How to Walk Like a Ninja: An Illustrated Guide (

Just in time for Halloween. Now your walk can match your talk!

Walk Like a Ninja 3

With Halloween just around the corner, there’s no better time to learn how to walk silently through the night like a ninja. It’s an incredibly useful skill, allowing you not only to stealthily assassinate your archenemy, but also steal cookies from coworkers, check to see if toddlers are still sleeping without waking them, or sneak across your creaky wood floors to scare the bejeezus out of your roommate.

Inspired by Secrets of the Ninja by Ashida Kim. I stumbled upon this book back when I was in middle school. Definitely a fun read.

Terrafugia Launches Flying Car

By “2015”, they expect to have both of their flying car models available. Of course, given you’d probably need a pilot’s license before you could start up the plane-car, it’ll be a while before regular folk can get their hands on this vehicle. However, their prototype works and that’s all that matters at this point. (The TF-X model is the picture below. The Transition is featured in the flight video.)

The Transition® First Public Demonstrations: Driving and Flying at EAA AirVenture Oshkosh 2013

Terrafugia made a dream come true at this year’s EAA AirVenture Oshkosh!  The Transition® performed its first public demonstrations for the aviation community during the show. Flown and driven by Phil Meteer, our Chief Test Pilot and Flight Test Coordinator, the Transition® showed the crowd what it’s capable of on Monday afternoon and Wednesday evening.  The 20 minute demonstrations included flight maneuvers over show center, converting from airplane to car, and driving along the flight line.  Whether you missed it and want to see the flight for yourself for the first time, or you were there and want to relive the moment (we have been!), we hope you’ll enjoy the video!

– See more at:

Hungry? Try A 3-D Printed Extra Cheese Pizza For Dinner (

I can’t imagine this tastes that great, but it’s probably better than some of the bargain basement brands in the grocery store. This would also open the door to essentially most baked and pastry-type items since they’ve managed the basic “dough with toppings” delivery system.


Researchers have been talking about 3D printing food for a long time, but when NASA decided it was time to find new ways to provide food to astronauts on long trips (like to Mars), 3D printed food became more relevant than ever. As earth’s population continues to grow fast, some people believe 3D printed food is the future of food. I have to admit, it sounds tastier than eating bugs for protein. This 3D printed cheese pizza actually looks pretty good.

It’s clear that in the future, we will no longer have huge grocery stores stocked with everything we could ever want to buy. We’ll have to get more creative about food as it relates to our survival. With over 7 billion people on the planet, and with more people born every day, there really is no other option. 3D printed food sounds good to me, especially when it’s a cheese pizza. According to news station KXAN:

“Powdered ingredients that can keep for years are mixed into individual vessels. A heated plate then receives a square of dough, a layer of sauce, and some cheese topping. Twelve minutes later – voila – an appetizing little pizza.”

The top layer of the printer is what melts the cheese. If NASA is able to send 3D printers into space, they’ll save a ton of room in the spaceship since they won’t have to pack all those boxes of food for the trip. Also, the astronauts would have a much more appealing diet than just eating space food for every meal.

This reminds me of the movie Matrix, and how they talked about the goop they had to eat each day. I’m sure they would have liked to have a 3D printer to make a cheese pizza instead of that juicy oatmeal stuff they ate. If you want to see a 3D printer create even more food, click over here to 3D Printing Industry and watch a printer make some pretty creative looking pancakes. Someday we might all have a food printer in our kitchen. It’s not as far-fetched as you might think.

3D Printed Cheese Pizza Looks Delish

Plated Lets You Be The Gourmet Chef (

Folks who know me know I’m serious about food (I used to write a restaurant review blog) and I love spending time in the kitchen. However, I have tons of friends (and even family) who don’t feel confident in the kitchen but still wished they could make a gourmet meal from time to time. piggybacks onto social media and has come up with a great answer: you pick the recipe you want, they locally source your entire meal and ship it to you, and you follow the easy instructions to make a fantastic meal for your friends and family.


I’m in love with this idea. Too bad it’s not yet national! For you lucky folks in the Northeast (DC to Boston) and the Midwest (all of IL, IN, and MI, along with major cities like St. Louis and Cleveland), try this out. Enjoy something amazing. And take all the credit. Just be sure to toss the box in the trash before company arrives.

Busy schedules affect our food choices. It isn’t just laziness that leads us to take-out and delivery — long days at work, school or raising kids can squash even the best of dinner intentions. Who has the time or energy to prepare a full meal, and a healthy one to boot?

Plated, an online service and TechStars alum that delivers fresh, local ingredients to your doorstep, wants to return the complete cooking experience to your kitchen. It saves you the time it usually takes to find healthy recipes and ingredients by providing all the necessities for a gourmet meal. All you need is about 30 minutes to make it.

