Monday, July 15, 2019

NASA ARTEMIS Program Picks Moon Delivery Teams

NASA recently announced that they have awarded $253.50 million to three companies that will develop robotic lunar landers as part of the ARTEMIS program. The program’s goal is to return astronauts to the moon by 2024 and to build a permanent lunar installation—a base on the moon. Once that has proven successful, astronauts will further explore the lunar south pole region and its ice deposits to find out if they are viable sources of air, water, and fuel. There are also plans to use the base as a launch center for manned missions to Mars in the future.

For decades, NASA has used private contractors and commercial partnerships, most notably with Elon Musk’s SpaceX, which delivered equipment to the International Space Station. NASA has been pleased with that success and sees it as a reason to expand those deals with the ARTEMIS program. Beginning in 2020, NASA will oversee three unmanned lunar landings that will deliver government and private sector payloads of technology and tools to build the lunar base. Construction will require specialized tools that will remain sharp and hard, because replacements won’t be easy to obtain. These tools may include drill bits tipped with cubic boron nitride, or c-BN, which is the hardest and most durable element on Earth—harder even than diamond. The payloads will also be dropped directly on the lunar surface, so the durability of the tools is of utmost importance.

Below are the three innovative corporations awarded contracts through the Commercial Lunar Payload Services program to put man on the moon once again.

Astrobotic Technology


Based in Pittsburgh, Astrobotic won $79.5 million to fly 14 payloads to Lacus Mortis, or the Lake of Death, on a lava plain on the moon’s near side. Astrobotic will use their Peregrine Lander on the missions.

Intuitive Machines

Headquartered in Houston, Intuitive Machines won $77 million to create a lander to touch down in Aceanus Procellarum, or the Ocean of Storms. Their development will be able to hitch a ride aboard a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket and carry a 220-pound payload.

Orbit Beyond


The smallest of the landers, Orbit Beyond’s Z-01 can deliver only 88 pounds of payload. Orbit Beyond will use their $97 million reward to send equipment to Mare Imbrium, the Sea of Rains, aboard the SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket. They have until September 2020 to create a working machine in their Edison, New Jersey, facility

Tuesday, July 9, 2019

3 Industries That Benefit from EMI Shielding

When vast quantities of cell phone, radio, and other signals pollute the air, the variety of frequencies begin to combat with one another, which can cause important electronics to fail. The solution to this is EMI shielding. For anyone unfamiliar with the concept, an EMI (electromagnetic interference) shield is a physical coat of conductive or magnetic metal that blocks the negative effects of electromagnetism on various types of electronic devices and communication systems. Below, we list a few of the industries that benefit from EMI shielding.

1. The Military

Most pieces of military equipment, including aircraft, tanks, and radios, utilize EMI shielding to prevent enemy equipment from interfering with or disrupting communication signals. Garbled radio signals can prevent the ability to share essential information, and disabled GPS in military vehicles can put servicemen in harm’s way. EMI shielding enables such equipment to perform properly, without the potential for complications.

2. The Medical Field

In today’s environment, there are bound to be a multitude of cellphones, tablets, and other such devices inside any hospital at any given time. Errant electromagnetic signals, however, can confuse the information that medical devices are trying to transmit and put patients’ lives at risk. EMI shielding adds a lightweight protection that guards medical machines against other frequencies, preventing critical mistakes. This allows staff, patients, and visitors to use cellphones and tablets without affecting any important machines.

3. Agriculture

This may not be an industry you’d expect to utilize EMI shielding, but like any other profession, farmers don’t have the time to deal with compromised equipment. Data collection, GPS, and drones are all becoming regular fixtures in the farming and agricultural industries—and like everything else, these devices are susceptible to the dangers of interfering radio frequencies. The agricultural industry, therefore, is another industry that benefits from the protection of EMI shielding.

Friday, June 28, 2019

6 Foolproof Ways to Increase Online Sales

Without a doubt, every business wants to boost its revenue—but it may be unsure how to do so. Perhaps this is because they’re using marketing strategies that simply don’t work anymore. Below, we share six simple ways to increase online sales and grow your customer base.

Display Testimonials


To make your business look more credible, consider posting customer reviews and testimonials. These testimonials show that previous customers have had positive experiences with your company—by reading these endorsements, new customers can develop trust with you. Don’t forget to include real names and photos; brief testimonials may not look convincing to users.

 Highlight Promotions


It’s no secret that people want to save money. Make it easier for prospective customers to find your company’s deals by promoting them in hover ads or pop-ups and at the top of each page on your website.

Pay Attention to Product Images


Generally, people can tell when you use stock photos—instead, think about hiring a photographer to capture your products in action. Quality images make your offerings look enticing to potential buyers, and your company will look more polished.

Simplify the Buying Process


Simply put, if the process of buying a product becomes too slow or complicated, users are more likely to bounce. Make checking out quick and easy for prospective customers by accepting multiple payment options or including saved preferences in the checkout process.

