Friday Morning Report

By Craig Cmehil | a different view before the weekend

How to track your sleep using Apple Watch or iPhone with these third-party apps

Sleep tracking has been one the most oft-requested features for Apple Watch, but Apple itself has yet to implement a solution. That hasn’t stopped developers from creating their own watchOS apps for doing it, though.<p>One of the more popular apps for sleep tracking with Apple Watch is called …

Smartwatches

Alexa Voice Service now works on connected devices in UK and Germany

Since first being unbundled back in 2015 in the U.S., Alexa Voice Service — the voice-response software that powers the Amazon Echo and Echo Dot — has been one of Amazon’s chief tools to spread its services to a range of connected devices. Now Amazon is taking its strategy international. Today it …

Automation

Japan goes fishing for space junk but 700-metre 'tether' fails

Mission to clear up Earth’s orbit ends after device created with a fishing net company fails to deploy<p>An experimental Japanese mission to clear space junk from the Earth’s orbit has ended in failure, officials said on Monday, in an embarrassment for Tokyo.<p>More than 100m pieces of rubbish are …

Space

Scientists have confirmed a brand new phase of matter: time crystals

For months now, there's been speculation that researchers might have finally created time crystals — strange crystals that have an atomic structure that repeats not just in space, but in time, putting them in constant oscillation without energy.<p>Now it's official — researchers have just reported in …

Quantum Mechanics

The MagicBridge Turns Your Keyboard And Trackpad Into A Lap-Friendly Surface

Whether they admit it or not, one of the big reasons people buy Macs is simply because of how damn good they look. Just gaze at that thing sitting in …

Gear & Gadgets

Missing Continent Was Destroyed By India And Madagascar's Tug-Of-War

Continents have disappeared throughout Earth’s history at a rather surprising pace.<p>Around 40 million years ago, the formation of the Himalayas forced …

Earth Science

Microsoft launches program to take on Chromebooks in schools

In an effort to stem the academic migration to simpler, cheaper Chromebooks, Microsoft has launched the Intune for Education program. Based on the company's corporate Intune service, it helps educators manage and set up student Windows 10 PCs and apps. As part of the initiative, the software giant …

Microsoft

A Long-Lost Dark Age Kingdom Has Been Rediscovered In Scotland

Once upon a time in Britain, shortly after the fall of the Western Roman Empire, barbarians swept the lands and chaos reigned. Kingdoms quickly rose …

Archaeology

The Internet Of Things Could Finally Get The Common Language It Needs

In the home and beyond, it's more important than ever that gadgets get standard ways to talk to each other. And there are signs of progress.<p>Smart home gadgets were everywhere at the CES trade show in January, from useful iterations on connected light bulbs and door locks to odder endeavors such as …

Here's How Scientists Invented Real-Life Sonic Screwdrivers

When it comes to science, harnessing energy is arguably what humanity does best. We often focus on the rather remarkable way we can redirect light, …

Here's A List Of Every Upcoming Space Mission For The Next Twenty Years - And Some Of Them Are Unbelievably Awesome

It seems like almost every week there's a new exciting space mission announced, from fanciful journeys to Mars to serious scientific expeditions.<p>But …

Amazon Alexa Smartphone In The Works? Company Seeks FCC Approval For Mobile Bands Based Technology

An Amazon application to the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) emerged Saturday. The original application, which was first revealed in a …

Net Neutrality

Israel builds world’s tallest solar thermal tower in Negev Desert

Rising from the desert landscape what will be the world’s tallest solar thermal tower.<p>It is still under construction 250 meters high in the Negev Desert.<p>The project is made up of three plots, with a fourth planned for the future, each with a different solar technology. The centerpiece is the solar …

Renewable Energy

20 Vintage Life Hacks from 100 Years Ago AND THEY WORK

Back in the 1900s, cigarette manufactures used to insert stiffening cards into their paper cigarette packs to add strength and help them last …

