Innovation | Smithsonianhttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/rss/innovation/RSS feed for InnovationenFri, 26 May 2017 15:00:58 +0000When a Jet-Powered Car Raced in the Indianapolis 500http://www.smithsonianmag.com/innovation/jet-powered-car-raced-indy-500-180963240/The racecar tore up the track and dazzled fans at the legendary competition—and then vanished Fri, 26 May 2017 15:00:58 +0000Just a Few Self-Driving Cars Could Fix Phantom Traffic Jamshttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/innovation/few-self-driving-cars-could-fix-phantom-traffic-jams-180963472/A new study suggests they can help get rid of stop-and-go traffic on highways. Fri, 26 May 2017 14:05:00 +0000Tweaking the Tiny Electrical Charges Inside Cells Can Fight Infectionhttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/innovation/using-bodys-own-electricity-fight-infection-180963460/It works in tadpoles. Could it work in humans?Fri, 26 May 2017 09:01:00 +0000The Next Generation of Military Prosthetics Is Breaking New Groundhttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/smithsonian-institution/next-generation-military-prosthetics-breaking-new-ground-180963448/At the Smithsonian’s Military Invention Day, visitors experienced how military innovation is helping society Thu, 25 May 2017 14:00:00 +0000This Flying Gas Station Can Carry 200,000 Lbs. of Fuelhttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/videos/category/innovation/this-flying-gas-station-can-carry-200000-lb/The KC-135 Stratotanker plays a crucial role in keeping U.S. fighter jets up in the air. That's because this 136-foot long aircraft is a flying gas tankThu, 25 May 2017 12:00:00 +0000Why Your Next Favorite Fictional Protagonist Might Be on the Autism Spectrumhttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/innovation/next-favorite-fictional-protagonist-autism-spectrum-180963418/Fiction can reframe misunderstood mental conditions like autismWed, 24 May 2017 16:00:00 +0000Bjarke Ingels Makes the Impossible Concretehttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/innovation/bjarke-ingels-makes-impossible-concrete-180963301/The star architect is mapping out a new daring plan for the SmithsonianWed, 24 May 2017 15:00:00 +0000Can Human Mortality Really Be Hacked?http://www.smithsonianmag.com/innovation/human-mortality-hacked-life-extension-180963241/Backed by the digital fortunes of Silicon Valley, biotech companies are brazenly setting out to “cure” agingWed, 24 May 2017 15:00:00 +0000Prosthetic Limb 'Sees' What Its User Wants to Grabhttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/innovation/hand-sees-helps-amputees-180963382/Adding computer vision and deep learning to a prosthetic makes it far more effectiveTue, 23 May 2017 17:48:48 +0000A Visit to Seoul Brings Our Writer Face-to-Face With the Future of Robotshttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/innovation/visit-seoul-writer-future-robots-180963238/In the world’s most futuristic city, a tech-obsessed novelist confronts the invasion of mesmerizing machinesTue, 23 May 2017 15:00:00 +0000An App to Make You a Better Public Speakerhttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/innovation/app-make-you-better-public-speaker-180963384/Orai, created by two college students, uses AI to help people become more fluent, confident speakers through consistent practice and feedback. Tue, 23 May 2017 14:06:19 +0000How a Tiny Worm is Irritating the Most Majestic of Giraffes http://www.smithsonianmag.com/smithsonian-institution/how-tiny-worm-is-irritating-most-majestic-giraffes-180963260/They sound horrifying and look worse. A Smithsonian researcher is investigating the cause of these grotesque skin lesions Fri, 19 May 2017 18:12:01 +0000Seeing in the Dark: The History of Night Vision http://www.smithsonianmag.com/innovation/seeing-dark-history-night-vision-180963357/In honor of Military Invention Day, a look at night vision technology throughout the yearsFri, 19 May 2017 17:08:12 +0000Giving Marines the Tools to Build Drones on the Battlefieldhttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/innovation/one-day-marines-could-be-building-drones-battlefield-180963383/Through