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Watch this chainsaw-powered machine gun destroy its target

April 6, 2015 11:38 am | by Jason Lomberg, Digital Editor, @JasonECNMag | Blogs | Comments

Joerg Sprave is the mad genius of do-it-yourself slingshots. The German businessman spends his free time designing absurd, slightly impractical weapons like the machete slingshot and the granddaddy of all absurdities, a chainsaw launcher. His latest ...

Amazon's newest service will change your life (Maybe.)

April 6, 2015 8:14 am | by Kasey Panetta, Editor, @kcpanetta | Blogs | Comments

Restocking your pantry might soon be as easy as pressing a button. Seriously, push the button and presto, chango, your favorite toilet paper arrives in the mail. Amazon's newest release is the Amazon Dash button.

Engineering Newswire: Robot takes a pounding in dodgeball barrage

April 2, 2015 12:07 pm | by David Mantey, Melisa Fassbender, Kaylie Duffy | Videos | Comments

The bipedal ATRIAS robot can hand the assault like a pro without stopping or falling over. Developed at Oregon State University’s Dynamic Robotics Laboratory, the ATRIAS design is based around two pogo-stick like legs that provide the robot ...

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Showcasing an electric motorcycle at the world's most dangerous race

April 2, 2015 12:06 pm | by Kasey Panetta, Editor, @kcpanetta | Blogs | Comments

Meet Polina Brodsky,Technical Coordinator, Buckeye Current Racing: Electric motorcycle at Ohio State. She was part of the team that has showcased electric motorcycles at the Isle of Man racing competition....

Keeping engineers better informed: Setting ECN apart from the competition

April 2, 2015 10:59 am | by David Mantey, Editorial Director, Design Group, @djamesmanny | Blogs | Comments

I wanted to reach out and share some of the new things that we’re doing in Advantage Business Media’s Design Engineering Group to make sure that you are the industry’s most informed design engineers at every stage of the development process....

This inappropriate card game will fund STEM scholarships for women (and why that's amazing)

April 2, 2015 7:53 am | by Kasey Panetta, Editor, @kcpanetta | Blogs | Comments

It seems like everyone is trying to figure out how to get kids in STEM and how to keep them there. There is a particular interest in increasing the number of women in STEM professions...

Engineering Update #104: Amazon drones leaving America

April 1, 2015 4:09 pm | by Jon Dipierro, Kasey Panetta, Jason Lomberg, & Janine E. Mooney | Videos | Comments

With the ink still drying on the FAAs newest drone regulations, which include requiring the pilots to be licensed and the drones to always be in line sight of the pilot and a spotter, Amazon has taken off for the Great White North. And they’re taking their drones with them....

Marine Corps’ robotic war balls could aid amphibious landings

April 1, 2015 12:19 pm | by Jason Lomberg, Digital Editor, @JasonECNMag | Blogs | Comments

Since 1775, the United States Marines Corps has been the foremost authority on amphibious warfare, and they’ve perfected the art of establishing beachheads on hostile shores. An amphibious drone from Guardbot Inc. could aid these complex military maneuvers....

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This drone can do your taxes for you

April 1, 2015 10:31 am | by Jason Lomberg, Digital Editor, @JasonECNMag | Blogs | Comments

Tax preparation might seem like an odd task for a 5,000 lb soulless automaton, but then, the Taxbot is a joint venture of the IRS....

How IoT will affect telecom

April 1, 2015 8:29 am | by Robert S. Fish, PhD., Vice President, Standards Activities, IEEE Communications Society, Member-at-Large, IEEE Standards Association Board of Governors, President, Netovations, LLC | Blogs | Comments

So many open questions swirl around the notion of an Internet of Things (IoT) that electronic designers and their colleagues may wonder where and how to find traction in this emerging field. In this blog, I’ll identify one fundamental, technical certainty amid myriad uncertainties, and suggest a few issues ripe for your involvement.

How IoT will affect telecom (Part II)

March 31, 2015 3:31 pm | by Robert S. Fish, PhD., Vice President, Standards Activities, IEEE Communications Society, Member-at-Large, IEEE Standards Association Board of Governors, President, Netovations, LLC | Blogs | Comments

One key to the scalability of the existing Internet is pushing intelligence out to the host at the fringes of the network. With IoT, in my view, Moore’s Law has struck again.

Your IoT device: How much data should it collect?

March 31, 2015 12:37 pm | by Noah Gamer, Trend Micro | Blogs | Comments

As smartphones and Internet of Things (IoT) devices have proliferated, data collection has skyrocketed. In fact, sensor technology on smart devices collects 30 percent of the world’s data. Much of that data helps product manufacturers understand their customers, improve ...