Co-founders Nick Taranto and Josh Hix came up with the idea for Plated after they graduated from Harvard Business School, when they noticed their busy schedules directly influenced their diets. Plated’s “dinner kit” is their solution. After you select a chef-designed recipe (the team releases a new featured menu every week), you receive locally sourced ingredients in a biodegradable box, which is designed to keep the contents fresh in your fridge for five days.

“We believe that most people want better, more nutritious, less greasy food, and they’re willing to put in 20-30 minutes of work in order to get it — if given the choice,” Taranto says.

Placing an order requires a minimum of four plates at $15 per plate, so pricing is definitely geared more toward multiple people than individuals. However, the potential for leftovers may still save you money in the long run. Plated also offers a membership for cheaper plates and automatic delivery options.

We spoke with Taranto about his reasons for creating Plated, how it’s “built on the back of social media” and what the team is planning next.

Q&A With Plated Founder Nick Taranto

Plated Cofounders
Plated co-founders Josh Hix (left) and Nick Taranto. Image: Plated 

How did you come up with the concept for Plated?

I met my co-founder, Josh, at Harvard Business School in 2008. After we both moved back to New York City, we found ourselves making bad food decisions, spending way too much money to eat crap. We knew there had to be a better way, and we seized the opportunity to build the “Warby Parker of food.” Our mission is to reconnect people with their food.

Sustainability and sustainable farming are popular topics right now. Can you talk about Plated’s commitment to that, and how you partner with local vendors?

At Plated, we are committed to providing delicious and convenient meals with a whole lot of honesty. Honesty means knowing exactly what is going into our meals by seeing, feeling, holding, chopping and cooking raw ingredients. We avoid processed foods, especially ones that rhyme with “butylated hydroxyanisole,” because we prefer our mashed potatoes without a heaping tablespoon of carcinogens.

We source our meats from local purveyors that are committed to raising livestock responsibly, without the use of hormones. We prefer our animals au naturel, and only work with businesses that share our vision of what constitutes fresh and sustainable. We also work with responsible companies to make sure that most of our fish is wild-caught. We love knowing exactly which boat threw out a line to catch our salmon fillets.

Our philosophy on food is that it should be really fresh and really real. Again, we want to reconnect people with their food — from farm to dinner table.

Where is Plated available?

We have warehouses in New York, Chicago and San Francisco [currently delivering across the Northeast and the Midwest], and we will be nationwide within the next few months.

Plated HQ Meeting
The Plated team gathers for a meeting at the Manhattan headquarters. Image: PlatedHow do you select the featured recipes?

Elana Karp is our Cordon Bleu-trained in-house culinary director. She works with chefs across the spectrum, ranging from Michelin-starred restaurateurs, to cookbook authors, to up-and-coming sous chefs toiling away in New York City’s best restaurants.

How can Plated become a social platform for its users?

We built Plated on the back of social media. [The process of] cooking and eating is one of, if not the the most, shareable things that people do. There are 12 #foodporn photos uploaded to Instagram and Pinterest every second. We are working behind the scenes on building out our platform to turn this content into commerce.

Plated Calendar

What kind of customer base have you and your team seen?We have thousands of customers spread across the country. Our customers are aspirational foodies — folks who want fantastic food experiences, but don’t have the time to spend two hours at the farmers’ market three days per week. Pre-kids, dual-income households are where we find our most fanatical customers.

How does Plated compete with sites such as Seamless and What sets Plated apart in the online delivery space?

We believe that most people want better, more nutritious, less greasy food, and they’re willing to put in 20-30 minutes of work in order to get it — if given the choice. Within the next year, you’ll see a number of initiatives directly … competing with take-out as a category.

What’s your favorite featured recipe?

Hands down, the sesame-encrusted tuna with avocado and seaweed — nom nom!

Images: Plated

911 App Uses Smartphones to Virtually Place Dispatchers at Scene of Emergencies (

Being employed in the telecom industry since 2000, it’s great to see practical, helpful, possibly life-saving applications available for use on smartphones. As NextGen E911 is being deployed nationally, albeit slowly in many cases, expect to see texting, picture messaging, and more diagnostic uses for smartphones in emergencies.

Would you feel calm and collected enough during an emergency to start up an app and try to use it to save someone’s life?

MDDI Online Article Here


911 App Uses Smartphones to Virtually Place Dispatchers at the Scene of Emergencies

The Android app enables 911 dispatchers to gather data such as blood pressure, heart rate, and breathing rate via a caller’s smartphone.

A team of researchers has developed a mobile medical application that harnesses smartphones to virtually place 911 dispatchers at the scene of emergency situations.

