How to electrify your brain to be smarter with a 9-volt battery

brain current q23423Boost your brain power with some cranial current.

Transcranial direct current stimulation can make your brain work better. DARPA proved it can make you better at video games, the U.S. Air Force has shown it cuts drone remote-pilot training in half, and Harvard researchers have used it to treat depression. So what is this magical device that powerfully manipulates your brain function and where can you get one?

It’s not much more than a battery and a bunch of wires. In fact, you could actually make it yourself…

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Balloon mapping kits by Mathew Lippincott

IL Kickstarter Creativity Spotlight

Today’s Kickstarter Creativity Spotlight focuses on balloon mapping. What the heck is balloon mapping you may ask?

Balloon mapping is sending a camera up on a balloon, snapping photos, and stitching them into a map. Over the past year and a half these fine folks have built a global mapper community and this is your chance to participate in all the excitement…

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World’s first desktop virtual reality design kit – Leonar3Do

IL CES Direct Feed

Some of the innovations at CES were basic and if you saw one of them you were going to see 20. Others jumped out and smacked you in the noggin because there were obvious landmark steps in a new direction. The Leonar3Do virtual reality design kit really captured our imagination and kept us thinking all day and night of the possibilities it was capable of…

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For sale, one space tracking station worthy of an evil genius

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Can you see what I see? Can you hear what I hear?

If you have plans to take over the world, you’re going to need a secret lair from which you can run your evil plots. But why waste time and money hollowing out a volcano when there’s already the perfect place for sale in the real estate listings?

The Jamesburg Earth Station was built by NASA in 1968 for receiving transmissions from the Apollo moon landings, then it was used by AT&T for satellite telecommunications. It even played a key role relaying pictures of the Tiananmen Square protests in 1989. Now it can be yours for just under $3 million…

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Etsy makes it easy for users to post items to Pinterest with new ‘Pin It’ button

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Online pinboard Pinterest is all the rage these days, and as Etsy is showing today with its latest product announcement, e-commerce sites are starting to realize the power of pinning. The e-commerce marketplace is making it easier for Pinterest users to pin and organize Etsy items, via a new Pin It button on Etsy listing pages, alongside the Tweet and Like buttons.

Etsy says that its members are big fans of Pinterest (and so is Etsy), so the integration makes sense. Etsy is also using Pinterest’s price display feature. So when you pin listings with the Pin It button, the required pin description field is prefilled with the item title and price. Users can also add a note about why they like the item, which will be added to their Pinterest posting…

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Solar heater made from can lids will boil a jar of water

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Recycling can lids can turn into a heated situation.

It takes two hours on a sunny day, but this solar heater built by engineering students at Humboldt State University in California works. It’s made from waste materials, specifically can lids. These are held together by vines from Himalaya blackberry plants, which are an invasive species in their area…

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Happy 69 Year Old Lady Has Not Used Money For 15 Years

Heidemarie Schwermer, a 69-year-old woman from Germany, gave up using money 15 years ago and says she’s been much happier ever since.

Heidemarie’s incredible story began 22 years ago, when she, a middle-aged secondary school teacher emerging from a difficult marriage, took her two children and moved to the city of Dortmund, in Germany’s Ruhr area. One of the first things she noticed was the large number of homeless people, and this shocked her so much that she decided to actually do something about it. She had always believed the homeless didn’t need actual money to be accepted back into society, only a chance to empower themselves by making themselves useful, so she opened a Tauschring (swap shop), called “Gib und Nimm” (Give and Take)…

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Thai Flood Hacks

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Water Bottle Boat.

Necessity is truly the mother of invention, so when the going gets tough because of the2011 Thailand Floods, the Thais get floatin’ on a DIY boat made from water bottles.

Thai Flood Hacks is a Tumblr blog that collects the ingenuity of the Thai people in dealing with the 3-month-old flood. A few more pics follow…

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Civilisedmoney: A crowd-funded, ethical alternative to mainstream banks?

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Crowdfunding is a great way to pry control away from big money.

Whether it’s local investing in everybody eats restaurants, the microfinancing of entrepreneurs through Kiva, or citizen-funded clean energy through eco-bonds, we’ve featured plenty of ways to get passed the big banks and put your money to work.

Peer2Peer Finance Goes Mainstream
In the UK there are already a number of peer2peer lending sites, like ZOPA, that are offering rates of return far better than your traditional bank. A new venture called civilisedmoney is aiming to take this model even further, offering a fully transparent, crowd-funded alternative to every service offered by mainstream banks…

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Global village construction set: Towards a DIY civilization

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Building a brighter tomorrow for all earths inhabitants.

Open Source Ecology is a network of farmers, engineers, and supporters building the Global Village Construction Set — a modular, DIY, low-cost, open source, high-performance platform that allows for the easy fabrication of the 50 different industrial machines that it takes to build a small, sustainable civilization with modern comforts…

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Printing new homes for Hermit Crabs

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Custom printed crab homes.

Hermit crab homelessness is reaching critical levels, leaving many of these fine clawed fellows without a shell of their own.

Now, thanks to 3d printers and our tireless search for new things to print out, there’s a solution: custom printed hermit crab shells! The printed shells will last longer, look cooler and are sure to stir up feelings of jealousy among other hermit crabs. If only we could print houses for homeless humans!

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The rise of Customer-Driven innovation

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Crowdsourcing for innovation.

Numerous studies demonstrate that 70-80% of all new products fail. Lack of relevance, lack of differentiation, inappropriate pricing and muddled messaging all factor into a brand’s struggle when launching a new product.

However, the ultimate judgment of new products falls to consumers, who, ironically, are often absent from the development process. That development stage stands the greatest chance of generating transformative new ideas early on, before the brand has made a significant investment…

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