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Thread: Inventions of the Year

  1. #1
    Santa's Avatar dvhyt5er
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    Time Magazines Inventions of the Year 2005
    all items - http://www.time.com/time/business/ar...129516,00.html


    Airing It Out
    Inventor: Michelin
    Availability: Now for the IBOT; about 2020 for cars
    To Learn More: michelinman.com
    A wheel without an inflated tire may seem old-fashioned—think wooden buggy wheels—but the Tweel from Michelin is anything but retro. A shock-absorbing rubber tread band distributes pressure to dozens of flexible polyurethane spokes. The spokes in turn are supported by an aluminum center. Because the Tweel is airless, it is more rugged than a pneumatic tire and never goes flat. The Tweel has been tested on the IBOT robotic wheelchair and military vehicles. But you won’t see it on your Honda anytime soon. Michelin says it is still too noisy for automotive applications.

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    Handles Like a Dream
    Inventor: Yoshiaki Kato of Toyota
    Availability: Prototype only
    To Learn More: www.toyota.co.jp/en/news/04/1203_1e.html
    The i-unit is a four-wheel personal-transportation system that looks like a space-age sports car. "This is designed to be an extension of the human body," says Yoshiaki Kato, chief engineer of the fully electronic, drive-by-wire concept vehicle, which is powered by lithium-ion batteries and has an exterior made of biodegradable, plant-based materials. The 3-ft.-wide, leaf-shaped i-unit is nearly 6 ft. tall when positioned upright but drops its center of gravity and reclines into a sports-car position for traveling at speeds of up to 25 m.p.h. Sensors allow the vehicle to detect obstacles. Place the steering unit to the left or right—or even at the feet of those with special needs.


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    Rise and Shine
    Inventor: Lee Loree
    Availability: Now, $149
    To Learn More: sleeptracker.com
    Ever wonder why you feel groggier some mornings than others? It may be because your alarm went off when you were in the middle of a deep sleep. The Sleeptracker watch solves this problem by waking you only when you are in a light sleep. Equipped with a built-in motion sensor, the watch can tell whether you are in a deep or a light slumber. (The more restless you are, the lighter your sleep.) To ensure an optimal waking time, allow a window of 20 minutes or so when it would be O.K. to get up. Then Sleeptracker's alarm will go off when it senses that you are best ready to face the day.



    Perfect Brew
    Inventor: Matthew Younkle, Laminar Technologies
    Availability: Businesses can lease it for $99 a year per tap; keg-cooler version costs $209, kegerator, $179
    To Learn More: turbotap.com
    Nothing kills happy hour like a big head. Now bartenders and concessionaires pulling pints can rely on TurboTap to keep things neat. The device, a stainless-steel spout that attaches to an existing tap, changes the flow of the beer so that it hits the bottom just so, eliminating the need to tilt the glass or slow down the pour. (The tail end, shaped like a Hershey's Kiss, feathers the liquid out to the sides; it takes only eight to 10 seconds to fill a pitcher.) Got a kegerator in the garage? You're in luck: home kits are now available.


    Fruit Tattoos
    Inventor: Greg Drouillard
    Availability: Now, on a trial basis
    To Learn More: durand-wayland.com/label
    Goodbye, pesky stickers. A growing number of produce packers and distributors are experimenting with natural-light labeling, a new process that uses a laser to etch identifying information (country of origin, variety, etc.) into the skins of fruits and vegetables without bruising or causing other damage. In our taste tests with pears from Southern Oregon Sales, the labeled areas proved entirely edible, if oddly textured. The process allows suppliers to attach more specific data to individual items—such as when a peach will be ripe enough to eat and other handy tidbits—in a way that won't stick to your hair.


    Uncorked
    Inventor: G&eactue;rard Michel, Laurent Villaume
    Availability: Now, $59.95
    To Learn More: tasting-international.com
    Have you ever popped the cork on a fine Bordeaux or Chardonnay only to encounter a bitter taste and noxious aroma? About 5% of all bottled wine is tainted by a molecule in some corks known as trichloroanisole (TCA). Now a French company has devised a way to extract the TCA and restore the wine's bouquet. Pour the wine into the Dream Taste glass pitcher and insert a bunch of white plastic grapes, included in the kit. The faux fruit acts as a filter, absorbing the TCA in about an hour. Then pour a fresh glass, sit back and enjoy.

    Dancing Machine
    Inventor: Tohoku University, Nomura Unison Group, TroisO Co. Ltd.
    Availability: Prototype only
    To Learn More: www.irs.mech.tohoku.ac.jp/top.html
    With a face modeled on Marilyn Monroe's and a long, flowing skirt to hide its three wheels, the Partner Ballroom Dance Robot is a 5-ft. 5-in. waltzing humanoid. Available in hot pink or blue, it has upper-body sensors that allow it to "predict" its partner's next steps. Dancing is just one application. "By interpreting users' movements to estimate what they want, care robots will be able to provide better service for the elderly who may be too sick or handicapped to give verbal orders," says bioengineering and robotics professor Kazuhiro Kosuge, one of the creators.

