How Nature Inspires Technology

There are thousands of examples of how nature has guided technological development throughout human history.  No-one did more to pioneer this approach than the great Leonardo himself who used detailed studies of nature, anatomy and biology to invent incredible machines such as his “Mechanical Dragonfly”, “Great Kite”, “Flying Machine” or “Glider”. Although some 500 years have

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Driverless cars – coming soon to a road near you!

So, the government has announced we will see driverless cars on British roads in the New Year. Four cities and towns – Bristol, Milton Keynes, Coventry and Greenwich in south London – are to be testing grounds for so called ‘autonomous vehicles’ from January 1 to enable innovators to gain a greater understanding of this

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Judgement day: the rise of the machines

When I think back to when I started in engineering my first PC had 512k of RAM and no hard drive at all but two 360k floppy drives. Incredibly when the machine was built there was obviously no requirement envisaged for a hard drive. Shortly after I bought a 20Mb “hard card” and so started

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New robots, old debates continued…

Say hello to social robots… We recently wrote about the growing number of robots that have been developed to carry out household chores – from smartphone-controlled vacuum cleaners to automatons that sift through cat litter. But while these machines are designed to help us with our mundane domestic tasks, there is another emerging area of

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Exciting new concept: The windowless passenger aeroplane

Here’s a video that caught my eye recently… a great example of how a different way of looking at things can come up with surprising and exciting design concepts – the windowless passenger aeroplane.  “Blue sky thinking” perhaps? (Sorry.) The idea is that by removing the windows from a commercial aircraft you can incorporate thinner

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