PipeGuard Robot: Finding Leaks and Fix

PipeGuard Robot: Finding Leaks and Fix

Fixing leaks becomes easier, simpler and swifter with PipeGuard

If you have a problem with your water supply then the best option is to call up a plumber and get it fixed. Just assume if a robot does the same for you then it would like living in a science fiction. One of the world’s most pressing needs is to bring access to the clean and safe water. In order to do so researchers has developed a PipeGuard robot, which can do many things to get rid of the leaks in shortest turnaround time.

It has been found in various studies the modern water distribution system on an average loses as much as 20 per cent of its supply due to leaks. Leaks are dangerous as it causes serious damage to the structures such as building as well as roads. Detecting leaking is another major challenge which happens to be quite expensive and time consuming affair this is where this robot comes in.

PipeGuard Leak detection system developed by MIT

Researchers at MIT has come up with new system which happens to be extremely fast and relatively inexpensive solution which can effectively detect and find even the tiniest of leaks with pinpoint precision. It can work on any kind of pipes regardless of its make and model. This new system is being commonly seen as a ‘PipeGuard’ but researchers has devoted as much as nine years to develop, test and perfect this system under the leadership of a mechanical engineering professor named Kamal Youcef-Toumi. At the upcoming IEEE/RSJ International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems (IROS) in the month of September this team is going to showcase its findings in detail.

How this new system works?

In this new PipeGuard system researcher makes use of a small yet impressive robot made up of rubbery substance which appears to be oversized badminton birdie. This this PipeGuard robotic device is inserted into the water system using the pathway of fire hydrant and it keeps moving as per the flow and continues logging its position throughout the route. It detects leak acts as a PipeGuard through detecting the variation whether small or large made in the pressure at any point of its journey. This data generated through its sensing the pull right at the edges of the rubber skirt and this rubber skirt tends to fill diameter of the pipe which ensures that no space is missed in any case.

Later on this device is collected at another hydrant insertion point and the data collected during its journey is uploaded to the computer for further study. This robotic PipeGuard device doesn’t only rely on the passive movement of the water to travel through the pipe but it also has system in the active version wherein the team can control its motion as per their need. This officially titles as ‘PipeGuard’ and it will be rolled out for commercial usage in such countries which losses huge amount of revenue due to leaks.

read more

Stunning Simulation Shows How The Earth Gets Its Magnetic Field 2,000 Miles Below The Surface

Stunning Simulation Shows How The Earth Gets Its Magnetic Field 2,000 Miles Below The Surface

High-Definition Simulation

A spectacular innovative high-definition simulation has been exposed that tends to look into the stormy core of the Earth, providing new insight on the mechanisms which seems to drive its magnetic field.  Though this field is said to stretch way beyond our planet, as a means of protective barrier against the harmful solar emissions, it originated from deep within at almost 2,000 miles below the surface.

The later supercomputer simulation portrays the flow of liquid metals in the outer core of the Earth wherein the temperature as well as the pressure tends to vary giving rise to electric currents.  With the combination of the rotation of the Earth, it is said to produce a large-scale `dynamo effect’.


According to the French National Centre for Scientific Research, in the case of dynamo effect, the Earth tends to spin along its axis and lines up with the convective motions in the outer core thus resulting in the massive magnetic field which is said to extend spaceward.  Nathanael Schaeffer, lead author had explained that while the procedure is said to be a complex task to be replicated in the lab, usual computer simulations seems to be frequently unreliable thereby compelling the scientists to settle for rough calculations.

 Simulation  Earth Core

Simulation: New Awareness on Outer Core

The researchers from the Institut des Sciences de la Terre and Institut de Physique du Globe de Paris had turned to the OCCIGEN supercomputer in Montpellier, in order to get a proper insight of what really tends to go in the outer core. Schaeffer had stated that their simulation had utilised up to 16,000 interlinked computer processor which had at the same time shared the mass of calculations.

The same took a little less than a year to calculate what otherwise would have taken 250 years by an individual computer. The hard work provided new awareness on the outer core comprising of methods which the scientist suspected were at play though were incapable of spotting in their earlier simulations.

This consists of the westward drift of the magnetic field.  Moreover they also discovered some evidence of the `giant tornadoes’ that had been connected to the strong magnetism towards the poles which had extended downward all through the core.

Build-up of Light Material – Tangent Cylinder

The authors had mentioned in the study, published that towards the interior, the magnetic field was said to be the strongest and associated with a vigorous twisted polar vortex, whose dynamics could occasionally lead to the formation of a reverse polar flux patch towards the surface of the shell.

Besides that, the tough magnetic field also endorsed a build-up of light material in the tangent cylinder which led to steady stratification there for simulation.  The researchers had explained that the new simulation provides a better realistic view of what tends to go on in the outer core of the Earth and hence the magnetic field. This could enable better magnetic field readings as well as forecasts, to support space navigation together with other resolutions.

