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- The Pix backpack features a built-in screen that displays customizable messages and animations.
- Pix is currently available for pre-order on Kickstarter for $199 and is expected to deliver in January 2019.
- Pix raises questions about the future of wearable technology, especially in terms of advertising potential.
<p><span></span>A California-based company called PIX will soon release a backpack that can display animations and play games, offering a glimpse into the potential future of wearable technology.</p><p> PIX, which started a <a href="https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/pixbackpack/pix-the-first-smart-animative-backpack" target="_blank">Kickstarter campaign</a> that's already quadrupled its goal of $35,000, calls its quirky product an 'animative' urban backpack that's able to display animations and images that can help wearers hail taxis, hitchhike, display the time and weather, and signal traffic hazards. It's currently on early bird sale for $199, and will retail for $260.</p><p> <iframe allow="autoplay; encrypted-media" allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="383" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/L1wccOuagWk" width="681"></iframe> </p><p>Cyclists would perhaps benefit most from Pix, which offers a special package ($299) with a remote that lets cyclists signal turns and stops to cars behind them.<br></p><p><img src="https://assets.rbl.ms/18691633/980x.png"></p><p><em>Image: Pix</em></p><p>Powered by a rechargeable battery pack (sold separately) and a Bluetooth connection, users can create their own animations or choose from a variety of premade animations from the Pix smartphone app. Users can also use the app to play old-school 8-bit games, like Tetris and Snake, on the backpack's 16-by-20-pixel screen.<br></p><p><img src="https://assets.rbl.ms/18691617/980x.gif"></p><p><em>Image: Pix</em></p><p>The creators of Pix say it's a product designed to highlight creativity and individuality. </p><p>"Everyone uses a backpack, and everyone has their own unique style," Sergii Iezdin, co-founder of Pix, told <em><a href="https://markets.businessinsider.com/news/stocks/pix-inc-launches-the-first-smart-animative-backpack-1027477656" target="_blank">Business Insider</a>.</em> "With society's focus on self-expression, technology and high-performance, we jumped on the idea of combining these factors. We're excited to help people unleash their creativity in the backpack industry because nothing else is as customizable as Pix."</p><p><img src="https://assets.rbl.ms/18691667/980x.png"></p><p><em>Image: Pix</em><br></p><p>Pix seems like a relatively simple piece of technology, but its ability to broadcast custom messages in public places raises questions about the future of wearable technology. For instance, it's not hard to imagine a future in which advertisers are willing to pay people to wear backpacks displaying commercials for their products, even ones specifically tailored to whoever happens to be walking behind someone wearing a Pix or something like it. Hopefully that's far, far away.</p>
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Carl Sagan was one of the people who helped shape this recording that might just end up in the hands of some other beings, somewhere out there.
23 September, 2016
The location of the record on the spacecraft. Image: public domain.
<p><em>The Voyager record, <a href="https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:The_Sounds_of_Earth_-_GPN-2000-001976.jpg" target="_blank">image</a> public domain</em></p> <h2>Voyager 1 and 2 were launched in 1977, with the idea that, after a little exploration of our own solar system, they'd keep going and going into the "billions and billions" of stars. Wherein maybe, just maybe, they'd find an alien civilization to bump into.</h2> <p>Anticipating that, both Voyagers carried with them, housed in a sturdy aluminum jacket, a copper record plated with gold, and it had multiple hours of human sounds — music, words, and even analog images. (Since this was 1977, the images are encoded on the record, and have to be decoded. DVDs and MP3s didn't exist then, you see. Does that make you feel old? It does me.)