science
Drones Built Like Squishy Bugs Won’t Break When They Crash

Like death and taxes, drone crashes are basically inevitable. Even experienced pilots aren’t immune to hardware failures or software problems. But instead of building drones stronger, or wrapping them in awkward safety cages, Swiss researchers have designed a flexible quadcopter that squishes when it crashes, minimising the damage it takes. Read More >>

robots
Robotics Researchers Discovered a Better Way For Insects to Walk

A popular approach to designing robots that can navigate a world built for living creatures is to simply copy Mother Nature’s designs. But while trying to improve how a six-legged robot walks, researchers at the École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne actually found a faster way for six-legged creatures to get around. Read More >>

drones
Researchers Make an Obvious Discovery For Improving Drones

Even the most manoeuvrable aircraft we’ve designed is no match for the agility of a bird. Mother Nature has all but perfected flight, so why are we wasting our time re-inventing the wheel? As researchers at Switzerland’s École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne realised, we should just be copying our fine feathered friends. Read More >>

design
The Swiss Are Now Fighting Off Watch Counterfeiters With Holograms

As counterfeiters get better and better at faking expensive Swiss watches, the watchmakers themselves now have a new tool to help distinguish their genuine creations from fakes: nanoscopic watermarks that are invisible to the naked human eye, and impossible to fake. Read More >>

science
This Spinal Implant is Letting Paralysed Rats Walk Again

The ability to internally bridge the gap between two ends of severed spinal cord—not just rely on the support of an external carapace like the Ekso-Suitwould be nothing short of revolutionary for the neurosurgical field. Oh wait, looks like a team from the EPFL has just invented a way to do just that—in mice. Read More >>

transport
It Only Takes This Electric Bus 15 Seconds to Charge at Every Stop

Because battery technology still relatively sucks, electric vehicles like buses that have to run all day long usually stay tethered to a spiderweb of overhead cables. But as an alternative to that costly infrastructure, researchers at the EPFL have developed an electric bus that can recharge itself at every stop in as little as 15 seconds. Read More >>

robots
Shape-Shifting Robots Designed to Build Furniture When You Need It

Researchers at EPFL are working on a better approach. Instead of deciding on a specific piece of furniture, they're working on tiny modular robots that simply assemble into whatever furniture you happen to need at the moment, be it a table, a chair, a bench, or whatever. Read More >>

robots
A High-Speed Robot Arm That Snatches Objects Out of Mid-Air

Cricket probably hasn't even considered the idea of allowing teams to add artificial players to their rosters. But games would certainly be a lot more exciting if this EPFL arm—that can react in less than five hundredths of a second to catch an object—were to take the field. Read More >>

medicine
One Day Your Smartphone’s Screen Could be Used to Test Blood

Patients who rely on the use of coagulants to limit the formation of blood clots in their veins also require frequent and regular trips to the hospital for tests to monitor their blood flow. It's a time-consuming side effect that researchers at EPFL hope they've solved with a portable test that relies on a smartphone's display's unique properties. Read More >>

cars
In-Car Facial Recognition Detects Angry Drivers to Prevent Road Rage

Passengers in a car can help calm an angry driver when another vehicle cuts them off. But when a driver is alone, that anger can easily turn into road rage which puts everyone at risk. So researchers at École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne—or EPFL for short—are working on an in-car facial recognition system that knows when the driver isn't happy. Read More >>

software
How Your Video Game Character Could Soon Share Your Rage Face

You spent hours tweaking your Xbox or Nintendo avatar to look exactly like you, but researchers at the EPFL are taking things one step further with a Kinect-based system that can translate your facial expressions and emotions to your online persona. So the next time you're cursing into your headset after a loss in Halo, your character won't look so serene. Read More >>

science
This Adorable Rat on a Treadmill Used To Be Paralysed

Besides being utterly adorable and begging for a tiny training montage, this rat is actually demonstrating an impressive medical treatment. Because just a few weeks prior, it was actually paralysed with a spinal cord injury. Read More >>