Open banking to encourage FinTechs

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The Australian Government is conducting a review into open banking in Australia so that banks – especially the Big Four – open up their APIs and let FinTechs offer new financial products and services. In Europe, open banking has already been mandated by the European Commission. http://www.innovationaus.com/2017/08/ScoMo-to-pry-open-bank-data?

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A smart ring for phone calls

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Orii is a smart ring that gives you full control of your smartphone from your finger. The device blends Bluetooth with bone conduction technology to allow you to take phone calls and listen to messages by touching your ear with the finger wearing the ring. https://www.springwise.com/smart-ring-allows-users-hear-talk-finger/?

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Drug addiction prevented by vaccination

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One of the best defences we have against viral infections is vaccination. Vaccines prime the body’s immune system to fight an incoming infection and have been credited with the widespread eradication of smallpox and the near-eradication of polio. There are nine vaccines currently in development that could dramatically change how humans live. They include vaccines for cancer, HIV, malaria and drug addiction. https://www.nbcnews.com/mach/science/anti-drug-vaccines-could-be-game-changer-people-battling-addiction-n749416

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An AI computer for your home

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Duo is a computer with a reflective display. It becomes noticeable only when you need it. It’s voice-activated and fully touch enabled. It has a large 27″ full 1080p display with 5-point multi-touch across the whole screen. You can control any app with your voice by talking to Albert, the AI assistant that lives inside Duo. You can personalize Albert from its name, gender, accent, and even sarcasm level. https://duo.computer/

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Combinations of human and machine outperform either working alone

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AGCO’s executives think the new version of Google Glass helps tamp down suspicions that they are replacing workers with robots that does their job better. They say they’re helping them do their job better. For tasks they have mastered, workers don’t need to look at the Glass screen. But they can wake it at any time to see where a part must go, and even zoom into an object on the display for more detail. Glass tells them, for example, what kind of bolt is needed—a wrong-sized bolt could seriously damage a motor—and specifies which wrench to use and how much torque is required. https://www.wired.com/story/google-glass-2-is-here/

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3D printed tyres that never need replacing

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Most tyres will need to be replaced about every five years, however a new 3D printed tyre from Michelin may one day outlast your vehicle. While traditional rubber tyres gradually lose their tread as a result of friction, the prototype uses 3D printers to replenish this tread as needed. A series of sensors built into the tyre monitor the tread wear and provide information about performance and maintenance. This information is relayed to you via an app, and you can then order 3D printed tread replacements. https://www.digitaltrends.com/cool-tech/3d-printed-tire-michelin-concept/

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A device that lets you add items to your cart by scanning or saying their name

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The Dash Wand is a handheld device with a microphone and a barcode scanner. When you want to purchase any of the household items, you can say the name into the Dash Wand or use the barcode scanner on it. This means you can add items that you may be running out of in your house as soon as you notice them. https://www.google.com.au/amp/m.gsmarena.com/amazon_dash_wand_lets_you_add_items_to_your_cart_by_scanning_or_saying_their_name-amp-25629.php

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A medical device that draws energy from your body

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Researchers have created a battery-free medical device that can be implanted in your body and charged using your body’s fluids. Despite advances in technology, batteries are still used within medical devices such as pacemakers, which are potentially harmful and need to be replaced throughout your lifetime via surgery. https://www.springwise.com/battery-free-implantable-medical-device-draws-energy-human-body/?

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Election night as a community event

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In the UK, all the candidates for a seat gather in community halls wearing coloured ribbons that correspond with their party. They then have to line up on stage while an official reads out their individual results.  Prime Minister Theresa May had to be on stage with not just her Labour, Liberal Democrat and Greens challengers, but also with candidates dressed up as Elmo, a Texan Elvis, and a Ned Kelly impersonator, going by the name of Lord Buckethead. https://www.google.com.au/amp/s/amp.smh.com.au/federal-politics/political-opinion/uk-election-australia-should-adopt-this-delightful-but-awful-tradition-20170609-gwnzse.html

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A robot that can valet park your car

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French startup Stanley Robotics is building robots that pick up your car at the entrance of a parking lot and park it for you. The robot can stack up to five cars in a single line, which increases parking lot efficiency by up to 50%. It also saves you frustration in finding a car space! https://techcrunch.com/2017/05/23/stanley-robotics-is-building-robots-that-can-park-your-car-for-you/

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Your face to open doors

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Beijing Normal University recently installed two facial recognition devices at the entrance way to a dormitory. Students need to either swipe their student ID card, key in their ID number, or say their name. The camera will then scan their faces for a match against records and open the door for registered residents. https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/innovations/wp/2017/05/18/your-face-can-get-you-more-than-just-toilet-paper-in-china/?

