3D printing is quickly becoming a mature manufacturing technology. It’s useful for prototypes and offers significant benefits for small and medium-sized production runs. Using additive manufacturing, which refers to the production of three-dimensional parts formed layer by layer by using a metal powder that is melted with a metal source, 3D printers create high-quality products. These revolutionary machines have been used in different areas. With the level of constant development, the device is going to make a greater impact in the future.
Specialists argue that in the next 20 years 3D printers would be able to print large-scale houses. The device would print the building layer by layer using jets of concrete and would be able to create a two-story building just within a day. Some people however criticize this idea. They argue that such houses will not be reliable or solid and would easily collapse. In my opinion, this is a revolutionary innovation and as long as they use all the required materials and equipment to create the houses, I think the structure would be solid enough and of course after a thorough inspection. This 3D printer would make things simpler for constructors and multiple buildings would be constructed within a day.
Another aspect in which 3D printing devices and equipment would serve a greater purpose in the future is in the area of medicine. There are predictions that in years to come, 3D printers would be able to print bones or even organs, which may be the only way to save a patient’s life. There are arguments if this can be effective and if it would not cause harm or endangerment to the patient rather than help. I’m not fully convinced about this idea, because it may be odd to have a printed organ in your system or body.
Therefore, there are multiple areas in which 3D printing could serve a greater purpose in the future. There are also other aspects in which 3D printing would serve as help that were not mentioned in this blog, such as in engineering, aerospace, rail or robotics. What do you think? Is the idea of 3D printing revolutionary?
Marvel Studios is one of the largest film and television production companies with very popular superhero movies. Marvel is a Subsidiary of Walt Studios and it is responsible for the production of Marvel Cinematic Universe movies and series that are based on the characters from Marvel Comics. The company makes up artificial intelligence gadgets used by the fictional characters, such as their suits, weapons, systems, and even the characters themselves. There were some cases in which a technology used in a Marvel movie became a real thing, which makes people wonder if such advanced artificial intelligence made up by creative minds is possible. With Marvel illustrating where modern technology is today and where it can potentially go, a lot of people wonder if Marvel is predicting the future of AI and technology.
As I said earlier, there have been cases in which technology used in Marvel movies became a real thing! An example of this is the technology used in the ‘Iron Man’ movie. In 2016, the CEO of Facebook, Mark Zuckerberg built an AI assistant inspired by JARVIS (Just A Rather Very Intelligent System) from the movie ‘Iron Man’. JARVIS is an advanced AI system, that assisted Tony Stark and controlled, managed, and even created advanced technology. Zuckerberg’s version of Jarvis isn’t nearly as advanced but can control his home, including lights, temperature, appliances, music, and security. It also learns tastes and patterns, new words, and concepts. Another technology inspired by Avenger’s billionaire, genius, and philanthropist character, Tony Stark is the exoskeleton, which was introduced by the US Special Operations Command.
The question now is if the technologies that don’t exist yet created in Marvel movies can exist in the future. A lot of people argue that they are nearly impossible to create and have no chance of existing. However, I think most of the AI gadgets used in the MCU can become real, just not anytime soon, maybe in the next century. It would be cool to have an Iron Man suit, the holograms used by the superheroes to communicate or have meetings, or even the device used by Peter Parker (Spider-Man) to create his suit, which was a highly advanced technology. The only thing I think is impossible for technology to create is superhero powers (obviously), which of course is only a part of the fiction in the Marvel movies. Therefore can these fictional AI be replicated? Is Marvel actually predicting the future of technology?
Nowadays all manufactures in the automotive industry are switching from internal combustions engines (ICE) to electric, with the intend to ban sales of new petrol and diesel cars in Europe by 2035. Moreover, the media keeps telling us that this change will benefit the environment and help reduce the amount of CO2 that we produce. But have you ever thought about the truthfulness of these statements?
One of the companies that are making this change is Volvo, which has released data about the amount of CO2 that is produced during the manufacturing and use of an electric car (XC40 recharge). In the report Volvo has compared it to the ICE equivalent (XC40), but keep in mind that the data doesn’t consider the productions and utilization of the batteries.
