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MIT student blogger Natnael G. '15

What’s Making Me Happy: Week 4 by Natnael G. '15

Finishing Exams and The Future!

Week 1 Spider-Man, Nina Yuen, and Sarah Kay

Week 2: TableTop, Net Neutrality, and Complexity Theory

Week 3: Independent Video Games, X-Men, and Interstellar

Hello everyone, sorry for the three week delay on the latest list of things that are making me happy but there were these pesky exams nipping at my heels and it seemed a bit irresponsible to not devote my full attention to them. With that said though, exams have come and gone and I’m back to update you guys with a few things that’ve made me happy over these past few weeks. The major theme here is the future, robotic arms, space flight, modular apartments and more!

(Hover over titles for actual story)

 

MIT’s Marvel Cosplay Department Makes a Breakthrough

Growing up there wasn’t a kid at school who didn’t dream of robotic suits and futuristic extensions of the human body, whether it was Doctor Octopus, Apocalypse or Iron Man, we were always left in awe. In this piece of news we have two groups at MIT who are both working on robotic arm extensions for the purpose of added worker efficiency. Could you imagine how much I could get done with two extra arms? Luckily, NCIS has tackled the question.

New York Apartments To Finally Be Hospitable

Having lived in the primarily rural, occasionally suburban, land of Kansas for the last 14 years, I have a largely different definition of how much living space is necessary than my urban dwelling classmates do. With that said though, my ideal location to move after graduation would probably be NYC/San Francisco/Seattle/etc. so I need to get used to the cost/size/neighbourhood trade-off that living in a city brings. In this article, the Media Lab shows off a modular apartment they have been designing that comes fully equipped with hidden bathrooms, sliding dining rooms and disappearing bedrooms.

SPAAAAAACE

Space travel and the idea of becoming an astronaut single handedly fuelled a generation of STEM majors. As a kid who went to a high school with an aerospace program, every one of us had read Rocket Boys and looked forward to a future with commercial space travel. While it’s probably still infeasible from a financial point of  view the news that Elon Musk’s company SpaceX has unveiled the second iteration in their manned space ship gives us hope that the commercial option is not too far off and maybe I’ll be able to afford it in my lifetime.

Quantum Teleportation – A.K.A Magic

In a previous life(a.k.a 4 years ago) I wanted to be a physicist because it was articles like this that made me excited about the world. It does a wonderful job of taking the reader step by step through what you think teleportation is, a formal definition of teleportation and how this new research achieves this goal. And the best part is that this teleportation is used to send bits of data. In a world where the speed of light is a limiting factor in all of our transmission of data, this is an interesting way of sidestepping the current issues.

Google Believes Everyone Should Have Access to Cat Videos

As a fairly strong proponent of the internet, and all of the good that it’s spread can do, I enjoy following philanthropic efforts to do just this. From the One Laptop Per Child to this new satellite initiative I appreciate it when companies make an effort to spread information to those who can benefit from it.

Google Glass? How About InteraXon Brain!

Wearable technology has been something that I’ve been keeping an eye on since the Google Glass, Pebble, Galaxy Gear and Fit Bit all grew in popularity. The Muse is without a doubt one of the more interesting concepts that I’ve seen.  The idea of having the ability to scan your brain at your finger tips is without a doubt one of the most futuristic things I can think of. I’m looking forward to a future with a Glass/Fit Bit/Muse combination that gives me a full HUD (Heads Up Display) with all of the information I would need in a sleek Scifi package. Think about having the ability to go to a doctor and simply upload all of your vitals from the last few weeks for them to analyze, it’s an amazing concept.

Elon Musk and Tesla Go Against The Patent Grain

The same day that a study suggests that Patent Trolling Hinders Startups, Tesla, a fully electric car company that has made many revolutions in the field, decided to open their patents and assure people that they will not sue for using concepts from their patents. The press release is very short and I recommend reading it to understand why they didn’t do this from the start. I hope more companies will take the same stance!

E3!

There are few weeks of the year that makes a gamer more excited than E3. Every year we listen to cringe worthy speeches from management types followed by amazing trailers and the occasional bit of gameplay. And for this one week we ignore how different the actual game is from what we see in E3 so that we can get hyped and come together as a community.

And with that I’ll finish asking you guys a simple question, what’s making you happy this week?