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Worldwide wrap

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In this edition of the Worldwide wrap, a British man has developed a solar-powered device that aims to curb the spread of mosquito-carried diseases and the Ringo app has been developed offering calls between countries - using submarine cables. Get the details on these stories and more below.

Device fights mosquitos

Pranav Agarwal has developed a solar-powered device that aerates the surface of stagnant water in order to prevent mosquitos from laying eggs there, and therefore from proliferating.

The Solar Scare Mosquito aims to curb the spread of mosquito-carried diseases such as malaria and dengue by disrupting the insects' breeding grounds. It works by sitting on the surface of the water and generating air bubbles at regular intervals to produce ripples in a radius of up to two metres.

The device features a bubble aerator, an air pump and a solar charger. It floats on the water and runs at regular intervals in order to disrupt the surface of the water and kill off mosquito larvae.
Via: Wired

NASA's global selfie

To commemorate Earth Day this year, NASA asked the world to take a selfie. More than 50 000 people did, and the result is a massive, 3.2 gigapixel mosaic of us, blended with weather satellite imagery taken at the same time.

According to NASA, people on every continent - 113 countries and regions in all - posted selfies. From Antarctica to Yemen, Greenland to Guatemala, Micronesia to the Maldives, Pakistan, Poland, Peru and so on...
Via: Slate

Bed bug tattoos

Colorado State University student, Matt Camper makes temporary tattoos made entirely from bed bug bites.

The tattoos are made with homemade jar contraptions that give the bugs access to a participant's arm in a specific pattern. The adventurous student chose a rabbit shape for his self-made tattoo, letting the bugs chomp onto his skin for a few hours before the bunny emerged from his flesh.
Via: Ecouterre

Ping pong robots

A team of computer scientists and roboticists want to create a swarm of 1 000 ping pong ball-sized robots that will move together in complex ways.

The team, led by assistant professor Nikolaus Correll at the University of Colorado, has already built a swarm of 20 robots, which they call "Droplets", and which move together in a way that he describes as "liquid that thinks". He now needs to raise $10 000 through the university's own crowdfunding platform in order to start to build the robot army.

"Our lab wants to understand and teach these mechanisms - swarm intelligence - using the Droplets," says the project's fundraising page. It adds that the robots can be used to help understand self-assembly, distributed learning, and cell-differentiation.
Via: Wired

Police vehicle replacement

The SE-3 Patroller is designed for police and private security patrols where the rider has to constantly mount and dismount.

It is expected to replace traditional patrol cars and two wheeled Segways in areas such as airport security, offering better stability and a more visible presence.

The SE-3 Patroller is powered by multiple rechargeable Lithium Ion batteries that can be charged at any standard electrical outlet or swapped out for replacement batteries to allow for continuous use.

However, the firm has refused to reveal how fast the gadget will go.
Via: Daily Mail

Mars landing vehicle

NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California has built a saucer-like spacecraft that will be used as a planetary lander in Mars missions launching as early as 2018.

The Low Density Supersonic Decelerator will enable land vehicles, crew and cargo to safely reach the surface of the Red Planet. The first Supersonic saucer-shaped vehicle test is scheduled for 2 June 2014 and will be performed at the Navy's Pacific Missile Range Facility.
Via: Inhabitat

The Ringo App

The Ringo app attempts to rival Skype by offering calls between countries for the same price as local calls - using submarine cables.

When a call is made via the app, Ringo connects it to a local phone network and assigns it a local number. It then switches the call to travel through submarine cables under the oceans. These cables are used by carriers, and transport high-speed data around the world.

When the call reaches the destination country, it is reconnected to the local network again. Although it assigns the call different local numbers each time, the call appears as if it's coming directly from the contact.
Via: Daily Mail

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