See-through hoods, an audiophile’s dream and more

JWT's Jed Churcher shares a snapshot of what's been getting his (and other tech enthusiasts') attention this year.

occipital structure sensorEach week, strategy‘s sister publication Stimulant invites a guest contributor to submit items of inspiration. This week, Jed Churcher, VP, creative director at JWT whipped together a list of spectacular new technology that you too could use to stimulate your imagination for innovation.

By Jed Churcher

Structure Sensor

Sure, we’ve all seen the demos of Oculus Rift, but for only a few hundred bucks, you can turn your iPad into a 3D-scanning, augmented-reality powerhouse.

This small device, called the Structure Sensor by San Fran-based Occipital, snaps onto your iPad and generates a real-time 3D scan while mapping the image from the iPad camera to create photo-real scans.

What can you do with it? Precisely measure every corner of a room by just spinning around. Play hyper-real augmented-reality games. Scan any object as a 3D model – including yourself. Did someone say “personalized bobble-head?”

Vehicular magic

You have to see this video to believe it.

Land Rover is developing new technology that lets you see what’s under your front wheels when climbing steep inclines – virtually removing the hood. Using cameras and sensors, an image is projected onto the windshield.

So, in the near future, you’ll be able to see the rugged terrain below you – or, if you’re from New York, the motorcycle gang you just ran over.

Pono player

Steve Jobs may have changed how we listen to music, but now Canadian-born Neil Young is out to take that revolution to audiophile levels.

His digital music player, called Pono, claims to bring back the details in music that the MP3 generation never knew existed. His Kickstarter campaign raised over $6 million, and now he’s building an online music store to sell high-res FLAC files with all of the major labels already on board.

Set to launch in October, Pono has potential to bring back the iPod culture that was killed off by that phone in your pocket.

Works with Nest

Nest changed the thermostat. And then the smoke detector.

Now, Nest is becoming a platform for developers, making all kinds of seemingly unrelated products work with it.

Imagine your smoke detector goes off. Nest will make all of your LED light bulbs flash red. Your car, your workout tracker and your garage door opener all work together so you’ll always arrive home to the right temperature. That’s insane – and exciting.