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Image source: Ikea

Virtual influencers are essentially virtual people created with CG (Computer Graphics) softwares that can generate content for different social media platforms. These characters have been gaining a lot of success lately thanks to their viral nature, which works very well when it comes to collaborating with brands.

You may remember Lil Miquela (the most famous virtual influencer by far) from the Calvin Klein campaign when she was hugging and kissing Bella Hadid, one of the most important celebrities in the world. So yeah, this is quite a big business.

The last big news regarding this crazy digital world is the collaboration between ImmaGram and IKEA Japan. …

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Image source: Microsoft

Starting from this statement Microsoft has been working throughout the latest years with pioneers in marine energy to achieve the ambitious goal of Project Natick to develop self-sufficient underwater datacenters that can deliver lightning-quick cloud services to coastal cities (and save energy).

Starting from this statement Microsoft has been working throughout the latest years with pioneers in marine energy to achieve the ambitious goal of Project Natick to develop self-sufficient underwater datacenters that can deliver lightning-quick cloud services to coastal cities (and save energy).

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US startup Space Perspective, in collaboration with London-based design studio PriestmanGoode, is working on a new type of spaceship that will transport passengers and scientific cargoes to the edge of space.

Flown by a pilot, the Spaceship Neptune will consist of a pressurized capsule attached to a high-performance space balloon. It will be able to safely reach the edge of the Earth’s atmosphere in about two hours. There, the passengers (called Explorers by the Space Perspective marketing team) will be able to enjoy a breathtaking view for two hours, “share their experience on social media” and wait for the descent, which will last another two hours and end in the ocean, where a ship will retrieve the capsule.

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Source: Current Biology

The first genetically-altered squid has scientists thrilled about a potential new way to study the intriguing cephalopods, a group including octopus, cuttlefish, and squid.

Creatures that have famously complex brains, the largest of all invertebrates, and behavior including the ability to camouflage themselves (despite being colorblind) count, recognize patterns, problem solve, use tools, mimic other species and communicate using a variety of signals.

These distinctive features attract the attention of many biologists and open many avenues for study and have applications in a wide range of fields, from evolution and development to medicine, robotics, materials science, and artificial intelligence.

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Source: GilletteVenus

Among the latest and most interesting responses to racism, there has been a rather unexpected crossover collaboration between Gillette-owned brand Venus and Nintendo’s golden child Animal Crossing: New Horizons.

Following the death of George Floyd by the hand of a white police officer and the subsequent nationwide protests, rioting, and civil unrest, there has been also a never seen before response from brands, media companies, and agencies as they have taken a stand against racism and social injustice, through different actions.

Among the latest and most interesting responses to racism, there has been a rather unexpected crossover collaboration between Gillette-owned brand Venus and Nintendo’s golden child Animal Crossing: New Horizons.

Summer Skinclusive Line by Venus, the partnership consists of hundreds of new skin-inclusive avatars within the game, under the coordination of the digital designer Nicole Cuddihy, as part of its “My Skin, My Way” campaign aimed at celebrating every woman and every type of skin. …

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Source: corte.si

A programmer named Aldo Cortesi has created a crazy algorithm: one that draws silhouettes for nonexistent animals. Some of these look plausible, while others look like uncanny hybrids from Alex Garland’s 2018 sci-fi movie “Annihilation.”

A few weeks ago we illustrated the possibilities offered by modern neural networks, able to bring back to life ancient times (Denis Shiryaev and his videos).
These tools are capable of reconstructing and optimizing images, or, in this case, to build new ones from scratch, thanks to the proper machine learning.

Cortesi wrote that human likenesses-generating algorithms were his main inspiration. While he was mulling the implications of that tech, he found out about PhyloPic, a database that collects silhouettes of animals. …

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Source: Production.club

Specifically designed to satisfy the needs of nightlife, live events and entertainment industries, Micrashell is a virus-shielded, easy to control, fun to wear, disinfectable, fast to deploy personal protective equipment (PPE) that allows socializing without distancing.

During these times of crisis, all sectors in which any close interaction or physical contact was expected have entered a crisis never seen before, and despite the fact that we are talking about reopening, many sectors are unlikely to be as before.

Several design studios have participated in the research and design of innovative solutions to the problems brought about by the pandemic, but one, in particular, caught our attention.

Production.club’s Micrashell was born as a socially responsible solution to safely allow people to interact in close proximity. Specifically designed to satisfy the needs of nightlife, live events, and entertainment industries, Micrashell is a virus-shielded, easy to control, fun to wear, disinfectable, fast to deploy personal protective equipment (PPE) that allows socializing without distancing.

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Source: Capslock Magazine

Following the death of George Floyd, masses of people gathered across the US and around the globe, calling on elected officials to address long-standing systemic racism and inequalities, from police brutality to mass incarceration to healthcare.

The massive human rights movements — crossing age, borders, colors, and genders — have reignited an otherwise downcast form of communication amid the many struggling to organize, and fighting to remain informed: the sharing of Google Docs.

Nevertheless, the world processing software — that allows users to smoothly generate, edit and share documents online — has been used since 2010 for various tasks, as a messaging-app for students to scientists cataloging what animals fart, the personal, direct platform for collaboration has become a perfect way for like-minded individuals to connect about political issues across the country. Hence, the web-based software has been the focal point for various different movement throughout the latest years, most importantly: in 2016, to fight the rampant misinformation campaigns around the elections, from 2017 to protest immigration bans and advance the #MeToo movement, in 2018 to campaign for the Democrats during the midterm elections, and most recently, to deal with the wave of lockdowns, by turning Google Docs into an escape room, a stand-up comedy venue, and a collaborative puzzle factory. …

Thanks to advanced human-machine interfaces, our mouth won’t serve that purpose exclusively anymore, yet we might still speak for romantic reasons.

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[Credits: Neuralink]

First presented in July 2019, Elon Musk’s Neuralink is a tech startup aiming to connect human brains directly with machines. In February 2020, Musk reiterated this goal. He claimed the team could implant the first chips in “less than a year.”

From there, the goal would be to cover more patients and offer more features. During Joe Rogan podcast appearance, Musk suggested it could help stop epileptic seizures, restore the ability for stroke patients to speak or restore memory in Alzheimer’s patients. Not bad.

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Silk Leaf by Julian Melchiorri

At zero gravity it is impossible to grow any type of plant and this creates big problems as regards oxygen reserves in space travel. Thanks to a biomimicry approach, an engineering student solved this problem by designing the first artificial biological leaves.

Melchiorri’s Silk Leaf project, which he developed as part of the Royal College of Art’s Innovation Design Engineering course in collaboration with Tufts University silk lab, consists of chloroplasts suspended in a matrix made out of silk protein.

[Credit: Dezeen]

“The material is extracted directly from the fibers of silk,” Melchiorri explains. It has an amazing property of stabilizing molecules. I extracted chloroplasts from plant cells and placed them inside this silk protein. As an outcome, I have the first photosynthetic material that is living and breathing as a leaf does.”

For their operation, only light and water are needed.

Having the necessity to provide water to the chloroplasts to enable photosynthesis, another embedded technology to deliver water to the chloroplasts has been introduced, inspired by how natural leaves work. …

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