Battlefield medics and paramedics rely on chemical-infused bandages to help stem blood loss and treat wounds. However, the blood itself is frequently their worst enemy — it takes those chemicals away from where they’re needed. Those first responders may soon have a much smarter solution, though. Researchers have developed bandages with a combination of powdered marble, acid and enzymes that fizzes on contact with blood, using the resulting bubbles to transport microparticles toward deeper vessels that need clotting. The particles currently travel in all directions, but scientists envision using an endoscope to send the fizz to where it’s most useful.
The technique has only been tested in the lab so far. You may be waiting a while before you see these gas-powered patches in the wild, in other words. Suffice it to say that they could be lifesavers, especially for soldiers who may have no quick access to a hospital. The augmented bandages would not only heal wounds faster, but reduce the chances of complications that might prove deadly.
[Image credit: Getty Images/Flickr RF]
Source: Science Advances
This year’s Nexus 6P is a whole new ballgame for the Nexus line. Last year’s Nexus 6, which was made by Motorola, had a large bulky body that felt massive in the hand for many. The Nexus 6P changes that by featuring a slightly smaller display and a better screen-to-body ratio. It actually feels compact in the hand. And perhaps more importantly, the device comes with specifications that best or match other flagships while being packed within an all-metal design.
The Nexus 6P runs Google’s newest version of Android — Android 6.0 Marshmallow — right out of the box. It has an improved 12.3MP camera, a 5.7-inch Quad HD (2560×1440) AMOLED display, a snappy Snapdragon 810 v2.1 processor, and a slew of new software tricks. The Nexus 6P is a worthy update over its predecessor, and brings a whole new sense of hardware to the market. But, as always, a phone can never be perfect and really depends on one’s personal preferences. So here are six features that Google and Huawei left out of the Nexus 6P.
A non-protruding camera
The Nexus 6P features an all-metal unibody design that’s nice excluding one part. On the rear of the device lies a black strip covered in Gorilla Glass containing various sensors as well as a protruding camera. Although great that Google included all these various types of sensors, the company apparently had no other place to put them but along the top rear side of the device. Along the black strip, you’ll see the camera lens, dual-LED tone flash and laser auto-focus sensor. The strip is also reported to include a number of other sensors. Other than the top bar which can’t be covered with a case, the design is pretty elegant and attractive. Let’s hope next time Google finds how to integrate these various sensors without having to create a large hump at the back.
Additional color options
Moto Maker allows buyers to customize their Motorola device with different designs by changing colors, materials, and textures. So why can’t Google do this? Currently for the Nexus 6P, there only three color options — Graphite, Frost and Aluminum. In Japan, buyers will get an additional gold color option. Hopefully further down the road we’ll see Google do something along the lines of Motorola and create a bevy of design choices.
Dual-SIM card compatibility
The ability to use two SIM cards in a single device is becoming more common among recent handsets. Unfortunately, for the Nexus 6P, Google decided one was enough. This has been a welcoming feature among some new devices and would have been a real treat if Google decided to provide us with it. But for now, if you have a work phone and a personal cell and want to the Nexus 6P, you’ll have to deal with carrying two phones around.
The Nexus 6P includes 3GB of RAM; however, extra RAM is always convenient. Soon 4GB of RAM will become the norm for Android flagships. I have a feeling that many upgrading early next year may discredit the Nexus 6P for having only 3GB. Luckily, with Marshmallow, Google has implemented improvements regarding RAM management and we hope this makes a noticeable difference.
Water and dust resistance
Google has been silent when it comes to IP ratings. I’m sure more users would jump on the Nexus train if they found out the devices had included water and dust resistance. While this is yet to become mainstream with Android flagships, many are trying it out with separate rugged variants so why not give it a try?
Built-in IR blaster
Built-in IR blasters aren’t getting as much attention as they used to, but it would still be a nice addition to the Nexus lineup. With a built-in IR blaster, users can control their televisions or other equipment with their smartphone. We haven’t seen this features appear on a Nexus device yet, but heck, you never know when Google may include it.
Overall, the Nexus 6P is a great flagship for anyone looking to get a clean and simplified experience. The Nexus 6P doesn’t go overboard and focuses more on perfecting what matters. Although the features mentioned above may have been great additions, it’s the lack of them that makes the Nexus series what it is. Any of them being added to the Nexus 6P would have likely raised its starting price of $499.