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A bike with a built-in bar

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A small wooden box is built to fit the exact dimensions of the negative space on a bicycle — and then gets filled with everything you need for drinks in the park. There’s even a tiny fold-out table. Of course, you could also use this for picnic supplies like fruit, cheese and a baguette should you prefer. https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/bike-has-built-in-bar-its-blowing-our-minds-sarah-ling

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A green future with algae as jet fuel

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Japanese firm Euglena has been cultivating a type of algae, that’s both a plant and an animal, for use in food and cosmetics and is now aiming to use it to produce energy. It aims to produce 33,000 gallons of jet fuel a year from Japan’s first algae biofuel refinery, partnering with top Japanese airline ANA. http://money.cnn.com/2017/03/24/technology/japan-algae-euglena/

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A flying car to open the 2020 Tokyo Olympics

A flying car to open the 2020 Tokyo Olympics

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Making dangerous roads safer

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#RoadsThatHonk works by alerting speeding drivers to avoid collisions with the help of SmartLife poles that use radar technology across accident prone turns. The poles are installed at key intersections, and use an advanced networked device to combine wireless technology, radar systems, and an anti-collision warning system, all powered by solar PV modules. http://www.thedrum.com/news/2017/04/27/hp-and-leo-burnett-collaborate-anti-collision-tech-roadsthathonk-campaign

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A disability-led theatre company

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Raspberry Ripple is a Disability Led theatre company aiming to create compelling theatre of a professional standard using disabled and mainstream performers, writers, directors, designers and technical artists as well as a pathway into the mainstream performing arts for disabled performers. https://pozible.com/project/launch-raspberry-ripple-productions

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A vaccine for malaria

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The World Health Organization (WHO) is now one step closer to achieving their goal of eliminating malaria by 2040. Last week WHO announced that one of several potential malaria vaccines in development has made it through a crucial phase in trials and is now ready to be field tested. https://futurism.com/worlds-first-malaria-vaccine-will-be-given-to-thousands-of-babies-in-africa/

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A practical flying car

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Terrafugia claim that The Transition® is the world’s first practical flying car. A folding-wing, two-seat, roadable aircraft, the Transition® is designed to fly like a typical Light Sport Aircraft in the air and drive like a typical car on the ground. It will run on premium unleaded automotive gasoline, fit in a standard construction single-car garage, and convert between flight and drive modes in under a minute. Orders are now being taken. https://www.terrafugia.com/the-transition/

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A day without coal-generated power in Britain

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April 21 was the first full day of coal-free power in Britain in 135 years. About half of the energy used that day came from natural gas, while the rest of the power was provided by nuclear, imported, and renewable energy sources. In fact, half of the power in the U.K. on a day-to-day basis now comes from renewables and nuclear. https://futurism.com/britain-goes-24-hours-without-coal-generated-power-for-the-first-time-in-135-years/

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A ban on alcohol supported by women

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Village women are enforcing a new prohibition law in Bihar, one of India’s poorest, most agrarian states. Since the law was introduced the crime rate has fallen sharply, brick houses are starting to be built instead of the usual mud huts and spending on things like motorbikes and appliances has risen significantly. https://mobile.nytimes.com/2017/04/15/world/asia/india-bihar-alcohol-ban-women.html?

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Fly by tiny plane instead of drive

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The obvious choice now for a trip of less than 500 km might be to drive. But what if you could show up at an airport, bypass security checkpoints, board a small hybrid-electric plane with luggage in hand, and be on the ground at your destination in about an hour — all for $25 each way? A company called Zunum Aero hopes to make that a reality, so you won’t think twice about flying on regional trips. https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/innovations/wp/2017/04/08/why-tiny-electric-planes-and-25-tickets-could-be-the-future-of-air-travel/?

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A flight past the edge of space

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In the next few years Blue Origin plans to begin flying tourists past the edge of space, 62 miles or 100 km high, where for about four minutes you’ll experience the thrill of weightlessness and view the curvature of the Earth. https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/the-switch/wp/2017/04/05/jeff-bezos-shows-off-the-crew-capsule-that-could-soon-take-tourists-to-space/?

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