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Thread: Weird Tech News

  1. #1
    Member
    Registered: Jun 2007
    Location: New Zealand

    Weird Tech News

    Just about couldn't believe this when I read it - remote controlled cockroaches:
    https://www.stuff.co.nz/technology/3...ioactive-zones

    Come on back with any other weird & wonderful tech stuff

  2. #2
    Member
    Registered: Feb 2002
    Location: In the flesh.
    Guaranteed to be the first spy gadget to get stepped on.

  3. #3
    Member
    Registered: Aug 2009
    Location: thiefgold.com
    https://www.odditycentral.com/funny/...g-machine.html

    Lays, the world’s bestselling potato chip brand, recently launched a limited edition miniature washing machine for oily fingertips.

    Let’s face it, there are few things in the world more addictive than potato chips, but if there’s one thing everyone hates about them – apart from getting us fat – it’s the grease they leave on our fingertips. You need to have napkins on hand, lick your fingertips (yuck!), or get up from that comfortable sofa and wash up when you’re done stuffing your face. Well, thanks to a rather ingenious marketing campaign, potato chip enthusiasts now have another option – a miniature washing machine designed specifically to clean oily fingertips.

  4. #4
    Member
    Registered: Aug 2002
    Location: Point Nemo
    I'm onboard with R/C cockroaches if they can fetch snacks.

  5. #5
    Member
    Registered: Dec 2020
    Quote Originally Posted by mxleader View Post
    I'm onboard with R/C cockroaches if they can fetch snacks.
    Combine that with the cockroach milk idea ... uh, maybe not.

  6. #6
    Member
    Registered: Dec 2001
    Location: Marlboro, MA, USA
    Straight out of 5th Element!
    The Keep for Thief 1 and 2 FMs, Shadowdark for Thief 3 and Dark Mod FMs

  7. #7
    Member
    Registered: Dec 2020
    https://www.theguardian.com/environm...tists-discover

    Enzymes that rapidly break down plastic bags have been discovered in the saliva of wax worms, which are moth larvae that infest beehives.

    The enzymes are the first reported to break down polyethylene within hours at room temperature and could lead to cost-effective ways of recycling the plastic.

    The discovery came after one scientist, an amateur beekeeper, cleaned out an infested hive and found the larvae started eating holes in a plastic refuse bag. The researchers said the study showed insect saliva may be “a depository of degrading enzymes which could revolutionise [the cleanup of polluting waste]”.

    Polyethylene makes up 30% of all plastic production and is used in bags and other packaging that make up a significant part of worldwide plastic pollution. The only recycling at scale today uses mechanical processes and creates lower-value products.

    Chemical breakdown could create valuable chemicals or, with some further processing, new plastic, thereby avoiding the need for new virgin plastic made from oil. The enzymes can be easily synthesised and overcome a bottleneck in plastic degradation, the researchers said, which is the initial breaking of the polymer chains. That usually requires a lot of heating, but the enzymes work at normal temperatures, in water and at neutral pH.

    “My beehives were plagued with wax worms, so I started cleaning them, putting the worms in a plastic bag,” said Dr Federica Bertocchini, at the Biological Research Centre in Madrid. “After a while, I noticed lots of holes and we found it wasn’t only chewing, it was [chemical breakdown], so that was the beginning of the story.”

  8. #8
    Moderator
    Registered: Jan 2003
    Location: NeoTokyo
    I can just imagine what the remote controlled animal scene will look like within a few decades. A pack of police dogs wearing uniforms and electronic skull caps stopping you on the street and barking orders at you. Panda greeters and guides at zoos. Grizzly bear soldiers in body armor on the battlefield. Fairy tale movies with live action animals playing their parts. Assassin R/C flies covertly buzzing towards their prey.

    I don't know how much I like this timeline.

  9. #9
    New Member
    Registered: Sep 2022
    Never heard of the Emerald cockroach wasp?.

  10. #10
    Member
    Registered: Dec 2006
    Location: Berghem Haven
    It's just Wolfenstein!

  11. #11
    Member
    Registered: Jun 2003
    Location: Darmstadt, Germany
    Coming full circle to the first post in this thread, Scientists Create AI-Powered Laser Turret That Kills Cockroaches!


  12. #12
    Member
    Registered: Aug 2004
    Ah. An open-source AI-aimed lethal laser turret. No way that goes wrong. They don't yet look like the SS2 turrets, but give it time!

  13. #13
    Member
    Registered: Aug 2009
    Location: thiefgold.com
    https://www.odditycentral.com/news/u...y-shields.html

    Inspired by Harry Potter’s iconic invisibility cloak, these real-life invisibility shields can make anyone who hides behind them disappear into thin air.

