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Here's The Drill Designed for Space Mining

Like many good ideas, Dave Boucher’s Moon mining drill started as a sketch on a napkin. That was in 1999 (just one year after the space drilling adventures of Armageddon). But sometime this fall, his company Deltion Innovation’s latest prototype of a real Moon drill will go through one of its final tests. And with any luck, DESTIN — which stands for Drilling Exploration & Sample Technology Integrated — will be chosen to spearhead NASA’s lunar prospecting mission in 2018 or 2019, bringing us one step closer to leaving Earth forever and moving to the Moon.

“Space mining has now become a must-do activity for every space agency in the world,” Boucher said in an interview earlier this year. “They all recognize that they have to be able to go mine in space just to support the missions that they're planning.”

In other words, space mining isn’t so much about monetizing the supposed wealth of precious resources contained on the Moon’s surface (though, yes, there is apparently a lot). Not yet, at least. For now, it’s all about figuring out how to make future missions, manned or otherwise, self-sustainable — what’s known as In-Situ Resource Utilization — should we have any hope for the long-term exploration and colonization of world’s beyond our own.

Of central interest for NASA’s prospecting mission are the pockets of water ice that satellite imagery believe exist in the Moon’s Polar Regions. “Water and oxygen extracted from lunar soil could be used for life support,” suggests a NASA document describing the eventual mission, “and methane produced from the Martian atmosphere could be used to refuel spacecraft for the trip back to Earth.”

But we don’t know it’s there for sure. And that’s where Boucher’s drill comes in.

Tested In-Depth: Nvidia Shield Tablet and Wireless Controller

Nvidia's first Shield device was a good showcase of the Tegra 4 processor, but was limited as a dedicated gaming device. We test the new Shield Tablet and wireless controller, and show off its gaming and productivity features. We also evaluate the stylus, Nvidia's new Grid Beta, and Shield's built-in Twitch streaming capabilities. This ends up being one of our favorite Android tablets, with few compromises for all of its features.

Airplanes Taking Off and Landing in Time-Lapse

Photographer Milton Tan was granted access to a restricted runway at the Singapore Changi Airport to shoot this time-lapse compilation of planes taking off and landing at one of the busiest airports in the world. Tan details the technical aspects of his shoot on his blog, explaining that he used long exposure shots with a Canon 5D III and 7D with a range of zoom lenses. 7000 photos were processed in Lightroom and edited in Premiere. This is how I imagine a Star Trek-style spaceport to look like in real-time, with planes warping off as beams of light. (h/t Petapixel)

In Brief: How Glass Lenses are Made

Adam shared this awesome photo gallery documenting every step an Optician takes to make corrective lenses to fit custom glasses. Every step is described in captions, showing the transformation from a hockey puck-sized lens to something that fits in the customer's glasses. My favorite tool used is the "edger" a machine that takes a scan of the glasses bezel shape and cuts the glass to fit into that specific frame. I love that the whole process takes less than an hour, and even as quickly as 35 minutes, according to the technician who posted the photos. (And here's an old How It's Made video showing the manufacturing process for lenses, from raw slabs of glass.)

Norman
The Best Exercise Headphones

This post was done in partnership with The Wirecutter. Read the original full article below at TheWirecutter.com

If I were looking for a pair of headphones to use in my workout, I’d want the Relays by Sol Republic. They are hands down the most comfortable headphones to wear while being active. They sound good, stay put without chafing or tugging, are light and resistant to sweat, and have a lifetime of free tips (because you know those lil’ buggers love to get lost in a gym bag).

I base this conclusion after extensively testing 38 models. Our tests involved a professional listening panel, three stress tests, and real workout tests. After all that, I’m confident the Sol Republic are the best fit for your fitness routine.

Who’s this for / should I upgrade?

Exercise headphones are for people who want to run, hike, bike, or hit the gym while listening to music, podcasts, or other media. That means they should be able to withstand a variety of stressors like sweat, rain, strain from dropping media players, and abuse from being thrown in a bag. The headphones should also sound decent, feel good, stay put, and stay out of the way when you’re being active.

How To Mold and Cast Resin Copies of 3D-Printed Figures

We do a lot of 3D printing at Tested, but it's a time-consuming process best used for prototyping, not mass production. To replicate our 3D prints, we invited Frank Ippolito up to Adam's shop to teach us how to make simple rubber molds and cast awesome resin copies. It's really not difficult to get started! (This video was brought to you by Premium memberships on Tested. Learn more about memberships here!)

Real-Time Face Tracking and Projection Mapping

This is one of the coolest things I've seen in a long time. PICS, a Japanese video production company, experimented with face tracking and projection mapping to animate and transform the face of a model in real-time. The model's face was marked with tracking dots and painted in reflective make-up, which allowed a computer system to match an 3D animation with her head movements. From afar, the positional matching and low latency of the projection create a mesmerizing and surreal illusion. It's the kind of effect that I would love to see used in movies, shot in-camera instead of done in post with CGI.

Adam Tour Diaries #7: A Whirlwind Weekend
I got this shot heading into our first TV station. (Or was it radio? It’s all a blur.)

We had a busy weekend prepping and performing our first three shows in Oz.

We are in the lovely and awesomely foodie town of Melbourne, where the crowds are incredible. I’ve been furiously adding and modifying and refining bits of the show (an endless process, I’m afraid), and if there’s one thing I’ve learned about myself, it’s that when I’m putting a ton of creative energy in one place, I don’t have much left for other places.

But it’s been awesome. Like I said, the Aussie crowds are excellent.

So what has gone on? Well, we arrived in Melbourne on Thursday night, and woke up bright and early Friday for a bunch of press. I love cities at dawn. When I first moved to Manhattan a lifetime ago, I became addicted to the city as the sun came up.