The simulation, according to Shaeffer  show `zones where the magnetic field is said to be mainly strong as expected already, but more unexpectedly, the simulations show other zones where the field has been nearly insignificant.

read more

Scientists Borrow from Electronics to Build Electric Circuits in Living Cells

Scientists Borrow from Electronics to Build Electric Circuits in Living Cells

Electric Circuits in Living cells: A great mile stone in modern biotechnology

Bioengineers are able to specifically transform the genetic program of cells. In this way they are endowed with new characteristics or abilities that are not so innate but productive. The reprogramming of cells with electric circuits- currently the most dynamic field in synthetic biology – is based mainly on the technological breakthroughs in modern biotechnology.

Genetic methods have been used here for decades to transform microorganisms or cells into living factories for certain natural products, chemicals or pharmaceutical active ingredients. Biotechnologists are here like mechanical engineers, in order to conceive, build and then also continuously check in the cells to tailor-made cells with electric circuits – “production roads”.

While a new biosynthesis pathway is being integrated into a cell in metabolic engineering, some researchers in synthetic biology are pursuing the vision of transforming cells into an intelligent device, which can also be controlled externally through electric circuits. For this purpose, the bioengineers want to develop a catalog with standardized genetic components or switch modules and to assemble them into complex control circuits and electric circuits, which can be specifically controlled.

Their example is electrical engineering, where individual electronic components such as transistors, resistors or capacitors are combined into integrated electric circuits. Such circuits can be standardized and take over so many functions. Intelligent connection of the electric circuits results in complex circuits or even in the construction of living computers.

In fact, bioengineers have a variety of molecular modules at their disposal: genome researchers have already discovered numerous molecular gene switches. With such gene switches – these can be proteins, DNA or RNA molecules – the activity of genes can be precisely controlled.

They can therefore be switched on and off in a controlled manner. Also components of cell communication are always better understood. Optogenetic switches – ie, gene switches that are controlled by light – also offer new scope for controlling the cells in their external behavior.

If such switch modules are linked with other molecular components, then complex control circuits – so-called genetic circuits – can be assembled. The research team of University of Washington are among the pioneers of this approach borrowed from electrical engineering and computer technology. Some notable progress has already been made.

Milestones include a genetic toggle switch, or complex genetic electric circuits that enable cells to process or store binary information like a computer. A catalog with standardized genetic components for bioengineers – the BioBricks – has been developed by UW Researchers.

There are also first application-oriented examples of genetic electric circuits and reprogrammed cells in medicine. Researchers of UW, equip cells with a genetic program that reacts to certain stimuli from the outside and then begins with the production of a substance. This will make the designer cells live measuring station and drugstore in one (to application medicine).

read more

Flexible Pressure Sensors Similar to Suction Cups Mat Based on Octopus Suckers developed

Flexible Pressure Sensors Similar to Suction Cups Mat Based on Octopus Suckers developed

Prototype Krake: New adhesive material with artificial suction cups

Bionic material has best adhered in a moist and oily environment.
With by means of its fine hairs on the feet – called Spatulae – a gecko keeps itself on electrostatic forces even on very smooth surfaces. In a wet environment, however, this adhesion effect fails. As a model for a new, bionic adhesive material similar to suction cups, which also functions in moisture, Korean researchers have now refined the filigree structure of the suction cups of octopuses. As reported in the “Nature” journal, their suction napkins also adhere well to moist skin and are suitable for novel wound dressings.”Mikrometer small structures in our artificial adhesive material increased the suction effect,” Sangyul Baik and his colleagues from Sungkyunkwan University in Suwon explain the basic principle of adhesion. First, the researchers examined the suction cups of the Common Octopus (Octupus vulgaris) and recognized specific bulges in the small cup-shaped troughs. Thanks to this microstructured suction cups, octopuses can cling to slippery rocks under water, or even their beasts of prey.Suction cupsThese microstructured suction cups were copied by the material researchers with a flexible plastic film. They first pressed small troughs with diameters between 15 and 500 micrometers into a thin layer of silicone rubber. They filled the liquid precursor of a polyurethane-acrylate polymer and cured it under ultraviolet light in the micropipes – about 5,000 per square meter. In this case small, dome-shaped bulges were formed in the troughs. If the researchers pressed this bionic film onto a damp surface, it reliably sucked in with adhesive forces of over 40 kilopascals. If silicone oil was used instead of water, the adhesive forces even rose to 180 kilopascals.

Baik and colleagues were responsible for this effect. On the one hand, air was pressed out of the troughs by lightly pressing the suction napkin, and a small vacuum was built up. This adhesion was strengthened by capillary forces, which could be formed thanks to the filigree bulges. The greater adhesion in an oily environment, the researchers explained with the higher viscosity of the liquid compared to water. Even several thousand times detached, the suction napkins retained their adhesion effect.