Target Your Preferred Audience


Of course, you want a specific type of person to buy your products or services. Thankfully, advertising platforms such as Google Ads allow you to choose your audience based on location. This way, you can decrease irrelevant traffic to your site.

Use Calls to Action


When you write CTAs, you should keep your audience in mind. By personalizing them, you increase the likelihood that people will continue to navigate your site. The goal is to create a sense of urgency so that your prospective customers feel as though they have to act fast. For example, let users know that your company is ending a sale at a certain time or that you have a limited quantity of products. 

There are numerous ways to increase online sales, but we hope our tips can help your company succeed. We prove that you don’t have to make extensive changes to your site to increase your customer base!

Friday, June 21, 2019

Note to Dog Parents: 5 of the Best Tech Products for Dogs

There’s no bond stronger than the one between a dog and its owner. Your pooch deserves only the best of the best. With all the new technology on the scene, there’s no end to the ways you can spoil your pup. Here are five of the best tech products for dogs to make both of your lives easier.

iFetch


Keep your pup playing for hours, even when you’re not home or simply don’t have the energy. iFetch is an automatic ball launcher that will change your dog’s life. Its intuitive design means both your dog’s mind and body will get a workout. Once your pooch gets the hang of it, they can entertain themselves for hours.

PetChatz


Nothing is more painful than having to say goodbye to your dog for the day. Rather than driving yourself crazy with worry, check in on them whenever you want with PetChatz. Touted as state-of-the-art digital daycare, it features two-way visual and audio, meaning both you and your pup can see each other. Best of all, to show them you really care, you can dispense a treat at the tap of a button.

Drinkwell Platinum Pet Fountain


Avoid bacteria in your dog’s drinking water and prevent it from tasting stale with the Drinkwell Platinum Pet Fountain. Its unique, flowing design aerates the water with oxygen, making it taste better and stay cleaner. This encourages your dog to drink more, meaning you won’t have to worry about them becoming dehydrated. Your pet deserves only the best of the best, and this tech product for dogs guarantees they get just that.

PupPod


Your dog’s mind needs to be challenged in order to develop. Keep your furry friend on the cutting edge with PupPod, a smart toy whose puzzles become harder as your dog gets smarter. No longer will your dog turn to chewing up the couch out of boredom: when they solve PupPod’s various puzzles, they will be rewarded with treats, leading to a sharper mind and hours of entertainment.

Whistle


No matter where your dog runs off to, you can always keep an eye on them with Whistle. This GPS device and activity tracker will make sure your pooch never strays too far from home. For dogs that need to up their exercise levels, this product is also great for monitoring activity and making sure your dog is moving enough. With Whistle, you can always be sure your pup is safe.

Getting from Point A to Point B: A Rundown on How GPS Works


GPS, which stands for Global Positioning System, has become an everyday necessity for people around the globe. While we pull up GPS apps on our phones with ease, few people know how GPS works. Find out the science behind your next road trip here.

What is GPS?

GPS is all about getting from point A to point B, but there is so much more to it than just a route to follow. GPS might seem like something that just lives in your car or your phone, but it’s actually a satellite-based navigation system. These satellites work together to send a location to a GPS receiver, and from there, it can send you directions to other locations.

The Origins and Development of GPS

Originally developed for military purposes, and still managed by the U.S. Air Force, GPS is now accessible for anyone. At its inception, GPS only had 24 satellites orbiting. This number has increased to 32, which has aided in increasing location accuracy. Since its creation in 1973, GPS has undergone many changes to become the highly functional system that it is today.

Trilateration and What it Does

In terms of how GPS works to find your location, you have trilateration to thank for that. Trilateration is the process of determining your location according to the intersection of spheres. These “spheres” are generated by a satellite, with the satellite at the center. The GPS first calculates its distance from one satellite, and then does the same for two other GPS satellites. Once those are found, it determines the intersection between the three spheres, giving users their location.

The Many Uses of GPS

Once a location is determined, there’s a whole host of things GPS can do. With that position, GPS devices can determine sunrise and sunset times, the honed-on location’s speed, and a user’s distance to their destination. From timing to location purposes, there’s no end to all the ways in which GPS is used. Pulling up a route in your car’s GPS may seem like a simple enough task, but the science behind it is truly astounding. You have those satellites above your head to thank for your smooth journey.


Monday, June 17, 2019

5 Very Real Dangers of Self-Driving Cars

Many companies around the world are pursuing new technology that will result in self-driving cars. Business executives believe they’ll be the future of travel and a safer mode of transportation. The goal is that one day people will be able to get in the car and read a book or take a nap while the car drives them to their desired location. This may be the case in 50 years, but right now, these companies cannot avoid the dangers of self- driving cars.

