BMW Electrified Wingsuit lets you soar through the sky at 186 mph

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Everyone wants to know what it’s like to fly, and the BMW Electrified Wingsuit brings that fantasy to life. This concept product allows you to soar through the sky at 186 mph without any restrictions while offering a compact and light design. To make this possible, the electric wingsuit boasts BMW technology and uses a chest-mounted rig for power. It offers 15 kW of grunt between two carbon impellers.

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How far back in time could a modern English speaker go and still communicate?

 

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The transition from Old English to Modern English was a process, not an event

Changes in language don’t occur overnight, though slang terms come in and out of use relatively quickly and new words are invented while others fall into disuse. The rules of grammar you learned in school are the same ones your parents were taught and what your own kids will (or do) use. A few new words are tossed in the mix every few years to keep things interesting (remember the uproar when “ain’t” was added to the dictionary?).

The transition from Old English to Middle English to Modern English was a process rather than an event — the rules didn’t all suddenly change on May 24, 1503. Before the Normans invaded England in 1066, the people living in Britain spoke Old English or Anglo-Saxon. Some of the words from that time are still with us — the ones of the vulgar four-letter variety. Old English was so unlike Modern English it’s fair to view it as a foreign language. For example, here are the opening lines of the poem Beowulf:

Hwæt! Wé Gárdena in géardagum

þéodcyninga þrym gefrúnon

hú ðá æþelingas ellen fremedon.

I’m completely lost. Something about a garden, maybe?

Modern English translation as follows:

Listen! We — of the Spear-Danes in the days of yore,

of those clan-kings — heard of their glory,

how those nobles performed courageous deeds.

Yeah, not even close.

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Facebook wants to make thought-hearing glasses

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Plus smart glasses from Google, transforming drones, AR clothing and other patents from Big Tech.

It’s the weekend! Time to switch my digital avatar’s outfit from a suit to lounge pants. I don’t actually live in VR yet (though I did try working in it this week), but a new patent from Amazon might make that a reality sooner rather than later. The company’s also working on drones that could get deliveries to me even quicker than its other drones, and Facebook is working on making immersive videos work on any screen in my house. Who needs to go outside when I can bring the entire world to my couch? Big Tech’s patents this week seem very on board with me staying at home as long as I want to.

And remember: The big tech companies file all kinds of crazy patents for things, and though most never amount to anything, some end up defining the future.

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CDC says 40 percent of Americans surveyed tried using bleach to wash food to prevent coronavirus

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The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) say that over a third of Americans who took its survey reportedly misused household cleaners by using them on their fruits and vegetables in the attempt to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

Calls to poison control centers regarding disinfectants and household cleaners reportedly went up since the beginning of the pandemic.

“Thirty-nine percent of respondents reported engaging in non-recommended high-risk practices with the intent of preventing SARS-CoV-2 transmission, such as washing food products with bleach, applying household cleaning or disinfectant products to bare skin, and intentionally inhaling or ingesting these products,” the CDC report read.

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This lick-able screen can recreate almost any taste of flavor without eating food

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No matter how they may make you feel, licking your gadgets and electronics is never recommended. Unless you’re a researcher from Meiji University in Japan who’s invented what’s being described as a taste display that can artificially recreate any flavor by triggering the five different tastes on a user’s tongue.

Years ago it was thought that the tongue had different regions for tasting sweet, sour, salty, and bitter flavors, where higher concentrations of taste buds tuned to specific flavors were found. We now know that the distribution is more evenly spread out across the tongue, and that a fifth flavor, umami, plays a big part in our enjoyment of food. Our better understanding of how the tongue works is crucial to a new prototype device that its creator, Homei Miyashita, calls the Norimaki Synthesizer.

It was inspired by how easily our eyes can be tricked into seeing something that technically doesn’t exist. The screen you’re looking at uses microscopic pixels made up of red, green, and blue elements that combine in varying intensities to create full-color images. Miyashita wondered if a similar approach could be used to trick the tongue, which is why their Norimaki Synthesizer is also referred to as a taste display.

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Indiana man checked his bank account for his $1,700 stimulus check and found $8 million had been deposited by the feds

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A man from Indiana ended up receiving what appeared to be a lottery win rather than a stimulus check.

Charles Calvin, a volunteer firefighter was expecting a payment for $1,700.

Upon checking his bank account he found there was a payment for $8 million.

Each time he checked the ATM machine he was given the same balance.

By the time he called the bank on Monday, the money had been removed.

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You can light this candle with your phone, and it’s officially the future

 

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 Apparently, smartphones really do have everything we need, from cameras to calculators to flashlights to even… matchsticks?