Come comment on this article: What could have improved the Nexus 6P?
There’s a reason why the #freethenipple campaign blew up on Instagram: the photo-sharing website is typically quick to pull down posts showing women’s nipples, even if there’s nothing pornographic about the photos. Why? Well, according to Business Insider, the app’s cofounder puts the blame on Apple. Instagram CEO Kevyn Systrom explained his Facebook-owned company’s side during a talk in London, claiming that its guidelines can’t be changed due to Apple’s age rating. Since IG wants to retain its current 12+ rating in order to have a wider audience — only rated 17+ apps are allowed to feature explicit content — it has to continue taking down posts that showcase nudity.
It’s worth noting, however, that photos showing men’s nipples don’t get deleted, and a quick search on the app using the right keywords will surface truly pornographic posts. Mic also pointed out that Twitter’s full of porn accounts and posts despite its 4+-year-old rating, but Apple hasn’t kicked it off the App Store yet. A number of celebrities helped the #freethenipple campaign take off on Instagram, some even posting topless photos of themselves. They include comedian/host Chelsea Handler, pop star Miley Cyrus and models Chrissy Teigen and Naomi Campbell, whose magazine photo with fully visible nipples stayed up for 20 hours before the app pulled it down.
[Image credit: PhotoObjects.net/Getty]
It’s Sunday, the time of the week when Talk Android brings you a report on some of the very best applications we’ve been using over the course of the past seven days. Today we’re focusing our attention on an ultra-reliable media player, a fantastic food ordering service, a useful movie referencing app and a great tool for anyone who has use of a PlayStation 4.
VLC for Android
Up first this week we have VLC for Android, which is a must-have app for anyone who uses their Android-powered smartphone or tablet as a portable media player. I’ve been using this platform for a while now, and I can honestly say that I have not encountered any issues.
Not only is the application extremely fast and stable, it also supports a ton of universal video and audio formats, including MKV, MP4, AVI, MOV, Ogg, FLAC, TS, M2TS and AAC. All the codecs are bundled into the APK, too — so you don’t have to waste any time installing separate downloads.
There’s even a dedicated widget for those who use VLC primarily for audio playback. This enables the widget adoptees to scan through their library and play a song direct from their home screen. I’ve never actually used this feature as I use Spotify for all my audio-related needs, but from what I’ve seen in my widget drawer, it looks pretty good.
To really get to grips with VLC for Android, you have to see it in action, so be sure to check out the gallery below.
This past week, I’ve been getting home rather late and haven’t been able to muster the energy to cook, so, consequently, I’ve been ordering quite a lot of takeouts. However, I decided to steer away from the traditional method of browsing through a paper menu, noting my order, then phoning the restaurant. Instead, I’ve been using JUST EAT.
The service is free and works flawlessly. First, users input their postcode and a multitude of local takeaways of varying cuisines miraculously appear. Once users have found a restaurant that takes their fancy, they simply browse the menu on their handset adding food to the basket along the way. Once done, they have the facility to pay for the order on their phone or upon delivery.
To see JUST EAT in action, take a look at the promotional video below.
IMDb Movies & TV
If like me you have a fondness of being kept up-to-date with all the latest and greatest from the film and TV industry, then you’ll love this application. IMDb is the world’s largest collector of all cinematographic references — so if you’re looking to view a new trailer, want to find out some fun-facts about your favorite movie or simply want to read about an unseen title, this is the perfect service for you.
Once you’ve downloaded IMDb for Android, you’ll have instant access to comprehensive fact files for over two-million movie and TV titles all containing plot breakdowns, critics/user reviews and interesting facts. I found myself turning to this app when I came home to an abundance of recorded TV shows after being away for a while that I just couldn’t be bothered to watch, I deleted them, read through a few quick summary’s so that I was kept in the loop for the next episode.