Looking at the first part of every automobile, the production process. Volvo states that the production of the electric vehicle increases carbon emissions by 70% in comparison to its ICE equivalent. This is mainly due to the increase of materials that are needs to produce sed vehicle. Looking at the numerical data that is provided from the company, we can see that the production of the XC40 Recharge generates 26.4 tones of CO2, whilst the XC40 ICE produces only 15.7 tones (Elisabeth Evrard, Carbon Footprint Report, 2020). Putting this into perspective, the entire automotive industry produces around 3 billion tons of CO2 (in 2020) (Tiseo, 2021) in the production processes of vehicles. If the entire industry started only producing electric cars this number would change to around 5.1 billion tons of CO2. Moreover, the world would be at great risk of having a crisis due to the limited supply of Li-ion batteries. This would affect almost every aspect of our life, since this type of batteries are used in almost every device that we buy and use everyday.
The most important part of a car’s life cycle is the “use phase”, in which the two types of vehicles differ substantially. Volvo in its analysis tells us that electric car is supposed to travel 200 thousand kilometers before being dismantled. During this time the cars is estimated to produce 24 tons of CO2 on the global electricity mix, which being compared to the 43 tons of CO2 that the internal combustion equivalent is estimated make, sounds like an amazing improvement. Nevertheless, this brings the breakeven point of the car’s pollution at 110 thousand kilometers (Elisabeth Evrard, Carbon footprint report, 2020) of driving but keep in mind that the average person travels 21.7 thousand kilometers per year (Transportation, 2022). Which means on average it will take a person around 9 years to reach the end goal of 200 thousand kilometers. Most if not all of, electric car manufactures guarantee that the battery will last 8 years and decrease it compacity to only 70% (Corby, 2022), which also means that the range that the vehicle can travel on one charge will decrease. Throughout the estimated cars use cycle the user might need to change the cars battery or replace the entire vehicle. In the instance of replacing the entire vehicle (generating 26.4 tons of CO2) the breakeven point in carbon pollution will be at around 250 thousand kilometers, which exceeds the scale of the analysis.
(Elisabeth Evrard, Carbon footprint report, 2020)
Coming to the end phase of the vehicles life cycle, it is the least polluting process with both types of vehicles producing the same amount of CO2. The problem with this is that the data doesn’t consider the fact that the utilization of batteries is a very harmful process for the environment. Nevertheless, in the most optimistic circumstances the batteries will be refabricated and reused in some other way.
Concluding, electric vehicles aren’t as ecological, with regards to the information that we are given in the media. Data shows us that this change will have a very different outcome on our environment than what people believe it will have. There are very many downsides to the change and putting the world on the verge of a crisis isn’t a solution. Maybe there is more behind this change than we think?
Feel free to comment about this topic, I am curious of your opinions.
Elisabeth Evrard, J. D.-H. (2020). Carbon footprint report. Retrieved from Volvocars: https://www.volvocars.com/images/v/-/media/Market-Assets/INTL/Applications/DotCom/PDF/C40/Volvo-C40-Recharge-LCA-report.pdf
Elisabeth Evrard, J. D.-H. (2020). Carbon Footprint Report. Retrieved from Volvo Cars: https://www.volvocars.com/images/v/-/media/Market-Assets/INTL/Applications/DotCom/PDF/C40/Volvo-C40-Recharge-LCA-report.pdf
Tiseo, I. (2021, December 14). Carbon dioxide emissions from passenger cars worldwide from 2000 to 2020. Retrieved from statista: https://www.statista.com/statistics/1107970/carbon-dioxide-emissions-passenger-transport/
Transportation, U. D. (2022, May 31). U.S. Deparment of Transportation. Retrieved from U.S. Deparment of Transportation: https://www.fhwa.dot.gov/ohim/onh00/bar8.htm
Edelstein, S. (2015, January 30). Where Will BMW Electric-Car Batteries Go When They Retire?Retrieved from Green Car Reports: https://www.greencarreports.com/news/1096552_where-will-bmw-electric-car-batteries-go-when-they-retire
Corby, S. (2022, March 22). What is the lifespan of an electric car battery?Retrieved from Carguide: https://www.carsguide.com.au/ev/advice/what-is-the-lifespan-of-an-electric-car-battery-86149
XPeng Inc has developed the XPeng X2 flying car, which has been successfully tested in Dubai, United Arab Emirates.
