Open source 3D Printer

The RepRap.  RepRap stands for Replicating Rapid-prototyper, meaning that a reprap machine can make the parts to build another reprap machine.  Which is kinda cool. 

If you want to build your own click here.

Stuff made by a reprap.

I heard about this when the inventor was interviewed on The Future and You podcast.

Ammonia powered engines

Motor Trend has an article on using ammonia for fuel.  It’s a good article, it points out pluses and minuses of using ammonia as a fuel source.

One thing it doesn’t mention is that a pair of U.S. Army Corps of Engineers NCOs had a pickup truck fueled by ammonia driving around the Washington, D.C. area back in the mid 1960s.

The First Android Phone

Popular Mechanics has a review of the T-Mobile G-1 phone.

Here is the short form review.   A nice 1.0 product.  A bit bigger than the iPhone, but it has a physical keyboard! Folks with stubby fingers have been complaining about the iPhone virtual keyboard since day one. The G-1 also has a vitural keyboard as well, so take your pick.

The big plus for the G-1 is the Android software.  Unlike Apple’s iPhone OS, it’s open and neither Google or T-Mobile will “gateway” applications the way Apples does through iTunes.

Since its written by Google, expect nice integration with Google’s online apps.  The Android GMail interface is mentioned as the best mobile GMail app so far.

It will be interesting to see Android based phones on different hardware and supported by different carriers.

ipowerweb fails the customer service test

Not really news, they have been a pain to deal with for years.

Now the final straw.  I’m moving my domains off their service, and ipower doesn’t send out a confirmation of transfer notice.  So, I have to wait days for transfer wait to time out.  

It’s this type of behavior that is why they are losing customers to companies that understand the concept of customer service.

Storing solar power

One of the big stumbling blocks to widespread solar (besides its current high cost), is the ability to store power for use at night or cloudy days.  Daniel Nocera, a professor of chemistry at MIT, has found an effective way to use sunlight to extract hydrogen from water.

This is lab scale only so far.  The big question is how well does this scale up?

U.S.S. Independence

The Navy is rolling out it’s new littoral combat ship, the U.S.S. Independence.  The 127 meter long trimaran hull will pull 60 knots (that the Navy will admit publicly to), with a crew of 40.  In addition to the advanced sensor package, it carries a configurable mix of guns, missiles and helicopters.  It can even carry Strykers and Humvees to put ashore after it softens things up with missiles and it’s Bofors 57mm gun.

Plus it just looks cool.

U.S.S. Independence

U.S.S. Independence

Now on Twitter

Urbin Technology is now on Twitter.