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Tag: biodiversity

Continental score

Image analysis can find hidden ruins or save elephants’ lives. But that’s just the start. A female-led startup in Nairobi is using satellite images and artificial intelligence to strengthen the continent’s agriculture industry. After all, around 60% of sub-saharan Africa’s jobs are dependent on it - most of them smallholders significantly impacted by climate change. The machine-based image analysis...

Landscape legacy

Donations left by a desert robot could help create an oasis. The same cannot be said, however, for humans leaving their “mark” and their tissues in nature. Enter an Israeli design student’s sustainable toilet paper. Made from oranges and aloe vera, each individual leaf is woven with plant seeds such as mint, rose or parsley. Though thicker than traditional...

Flash forward

Wind turbines warn birds about deadly collisions. Lions, meanwhile, are often shot to protect farm animals, and ensure smallholders have food on their plates. In the last 20 years, however, the lion population in Africa has reduced by half. Now a resourceful Maasai founder and his startup are looking to arrest this decline through a solar electricity-powered light system....

On the tiles

Building elements filled with seeds and surfboards containing straw are allowing nature to grow. Now, a Hong Kong-based startup is 3D printing hexagonal tiles from clay which are installed on the seafloor and planted with young coral. A coral-specific algorithm tells a robotic arm how to print the tiles' labyrinthine structure. This not only promotes growth but enables corals...

Natural winner

Documenting fish stocks makes commercial fishing more sustainable. But certain organisms such as fast-growing algae create havoc for aquatic ecosystems. They deprive fish of their basis for life. Water fleas feed on algae, however, and thus have a positive impact on the natural order of things. Selecting four different genotypes of water flea, a female student from Canada examined...

Preservation without borders

A computer-controlled hand is removing barriers for the deaf-blind community. And now a research team from Queensland University has developed an app that promotes international dialogue between scientists aiming to preserve endangered species of bird. Often, birds’ territory extends across continents and linguistic boundaries. In the app, species at risk of extinction are categorised according to language. A move...

Sensitive classification

Winged beasts can teach us a lot about aerodynamics and joint protection. Insects are an incredibly important part of our world. Now, thanks to a research team at Copenhagen University, they can be automatically identified and catalogued using infrared sensors and artificial intelligence. If an insect flies past, a sensor automatically measures its wingspan. The AI compares the size...

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