    Sport Shades
    Inventor: Alan Reichow at Pacific University for Nike
    Availability: Now, $60 for box of six lenses. Purchase requires fitting by a professional; monthly replacement recommended.
    To Learn More: nikevision.com & bauschlomb.com
    These amber-tinted MaxSight contact lenses from Nike filter out blue light to reduce glare and improve the visibility of baseballs, tennis balls and other moving targets. A gray-green version gives golfers an edge by enhancing the dips and curves of a distant putting green. Orioles second baseman Brian Roberts credits his MaxSights with boosting his batting average last season; Michelle Wie wore them during her professional debut. The lenses, like those in any decent pair of sunglasses, also filter out ultraviolet rays.


    Clear Water Revival
    Inventor: Vestergaard Frandsen Group
    Availability: Early 2006; $3 and up
    To Learn More: lifestraw.com
    The price of a caffe latte—about $3—really can save a life. The LifeStraw, a beefed-up drinking straw designed by the Swiss-based company Vestergaard Frandsen, uses seven types of filters, including mesh, active carbon and iodine, to make 185 gal. of water clean enough to drink. It can prevent waterborne illnesses, such as typhoid and diarrhea, that kill at least 2 million people every year in the developing world. It can also create safe drinking water for victims of hurricanes, earthquakes or other disasters. And finally, it makes a handy accoutrement for the weekend warrior's back-country hike.


    Time Magazines Inventions of the Year 2005
    alot more items - http://www.time.com/time/business/ar...129516,00.html
    Last edited by 15%; 11-27-2005 at 12:00 AM.

  2. Lounge   -   #2
    twisterX's Avatar Poster
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    the watch thing is so cool.

  3. Lounge   -   #3
    Santa's Avatar dvhyt5er
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    Patchwork
    Inventor: Ellis Developments Ltd.
    Availability: Now, in England only
    To Learn More: ellisdev.co.uk
    It may look like a delicate doily, but the Bioimplantable Device is a rugged internal bandage that helps patients recover swiftly from shoulder-joint-replacement surgery. Made of standard polyester surgical thread, the device has an embroidered pattern that gives it strength and flexibility while imitating human tendons. Once implanted between muscles and bones, the device is never removed; it becomes part of the body as cells grow over it. This technology is also being used to replace slipped disks in the neck and to aid in clavicle-replacement surgery.



    Walk Man
    Inventor: Yoshiyuki Sankai, University of Tsukuba
    Availability: Near future, $14,000–$19,000
    To Learn More: sanlab.kz.tsukuba.ac.jp
    Enter ... Mecha-Grandma! Japanese researchers have developed a robotic exoskeleton to help the elderly and disabled walk and even lift heavy objects like the jug of water above. It’s called the Hybrid Assistive Limb, or HAL. (The inventor has obviously never seen 2001: A Space Odyssey.) Its brain is a computer (housed in a backpack) that learns to mimic the wearer’s gait and posture; bioelectric sensors pick up signals transmitted from the brain to the muscles, so it can anticipate movements the moment the wearer thinks of them. A commercial version is in the works. Just don’t let it near the pod-bay doors.


    Pumped And Ready
    Inventor: Cam Brensinger
    Availability: Now, $395 for two-person Hypno tent
    To Learn More: nemoequipment.com
    Tired of fumbling with tent poles as the sun goes down at some campsite in the woods? Nemo Equipment's inflatable tent has two supporting beams that are virtually pop-proof and are inflated with a foot pump to give the tent a rigid structure without aluminum poles. Designed by Cam Brensinger, a consultant for a NASA project designing spacesuits for Mars, the Nemo tents bring aerospace technology to the great outdoors. The company says the tents can be erected in less than a minute—in our test it took 48 seconds!
    (this was ripped from kitesurfers)

    New Wave
    Inventor: Mark Itnyre and Peter Mehiel
    Availability: Now, $850 to $1,200
    To Learn More: hydroepic.com
    After decades of riding waves on boards made of foam and fiberglass, surfers have a high-tech alternative. Hydro Epic boards are hollow on the inside but have an extra-sturdy shell made of a carbon fiber–Kevlar composite and a thin aluminum honeycomb. To keep the air in the board from expanding and contracting in extreme heat or at high altitudes, there is a small vent at one end that lets air pass through while keeping water out. The radical design makes Hydro Epics stronger, faster and up to 30% lighter (the short board weighs 51⁄2 lbs.) than other boards. More important, the board has more flex, for better maneuverability.
    Next Product: Big Wheel


    Big Wheels Keep On Turnin'
    Inventor: LandRoller
    Availability: Now, $249
    To Learn More: landroller.com
    A pair of skates with wheels that are angled inward may seem terribly wrong. But the oversize wheels on the new LandRollers are aligned in such a way that they help you keep your balance, especially on a cracked pavement or an uneven surface. Because the wheels' tilt is offset by the weight of your foot, the skate actually feels sturdier than most inline skates. Experienced skaters may find the LandRollers a little clunky and heavier than other popular skates, but for beginners longing to roll with the rest of the crowd, these two-wheelers do an admirable job of reducing the fear factor.