a program called Marine Makers, they're learning how to build devices, and to be more innovative thinkersFri, 19 May 2017 16:05:51 +0000This Marine Compares Flying the Harrier to Riding a Dragonhttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/videos/category/innovation/this-marine-compares-flying-the-harrier-to-r_1/Harrier's unique takeoff style and agility owes a lot to its 47-foot frame and mere 15,000 pounds in weight--almost half the size of modern fighter jetsFri, 19 May 2017 12:00:00 +0000How World War I Changed Weather Forecasting for Goodhttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/history/how-world-war-i-changed-weather-good-180963360/ Prior to the Great War, weather forecasters had never considered using mathematical modelingThu, 18 May 2017 16:03:44 +0000How the Military Helmet Evolved From a Hazard to a Bullet Shieldhttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/smithsonian-institution/how-military-helmet-evolved-hazard-bullet-shield-180963319/With the development of Kevlar and advanced industrial design, soldiers are now better protected from traumatic brain injury Tue, 16 May 2017 17:53:18 +0000To Save Desert Tortoises, Make Conservation a Real-Life Video Gamehttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/science-nature/save-tortoises-researchers-are-making-conservation-real-life-video-game-180963289/Traditional techniques weren't working for the raven-ravaged reptile. So researchers got creative Tue, 16 May 2017 14:30:00 +0000This Invention Makes a Gardener Out of Anyonehttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/innovation/invention-makes-gardener-out-anyone-180963299/Seedsheets founder and CEO Cameron MacKugler designs the garden. You just have to water it.Mon, 15 May 2017 15:20:38 +0000This App Could Bring Sex Ed To All Studentshttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/innovation/app-bring-sex-ed-all-students-180963275/Real Talk helps middle schoolers access reliable sex ed information using storytelling, regardless of whether they have internet at homeMon, 15 May 2017 13:00:00 +0000A Rare Public Display of a 17th-Century Mayan Manuscript http://www.smithsonianmag.com/smithsonian-institution/17th-century-mayan-manuscript-displayed-rare-public-display-180963272/With the book newly digitized, scholars are reinterpreting a story of native resistance from within its pagesFri, 12 May 2017 18:18:49 +0000Five Ways Ultrasound Is Changing Medicine, Martian Exploration and Even Your Phonehttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/innovation/five-futuristic-ultrasound-changing-medicine-180963277/If you thought ultrasound was only for prenatal care, think againFri, 12 May 2017 17:20:45 +0000Soon, You Could Be Able to Tell if Your Aquarium Fish Was Caught With Cyanidehttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/science-nature/can-we-ever-have-cyanide-free-aquarium-fish-180963255/A new handheld detector aims to root out this widespread, destructive practice Thu, 11 May 2017 16:20:57 +0000Bespoke Produce? A New Farming Venture Tweaks Veggies To Suit Consumers' Needshttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/innovation/bespoke-produce-new-farming-venture-tweaks-veggies-suit-consumers-needs-180963247/Bowery, a new indoor farming company, offers "customized" greens and herbsWed, 10 May 2017 16:05:06 +0000Patents (Only) a Mother Could Love http://www.smithsonianmag.com/innovation/patents-mother-could-love-180963155/For Mother's Day, we've pulled some of history's wackiest patented ideas for mothers and childrenWed, 10 May 2017 15:02:36 +0000Is Artificial Intelligence the Key to Personalized Education?http://www.smithsonianmag.com/innovation/artificial-intelligence-key-personalized-education-180963172/AI expert Joseph Qualls thinks it will change the way kids learn. But it also raises some big issues. Tue, 09 May 2017 13:00:00 +0000This Device Translates Text To Braille in Real Timehttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/innovation/device-translates-text-braille-real-time-180963171/Team Tactile hopes to create an inexpensive and portable device that can raise