Hey Fivers!

Quick update: rather than force a new edition of Fives down your throat just because we hit the week mark, I've instead decided to just make sure I actually have Five great things to show you before sending. If this falls on Tuesday or Wednesday, great! If not, well so be it. I hope that's okay with you -- not that I really asked you for your permission anyway :) Cool? Alright, let's go!
1. Artificial Sky
Okay, it's technically just a skylight. This one costs ~$60,000 though, and for good reason. This skylight is designed to mimic the color and brightness of real sunlight and a clear blue sky. You'll have to see the video to really see what I'm saying but the positioning of LED light as a "Sun" and the color composition of the skylight is really convincing (and surprising complex to produce). At that price, not sure it is worth it for the average consumer but who knows what we may see in the future -- would definitely brighten the mood in many offices and may also help with winter sleep budgeting in places like Boston and Iceland. [Video]
2. 6D Printing
6D might be a bit of a misnomer here but once you see what this printer can do you'll understand what I mean. This isn't your average 3D printer. This printer is using an industrial grade 6-axis Kuka robot (high precision robotic arm), 4 moving printing heads (where the plastic is extruded from), and a unique rapid cooling system. This allows this 3D printing robot to print much more complex designs at much higher speed and accuracy. This is what 3D printers will be like one day, intelligently building complex components by articulating their nozzles at different angles, rather than requiring the user to make a part that's "printer friendly." [Link] [Video]
3. Smartphone HIV Testing
This is one seriously impressive smartphone attachment. A team of researchers from Columbia has built a smartphone dongle that uses your smartphone as an energy source and diagnostic device to quickly (15minutes!) screen blood samples for HIV and syphilis. The secret here is there use of low-cost and low-energy components to perform the common ELISA assay. They're already piloting in Rwanda and are looking to adding other tests onto the device. Cannot wait to see the impact this device will make. [Link]
4. Light in Flight!
Another shameless plug for the amazing research going on in our group at the MIT Media Lab along with our collaborators. Here we describe a technique for single photon (a small packet of light) capture to track events at picosecond speed (that's 0.000000000001 seconds). In fact, they can actually use this to see light as it flies through the air. To illustrate the concept further, the researchers used lasers to create a charged pocket of gas in thin air (aka plasma aka fireball) and then film the entire process. This is the first time anything like this was visualized with such detail (make sure you check out the video). This technique will allow us so study high-speed reactions with amazing detail. [Link] [Video Download]
5. Circuit Board Printer
This one's for the nerds out there -- a pretty successful kickstarter campaign has just made this printer a really promising reality ($237K for a $70K goal!). I know we talked about 3D electronics printing last time, but this one is even more fundamental. Got a neat circuit layout you want to test out? Too bad, it's going to take you a couple days to get your printed board ordered and delivered for testing. What if you just need to test out a layout or configuration real quick? Nothing super fancy...this is where Voltera comes in. It uses conductive ink and the software Electrical Engineers are familiar with using to print out your circuit boards in record time right on your desk. Great for the hobbyist and prototyper! [Link]
Fives is written by Rohan Puri