XPeng is a Chinese electric vehicle manufacturer that was established in 2014 by Xia Heng (Henry Xia) and He Tao. The goal of XPeng is to create smart cars using the latest technologies with the possibility of using their products by ordinary users.
On Monday, October 10, the novelty took off over the Marina in Dubai, a prototype of its electronic taxi, which will soon be able to transport people around cities over the main road routes. The tests took place with an empty cockpit, but the company says it conducted a manned flight test in July 2021 last year.
The developers claim that the car can reach speeds of 130 km/h (81 mph) and a flight time of 35 minutes. It is controlled by an eight-rotor design and can carry two passengers
at the same time. Also, the car was specially created for Urban Air Mobility (UAM). Chinese engineers were able to provide fast and affordable point-to-point travel inside the city without specially equipped takeoff and landing sites.
The XPeng X2 weighs 360 kg (794 lb) and has a maximum takeoff weight of 560 kg (1,235 lb). The Chinese company achieved such a small weight by making the body of the aircraft from carbon fiber
The approximate cost of the novelty is from $126,000.00 – $236,000.00 USD. In the future, tests of the car in Europe are planned, and serial production will occur in 2024.
Theoretically, flying cars can be a discovery for mankind and transport people high above traffic jams, but so far the problem with flight duration has not been resolved (35 minutes without recharging), as well as security problems and general conditions for flying many such cars at the same time
We have been using our daily electronic devices, depending on a device which was first invented in 1881. Of course, I am talking about a “battery”.
Batteries are a collection of one or more cells whose chemical reactions create a flow of electrons in a circuit. All batteries are made up of three basic components: an anode (the ‘-‘ side), a cathode (the ‘+’ side), and some kind of electrolyte (a substance that chemically reacts with the anode and cathode).
When the anode and cathode of a battery is connected to a circuit, a chemical reaction takes place between the anode and the electrolyte. This reaction causes electrons to flow through the circuit and back into the cathode where another chemical reaction takes place. When the material in the cathode or anode is consumed or no longer able to be used in the reaction, the battery is unable to produce electricity. At that point, your battery is “dead.”
As quoted above, and as we most probably have encountered it before, our batteries are not usable after a certain amount of time. The technological progress we’ve had throughout 100 years is astonishing and technological advancements have to occur as we head into a green and carbon-free future. That is why these advancements have to happen also in the battery business, the solution is Nano Diamond Nuclear Batteries.
Not only is this type of battery much more efficient and longer-lasting, but it does also get rid of toxic waste from nuclear power plants and use it as a green energy solution, as radiation will power them for up to 28 000 years, though we will see for ourselves in the future *wink wink*. Let’s compare these two:
This invention will make our mobile devices almost, or completely charge free and the usability possibilities rise only as fast as our imagination can allow. The electric cars business will be turned around in a fashion that only a fool would discredit as petrol cars soon will go extinct. I’m eager to see what the future will bring, but thanks to this invention, it won’t be as depressing and polluted as many may think. Let’s hope for the best and support innovators.
It is safe to say that Covid-19 pandemic changed the way we live forever, but probably the biggest changes affected the restaurants and food consumption. A lot of people prefer taking out to eating in, especially if it is a fast food chain restaurant, not a regular. It leaves them with two options – order food digitally with the help of official or third-party applications like Uber Eats and then wait for the delivery straight to their place. But initial spike in popularity of such method is decreasing, because more and more customers are unsatisfied with the cost of delivery fees. Actually, both customers AND restaurants are unsatisfied – restaurants are charged too, and sometimes their profit is cut by more than two times because of the fees. However, we also have a second option – Drive Thrus. A record breaking 90% of sales in McDonalds USA is made at the drive thru windows. And fast food restaurants are doing a lot to improve the efficiency of this method and to shorten the wait time. Many QSR(quick serving restaurants) are reducing the number of menu items present on the display or invest in permanent structure renovations of their buildings to add more driving lanes and reduce the sitting space in halls. And out of all the companies, Taco Bell are the ones who are embodying the most fundamental changes.
