• Turn MP3s Into Vinyl Records

    Vinyl is back! And in a big way.

    Vinyl Recorder, a small company based in Germany, has created a machine that carves MP3s into vinyl, thereby marrying audio's future with its past.

    After setting up the machine and learning its ropes, you can transfer any MP3 in your possession onto your own personal mix-tape-on-vinyl.

    But why go through the trouble if you love digital? Wesley Wolfe, Vinyl Recorder’s representative in the United States, explained that, with vinyl’s resurgence in recent years, music listeners -- and not just audiophiles -- are rediscovering vinyl’s quintessential "warm" sound.

    Digital files, he said, have laddered sound waves. But when you transfer MP3s onto vinyl using Vinyl Recorder’s machine, the sound waves are smoothed out. The result, Wolfe said, is a so-called audio “sweet spot” only achieved on vinyl.

    To see just how the process works, watch the video embedded above this article.

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  • Real-Life Mario Karting!

    Admit it: you’ve wondered what real-life Mario Kart would be like.

    OK, I’ll stop projecting. Personally, I take my Mario Kart very seriously and have several lifelong rivalries with friends to prove it. I just wish they all had been with me at SXSW in Austin, TX, this year so that we could have settled the score once and for all with the real-life version.

    That’s right, real-life Mario Kart.

    And no, this wasn’t just go-karting with Nintendo branding plastered all over the karts. I’m talking Mario Kart essentials in real-life: speed bursts, turtle shells (of sorts) and four-player split screens.

    In order to cross-promote Nintendo’s new Mario Kart 8 with a new Pennzoil motor oil, the two companies joined forces to create the most accurate version of the beloved racing game on a real-life track (that wouldn’t result in an injury lawsuit).

    Here’s how it worked: each kart was outfitted with an RFID tag reader that registered RFID tags on the track. These tags were item icons: speed bursts,

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  • Can Your Manicure Do This?

    If there’s one problem with extension nails (so I’ve heard), it’s not being able to type easily with them on a smartphone. Touchscreens register body energy through fingers, but fake nails don’t conduct energy.

    Dr. Sri Vellanki, a Montana-based dermatologist, kept bumping up against this problem and decided to solve it. “Some people have bigger hands and long nails and those things get in the way and aren’t very accurate,” she said.

    Nano Nails, Dr. Vellanki’s invention, are fingernail styluses that look like regular nail extensions. They’re made with a conductive polymer that conducts your body energy so that your phone’s touch screen registers your touch. As a bonus, Nano Nails can be manicured just like any other nail extension.

    “It has a flat tip, which activates your touch screen,” said Dr. Vellanki. “When you use it you can really see what you want to touch.”

    Each Nano Nail lasts at least one week, said Dr. Vellanki. They will come in two sizes, small and large, and will cost

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