You read that right. But instead of shooting flames out of a port, your phone can now create fire by activating a Bluetooth-enabled scented candle called Candle Touch, currently crowdfunding on Kickstarter. Said to be the world’s first smart-connected real-flame candle, the device has an electronic base that connects to a scented coconut-wax candle body. At a press of a button using the accompanying iOS/Android app, the base sends a current up a wire, which ignites the cotton wick like magic.

You’ll never have to risk getting burned ever again. Plus, you’ll have a neat party trick to show to all your friends.

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Somebody snuck a potato int CES 2020 to make a scathing point about useless smart gadgets

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Startup founder launches ″Potato″ at CES 2020

I almost walked right by it. But then I realized the object the young man was holding up, apparently thrilling the small crowd gathered around his tiny CES 2020 booth, was a potato.

The vegetable in question looked like an ordinary, chunky Idaho spud, although protruding out of one side was some kind of antenna, a black plastic appendage bent upward. Close to the potato’s surface, the exterior of the antenna became a thin, blade-like electrode that pierced the skin, clearly doing… something.

The man was regaling the crowd with his incredible smart product, which he said was finally unlocking the awesome decision-making power of the potato. The antenna, which he called the NeuraSpud, tapped into the potato’s “artificial intelligence.” Once you connected your smartphone over Bluetooth to the device and launched the accompanying app, you could ask the potato anything — with your voice, no less — and it would spout an answer on the screen, the digital-vegetable equivalent of a Magic Eight Ball.

If the smart potato sounds like a big, stupid stunt, that’s because it is. The man behind the idea, Nicholas Baldeck from France, told me he brought his admittedly ridiculous “invention” to CES to make a point about the torrent of smart gadgets at the show, many of which don’t really solve problems at all.

“This product has way more chance of success than 60% of the startups here,” Baldeck says. “I am skeptical of this idea of ‘connected everything.’ Now it looks like innovation is about putting a chip into any object. I’m not sure the word ‘smart’ makes more sense before the word toothbrush than the word potato.”

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The worst designed products of 2019

 

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 Don’t add any of these to your holiday wish list.

It’s never a good sign when the masses wonder whether your latest product is really an April Fool’s Joke. (Looking at you, Creme Egg Mayo.)

Heinz and Cadbury weren’t the only ones to launch a highly mockable product. For your reading pleasure, we’ve rounded up a shortlist of this year’s worst design fails. In no particular order, here are the products that most invite the question, why?

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‘Freeze… and marry me!’ – Russians who propose at gunpoint

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Anastasia is expecting her boyfriend Sergei to be waiting for her when her flight arrives at St Petersburg airport.

But as she lands he texts to say that, due to unforeseen work commitments, a friend will be picking her up instead.

So far, so normal.

Later, as Anastasia is approaching her apartment building in the friend’s car, a minibus with blacked-out windows screeches into their path. Armed men in masks jump out and take her driver friend away.

Anastasia is led to the back of the car she was travelling in. The men begin rifling through her things in the boot and discover a small packet full of white powder.

Surrounded by men clad in black special ops uniforms, a female plain-clothes detective turns to her: “You’re suspected of supplying banned substances.”

The colour in Anastasia’s face swiftly drains away.

“You must be mistaken. That’s not mine,” she says, smiling nervously.

“Then whose is it? Enough of the games!” a man barks.

The questions continue, until the man opens the packet to reveal a small pink box.

“And what’s this?” he asks.

“No idea!” she replies, her voice breaking.

Suddenly the man gets down on one knee, rips off his mask and shouts: “Marry me!”

It’s Sergei, and it turns out he’s the only one here who actually works in law enforcement. The others work for an “extreme proposal” service – part of an industry established in Russia in recent years.

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Watch two ‘Jetmen’ fly alongside an A380 superjumbo

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We’ve seen Swiss daredevil Yves Rossy (aka Jetman) fly his carbon fiber jet wing over Rio, and above Dubai with his protege Jetman Vince Reffet. The latest video from the fearless aviators sees Rossy and Reffet share the skies with something a little bigger — an Emirates A380 airliner. Once again, the flight takes place over the Palm Jumeirah and Dubai skylines. We can only imagine the duo gives the A380 pilot constant heart palpitations as they deftly maneuver around the plane (y’know, with its jet intakes and all that).

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French inventor successfully soars over English Channel on hoverboard

 

How a French inventor crossed the English Channel with one short refuel and in 22 minutes on a hoverboard.

The French inventor of the jet-powered hoverboard soared over the English Channel despite wind gusts Sunday, becoming the first to cross the channel in such a futuristic way after failing in his first attempt last month.

Franky Zapata reached speeds of 110 mph to complete the 22-mile journey on his flyboard that began in Sangatte – in France’s Pas de Calais region – and ended in St. Margaret’s Bay, beyond the white cliffs of Dover, in southeast England.

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