Computers to fly kites and produce energy
As the race to cool down the globe heats up expect to see more of these types of inventions or so called inventions.
A new way to harness wind energy may take off now that computers have learned to kite surf.
Experienced kite surfers know that on a calm day they can maximise the power they draw from the breeze by flying their aerofoil-shaped kites through the air in a figure of eight.
"The amount of energy you get from the figure of eight is massive, easily 10 times what you get from just parking the kite downwind," says Allister Furey, a roboticist and avid kite surfer at the University of Sussex in the UK.
The concept seems simple enough and perhaps that's the best way to harnass the power of the wind.
Researchers have been trying to use high-flying kites tethered to turbines to generate electricity: when the kites tug on the lines this turns the turbine.
But like all wind based technologies they have a major flaw. They don't work when it's not windy...even if computers are running.
While the idea works well when the wind blows consistently, the computers controlling the kites run into trouble when there are gusts of wind or lulls, often leading to crashes.