If you’re scouting for a new film to watch, you’ll be right at home in the Popular Charts section of IMDB, which lets you browse through the top-rated titles in the following categories:
- Best Picture – award winners
- Top rated movies of all time (IMDb Top 250)
- Most popular movies of the day on IMDb (MOVIEmeter)
- Most popular celebrities of the day on IMDb (STARmeter)
- Lowest rated movies of all time (IMDb Bottom 100)
- Most popular TV shows
Be sure to take a look through the gallery below to get a feel for all of IMDb’s features.
The final app we’re looking at this week is the official PlayStation client for Android, which is great for anyone with a PS4. The application gives users the facility to stay connected to their gaming friends on the go. You’ll be able to see what your mates are playing, compare trophies and chat in real-time.
My favored feature is the in-app second-screen functionality, which enables you to use your smartphone or tablet as a second display when playing compatible games on your PS4. This is particularly useful if you’re playing an action-shooter as you can display a larger version of the mini-map on your mobile device.
To see the application from all-angles, check out the gallery below.
Previous Apps of the Week editions:
Come comment on this article: Talk Android Apps of the Week: October 4, 2015
By Adele Peters
This article originally appeared on Fast Company and is reprinted with permission.
Electric cars might be sexier. But Ryan Popple, who was an early employee at Tesla, is now convinced that electric buses are more interesting.Slideshow-324933
Proterra, the startup Popple runs, designed a sleek new electric bus that drove 258 miles on a single charge in a recent test. That’s farther than most tiny electric cars can go and also farther than a daily city bus route.
That means it’s ready to start to replace the hundreds of thousands of diesel buses in the country, most of which average less than five miles to the gallon and pump out carbon pollution, soot, and carcinogens like arsenic.
Because the bus saves on fuel, it’s actually cheaper over a lifetime of use than alternatives, including hybrid-diesel buses or those running on natural gas. And it’s something that anyone can use, democratizing the most advanced alternative transportation technology.
“We’re taking a technology that’s used to power $100,000 sports cars, and we’re putting it into the absolute most accessible transportation asset in the country,” says Popple.
Like Tesla, Proterra designed its vehicle from scratch. “I think it’s important to cut ties with the legacy technology,” he says. “If you tell your engineering group one of the rules they have to stick by is they have to use all the old parts from the parts bin, you’re going to end up with a terrible product.”
Because electric vehicles work in a fundamentally different way than something that runs on gas or diesel, the old designs don’t make sense. The engine is no longer the heaviest part, and you don’t have to worry about exhaust or a tank of flammable liquid. New parts—like battery packs—need to go in different places.
Some parts of the new design that were optimized for electricity also have other advantages. The bus is made from carbon fiber so it’s ultra-lightweight, so the battery system doesn’t have to be as big. But because it isn’t made of metal, it also doesn’t rust and lasts longer on the road. The weight is distributed more evenly than on a regular bus, so it’s also better at acceleration and turning.
It’s even easier to manufacture. “Long term, we have a huge advantage over steel bus manufacturers,” Popple says. “They’re building buses like you’d build a house. They build a steel frame, they rivet things onto it. At our factory, we take in a composite body just like an aircraft fuselage.”
An earlier model of the bus, designed for airports or other short routes, only went 30 miles on a charge; a special battery inside could recharge in just 10 minutes. The new version uses the same technology that cars like Tesla use for long-range storage.
In the recent test, the company was hoping that the new bus would drive 200 miles on the track. But it did more than 50 miles extra, and the designers say it will keep improving. “The next milestone I think we’ll hit is 300,” says Popple.
In real conditions—loaded with passengers, on rough roads, and different weather—it won’t go as far. But it only needs to go about 130 miles to cover an average bus route. Then the bus can charge at night. It’s also designed to plug into the fast chargers that cities may have already installed along some routes.
“We think we’ve now hit the range that really removes any sort of range anxiety,” Popple says. “There’s no physical reason why you couldn’t deploy zero-emission, quiet, high-tech buses.”
As the battery technology improves, cities can swap in upgrades. The first buses will be sold next year to Foothill Transit, which runs routes in Southern California. Five or six years later, by the time the batteries need to be replaced, the replacements may have a range that’s 100 miles or more better.
Popple is convinced that every bus will eventually run on electricity, and the question is just how soon that can happen.
“The business case works today for replacing diesel with electric, but the scale of the problem is so big,” he says. “There are diesel bus companies that build 50 buses a week. We can get there—Tesla grew from building a couple cars a week to today a hundred or 200 cars a day. We know technology companies can scale faster than anyone ever expected.”
