People flex and bend. Too bad their gadgets can’t. Now an experimental battery described in the Nov. 26 edition of Nature Communications promises to do just that. Shown here powering a tiny light, the soft battery maintained a constant power output even when stretched to nearly two times its original length. In laboratory tests it also provided consistent power when squeezed, folded, and stretched multiple times. A team led by graduate student David Mackanic, in the lab of Stanford chemical engineer Zhenan Bao, is currently refining its design to generate more power and to prove that the technology can work outside the lab. BAO LAB, STANFORD ENGINEERING
Electronics are showing up everywhere: on our laps, in pockets and purses and, increasingly, snuggled up against our skin or sewed into our clothing.
But the adoption of wearable electronics has so far been limited by their need to derive power from bulky, rigid batteries that reduce comfort and may present safety hazards due to chemical leakage or combustion.
Now Stanford University researchers have developed a soft and stretchable battery that relies on a special type of plastic to store power more safely than the flammable formulations used in conventional batteries today.
Related Article: Engineers Use Heat-Free Tech for Flexible Electronics; Print Metal on Flowers, Gelatin
“Until now we haven’t had a power source that could stretch and bend the way our bodies do, so that we can design electronics that people can comfortably wear,” said chemical engineer Zhenan Bao, who teamed up with materials scientist Yi Cui to develop the device they describe in the Nov. 26 edition of Nature Communications.
The use of plastics, or polymers, in batteries is not new. For some time, lithium ion batteries have used polymers as electrolytes—the energy source that transports negative ions to the battery’s positive pole. Until now, however, those polymer electrolytes have been flowable gels that could, in some cases, leak or burst into flame.
To avoid such risks, the Stanford researchers developed a polymer that is solid and stretchable rather than gooey and potentially leaky, and yet still carries an electric charge between the battery’s poles. In lab tests the experimental battery maintained a constant power output even when squeezed, folded, and stretched to nearly twice its original length.
The prototype is thumbnail-sized and stores roughly half as much energy, ounce for ounce, as a comparably sized conventional battery. Graduate student David Mackanic said the team is working to increase the stretchable battery’s energy density, build larger versions of the device and run future experiments to demonstrate its performance outside the lab. One potential application for such a device would be to power stretchable sensors designed to stick to the skin to monitor heart rate and other vital signs as part of the BodyNet wearable technology being developed in Bao’s lab.
Like this article? Click here to subscribe to free newsletters from Lab Manager
LastPass Suffers Second Major Data Breach in Four Months | – Spiceworks News and Insights
On Wednesday, LastPass confirmed it was breached, a fallout of the August 2022 incident wherein portions of source code and some proprietary LastPass technical information were compromised. The recent breach came to light after the company noticed unusual activity in a third-party cloud storage service it shares with GoTo, its parent company.
In a blog post, LastPass CEO Karim Toubba said the still unknown threat actors accessed “certain elements” of the password manager’s customer information. Toubba didn’t talk about the type of information that was compromised but assured that the passwords of more than 33 million company users and more than 100,000 business accounts remain unaffected.
The August 2022 breach, wherein the hackers had access to LastPass accounts for four days, compromised the source code and some proprietary technical information. What the threat actors obtained in the previously compromised data to breach LastPass again is unknown.
“Since the company claims that the current hack is based on data compromised in the previous hack, this raises the question: Why did they not learn from the earlier hack and correct the root cause?” Mike Walters, VP of vulnerability and threat research at Action1, told Spiceworks. “The trend of repeated hacks, where the company fails to eliminate the consequences of the breach for months, is frustrating.”
In both LastPass breaches this year, the threat actors failed to access customer passwords thanks to the Zero Knowledge security model it has implemented that no one except the customer has access to the password or any other data stored in the company’s digital vault.
The password manager solutions vendor is working with Mandiant to ascertain the precise reason behind the hack. “We are working diligently to understand the scope of the incident and identify what specific information has been accessed,” Toubba said. LastPass’s previous August 2022 breach came through a compromised developer account that had access to the company’s developer environment.
Walters added, “To avoid this mistake, you should take decisive steps to investigate the security incident, as well as to find and fix any and all security vulnerabilities. Namely, carefully examine the investigation report and conduct an in-depth analysis of all architectural issues. Implement robust network segmentation and complete visibility into network traffic and user behavior. Ensure you receive alerts about any abnormal events.”
“Also, validate that your IDS/IPS, Endpoint Protection, EDR, NGFW, Sandbox, Honeypot, and RMM systems are in place and fine-tuned according to your business needs. Finally, you need to have a SOC center for incident response.”
Image source: Shutterstock
MORE ON DATA BREACHES
‘The Callisto Protocol’ Reviews Are In, And They Are Concerning – Forbes
We have reached the last few high profile releases of the year, and The Callisto Protocol was a game that many were looking forward to, a survival horror outing that seemed like it would be a spiritual successor to Dead Space.
