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Festo's Drone Dragonfly Takes To the Air 45

yyzmcleod writes "Building on the work of last year's bionic creation, the Smart Bird, Festo announced that it will literally launch its latest creation, the BionicOpter, at Hannover Messe in April. With a wingspan of 63 cm and weighing in at 175 grams, the robotic dragonfly mimics all forms of flight as its natural counterpart, including hover, glide and maneuvering in all directions. This is made possible, the company says, by the BionicOpter's ability to move each of its four wings independently, as well as control their amplitude, frequency and angle of attack. Including its actuated head and body, the robot exhibits 13 degrees of freedom, which allows it to rapidly accelerate, decelerate, turn and fly backwards."

Emscripten and New Javascript Engine Bring Unreal Engine To Firefox 124

MojoKid writes "There's no doubt that gaming on the Web has improved dramatically in recent years, but Mozilla believes it has developed new technology that will deliver a big leap in what browser-based gaming can become. The company developed a highly-optimized version of Javascript that's designed to 'supercharge' a game's code to deliver near-native performance. And now that innovation has enabled Mozilla to bring Epic's Unreal Engine 3 to the browser. As a sort of proof of concept, Mozilla debuted this BananaBread game demo that was built using WebGL, Emscripten, and the new JavaScript version called 'asm.js.' Mozilla says that it's working with the likes of EA, Disney, and ZeptoLab to optimize games for the mobile Web, as well." Emscripten was previously used to port Doom to the browser.

Comment Re:Your Honor! (Score 1) 494

I firmly believe that every male should have the crap kicked out of him at some point... we (males) tend to grow up thinking that we are made of plastic and, as you so correctly pointed out, that we are impervious to damage, just like the guys we love to watch on TV.
My "epiphany" occurred in the 4th grade, when I, the bully, larger than everyone else in my class, got his butt kicked by a classmate's big sister, publicly, in the school playground.
That took the wind out of my little bully sails. After that, I saw things much differently.

Comment Re:Linux on Netbooks (Score 1) 497

I did... bought the XP version and installed BackTrack3.

I am a professional SW Engineer, and most of my career has been spent using C, C++, and C# on Windows boxen. All of my home machines were Windows, too, until last January. I found myself with two dead HDs in both of my computers at home -- I lost everything (I know, I know... backup everything... I do now). Anyhow, on New Year's Day, I had nothing, so I went to Best Buy to get an HD for my laptop. My Windows disks (legal copies that I bought) were in storage, and I couldn't get to them right away, so I looked at their prices for Windows... XP was several hundred dollars!

I refused to spend so much for something that I had already paid for, but I desperately needed a machine. Then I saw the bookstore across the street. I went in, found a $20 Ubuntu book (with CD!), and viola! That night, I was up and online with Ubuntu FF. I had a little trouble with the WIFI driver (Broadcom), but I managed to get it going.

After that, I started looking at Linux in a different way. Then I discovered BT3, which I put on my EEE. It took me a few tries, but I got it going, and now I love it. Then I built a new machine to use as a dedicated file server (64-bit Ubuntu HH server, 1.9TB RAID5, with tape backup of critical directories)

I think I will always keep at least one Windows box around (I work at home, and I have learned to appreciate Visual Studio for certain things), but I have discovered a whole, new world. I even got my wife (an almost complete technophobe) to use Linux! To someone with her lack of tech-ability, Windows and Linux (Ubuntu via a GUI) are identical!

So, IMHO, if you are limiting yourself to Windows, as I did, you are missing out on a fun, new experience. OTOH, Linux was just not up to the task until quite recently. I think the main reason for this is that some Linux folks decided to stop hating Windows and make it easier for Windows users to try Linux. It's working, as far as I can tell.

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