ENVIRONMENT & TECHNOLOGY Flexible Technology WARM-UP Quale pensate sia l invenzione tecnologica più interessante o utile degli ultimi tempi? Fate un elenco e confrontatevi dicendo perché non ne fareste a meno. SPEAKING PAIR WORK 19 Can you imagine having flexible computer screens and mobile phones which change shape when you get a new message? Do you think it s impossible? Well, it s not! Flexible technology is emerging and is already used in smartphones, laptops, tablets and even TVs. As thin as paper Human Media Lab, a Canadian laboratory, has invented a model of mobile phone called MorePhone that is flexible and changes shape when it rings or receives messages by lifting its corners. This new technology is based on a type of flexible plastic which creates layers of electronic transistors, and it was invented in Cambridge, UK, by an organisation called Plastic Logic. Rachel Lichten, an engineer who works there, says that the idea of this new technology came from the aspect of paper when it is crumpled or twisted. 1 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 44 READING What can they do? These new flexible screens can be big or small and are easy to read. They can be black and white or any colour. They are so resistant that scientists say that you can even jump on them, and they don t break. Also, they use very little power, so they don t need large batteries. They are very easy to carry around because they are very thin, and they are also easy to read in direct sunlight. People could use this new technology to monitor health, for smart-watches or as second screens for mobile phones. The new frontier is to create rollable displays for computers: the displays could be perfectly curved and bigger than traditional ones. A new challenge Plastic Logic started working on this technology fourteen years ago, but it takes a lot to bring it into everyday life. Their new challenge now is to help people to think of new ways to use it. People don t immediately accept or like new technology, but when they see that it helps them and makes their life easier, they love it. Would you like to have a phone or a computer like this? How could it be useful for you? GLOSSARY to carry around: portare in giro challenge: sfida crumpled: stropicciato engineer: ingegnere layer: strato to seem: sembrare to try: provare wallet: portafoglio Unisci l inizio e la fine di ogni frase. Human Media Lab invented Rachel Lichten Flexible screens are They don t need large batteries You can put a flexible screen mobile phone People don t immediately accept a. b. c. d. e. f. works at Plastic Logic, in the UK. because they use little power. MorePhone, a phone that can change its shape. in a book or in a wallet . new technology. very thin but resistant.