10 lies engineers tell themselves about patents

March 31, 2015 11:21 am | by Charles W.K. Gritton, Ph.D, Chief Technology Officer, Hillcrest Labs | Blogs | Comments

In early January, I was in Las Vegas at CES with around 170,000 of my closest friends.  While there, the Q&A portion of a panel discussion of several industry CEOs shocked me and led me to write this column. An audience member asked the panel moderator how patent rights were dealt with....

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Facebook's Internet drones won’t have us all singing Kumbaya

March 31, 2015 8:30 am | by Jason Lomberg, Digital Editor, @JasonECNMag | Blogs | Comments

Facebook recently trialed the solar-powered drones which aim to fulfill the social network giant’s ambitious goal of connecting the entire world to the internet. The Internet.org initiative is an impressive engineering feat, relying on solar-powered UAVs to “beam” the Internet down to billions of people.

This is what a Moon settlement could look like

March 30, 2015 3:23 pm | by Kasey Panetta, Editor, @kcpanetta | Blogs | Comments

Picture this. It's several (decades/centuries) in the future. All food is organically harvested in BioDomes, no one has driven a car in 20 years and Robot Madonna is still cranking out the tunes.

Engineering Newswire: New Rube Goldberg designs violin-playing machine

March 30, 2015 2:32 pm | by David Mantey, Melissa Fassbender, Kaylie Duffy | Videos | Comments

Seth Goldstein has been building instruments and machines for over 50 years. And now, some are calling him the new Rube Goldberg. The MIT engineer spent most of his career working the National Institutes of Health where he served as the Chief of the Mechanical Engineering Section ...

Basics on Triac noise immunity and new low-cost solution to improve device dV/dt

March 30, 2015 10:26 am | by Muriel Nina and Laurent Gonthier, STMicroelectronics | Articles | Comments

Since the 1970’s, Triacs have been used to control AC loads in almost all appliances. Since then, designers have had to face to the particular behavior of a Triac that can be self-triggered in case the rate of voltage increase applied across its terminals is too high....

Engineering Live: What happened to our fascination with space?

March 27, 2015 1:00 pm | by Kasey Panetta, Editor, @kcpanetta | Videos | Comments

The 1960s was arguably the most fascinating time in the world of space. Sputnik had been launched just a few years prior and the entire decade ended with the first moon landing. So what happened?

North Korean black-market consumer darling becomes legal

March 27, 2015 11:18 am | by Jason Lomberg, Digital Editor, @JasonECNMag | Blogs | Comments

In a nation where you can go to jail for not crying hard enough at your leader’s death, this is a small victory. The ‘notel’ — a North Korean word combining 'notebook' and 'television' — is a relatively modest, Chinese-made portable media player ...

How a kid's robotics competition changed this engineer's future

March 27, 2015 10:35 am | by Kasey Panetta, Editor, @kcpanetta | Blogs | Comments

Meet Brian Scharles Jr, Computer Engineer Intern at Traffic and Parking Control Co., and Computer Engineering student at Milwaukee School of Engineering.

Want a free Raspberry Pi 2? We're giving one away

March 26, 2015 4:38 pm | by Kasey Panetta, Editor, @kcpanetta | Blogs | Comments

I'm a big fan of the Raspberry Pi. Newark Element14 was nice enough to send me one a while back and once I figured out what it was, I was absolutely fascinated by the idea that it's basically a grown-up(ish) version of a super sweet building toy.

Engineering Update #103: The world’s first commercial flamethrower

March 26, 2015 10:43 am | by Jon Dipierro, Kasey Panetta, Jason Lomberg, & Janine E. Mooney | Videos | Comments

Now here’s a weapon I can almost guarantee that you’ve seen more at the local multiplex than in someone’s backyard. Its creators describe the XM42 as the “world’s first fully handheld, grab and go portable flamethrower on the market.”

Latest F-35 software glitch mucks with the jet's sensors

March 25, 2015 12:15 pm | by Jason Lomberg, Digital Editor, @JasonECNMag | Blogs | Comments

A seemingly endless string of hardware and software errors have plagued the F-35, and ... here’s another one. A brand new software glitch is causing the JSF’s sensors to malfunction when detecting targets whilst in formation....

Our soon-to-be-relevant and indispensable wearable companions

March 25, 2015 8:59 am | by Bruno Ayme, Consumer Business Development, Freescale Microcontrollers | Blogs | Comments

Beyond having the opportunity to see the next generation of wearable tech first hand, spending last week at the Wearables TechCon strongly reaffirmed the palpable excitement around wearable applications. This market promises extraordinary things, from preventing illness ...

Electric vehicles could reduce global warming, cool down cities

March 24, 2015 7:47 am | by Jason Lomberg, Digital Editor, @JasonECNMag | Blogs | Comments

We’ve heard the claim that gas-guzzlers contribute to global warming, but hybrid and pure electric vehicles could reduce an entirely different sort of heat. According to researchers, electric vehicles (EVs) emit only 19.8% of the heat spewed by conventional vehicles....

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