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Search Results for: jetpack

Otters Now Taking Home Videos In Monterey Bay


By Evan Ackerman

Looks like the recession hasn’t had much of an effect on California sea otters, one of whom was recently spotted in Monterey Bay with his own video camera.

“I was like, did I actually see an otter with a video camera or was I hallucinating?” [Aguirre] said.

The screen on Aguirre’s digital camera soon confirmed what he’d seen: an otter floating on its back, video camera grasped in its paws, lens aimed at the boat of excited photographers. The humans had a bad angle, but Aguirre managed to snap a single clear shot before the otter dived, video camera in tow.

“He’s the only one who got the photo,” Gideon said.

Judging by the rust and seaweed adorning the camera, the otter probably wasn’t getting much good footage. But Aguirre, who has photographed animals all over the world for more than a decade, said the otter aiming a camcorder was the “craziest” thing he’s seen an animal do in the wild.

The otter never resurfaced, leaving the photographers to speculate on the make and model of the animal’s gear. Aguirre suspects that the camera was dropped by a kayaking tourist and then picked up by the curious creature.

“I know I can go down there another million times and I will never see another otter with a video camera,” Aguirre said. “I think I have more chance of a penguin coming up to me and actually speaking English.”

I dunno, if the sea otters can somehow monetize their YouTube cuteness, I wouldn’t be surprised to see them sporting MP3 players and SD cards and jetpacks.

[ Santa Cruz Sentinel ] VIA [ Neatorama ]

Flying Ferrari Only Two Years Away

By Evan Ackerman

Alright, here’s the good news: in as few as two years, you may be able to purchase a Ferrari 599 GTB, capable of vertical takeoff and sustained flight at up to 150 mph with a range of 75 miles. It’ll have a hybrid electric engine developing up to 800 hp, powering eight ducted fans mounted in the fuselage that can push the car around while it’s on the ground (kinda like a hovercraft, I guess), or direct thrust downward for liftoff. Once airborne, the car maneuvers like a helicopter, rolling to turn and changing pitch to move forward or backward.

Ready for the bad news? It’s not the estimated price of $813,000. No, it’s the fact that the car is being developed by Moller International, the same Moller International who has been promising us a flying car for the last five years or so. How’s it been going? Well, I just checked, and there’s no M400x in my driveway. Hold on, let me check again… OMG! Wait, nevermind, that’s just a squirrel with a jetpack. Sigh. Oh well, a flying Ferrari was fun to think about for like 30 seconds anyway.

[ Telegraph ] VIA [ Fark ]

Put This In The Garage Next To The Lamborghini

By Jonathan Kimak

Jetpacks have always seemed extremely cool, even if the prospect of going hundreds of miles an hour with only a set of goggles protecting you from a speck of dust that could gouge your eyes out. Yesterday a real jetpack was revealed to the people at the Experimental Aircraft Association’s AirVenture, a weeklong air show in Oshkosh, Wisconsin.

The Martin Jetpack, which is technically classified as an ultralight aircraft, can hover for 30 minutes and can theoretically reach 8,000 feet. So far the jetpack has only gone as high as 6 feet with someone wearing it. No one is allowed to fly this $100,000 machine without having 15 hours of training and a safety screening that presumably keeps the Bond supervillains from getting their hands on one of these.

[ MSNBC ] VIA [ Engadget ]

Video of the jetpack in action after the jump

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How Not To Spend $750K On A Computer

Zeus Computers

By Evan Ackerman

If you have several hundred thousand dollars in your pocket, are looking for a mediocre desktop PC, and like teh shiny, then one of these computers Zeus might be exactly what you’re looking for (although you’d be better served by a swift smack to the side of the head). The Zeus Jupiter is cast from solid platinum and encrusted with diamonds in the shape of constellations for about $748,000, while the Mars casing is only $560,000 in modest solid gold. Inside each case is an underwhelming system consisting of a 3GHz Intel Core 2 Duo processor with a 256MB GeForce 7200GS graphics card, a 1 TB SATA drive, 2 gigs of RAM, and either a Blu-ray or HD-DVD drive with Vista Ultimate preinstalled.