But now that reviews are coming in, it seems to be falling short of that series, and while reviews are…okay, a few major critics and outlets have given it unusually low scores. The Callisto Protocol is currently sitting at a 76 Metascore, a ways off from the 86 of Dead Space, the 90 of Dead Space 2, and closer to the 78 of Dead Space 3, which was viewed as a series low point, before Visceral was eventually dismantled.
My friend Skillup, whose tastes I trust pretty explicitly at this point, positively roasted the game in his review:
Elsewhere, we’re seeing a number of high profile outlets in gaming give The Callisto Protocol some of its lowest scores:
IGN – 7/10 – “The Callisto Protocol is a satisfyingly gory spiritual successor to the Dead Space series, but it’s ultimately more of a striking modern mimic than a scary new mutation.”
Game Informer – 6/10 – “These various problems aside, though, The Callisto Protocol is still doing a lot of what Dead Space did, for better and worse. And to that end, there are moments of fun, even if, in contrast, they’re light on genuine terror. I’m okay with The Callisto Protocol being another version of its spiritual predecessor, but it struggles to nail even the basics. As a result, I’m underwhelmed, annoyed, and disappointed. If you wanted anything more out of this second crack at making a new sci-fi IP in survival horror, or something markedly different that acknowledges just how far gaming has come since 2008, The Callisto Protocol is not your answer.”
VGC – 6/10 – “The Callisto Protocol delivers the violence, intensity and horror that lives up to its Dead Space predecessor, but with deeper strategic combat. However, a cliché story and lack of original ideas means that it has one tentacle stuck in the past.”
That isn’t to say there isn’t any praise. Here’s a somewhat shocking perfect 10/10 score from Dextero:
“A wonderfully exhausting exercise in futility is probably the best way of describing The Callisto Protocol as no matter the strength of my own resolve, I was constantly on edge and reveling in those fleeting moments where the game allowed me to breathe following yet another life-threatening fight. The constant fear and dread incited by the phenomenal visual and sound design are only complemented by the compelling story. The Callisto Protocol is, hopefully, the start of an exciting new franchise, and is another sign that survival horror is anything but dead.”
The Callisto Protocol is being released about two months ahead of the Dead Space remake from EA, but so far, it does seem like you may be better sticking off with the original than the “spiritual successor” here. It may find its fans, but this is not shaping up to be a last minute industry megahit, if most of these reviews are to be believed. We’ll see what fans make of it as it heads to the wild.
Pokémon Scarlet And Violet Patch Divides Players Over Whether Anything's Fixed – Kotaku
Others are reporting greater render distances, improved shadows, fading light changes, and fade-in rather than pop-in for NPCs.
However, Nintendúo World’s side-by-side framerate test seems to show each version out-performing the other in different places. Although I’d argue there’s definitely some improvement when entering towns in 1.1.0:
One more for luck? This side-by-side comparison by Reyvanlatino (which unfortunately plays the music from both simultaneously, but just out of time) makes them look absolutely identical to me:
So yeah, it’s pretty difficult to know exactly what’s happening here, and why different people are recording such different experiences.
In my own very unscientific comparison, I played the same area on my son’s original Switch with the 1.1.0 patch and on my OLED without the patch, and to my eyes the patched version seemed noticeably smoother. But, my eyes are notorious idiots, and either way, it was far from a revelatory experience.
It’s so hard to know what’s your imagination versus what’s a genuine improvement, but Pokémon still popped in, and it was still freezing up for half a second at random points. (Still, at least I caught a bunch of the Violet paradox monsters to trade to myself later.) If things are improved, they’re absolutely definitely not improved enough.
We asked Nintendo yesterday if they could be more specific about what had been patched, and didn’t even receive a response. So we’ve asked again today, not least because it seems like they could have something to boast about here. We’ll obviously update should they find time to reply. Although perhaps they’re relying on people’s hopeful imaginations to fill in where they did not?
Meanwhile, come on Digital Foundry, pull your fingers out and give us the definitive answers.
LastPass Suffers Second Major Data Breach in Four Months | – Spiceworks News and Insights
FTX founder speaks for 1st time since crypto company's collapse – CBC.ca
Thatcher Demko injury Vancouver Canucks – TSN
Silver investment demand jumped 12% in 2019
Iran anticipates renewed protests amid social media shutdown
Search for life on Mars accelerates as new bodies of water found below planet’s surface
Business16 hours ago
How to Prevent iGaming Fraud
News16 hours ago
Canada-Morocco: Montreal’s Moroccans cheer as Canada falls in final match
Tech16 hours ago
The Arts Add STEAM to STEM at Monsignor Doyle CSS
News17 hours ago
Pandemic, slower U.S. migration see Canada closing gap with U.S. in workforce race
Tech17 hours ago
Pokémon Scarlet & Violet Version 1.1.0 Now Available, Nintendo Apologises For Performance Issues & Bugs
Media17 hours ago
Layoffs and Hiring Freezes: Media Industry Ends 2022 With Bad News for Journalists
Media16 hours ago
Retail Media Networks Are The Next Big Advertising Channel
Business16 hours ago
Tesla Semi, electric 18-wheeler, revealed in Nevada