Right now, he talking to a number of U.S. transit agencies. In five years, he hopes he can reach all of them. “We want to talk to that last agency that’s about to buy that last set of diesel buses,” he says.
He’s most excited about the fact that the bus brings clean tech to everyone, rathern than making it a luxury item. When the oil industry recently rolled out a PR campaign fighting higher gas prices in California—saying that it would hurt lower-income families—Popple started thinking that the argument needed to change.
“I don’t know why we’re encouraging people to buy cars,” he says. “It’s a terrible investment, you’re exposed to oil prices, you have insurance costs. What we should be doing is putting out low carbon mass transit, and helping people get back to work for pennies a day as opposed to dollars.”
[All Images: via Proterra]
More from Fast Company:
Such an eventful week! Besides NASA finding water on Mars, Apple releasing El Capitan and Experian exposing data on 15 million T-Mobile users, we saw journeys of unprecedented distance. And don’t forget these impressive iPhone battery life savings thanks to ad blockers, or this soul-crushing Super Mario Bros. editor.
Each week our friends at Inhabitat recap the week’s most interesting green developments and clean tech news for us — it’s the Week in Green.
After three years of anticipation Tesla just launched its latest electric car. The company says the Model X is the world’s safest SUV; it can go from 0-60 in 3.2 seconds; and it comes with a “bioweapon defense mode” in case of… well, the apocalypse. Meanwhile the Volkswagen emissions scandal continues to develop, and this past week, we asked just how many people have died due to pollution emitted by affected vehicles. Perhaps the worst part is that Volkswagen may actually avoid criminal charges due to a loophole in the Clean Air Act.
Mars made headlines last week as NASA announced the discovery of flowing water and unveiled a series of 3D-printed homes that could be built on the red planet. Renowned architecture firm Foster + Partners proposed an extraplanetary home that could be built by robots, while SEArch and Clouds AO designed a 3D-printed space igloo made from ice. In other outlandish architecture news, Dubai is building underwater villas that let you sleep with the fishes, and we threw shade on the Kokomo Ailand — a self-propelled floating island for the 1 percent.
Scientists made a big breakthrough for solar energy this week by developing a device that turns light directly into electricity. But what if you could harvest energy from thin air? That’s exactly what the Freevolt proposes to do. We also showed you how to build your own solar concentrator at home so that you can cook with the power of the sun. Finally, in wearable technology news, MIT launched a call for innovative textiles that fight climate change and Adidas is making a zero-waste soccer cleat that is endlessly recyclable.
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It’s often interesting to see how audio manufacturers try to make their headphones feel more premium – some brands add weight to their headphones; some make their headphones from metal. Others, like Grain Audio, make their headphones partly from wood, which sounds unusual, but we had to take a look and see what was what – here’s our review of the Grain Audio Over-the-Ear Headphones.
What’s in the box
Inside a box that appears to be made from recycled materials, you’ll find the headphones themselves, a 3.5mm-to-3.5mm audio cable that includes an in-line microphone, a 3.5mm-to-6.5mm adapter and a loose-fitting, soft carry bag for everything that you can see.
“It’s wonderful stuff. There’s a reason it’s used in its solid form on the best acoustic instruments in the world… It just sounds better.”
Sounds good to me. You’ll find the wood parts of the Over-the-Ear Headphones (we’ll just call them the OEHP) encapsulating the ear cups, matching its dark, oiled walnut with a grey-blue plastic that makes up the only other colour on the headset. It’s unusual pairing, but what really matters, of course, is how it sounds – more on that later. Overall, the headphones are incredibly light, thanks to the wood and plastic, and while it doesn’t feel particularly sturdy, it’s well put together and has survived several weeks of my manhandling. Of course, having a bag always helps in that regard, and the frankly huge bag that you get with the OEHP has more than enough space for you to hurriedly cram your cans inside them if you’re in a rush.
