• Harvard, MIT Will Bring Classes To The Masses With Their ‘edX’ Online Learning Initiative

    Harvard, MIT Will Bring Classes To The Masses With Their ‘edX’ Online Learning Initiative

    Distance learners rejoice! Harvard University and MIT jointly announced their new non-profit edX online learning initiative in Cambridge earlier today, which aims to both enhance on-campus teaching and make courses from both schools available to people around the world for free. “This is the single biggest change in education since the printing press,” said Anant Agarwal… Read More

  • Location, Location, Location: MIT Builds A Bracelet That Controls The Office Thermostat

    Location, Location, Location: MIT Builds A Bracelet That Controls The Office Thermostat

    The WristQue may look like one of those cloth bracelets worn by old soul Sophomores who spent a semester in Prague and came back with dredlocks and an absinthe fetish, but it’s not. It’s actually a personal climate control system. Let me explain. The bracelet identifies you to the building and allows it to follow you from room to room. Is the meeting room too cold? Press a button… Read More

  • Green Buildings Software Startup, Retroficiency, Closes $800,000 Seed Financing

    A Boston startup that makes energy auditing software for the commercial buildings industry, Retroficiency, raised $800,000 in a seed round led by energy management services firm World Energy Solutions (NASDAQ: XWES), and joined by a number of angel investors including Jean Hammond and Jill Preotle (both early investors in ZipCar) the companies announced today. Facility managers, auditors… Read More

  • My Ordeal—and the Firestorm—in Boston

    As TechCrunch readers know by now, I speak my mind and don’t shy away from controversy. I am even more provocative when I talk to students. My goal is to make them think outside the box. I encourage students not only to challenge authority, but also to challenge me. I tell them that with my research on globalization, entrepreneurship, and U.S. competitiveness, I am learning as I go; no… Read More

  • Live From The MIT Media Lab: A Camera Can Look Around Corners and Microdot QR Codes

    I’m hanging out at the MIT Media Lab today and watching some of the great presentations by some of the Lab’s current members and alumni. For example, Ramesh Raskar is currently showing off his system of Femtosecond Transient Imaging, essentially a type of camera that can take pictures around corners using high speed lasers. The project has been designed to “see”… Read More

  • MIT's Solar-Powered Robot Prototype Ready To Swarm Upon Oil Spills

    MIT researchers tested the first prototype of the Seaswarm, a pack of robots that use nanotechnology to suck up oil from the surface of the ocean and for immediate processing. When completed, the robots will be able to travel along oil-spilled waters, collecting oil more cheaply and efficiently than oil skimmers. The robots are large: 16 feet in length and seven feet in width. They push a… Read More

  • Prototype Electric Motor Works With Any Bicycle

    MIT students have developed the “Copenhagen Wheel”, a device intended to be attached to any standard bicycle to turn it into an electric. The Wheel contains a motor, batteries, and gear system all inside a single hub, and is intended to help cyclists with hilly terrain and over long distances. Interestingly, there are also sensors that will link with cycling-related mobile apps. Read More

  • Using photography software to see through space and time

    It’s interesting to see pictures of areas of your city or town from the past, and it can be even more interesting to try to reproduce those pictures. Typically, it’s very difficult to get everything to line up exactly right, but researchers at MIT are developing software to automate the process. Read More

  • Polaroid archive shows history of pictures

    Polaroid is one of those things that’s always been with us, and if some have their way, always will. I remember taking pictures at camp using the family OneStep, and I still have a shot of myself at my first job. Read More

  • Remember Those Red Darpa Balloons? We Helped Find Three Of Them

    Remember the DARPA red balloon challenge back in December? DARPA launched ten red balloons across the country and offered $40,000 to the first group of people who could identify the exact locations of all ten. All sorts of teams with different strategies participated, with the winning team coming from MIT. Well, it turns out that TechCrunch helped find three of those balloons, more than… Read More

  • MIT's teleconferencing robot can interact with, strangle you

    Have you ever wanted to reach out and strangle someone during a conference call? Well now you can. MIT’s crazy MeBot is a tiny robot that sits on your desk and moves around, allowing remote communication partners to roam around your office when you’re talking to them. Read More