Now, just take a moment to consider what else you could blow $750,000 on… Like, two trips to space. And a personal jetpack. And a new Nissan GT-R. And another GT-R for when you crash the first one. Or, you could get a platinum computer that sits under your desk and collects dust. Your call.

[ Zeus Computer ] VIA [ Times Online ]

DO WANT: Personal Jet Wing

Jet Wing

By Evan Ackerman

Okay, so the personal jetpack is pretty cool, but I think the personal jet wing is even cooler. Although it can’t (yet) launch you into the air, the four rocket engines (not sure if they’re rockets or jet turbines) bolted onto the carbon graphite wing provide enough thrust to propel the pilot horizontally for 4-6 minutes at 115 mph, at around 8000 ft (after you’ve jumped out of an airplane first). Landings are accomplished via parachute. Yeah, so maybe it’s not quite as practical or versatile as the personal jetpack, but doesn’t it look badass, especially with the folding wingtips? Vid (it’s in French, but you just want to see the thing in action, right?) after the jump.Continue Reading

[CES 2008] Panel: Science Fiction’s Influence On Technology


By Evan Ackerman

There are a bunch of celebrities here at CES, but I’m ignoring most of them, since all they’re good for is stealing my valuable gadget sniffing time on the show floor. I say most, because (besides Bill), I am devoting an hour to one conference session more or less solely because of the celebrity panel, which includes Lucy Lawless (Xena, and Cylon Number Three on Battlestar Galactica), Neal Stephenson (author of Snow Crash), Walt Mossberg (tech columnist for the Wall Street Journal), and Dean Kamen (inventor of the Segway, among many other things). I’ll be liveblogging this in the same way that I did the keynote.

[ UPDATE- Video of the entire thing (an hour long) up at DVICE here ]

Lots of text, and a picture or two, after the jump.Continue Reading

“Cellular Book” Display Flexes Muscles, Self


By Evan Ackerman

Next week at the 3GSM World Congress in Barcelona, Polymer Vision will be showcasing a PDA device with a flexible display. When not in use, the display wraps around its electronics, effectively giving you a five inch display out of a form factor that’s “smaller than a typical mobile phone.” The grayscale display features 16 shades, and is apparently bright and contrasty enough to read in full sunlight while retaining an average battery life of 10 days (!). The unit itself will debut with 4 gigs of onboard memory, a mini USB port, and a touch sensitive LED display (separate from the screen).

Now, we should point out that despite the not-so-subtle allusions, this thing isn’t a cell phone and can’t make phone calls. It connects to a GSM data network and can download books, maps, email, and music. It also doesn’t seem to be able to handle moving images, but support for this (as well as a color screen) are on the way. It’s always exciting when a technology that has spent so long in the realm of the personal jetpack and the flying car finally hits the consumer market.

Initial availability will be in Italy later this year. No pricing information yet, but hopefully we’ll get more details from 3GSM.

[ “Cellular-Book” ] VIA [ Polymer Vision ]

Video Of Homemade Air-Powered Jet Pack

air pack

By David Ponce

Being a web worker has rather very few occupational hazards. Perhaps, now and then, our butts will fall asleep and require a little walk around the apartment. Or, our wrists will feel a little tense, prompting some vigorous shaking of the hands. Or, like in this case, require the changing of our underwear from laughing too hard at the hilarity of some video or other.

Well… not really, but the video we’ve included is pretty freaking funny. It features Japanese people doing something they seem to be very talented at: doing weird stuff. In this case, a some guys strapped a bunch of soda bottles together, pumped them full of air with a bicycle pump, and strapped them to the back of a retarded young man. When triggered (somehow), the man becomes airborne from the thrust generated by this homemade jetpack.

Come inside and watch. It’s worth it.

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