- 2x40mm proprietary loudspeakers featuring Neodymium magnets and a CCAW voice coil
- 15 Hz to 20 kHz frequency response
The OEHP retails for $199.99 USD, which might seem a little expensive, but these headphones are aimed right at the audiophile audience. All through its marketing, Grain Audio makes a big deal of “hearing your music as the artist intended- no fake bass boost, no weird mid-range, just pure, natural sound.” That sounds great in theory, but how does it actually do? Well, I’m glad you asked.
How does it perform
If Grain Audio was aiming to achieve the clearest possible audio experience on a closed-back pair of headphones, they might just have achieved it – the OEHP are incredibly clear in all ranges. Listening to all genres of music was amazing, particularly more classical music like anything by Pentatonix or Edward Elgar’s Enigma Variations. Because everything is so well balanced, the bass might not be up to the thumping standards of some people, but that’s the price you pay for clarity everywhere else.
It should be noted that the OEHP doesn’t really come into its own until you really start cranking it up – though that’s more of a general rule to see how good a pair of headphones are. At these higher volumes, the OEHP really start to make sense – whether it’s the wood or its driver system, the OEHP really sound fantastic and that’s just being output from my Nexus 6.
Now onto comfort, and I know what you’ve been thinking – surely, with ear cushions that big, it has to be comfortable. And you would be right. At first, the leather ear cushions felt a little firm, but they’re definitely one of the most comfortable headphones I’ve ever had the pleasure of reviewing. The headband is similarly firm, but cushioning, and I’ve had no issues with extended listening sessions, even whole days at work with these on without the slightest kind of an ache – and I often have issues with long-term comfort with my large, large head.
What I like about the Grain Audio Over-the-Ear Headphones
I love the overall design of the OEHP – the use of wood really gives this set of headphones a personality, something which is desperately absent in many of the options available on the market. Whether it’s actually adding to the acoustic capabilities of the OEHP, I can’t exactly say, but it’s functional in so many ways, including making the headphones incredibly light, making them relatively travel-friendly.
Another thing that I love about the OEHP is how “no-frills” it is – it’s minimal and simple and it doesn’t pretend to be something it’s not. From the design to what comes in the box, it’s just simply what you need when you need it.
What I don’t like about the Grain Audio Over-the-Ear Headphones
To be completely honest, I’m not a huge fan of the OEHP’s colour coordination – the grey/blue and wood combination is a little jarring for me. It’s far from ugly, but I feel a black or dark brown would have looked really good, or even white or beige matched with the walnut. As I mentioned before, in the end, it really doesn’t matter how they look if you’re into headphones for how they sound, but it’s just a small thing I noticed.
The other thing that really bothered me about the OEHP is the side that the audio cable input is i.e. the right. Admittedly, I wouldn’t be able to tell you what side other audiophile headphones have their inputs on, but I know that most headphones I have previously reviewed have the input on the left, as opposed to the right. Of course, it’s definitely not a dealbreaker, but I was constantly reminded about this fact on a daily basis – I’m pedantic that way.
I didn’t really know what to expect coming into this review, but I can safely say that these Grain Audio Over-the-Ear Headphones have made a believe out of me. Fantastic audio, peerless comfort, novel design with what I think is a fair price, the OEHP are the real deal for anyone who is looking for something that looks unique and has the audio credentials to back it up. If that has you in the mood for some Grain Audio, you can find out more at the Grain Audio website.
Gallery of Photos
- Sounds fantastic
- Extremely comfortable
- Unique design
- Unusual colour combination
- Cable only goes in the right side
The post Grain Audio Over-the-Ear Headphones Review: Music with a touch of wood appeared first on AndroidSPIN.
Daimler’s dreams of self-driving big rig trucks just took one step closer to reality. The automaker has conducted the first-ever test of its semi-autonomous Highway Pilot system in a production truck on a public road, driving an augmented Mercedes-Benz Actros down Germany’s Autobahn 8. While the vehicle needed a crew to keep watch, it could steer itself down the highway using a combination of radar, a stereo camera array and off-the-shelf systems like adaptive cruise control. The dry run shows that the technology can work on just about any vehicle in the real world, not just one-off concepts.
This doesn’t mean you’ll see fleets of robotic trucks in the near future. Daimler had to get permission for this run, and the law (whether European or otherwise) still isn’t equipped to permit regular autonomous driving of any sort, let alone for giant cargo haulers. Still, this could make a better case for approving some form of self-driving transportation. Even though there’s still plenty of work left before this tech can handle any situation, it’s good enough that it can be trusted in run-of-the-mill vehicles at high speeds.
