Biofuel Made From Corn Waste Less ‘Green’ Than Gasoline

Biofuel created from corn waste may not be the clean, eco-friendly oil alternative the United States government is hoping for. A new study has found that fuel generated from harvested corn leftovers creates more greenhouse gases than conventional gasoline — at least in the short term.
The fuel under study, called cellulosic ethanol, has been touted in recent years as a promising successor to current corn-based ethanol. Unlike the ethanol now mixed into gasoline, cellulosic ethanol is made o

from Discover Magazine

Miniature Roomba-Like Printer Hits Funding Goal

Pocket Printer

The printer, if you even own one, is likely your most despised device. It’s loud; it jams; it requires a fountain of ink that is literally more expensive than imported Russian caviar. Any forward progress on that front is appreciated.

The latest is a tiny robot from a startup called ZUtA Labs, called the Pocket Printer: a fist-sized, Roomba-like robot that rolls across paper, trailing letters behind it like Hansel and Gretel dropping breadcrumbs. With 17 days to go, the project has reached its $400,000 funding goal, with pre-orders of the devices going for about $200 a pop. 



The printer’ still in the prototype phase; you can see it eke out a little printed Hello in the campaign video above. So, we have a while before we can see what it can really do. That said, the about section lists a 40-second print time for an "average" page, which doesn’t seem especially efficient. Maybe we’ll recoup that time from all the jams we won’t have to deal with?

from Popular Science

How To Turn A Clothespin Into A Matchstick Gun

DIY enthusiast Grant Thompson, who previously made a 10-penny battery that powered a small light for almost two weeks, is at it again. Inspired by another project tutorial, Thompson created seven variations of a mini-pistol that can fire matches over 20 feet.

You’ll need:

  • Clothespins
  • Wood glue
  • Utility knife
  • Matches

Take apart the clothespin by removing its metal spring, then hold the two wooden clips back-to-back. With the utility knife, carve out a barrel for the matchstick ammunition. Then glue together the two parts, back-to-back. After allowing time for the glue to dry, slide one end of the metal spring through the space between the clips, and place the other end over the outside notch. Now load a matchstick, and there you have it: a mini-sized pocket pistol that shoots matchsticks and toothpicks. 

Watch the video for the full how-to. 

Warning (via Grant Thompson): "Projectiles should never be shot at any living thing. Injury or damage may result. Lighting match heads and firing them indoors is strongly discouraged. Competent adult supervision is advised when using the device. There may be other risks associated with these projects that have not been disclosed, or of which I am not aware. Use of video content is at own risk."

from Popular Science