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Think there’s no use for old technology? Think again! New technology inventions have been happening more frequently for years now, but some of them are actually just a new spin on old beloved tech. We sifted through some of these exact scenarios and found some surprising new uses for the technologies of yesterday.
With obsolescence built into most laptops and people upgrading them regularly, there are a lot of old ones heading for the landfill. How can this cycle be broken? Look no further than the laptop fans! These can be recycled into renewable energy generators and turned into little wind turbines capable of providing enough power to recharge a cell phone. Get detailed info on how to create your own here using another old technology: CDs.
On a much larger scale, one of the most famous aircrafts ever, the Boeing 747, has been reinvented as an emergency services vehicle. The former commercial airliner is being used to help control wildfires as it can drop up to 19,200 gallons of water or fire retardant in just six seconds very low to the ground, then climb away quickly. Find out why this old tech is perfect for this new use.
A team of engineers at Caltech found a way to use computer-chip manufacturing technologies to create the reflective materials seen on safety vests, running shoes, and glow-in-the-dark road signs. The new reflective nanostructures can also be used to communicate with remote sensors, drones and satellites. Get the full story here.
Richard Turere is a Masai boy who used old automobile parts to invent “lion lights”, a new technology that plays a key role in helping to conserve the African lions threatening his community. The lights are made from a car battery, a motorcycle indicator box, a switch and a flashlight, and they are used to safely scare lions away from his family’s livestock enclosures. More people in the community are now using them, meaning fewer lions are being killed to protect cows. Listen to Richard’s TED Talk here.
New York band, Anamanaguchi, is using Nintendo tech from 1985 to create digital music today. They play live instruments and stream it through a hacked Nintendo Entertainment System to create new digital sounds. There is a wider movement known as Chiptune which includes bands all over the world using old tech, such as Nintendo Game Boys and Nintendo DS, to make music. Much of this music is then used in today’s video games.
The opportunities to repurpose old tech are endless! All it takes is a look at your old equipment to fire up some new ideas for innovative advancements. We’re sure there are tons more inventive uses of old technology out there so let us know what brilliant new technology you’ve created from obsolete technology.