The app, developed by a team led by University of North Texas engineering professor Ram Dantu with support from the National Science Foundation’s Directorate for Computer and Information Science and Engineering, enables 911 dispatchers to remotely control the smartphone of a 911 caller at the scene, enabling the dispatcher to see video of the scene and collect vital information about the victim.

During emergency calls, 911 dispatchers ask callers basic questions to help them assess the situation, but callers don’t always know the answers.

“When a 911 operator asks the question, ‘Is the patient breathing?’ callers often have no idea,” Dantu said during a virtual press conference today.

A smartphone placed on a victim’s torso allows the emergency operator to view the victim’s breaths per minute. This allows the operator to gauge whether the caller should start CPR. Photo credit: Logan Widick, University of North Texas

The app his team created is intended to solve that problem. Using the software, a caller at the scene can place a smartphone on the victim’s chest to monitor their breathing rate and place the victim’s finger on the smartphone’s camera to check their heart rate. The app can also cufflessly monitor the victim’s blood pressure. All information captured is transmitted wirelessly to 911 dispatchers.

At the press conference, the research team also demonstrated the app’s CPR assistance feature. A 911 caller at the scene can strap a smartphone to their hands using a piece of clothing or a plastic bag, for example, to get instruction on how to perform CPR. The app can also provide real-time feedback—urging the caller to increase the speed or depth of compressions, for example.

The app also features text-to-speech technology, which can help in situations where a 911 caller doesn’t speak English or is hearing or speech impaired.

Henning Schultzrinne, of the Federal Communication Commission, said the app is one example of technology that can interface with the new Next Generation 911 systems being rolled out across the country. These IP-based systems replace the voice-only 911 systems used in the past and can incorporate new sources of information, such as text messages, images, video, and data.

The app has been tested by 40–50 individuals in a lab setting, and the researchers hope to launch a pilot in a hospital or nursing home environment soon, Dantu said. He said the app will require FDA approval, and the team’s next steps include talking with vendors of emergency dispatch protocols to learn how to integrate the app with their systems. It was initially developed for the Android platform, but the researchers also plan to launch a version that can run on Apple’s iOS. They hope to have a version of the app available for download in 2–3 months.

Contact Lens Computer: Like Google Glass, Without Glasses (

Bottom Line: Soft contact lenses could display information to the wearer and provide continuous medical monitoring.



A computer embedded into a contact lens could make for the ultimate heads-up display.

soft contact lenses on finger
(We’ve made contact: Researchers embedded a light-emitting diode into this contact lens.)

For those who find Google Glass indiscreet, electronic contact lenses that outfit the user’s cornea with a display may one day provide an alternative. Built by researchers at several institutions, including two research arms of Samsung, the lenses use new nanomaterials to solve some of the problems that have made contact-lens displays less than practical.

A group led by Jang-Ung Park, a chemical engineer at the Ulsan National Institute of Science and Technology, mounted a light-emitting diode on an off-the-shelf soft contact lens, using a material the researchers developed: a transparent, highly conductive, and stretchy mix of graphene and silver nanowires. The researchers tested these lenses in rabbits—whose eyes are similar in size to humans’—and found no ill effects after five hours. The animals didn’t rub their eyes or grow bloodshot, and the electronics kept working. This work is described online in the journal Nano Letters.

A handful of companies and researchers have developed electronic contact lenses over the past five years. Sensimed, of Switzerland, makes a lens for 24-hour monitoring of eye pressure in glaucoma patients, and other researchers, including University of Washington professor and Google Glass project founderBabak Parviz, have built contact-lens displays. But these devices have used rigid or nontransparent materials.

Park wants to make contact lenses that have all the functions of a wearable computer but remain transparent and soft. “Our goal is to make a wearable contact-lens display that can do all the things Google Glass can do,” he says. To make it work, they needed a transparent, highly conductive material that was also flexible. The transparent conductor of choice in conventional rigid electronics, indium tin oxide, is brittle, and it must be deposited at high temperatures that would melt a contact lens. Organic conductors, graphene, and nanowires are flexible and transparent, but they’re not conductive enough.

Park, working with Sung-Woo Nam of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, found that sandwiching silver nanowires between sheets of graphene yielded a composite with much lower electrical resistance than either material alone. The industry standard for a transparent conductor is a resistance of 50 ohms per square or less, says Nam; their material has a resistance of about 33 ohms per square. The material also transmits 94 percent of visible light, and it stretches. The researchers make these conductive sheets by depositing liquid solutions of the nanomaterials on a spinning surface, such as a contact lens, at low temperatures.

Working with researchers at Samsung, they coated a contact lens with the stretchy conductor, then placed a light-emitting diode on it. Although it would be an exaggeration to call this a display, since there is just one pixel, it’s possible this kind of material will be a necessary component in future contact-lens displays, says Herbert De Smet, who works on electronic contact lenses at Ghent University in Belgium but was not involved with the work.