Firstly, they are opening the so-called Taco Bell Go Mobile locations, which will get rid of dining room alltogether, resulting in a building that is 47% smaller than a traditional Taco Bell restaurant.
But much more interesting thing is their first of its kind restaurant Taco Bell hopes to build in Brooklyn Park, Minnesota. The franchisee claims that Taco Bell Defy is a concept “so different that it has never been constructed anywhere before.” There is no dining room. There are designated curbside pickup spots for mobile orders. And it has four drive-thru lanes(one lane for over-sized vehicles and three lanes passing directly beneath where the kitchen is, with orders getting lowered to the customers on a special elevator system. What is even more impressive is that Taco Bell is willing to cooperate with other fast food chains, to work as the cooking facility for them to prepare food on the same kitchen for different companies as a ‘ghost kitchen’. If it is successful, then they can enlarge their production capacities simply by prolonging the building itself, thus creating more space for more driving lanes for more customers. So the whole process is like a snow ball, or an avalanche.
It would also lower the costs of delivery, because instead of going to different places for different restaurants, the delivery driver can pick up all the delivery order from one window. Plus if the place becomes large enough it can even launch it’s own app-delivery service and reject third-party delivery apps alltogether.
Other commercial businesses could use this concept as well. The highest cost of delivery for companies like Amazon is the ‘last mile’, when packages are shipped directly to the home address of client. So having such a contactless distribution center capable of serving personal vehicles would come in handy for grocery stores, furniture stores and, in general, multi-purpose companies like Amazon or IKEA.
All in all, even though Taco Bell Defy is yet to open(approximately it will happen this summer), if everything goes the right way, we can expect that once again certain shopping habits and aspects that we were and are used to will transform drastically.
Richard Matthew Stallman, an American free software movement activist and programmer, has said that social media sites don’t have users – they have useds. The primary reasons for sites like Facebook to exist is to generate revenue for the company and they have two main ways of doing so. First way is by using their webpage as a terminal for advertisements. Second way is gathering as much data about their consumers or users as possible and then selling to any interested company.
In the first case, to maximize revenue, users are manipulated to stay online, giving as much eyeball time to the ads as possible. Algorithms that allow specific targeting in order to cause strong emotions to keep people engaged, dopamine-inducing things like count of your subscribers or likes on your posts. All of it has the sole purpose – consuming more of your time. Thus, converting your time into profit(don’t forget that 98% of Facebook’s revenue comes from advertisers)
In the second case, things get a bit trickier. Facebook doesn’t sell your data directly. Instead, what they do sell is access to a platform that makes it as easy as possible for advertisers to reach you based on your interests. And creation of Metaverse(which has already been discussed in numerous posts previously on technoblog, so I believe there is no need to explain what is it exactly) allows to gather even more data. And more data makes good business sense. But there are (in my opinion, well-founded) fears that the new data we create in the Metaverse could lead to a privacy nightmare. For example, Facebook made a big deal about the fact that it’s not going to be doing facial recognition on photos that you upload to Facebook anymore. But it hasn’t said it’s not going to do facial recognitions in Metaverse. For sure, generating more data is not necessarily harmful, but it could give companies like Facebook an unprecedented amount of control.
Knowing this all, the scenario shown in this video seems quite believable.
In my previous article, UNIT.CITY AND THE FUTURE OF TECHNOPARKS, I briefly mentioned FabLab Fabricator – a lab of rapid prototyping and R&D. At that time I didn’t know that around 2,000 more such laboratories already exist in the world. This topic seemed to be interesting and worthy of further research. And after closer examination, I am ready to say that fab labs can change the way we perceive production of goods completely.
So what is “fab lab”?
The idea of fab labs was conceived by inventor and scientist Neil Gershenfeld, who is a professor at MIT and the director of MIT’s Center of Bits and Atoms. His idea was a simple one: to provide the environment, skills, advanced materials and technology to make things cheaply and quickly anywhere in the world, and to make this available on a local basis to entrepreneurs, students, artists, small businesses and in fact, anyone who wants to create something new or bespoke. The goal is to personalise fabrication.
