It's a sign from ... the sun

Written by Heather Clancy, Contributor

With apologies to Katrina and the Waves, the one-hit wonder band responsible for "Walking on Sunshine," this one could also be titled "commuting by sunshine."

Solar-powered sign maker Synchromatics has been named Inventor of the Month by Autodesk, which (of course) sells digital prototyping software that was used to create the technology. Synchromatics' basic concept is pretty cool to start with -- transit signs that provide updates about schedules at transportation shelters and that could be used as the basis of smart-city transportation systems. This YouTube video shows some examples and includes an interview.

Synchromatics, of course, uses Autodesk's Digital Prototyping applications in its work. This feature helps the company design each of its signs according to the climate in which it will be used -- from harsh northern U.S. winters to hurricane conditions in more tropical parts of the company. Using the Autodesk software, Synchromatics is able to test the signs without actually wasting the money to create physical prototypes.

This post was originally published on Smartplanet.com

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