Light Start – SpaceX trailer, ‘smart’ mouse trap, Breadbot, and your very own HAL 9000

SpaceX’s SxSW Falcon Heavy trailer is short but incredibly sweet

Elon Musk showed up at SxSW because of course he did and he, along with the folks responsible for Westworld (you know, the series about robot cowboys or something), debuted a new trailer. A trailer for SpaceX’s Falcon Heavy launch and “…the next part of the human story”, according to Westworld series co-creator Jonah Nolan. Even if you missed the whole hyped SpaceX Falcon Heavy/Starman launch, this brief minute-and-a-half will fill you in. This how a Monday morning should start — with David Bowie and rocket engines.

Source: SpaceX

Taking smart tech a bit far — meet the WiFi-enabled mouse trap

We’re all familiar with the internet of things (IoT), in which we’re connecting all manner of things to a main hub and the internet (ask our very own Craig Wilson about his burgeoning smart home setup). But we think we might be able to dispense with the WiFi-enabled mouse trap — unless, that is, you’re an exterminator or something. This Kickstarter project hopes to create a sensor that will sit near a standard spring mouse trap which will notify users when the trap has been sprung. Not so useful in the average home but a little more so if you’re making a profession out of it. Still, at about $25 a sensor, that could get expensive quick. If you’re keen to contribute anyway, the project is looking for $15,000 to get the ball rolling.

Source: Kickstarter

BreadBot: For when you really, really need a fresh loaf of bread

It’s tough working in a bakery. The hours are long, the work is hard, and people are never satisfied and often want fresh bread when the oven is shut down. What to do…? The BreadBot, a gadget that spits out a fresh loaf of bread every six minutes, might be a plan. The whole process is automated, requiring a human to load it up in ingredients every so often and occasionally empty the completed bread line. The BreadBot is designed to sit in stores, where people can watch it making a fresh loaf of delicious carbs in real-time. Sadly, we won’t see one here for… quite some time. It’s an American thing. To see the BreadBot in action, hit up the Wilkinson Baking website for an overview.

Source: The Verge

Maybe you can convince your very own HAL 9000 to open the pod bay doors 

If you’re a massive Kubrick or Clarke (as in Arthur C.) fan then you might want to get your order in now for a functional replica of the HAL 9000 computer from 2001: A Space Odyssey. These are being made by a company called Master Replicas Group and while a computer that responds in HAL’s voice isn’t that unusual, one that can also control much of your home is. This replica uses Amazon’s Alexa virtual assistant for its smarts, an Amazon Fire HD tablet as the display, and occasionally some of HAL’s dialogue — but the creators are looking at offering HAL for everything, including queries about the weather. Sounds good to us, as long as we don’t give it control of the doors. Want to book one? Head here, now. 

Source: Master Replicas (YouTube)


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