Archive for the ‘Geek’ Category
The phrase “the phones are running hot” has the potential for a double meaning in the smartphone age, with increasingly processor-intensive apps being used on mobile devices. Desktop computers make use of water cooling to keep their CPUs from overheating, so why can’t smartphones? Why not, indeed. NEC has done just that with the Medias X N-06E, the world’s first water-cooled smartphone.
At the heart of the Medias X N-06E is a quad-core Snapdragon S4 Pro running at 1.7 GHz that has its heat drawn away to the sides of the phone by a water-filled heatpipe. Of course, this chip can be found in a range of devices, including the LG Optimus G Pro and HTC One, neither of which seem to be experiencing overheating issues.
While the chip supports clocking up to 1.9 GHz, NEC is sticking to 1.7 GHz for the water-cooled phone, so it’s unlikely users will see any real performance boost. The only real benefits we can see would be the potential to possibly extend the life of the chip or keep the phone cooler in your hot little hand…
The phone comes running Android 4.2 and also features a 4.7-inch 720 x 1,280 OLED display, 13.1-megapixel shooter, 2,300 mAh battery and waterproof and dustproof casing (IPX5, 8/IP5X) – which also gives users the option of dunking the phone in a pool of water if they want some other form of water cooling.
Oh, it comes in pinkish or white and has lots of sparkly-warkly accessories, too.
…The White House is launching its #WeTheGeeks initiative, a series of online video chats meant to “highlight the future of science, technology and innovation in the United States.” The first one happened Thursday at 2 pm ET on the White House’s Google+ page and included four leading thinkers in science and technology. We at CNN.com began to wonder what would happen if there really was a part of the dusty old U.S. Constitution devoted to geeks. So we, who are geeks ourselves, drafted one. Below, you will find Article I of the Geek Constitution.
THE GEEK CONSTITUTION OF THE UNITED STATES…
All exponential powers herein applied to numbers shall not be imaginary, or be powers of three, unless it is deemed applicable.
Each House shall respect curiosity and the search for knowledge.
Members are encouraged to make scientific discoveries, if they so desire, but they may indulge any other topic of their choosing.
Such proclaimed Geeks shall be able to disarm the Keeg, to be heretofore known as the inverse Geek.
Horses may be ridden, unless it is declared that more pony is required. In that case, rainbow-colored ponies shall suffice.
The House of Representatives shall be a weekly gathering, and leaders from each state shall be determined by rolling a d20.
No person shall be a Representative who shall not have memorized at least 50 digits of the mysterious number pi.
The Senate will gather in a laboratory. Some members will be responsible for conducting experiments, while others will take measurements. White laboratory coats may be worn, but are optional.
No Person shall be a Senator until they can recite the periodic table of elements in their sleep.
The time, place and manner of holding elections for Senators and Representatives can be calculated using complex equations. Such results shall be recorded in binary format.
The “Constitution” carries on from there. A lot!
SpaceX’s Grasshopper doubled its highest leap to date to rise 24 stories or 80.1 meters, hovering for approximately 34 seconds and landing safely using closed loop thrust vector and throttle control.
Grasshopper consists of a Falcon 9 first stage and is 33.5 meters tall. For perspective a 6 ft mannequin cowboy is on the rocket.
While we hear a lot about the ways in which hovering aerial drones can potentially be used to violate peoples’ privacy, it’s always nice to know that they can help us, too. That was the case last Friday when RCMP from the Canadian city of Saskatoon, Saskatchewan used a remotely-operated quadcopter to locate the victim of a single-vehicle rollover, which occurred in the countryside at near-freezing temperatures.
At 12:20 am, the Saskatoon RCMP first received a report of the rollover, and went out to the accident site to investigate – they were joined at the scene by fire rescue and emergency medical response teams. The car was located, but even after conducting a 200-meter ground search of the area, no occupants could be found.
An air ambulance helicopter was then called in, the crew of which used a night vision system to conduct a larger, aerial search. When that search also proved fruitless, the RCMP brought in Corporal Doug Green, a Forensic Collision Reconstructionist, along with the detachment’s forward-looking infrared (FLIR) camera-equipped Draganflyer X4-ES quadcopter – the drone is made by Draganfly Innovations, which is itself based in Saskatoon.
