Cloud Computing Center Submerged Underwater
Feast your eyes on the world's highest, longest bridge, a virtual reality experience that shows the surreal world of Salvador Dali's art and zoom along with drone racers. Above: Glass bridges are becoming all the rage in the China. There's one in Hunan Province, for example, that's 984 feet long and spans a 590-foot deep crevasse. Now Israeli architectural firm Haim Dotan is on track to build a 1410-foot-long one over the Zhangjiajie Grand Canyon, 984 below. The architects say it should hold 800 people at a time. You first.
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The Dali Museum via Youtube
A new exhibit at theDalí Museum
in St. Petersburg, Fla., offers visitors a way to immerse themselves in the surrealistic art of Salvador Dalí. But you can also get a view of itonline
and by watching this interactiveYoutube
video that lets you scan the field by moving arrows up or down.
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Superthin and flexible pressure sensors were developed by scientists in the Someya Laboratory at the University of Tokyo. Extremely sensitive, the sensors could one day be incorporated in gloves to physically screen for breast cancer or tumors.
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To show just how aerodynamic their seven-seater X-Trail crossover vehicle is, Nissan built a seven-seater bobsleigh. British Olympic medallist Sean Olsson took it for a spin at the Igls Olympic track in Innsbruck, Austria, and found that the sled accelerated from 0 to 62 mph in 30 seconds. We're wondering if it has cupholders.
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Cheetah Ultra Sports has a new carbon composite snowboard called The Whip FR-II. The open slot running down the middle is supposed to minimize weight and friction, while also providing stability.
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For jet lag, people used to take melatonin. Remember that? Now there's technology. Neuroon is a sleep mask that uses Bluetooth to connect to a mobile phone app. The mask monitors brain waves, analyzes sleep patterns, and uses light therapy to improve sleep quality.
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All Aboard Florida
Floridians are getting a new train. Beginning some time in 2017, the Brightline will whisk passengers between Orlando International Airport, West Palm Beach, Fort Lauderdale and Miami, reaching speeds of 120 miles per hour.
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Drone Racing League
For the first time ever, drones are getting their own competition. The Drone Racing League is setting up its first race course of the year on February 22 at Sun Life Stadium, home of the Miami Dolphins. Other events will be announced at different venues throughout the year.
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Scientists at Harvard University have discovered that a simple fold in origami called mountain-valley fold is so versatile, it could be the key to creating just about any shape. Objects that fold and collapse into smaller packages could have applications in space travel, architecture, surgery and robotics.
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The Lifeshirt from Aegis is a shirt you can wear while boating, surfing, waterskiing, etc. But unlike other shirts, this one works like a floatation device in emergency situations. Just pull the handle in the shoulder and a CO2-cylinder inflates a bladder designed to keep the head above water. The shirt can also be set to automatic and inflate as soon as it detects that the wearer is submerged in water.
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Microsoft revealed that as the world turns to computing power in the cloud, it is working to put datacenters under water.
Researchers working on "Project Natick" tested a prototype vessel on the ocean floor about a kilometer off the US Pacific Coast for about four months last year.
The vessel was named after a Leona Philpot character in popular Xbox video game franchise Halo.
"The bottom line is that in one day this thing was deployed, hooked up and running," Microsoft Research NExT special projects leader Norm Whitaker said in a post at the company's website. "A wild ocean adventure turned out to be a regular day at the office."
A diver went down monthly to check on the vessel, otherwise the research team remained in contact remotely. Data from the experiment was still being analyzed but preliminary results appear promising, according to Microsoft.
"This is speculative technology, in the sense that if it turns out to be a good idea, it will instantly change the economics of this business,” Whitaker said.
The Natick mission is to build and operate an underwater datacenter.
With about half of the world's population living near large bodies of water and a shift to accessing software hosted in the Internet cloud, having datacenters submerged nearby could save money and speed up access to information, Microsoft reasoned.
Currents or tides can be tapped to generate electricity to power datacenters, and the cold depths provide natural cooling.
"Deepwater deployment offers ready access to cooling, renewable power sources, and a controlled environment," Whitaker said.
The next phase of Project Natick is being planned and may include a bigger vessel with 20 times the computing power than the original, which is back at the Microsoft headquarters in Redmond, Washington.
Microsoft last week reported earnings that surpassed Wall Street expectations with a winning shift into the Internet cloud. Microsoft made a profit of $5 billion on $23.8 billion in revenue in the final three months of last year.
Software offered as a service in the Internet cloud has been a key aspect of Microsoft's effort to adapt to a shift away from packaged software on which the US company was built.
Cloud computing lets people use the Internet to tap into processing or data storage capacity at huge data centers.
"Businesses everywhere are using the Microsoft Cloud as their digital platform to drive their ambitious transformation agendas," chief executive Satya Nadella said during an earnings call. "The enterprise cloud opportunity is massive."