Posts Tagged ‘Mashable’
 
Posted in gift ideas, Inspirational Design of the Week, Just Cool by Courtney on November 7th, 2012
 

You know how we have a soft spot for innovative design? Well this week, we seem to have fallen for a new mash-up of botany and technology. Introducing the Click and Grow — the answer to the lazy gardener’s prayers! Via Mashable:

The Click and Grow flower pot and plant cartridge work like a printer and toner. The pot contains electronics, sensors, batteries, a pump and a water reservoir; the cartridge contains seeds, nutrients and software (in a microchip) for growing the plant. There are currently 13 varieties of flowers and plants, and the selection is continuously growing. Right now the available selection includes painted nettle, lamb’s ear, marigolds and more. You can also grow edible things such as basil, thyme, sage, tomatoes and chili peppers.

Founder Mattias Lepp tells Mashable all you have to do is add water and batteries (not in the same place) — everything else is done by the sensors and software. You’ll also have to find a sunny place for your plant to sit, or at least somewhere it can absorb the sun’s rays, sunshine or not.

The idea for Click and Grow began three years ago, Lepp says, while reading an article about a NASA mission in which plants were taken into space. He began fusing technology with gardening in his own backyard in Estonia to see if he could grow plants with little or no care in a harsh climate. He made several iterations of the planter and one very cold winter, he says, the device he created was able to grow tomatoes “very quickly.” The company grew from there and officially launched one year ago.

Lepp said Click and Grow should also cut down on the waste that comes from single plants being purchased in plastic containers that then get thrown away. The potting container is reusable; though the cartridges need to be replaced for each new plant.

The product retails for $59.99, with cartridges costing about $19.99 each. We’d love to get our hands on one of these for the DNA 11 offices!

 
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Posted in biotechnology, Just Cool, Science by Courtney on February 24th, 2012
 

Our DNA can unlock so many secrets and now it’s getting ready to take on the enemy! Scientists at the Harvard WYSS Institute have constructed packages of DNA dubbed “DNA origami” that might one day be used to create nanorobots capable of finding and destroying cancer cells in the human body. Via Mashable:

The nanorobots mimic a cell’s receptor system in order to communicate with cells. The cells can carry materials to cancer cells, and when the nanorobot detects the cells it’s hunting for, it will spring into action.

Once the bots were designed, the research team built the tiny barrel-shaped nanobots that measure about 35 nanometers in diameter. Each nanobot can hold molecules that are meant to be delivered to cells.

The system has yet to be tested in living organisms, but the researchers are considering testing the nanorobots in mice.

This potential DNA Origami Army could change the face of cancer treatment. Congratulations to researchers Shawn M. Douglas, Ido Bachelet, George M. Church, who are all affiliated with the WYSS Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering.

Want to make your DNA work for you? Throw your own DNA into action with a personalized DNA or Ancestry Portrait.

 
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