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Researchers create virtual smells by electrocuting your nose – TechCrunch

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The IEEE has showcased one of the coolest research projects I’ve seen this month: virtual smells. By stimulating your olfactory nerve with a system that looks like one of those old-fashioned kids electronics kits, they’ve been able to simulate smells.

The project is pretty gross. To simulate a smell, the researchers are sticking leads far up into the nose and connecting them directly to the nerves. Senior research fellow at the Imagineering Institute in Malaysia, Kasun Karunanayaka, wanted to create a “multisensory Internet” with his Ph.D. student, Adrian Cheok. Cheok is Internet famous for sending electronic hugs to chickens and creating the first digital kisses.

The researchers brought in dozens of subjects and stuck long tubes up their noses in an effort to stimulate the olfactory bulb. By changing the intensity and frequency of the signals, they got some interesting results.

The subjects most often perceived odors they described as fragrant or chemical. Some people also reported smells that they described as fruity, sweet, toasted minty, or woody.

The biggest question, however, is whether he can find a way to produce these ghostly aromas without sticking a tube up people’s noses. The experiments were very uncomfortable for most of the volunteers, Karunanayaka admits: “A lot of people wanted to participate, but after one trial they left, because they couldn’t bear it.”

While I doubt we’ll all be wearing smell-o-vision tubes up our noses any time soon, this idea is fascinating. It could, for example, help people with paralyzed senses smell again, a proposition that definitely doesn’t stink.

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Here’s Why You Need To Stop Using Internet Explorer Immediately

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Why should you change web browsers now that Internet Explorer is at its final end? It all comes down to security. Internet Explorer is about to become inarguably insecure software, with a security level that grows ever weaker from this point forward.

Web browsers are regularly updated with new security measures and fixes to potential exploits that could allow an outside party to do all sorts of unpleasant things to your system. Stealing personal information, acquiring credit card or bank account numbers, learning passwords to one or more of your various online services, that kind of thing. Keeping your browser up-to-date reduces the risk of being compromised, and can often remove weaknesses you may not have even known were there.

By continuing to use a web browser after support has been halted, you’re leaving yourself vulnerable to attacks from cagey web links, spam emails, and so on. With no more updates on the horizon, any exploits found from here on out will never be patched up — and you probably won’t even be made aware of them since nobody is maintaining the software anymore. The longer you wait to switch to a new browser, the greater the risk.

Dropped web browser support also means non-security updates are also off the table. No more new features, no eventual improvements to clunky design, and perhaps most importantly: no compatibility updates. At some point, certain basic features just won’t work with an outdated browser anymore. Like it or not, Internet Explorer’s time is up — for real, this time.

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Sony LinkBuds S Promise ANC And All-Day Comfort

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Even though Sony suggests LinkBuds S are the smallest in-ear wireless headphones, they have still managed to cram in reasonably sized 5mm drivers. For comparison, this is only slightly smaller than the 6mm drivers used on the WF-1000XM4.

The product also gets Sony’s Integrated Processor V1 — the same chip we saw on the recently launched Sony WH-1000XM5. This chip claims to improve the overall sound quality of the product by reducing distortion and improving noise cancelation. Sony LinkBuds S earbuds also support “High-Resolution Audio Wireless” with LDAC as well as an autoplay feature that activates the moment users place the buds in their ears.

Sony’s latest earbuds claim a battery life of up to six hours, with the supplied charging case further enhancing the playback time to 14 hours. When completely discharged, the LinkBuds S can be charged for five minutes to get an additional 60 minutes of playback time.

Another interesting feature on the LinkBuds S is support for the Niantic AR game “Ingress.” Sony says LinkBuds S earbuds use sensor and spatial sound technology to combine a great visual and sonic experience. It’s also suggested by Niantic that further integration with their Lightship platform should allow expanded functionality with LinkBuds earbuds soon.

Sony’s LinkBuds S earbuds go on sale starting May 20, 2022, and come in two color options, White and Black, with a suggested retail price of 199.99. They will be available via Sony.com, Amazon, and other authorized dealers. A third color option called “Ecru” is also set to be available as an exclusive release from Best Buy.

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Acer’s 2022 Laptop Lineup Is Packed With Chromebooks And Convertibles

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The next Acer product up for discussion is the Acer Chromebook Tab 510, which — as evident from the name — is a tablet-sized device that also doubles up as a Chromebook thanks to its convertible form factor. This machine features a 10.1-inch IPS LCD panel with a resolution of 1920 x 1200 pixels. Apart from featuring an 8MP camera for occasional photos, the Acer Chromebook Tab 510 also boasts of a 5MP selfie camera, which could mostly be used for video calls. 

Speaking of video calls, that brings us to the connectivity aspects of the Tab 510. There is a 4G LTE variant of the Tab 510 that is enabled by the Snapdragon 7c Gen 2 Compute Platform. The Tab also claims 11 hours of battery life from a single charge. Like the Acer Spin 714, this smaller machine also meets MIL-STD 810H standards. This rating is made possible by an impact-resistant chassis, shock-absorbing corner bumpers, and a reinforced design. 

The company claims the Acer Chromebook Tab 510 can survive drops from as high as 48 inches. Another feature borrowed from the Spin 714 is the Antimicrobial Gorilla Glass on the surface of the touchscreen. The Tab 510 also supports a dockable stylus along with a Keyboard Folio case, both of which are optional accessories. The product is expected to go on sale starting in July 2022 with an expected starting price of $399.99

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