The first ever FabLab could provide the number of most-used tools and processest, including 3-D printing, scanning, and design; laser cutting, machining, molding, and casting; and electronics production, assembly, and programming.
Nowadays, the range is much wider. Flexible manufacturing equipment within a fab lab may include:
Mainly, a rapid prototyper: typically a 3D printer of plastic or plaster parts
3-axis CNC machines: 3 or more axes, computer-controlled subtractive milling or turning machines
Printed circuit board milling or etching: two-dimensional, high precision milling to create circuit traces in pre-clad copper boards
Microprocessor and digital electronics design, assembly, and test stations
Cutters, for sheet material: laser cutter, plasma cutter, water jet cutter, knife cutter.
In his interview with Discover Magazine on the question what personal fabrication might be useful for, Gershenfeld said, “There is a surprising need for emergent technologies in many of the least developed places on the planet. While our needs might be fairly well met, there are billions of people on the planet whose needs are not. Their problems don’t need incremental tweaks in current technology, but a revolution”.
But even for the conventional businesses there are a lot of benefits to use fab labs. From the managerial and economical point of view it includes: reducing product cost, optimizing production process, getting your employees acquainted with modern technologies. Fab lab is a creative environment for startups, entrepreneurs, innovators, enthusiasts, craftsmen, artists, designers, engineers, scientists. While creativity can’t be measured in money, it is certainly a big plus for the company. And these are just the main points, the list goes on and on.
They haven’t been on the market for a long time, but they already have a number of customers, mainly innovative and intriguing start-ups(such as nuka, PetCube and RAWR).
The core distinction between FabLab Fabricator and other companies in this sphere is that FabLab Fabricator focuses not only on production. They have three explicit goals:
FabLab Fabricator conduct different educational courses, both fee-paying and free-of-charge. Level of complexity also varies, so it does not matter if people who take these courses are familiar with the such processes as 3D printing, laser cutting or wood carving or not. Anyone can find something for themselves.
Even supposing that you don’t have a project ready for production immediately, the R&D team scientists possess skills needed to translate it to reality in a month or two.
3. Small-scale 3D printing
This advantage is not unique to FabLab Fabricator. It is common among many the fabrication laboratories around the globe. Yet, it is still a strong argument backing the choice of this particular type of production facility.
What’s with the vision for the future of fabrication?
More or less, the whole concept is already established. The future steps for Neil Gershenfeld and his team is to beat the last major issue – heavy reliance on a global supply chain for their inputs – fabrication labs can’t yet make things like integrated circuits or precision bearings. The solution they have is extremely simple but very original. Rapid prototyping of rapid prototyping so that a fab lab can make a fab lab. After that, citing the Neil once again: “We’re replacing additive and subtractive processes with assembly and disassembly to create the full range of technologies from a small set of building blocks, as happens in biological systems. And, finally, we’re eliminating the distinction between machines and materials by coding the construction of self-reproducing systems.”
Of my own, I would also add that it is important to expand the network of laboratories. Ideally having one in each major city. All in all, it is not hard to understand that all business are part of interlinked system, forming the local and global economics like a clockwork. Access to instruments, knowledge and teaching of practical and technical skills provided by fab labs will boost local makers and start-ups courage to think and create their own projects, which in return will promote economical growth.
Unit.City is the first innovation park(also known as technoparks, science parks or technopoles) in Ukraine. As description from the official website says:
UNIT.City is a prototype for the city of the future. An ecosystem that promotes innovative entrepreneurship and research. As well as the creation of companies successful in the global market.
Advanced technologies of urban infrastructure are tested and implemented here, in particular in such areas as transport and micromobility, unmanned logistics, energy efficiency, automated security, telecommunications, landscaping, and the like. By collaborating with promising startups, we create an innovative environment where the best ideas about comfort and functionality are brought to life.
