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The First Ever Optical Rectenna Turns Light Directly Into DC Current

This fancy-looking slab is the world’s first optical rectenna, a small device that’s part antenna, part rectifier diode — and it’s able to convert light directly into DC current.

Proof That Dusk And Dawn In Australia Are The Best Times Of The Day

People like dawn because it’s the start of the new day and the illusion of opportunity exists as light breaks the night. I like dawn because when I see the sun rise it meant I had a great night. But dusk is more my speed, the world comes alive in a completely different way. In any case, dusk and dawn are the best times of the day.

New Software Lets You See The World Through Animal Eyes

If you’ve ever wondered what it might be like to see the world as a lizard or a bumble bee or some other animal, you’re in luck: a new piece of open access software allows you to see how other creatures see the world.

Scientists Calculate From Just How Far You Can See A Candle Flame

Your eyes are good — but how good? There’s a long-standing argument about the distance from which humans can observe a burning candle, but now a pair of astronomers has calculated an answer based on the science of how we see the stars.

Scientists Finally Created A White Laser -- And It Could Light Your Home

Lasers have been advancing science and threatening move characters since the 1960s, but you may have noticed they always have a distinct colour. Now, a team of scientists has developed the world’s first white laser.

Beautiful Video Explains How Light Has Been Harnessed For Communication

Whether you have fibre supplying Internet access to your home or not, you use optical systems to send and receive information every single day. This stunning video takes a look at the scientists and engineers that have enabled light to be used for human communication.

Scientists Can Turn Human Cells Into Working Lasers

How about this for a bright idea: A team of researchers from Harvard Medical School has developed three different ways to turn individual cells into functioning lasers that emit light when they’re excited.

This Tiny Light-Emitting Device Flashes 90 Billion Times A Second

This may look like a piece of abstract art, but you’re actually looking at the cutting-edge of optical technology. Using a branch of physics known as plasmonics, this microscopic set-up can pulse light on-and-off a bewildering 90 billion times per second.

Your Yard Is A Firefly Meet Market, And You Can Help Scientists Study It

The twinkly flashing lights of fireflies are a classic sign of summer, but the insects aren’t blinking for your aesthetic benefit. They’re courting in an absolutely cutthroat meet market, and some scientists are afraid that human activities could be making it harder for them to succeed.

This Is How Valve's Amazing Lighthouse Tracking Technology Works

Valve’s virtual reality demo at GDC was nothing short of magical — it used fancy emitter technology to let us actually walk around a demo room. It felt so real. Valve calls the tech Lighthouse, and it’s kind of genius.

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