Would You Drink a Cup of Your Own Sweat?

sweat-machine-3-640x552 Would You Drink a Cup of Your Own Sweat?

Recently, engineers were commissioned by Unicef to build something a bit different. Andreas Hammar headed a project which would be called the stomach turning name of Sweat Machine. This odd machine purifies body sweat into potable drinking water.

The machine uses a unique technology for filtering, called Membrane Distillation. The technology was developed by the Royal Institute of Technology in Stockholm and HVR.

It works by using a plastic cassette, where water is filtered by heating it into vapor and then circulating that vapor between two membranes. The end result is a separation process that effectively removes the impurities and turns a sweat soaked T-shirt into as much .4 fl oz of drinking water.

Why the hell would anyone want to make such a machine? According to deputy executive director of UNICEF Sweden, Per Westberg:

“We wanted to raise this subject in a new, playful, and engaging way.”

More than 780 million people lack access to clean drinking water, so anything to bring attention towards this issue is a good thing. Of course, Unicef doesn’t necessarily expect the world’s water shortage problems to be solved by drinking sweat, but it’s certainly a good way to send a clear message.

If you really want to make an impression, you have to do more than build a machine. That’s why Unicef set the machine up at the Gothia Cup for international youth soccer. There, more than 1000 people managed to have a taste of delicious, purified sweat.

In the end, there are more effective ways to deal with water purification and shortages than turning sweat into drinkable water, but you still have to applaud the efforts of the creators behind this truly unique device.

Source 1: Gizmag
Source 2: CNET News

Nokia Taking HTC to Court Over Patent Violations

nok-log-640x359 Nokia Taking HTC to Court Over Patent Violations

If you have ever looked at technology patents, they are pretty vague and most of the time describe something that may not even be possible.  Software patents are no different, there are countless vaguely written patents currently filed and owned by various technology companies. Finland based Nokia is the newest company to go after the Taiwanese phone manufacturer HTC for alleged patent violations.

If this sounds like old news, it’s because it is.  This is a tactic used by most all phone companies to make little jabs at the competitors and play a little dirty business.  Apple did the same thing against HTC last year when it was at war with Samsung.

This particular “violation” is in reference to three different patents for a “terminal, method and computer program product for interacting with a signaling tag.”

Clear as mud, right?  So you may ask yourself, what is Nokia trying to gain by pulling HTC into a long drawn out court battle?  Money.  That’s the long and the short of it, it is far more costly for companies to spend years in court fighting than to throw some settlement money at the petitioner.  Nokia is just attempting to boost its books for its stock holders.  Down side is, as everyone knows in business, expenses get passed to consumers.  So these dirty business tactics are only hurting you and me, the buyers.

There are some obvious flaws in the United States and European patent laws, and until those laws get changed, this kind of cheap trickery is going to continue. What do you think of this latest patent lawsuit? Let us know in the comment section below.

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Recon Instruments Create Android Powered Sunglasses

Recon-Jet_white_front-640x320 Recon Instruments Create Android Powered Sunglasses

While Google Glass is a leader in its field, it lacks on one thing: attraction and applicability to that of sports and athletes.  While it is water resistant, it is not the toughest of products and probably wouldn’t hold up to someone dripping sweat for long periods of time.  Recon Instruments saw the obvious hole in the market and developed the Jet.  The Jet is a pair of sport sunglasses with an integrated Android powered display that has an endless amount of possibilities.

Recon, previously known for its MOD ski goggle inserts, takes the idea one step further and applies the same technology to a sporting pair of shades with a list of supped up features.  They also added a huge amount of connectivity options and sensors, it comes with WiFi, Bluetooth, an accelerometer, thermometer, GPS and most exciting, ANT+.  These features will allow the shades to gather data from different capturing sources such as heart rate monitors, cycling power and cadence.

Strava users will be chomping at the bit to get this technology with the ability to get real-time displays of everything they desire.  Engaget tried a pair of prototypes and described the glasses as a bit flimsy and stating they had a difficult time seeing the display.  But keep in mind this was a pre-production prototype and I’m sure they will work out some of the bugs and finalize a marketable product.  The removable battery is said to have a projected life of six hours, way more than I would need to get winded!

The Recon Instruments Jet is set to ship by the end of the year and we have no official release of expected price, though some speculation it will cost around $500 — give or take a hundred or so.  Seems a bit steep, but those that already spend thousands on their bikes and gear will have no problem dropping that much for the real-time applications and training possibilities.

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Scientists Find 2.6 Billion Year Old Pocket of Water

underwater-640x426 Scientists Find 2.6 Billion Year Old Pocket of Water

Recently near Timmins, Ontario Canada, researchers found a small pocket of water that is estimated to be 2.64 billion years old.  The water was found one and a half miles below the earth’s surface, in the oldest known part of the North American crust, the Canadian Shield.  The depth of this pocket of water is the exciting part due to the fact that it was left untouched and untampered with by standard erosion and seismic activity, which means this pocket of water contains the gasses from that period 2 and a half billions years ago, giving us a glimpse at environmental conditions of ancient Earth.

However rather than just teaching us about the Earth’s past, it makes scientists excited over the possibility that there also could be untouched pockets of water on Mars.  The researchers found the Timmins pocket had as much hydrogen gas the water found within hydrothermal vents.  That level of hydrogen has been known for creating unique ecosystems that thrive in strange and harsh environments.  This information could definitely be used to advance scientists beliefs that there could be alien life living under the surface of mars.

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Nvidia Shield Pre-Sales Begin Today

nvidia-shield-gaming-640x341 Nvidia Shield Pre-Sales Begin Today

The Nvidia’s Android powered handheld console, Shield, which we originally revealed in February of this year, has finally begun taking preorders today for its upcoming June release.  The original pre-order date was the 20th of May, but apparently has been bumped up.  The device has a reasonable $349 price, and pre-orders can be made directly to Nvidia or from participating retailers such as Gamestop, Newegg and Canada Computer.

Shield will come with full Google Play access as well as a myriad of different add ons such as TwitchTV, Hulu Plus, TegraZone, Expendable: Rearmed and Sonic 4 Episode II THD.  Nvidia stated that growing buzz for the device was the reason for the bumped up pre-sale date.  More likely they wanted to space themselves a bit from Microsoft’s reveal of it’s new next gen Xbox on Tuesday the 21st.  Either way, this device deserves a bit of it’s own time in the spotlight.

If you haven’t yet, check it out and get yours ordered today!

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