By 2:10 am, the 25 year-old lone driver of the car made a 911 call from his mobile phone, letting police know that he was cold, and didn’t know where he was. With some help from the phone company, the GPS coordinates of his phone were triangulated, indicating that the call was made approximately 3.2 km south of the accident site.
Green moved to that area, and the X4-ES was relaunched. It picked up three heat signatures on its FLIR, one of which was the injured driver. He was located in a wooded area 200 meters from the site of his phone call, curled in a ball next to a snow bank at the base of a tree. He wasn’t wearing any outdoor clothing, had lost his shoes, and was unresponsive. Ground crews soon reached him, and proceeded to get him a hospital.
According to the RCMP, “Without the UAV and FLIR, searchers would not have been able to locate the driver until daylight.” For its part, Draganfly Innovations stated, “To our knowledge, this is the first time a public safety agency has saved a life using a sUAS (small Unmanned Aerial System) helicopter”.
Bravo! I’ve spoken before about not only repurposing our military – anyone else recall the “peace dividend”? That level of understanding and political will isn’t needed for repurposing and humanitarian use of hardware that folks think destined only for acts of death and destruction.
They may look somewhat bulky and a bit like someone wandered out of an avant garde theater, but a pair of concept pieces developed by students and the Royal College of Arts in London allow wearers to fine tune their senses of sight and hearing. Called “Eidos,” from the Greek for “form,” “essence,” “type,” or “species,” the system uses sensors and computer processing to select sensory input and alter it for applications in sport, the arts and medicine…
Eidos Vision is a simple arrangement of a visor equipped with a camera and a head-mounted display attached to a computer. Its function is to take the input of the camera and process it so that what comes out of the eyepieces provides a sense of motion similar to long-exposure photography. In other words, the wearer sees moving objects as a series of overlapping images moving across the scene. This means that the viewer doesn’t just see things moving, but also trends and patterns of motion.
Behind the art deco exterior of Eidos Audio are directional microphones hooked to a computer that feeds into two earpieces and a transducer in the mouth for bone conduction. This means that the wearer not only hears through the ears, but also picks up the sound through the teeth and jaw bones directly in the inner ear. In other words, you can hear people talking inside your head.
The team sees a number of applications for the Eidos system. Eidos Vision could be used in sports to allow trainers to analyze performance in real time and by spectators to enhance their experience. It could also be used to add a new dimension to pursuits such as fashion and ballet.
Meanwhile, Eidos Audio might be used for listeners at concerts to focus on one instrument or singer while muting the rest. In addition to the aesthetic or sporting applications, the team also says that the technology could be used to help those whose senses have been lessened by age or disability, or to help students suffering from ADHD to avoid distraction.
Bubble baths and soapy dishwater, the refreshing head on a beer and the luscious froth on a cappuccino. All are foams, beautiful yet ephemeral as the bubbles pop one by one.
Two University of California, Berkeley, researchers have now described mathematically the successive stages in the complex evolution and disappearance of foamy bubbles, a feat that could help in modeling industrial processes in which liquids mix or in the formation of solid foams such as those used to cushion bicycle helmets.
“This work has application in the mixing of foams, in industrial processes for making metal and plastic foams, and in modeling growing cell clusters,” said James Sethian, a UC Berkeley professor of mathematics. “These techniques, which rely on solving a set of linked partial differential equations, can be used to track the motion of a large number of interfaces connected together, where the physics and chemistry determine the surface dynamics…”
“Foams were a good test that all the equations coupled together,” said Robert Saye, graduating from UC Berkeley this May with a PhD in applied mathematics. “While different problems are going to require different physics, chemistry and models, this sort of approach has applications to a wide range of problems.”
Yup. I love this stuff.
This kind of info is available for any website
By now this should be celebrity endorser rule No. 1: Make sure that when you tweet your love for a phone, you do it from that phone…But, once again the rule has been broken, this time by Spanish tennis player David Ferrer, tweeting his affection for Samsung’s Galaxy S4, and doing so from an iPhone.