No Oversight


Since this new technology is in its infancy, there are no regulations governing development. Information about this new industry is limited, making it difficult to set safety standards. As of now, it is the wild west—dozens of companies want to be the first to design, develop, market, and sell self-driving cars with little to no oversight from the government or industry experts.

No Accountability


Companies are putting a lot of faith into their engineering and programming teams, as they will hold them accountable for every eventuality that could occur on the road. There is an infinite amount of problems that could happen when driving from point A to B in an autonomous vehicle. What happens when the car hits something or someone? The last thing these companies want is to become flooded with lawsuits.

More Accidents


At some point, self-driving and traditional cars will likely share the roads, which could possibly lead to more accidents. There’s an ebb and flow to roadways—people that drive them every day understand this and can account for it when making decisions. The concern is if this new technology will be able to do the same.

Hackers Taking Control


Any computer, device, or car connected to the internet is vulnerable to hacking. In spite of all the firewalls and protections companies put in place, a hacker could gain control of self-driving cars. Once in control, the car and passengers will be at the mercy of the hacker. Additionally, private data that the car stores will also be accessible and exploitable.

Radiation Exposure


These cars will have all sorts of electronics on board; we can expect to see Wi-Fi, GPS, remote controls, Bluetooth, radio, and screens to keep passengers entertained. However, all these gadgets could expose people to higher levels of electromagnetic radiation. Continued exposure to electronic radiation can lead to health problems such as high blood pressure, difficulty breathing, migraines, and an increased risk of getting cancer.

Friday, June 7, 2019

5G vs. 4G: How 5G Will Improve the Formula

4G debuted in the late 2000s, and it was an immediate technological game-changer. At the time, some people found it difficult to imagine that anything could surpass this sort of monumental achievement. However, as time progresses, so do our expectations. It’s for this reason that we’re seeing a new frontier in the technological world as 5G creeps into view.

What Makes 5G Different?


In a word, everything. At the moment, 4G is a bit tied up in terms of how much bandwidth our modern devices require. 5G provides a clean slate, as its bandwidth isn’t as cluttered as that of the 4G network. This will allow us to move selected data at a much more efficient rate.

4G peaks at a speed of 1GB per second, averaging at 10MB in terms of everyday speed. 5G, however, peaks at an average speed of 20GB per second, or 100MB with everyday speeds—meaning it’s 20 times faster than its predecessor. It’s estimated that, if it performs as expected, 5G will be able to download a 3D movie in a mere six seconds.

5G is projected to drastically improve our Internet experience. We’ll see improved Internet reliability, and the cleaner bandwidth will allow us to connect more devices to our routers without affecting their efficiency.

Will I Pay More?


Phone plans themselves may not increase in price, but our wallets may still take a hit in other respects. For one, the cost of devices could jump by $200 to $300. Also, the increased speed and quality of our Internet connections could cause greater data consumption. Higher data usage means higher costs.

However, for technology enthusiasts, this is a welcome exchange. As the production of movies and other digital media continues to grow, we need the ability to support this growth. There may certainly be an adjustment period for Internet carriers and devices, but we can expect to see an improved online experience over the next couple years.

Sink or Float? The Google Glass Takes a Second Voyage

In 2013, Google released the Google Glass, a computer in the form of eyeglasses. Sporting a $1,500 price tag, it was a highly anticipated release—a taste of the future, before merely a concept used in sci-fi films. Unfortunately, while innovative, the product did not perform as expected. In 2015, Google withdrew the glasses and placed them back on the drawing board.

Now, four years after the first iteration of this product fizzled from our memories, Google revived the Glass in a new and improved form. They’ve named this version the Google Glass Enterprise Edition 2, and we hope to see a higher level of success.

What’s New with Edition 2?


The revitalized edition of the Glass sports a lower price tag than its predecessor, rounding out at $999. According to Google’s website, “As our customers have adopted Glass, we’ve received valuable feedback that directly informed the improvements in Glass Enterprise Edition 2.”

The product is not available for sale to general consumers, as it has been designed and marketed toward corporate buyers. The glass is equipped with a miniscule 8MP camera that boasts a 640x360-pixel display, as well as a small prism above the right eye, and three microphones. It also features a longer battery life in conjunction with a shorter charging time. A full list of specs is available on Google’s website.

Along with technological feats, the Glass also sports classic practicalities. Users utilizing the Glass for manufacturing types of work will find the glasses water and dust resistant.

Has Google Found the Right Formula?


The future of the Enterprise Edition 2 has a positive outlook, but we have to wonder how this newest version will fare. It certainly seems like it should earn itself a spot in the world of useful tech, but we thought the same for the first version—we know how that ended.

Google has taken their time improving the product and narrowed down its audience to those in business, so we may see a more positive reception this time around. It may be too early to determine victory this early in the game, but Google seems to have made welcome changes to the Glass. If this venture proves successful, the world of wearable technology may be edging towards a new future.