPhone Olloclip

Paintings under an iPhone Olloclip

I can’t help myself. I take a lot of pictures using my macro lenses on my Olloclip for iPhone. Leaves, snow, thistles and teasels, rocks and skin.

December 31, 2014 — Glendon Mellow

If you wish to make a gene from scratch

According to the New York Times, synthetic biology is creating DNA out of thin air. A recent article about synthetic biology and consumer goods describes DNA synthesis as a process where “DNA is created on computers and inserted into organisms.” Computers are pretty cool and really useful in synthetic biology labs, but it takes a [...]..

June 14, 2014 — Christina Agapakis

Exoplanet Size: It’s Elementary

Since quite early in the history of the discovery of planets around other stars it’s been apparent that the likelihood of certain types of planets around a star is related to the abundance of heavy elements in that system...

June 3, 2014 — Caleb A. Scharf

Brain-Inspired Computing Reaches a New Milestone

For the past few years, tech companies and academic researchers have been trying to build so-called neuromorphic computer architectures—chips that mimic the human brain's ability to be both analytical and intuitive in order to deliver context and meaning to large amounts of data...

August 7, 2014 — Larry Greenemeier
The Water Intake Crib: A Primer

The Water Intake Crib: A Primer

So Toledo and environs goes through a terrible water crisis when nutrient-rich water from farms, lawns, and other nonpoint sources flows into Lake Erie.

August 5, 2014 — Scott Huler
Cool Sh*t I’ve Been Reading This Summer

Cool Sh*t I’ve Been Reading This Summer

I’m on vacation, in an island paradise, and I’m sorely tempted to skip my end-of-the-month “Cool Sh*t” post. I want to just hang out on the beach and watch the waves roll in...

July 31, 2014 — John Horgan
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Dwindling Supply. Increasing Demand.

Dwindling Supply. Increasing Demand.

Solving the Water Crisis