The key difference from the most of technoparks around the world(which, because of strong bonds with governments and universites, are rarely interested in actual demands of market) is that Unit.City is completely private initiative created by Vasyl Khmelnytsky – a Ukrainian businessman and founder of holding company UFuture. Unit.City is specifically targeting two types of customers: Firstly, ambitious start-ups made by young entrepreneurs with the prospects of their development and possible future profits, thus improving the economical situation in the country and preventing “brain drain”. Secondly, the people who work in such compaines themselves. The idea is to create a space, where they can learn and work, create and invent, interact witch each other, spend spare time and live life to the fullest without the need to leave the technopark.
Sensorama specializes in creating virtual and augmented reality applications. They are working on a educational solutions for industrial firms to help their employers be more effective and involved in a working process. The company is able to provide online trainings with new equipment to make sure that workers know how to deal with it before letting them to use real analogues and much more.
FabLab Fabricator is a lab of rapid prototyping and R&D. They develop and produce prototypes, mainly for small start-ups, with technologies such as 3D printing, laser cutting, textile lab and CNC milling. The terms are short, the price is relatively cheap, and the scale of production can be really small, which is important if your company is not financially big enough to manufacture prototypes in large quantities.
How Unit.City will affect the concept of technoparks?
The experience of Unit.City shows us that technoparks serve as great opportunity both as business project to make money and as strategically vital element of developing country’s prosperity. It also boosts the commitment of youth, encouraging them to either becoming entrepreneurs or creators – scientists, engineers, programmers etc. Sooner or later the case of first ukrainian technopark will be noticed by other nations, and similar facilities will be established. The perfect outcome would be international cooperation of such institutions. If this happens, I can not even imagine the resulting growth in technology and overall prosperity of humanity, but I am sure it would be very impressive.
“It’s not that we use technology, we live technology.” – Godfrey Reggio
What can go wrong?
Despite all it’s sweet promises, there are some possible drawbacks for Unit.City.
Foremost, it is the country – Ukraine. The political and economical situation in Ukraine is quite unstable. This can scare off potential foreign investors, and even kill the desire of local businessmen to finance such projects, because instead of risking of all your funds they can relocate their assets to more stable countries in western world.
But even the idea of commercial technopark might not be as promising as in theory. The success of the whole concept relies heavily on the large number of participating companies and the good relationships between them. And this is not something you can be entirely sure of.
So, all in all, there is more positive than negative in Unit.City, but will it be triumph or failure – only future will show.
Reading Time: 2minutesIn order to overcome the increasing problems of urbanization, a smart city is a structure consisting primarily of ICTs to create, implement and promote sustainable development activities.
In fact, the intelligent network of linked objects and computers that relay data using wireless technologies and the cloud is an integral aspect of this ICT scheme.
Using laptops and handheld computers as well as wired vehicles and homes, individuals interact with smart city environments in various ways. Pairing sensors and information with the physical infrastructure and facilities of a city will lower costs and promote resilience.
Why do we need smart cities?
Urbanization is a non-ending phenomenon. Today, 54% of people worldwide live in cities, a proportion that’s expected to reach 66% by 2050. Combined with the overall population growth, urbanization will add another 2.5 billion people to cities over the next three decades.
Environmental, social, and economic sustainability is a must to keep pace with this rapid expansion that is taxing our cities’ resources.
Copenhagen is a smart city!
A public-private partnership, ProjectZero, has been developed to encourage and support the transition of Sonderborg into a ZEROcarbon society by 2029, focusing on infrastructure, transport, urban energy supply and data/ICT. Carbon-free development and progressive urbanization have been accomplished from the early planning level to the implementation process, relying on the active participation of residents.A core goal of ProjectZero is the provision of education at all levels. People are studying how green approaches, from Kindergarten to PhD, will help them to co-create a new world. The city’s happiness is reflected explicitly in the constructive interaction between individuals. In rural areas, private homes are being upgraded with electricity, linked to green district heating, and the use of heat pumps is increasing dramatically.Trained local banks, craftsmen and real estate agents support the citizens’ green journey by offering competitive services and solutions. The journey often starts with shifting to inexpensive LED-bulbs and biking to work. Professional municipal banks, craftsmen and real estate brokers promote the green path of individuals by offering competitive instruments and tactics. The journey also begins by switching and cycling to work to cheap LED-bulbs.