- This is another step towards home-gene-sequencing. A kit to replicate DNA from a small sample, at a ridiculously low price.
- Not quite printed electronics, but this is clothing-based, washable electronics: A hood with drawstrings that are really earbuds.
- IEEE Spectrum posted their predictions for 2012’s technology events. I’ve included some of them in here, but this link has all of them.
- Physorg.com has put up a an animation of the trials, tribulations, and eventual demise of Phobos-Grunt, Russia’s most recent ill-fated Mars probe.
- A proposal was made at a hacker convention to use dedicated private/cooperatively-owned satellites to evade SOPA and any other restrictive laws that are put into place. I’m not sure whether they’ve taken into account just how much a reliable satellite communications system costs, or how they may be targeted by an irate space-capable nation. (“Oh, hey, you guys depend on this satellite network for your acts of cybercrime? Y’know, we’re getting tired of being hacked, so we’re going to shoot them down. Sorry ’bout that.”)
- Here’s an overview of private spaceflight in 2012.
- As part of DARPA’s Phoenix program, which intends to scavenge parts from defunct satellites and use them to build new ones using robots, there’s a new movement to use the technology that’s gone into medical waldos to create robot space mechanics.
- Keyhole limpets. They’re a kind of mollusk that clings to rocks. They’re also, apparently, the only source of a potential wonder-protein in the fight against cancer. So now we’re going to be farming limpets for their blood, I guess…
- Ekso, a robotics company, is building an exoskeleton to help disabled people walk. This popped up in another story earlier this month, but I don’t remember seeing that they were actually going to be selling the things in 2012. Good for them.
- The problem with using a state as a test-bed for new legislation, which might make it into federal law if it works out at the state level, is that some legislation isn’t legal if a state does it. A judge just blocked California’s new low-carbon fuel law, saying it interferes with interstate commerce, which is the sole prerogative of the federal government. California intends to appeal, of course.
- Yet another article on electric vehicles (or EVs, as I call them). This one focuses on the importance of charging stations in making EVs less of a niche-market car.
- Rare earth crisis: Innovate, or be crushed by China – the title is kind of a “No, duh.”
- If you’re in an earthquake zone, don’t watch the ground for incoming quakes – watch the sky. Apparently the leakage of radon from the highly stressed rocks of a fault that’s about to let loose can cause significant changes in the atmosphere above a fault, which can be tracked by satellite.