Tag Archives: awesome

Has The Star Trek Tricorder Finally Arrived?

16 Apr
*SQUEEEEE*
OMG OMG OMG OMG
I want it.
I want it now.
Live long and prosper, fellow nerds

By Frank SimonsPosted 2012/04/13 at 4:56 pm EDT

LOS ANGELES, Apr. 13, 2012 (Reuters) — Starships, warp speed, transporters, phasers. Think “Star Trek” technology is only the stuff of fiction? Think again.

Dr. Peter Jansen, a PhD graduate of the Cognitive Science Laboratory at McMaster University in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada, has developed a scientific measurement device based on the tricorders used by Captain Kirk, Spock, Dr. McCoy and other space adventurers on the classic TV series that has spawned numerous spin-offs in more than 45 years.

“Star Trek inspired me to be a scientist” said Jansen, who has been formally working on his tricorder prototypes since 2007, but toying with the idea of making a functioning device since he was “a kid in high school.” The 29-year-old Jansen’s school days spanned the late 1990s when “Star Trek: Voyager” was on the air. It featured his favorite tricorder, a model with screens on top and bottom. The first tricorder appeared on the original show’s initial episode in 1966, when Capt. Kirk swaggered toward audiences with his phaser weapon holstered to his side but a tricorder in his hand. The hand-held devices for data sensing, analysis and recording, have been a part of “Star Trek” ever since. But if Jansen, a self-confessed “addicted maker” of things, is successful at developing, testing and bringing his instrument into the public, the tricorder may not be just the stuff of “Star Trek” prop rooms. It may be used for real. Jansen said his tricorder can take atmospheric measurements, or ambient temperature, pressure or humidity. It can take electromagnetic measurements to test magnetic fields, and it can make spatial measurements of distance, location, or motion.

 Fascinating, as Spock might say.

Jansen thinks of his tricorder as a “general tool” — a kind of “Swiss Army Knife” — with practical uses in building inspection, for instance, where it might help taking temperature and humidity readings or be a distance sensor to measure rooms. It resembles the device carried by countless “Away Team” members in “Star Trek – The Next Generation” – his favorite of the “Star Trek” shows, he notes.

NO SCIENCE FICTION

No independent group has yet verified his claims for the device which, he said, is one reason for placing his designs on a public website as an “open source” that technology makers can utilize to test and tinker. Jansen has posted schematics and designs of his first and second prototypes, the Mark 1 and Mark 2, for anyone to see and build. Jansen expects to have his latest version, the Mark 4, produced for “about $200.”

Everything you need to build one is online at www.tricorderproject.org, according Jansen. He hopes others will follow his lead.

While it may sound like the stuff of science fiction, Jansen isn’t the only one to take notice of just how useful a real functioning tricorder would be – especially as a medical tool. Telecommunications giant Qualcomm Inc this year launched the “Tricorder X-Prize Contest” with the slogan “Healthcare in the palm of your hand.” Qualcomm hopes to motivate developers with a $10 million prize to make medical tricorders a reality.  Wanda Moebus of the Advanced Medical Technology Association, who is not affiliated with Jansen or Qualcomm, told Reuters the X-Prize “is really cool,” but cautioned that making a real medical tricorder device “would have to be measured on its safety and effect, like all other medical technologies.” Jansen said he has been approached by “a couple of teams” about the X Prize, but added that his prototypes are more for science research than medical tools.

Besides, he said he already is on to his next frontier, making a sort of “replicator,” another “Star Trek” device that will create 3D objects and foods that are dimensional copies of real items. Jansen’s “replicator” is a 3D printer, which in itself is not really new, but the scientist thinks about it in terms reminiscent of “Star Trek’s” famous prologue. It’s “like nothing we’ve ever seen before,” Jansen said.

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Science Last Supper

14 Apr

Vintage Spock

8 Apr

You Will Never See Mold The Same Way Again

5 Apr


This video is mind-blowing in it’s quality and dedication. Many of these molds take days or even weeks to grow, and all such organisms, due to their spore-forming nature, must be handled in a designated Class III lab. This wasn’t some bored dude in his kitchen, this was a person with access to a designated space and a great talent for videography.

Lego Jewelry

2 Apr

These adorable little lego delights are the brainchild of Jacqueline Sanchez, as part of her charmingly named “Forever Young” collection.
A classy gift this is sure to appease your significant other’s inner child.
❤ ❤ ❤


 

Knitted Gnome Sodomy

1 Apr

This past week has been my birthday week, and full of awesome shenanigans as well as continuing packing and preparing for the move. My apartment is full of boxes, my tummy is full of microbrew and strawberry-rhubarb pie, and my brain is exploding with happiness.
But before I curl up in bed, I can’t resist sharing the wonderful presents I received tonight from my dear friend Margherita, who is a yarn genius and a connoisseur of cute.

Knowing that I am absolutely in love with blood, particularly red blood cells, she knit me a tiny RBC:

 I shall call him Eric the Erythrocyte!

She also made me 10 gnome minions!

I absolutely love gnomes!
They have beards, which I’ve always had a weakness for, and are kind of creepy, but in an cute way.
(Like me!)
When I was a teenager, while all the other girls dreamed of marriage and children, I dreamed of being a part of the Garden Gnome Liberation Front. (aka the Front pour la Libération des Nains de Jardin. The French are weird in an oddly lovable way, and fifteen-year-old me believed that stolen gnomes were essentially catnip for French people).

If you look closely, you’ll see that one of the gnomes (lower left) has a red beard.
Ginger gnome!
And another (lower right) is missing his shirt.
And one of the gnomes (on the very top) is completely nude.

Newton, The Nudist Gnome!
I plan to let him go skinny dipping in my sink.
Fortunately, his beard is long enough to allow for some modesty, though Margherita admitted that she was tempted to make him anatomically correct.

And two gnomes are engaging in what has to be the most adorable depiction of sodomy I’ve ever seen.
Gnome sex has never been so cute.
Which is really saying something, as tiny gnome sex is already pretty damn adorable.

Also, to top things off, she made me an itty bitty narwhal named Natalie:

*squeeee!*

Star Trek Amigurumi

30 Mar

*Sigh*
One day my crochet and knitting skills will be good enough to do uber nerdy awesome stuff like this.
But for now I’ll stick to crocheting scarves and jellyfish.
(via Jana Ford Knits)