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Walking Bicycle Club – Japan Setting New Biking Trends

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~~~~WonderfulEngineering1
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There isn’t much one can do with the classic bike’s design, right? Wrong! Japan, has yet again surprised us all with this new design of the classic bike that will allow you to walk while you conveniently commute. The stepping bikes or officially known as the Walking Bicycle Club (WBC) relies on the up and down movement of the legs instead of the rotational movement to ride the bike.

WBC comes with three wheels and is also equipped with an electric motor that is responsible for helping the cyclist while going up a hill. The bike weighs about 36 pounds and is about 3.3 feet in length. The group that came up with the design is known as Katayama Kogyo says it wanted to create a new experience that would be the combination of walking at the speed of cycling.

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The Jack Ma Way

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~~~~TheNewYorkTimesOnly1
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At the resplendent China World Hotel in Beijing, scores of cameras snapped as colorful confetti floated down from the ceiling. It was Aug. 11, 2005, and this was the global coming-out party for Alibaba, the Chinese e-commerce upstart. After months of frantic negotiations, the American Internet giant Yahoo had agreed to invest $1 billion in cash and create deeper business ties, in exchange for a 40 percent stake in Alibaba.

Alibaba’s founder, Jack Ma, thin, energetic and standing just over five feet tall, was beaming. He gushed that it was China’s Valentine’s Day and this was a beautiful match: “You’d be foolish if you said no.” It was his coming-out party too; the partnership would pave the way for Alibaba to become an international juggernaut.

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!!!!!Alibaba1Greg Newbold
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Japanese scientist gets leg-up on wheelchair mobility

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Reuters2
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Wheelchair users may soon have greater freedom of movement than ever before with the development of a new chair equipped not just with wheels but legs as well. Invented by scientists at Japan’s Chiba Institute of Technology, the chair is being prepared for commercial sale by the end of next year. Rob Muir reports.
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Flying Cars? Not Yet — But Electric-Powered Skates Have Finally Arrived

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~~~~Mashable1
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In the space between somewhat practical vehicles like the Segway and completely fad-driven curios like the Tamagotchi, there exists a middle ground of outlandish gadget that almost seems to make sense, but is weird enough that you might be too embarrassed to use it in public.

It’s still early days, but that appears to be the case with Acton’s RocketSkates, which look like a joint creation by the art departments of Judge Dredd and Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory. Offering to motorize your feet, they are a recent Kickstarter success story. And depending on your temperament, the RocketSkates either look like a glimpse at the future, or an expensive prank.

Do they work as described? A demonstration video indicates that, yes, you can use the RocketSkates to traverse the city at fairly rapid speeds. But there are limitations.

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Attachable technology transforms wheelchairs, helping users stay healthy

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~~~~Reuters1
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A San Francisco-based technology company is rethinking the way wheelchair users get around. Engineers at Rio Mobility have developed a line of hand cycles and attachable scooter devices aimed at keeping the wheelchair-bound more active and healthy. Ben Gruber reports.

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Sperm extractor helps patients overcome embarrassment

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~~~~Reuters1
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A Chinese company says its automatic sperm extractor is helping clinics collect semen from donors reluctant to masturbate in a hospital setting. The Jiangsu Sanwe Medical Science and Technology Center says their device, which has been sold to clinics in the US, Germany, Russia and France, simulates the temperature and feel of the female sexual organ, and is the most user friendly way of collecting samples for sperm donation or for those needing fertility advice.
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E-coyotes: The Central American people smugglers who ‘Like’ Facebook

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~~~~Reuters1
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When Alan Villeda began smuggling people from Honduras to the United States in 1998, he could only communicate with customers via patchy phone calls. These days, he is a word-of-mouth success and new clients seek him out on Facebook.

Social media like Facebook and Skype are changing, and in some cases accelerating, the decades-old northward migration of Central Americans, U.S. and Honduran officials said, by providing crowd-sourced information on the risks and rewards of making the journey.

Images and testimonials posted by migrants who have made it to the United States help keep uprooted families closer together and drive business for e-commerce “coyotes” like Villeda, who is based in the city of La Ceiba on Honduras’ Caribbean coast.

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!!!!!E-Coyotes1Border police officers stand on the 103-km (64-mile) long Highway CA13, which starts in Puerto Cortes on the Honduran coast and ends at Puerto Barrios in Guatemala, at a checkpoint near the border between the two countries, August 2, 2014.  Credit: Reuters/Jorge Cabrera
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