Anthropocene

Turning Air Pollution Into Ink

Air pollution causes 3.7 million premature deaths each year and counting. Massive developing countries are threatened by this powerful enemy. “I see smog every morning” said Anirudh Sharma, co-founder of Graviky Labs,  Indian startup and spin-off of MIT Media Lab focusing on technological innovative solutions. That’s why he found a way to turn air pollution into ink that can be used for printers, markers and more. They call it Air Ink.

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Society of Simulations

Barbie Becomes a Hologram of Herself

Barbie came alive! No, we don’t mean Valerie Lukyanova, the woman who turned herself into a human barbie, but the iconic 1950 doll that resides in girls’ bedrooms ever since. In the last 67 years, Barbie has been presidential candidate, doctor, scientist, chef, musician, astronaut, architect, computer engineering and now she’s becoming a 3D-animated hologram personal assistant for your kid. Last week Mattel released the Hello Barbie doll, a laser-beamed character that couples motion-capture animation with lively Amazon Echo AI like behavior.

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Wild Systems

Disruptive Roombas Reflect on the IoT

While I was listening to a fridge in the exhibition Alien Matter, suddenly an orchid on a Roomba hit my feet. The Roomba is part of Internet of Things No. 1 – 3, by artist Addie Wagenknecht, that consists of two other robotic vacuum cleaners that roam around while one carries a box of soylent and the other one a crystal. Internet of Things reflects on the adjustments we make to the environment in our attempt to save time and be more productive.

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Guided Growth

Grow Your Own Bio Bot

Today on the menu, the recipe for your very own biological soft bot! Always wanted a army of self walking skeletons? Have a look at the how to step by step guide by Rashid Bashir’s research group. What sounds like a DIY kit for some free time fun is supposed to help scientists around the world to find answers to questions on the future of health and environment. Manufacturing technologies, such as 3D printing, in combination with developed biological (living) materials, have the ability to improve the construction of complicated 3D structures, taking the next step in the search of enhanced life.

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Anthropomorphobia

Artificial Intelligence Learns to Smell

Did you ever think about how artificial intelligence will deal with smell in the future? A group of 22 teams of computer scientists came up with a set of algorithms able to forecast the scent of different molecules based on their chemical composition. With such algorithms you might be able to know exactly what people will smell in the future.

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Manufactured Animals

Plastic Exoskeletons for Turtles

Turtles love jellyfish. Unfortunately, they often mistake plastic bags for their favorite food. According to the United Nations Environment Program each year 100,000 marine mammals, including sea turtles, die from ocean pollution and ingestion or entanglement in marine debris; waste directly or indirectly disposed in oceans, rivers and other waterways. Antonio Esparza designed the TurtleBag: a 3D printable exoskeleton to help turtles distinguish plastic bags from jellyfish and extend their lifespan.

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Wild Systems

Take Your Data Selfie

What is your digital footprint? Facebook knows it. Developers Regina Flores Mir and Hang Do Thi Duc created a new Chrome extension called the Data Selfie. The Data Selfie is an application developed to quantify your digital footprint is by looking at your media and social networks consumption. Every ‘like’ and ‘click’ on Facebook tells a story about you. Even the articles you read and where they come from.

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Augmented Bodies

Scientists Create Ghost Heart

Can you imagine having a ghost heart beating in your chest? By bringing back pig hearts to life, this could be possible soon. Worldwide around 25 million individuals suffer from heart failure. With donor organ shortage and rejection approximately 2500 hearts are being transplanted each year. This gap shows the need for sustainable and effective ways to implement heart transplantations, but with all new technologies we need to do some ethical reflection.

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