20 Jul

When it's time to make a Mini You, there's a new 3D printing service that can scan your frame about as easily as snapping your photo.

Twinkind, a company based in Hamburg, Germany, now makes 3D portraits by using a multi-camera 3D scanner, which takes pictures of you from several different angles at once. Then, software processes the photos and creates the 3D model necessary to generate your miniature self, in color.

The key difference here is that Twinkind's scanning process happens practically instantly, unlike other 3D photo booths, which require their subjects to stay perfectly still in a held pose for upwards of 20 minutes. Still other 3D printers only scan their subject from the neck up, with the end product formed out of monochromatic plastic, which doesn't allow for much detail or distinction.

19 Jul

Are you one of Verizon Wireless's 144 million customers, there's something you should know. Two researchers recently found a way to hack into Verizon Wireless network extenders in order to boost their own wireless signals.

The successful hacking attempt shows that ill-meaning technology brainiacs could find their way into a customer's device without them being aware of it. This could happen while using a device in any public indoor location, including a coffee shop, airport terminal, or even within the walls of a school or office building. In a time when consumers are expressing great concern about NSA security leaks, security experts point out that this exploit shows that one of the biggest security risks for consumers lies not in what the government is doing. These security breaches are being perpetrated by regular civilians.

17 Jul

Bendable and flexible displays for phones and tablets are still in the concept phase. Even so, the implications of their use range beyond the mere folding out of a smartphone to tablet size. If successfully developed, flexible displays could become objects with everyday uses.

The latest player to unveil something new? Samsung, which gave a glimpse of its flexible display concept at MobileBeat, a conference sponsored by VentureBeat.

Thanks to video of the presentation from a conference attendee, tech junkies got a closer look at what Samsung has been up to: Exploring possibilities for larger, more versatile screens -- while also using the same technology to test its effectiveness in the area of wearable computing. In the video, a female places a one-use, painless patch on her arm to extract health information that can then be sent to her doctor via smartphone. Radio-frequency waves collect vital stats, replacing invasive procedures, such as blood draws, with a high-tech bodily scan.

15 Jul

Content marketing, says an article from Mashable, should avoid peddling linkbait: Headlined stories that trumpet breathless ideas -- like "8 Tips That Could Save You Thousands Every Day!" -- but which simply serve as easy gateways to try to sell you a product or service.

Some guidelines, drawn from the article, for avoiding the linkbait label with content marketing:

13 Jul

The average speed while in the air didn't reach even 35 mph as a solar-powered airplane recently completed a successful trans-America trip.

Solar Impulse, the brainchild of a pair of Swiss pilots, Bertrand Piccard and André Borschberg, took off from San Francisco on May 3. Following stops in Phoenix, Dallas-Fort Worth, St. Louis, Cincinnati and Washington, DC, the plane landed on July 9 at JFK Airport in New York City.

The two pilots alternated flying the plane throughout the 3,511-mile trip. Their mission? To demonstrate -- for the first time in history -- that a plane powered by only solar energy could fly day and night while traversing America -- without burning a single molecule of fuel. Despite an 8-foot tear in part of the wing fabric, discovered while in flight to JFK, the plane, with the help of visual inspection from a helicopter that indicated the journey could continue, managed to complete the trip safely.

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