According to AppleInsider, the tweet was quickly deleted and replaced with one not sent from an iPhone.
But, of course, the change came only after people noticed, saved a copy of the tweet and began pointing out the obvious contradiction between stated opinion and the real world.
Ferrer is in good company with other celebs who have made similar moves, including singer Alicia Keys, who briefly continued to tweet from her iPhone after accepting a gig as creative director for BlackBerry.
Hilarious. Especially the part about paying for an endorsement from someone who obviously hasn’t a clue about the details of their product they “love”.
Enjoyment – true – doesn’t have to be dependent on geek qualifications; but, at least use the right phone or eat the right apple pie.
To old fogeys like me, it seems like only yesterday that the coolest way to go online was to dial up the AP wire service bulletin board on a 300-baud modem, but it was actually two decades ago that the web as we know it burst onto our world. On Tuesday, it was 20 years ago that the World Wide Web went public, when CERN made the technology behind it available on a royalty-free basis. To mark the occasion, the organization announced that it is recreating the world’s very first website for posterity.
It wasn’t much to look at – just text and hyperlinks – and the subject was the World Wide Web itself, so it wasn’t exactly like finding a treasure trove of LOLcats or a Kirk vs Picard flame war, but the first website did mark a significant jump forward. Flash animation, Java plugins, apps, streaming video and even images and audio were still in the future, but that first site turned the internet from the domain of computer scientists and hobbyists into the information super system that modern society now depends upon.
Invented in 1989 at CERN by Tim Berners-Lee, the web was first designed as a way for physicists around the world to share information. It was by no means the first or only way to share information online, but by making the software to run a web server available for free and then throwing in a basic browser and code library, CERN was able to do for the internet what Henry Ford did for the motor car. It went from the plaything for the few to being the workhorse for the masses…
Unfortunately, like many historic firsts, there wasn’t much incentive to preserve the first website that Berners-Lee hosted on a NeXT computer. After a few years, the site was retired and the URL merely redirected to another site. The NeXT machine that acted as the original web server was still at CERN, but it was a museum piece.
Now, to celebrate 20 years of people typing “WWW,” CERN is bringing the first website back to life. The NeXt machine has been refurbished and the URL has been reactivated as CERN starts a project to collect and preserve the information assets that made up that first foray into our modern digital world.
One of those “old fogies” – I remember getting “onto” this new WWW-thingie as soon as it started up. I’d been online since 1983 – first as a necessity. I wouldn’t receive my sales commissions unless orders were sent online directly to the company’s one online server the other side of the country.
Then, to BBS and communications online. Traveling my sales territory with my Tandy Model 100 laptop computer and 300 baud modem. Which I still have somewhere in the closet next to my study. How far we have come in such a comparatively short period. How welcome and useful it all is, now.
Insurgents pose on White House lawn
Hackers took control of the Associated Press Twitter account on Tuesday and sent a false tweet of two explosions in the White House that briefly sent U.S. financial markets reeling.
In the latest high-profile hacking incident involving social media service Twitter, an official @AP account reported that two explosions at the White House injured President Barack Obama.
AP spokesman Paul Colford quickly confirmed the tweet was “bogus,” but within 3 minutes of the tweet hitting the Web, virtually all U.S. markets took a plunge on the false news in what one trader described as “pure chaos…”
Markets quickly recovered their losses after the tweet was knocked down. Some traders blamed automatic electronic trading for the sharp fall and bounce back…
A group calling itself the Syrian Electronic Army, which is supportive of that country’s leader, President Bashar al-Assad, during the two-year civil war, on Tuesday claimed responsibility on its own Twitter feed for the AP hack…
Woo-Hoo! Script kiddie political activism strikes again – achieving nothing more than a 3-minute orgasm in someone’s basement. No doubt they returned to WOW – and will join an online meetup after midnight in some cobwebby corner of internet grunge to plot the next international “attack”.
Another incident which will change nothing in the lives of Syrian citizens brutalized by civil war.