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New jet-powered UAV is the future of asymmetrical warfare

March 5, 2014 8:09 am | by Jason Lomberg, Technical Editor | Comments

While politicians and privacy advocates squabble over regulations for domestic drones, General Atomics has been hard at work developing the next unmanned terror of the skies for America’s foreign adversaries. Meet the Predator C Avenger, the future of asymmetrical warfare.

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Watch kids react to rotary phones

March 4, 2014 10:52 am | by Jason Lomberg, Technical Editor | Comments

Watching kids befuddled by legacy technology is like shooting fish in a barrel — easy, but oddly enjoyable. And the “Kids React” series on YouTube runs with that premise, and one of their latest subjects — rotary phones — will make even 30-something college grads feel old.

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This is what happens when you put a go-pro on a pelican’s beak

March 4, 2014 7:53 am | by Kasey Panetta, Managing Editor | Comments

There have been some insane advances in the technology behind video cameras in the past few years. Video cameras have caught onto the miniaturization trend, but as the size shrinks, the capabilities grow. This means lighter cameras that are able to shoot and store videos with high-quality images.

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Airport lights are watching you

March 3, 2014 8:00 am | by Allegra Sparta, Contributor | Comments

Because I needed another reason to be skeptical of flying.... The newly installed LED lights in Terminal B of Newark Liberty International Airport in New Jersey don’t just provide clean, bright light for people waiting to catch their flights. They’re part of another installment in the “things that watch us without our knowledge” saga....

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7 things I’ll need for my house in 2025

March 3, 2014 7:47 am | by Kasey Panetta, Managing Editor | Comments

I can’t wait to live in GE’s home of the future. (Last week, I talked about the car I must have, so it seems fitting that my next topic be about my dream house. As with the car, this is assuming an unlimited budget and available technology.) Last week, I headed to Allentown, PA to the Da Vinci Science Center in order to see an exhibit called Home 2025.

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Electric drive vehicles don’t reduce emissions

February 28, 2014 9:26 am | by Chris Fox, PD&D Managing Editor | Comments

A study was recently released by North Carolina State University that provides evidence supporting the fact that electric drive vehicles (EDVs) have little impact on reducing emissions. As an engineering audience that knows efficiency when they see it, most PD&D readers will throw their hands in the air having known this for some time.

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0.4mm Pitch BGA is Awesome

February 27, 2014 11:39 am | by Screaming Circuits | Comments

I recently had a conversation with a friend about 0.4mm pitch BGAs. The specific part is the Freescale KL03 ARM Coretex-M0+ microcontroller in a 1.6mm x 2mm, 04.mm pitch package. That's a 20 ball wafer scale BGA form factor. I...

Hotel smartphone "keys" are a horrible idea

February 27, 2014 8:53 am | by Stephanie Carmichael, Contributor | Comments

One forward-thinking hotel chain wants to replace those easy-to-lose, plastic room keys with a smartphone app. It’s a horrible idea. OK, let’s back up. That chain is Starwood Hotels & Resorts, which is one of the savvier hotel options out there. Starwood is smart about making the most of new and popular technology.

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Tiny camera sees for the blind

February 26, 2014 2:19 pm | by Melissa Fassbender, PD&D Associate Editor | Comments

We have the hardware and software capabilities to develop devices that are approaching the same level as human vision. The devices can recognize objects, scenarios, and context. According to Erez Na'aman, OrCam Technologies vice president of engineering and business development, OrCam took this technology in hand....

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Five messengers beyond WhatsApp

February 26, 2014 8:34 am | by Daniele DeAngelis Walker, Editorial Intern | Comments

Facebook’s recent acquisition of WhatsApp has the technology world abuzz about messaging apps. This begs some questions: What are some other messaging apps? What makes them special? And, with standard texting and calling already built into most cell phones, what exactly can fancy messaging apps do for you? 

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Teddy bears or touchscreens? Playthings of the digital age

February 26, 2014 7:26 am | by Daniele DeAngelis Walker, Editorial Intern | Comments

Kids these days play more with tablets and touchscreens than traditional toys, according to a recent survey. The same survey shows this trend is poised to continue— could tech replace toys altogether? The Michael Cohen Group (MCG), child education specialists...

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Wearable technology: 6 effects you never thought of

February 26, 2014 7:11 am | by Daniele DeAngelis Walker, Editorial Intern | Comments

We know that wearables will transform our lives, but how? Giving tech access to workers who can't use handheld devices, living healthier lives, boosting retail shopping and sales, protecting employees, enabling cheating on tests, and revolutionizing both solving and committing crime.

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We don't need "smart" gun control

February 26, 2014 7:01 am | by Jason Lomberg, Technical Editor | Comments

The nation is about to mediate a very serious gun control debate, and it has nothing to do with “assault weapons.” Rather, the advent of “smart” guns could bring about the mandated obsolescence of “dumb” firearms. Sen. Edward Markey (D-MA) has introduced legislation that would mandate all new guns be “personalized”....

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Lazy kids play with lazy toys

February 26, 2014 6:37 am | by Chris Fox, PD&D Managing Editor | Comments

Hasbro recently announced that it was revamping the Transformer product line. As the popular shape-shifters approach their 30-year anniversary, and will star in yet another movie, the company has enlisted a design and engineering team for an overhaul.

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Answering the reshoring question

February 25, 2014 11:08 am | by Pramod Gupta, Aakash Gupta, Hector Gutierrez, and Patrick Van den Bossche, A.T. Kearney | Comments

The U.S. has become a more attractive destination for manufacturing over the last few years. That’s a fact. And several U.S. companies are indeed bringing back their manufacturing operations. Several others are asking the question: “Should we reshore our activities as well?”

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