Android fans, this week brought us a ton of exciting stuff, starting of course with the new Nexus 5X and Nexus 6P. The general impression is great, but the new Nexuses are not without controversy. Moving on, Google also brought us the intriguing Pixel C, a revamped Chromecast, and the Chromecast Audio. In non-Google news, we went hands-on with the futuristic Wove band; HTC introduced a refreshed One M9+ and announced the launch event for the Aero; and LG introduced the durable V10 and LTE-enabled Watch Urbane 2nd edition.
Inside AA HQ
Nexus, Nexus, Nexus! We’re all true Android fans, but what’s the role of Nexus phones, besides fan service? There are a lot of theories. From taking Google’s words at face value (“a phone for developers,” “pushing the ecosystem forward”) to the more outlandish ideas (“Nexus phones are just ads”), people don’t seem to agree what the Nexus program’s role is today. That said, Nexus devices are, without doubt, important for the Android community, and that is why they hold a special place in our coverage. Check out Josh’s excellent hands-on and comparisons starring the Nexus 5X and 6P (and the Pixel C) and let us know what you think.
With the Nexus event over, it looks like the biggest releases of the year are behind us. HTC is still trying to save a bad year with the Aero, coming October 20. But as far as big phones come, we’re pretty much done. Keep an eye for our updated best smartphones ranking.
This week’s giveaway is special. We have three prizes up for grabs, and they are all extremely appealing: Galaxy Note 5, OnePlus 2, and Moto X Pure. Head over here to enter the contest and good luck!
The stuff you shouldn’t miss
- Comparison: Big phone comparison: Note 5 or Mate S – Gary weighs in
- Review: Smartwatches don’t have to be round to be cool. The ZenWatch 2 is proof
- Comparison: Mate S or Mate 7: two generations of the Mate series compared
- Video: Joe demoes Google Now on Tap, the biggest feature in Marshmallow
- Feature: The pricing of the Nexus got Europeans up in arms. Nirave looks for an explanation
- Tech talk: We’re already used to octa-core processors, but will the Snapdragon 820 end the madness?
- Review: Ash did a masterful review of the Moto X Play. Don’t miss it!
- How to: Is your battery charging too slowly? Here are some tips that might help
Top news of the week
Wove band: the future is flexible
- Video: Wove band puts a truly flexible e-ink display on your wrist
- Hands-on with the futuristic Wove Band
Nexus 5X: everything you need to know
- Nexus 5X officially announced: everything you need to know
- Nexus 5X vs Nexus 5 – quick look
- Nexus 6P vs Nexus 6 quick look
- Nexus 6P and 5X vs the competition
- Nexus 5X hands-on: a look at Google’s new affordable phone
Nexus 6P: everything you need to know
- Nexus 6P officially announced: everything you need to know
- Nexus 6P will cost just $500 in US, 650 Euros in Europe!
- Nexus 6P has the second best mobile camera (according to DxOMark)
- Googlers share impressive 240-fps slow-mo video and photos shot with Nexus 6P
Pixel C: out of the left field
- Google announces the Pixel C, a new 10.2-inch premium Android tablet aimed at productivity
- Google Pixel C hands-on and first look
HTC: a new hero is coming
- HTC announces One M9+ “Supreme Camera” Edition
- HTC launches the Butterfly 3 for international markets
- HTC says the One M9 and One M8 will see Android 6.0 Marshmallow by year’s end
- HTC’s next hero phone is launching October 20th, Marshmallow onboard
Chromecast: new and improved
- New Chromecast and Chromecast Audio: new features and design, for the same $35 price
- Chromecast support is finally making its way to Spotify
- Latest Chromecast app update brings content discovery, search functionality and more
LG V10: drop it like it’s hot
- LG V10 officially announced: everything you need to know
- LG V10 hands-on and first impressions
- LG V10 vs LG G4: quick look
- LG V10 durability drop test
Watch Urbane 2: Android Wear, now with LTE
- LG Watch Urbane 2 official: first Android Wear watch with cellular connectivity
- LG Watch Urbane 2nd Edition first look
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