Suction cups _2

The researchers found the best results with suction cups with a diameter of 50 micrometers. This film adhered reliably even on damp skin. As a first application, Baik proposes new types of patches to cover inflammatory and wetting wounds. But the thin silicon wafers for the production of computer chips could also be lifted out of the reaction baths with this suction napkin. “This approach could be used to move robots, biomedicine or toys,” says Jonathan Wilker from Purdue University in West Lafayette, assessing the Korean results in an accompanying commentary.

read more

Soon Chatbots will Talk to Us Like Real People!

Soon Chatbots will Talk to Us Like Real People!

ChatBots: Alexa, Cortana and Siri – The hype around language assistants explained

Amazon’s “smart loudspeaker” Echo with its language assistant Alexa has changed from the curiosity to the hype. Latest buffoonery: the echo show with the display. At the same time, many major names in the industry are already active in the same field: Apple with Siri, Samsung with Bixby, Microsoft with Cortana and Google with his nameless Chattbots. Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg programmed his “Jarvis” as a sub-project. But what is the factor? Do these ChatBots have the potential to fundamentally change online marketing and web search, as some experts claim?

Chatbots Alexa and Echo: Amazons “iPod moment”

Looking back, Amazon had the first echo probably his “iPod moment”: When Steve Jobs introduced the MP3 player 2001, the puzzle was initially great and of enthusiasm no trace. Why did Apple, who just barely escaped the bankruptcy, brought out such a device? In the beginning, the iPod was not a big hit – but it eventually became one and changed the music industry together with the iTunes Music Store and paved Apple’s way to the iPhone.

Likewise, the coverage of Amazons Echo was initially very reserved. Amazon had just been embarrassed with his smartphone. The Kindle had a lot of momentum and the new “Kindle Fire” tablets everywhere not synonymous as a striking hit. Why, all over the world, Amazon launched in 2014 that was practically a smart speaker with a microphone? And who, then, would like to have such a device at home, which had practically only one function?

We spool some years forward into the present and Amazon has developed the echo with the language assistant Alexa clever in many respects further developed. On the one hand, there are now other versions of the Echo: the compact “Dot”, the mobile “Tap” and the “Show” with a built-in touch screen. On the other hand, it has developed into the platform: developers can teach Alexa new skills and manufacturers can integrate the wizard anywhere, even in echo copies. Several devices to cars are now “Alexa ready”.

Why language assistants are such a hype

But where does this enthusiasm for ChatBots and “voice search” come from? The basic idea is that they give us a look into the future. In this or very similar form, we will most likely be interacting with computers in the future, as we know from Star Trek. And that this may become such a big revolution as touch screens, apps or the mobile web.

In fact, there is a clear tendency when looking at the development of user interfaces in computers: they are increasingly approaching how people interact with one another and with their environment. In the early years, this was still so abstract that it was only specialists after appropriate training understanding. Display and keyboard made the next step a little easier, as far as the familiar commands.

The graphical user interface of such ChatBots, in turn, was still a habit but tried to make many processes pictorial – in addition, you can try here in doubt. The natural language would now be an understandable and efficient form of operation in many situations. With touch screens, the ChatBots reacted to familiar gestures like wiping and tapping.

The ideal is that the ChatBots understands us just as well as a human being or even better. At the same time, the electronic helper knows everything the Internet knows. And he knows us so well that he can tap into missing information himself. Maybe he can even provide us with answers before we’ve ever asked.

If this were to be the case, this could lead to a significant change. Many situations where we had previously tried a search engine like Google or an app would now be covered by the ChatBots.

For this reason, some experts expect that online marketing and, last but not least, search engine optimization must react to this trend. In our survey of the SEO trends of the year “Voice Search” was mentioned several times.

Examples of language assistants

Practically all the big names in the industry now have their own assistants. The theme is just too interesting and the potential to be alluring. Here is a look at the current state of affairs:

Chatboats Alexa

Amazon Alexa Chatbots

Alexa is the language assistant, the Amazon Echo is the in-house hardware. In 2014 Amazon showed both for the first time to the public. The echo is a loudspeaker connected to the Internet, including several microphones. By voice command he can, for example, play music, announce the weather forecast or order it from Amazon. The latest model and one of the best ChatBots called EchoShow has a touchscreen and a webcam installed. In addition, video calls are now possible, called “Alexa Calling”.

The system is extensible via “Skills”: third-party providers can teach Alexa more skills. In this way, the echo can also become the central hub for the Smart Home. The number of these skills has increased significantly between June and November 2016: from 1,000 to 5,000.

