Blogs on the ropes, Legos on the road and more

December 20, 2013

Here’s a roundup of cool and interesting things from the week it was on the Web:

A car made almost entirely out of Legos

Sweets that don’t rot your teeth. Via the Smithsonian’s Tuan C. Nguyen:

A study, conducted by researchers in Berlin, shows that those who suck on a mint containing a particular type of bacteria actually reduce the levels of cavity-causing bacteria in their saliva. Suppressing the growth of such “bad bacteria,” in the long run, may lead to better oral hygiene and less contact with the dentist’s drill, the research suggests.

Draw circuits with this pen. Circuit Scribe is in the midst of a incredibly successful Kickstarter campaign, with over half a million dollars raised from more than 10,000 people.

Peak oil? Nah. Try peak blog.
When the man behind one of the must successful blogs in the Web’s history says that blogs are fading, his words carry weight. Jason Kottke, who once tracked hundreds of blogs on a daily basis, now reads only two. He explains the cultural switch that’s underway:

Instead of blogging, people are posting to Tumblr, tweeting, pinning things to their board, posting to Reddit, Snapchatting, updating Facebook statuses, Instagramming, and publishing on Medium. In 1997, wired teens created online diaries, and in 2004 the blog was king. Today, teens are about as likely to start a blog (over Instagramming or Snapchatting) as they are to buy a music CD. Blogs are for 40-somethings with kids.

Google Glass app recognizes sex offenders. While Google isn’t approving facial recognition apps, there are ways for users to work around that rule. Here’s one in action:

Stephen Balaban, who is developing his own facial recognition app, describes the potential this way to Forbes: “Soon you’ll be able to not only look at someone you’ve met once, but people you’ve never met before, and immediately see what you have in common.” He mentions those with Alzheimer’s as individuals whose lives would be improved by facial recognition.

Matt McFarland is the editor of Innovations. He's always looking for the next big thing. You can find him on Twitter and Facebook.
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Matt McFarland | December 20, 2013