text right off the pageMon, 08 May 2017 17:55:38 +0000A New Color Printing Technique Borrows From Bird Feathershttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/innovation/new-color-printing-technique-borrows-from-bird-feathers-180963154/Structural coloration, like that in peacock plumage, holds promise for images that don't fade awayFri, 05 May 2017 18:05:16 +0000How Electrified Steel Could Suck Toxic Metals From the Oceanhttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/science-nature/electrified-steel-suck-toxic-metals-from-ocean-180963156/After a century of strip mining and deforestation, New Caldonia researchers are working to de-contaminate marine watersFri, 05 May 2017 14:39:11 +0000Will This Artificial Womb One Day Improve the Care of Preemies?http://www.smithsonianmag.com/innovation/will-this-artificial-womb-one-day-improve-care-preemies-180963136/A new treatment, tested on lambs, involves letting fetuses mature in fluid-filled sacsFri, 05 May 2017 13:42:30 +0000Could a Doodle Replace Your Password?http://www.smithsonianmag.com/innovation/could-doodle-replace-your-password-180963139/Drawing your own unlock pattern on a touchscreen is faster and easier to remember than a password, and much harder to crackThu, 04 May 2017 15:29:40 +0000What Was the Protest Group Students for a Democratic Society? Five Questions Answeredhttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/history/what-was-protest-group-students-democratic-society-five-questions-answered-180963138/Todd Gitlin, former president of Students for a Democratic Society, shares his perspective on protest in the 60s and nowThu, 04 May 2017 15:03:53 +0000Lifting an Unwieldy 75-Ton Hovercraft Out of the Waterhttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/videos/category/innovation/lifting-an-unwieldy-75-ton-hovercraft-out-of/When you're crane-lifting a giant hovercraft into a ship's hold, plenty can go wrongTue, 02 May 2017 12:00:00 +0000A Digital Archive of Slave Voyages Details the Largest Forced Migration in Historyhttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/history/digital-archive-slave-voyages-details-largest-forced-migration-history-180963093/An online database explores the nearly 36,000 slave voyages that occurred between 1514 and 1866Mon, 01 May 2017 16:54:58 +0000Does Creativity Breed Inequality in Cities?http://www.smithsonianmag.com/innovation/does-creativity-breed-inequality-in-cities-180963086/Richard Florida thinks so. In his new book, the urban theorist says sometimes the most innovative cities also have the worst social and economic disparityFri, 28 Apr 2017 18:32:07 +0000There's No Snoozing in Class With This Chemistry Apphttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/innovation/theres-no-snoozing-class-chemistry-app-180963080/Chem101 allows professors to push out exercises for students to do on their devices, increasing classroom engagementFri, 28 Apr 2017 17:19:56 +0000Students’ Brains Sync Up When They’re in an Engaging Class, Neuroscience Showshttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/science-nature/how-sitting-through-same-class-gets-your-brains-same-wavelength-180963075/What does it really mean to get our brains on the same wavelength? Fri, 28 Apr 2017 15:00:53 +0000Using a New Roadmap to Democratize Climate Changehttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/smithsonian-institution/using-new-roadmap-democratize-climate-change-180963047/A new tool aims to bypass governments and put the power of climate action in the people’s handsFri, 28 Apr 2017 13:00:00 +0000In an Emergency, You'll Want This Hi-Tech First Aid Kithttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/innovation/in-emergency-youll-want-this-hi-tech-first-aid-kit-180963062/Ram Fish, founder and CEO of 19Labs, talks about developing his clinic-in-a-boxThu, 27 Apr 2017 12:33:55 +0000Keeping Vaccines Safe in Tiny "Cages"http://www.smithsonianmag.com/innovation/keeping-vaccines-safe-tiny-cages-180963045/By encasing vaccines in silica, researchers could eliminate the need to refrigerate them during transportationWed, 26 Apr 2017 15:20:46 +0000Making Robots That Can Work With Their Handshttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/innovation/making-robots-can-work-their-hands-180963024/For robots to be most useful when working alongside humans, they'll have to literally lend us a hand when our own two are not enoughTue, 25 Apr 2017 15:05:13 +0000How Scientists Use Teeny Bits of Leftover DNA to Solve Wildlife Mysteries http://www.smithsonianmag.com/science-nature/how-teeny-bits-leftover-dna-help-scientists-track-elusive-species-180963011/Environmental DNA helps biologists track rare, elusive species. It could usher in a revolution for conservation biologyTue, 25 Apr 2017 14:03:39 +0000Why We Need To Start Listening To Insectshttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/science-nature/why-we-need-start-listening-insects-180963014/You may not think of the buzz and whine of insects as musical, but the distinctive pitch of mosquito wingbeats could tell us how to fight malariaTue, 25 Apr 2017 13:34:00 +0000Dismantling a Huge Howitzer for a Precarious Movehttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/videos/category/innovation/dismantling-a-huge-howitzer-for-a-precarious_1/This 200-ton howitzer artillery gun is too heavy to transport in one piece. The answer is to split it in twoTue, 25 Apr 2017 12:00:00 +0000How Jazz, Flappers, European Émigrés, Booze and Cigarettes Transformed Designhttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/smithsonian-institution/how-jazz-flappers-european-emigres-booze-and-cigarettes-transformed-design-180962977/A new Cooper-Hewitt exhibition explores the Jazz Age as a catalyst in popular styleFri, 21 Apr 2017 13:00:00 +0000A New Sensor That Looks and Acts Like Fruit Could Reduce In-Transit Produce Wastehttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/innovation/new-sensor-that-looks-acts-like-fruit-could-reduce-in-transit-produce-waste-180962986/Swiss scientists have developed a temperature sensor that provides important data while packed with fruit in transport and storageThu, 20 Apr 2017 18:03:19 +0000Augmented Reality Could Change Health Care—Or Be a Faddish Dudhttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/innovation/augmented-reality-could-change-health-care-or-be-faddish-dud-180962945/Doctors and engineers at the University of Maryland team up to build a tool that projects images and vital information right above a patientThu, 20 Apr 2017 14:10:18 +0000You Can Now 3D Print Glasshttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/innovation/you-can-now-3d-print-glass-180962951/German researchers have developed a technique for 3D printing strong, transparent glass products, such as jewelry, lenses and computer partsWed, 19 Apr 2017 17:15:51 +0000How to Resurrect a Lost Languagehttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/innovation/how-resurrect-lost-language-180962937/Piecing together the language of the Miami tribe, linguists Daryl Baldwin and David Costa are creating a new generation of speakersWed, 19 Apr 2017 14:48:59 +0000Medieval Medical Books Could Hold the Recipe for New Antibioticshttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/innovation/medieval-medical-books-could-hold-recipe-new-antibiotics-180962947/A team of medievalists and scientists look back to history—including a 1,000-year-old eyesalve recipe—for cluesWed, 19 Apr 2017 13:00:00 +0000The Ceramicist Who Punched His Potshttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/smithsonian-institution/ceramicist-who-punched-his-pots-180962930/Influenced by avant-garde poets, writers and Pablo Picasso, Peter Voulkos experimented with the increasingly unconventionalWed, 19 Apr 2017 13:00:00 +0000Can a Camera, a QR Code and Some Bubbles Test For E. Coli In Our Food?http://www.smithsonianmag.com/innovation/can-camera-qr-code-and-some-bubbles-test-for-e-coli-in-our-food-180962933/MIT researchers are pursuing a newer, faster test for foodborne pathogensTue, 18 Apr 2017 14:45:01 +0000How Glowing Soil Can Help Find Land Mineshttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/innovation/how-glowing-soil-can-help-find-land-mines-180962918/Using genetically engineered bacteria and lasers, Israeli scientists have devised a unique