Solstice Visuals

Entertainment for the creative mind.

Posts tagged with 'technology'.

How To Stop People From Seeing You’ve Read A Private Message On Facebook

An implication of Facebook’s most recent update (which has been there for a few months now) is that you know when your friends read your message. How annoying is that? 

Personally, that should be none of their business. Let’s say you read it and intend to reply to it later for whatever reason, some people probably feel they are being ignored. There are obviously a thousand reasons you can think of why it shouldn’t be there. No matter what, it shouldn’t be there to begin with. It probably causes more problems than it fixes. 

There are a few ways to circumvent this. 

Method 1 - Extensions :
There’s an extension in Chrome that allows you to stop them from seeing when you’ve read the message. 

Extension: Link

I tried it out. Apparently based on the reviews, it either works great or there’s one small issue. The issue is that it keeps the messages marked as unread. 

There’s also one more you can try out which works across all browsers (in theory): 

Chat Undetected

So if it works for you, enjoy! If not, read further. 

Method 2 - Hovering over your message: 

For Safari users, you can hover over the message without clicking on it to bring up the full message. So you can read it without having to click on it. It won’t notify the recipient that you’ve read it. 

(Thanks to Cristy for that tip)

Method 3 - E-mail subscriptions:

You can subscribe to getting e-mail alerts for messages. This way you can read the full message in your e-mail without clicking on the message itself. 

(Thanks to Sarah for that tip)

Why You Need To Be Excited About Graphene!

The European Union just invested $1.35 Billion to research graphene’s use. This isn’t a regular fund, this is insane. 

So what is it? It’s the ‘world’s strongest material’ that is also exceptionally thin, and an unbelievable conductor of heat and electricity.  

So what, right? Wrong. 

"Like iron or plastic or silicon, a lot of materials scientists think graphene is going to be one of those things that quite literally launches an era, like the Industrial Revolution or the Digital Age."

It will be in everything from light and strong cameras, computers, cars, and so much more. 

"Andre Geim and Konstantin Novoselov, first made graphene in 2004 at the University of Manchester, later winning them the Nobel Prize in Physics."

This will be coming down the pipeline in 10 years. It’s going to happen.


Read more about it here:

The Highway Of The Future

When you look at our infrastructure, you see miles and miles of road. It’s such a massive undertaking to be able to modify all of it. With brilliant minds, comes change. 

Later this year, the Netherlands will be home to a Smart Highway that will feature luminous road markings that glow at night and temperature sensitive markings that become visible when the road surface is near freezing. In the coming years the Smart Highway will debut several other innovations including induction lanes for charging electric cars and wind-powered lights that are activated by the draft from passing cars. Smart Highway is a collaboration between Studio Roosegaarde and Heijmans Infrastructure.

(Source: Laughing Squid)

The Future Possibilities Of Photography: Projection Mapping

Recently, Subaru created this impressive display in Japan, almost fusing the virtual world with reality by projection mapping. 

The first thing I thought of was the applications to Photography, being able to create your own virtual landscapes through a projector.

Maybe it’s a far stretch, however the video itself is highly entertaining at face value.  

[Thanks to Jack Strutz for sending this in to us.]

Kodak’s First Digital Camera

Way back in 1975 — when Kodachrome color slides and Kodak Instamatics were all the rage — Kodak researcher Steve Sasson built the first digicam, cobbled together from spare parts and bleeding edge digital technology.

The lens was from a used parts bin on Kodak’s Super 8 camera assembly line, it used a futuristic CCD image sensor (now commonplace) and took 23 seconds to record a crude 100 line black and white image onto cassette tape.

Sasson explains, "On the side of our portable contraption, we shoehorned in a portable digital cassette instrumentation recorder.  Add to that 16 nickel cadmium batteries, a highly temperamental new type of CCD imaging area array, an a/d converter implementation stolen from a digital voltmeter application, several dozen digital and analog circuits all wired together on approximately half a dozen circuit boards, and you have our interpretation of what a portable all electronic still camera might look like."

The device was semi-portable, and a massive VCR-sized microcomputer was used to display the images on a TV screen using a primitive frame store, but I doubt that the Kodak executives saw digital technology as a credible threat to their existing product line.


Thanks to Chris Zupo for the find!

The Underwater Car That Acts As A Shark Cage

With Shark Week kicking off, here’s a cool car from Volkswagon that is basically a shark cage on wheels that can drive around the ocean floor. Now you can drive around with sharks. Just don’t stick your hand out of the car while going at any speed. 

And good luck getting back to the surface. 

Sight - The Future Of Augmented Reality (Short Story)

With Google’s glasses coming out soon, it will be a start to a world where we will begin overlapping the virtual world. It will be interesting to see. Based on that concept, this short story goes into a bit of detail.

Be sure to watch it till the end, you won’t regret it. 