    Invisibility Shield Co. is a UK-based startup that has been working on an affordable invisibility mechanism for over two years. The company recently revealed a line of invisibility shields that rely on surprisingly simple technology to make users invisible to the naked eye. Apparently, the shield uses a “precision-engineered lens array” to deflect light from the subject sitting behind the shield away from the observer. The lenses are oriented vertically to allow light from the subject to diffuse when it passes through the shield. The light from the subject’s background is refracted towards the observer who cannot see the subject hiding behind the shield.

    "From the observer’s perspective, this background light is effectively smeared horizontally across the front face of the shield, over the area where the subject would ordinarily be seen,” the company shared.

    The team behind the project reportedly tested a variety of lens shapes, angles, and depths, and ultimately settled on a variant that doesn’t require toxic resins that are usually used in such designs. Also, the shield relies solely on optics, requiring no power source to produce its magic. Despite being just over two inches thick, the shield weighs only nine pounds, which makes it fairly portable.

    Invisibility shields come in two sizes, the standard 3 x 2 feet, which can be yours for $394, and a smaller 12 x 8 inch version priced at $64, including international shipping.

    According to the project’s Kickstarter page, the invisibility shield works best when placed against uniform backgrounds such as foliage, grass, sand, and sky, but will also do the trick against buildings, rails or painted lines.

    Invisibility Shield Co. emphasizes that while its creations will shield a user from view, they will not protect them against any sort of attack, as it is made from a flexible and non-rigid material used for external signages.

    The UK-based startup claims to have already registered hundreds of pre-orders for its invisibility shield in a matter of days, and hopes to start deliveries by December of this year.

  14. #14
    Member
    Registered: Feb 2002
    Location: In the flesh.
    Wow. That is cool. It won't protect against an attack? Hell, just kevlar the other side, or your own body for that matter. Have a camera display on the users side and a whole army could encircle an enemy in broad daylight without being seen.
    Last edited by Tocky; 8th Oct 2022 at 23:50. Reason: I used a damn math term rather than the right word FS

  15. #15
    Member
    Registered: Aug 2004
    Well, as long as you're surrounding them in horizontally contiguous terrain, anyway.

  16. #16
    Member
    Registered: Feb 2002
    Location: In the flesh.
    As long as they are bunched together and you approach in a circle you are golden... until they throw up their shields and nobody can find anybody. I want a house made out of this stuff.

    Remember the suit in the latest Invisible Man movie? Getting closer to that all the time.

  17. #17
    Member
    Registered: Dec 2020
    Hmm, that stuff is basically not much different to frosted glass, except it only scatters light along one axis. So one way to understand this material is that it's like polarized frosted glass.

    Kinda neat, but I don't think that it's something you could leverage to get much more out of it.
    Last edited by Cipheron; 9th Oct 2022 at 21:35.

  18. #18
    Moderator
    Registered: Jan 2003
    Location: NeoTokyo
    You might not be able to see the person, but you can still see the glass. So it'd be most useful on a rainy, misty, or foggy day when it's already hard to see the glass itself. Or if you had a giant wall of it, you might know some people are behind it, but not how many or where they are. I also think it'd be most useful in cases where people aren't shooting projectiles at it.

    It might take a bit to think of what use case this would be most useful for. If you want to just hide people passing through it, you can already do that with a concrete wall too. Yeah, I guess coming into a place on a foggy day, where there's not a lot of tall grass (where they could just wear a grass suit and crawl in), it'd catch people by surprise.

  19. #19
    Member
    Registered: Dec 2020
    Well not really. Consider that the trick only works against horizontal striped backgrounds, the wall section also needs to be exactly parallel to the background you want it on, but that also suggests that the *viewpoint* this works from also needs to be parallel. All the camera angles have been carefully crafted to make it work like that. For example, they move the panel left and right a little, but at no point do they actually rotate the panel. I have a feeling the actual usable angle of view isn't that great here. Think crappy LCD screens which are totally dark from the wrong angle.

    Also saw this just now:

    https://www.independent.co.uk/tech/r...-b2146784.html



    It's a Russian robot dog with a rocket launcher on it from an arms expo. But people determined it's actually made from a Chinese toy robot dog costing 350, but the black cloth is apparently to hide the details.

    I guess they could send these to fight in Ukraine and then Ukraine ends up with an army of robot dogs.
    Last edited by Cipheron; 10th Oct 2022 at 06:53.

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