Monthly Archives: December 2012

NASA’s new Space suit will take you to Infinity and Beyond!

NASA spacesuit

NASA have unveiled their new prototype space suit, the Z-1. As you can see there is a little bit of Buzz Lightyear to it.

The new suit is a lot more mobile than previous space suits. It also has a large port on the back which means it is easier to put on and take off. The port also docks with a spacecraft or space station meaning there is no need for an airlock.

It has been designed to suit a number of different mission types.

The Z-1 prototype suit is also mobile. Bearings in the suit’s joints will give astronauts the flexibility to hop over lunar or martian soil with more grace than the explorers who wore older NASA exosuits. But the basic technology remains the same as existing space suits, meaning astronauts will still fight against the balloons of air inside their suits to move, expending extra energy with every step or bend of the arm. Of course, since those balloons of air are keeping them alive, the trade-off is worthwhile.

A focus on radiation protection will make the Z-1 suitable for longer spacewalks, but there’s a good chance NASA’s astronauts will look little like Buzz Lightyear by the time they actually were the next-generation suit into space. Despite being named one of Times’ best inventions of the year, Z-1 is just a prototype that NASA will be building on with Z-2 and Z-3 revisions. NASA recently finished testing the suit, which means work on the Z-2 can’t be far off.

It is great that NASA are pushing forward with a new space suit. Doing this shows they are still planning on the exploration of space which will benefit all of us and help push forward many different aspects of design and technology.

NASA plans to have the Z-3 spaceworthy and up on the ISS by 2017.

Source: Tested


Printable Christmas Wrapping Paper

free-paper-1Christmas is fast approaching. There is still time to buy presents.

Should find yourself in need of wrapping paper on Christmas Eve or you just like a bit of retro video game goodness then these printable wrapping paper patterns may be just what you need.

Kate Lilley over at MiniEco worked her cross stitch style magic to put them together.

The designs will print out nicely onto A4 paper and are only suitable for little gifts (but we all know the best things come in small packages).

Google’s Top 10 most searched things during 2012

Google Logo


The year is almost over so Google have pulled together the most searched things during the year. They had 1.2 trillion searches during the year.

Here is the Top 10 ranking for the World:

  1. Whitney Houston
  2. Gangnam Style
  3. Hurricane Sandy
  4. iPad 3
  5. Diablo 3
  6. Kate Middleton
  7. Olympics 2012
  8. Amanda Todd
  9. Michael Clarke Duncan
  10. BBB12

Looking at the UK the results are a bit different:

  1. Euro 2012
  2. Olympic tickets
  3. Whitney Houston
  4. Kate Middleton
  5. April Jones
  6. Netflix
  7. Natwest Online
  8. iPad 3
  9. Gary Barlow
  10. Gangnam Style

Then we have the Top 10 most searched items of consumer electronics:

  1. iPad 3
  2. Samsung Galaxy S3
  3. iPad Mini
  4. Nexus 7
  5. Galaxy Note 2
  6. Play Station
  7. iPad 4
  8. Microsoft Surface
  9. Kindle Fire
  10. Nokia Lumia 920


They also put together this video – Zeitgeist 2012: Year In Review

You can see all the lists here.

Contact Lenses with an LCD display

LCD contact lensThe World of Science Fiction gets another step closer to reality.

Ghent University’s centre of microsystems technology has developed a spherical curved LCD display which can be embedded in contact lenses and handle projected images using wireless technology.

“Now that we have established the basic technology, we can start working towards real applications, possibly available in only a few years,” said Professor Herbert De Smet.

“This is not science fiction,” said Jelle De Smet, the chief researcher on the project, who believes commercial applications for the lenses will be available within five years.

“This will never replace the cinema screen for films. But for specific applications it may be interesting to show images such as road directions or projecting text messages from our smart phones straight to our eye.”

The innovation is the first step towards “fully pixelated contact lens displays” with the same detail as a television screen.

Other applications for the technology include:

  • One pixel, fully covered contact lens acting as adaptable sunglasses.
  • Controlling the light transmission toward the eye’s retina in case of a damaged iris for medical purposes.
  • Changing the colour of the iris allowing the user to change it to suit their mood.

It is still early days for the technology, but there is an awful lot of potential.

Source: Telegraph

Apple CEO Tim Cook talks about building Mac computers in the USA

tim cook appleIn Timothy D. Cook’s first television interview since taking over from, Steve Jobs, he talks about Apple’s plans including building a line of Mac computers in the USA.

Cook, who joined Apple in 1998, said he believes it’s important to bring more jobs to the United States. Apple would not reveal where exactly the Macs will be manufactured.

“When you back up and look at Apple’s effect on job creation in the United States, we estimate that we’ve created more than 600,000 jobs now,” said Cook.

“I loved Steve dearly, and miss him dearly,” Cook told NBC’s Brian Williams. “And one of the things he did for me, that removed a gigantic burden that would have normally existed, is he told me, on a couple of occasions before he passed away, to never question what he would have done. Never ask the question, ‘What Steve would do,’ to just do what’s right.”

Apple today is worth about 43 percent more than when Cook took over.

Visit for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy


John McAfee may have been arrested

mcafeeJohn McAfee is the American computer programmer and founder of McAfee. You will probably have heard of him as he was one of the first people to design anti-virus software and to develop a virus scanner.

He was recently wanted for questioning with regards the murder of his neighbour, Greg Faull. Since then he keeps saying he innocent and then left the country to avoid the authorities. McAfee said he went into hiding so he could stay close to his Belize home and conduct his own investigation into Mr Faull’s death, adding that he had little faith that the island’s police would find the murderer.

In an interview with US TV station NBC, Mr McAfee offered a reward of $25,000 (£15,700) for the capture of the “person or persons” behind the killing.

He has now apparently been arrested by police in Guatemala on Wednesday for being in the country illegally. McAfee was seeking political asylum there.

He was travelling with Robert King, a Vice photographer, who first reported he was detained. It also looks as if King accidentally contributed to McAfee’s capture by posting a photo on the internet that contained location data.

Guatemalan Interior Minister Mauricio Lopez Bonilla said Mr McAfee was arrested at a hotel in the capital, Guatemala City.

However, the Daily Mail report that this is not quite true.

Belize national police confirmed to MailOnline on Sunday that the whereabouts of the multimillionaire software developer are still unknown.

Additionally, authorities have issued no arrest warrant in the murder of Gregory Faull.

However, a post McAfee’sblog is apparently from him while in jail.

I am in jail in Guatemala. Vastly superior to Belize jails. I asked for a computer and one magically appeared. The coffee is also excellent.

Only time will tell what will happen. No one has a crystal ball. However, I would be truly shocked if I did not conduct the press conference tomorrow as I had originally planned.

Stay tuned.

I believe, by the way, that blogging from a jail cell might be a groundbreaking activity. Let’s see if it catches on.


It appears this odd story will keep getting stranger.

Source: BBC, Wired