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The Newest Tech Innovations at NYC Media Lab's Third Annual Summit

Last week, dozens of talented students and professors gathered at NYC Media Lab's Third Annual Summit, hosted at The New School, to present innovative designs and concepts such as games, web platforms, and apps.
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People have been waiting decades for the flying car but it has not arrived yet -- for better, for worse.

In the meantime, we conform ourselves to Candy Crush on bending "smart phones," swapping filters in Instagram or filming not-so-Titanic Vimes.

The truth is that as fast as technology does fly, it still takes time fund great ideas and develop their respective apps.

Last week, dozens of talented students and professors gathered at NYC Media Lab's Third Annual Summit, hosted at The New School, to present innovative designs and concepts such as games, web platforms, and apps. And while some are demos or are not quite ready for commercial exposure, we cannot underestimate the potential (remember, Mark Zuckerberg was a student when he concocted the idea of Facebook in his dormitory, and Steve Jobs was merely 21 years old when he designed Apple's first computer).

Among the designs at this year's Annual Summit was Murder Machine, a web platform that enumerates the violence and deaths currently afflicting Venezuela, a genius visual map of what people usually eat and the products' corresponding food labels, and even a 3D printing of a penis wall that responds to music, the rise and fall of the stock market, and movements.

The list below compiles the 10 most noteworthy projects and designs from the Annual Summit -- the latest in cutting edge media and technology until that flying car comes around.

One of the greatest multimedia tools for visualizing what's going on the "City never sleeps." This platform shows you on real-time data about trendy events, news and activities from New York City extracting geo-tagged images and texts from social media. You can see photos from a concert in Williamsburg or tracking what people are posting about Time Square or Central Park. Raz Schwartz, a Cornell Tech's Post Doc Researcher, designed this useful application that could keep you busy exploring the city.

Bored of the same image filters? David Muñoz from NYU was too, thus he set about developing this platform to animate still images by manipulating colors. Would you Flicker yourself? Shoot him an email at

After Anna Wintour discovers this, the fashion industry as we know it will never be the same. Parsons The New School for Design student Birce Özkan has designed a skirt that imitates a bird in flight, with feathers that flutter as the wearer walks. This follows a built-in biological compass and sensors that makes them fly based on the earth's magnetic field. The wearable technology won't be limited to just skirts; talks are in the works for a possible men's suit design.

This is no joke. Interested in learning how to move like Nicki Minaj, or confirming an already mastered skill, this app will tell you if you are a #twerkmonster or #twerkfail. The design is easy: put your phone in your pocket, move while following instructions and get scored. Houtan Fanisalek and Ken Kruger, graduated from Columbia Engineering, are the responsible of this.

A new fancy way to... "look it up." If you want to find Karl Lagerfield's cat or Beyoncé's dresses you probably will find "massive garbage" through Google. This app wanted to provide you infinite links of premium content that can be found only in glossy magazines. It looks like Pinterest and when you press some image it will suggest you content from publications like Harper's Bazaar, Elle and Cosmopolitan. They claim this will give "a new way to explore professionally-generated content."

I guess you have friends get offended if you don't comment on their pictures. I know. Some Columbia students are developing a marvelous tool that will suggest you comments you can add on your friend's pictures (i.e. in Facebook) just with pressing a button. Using a big database it would recognize attributes on the image that predicts the viewer responses such as "How cute" or something a bit more elaborate like "super jealous, gorgeous shot, lovely strong composition." The Chrome extension tool will be available soon, meanwhile you can try it on its demo website.

If you are one, like me, that have tons of opened tabs and keep opening pages without finishing none studies said we become to understand less. But this app is bringing a holy solution for that digital mess. With just rolling your mouse over a hyperlink, it will automatically show you a personalized preview of information of the new page. Based on your web interaction and prior readings, it predicts what information would you be of your interest. This is now available for Chrome or Firefox and it was designed by Paul Pangaro, faculty of School of Visual Arts.

If you enjoy music, you will love this. This accessory, created by Ezgi Ucar from Parsons, has place for fashionable beads, which create music when you touch them. Moreover, you can change the beads and play different sounds. As she describes this is a "personal musical instrument you can carry around as an accessory."

Overwhelmed by storms of news and information? This app promises you answer your questions regarding trendy issues. The Q&A based system will summarize your doubts about, for example, what is ISIS or what's going on in the day. This useful tool created by Billy Shaw from NYU will coming this winter.

Out, a Coming Out App

Coming out would be safer and more accessible... coming soon. This app aims to provide useful tools and guide LGBT youth step-by-step through the process of expressing their sexual orientation or gender identity. If the young is worried about how to coming out with parents or which way would work better, the app would recommend a range of resources such professional counseling, movies, and articles depend on the situation. Eddie Chen, a student from NYU Polytechnic School of Engineering, hopes find funding and permissions to make accessible his project.

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