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A deposit return scheme that reduces littering

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A deposit return scheme that experts say drastically reduces the number of plastic bottles and cans littering streets and seas is being introduced around the world. The idea has the backing of global drinks company Coca-Cola and comes amid warnings that the worldwide plastics binge poses as serious a threat as climate change. South Australia introduced container deposit legislation in 1977! https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2017/jul/04/tackle-uk-plastic-bottle-problem-with-money-back-scheme-ministers-told?

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Giving streets back to residents

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Barcelona’s new planning strategy will restrict traffic to a number of big roads, drastically reducing pollution and turning secondary streets into ‘citizen spaces’ for culture, leisure and the community. The plan is based around the idea of superilles (superblocks) – mini neighbourhoods around which traffic will flow, and in which spaces will be repurposed to “fill our city with life”, as its tagline says. https://www.theguardian.com/cities/2016/may/17/superblocks-rescue-barcelona-spain-plan-give-streets-back-residents

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An easier way to access clinical trials

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HealthMatch is a mobile app that allows you to find clinical trials in the fastest and simplest way possible in real-time and tailored to your profile. It structures and aggregates clinical-trial listing data, making it ‘machine-readable’ so that you can be ‘smart matched’ with trials relevant to your condition. By simply inputting data about your condition and answering a series of machine generated questions, you will be able to easily qualify for trials and access new treatments. You can register interest in this new app which is under development. www.healthmatchapp.com

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Robots that can fight crime

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Robots that are mini autonomous police cars paired with companion drones and facial-recognition technology will begin patrolling the streets of Dubai by the end of the year to help identify and track suspects. These robots can navigate on their own using machine-learning algorithms, but police can control them remotely from behind a computer dashboard. By 2030, Dubai plans for robots to make up 25 percent of its police force. https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/innovations/wp/2017/06/30/meet-the-newest-recruits-of-dubais-police-force-robo-cars-with-facial-recognition-tech/?

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Glow in the dark money

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The Royal Canadian Mint has unveiled its new glow-in-the-dark coin, thought to be the first of its kind. The CAD 2 coin has been created to celebrate the 150th anniversary of Canada’s confederation. The coin has been made with ink that contains luminescent material so it glows in the dark. https://www.springwise.com/worlds-first-glow-dark-coin-celebrates-canadian-anniversary/?

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Turn CO2 into fuel

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Researchers at the CSIRO and University of Adelaide have created a new catalyst that efficiently converts CO2 into a synthetic form of natural gas. Not only does this highly active catalyst have the potential to help us solve the problem of CO2 emissions on earth but it could also help in the Mars program. Mars’ atmosphere is 96% CO2, and with SpaceX’s Elon Musk recently announcing it will launch a crewed mission to Mars, they plan to produce methane (fuel) on Mars via the same reaction. https://blog.csiro.au/turning-co2-into-fuel/

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Short Story Vending Machine

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These inventive vending machines have been popping up around France. Instead of dispensing sweet treats or sugary drinks, however, these kiosks distribute short stories! Sleek in design and minimal in effort, each vending machine offers an appealing way for commuters and customers to kill time. To use the innovative inventions, simply choose your desired reading time: 1 minute, 3 minutes, or 5 minutes. Then, the machine will surprise you with a randomly-selected short story to occupy your time and make waiting around a bit more bearable—if at least for a couple of minutes. 🙂  http://short-edition.com/en/  

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Smart Contact Lenses for Diabetics

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Diabetes NSW and ACT are testing a a glucose-sensing contact lens – a non-invasive way to monitor glucose from tears. Glucose levels in tears are five to ten times less concentrated than those found in blood, requiring more sensitive detection. However, based on the prototype, the lenses are expected to generate a reading once per second and to not need calibration. http://diabetesnsw.com.au/smart-contact-lens-to-provide-glucose-readings/

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Umbrella Cup Holder

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For those of us multi-taskers…It’s essentially a cup holder that attaches to the handle of your umbrella. It’s got a gimbal mechanism to ensure that your cups always stay level and don’t spill. That way, you can carry your drink (and even an extra one!) while holding your umbrella with one hand and whatever else you need to carry in the other. 😀 https://technabob.com/blog/2014/03/24/morella-umbrella-cup-holder/

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Rent a designer dress online

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Glamcorner offers thousands of dresses from over 100 top international and local designers, ranging from size 6 to 22, delivered to your door. If the dress doesn’t fit or you’re just not happy with it you send the dress back with all tags fully intact, and they’ll either send out a different size for free or give you a full refund. They also offer an obligation-free try on option of up to 2 dresses for a small charge. www.glamcorner.com.au

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