• Could This Be the Smartest Street Sign in the World?

    Tired of what they deemed static and boring street signs, a team of Brooklyn inventors calling itself Breakfast has created what it hopes is the street sign of the future.

    After testing out Points in the video above, we can report that the future is here.

    Unlike normal signs that display static information, Points constantly changes the information on its directional arms. So if someone wants to know which cool events are happening in the area, Points will display a few of the best options on its arms and their distance. It will also move its arms to point out the event’s direction.

    Same goes for public restrooms, landmarks, restaurants and public transit stops. Points is connected to the Internet and can therefore use RSS feeds and social media sites such as Foursquare and Twitter to help people find what is around them.

    “A phone only does so much,” said Breakfast’s co-founder and creative director Andrew Zolty, when explaining why he and his team made Points. “You have to take it

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  • Flying Robotic Bees Are Here!

    It’s that time of year again: the insects are back. But this summer we’re seeing a new breed of flying bug -- robotic bees!

    Inspired by actual flying insects, a team at Harvard University’s School of Engineering and Applied Sciences have just successfully tested the RoboBee, an autonomous, robotic bug that can fly.

    Possessing the same size, mass and weight of a large house fly or bumble bee, the RoboBee will eventually have the ability to fly around in large swarms and perform beneficial tasks, like assisting humans in agricultural production and exploring hazardous environments.

    But that is still 20 to 30 years away, says Prof. Robert Wood, who leads the Harvard team of researchers and students responsible for creating and testing the RoboBee. For now, RoboBee is tethered to a power source and controlled by a computer inside a lab.

    One of their initial goals was get the RoboBee to hover, which proved exceedingly difficult because the fragile robots are unstable. Wood said the RoboBee

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  • Most hardworking teenagers play sports and complete their homework after school. Justin Beckerman, 18, does all that and builds machines. His latest creation? A fully-submersible, one-man submarine he made with $2,000 worth of materials from the hardware store.

    “I actually had a lot of experience building other submarines, [but] I wanted to challenge myself,” said Justin, a life-long inventor from Mendham, N.J.

    His goal was to make a sub that could “actually be used by other people and not just me,” he said.

    In April, Justin unveiled the “Nautilus,” a 12-foot submarine he says can descend to depths of 30 feet. He’s still working out the kinks but we can attest that his sub works. In the video above, which we shot last Friday at Lake Hopatcong, N.J., Justin dove 10 feet in the “Nautilus” and explored the lake’s murky waters for 10 minutes.

    “Successful test!” he exclaimed, after resurfacing, to his father, Ken Beckerman, and younger brother, Russell, 16, both of whom were monitoring

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