Nam believes medical applications of electronic contact lenses may be even more promising than eyeball-mounted displays. He is currently using the graphene-nanowire conductors to make biosensors that could monitor health conditions by sampling the chemistry of the eye’s tear film. And De Smet’s group is developing lenses that can actively filter light to compensate for vision problems.

Original Article

Father’s Day: 5 Superbly Nerdy Gift Ideas

Father’s Day.

June 16th.


With only 10 days remaining, are you panicking to find a gift the father in your life might actually appreciate? I’m here to help! Here are five excellent gadgets and go-tos for the father in your life.

In no particular order….

1. Grill Alert Talking Remote Meat Thermometer

Main Product Image

Spend less time at the grill and more time enjoying the party.

  • Select meat type, choose preferred cooking temperature and close the grill—then walk away!
  • Stainless steel probe tracks meat temperature
  • Monitor features belt clip so you can step away from the grill while keeping an eye on your meat
  • Transmitter ranges 300’ and alerts you when your entrée is ready
  • Backlit digital screen displays meat type, preferred cooking temperature, current temperature and target temperature
  • Remote uses 2 AA batteries and transmitter uses 2 AAA batteries (not included)
  • For indoor and outdoor use

2. Age Your Own Whiskey Kit by Woodinville Whiskey Co.

The Age Your Own™ Whiskey Kit includes two 750 ml bottles of 110 proof White Dog un-aged whiskey, a 2 liter aging barrel, pouring funnel, two tasting glasses, and step-by-step instructions. Because of the small barrel size, the aging process is significantly accelerated with nicely aged whiskey available in 3-6 months (you be the judge!). Aging barrel can be refilled and reused 5+ times.

A lightweight, portable speaker that brings the party with you. The Beats Pill is wireless and Bluetooth enabled, so that you can play music from your device or take calls. Small enough to fit in your hand, the Beats Pill surprises with its powerful signature sound.

Just because you (or your dad) is nerdy doesn’t mean you can’t have great-looking, healthy skin. Kiehl’s has been a premiere men’s skin care company for over 160 years! Heck, they started as an apothecary in New York’s East Village neighborhood. (Nerdy, I know.) For only $42, you get all this:

A travel-perfect mix of essentials to keep him clean, energized and moisturized.

  • Ultimate Man Body Scrub Soap 3.2 oz
  • Facial Fuel Energizing Moisture Treatment 2.5 oz.
  • Ultimate Brushless Shave Cream – White Eagle 2.5 oz.
  • Facial Fuel Energizing Face Wash 2.5 oz.
  • Ultimate Strength Hand Salve 2.5 oz.

5. Jawbone by UP

Jawbone UP : Colors

A bracelet? For $129.99? What’s the catch?

The Jawbone by UP is the most tech-savvy bracelet on the planet. It tracks your health and fitness thoroughly via an awesome mobile app for iPhones and Android. Reviews have generally been positive and here are some of the best reasons to treat your Dad.

* Wide array of metric tracking
* Comfortable
* Fantastic apps
* Available in three sizes and eight colors
* Tracks activity, sleep habits, has a power nap switch, and vibration alarm reminding you not to schlep around the house

Sphero: the Smartphone Powered Robot Ball ( tends to offer hip, trendy, interesting clothing, gadgets, and more. This robot ball is definitely a nerdy gadget, but is it too nerdy? Would any of you actually USE this…especially when it costs $100 (on sale)? Here’s the info offered over at

(To see the 20+ apps and for more information about the development company, go to


Your dream of a robo-butler hasn’t panned out yet, but the folks at Orbotix have built something even better. Sphero is a wireless motorized ball brought to life by your smartphone. This simple concept yields powerful and playful possibilities, showcased in wild, colorful style by over 20 free gaming and utility apps.

Adam Wilson

Adam WilsonWhen we built Sphero, we knew it was going to be a legit gaming robot—but we had no idea that it would develop consciousness and become our robotic overlord. Well…we kinda’ knew.– Adam Wilson, Co-founder and Chief Software Architect, Orbotix

Top 10 Nerdiest Cites in the US –

Well, I guess it HAD to be done. I’m just sorry to see Seattle’s only third on the list!

Follow the link below for the full run-down, including all of the reasons WHY these cities made the list, or just look below that for the actual top 10.

10. Denver, CO
9. San Jose, CA
8. Miami, FL
7. Las Vegas, NV
6. Boston, MA
5. Minneapolis, MN
4. Sacramento, CA
3. Seattle, WA
2. Portland, OR
1. Atlanta, GA

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