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Tag Archives: Concepts

Solar-Powered System Extracts Drinking Water From The Air

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There’s water all around you, and lots of it is in the air you breathe. Getting it out of there and into drinkable form, however, takes a bit of effort. Austrian design student Kristof Retezár has come up with an ingenious device called Fontus, which uses solar power to extract moisture from the air and funnel it into a bottle. It’s meant to be attached to a bicycle, and uses the passing wind (from the forward motion of the bike) to accelerate the extraction process, reaching speeds of 0.5L an hour. This means you could drink a standard bottle of water every for hour you cycle, given the right climactic conditions. The extraction is accomplished through the use of a Peltier Element, which features two metal plates of opposing temperatures, one hot and one cold. Running warm moist air through the cold element condenses the humidity, which then just needs to be collected.

It’s just a prototype at the moment, and there doesn’t seem to be any plans for commercialization. But the product could be very interesting for outdoors enthusiasts who might want to venture out, away from the grid, for extended periods.

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Fake Ad Campaign Mashes Up Pop Culture Characters Into Fake LEGO Minifigs

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Remember being a kid and cherry-picking superpowers from different characters in order to create your very own super superhero? That was fun. Clearly, mashing things together is something we’ve been doing since childhood, and Argentinian art director Alexandre Tissier hasn’t lost his touch. Pictured are his renditions of what some pop culture characters would look like if they were mashed together and turned into a LEGO Minifig. Homer and The Wolverine as a mining? Behold ‘Homerine’. James Bond with Spiderman? ‘Spider Bond’, of course.

It’s for a fake ad campaign, and it’s not a product, or anything. Just Alexandre having some fun. We thought you might enjoy.

Hit the jump for two more pics, and links.

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Ambulance Drone Could Save Your Life One Day

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It’s estimated that out of the roughly 800,000 people who suffer a cardiac arrest in the EU each year, only about 8% of them survive. That’s in large part due to how long it can take emergency services to reach the patient. While 10 minutes may not seem like much, brain death occurs in 4 to 6 minutes so every second counts. That’s why a device like Alec Momont Ambulance Drone could save lives. It would carry a defibrillator, travel up to 60 mph, and be able to reach its target within one minute. The patient’s exact location would be communicated via their smartphone’s GPS, and as long as someone is nearby to administer treatment, survival rates could easily increase to 80%

The drone is a graduation project at the moment, and isn’t in the process of getting to market. However, Alec intends to pursue its development and hopes to see a viable product within 5 years.

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[ Project Page ] VIA [ Walyou ]

This Belt Turns Into A Scooter

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Ah yes, we’ve always wanted to keep our pants up with a 4 pound belt. Who hasn’t? Although to be honest, if it meant that we could just whip it out and ride around in a neat scooter, we might actually consider it. But then of course our pants would fall off, which means the belt is just decorative, which makes you wonder why you’re going through so much trouble in the first place. Ádám Török, from Hungary, decided as part of his product design graduation project in 2013 that in the future most transportation methods will be portable, and that seems to be good enough a reason for him. He created this Belt Scooter to demonstrate his point. It does seem functional, but is most likely a one-off project. Whether it’s available for sale anywhere is anyone’s guess, but it’s nice to know what sort of things can be made with a bit of ingenuity and creativity.

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Hit the jump for a bunch of pics.

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Suitcase Turns Scooter Turns Suitcase!

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Dragging suitcases about has always been a hassle for most of us; but now, things are about to take a dramatic turn. He Liangchai, a Chinese entrepreneur, has come up with a unique concept of a suitcase that can be transformed into a scooter. The scooter, which is capable of transporting two people, is a multi-functional commuter that is equipped with features like a GPS navigator, a horn and even a burglar alarm. The handle of the suitcase is the scooter’s handlebar, which, when pulled up, allows drivers to use it as a steering input, brake and throttle. It features a built-in lithium-ion battery that can cover a maximum distance of 37 miles at 12 miles per hour. When it hits the market, the price estimate is between £380 (about $640) and £2,800 (about $4,700), depending on the type of model.

