Innovation

Acoustic Trap Display

Researchers at University of Sussex have developed an Acoustic Trap Display to create a holographic interface. The display uses an array of ultrasound speakers to levitate a white bead at fast speeds within a 3 dimensional plane. A laser array lights up the bead at high speed which tricks the eye into seeing a 3D display.

Project Silica

Microsoft and Warner brothers have create a pilot long term storage project called Microsoft Project Silica. The project uses a slide of 3 inch by 3 inch glass silica to store 75.6GB of data in 100+ layers of 3D voxels. The pilot project archived the 1978 Superman film onto a slide which will last 1000+ years.

Podcast Of The Week: The Blindboy Podcast - Science Week 2019

This week on his podcast, Blindboy interviewed Jerry Murphy and Clare Watson, two climate researchers working with the MaREI centre in UCC. The interview was part of Science Week 2019 and covers a range of topics about biofuel and how energy production can adapt locally in response to the climate crisis. The two scientists are currently working on a project on the Dingle Peninsula which uses locally produced biofuel to run a local transport bus.

Laser Voice Commands

Researchers from Tokyo and The University of Michigan have published a paper showing that it is possible to hijack voice assistants and issue commands using lasers pointed at the microphone. Commands can be issued from up to 350 feet away by vibrating the diaphragm of the device's microphone to simulate a real voice command. The research team successfully hijacked Google Home/Nest, Echo Plus/Show/Dot, Facebook Portal Mini, Fire Cube TV, EchoBee 4, iPhone XR, iPad 6th Gen, Samsung Galaxy S9 and Google Pixel 2 devices.

The Mysterious Uncrackable Video Game

On their quest to unearth lost video game coding secrets, researchers John Aycock and Tara Copplestone of the Universities of Calgary and York stumbled accross a piece of code from the 1982 Atari 2600 game Entombed which they could not reverse engineer. The video game archaeologists contacted employees involved in developing the game, and they too recalled not being able to decipher the logic behind a particular data table which was used to generative valid maze structures within the game.

3D Ken Burns Effect From Single Image

Researchers at Portland State University and Adobe have demonstrated being able to generate a 3D Ken Burns effect (parallax) using a single image. The system uses neural networks to generate depth predictions and object boundaries, and context aware in-painting to generate the missing pieces of the video to simluate a moving point of focus. We can tick another Star Trek TNG sci-fi concept off the list.

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