They’ve Done It - Wireless Electricity Is Here

The decision to invest in an electric vehicle would be much easier to justify if the car in question offered unlimited range. That appears to be the concept behind a Toyohashi University research group’s wireless power prototype, which can successfully transmit electricity through a 10 centimeter-thick concrete block.

During a demonstration in Yokohama, Japan, the team sent between 50 and 60 watts of power through a pair of concrete blocks to two tires, which then juiced up a light bulb (you can see the rig just above). The project is called EVER (Electric Vehicle on Electrified Roadway), and could someday be used to keep cars moving along a highway without any need to pull over for a recharge, thanks to a constant stream of electricity coming from below the road. There are some serious obstacles to overcome before EVER can get some wheels turning — namely, a need to pump nearly 100 times the current maximum load through concrete that’s twice as thick as what they’ve managed today, not to mention improving undisclosed efficiency levels — but the group reportedly said that it’s up to the task, making us fairly optimistic that such a solution could one day get us from A to B without petrol. Until then, you’ll probably want to plan out a pit stop or two before you leave the garage. - Endgadget 

Nike’s New Olympic Suit For Sprinters

That’s it, I’m dimpling everything from now on. I’ll even wear this when I go get my groceries. 

Members of the American Olympic athletics team will have a technical advantage over their fastest rivals.

Thanks to a high-tech running suit that takes inspiration from a golf ball.

Nike - who sponsor the U.S. team - have unveiled the TurboSpeed suit, which they claim can knock 0.23 seconds off a 100 metre sprint.

The time may not sound much by your ordinary jogger’s standards but when it comes to the fastest race in the world, every millisecond counts.

Take U.S. sprinter Walter Dix’s time in the 100 meter sprint at the 2008 Beijing Olympics, for example.

The bronze medal winner lost out to world champion Jamaican Usain Bolt by a mere 0.22 seconds.

(Source: Daily Mail)

Magic Cube Laser Projects A Keyboard On Any Flat Surface

If you like touch surfaces, this is for you. Either way, it’s almost a keyboard on the go when you can’t carry one with you. It also doubles as a mouse and had gestures. It connects with your computer (mac/pc) and android devices. 

Available on

Magic Cube by Celluon is a revolutionary and patented mobile input device. It’s a virtual laser keyboard that doubles as a multi-touch mouse in one easy-to-use product. It works with Apple iOS 4 and Mac OS X, Android, all Windows platform via USB/Bluetooth (HID). This bad boy will turn heads everywhere you go - simply pair Magic Cube to any mobile device using Bluetooth (HID) and you’re good to go! Contact for more information or contact your local retailer. Happy typing!

Compact Device Projects Keyboard Interface Onto Any Flat Surface


Siemens Smart Stove Lets You Place Pans Anywhere On Stove

This stove seems to be both good news and bad news. 

Siemens’ subsidiary, Thermador, revealed its Freedom Induction Cooktop at CES 2012 earlier this year. Now, Siemens will design its own full-surface induction cooktop as part of its home appliances range. The unique stove will have 48 conductors to allow pots and pans to be placed anywhere on the flat ceramic surface. There would also be a touch screen that can detect and display the size, shape, and location of each cookware.

The kitchen unit will also be more energy efficient than traditional fixed stoves as it enables a continuous and even heat distribution. Siemens showcased a demo of the cooktop at Eurocucina 2012, a kitchen design exhibit in Milan, Italy

Siemens Smart Surface Lets You Place Pans Anywhere On The Stove


Technology Gets Creepy: A Display That Reacts To Human Interaction

Sigh, humanity, I’m not sure where you are headed with this technology. So apparently there’s an image that knows when you kiss it, and reacts accordingly. 

I’m shaking my head and laughing at the same time. 

Art Marries Purpose: The BMW i8 Spyder Concept

What may be very recognizable from the Mission Impossible Ghost Protocol film, here’s the updated convertible variant of the BMW i8, appropriately titled the ‘spyder concept’. 

In the video, you can hear the hum of it that matches the sleek body. 

It’s a beautiful thing when art carries into everything. 

BMW recently unveiled images of their latest BMW i8 Spyder concept car, which is the convertible version of the car Tom Cruise drove in Mission impossible 4 late last year. Unlike the coupe, the Spyder has a two-section folding roof and upward-opening doors. The interior features an 8.8-inch (22.4 cm) screen display, which BMW claims, shows “all the relevant driving information in three-dimensional, high-resolution quality.”

Inside the hood, the hybrid has both a 131 hp electric motor to drive the front wheels and a 223 hp turbocharged gas three-cylinder powering the rear wheels, which allows for front-wheel, rear-wheel, or all-wheel drive. The i8 Spyder tops out at 155 mph, goes from 0-62mph in five seconds, and most impressively, does so while maintaining an impressive 78 miles per gallon!

[Via Source]