Google co-founder Larry Page secretly invested over $100M in two flying car startups

June 9, 2016 by  
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The future is here—or, at least it could be getting closer. A little company called Zee.Aero has been working for the past several years to develop a small electric plane that can take off and land vertically. In essence, it’s an honest to goodness flying car. What we didn’t know about the company, which set up shop adjacent to Google’s Mountain View HQ, is that the man backing the operations is none other than Google co-founder Larry Page. Bloomberg Businessweek broke the news , sending the collective tech and transportation worlds into a tizzy of anticipation. Page’s involvement in the flying car startup has been kept under wraps since the company’s founding in 2010. Reporters long suspected Zee.Aero had some sort of ties to Google , but few suspected the truth we learned today. Now, though, it’s become clear that Page—who co-founded Google with Sergey Brin, and is now the CEO of Google’s parent company, Alphabet Inc —is Zee.Aero’s primary source of funding. Page has invested more than $100 million in the company since its creation. But, wait, there’s more. In addition to backing the flying car venture, Page has also been channeling funds into another startup, Kitty Hawk, which is working on a similar project. If this scenario is starting to sound familiar, it’s because it’s not wholly unlike the investments Elon Musk has made, using his personal wealth to back companies who are working on projects like rocketing to Mars or building ultra-uber-high-speed public transit . Like Musk, Page is putting his money where his dreams are, much to the delight of futuristic car buffs everywhere. Related: Terrafugia’s flying car will be a reality by 2018 As for the flying car itself, what is known to the public is largely limited to patent filings (like the image above, from 2012) and the rare sneak peek of a test flight. Zee.Aero is growing fast, with 150 employees and it recently expanded operations moving into a nearby airplane hangar. There, two prototypes take regular test flights, away from the public’s prying eyes. Meanwhile, the much smaller Kitty Hawk continues to grind away on a competing design. Reportedly, employees of the two companies do not interact, protecting each team’s opportunity to innovate without interference. Despite flying car prototypes in construction, and aloft, there is no word on when, if ever, this car of the future will be released to the public. It’s entirely possible that it will never happen, though, because this could just be one of those things billionaires do when they have more money than they know what to do with. + Zee.Aero Via The Verge Images via Wikipedia and USPTO

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Google co-founder Larry Page secretly invested over $100M in two flying car startups

The New FlyNano Electric Seaplane Would Make James Bond Jealous

June 15, 2012 by  
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A group of Finnish engineers have developed the FlyNano – a single-seater electric seaplane that can soar through the skies and land on any body of water. The tiny seaplane was originally designed to be powered by two-stroke gas and electric powertrains, but thanks to advancements in electric motors and lithium-ion batteries over the past few years, it is now completely electric! Read the rest of The New FlyNano Electric Seaplane Would Make James Bond Jealous Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: carbon fiber , electric motor , electric planes , electric seaplane , flynano , James Bond , lithium ion batteies , seaplane

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The New FlyNano Electric Seaplane Would Make James Bond Jealous

US Coal-Produced Electricity To Fall To The Lowest Level Since 1949!

June 15, 2012 by  
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As we reported in March, coal currently accounts for less than 40% of US electricity production. But now new  research from IHS CERA  reveals that coal use in the US has dropped to the lowest level since 1949, as the nation switches to natural gas and cleaner, cheaper alternatives. This year, US utilities firms are forecast to burn 808 million tons of coal, a 13% decline from last year and the fewest tons since 1992. Amazingly, this is the lowest level of  coal-produced electricity  since the government began collecting this data in 1949, but what’s even more impressive is the speed at which it is happening. Four years ago, the amount of electricity that came from coal was 50% and by 2020, it is expected to account for just 30% of the country’s power supply. Read the rest of US Coal-Produced Electricity To Fall To The Lowest Level Since 1949! Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags:

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US Coal-Produced Electricity To Fall To The Lowest Level Since 1949!

Purdue Team Tackling ‘No-Sleep Energy Bugs’ That Drain Smartphone Batteries

June 15, 2012 by  
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Are you fed up with your smartphone battery draining by lunchtime? Especially when you’re not even using it? Well, a team from Purdue University have set out to tackle this problem by proposing a method that automatically detects “no-sleep energy bugs” — a type of software glitch that can drain your battery without you knowing it. Read the rest of Purdue Team Tackling ‘No-Sleep Energy Bugs’ That Drain Smartphone Batteries Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: API , no-sleep energy bugs , Purdue University , smartphone battery , smartphone battery life , smartphone battery status , why does my smartphone battery drain so fast

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Purdue Team Tackling ‘No-Sleep Energy Bugs’ That Drain Smartphone Batteries

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