way to detect buried explosivesTue, 18 Apr 2017 13:00:00 +0000New Electronic Labels Could Alert You When Your Milk Spoilshttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/innovation/moving-newspaper-photos-like-harry-potter-could-soon-be-reality-180962911/New 2D printed electronics made of the nanomaterial graphene could be used in newspapers, self-updating price tags and moreMon, 17 Apr 2017 15:26:59 +0000The First Step to Shipping a Chopper? Remove the Bladeshttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/videos/category/innovation/the-first-step-to-shipping-a-chopper-remove/When a high-tech helicopter like the Sikorsky S-92 needs to be transported on a cargo plane, it's crucial that every rotor blade is dismantledMon, 17 Apr 2017 12:00:00 +0000Threading an Oil Pipe 3,000 Feet Beneath the Ocean Floorhttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/videos/category/innovation/threading-an-oil-pipe-3000-feet-beneath-the/The brief is simple: Plunge a 22-inch-diameter casing pipe through a wider 36-inch conductor pipe 3,000 feet underneath the bottom of the oceanFri, 14 Apr 2017 12:00:00 +0000Seduced By a Rare Parrothttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/science-nature/seduced-rare-parrot-180962855/What can conservationists learn from New Zealand’s official “spokesbird,” a YouTube celebrity who tries to mate with people’s heads?Thu, 13 Apr 2017 17:58:24 +0000Scientists Can Tell What Fish Live Where Based On DNA in the Waterhttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/innovation/scientists-can-tell-what-fish-live-where-based-on-dna-in-water-180962894/A new study of the Hudson River estuary tracked spring migration of ocean fish by collecting water samplesThu, 13 Apr 2017 15:31:46 +0000The Patents and Trademarks Behind Jelly Beanshttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/sponsored/patents-and-trademarks-behind-jelly-beans-180962873/Inventors have been improving the techniques and technologies used to make jelly beans for more than 150 yearsThu, 13 Apr 2017 14:52:49 +0000These 20th-Century Technologists Sure Knew How to Throw a Partyhttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/smithsonian-institution/these-technologists-sure-knew-how-to-throw-a-party-180962747/To mark the centennial of the American Patent System in 1936, a group of innovators gathered to throw a deliciously creative celebrationThu, 13 Apr 2017 13:00:00 +0000This Alaskan Fishing Boat Does Not Answer to Stormshttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/videos/category/innovation/this-alaskan-fishing-boat-does-not-answer-to/Since the Northern Leader first set sail three years ago, it's never postponed a fishing trip due to bad weatherThu, 13 Apr 2017 12:00:00 +0000What’s the Environmental Footprint of a T-Shirt?http://www.smithsonianmag.com/innovation/whats-environmental-footprint-t-shirt-180962885/In-depth life cycle analyses are teaching us more about the environmental costs of the things we wearWed, 12 Apr 2017 18:32:54 +0000Melding Mind and Machine: How Close Are We?http://www.smithsonianmag.com/innovation/melding-mind-and-machine-how-close-are-we-180962857/Researchers separate what's science from what's currently still fiction when it comes to brain-computer interfacingTue, 11 Apr 2017 15:25:15 +0000Is This New Material a Game Changer for Thermoelectricity?http://www.smithsonianmag.com/innovation/new-material-game-changer-thermoelectricity-180962841/Researchers at the University of Utah have developed an inexpensive, non-toxic material that converts heat to electricityMon, 10 Apr 2017 15:12:41 +0000An Artificial Lung That Fits In a Backpackhttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/innovation/artificial-lung-fits-backpack-180962826/Researchers at the University of Pittsburgh are developing a device that works like the sophisticated organFri, 07 Apr 2017 18:16:38 +0000This App Puts a Science Lab in Your Pockethttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/innovation/app-puts-science-lab-your-pocket-180962796/Lab4U turns smartphones and tablets into scientific toolsFri, 07 Apr 2017 13:27:27 +0000Is Fungus the Material of the