Hacking

Hands on with LEGO Boost robotics prototype at CES in Las Vegas [News and Video]

Earlier this week we brought you the news about the newly unveiled LEGO Boost robotics system, an entry-level System-based building and coding …

Turn your iPhone into a universal remote and more [Week’s Best Deals]

2017 is off and running, and there’s already a strong crop of brand new deals that top the Cult of Mac Store. This week we’ve got a comprehensive disk utility, a comprehensive bundle of lessons in iOS development, a single place to charge and organize up to 5 devices, and a coin-sized module for …

TP-Link makes mysterious entry into Wi-Fi system market at CES

The company introduces two Wi-Fi mesh systems without providing details such as pricing, availability or even Wi-Fi standard. More to come later this year.<p>TP-Link made it clear today at CES 2017 that it's ventured into the Wi-Fi system market, with not one, but two products. What's not clear, …

Wi-Fi

Netgear's Nighthawk S8000 8-port switch gets the LAN party started

When it comes to gaming, the best way to connect your rig is via a Gigabit connection, and today Netgear brought that to a next level with the Nighthawk S8000 8-port Gaming and Media Switch (model GS808E).<p>Netgear says this is a 8-port switch designed to connect Playstation, Xbox, Wii and other …

Routers

Synaptics' new biometric solution combines fingerprint authentication with facial recognition

For example, if you’re wearing gloves on a cold day, it would be much easier to select the facial recognition method rather than removing your gloves …

Security

I've owned an Amazon Echo for over a year now — here are my 19 favorite features

I activated my Amazon Echo for the first time in December 2015. It's since become one of my favorite tech gadgets ever.<p>Amazon's family of Echo speakers were some of the hottest gifts this holiday season — the smaller $50 Echo Dot has been the top-selling item on Amazon.com since November 1 — so …

Amazon Echo

Biology Professor Discovers New Clue About What’s Killing Bees

University of Wisconsin-Stout biology professor discovers a bacterium that may be responsible for years of increasing bee die-offs. KARE's Boyd Huppert reports.

Amazon wins patent for a flying warehouse that will deploy drones to deliver parcels in minutes

Amazon has been awarded a patent for a giant flying warehouse that acts as a launchpad for drones to deliver items within minutes.<p>The U.S. e-commerce …

Drones

The Face Of Scottish King Robert The Bruce Has Been Digitally Reconstructed

Robert the Bruce was one of the most feared kings of the 14th century, an all round badass who most famously led the Scots against the English in the …

How To Calm Waves On A Lake With A Spoonful Of Olive OIl

This video from YouTube channel What The Physics?! shows Greg Kestin, a theoretical physicist researcher at Harvard University, demonstrating some of …

Watch What Happens When You Shoot An “Unbreakable” Prince Rupert’s Drop With A Bullet

What’s a Prince Rupert’s drop, you ask? Well, science lovers, read on.<p>A Prince Rupert’s drop is what happens when you drop molten glass into very …

Captain Sonar: Someone finally made a great 8p board game

Review: Realtime sub-hunting game has more depth than it seems.<p>Welcome to Ars Cardboard, our weekend look at tabletop games. Check out our complete …

French village becomes home to the world's first solar panel road

The village of Tourouvre-au-Perche in Normandy, France, is taking solar panelling from the roof to the street. The town says it's just unveiled the world's first solar panel road.<p>The 1 kilometre (0.6 mile) route, covered by 2,800 square metres of electricity-generating panels, was declared open on …

Renewable Energy

Voice Is the Next Big Platform, and Alexa Will Own It

If <b>you happen to live</b> in one of the six million US homes that have so far purchased an Amazon Echo, you may think Alexa is just a voice emanating from …

Here’s a robotic hand that handles objects as delicately as a human

Researchers at Cornell University say the technology could help restore sensation to amputees.<p>Scientists at Cornell University’s Organic Robotics Lab have developed a robotic hand that has a level of sensitivity that approaches a human’s — it’s sensitive enough to detect the shape, softness and …