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New Xplore Camera Lets You Record Your Adventure Videos With Confidence

Adventure videographers know how disappointing and frustrating it is when their Point-of-View (POV)/action cameras fail to record their latest stunts or experiences.

The Xplore camera, designed with adventure video photography enthusiasts in mind, eliminates this all-too-common problem.

What makes the Xplore camera unique is the watch accessory, which is included with each camera. The watch has a 1 3/8-inch LED screen that displays in real time the video that is being recorded. It is also a remote, allowing users to start and stop recording and snap pictures with a click of a button. One watch can even control up to six cameras.

The 16-megapixel camera records video at 1080p at 60 fps, and the photo bursts feature takes 7 shots per second. If the 1 GB internal memory isn’t enough, there’s a port for a MicroSD card. The compact, lightweight and rugged camera is waterproof up to 60 meters.

“The Xplore camera has similar specs as other high-end HD POV cameras on the market but at a fraction of the cost,” said Ben Skidmore, Partner of Xplore Video. “And with the watch, there’s no more pressing record and hoping that the camera is recording; it gives you live visual confirmation.”

With Wi-Fi capability, users also can upload their videos and photos to social media sites with an Apple or Android app designed specifically for Xplore.

"The action-camera market is ripe for another POV camera; consumers prefer to have a choice. The Xplore camera is a serious contender, where quality meets affordability," said Greg Hetrick, Xplore Video Partner. "Beyond extreme sports, the camera is suitable for many other applications from film students to space."

The Xplore camera is currently only available through its Indiegogo campaign.

Xplore Video is offering perks at different contribution levels in the Indigogo campaign. Early adopters can even get the Xplore camera and watch at up to 40 percent off the retail price of $299. Quantities are limited at each tier, so the earlier you contribute, the more savings you’ll get. 


Messages to Mars Make History 

History was made on Black Friday, but not for sales, nor the number of people trampled.

On November 28, Uwingu, a group that seeks new ways for people to personally connect with space exploration and astronomy, sent messages and pictures from 90,000 people to Mars.

The event marked the 50th anniversary of NASA's Mariner 4, the first mission to Mars that made the first successful flyby of the red planet and photographed 22 images of the planet's surface.

The transmission was sent at a rate of 1 million bits per second by Universal Space Network, from antennas in Hawaii, Alaska and Australia. Traveiling at the speed of light, the messages arrived at their destination in 15 minutes.

Actors Seth Green, Clare Grant, George Takei and Ryan Merriman sent messages, as well as former ISS commander Chris Hadfield; Lori Garver, former NASA Deputy Administrator; and Bill Nye. 


Virtual Reality Therapy for Astronauts in Development 

Oculus RiftThe Virtual Space Station, a behavioral health training and treatment program developed by a colllaborative effort between Dartmouth, Harvard, UCLA and The Troupe Modern Media, will add new  and conflict management content "to help make people feel at ease, at home, happy, comfortable and calm," said Lorie Loeb, a Dartmouth research professor, in a press release.

Currently, the Virtual Space Station includes self-guided training on conflict and stress management. The program also offers a six-session, self-administered depression treatment program guided by psychologist Mark Hegel, Ph.D., a professor at Dartmouth's Geisel School of Medicine and a co-investigator on the project.

The upgraded system will integrate the Oculus Rift virtual reality headset and sounds and smells for mood modification. The idea is "to trick the brain and make people feel as if they are in a variety of beautiful and calm settings, such as with their family at home or strolling on the beach," Loeb said.

For example, an astronaut may be able to view photos and videos of his or her family, images of a beach, sounds of waves crashing, odors of saltwater and suntan lotion and a fan to simulate ocean breezes.

The system will be tested in Hawaii, at the HI-SEAS (Hawaii Space Exploration Analog and Simulation) Mission 3. A team of six members will spend eight months in simulated Mars habitat. A plan to test the system in Antarctica is also in development.


Gigapixel Camera Developed For Skin Cancer Screening 

This unique instrument simultaneously photographs a 2 meter tall individual to 75 micron resolution. Credit: Daniel Marks Researchers at Duke University have developed a 250-gigapixel camera that takes high-resolution photos of the human body to detect skin cancer.

The camera is actually 34 cameras in one and allows the researchers to image the skin down to a freckle.   

"The camera is designed to find lesions potentially indicating skin cancers on patients at an earlier stage than current skin examination techniques," said Daniel Marks, Associate Research Professor in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at Duke. "Normally a dermatologist examines either a small region of the skin at high resolution or a large region at low resolution, but a gigapixel image doesn't require a compromise between the two."

A 250 megapixel snapshot of a volunteer with two areas shown in detail. Credit: Duke University

The resolution of high-quality dermatoscopes is still better, but this camera allows for a larger imaging area than a dermatoscope and it could be used for telemedicine.

The camera will have to prove itself in clinical trials before it is available for common medical use.


Virtual Romance Apps at Tokyo Game Show

Credit: AFPVisitors to the Tokyo Game Show will find the newest romance simulation apps, where perfect digital men exist.

For example, Voltage Romance Apps' free "Room Share Love Days" game lets players flirt with handsome roommates. These men offer flowers, make heart-shaped chocolates, and kiss and cuddle on command. For now, the game is in Japanese but the English version will be available soon. 

There's also a spy-themed game that is designed for "North American weomen's tastes."

Another game developer, Ambition, ups the weird ante but offering "animal boyfriends," boyfriends that are half animal and half man. They can be commanded to study or work, and the players can buy clothes and accessories for them.  

"The cat boyfriend, which has cat's ears and a human body, is most popular, as its the most sophisticated," a spokesperson for Ambition to AFP.

Another developer, Sunsoft, has games that feature homosexual romances between young, good-looking men.