On (most) Fridays I post here a roundup of interesting things I’ve read and/or posted on social media since my last roundup, generally stories about emerging technologies, experiential activations, interactive art, advances in scientific research, and other things I find interesting.
Featured Image: Panasonic/Dezeen

Researchers at MIT, Microsoft, and Adobe have developed an algorithm that can reconstruct intelligible speech from an audio signal by analyzing minute vibrations of objects like a potato chip bag or glass or water:

Image: Christine Daniloff/MIT

Magic Leap’s new MICA AI avatar looks alarmingly human. Have we finally conquered the uncanny valley?

Image: Magic Leap

The US military is building a non-lethal laser weapon called Scalable Compact Ultra-short Pulse Laser System (SCUPLS) that can create a ball of plasma mid-air or right on the surface of a target and then deafen, dazzle or cause painful burns:

Image: iStock

Researchers from Kyoto University and the University of Electro-Communications have developed a robot snake that can climb a ladder, potentially useful for rescue operations:

Image: Kyoto University and University of Electro-Communications

AI Researchers have developed new tricks for detecting deepfake videos but the creators of them are already adapting:


Researchers at the Imagineering Institute in Malaysia are developing technology to send smells over the internet via electrical stimulation of the cells in nasal passages:

Image: Imagineering Institute

Panasonic’s prototype Wear Space device is a set of human blinkers designed to help people concentrate in open-plan offices:

Image: Panasonic/Dezeen

Chemists are using AI to determine the recipe for how to build any molecule from scratch, portending a bounty of new drugs and materials:

Image: Bruno Mangyoku

Uber is embracing “multimodality”, so the next time you pull up the app it might suggest you take a Jump bike instead of a car:

Image: Uber/Techcrunch

Drivers wildly overestimate what ‘semiautonomous’ cars can do – “11% said they’d be tempted to have a nap, read a paper, or watch a film while using one of the highway-assist features available today…”:


To see stories like this as I find them, follow me on LinkedIn: @josiah17 or Twitter: @acentricdev or Facebook: @nyiconoclast