Future?http://www.smithsonianmag.com/innovation/fungus-material-future-180962791/Scientists in the Netherlands have found a way to make slippers and other household objects using fungiWed, 05 Apr 2017 13:35:47 +0000A Giant Floating Naval Hospital's Amazing Humanitarian Workhttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/videos/category/innovation/a-giant-floating-naval-hospitals-amazing-hu/During times of peace, the USNS Comfort provides medical services for people in need, all over the worldWed, 05 Apr 2017 12:00:00 +0000Stanford Researchers Map the Feelings Associated With Different Parts of Londonhttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/innovation/stanford-researchers-map-feelings-associated-with-different-parts-london-180962753/The university's Literary Lab combed British novels from the 18th and 19th centuries to determine if areas elicited happiness or fearTue, 04 Apr 2017 15:09:00 +0000How World War I Influenced the Evolution of Modern Medicinehttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/smithsonian-institution/how-world-war-i-impacted-modern-medicine-180962623/Medical technology and roles during World War I are highlighted in a new display at the National Museum of American History Tue, 04 Apr 2017 13:29:55 +0000This One-Year Alternative to College Promises to Land Students a Well-Paying Job, Debt-Freehttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/innovation/this-one-year-alternative-college-promises-land-students-well-paying-job-debt-free-180962742/Adam Braun is launching MissionU, a program that cuts to the chase and disrupts the higher education industryMon, 03 Apr 2017 16:54:04 +0000Fractal Patterns in Nature and Art Are Aesthetically Pleasing and Stress-Reducinghttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/innovation/fractal-patterns-nature-and-art-are-aesthetically-pleasing-and-stress-reducing-180962738/One researcher takes this finding into account when developing retinal implants that restore visionFri, 31 Mar 2017 14:55:31 +0000How Understanding Animals Can Help Us Make the Most of Artificial Intelligencehttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/innovation/how-understanding-animals-can-help-us-make-most-artificial-intelligence-180962737/A former animal trainer explains how we might usefully think about the limitations of artificial intelligence systemsFri, 31 Mar 2017 14:35:20 +0000Let Us Now Praise the Invention of the Microscope http://www.smithsonianmag.com/science-nature/what-we-owe-to-the-invention-microscope-180962725/Early scientists wielded this revolutionary tool to study the invisible world of microbes, and even their own semen Thu, 30 Mar 2017 18:09:06 +0000The Finnish Baby Box Is Becoming Popular Around the Worldhttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/innovation/finnish-baby-box-is-becoming-popular-around-world-180962723/But does a cardboard bassinet actually reduce infant mortality?Thu, 30 Mar 2017 16:50:42 +0000A Microwave Helmet May Help Diagnose Traumatic Brain Injuryhttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/innovation/microwave-helmet-may-help-diagnose-traumatic-brain-injury-180962720/Doctors find that a stroke-detection technology could be useful in screening for intracranial bleedingThu, 30 Mar 2017 13:00:00 +0000This Device Collects Water From the Cloudshttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/innovation/device-collects-water-clouds-180962705/CloudFisher does exactly as its name implies—drawing water down from the skyWed, 29 Mar 2017 17:07:11 +0000This Little-Known Math Genius Helped America Reach the Stars http://www.smithsonianmag.com/smithsonian-institution/little-known-math-genius-helped-america-reach-stars-180962700/A hidden figure during her lifetime, it’s time for Mary Golda Ross to be remembered as an aerospace pioneer Wed, 29 Mar 2017 14:21:54 +0000The $15,000 Robotic Cleaning That Removes a Ship's Sludgehttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/videos/category/innovation/the-15000-robotic-cleaning-that-removes-a/The remote-controlled robot that cleans the hull of a ship as big as Tonsberg costs $15,000 for its servicesWed, 29 Mar 2017 12:00:00 +0000