Episode 2 Technobytes


Episode 2

Investigating new and future technology. Looking at fuel made from coffee and being able to record dreams in the future.


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Transcript


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Welcome to Technobytes!

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Not quite as long as your normal Technobabble

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but just as tech-tastic!

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So, without further ado, let's check out

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the randomly named tech app to get out first tech teaser!

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Vlogster, how will we generate energy in the future?

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Oh, good work, Noah! That's a great question. So...

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Who shall I ask to check this one out?

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Eeny, meeny, miny, moe... my mate Marcus has to go!

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MARCUS SNORES

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Oh, Marcus?

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Marcy-warky?

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Hang on, Technobabblers. This should do it.

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-WAKE UP!

-What...

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Help me! Mum!

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Ha-ha! Got you! Second time this week as well!

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You should know better, Marcus!

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Oh, Vlogster! I was having a well good dream! Trust you to ruin it.

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What do you want anyways?

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Up and at 'em, Dreamboat.

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We've another of the 'babblers' questions to answer.

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All right, fair enough.

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But do us a favour, put the kettle on.

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-I'm useless unless I've had a little bit of caffeine.

-Perfect!

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Because today you're going to be learning about bioenergy

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that comes from waste coffee grounds.

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First stop, a local coffee shop where you can make yourself a cuppa.

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Oh, and while you're at it,

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I'll have a tall, super-skinny, extra wet, soya,

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cappu-mocha-choca-ccino-latte, please. Thanks.

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I'm going to name this the "Marcus Coffee". Let's go!

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Put a bit of pressure on it.

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I washed my hands, don't worry.

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And that is a perfect coffee.

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Delicious, but more importantly, this is what we're left over with!

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Bingo! And that's where your next mission comes in!

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Now that he's had his caffeine fix,

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I'm sending Marcus to a nearby university to meet techy

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Techspert Arthur Kay, who is one of the brains behind bio-bean,

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they make energy using coffee.

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Pretty cool, huh?

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This sounds crazy! Energy from coffee! Explain yourself!

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I know, absolutely!

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I mean, coffee is a strange thing to get energy from but it has

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a huge amount of energy contained within the waste coffee grounds.

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OK, so you get used coffee and instead of throwing it away,

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you make diesel and fuel pellets from this?

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Yeah, absolutely.

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So coffee also has a really high oil content

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so the oil like you put in your car, for instance, for powering

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transport systems and then the rest is a little fuel pellet.

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Instead of wood or instead of coal,

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you can use this renewable energy which can then heat your building.

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We're even looking at how it can be used as a jet fuel as well,

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which would be really cool. The first coffee-powered plane.

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I'd love to see how you make this happen.

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Well, what we have here, if you can see the little...

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The top here, there's a tiny little bit of coffee in that there

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and what's happening here is we have a solvent

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which is being warmed up and being passed through the coffee

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and taking the natural oils out from the coffee grounds.

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That process then turns it from, essentially a vegetable oil,

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into a diesel which can then be used in your car engine or your

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bus engine to get you to school.

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How do you think we're going to be making energy

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in about 20 years' time?

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What we're really doing here is, we're turning something

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that's wasted into something that's useful.

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Most of your viewers like a chocolate every now and then

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and chocolate waste can actually be used to turn into these

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fuel pellets and oils as well.

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So that whole process makes this oil here which you

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then turn into the fuel. Check that out, Vlogs.

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Biofuel!

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I don't know about you, Vlogster,

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but after all that talk about coffee, I think I need a...

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Hold that thought, Marcus, because researchers

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at the University of West England or UWE for short,

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have developed a urine-powered battery!

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-Are you serious?

-Wee-ly serious! Ha-ha!

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It's all down to tiny microbes that produce electricity when they

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eat organic matter like urine.

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Right now, the battery creates enough electricity to charge

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your mobile phone but could soon power a bathroom shower or light.

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-If it's yellow, let it mellow.

-Exactly.

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Now, Scottish scientists plan to harness energy from the sea

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using giant oysters. These buoyant flaps are fixed to the seabed

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but move backwards and forwards in the waves,

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pumping high-pressure water that drives hydroelectric turbines.

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Does it make an electric current?

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You know, ocean? Current?

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Don't go there.

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Now, ever wondered what a bladeless wind turbine looks like?

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Well, this is it.

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Spanish techsperts think this wobbly way to harness wind energy

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-will be smaller, cheaper, and more powerful and silent.

-Shh!

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Brilliant, Vlogster, but I'm really bursting, all right?

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Erm, thanks, Marcus. Moving swiftly on...

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Oh! Saved by the bell!

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It's another tech-topic coming in from one of our Technobabblers!

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Will we ever be able to record our dreams?

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Dreamy question, Taya.

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Let me access my archive drive.

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No-one really knows why you humans dream.

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But to be able to record them,

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first you need to know how much data you might be dealing with.

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Scientists think the human brain is made from around a billion neurons.

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Cells that hold and share information,

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a bit like a computer hard drive.

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The average brain can store close to 2.5 petabytes of memory,

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enough to hold 12 million Technobabble episodes.

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All my favourites.

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Here's a word that you might not know...

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An oneironaut is someone who can tell they are dreaming whilst

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they're asleep then take control of their dream.

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This is known as lucid dreaming and a company in America is

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developing a way to help you do it.

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When you go to bed, a special headset detects when you're asleep

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and the device uses sound and light

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to make you aware that you're having a dream.

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The idea is that then, you can take charge of the dream.

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Imagine!

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You could go anywhere, do anything,

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pretend to be someone amazing!

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Like me.

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Recently, scientists in Japan have found

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a way to tell what people are dreaming.

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By hooking you up to a special brain scanning computer,

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then showing you lots of different pictures,

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scientists can map how your brain reacts to each image.

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When you go to sleep,

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the computer compares the dreaming brainwaves to the ones your

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brain made when you were awake and looking at the pictures.

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If the brainwaves match,

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the computer can guess what kind of things you've been dreaming about.

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In tests, it was spot-on over 60% of the time.

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I know what my brain dreams about 100% of the time.

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Cats.

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Cats dancing the Macarena, cats riding a giant space hippo.

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HE YAWNS

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With similar brain mapping techniques, American scientists

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have used computers to create videos of what the brain is seeing.

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The results are basic but technology is advancing

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so fast that in 30 years it may well be possible to record dreams!

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Imagine that! This is the stuff that dreams are made of!

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Literally!

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And just like dreams, all good programmes must come to an end!

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See you next time!

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Technobtyes is the snack-size version of CBBCs Technobabble which investigates new and future technology. This episode features fuel made from coffee and looks at being able to record dreams in the future.


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