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VIA [ Damngeeky ]

Concept Speaker Sticks To Your Window, Cancels Outside Noise

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You’re probably all familiar with noise-canceling headphones, like those from Bose. They work by listening to ambient noise, and generating an inverse wave to cancel as much of it as they can. It works reasonably well. And now you could bring the same principle inside the home, to silence passing traffic and other outdoors noise. The concept is called Sono, and consists of a stick-on device that you apply to your windows. It then listens to what’s happening outside and uses your entire window as a speaker to cancel that noise out. It’s a brilliant idea and we’re a little sad that it hasn’t been turned into a product you can purchase yet. As it stands, it’s a finalist for a James Dyson Award and if the stars align, you might one day be able to enjoy peace and quiet at home, even if you home happens to be built right on top of an interstate.

[ Award Page ] VIA [ Gizmodo ]

New Fast Food Bag Tech: Genius? Or Overkill?

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There’s something to be said about the above concept, we’re just not sure what. In case the animation doesn’t play or you’re unable to see it, you’re looking at a piece of cardboard with strategically cut holes that allow you to carry a burger, fries and a drink in one hand. Now, some of you are going to ask “what’s wrong with a regular bag?” Or, “how would this work if you try to put it down on a car seat?” We hear you, but hey, any way you slice it, the fact remains that with this method, you retain the use of one hand. Is it better than what we have now? We suppose it depends on your needs, but having more options is generally a good thing and we’d be delighted to see this being used alongside regular bags. Unfortunately, we don’t have any more info than what you see so we can’t tell you if there are any plans to ever put this into circulation. Heck, maybe it already is?

VIA [ Reddit ]

So This Lady Wants To Make A Countertop Maggot Breeding Machine, You Know… For Eating…

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Yeah, so this is pretty gross. But there’s some sense in it as well. Designer and Fulbright scholar Katharina Unger wants to tackle the looming problem of overpopulation and food shortage with something she’s calling Farm 432. It’s a countertop contraption whose only purpose is to provide a fertile environment for fly larvae (otherwise known as maggots) to breed, grow, and… turn themselves into food. In as little as 18 days (or 432 hours), 1 gram of fly eggs can turn into 2.4 kilograms (5.3lbs) of theoretically edible maggots; Farm 432 just makes it simple as pie to grow and harvest them. You feed them scraps of leftover food, and very little water and the insects take care of themselves. Once the eggs hatch, and the larva have grown somewhat, they prepare to pupate and turn into flies. So they’ll look for a drier, safer place to do so, which leads them up a ramp and into an eventual trap. Once in the trap, it’s your turn to grab them and… cook them. Maggots are 72% protein, as well a lot of calcium and amino acids.

Granted this all sounds awful for a western population that generally doesn’t eat insects. But looked at through a purely practical point of view, it’s not a completely unreasonable contribution to one of mankind’s biggest problems of the relatively near future. Farm 432 only seems to have a prototype (or maybe even just some good CG renders) at the moment and we can’t find information on commercialization. We don’t expect there to be much demand for this either… for now anyway.

Hit the jump for a few more pictures, including some of the, uh, resulting food.

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This Crowdfunded Project Hopes To Have A Working Hoverboard By 2015

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Let’s call this one a really long shot. One Robert Haleluk has launched an IndieGogo campaign, hoping to raise $1 million, with the aim of developing a working hoverboard by 2015. Yes, that’s the same year that Marty McFly hops on the device in the movie. And no, it doesn’t plan to use some form of magnetic levitation (or whatever it is in the flick), but good ole propellers:

The boards would be constructed from a honeycomb carbon fiber to keep weight to a minimum. In terms of power source, Haleluk is looking at two promising new lightweight battery technologies – a Lithium-Air battery in development by IBM with the goal of powering a car for up to 500 miles on a single charge or a unique energy device being researched by Stanford which can store power in a sheet of paper with special ink infused with carbon nanotubes and silver nanowires. Of course, neither of these technologies is in production yet, so that certainly creates a risk factor for the Hoverboard project. Current off-the-shelf battery technologies would likely be insufficient to lift a passenger for any meaningful period of time.

So we’re going to make another call here, and say that this isn’t just a long shot. It isn’t going to happen. The guy wants a cool million, just to possibly maybe find the technology that can make this a reality. And then to possibly perhaps assemble it all into a working product. Sure. Not to mention that the minimum pledge that will get you an actual hoverboard is $10,000! Yeah… we’re all for innovation and crowdfunding, but we like a little smidgeon of realism as well.

We’re not the only ones who think so; the project has raised $61 as of this writing.

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[ Project Page ] VIA [ Technabob ]