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Event: Engineering for Girls. San Diego, August 7, 2010

usdiego

Middle school girls are invited to experience the creativity and innovation of engineering and technology with fun hands-on activities at the University of San Diego, CA, on August 7, 2010. Come meet women engineers, scientist, and technologist and hear first-hand about their exciting careers. Cost: Free. Registration deadline: August 2, 2010.

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New Discoveries Reveal Other Earth-Like Planets

Some important discoveries were made in outer space recently, including the biggest and brightest star ever seen as well as over a hundred planets that are similar to our own.

Are we closer to encountering life on another planet?

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Giant Mechanical Elephant Stomps Through France

If you’re planning to visit the western coast of France anytime soon, be sure to keep an eye out for a 40-foot-tall mechanical elephant. Perhaps taking inspiration from steampunk fiction and Jules Verne, French engineers, artists, and craftspeople have cobbled together a movable mammoth using 45 tons worth of reclaimed wood and steel.

The Great Elephant is part of the Machines of the Isle of Nantes project, and exhibit of fantastical creations, which aims to inspire the imaginations of citizens and tourists alike. And it’s not just for decoration, either: this robust creature can carry up to 49 passengers on a 45-minute walk around the city of Nantes.

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The Power of Flushing

Bathrooms may dispose of waste, but they create it, too: The average person flushes the toilet five times a day, using between 8 and 35 gallons of water.  Not only that, but Americans each use about 50 pounds of toilet paper every year.

Now, thanks to Tom Broadbent, an industrial design graduate from De Montfort University in Leicester, UK, bathrooms may start impacting the environment in more positive ways by becoming power generators.

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New Physics Simulator Makes Dirt Beautiful

Last year software engineers developed new ways for animators to mimic the movement of swaying trees, and this year another programmer has created a brilliant new physics engine.

The software, called Lagoa Multiphysics 1.0, was created by Thiago Costa, a programmer and technical director for Ubisoft games. Watch as it realistically simulates falling dirt, crumpling silks, and other animated marvels in the eye-popping demo above.

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