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First Annual USA Science and Engineering Festival in Washington, DC

Wouldn’t it be great if the whole country got together to celebrate the achievements of scientists and engineers? Fortunately, such a celebration will be happening this October on the National Mall in Washington, D.C.

The first annual USA Science and Engineering Festival will take place from Oct. 10-12 2010, and will include over 500 exhibitors and many fun hands-on activities. The event is designed for students, teachers, families, and anyone else who loves engineering and science.

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Introducing Milo, the Virtual Boy

Meet Milo: the boy who can recognize your face, voice, and emotion; comment on the color of your shirt; or respond to your physical movements.

If you hand him a drawing, Milo will reach out, grab it, and comment on the drawing’s shape and color.

None of that may seem particularly unusual – except that Milo is a virtual creation, a milestone in gaming created by U.K. game designer Peter Molyneux.

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New Smart Metal Could Make Your Air Conditioner 175% More Efficient

Staying cool can be a challenge in the summer months, especially when global temperatures seem to be hitting an all-time high. Fortunately for your electric bill, a new metal alloy could someday increase the efficiency of your air conditioner by as much as 175%.

The “smart” metal, which would replace liquid coolants in refrigerators and air conditioners, is currently being tested by materials engineers at the University of Maryland.

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Ending a Parking Nightmare

A new system that detects available parking spots and indicates them for drivers could reduce traffic congestion, carbon emissions – and, with any hope, road rage.

Researchers from Spain’s Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona School of Engineering developed the system, called XALOC – Xarxes de sensors per a la gestió d’Aparcaments públics i LOCalització.

Translation? “Sensor networks for the management of public parking and location.”

Each parking spot in the system has a wireless sensor embedded in the middle of the space, which can tell whether or not the space is occupied.

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The Invisible Mouse

Wouldn’t it be great if the pesky mice in your home would just disappear?

Well, if you’re talking about the mouse for your computer, then you’re in luck!

Researchers are about to unleash Mouseless, an invisible computer mouse that allows users to interact with a computer as usual – just without a physical mouse.

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