Science Fiction Future is Now

Science Fiction Tilt Brush By Google

The world is about to dramatically change, disrupting massive sets of industries, because science fiction is about to become real. Are you ready?

The Motorola flip phone and the Apple iPad are basically devices dreamt of and put on screen in Star Trek.

I’ve been talking about three dimensional (3D) printers for a couple of years and how they are going to dramatically alter manufacturing, shipping, and pollution as you won’t need to buy an item manufactured inexpensively in China, shipped across the Pacific Ocean in giant polluting freighters, transported to a brick and mortar facility or retailer, and then your house. Soon, you’ll see a new toy for your child, or doorknob for your front door, pay for the plan, and then print it at home. This will change our economy in massive ways.

Virtual Reality (VR) has been discussed for a very long time. It has always been clunky, causing some people dizziness and sickness, and for others a difficulty balancing after taking off the headsets. Further, little of what I’ve seen from VR has been beyond games, pornography, and travel immersion, all of which might have entertainment or minimal educational value.

Now, Google has released Tilt Brush. This appears to be an amazingly disruptive, creative technology. In the video below, you can see people painting and creating in a virtual 3D space with materials that simply are not available in our real world. Stunning!

Here is where I think it goes, though. This tool becomes the basis for adding tremendous value or even revolutionizing civil engineering, architecture, and other industries that now rely on Computer Aided Design (CAD) technology. A designer could build a building in that Tilt Brush space, and if properly programmed, can test their ideas out for seismic, strength, and other engineering issues before even presenting the concept to another person.

Finally, I can see how the home 3D printer gets a new source of ideas for printing. Any idea I might have for a residential or commercial purpose I could create out of materials available for the printer, design the idea in the Tilt Brush VR space, and then print the final item out on my 3D printer.

Science fiction is about to become real.

Another Chinese Manufacturing Recall

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Gree Recalls 12 Brands of Dehumidifiers Due to Serious Fire and Burn Hazards; More Than $2 Million in Property Damage Reported

As if melamine contamination, toy lead poisoning, and solar panel failures weren’t enough. I received an email today regarding a dehumidifier I purchased(here on California’s central coast the humidity causes mold issues).

I immediately called the number to begin the refund process as should you if you have one of the models listed. The ominous message read:

We are writing to let you know that Gree is voluntarily recalling 12 brands of Dehumidifiers due to serious fire and burn hazards.  The dehumidifiers can overheat, smoke and catch fire, posing fire and burn hazards to consumers.

This recall involves 20, 25, 30, 40, 45, 50, 65 and 70-pint dehumidifiers with brand names Danby, De’Longhi, Fedders, Fellini, Frigidaire, Gree, Kenmore, Norpole, Premiere, Seabreeze, SoleusAir and SuperClima.  The brand name and the pint capacity are printed on the front of the dehumidifier. The model number and date code are printed on a sticker on the back, front or side of the unit. The dehumidifiers are white, beige, gray or black plastic and measure between 19 and 24 inches tall, 13 and 15 inches wide, and 9 and 11 inches deep.

If you believe you are affected by this recall, you should immediately discontinue use of this product. Consumers should direct questions and concerns to Gree toll-free at (866) 853-2802 from 8am to 8pm ET Monday through Friday, and on Saturday from 9am to 3pm ET or online atwww.greeusa.com and click on Recall for more information.

Photos available at http://www.cpsc.gov/en/Recalls/2013/Gree-Recalls-12-Brands-of-Dehumidifiers/