New computer-related technology appears continuously. While there are many new devices that you may not have heard of, there are even more exciting on the way that are still in the development and testing phases. These innovations run the gamut from everyday consumer use to industrial construction and medicinal diagnostics.
Whether looking for a unique gift for computer geek friends or a different means of advertising a business, USB pens are one of the latest technological offerings. Available in a variety of styles, the pens resemble their conventional counterparts and retain writing capability. However, neatly hidden within each pen is a storage device that holds anywhere from 64 MB to 64 GB of information. The variable styles include devices that resemble a generic ink pen to more elegant versions that look like an expensive fountain pen.
Building Homes with 3D Printers
According to ComputerWorld, an ingenious company in China recently became the first to construct the shells of multiple buildings in less than a day using recycled materials and massive 3D printers. Using four printers operated by CAD software, Yingchuang New Materials Inc. completed 10 single room structures within 24 hours. The cost of constructing each room was approximately $5,000. Called Contour Crafting, the fascinating process involves emitting layers of a specially designed concrete mixture in one continuous, fluid motion. Each layer measures approximately four inches in thickness and six inches in height. The printer itself is extremely portable, consisting of two components that together weigh approximately 500 pounds. The machinery is designed to be easily transported to any desired construction site.
Known as the UVLightBoard, this device features a glassy, transparent panel over what appears to be a normal keyboard. The glass panel contains minute structures that provide just enough illumination to see all of the keys clearly regardless of the intensity of the light in a room. However, these structure emit ultraviolet light that reportedly kills microbes on the panel’s surface. Mu-Chern Fong shares that the idea for the unique peripheral came after learning just how unsanitary keyboard surfaces become with extensive use.
Computerized Age Analysis
Imagine a computer having the ability to analyze the photograph of someone and using the person’s appearance to calculate his or her age, and then estimating a potential long-term lifespan. Researchers at the University of Illinois in Chicago are in the process of developing technology that performs this task. While facial recognition is currently used for a number of applications, longevity studies are a fairly new science. According to an article published by the Concord Monitor, scientists begin by scanning a photograph, after which the software takes over. It plots hundreds of points across the face, connects the points and creates an algorithm based on typical aging features. The analysis then assigns a specific age to six different facial locations, which it uses to provide an estimated age of the person in the photograph. The technology may one day serve as a preventive technique to influence people to alter their unhealthy habits.