The useless machine gets even more useless (and other stuff you missed)

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Useless machine to human operator: "STAHP!"

Now that you’ve got that shiny new tablet, e-reader, or smartphone for Christmas, now's the perfect time keep on using it. I can’t think of any better way to keep using it than to catch up on all the news you might have missed between swigs of holiday eggnog.

The useless machine advanced edition [Make]

Remember the useless machine? It’s back and even more useless than before. Forn4x, the creator of the original machine, has created an updated version of it with seven more switches that the machine immediately switches back if you toggle them. That makes it seven times more useless than before...if it’s even possible to measure uselessness (or if it wasn’t useless to measure uselessness in the first place).


The second tallest tree in the world is over 3200 years old [National Geographic]

While this 247-foot-tall tree might be significantly taller than that Christmas tree in your living room, it’s actually the second tallest tree in the world. This giant sequoia, called the President, is so large that it makes the humans climbing look like ants. But the most impressive part? The tree is over 3200 years old.

Liquid metal wires that stretch eight times their original length [PhysOrg]

Researchers from North Carolina State University have developed a springy conductive wire that can be stretched up to eight times its original length. To make the wires, the researchers used thin tubes made of an extremely elastic polymer filled with a liquid metal alloy of gallium and indium.

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This story, "The useless machine gets even more useless (and other stuff you missed)" was originally published by TechHive.

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