    League Of Its Own
    Inventor: Pure Digital Technologies
    Availability: Now, at dive and photo shops, $550
    To Learn More: sealife-cameras.com
    The bijou camera eliminates the traditional bulk of underwater cameras, measuring a mere 3.5 in. by 5.5 in. and weighing just under 17 oz. But there's no sacrificing image quality. The SeaLife DC500 captures ultrasharp, high-resolution pictures and overcomes underwater photography challenges including poor light, waterborne particles and quick-moving subjects. And it's good for a deep dive. The camera is waterproof down to 200 ft. and also has six modes for land.



    The Right Touch
    Inventor: Takao Someya
    Availability: Prototype only
    To Learn More: www.ntech.t.u-tokyo.ac.jp
    The key to making artificially intelligent robots lies in giving them plenty of ways to gather information about their environment. Takao Someya, a researcher at the University of Tokyo, has created an electronic film—made up of bendable, shock-resistant transistors embedded in plastic—that can detect pressure and temperature. The sheet, known as a "large-area sensor array," is flexible enough to cover small objects and could give robots a sense of touch. Another potential use: smart carpet or furniture upholstery that can automatically adjust its temperature.


    Keeping Dry
    Inventor: Sally Ramsey, Ecology Coatings
    Availability: Commercial production in about 18 months
    To Learn More: ecologycoatings.com
    Like many great inventions, Ecology Coatings' new type of waterproof paper was an accident. While experimenting with a new protective coating for plastic in her lab, chief chemist Sally Ramsey put down paper to keep her workspace clean. But before she trashed the coated paper, she got curious. It turned out that she had created a waterproof and mildew-resistant paper that was easy to write on. The technology could be perfect for such low-cost paper products as shipping labels.

    Formfitting
    Inventor: Rikiya Fukuda
    Availability: Prototype only
    To Learn More: snipurl.com/jp3h (Japanese only)
    A door that fits like a glove? This one does. Fukuda's Automatic Door, designed in Japan, opens just enough to match the shape of the person or object passing through. The nifty motion-detecting portal saves energy by keeping a door from having to repeatedly open all the way. That helps maintain a stable temperature in a room and can prevent dirt and other materials from being swept inside. In addition to people, the new system can be used for small objects, like packages dropped off at a post office, or for larger things, like a car coming through a garage door.
    Last edited by 15%; 11-27-2005 at 12:01 AM.

  4. Lounge   -   #4
    ziggyjuarez's Avatar Poster
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    The Clear Water Revival would be grate for 3rd world countrys.

  5. Lounge   -   #5
    Santa's Avatar dvhyt5er
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    Training Wheels
    Inventor: Scott Shim, Matt Grossman and Ryan Lightbody
    Availability: In late 2006; $100
    To Learn More: designapkin.com
    Learning to ride a bike can be fraught with anxiety, but it doesn't have to be. Industrial designers from Purdue University have invented the Shift tricycle, whose rear wheels move closer together as the rider picks up speed, then separate for easier balance at slower speeds or at a standstill. A spring-loaded mechanism in the rear hub controls the rear wheels, and there are no spokes or exposed bike chain. The 25-lb. aluminum trike won an international bike-design competition in Taiwan this year. Now its creators want to produce it commercially.




    Tunnel Vision
    Inventor: Fascinations
    Availability: Now, $20, plus $3 for 25 live ants
    To Learn More: fascinations.com
    Want a low-maintenance pet that won't scratch, shed or sleep all day? AntWorks is a new kind of ant farm that replaces dirt or sand with a clear, seaweed-based gel that is packed with all the tasty sugar, water and nutrients that ants need to survive. Just pop in some ants, close the lid, and watch the insects start tunneling through the blue-tinted goop. A magnifying glass, included, lets you see the ants' surprisingly sharp claws and even the hair on their bodies. For special effects, blue LED lights can be attached to the bottom of AntWorks to make it glow day and night.


    alot more items - http://www.time.com/time/business/ar...129516,00.html
    Last edited by 15%; 11-27-2005 at 12:01 AM.

  6. Lounge   -   #6
    ziggyjuarez's Avatar Poster
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    i seen that "Formfitting" in action.Dont work too well.In a few years if they work out the kinks maybe.But as of today it sucks.

  7. Lounge   -   #7
    maebach's Avatar Team FST Captain
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    Waterproof paper is cool and as ziggy said, the water purifier would help alot. Actually, all the inventions would help I think.

  8. Lounge   -   #8
    Yogs's Avatar n00b
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    Bon apetit!!!
    Last edited by Yogs; 11-27-2005 at 10:04 AM.

  9. Lounge   -   #9
    Gripper's Avatar Dexter's Apprentice.
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    Exoskeletons...wicked,sci-fi becomes fact

    All spelling mistakes and grammatical errors in my post's are intentional.

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    Yogs's Avatar n00b
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