Ah, Keurig Coffee Machines, those coffee makers that take a little cup, drop it in, and out comes a nice cup of coffee in whatever flavor you like. People buy those coffee makers, and find inexpensive sources for those little cups you drop in, since the Keurig brand isn’t at the price they want to pay.


TechDirt is reporting that Green Mountain Coffee Roasters, the company behind the coffee makers is working on the next generation coffee maker that won’t accept those third party coffee drop-ins any more, if those drop-ins aren’t licensed.

You know, pretty much how a lot of printers work with ink cartridges these days. Except with the printers, if you put in a third party ink cartridge, it’ll probably work, you just won’t have the printer tell you things like how much ink is left.

I imagine this won’t go over very well.

Via Ars Technica.

Sometimes the simplest things work the best. Researchers at Cornell, University of Chicago and iRobot (the Roomba folks) have created a robot gripper that is made with ground coffee and a latex balloon.

Basically, they vacuum air out of the coffee filled balloon and the structure inside becomes rigid. Let air in, and the structure relaxes. Think of how hard a brick of coffee is, and what it’s like after you cut through the vacuum packing.

The balloon presses into the object that they want to grip, vacuum out the air, and the balloon and coffee grip the object. A very inexpensive solution to a problem many people have been working on for a long time.

Check out the details and video at Physorg.com.