</p> <p><img type="lazy-image" data-runner-src="https://assets.rebelmouse.io/eyJhbGciOiJIUzI1NiIsInR5cCI6IkpXVCJ9.eyJpbWFnZSI6Imh0dHBzOi8vYXNzZXRzLnJibC5tcy8xODQwODI2OS9vcmlnaW4uZ2lmIiwiZXhwaXJlc19hdCI6MTYzNTY4OTg0Nn0.V0JrOQDIrVQ5NTbRQ7GqIoyjn3sp2yCFHcrF7U0KwtE/img.gif?width=980" id="06fc1" class="rm-shortcode" data-rm-shortcode-id="bda6060ecf8ab03b654cbcb93d60415a" data-rm-shortcode-name="rebelmouse-image"></p> <p><em>Voyager recording cover — <a href="https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:The_Sounds_of_Earth_Record_Cover_-_GPN-2000-001978.jpg" target="_blank">image</a> public domain. For an explanation of what all of that means, <a href="https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Voyager_Golden_Record_Cover_Explanation.svg" target="_blank">here's a guide</a>. </em></p> <p>The primary missions of both Voyager spacecraft were to explore Jupiter and Saturn (Voyager 1) and Uranus and Neptune (Voyager 2), but the folks behind the mission knew that after completing those primary missions in 1989 — 12 years after their launch — they would be sent on the Voyager Interstellar Mission to explore space beyond our solar system. Carl Sagan was head of the NASA committee that decided what that whole golden record thing would look and sound like.</p> <h2>There were <a href="http://www.nytimes.com/2016/09/22/science/nasa-voyager-golden-record-carl-sagan-kickstarter.html" target="_blank">12 copies of it made</a>, all but 2 of which went to NASA entities, and one to then-President Carter. (No, Carl Sagan never received one.)</h2> <h2>The other 2, of course, are onboard the crafts designed to carry them far beyond our solar system.</h2> <p>And so they have: Both Voyager 1 and Voyager 2 have made it to interstellar space. They're now about 20 billion kilometers away from Earth (V1) and 16 billion (V2). </p> <p><img type="lazy-image" data-runner-src="https://assets.rebelmouse.io/eyJhbGciOiJIUzI1NiIsInR5cCI6IkpXVCJ9.eyJpbWFnZSI6Imh0dHBzOi8vYXNzZXRzLnJibC5tcy8xODQwODI3MC9vcmlnaW4uanBnIiwiZXhwaXJlc19hdCI6MTY1NDU2MTQ3MX0.hzDgxhK2xV3-cCHzu8XHIGb5ZvySXlrX3WmrD8zMASo/img.jpg?width=980" id="10ba8" class="rm-shortcode" data-rm-shortcode-id="d0d2d551c326a53227df9e58ceb2061b" data-rm-shortcode-name="rebelmouse-image"></p> <p><em>The location of the record on the spacecraft. <a href="https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Voyager.jpg" target="_blank">Image</a> public domain.</em></p> <h3>So ... <a href="https://www.amazon.com/gp/search/ref=as_li_qf_sp_sr_tl?ie=UTF8&tag=httptwitc0ac8-20&keywords=murmurs%20of%20earth&index=aps&camp=1789&creative=9325&linkCode=ur2&linkId=6a8e3ee987f02ee2f37291" target="_blank">what's on that record</a>?</h3> <p>Music — everything from Beethoven to Chuck Berry to a Peruvian wedding song, 118 images, and greetings in almost 60 human languages — and 1 whale language. Plus animal sounds, thunder, morse code, <a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Voyager_Golden_Record" target="_blank">and more</a>.</p> <p>It was available for a short time as a CD-ROM in 1992, you can find various snippets of the record online, and some of the sounds were <a href="https://soundcloud.com/search?q=nasa%20golden%20record" target="_blank">released by NASA to Soundcloud</a>, but this is the first time it can be available for us all back on Earth who haven't heard it, because <a href="https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/ozmarecords/voyager-golden-record-40th-anniversary-edition" target="_blank">there's a Kickstarter</a> by Ozma Records to make all of that available for us Earthlings to hear; when it succeeds, we can look forward to listening to — and seeing — the same things as whatever beings Voyager 1 and 2 encounter in their travels. </p> <p>The project intends to release it on vinyl (a 3-record <em>non-gold</em> set), as well as in MP3 format. </p> <p>Meanwhile, I think I'll go re-watch <a href="https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000055ZOB/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&camp=1789&creative=9325&creativeASIN=B000055ZOB&linkCode=as2&tag=httptwitc0ac8-20&linkId=0f64b1e602bfe9339646dd31002e0ebd" target="_blank">Cosmos</a> again, just to remind myself of how much of a visionary <a href="https://www.amazon.com/gp/search/ref=as_li_qf_sp_sr_tl?ie=UTF8&tag=httptwitc0ac8-20&keywords=carl%20sagan&index=aps&camp=1789&creative=9325&linkCode=ur2&linkId=4a8e89ff22aa2c5d274762f46626a55f" target="_blank">Carl Sagan</a> really was. </p> <p><em>Hat tip to the <a href="http://www.nytimes.com/2016/09/22/science/nasa-voyager-golden-record-carl-sagan-kickstarter.html?smid=fb-nytscience&smtyp=cur&_r=2" target="_blank">New York Times</a>.</em> </p>
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Voyager 1 Voyager 2 Carl Sagan NASA aliens music Voyager Record Voyager Interstellar Mission Kickstarter Ozma Records Beethoven Chuck Berry gold record Cosmos