Alexa, however, is not caught in the echo: Via Amazon’s “Alexa Voice Service” other manufacturers can integrate the wizard – free of charge. This has recently led to the launch of a top Android smartphone from Huawei in the US with Alexa pre-installed on the market. This is probably little Google likes, but they make their competitor “Google Assistant” only gradually. Lenovo, with the “Smart Assistant“, even released a cluttered echo clone that costs $ 50 less than the model.

Amazon, it is quite obvious to secure a place in this market as quickly as possible. This is the only way for them to determine how their e-commerce offers are integrated.

Chatbots siri

Apple Siri Chatbots

Already in 2011, Apple presented its language assistant Siri. At that time he was still an exclusive feature of the iPhone 4S. Siri was not developed by Apple itself but bought up. Planned versions of Siri for Android and BlackBerry have been thrown in the process. In the meantime, Siri is represented on all platforms of the Californian company – from the watch to the desktop Mac.

Latest japery: the smart and most admired ChatBots named as “HomePod”. With it, the company would like to build on the success it iPod. It is marketed primarily as a compact, well-sounding loudspeaker that has a digital music expert installed – Siri eben. But Siri can also do everything the assistant can do, so give answers to various questions or even control the Smart Home, as long as it is based on Apple’s HomeKit. However, the HomePad is not yet available on the market. He is currently scheduled to enter the market in December 2017 in the US, UK, and Australia.

Similar to Alexa, third parties can now link their apps to Siri. However, this is currently only very limited in some specific categories of apps.

Chatboats Jarvis

Facebook Jarvis Chatbots

Jarvis is not (yet) a finished product of Facebook. Rather, it is a finger exercise by Facebook’s founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg. What you can do in your spare time when you have created the largest social network in the world. In his own words, he was concerned about learning about the state of things in artificial intelligence. Via Jarvis, he can control his Smart Home and the assistant is also to learn about the habits and preferences of the user over time. Instead of installing new “skills” manually, as with Alexa, Jarvis is supposed to find out how to do so far unknown tasks. This combination of language assistant and self-learning. Basically the users do not want to install functions, but at any time and immediately get meaningful and helpful answers to every conceivable question.

Officially Jarvis is currently only a private project by Mark Zuckerberg. In his own opinion, however, he thinks about making the source code freely available (alias “Open Source”). At the moment, however, this is all too directly connected to his home and the existing devices there. Alternatively, Jarvis could also be the basis for a new product.


Google Assistant ChatbotsChatbots Google Assistant

Google Search has been a topic for Google for a long time and since 2012 it had found its home in the digital assistant Google Now. With the Google Assistant, it is now to be brought to the next level and at the same level as the competition. Amazon’s Echo and Google Home – there is a lot of correspondence between these two ChatBots.

At first, only a few users were able to try out the new wizard. The “Pixel” smartphones from Google itself. In February 2017, Google then announced to bring it to all Android smartphones version 6.0 (“Marshmallow”). If you can do without the language part, a version of the wizard is currently available on Google’s chat app Allo.

What Amazon calls “Skills” is called “Actions on Google”. This allows developers to develop third-party capabilities for the wizard.

Microsoft Cortana Chatbots

Microsoft has shown its Cortana assistant for the first time in 2014. He was named after an artificial intelligence in the “Halo” series. Cortana has been used for the first time in Windows 10 and is now also available for Android and iOS devices as well as on the Xbox One. The functionality is comparable to what has already been described in the competition. Cortana is closely linked to Microsoft’s browser edge and its search engine Bing.

In addition to Chatbots, Cortana is part of what Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella has summed up as “conversation as a platform”. Microsoft wanted to “take the power of human language” and apply it in many places. He explained this at the build conference 2016 in San Francisco in his keynote speech. He sees language as a new form of user interface. “Bots are the new apps, digital wizards are meta apps,” he said.

One year later, Microsoft also showed an interface for developers (“Cortana Skills Kit”). In the future, Cortana will also be able to be used by other manufacturers as well as Alexa for their devices.

Harman-Kardon also shows his echo competitor “Invoke”. The smart loudspeaker is expected for this year. And Microsoft also works with “HomeHub” to make every Windows device an echo competitor.

Chatbots cortana


Between a successful tech demo and a successful product for consumers, there is still a long distance that should not be underestimated. Often screenings on a stage are completely scripted and not as “live” as they seem. In addition, the makers there know exactly what they should say so that the desired result comes out. In reality, however, the language assistant has to deal with dialects, ambient sounds, and linguistic peculiarities, to cope with bad Internet connections or to answer questions that the software has generally only understood half or which are so ambiguous that no simple answer can be given.

Nevertheless, it seems clear that progress in the artificial intelligence has been so rapid and impressive in recent months that the abilities of these ChatBotsAlexa, Siri, Cortana, and others can soon be improved very noticeably. And then it is actually interesting for online marketing and here not least for search engine optimization.

read more
1 9 10 11 12 13 18
Page 11 of 18