NASA Cassini Spacecraft Captures Saturn's Rings External Link

NASA’s Cassini spacecraft captures Saturn’s rings, planet Earth and its moon in this rare photograph. This pale blue dot is home.
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Whatevo 6mo
Dino Pet by Biopop

Dino Pet, the New Living, Interactive, Bioluminescent Pet

Dino Pet gives "Man's Best Friend" a whole new meaning with this new illuminated pet for tons of fun and less cleanup.Have you ever wanted an interactive pet that uses naturally occurring bioluminescence to glow brilliantly when you play with it at night? Then the Dino Pet by BioPop is just for you! It's cleaner than dogs, eats less than a baby, and smells better than anyone. Anyone.

The Dino Pet magically lights up like a meteor show and is triggered with constant movement. It's small enough to carry with one hand, is powered by sunlight, water, and nutrients, and requires no batteries or charging to operate.

So how does it work? This new illuminated pet was created by a group of scientists who constructed a way to sustain biological light using bioluminescent, single-celled plankton called dinoflagellates as a possible light source. Specifically, they are a marine species of unicellular non-toxic phytoplankton known as Pyrocystis fusiformis.

How is everything held together? The outer shell of the Dino Pet is made from an ABS plastic to ensure durability and safe keeping of the liquid inside.

To operate, the Dino Pet requires moderate lighting 8-14 hours per day, temperatures around 69 degrees Fahrenheit, or a range from 62 to 85 degrees Fahrenheit will do, and small weekly feedings of BioPop Dino Food that you can get through the company's website.

Your Dino Pet will lose light relatively quickly, but a gentle rocking back and forth or good, solid movement will light it back up again. The phytoplankton only respond during the night, so if you notice it's not working during the day, don't worry! Just give it plenty of sunlight at the right temperature and amount of food and you'll be able to enjoy the breathtaking light show provided by your Dino Pet.

Dino Pet would make a great gift for friends, family, and kids. It's cool to see technology used for new concepts, especially in fun and entertaining ways.

BioPop has a limited sale going on for the Dino Pet, but you can get it now on their website for a great price.
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Whatevo 12mo
3D printed faces from DNA code

Artist Creates Faces From DNA Left In Public

We leave DNA everywhere we go. From the strand of hair that drifted off our head taking a walk to the lick of saliva left on a glass at your favorite cafe. No matter where you go, your DNA was left somewhere at some point in time.

New York artist Heather Dewey-Hagborg takes advantage of these opportunities by swiping your DNA from the scene and creating a realistic 3D face. Her project, Stranger Visions, is dedicated to just that!

"The idea for the project came from this fascination with a single hair. This turned into a research project for me exploring exactly what I could discover about someone from an artifact they left behind."

Her process starts with finding an object that contains human DNA out in the public, ranging from anything including a piece of gum to a cigarette butt. She then takes a sample of the DNA to Genspace, a community biotechnology laboratory in Brooklyn where she extracts the DNA, purifies it, and uses it polymerase chain reactions.

Once the DNA is extracted, she uses a computer to create a 3D generated model of the face. The results generally do not create an exact likeness to the person the DNA belongs to since the data provided only describes general traits. Using the code, she takes certain pieces of data to create multiple versions of the face to enhance or decrease certain features based on what she finds in the DNA.

It takes about eight hours to print one of the faces. Once printed, the result looks like a block of powder that's then dug out then baked and hardened with a superglue-like substance.

Reactions to the project have been mostly positive while there has also been uncertainty regarding people's intrusion of privacy.

"If people find it to be a little creepy, that's OK. It's meant to make you aware of these issues and make you aware that this is possible."

A full technical write-up of the DNA process is available on her blog.
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Android Harry Potter

Android Users Have a Cool Feature You May Not Know About

Android users have a cool feature built into their device that allows them to activate their flashlight by voice command. What makes this feature really cool is the voice commands are spells from Harry Potter!

To activate your flashlight, launch a Google voice search on your phone. The way I did it was through the home screen widget. Tap the microphone icon and say "Lumos". Your flashlight will turn on! To turn it off, do the same thing except say "Nox" instead.

Pretty cool, huh?
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