2009/06/30

NEW NET Issues List for 30 Jun 2009

Below is the final list of issues for the TUESDAY, 30 June 2009, NEW NET (Northeast Wisconsin Network for Economy and Technology) 7:00 - 9:00 pm weekly gathering. This week we're upstairs at Tom's Drive In, 501 N Westhill Blvd, Appleton, Wisconsin, USA.

The ‘net

1. Declaration of Health Data Rights http://adambosworth.net/2009/06/22/declaration-of-health-data-rights/ “…In almost every field today, the power of online communities, online tools, and online data has been revolutionary, whether it be finance, travel, purchasing goods, books, getting the news, or entertainment. If, for example, we want to plan a trip, we can search online, book online, print out our boarding pass online, and see what others have thought online. Our schedule is clearly there and usually, if the site is well designed, it is there in a form where we can effortlessly digitally update our online calendars as well. This revolution has led to far better information, far more freedom to plan and organize things and usually a far better experience. No more waiting in line at the counter at the airport or at the bank or at the store…Yet, in the area where it matters most, our health, virtually none of this is true. It is as though the revolution never occurred. We cannot easily see what our data is online (e.g. our labs, our prescriptions, our problem list, our images)…Further, we cannot easily take the time online to understand what this data means for us and harness the online power of experts or the opinion of others to best understand our health and where we stand…” [ http://www.techflash.com/Ignition_backs_Adam_Bosworths_latest_health_startup_Keas_49035896.html ]

2. Web Squared: Web 2.0 Five Years On http://www.web2summit.com/web2009/public/schedule/detail/10194 “…Ever since we first introduced the term "Web 2.0," people have been asking, "What’s next?" Assuming that Web 2.0 was meant to be a kind of software version number (rather than a statement about the second coming of the Web after the dotcom bust), we’re constantly asked about "Web 3.0." Is it the semantic web? The sentient web? Is it the social web? The mobile web? Is it some form of virtual reality?...Increasingly, the Web is the world – everything and everyone in the world casts an "information shadow," an aura of data which, when captured and processed intelligently, offers extraordinary opportunity and mind bending implications. Web Squared is our way of exploring this phenomenon and giving it a name…successful network applications are systems for harnessing collective intelligence…”

3. Mozilla Confirms Tuesday Release for Firefox 3.5 http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,2817,2349445,00.asp Mozilla is scheduled to release Firefox 3.5 on Tuesday morning. "The Mozilla team is mobilizing to ship Firefox 3.5 and it's looking like Tuesday morning," a Mozilla spokeswoman said…”

4. MSN Web Messenger dies on June 30, 2009 http://arstechnica.com/microsoft/news/2009/06/msn-web-messenger-dies-on-june-30-2009.ars “…On June 30, MSN Web Messenger will close; however, customers will continue to have the opportunity to connect with each other using Windows Live Hotmail's web-based IM, a version of Windows Live Messenger which is accessible through your Windows Live Hotmail account," a Microsoft spokesperson told Ars via e-mail. "We made the decision to retire MSN Web Messenger as part of our overall investment in updating and re-aligning our online services under the Windows Live brand…”

5. DARPA Hires Company to Build a Machine Reader That Scours the Web http://news.cnet.com/8301-13639_3-10274435-42.html “…DARPA has hired a company to develop a reading machine to reduce the gap between the ever increasing mountain of digitized text and the intelligence community's insatiable appetite for data input. BBN Technologies was awarded the $29.7 million contract to develop a universal text engine capable of capturing knowledge from written matter and rendering it into a format that artificial intelligence systems (AI) and human analysts can work with. The military will use the Machine Reading Program, as it's officially called, to automatically monitor the technological and political activities of nation states and transnational organizations-which could mean everything from al-Qaeda to the U.N….It should also be able to crank out one a heck of a term paper.”

Security, Privacy & Digital Controls

6. Microsoft security beta download hits limit http://www.crn.com/security/218101208 If you want to download a free copy of Microsoft Security Essentials, you might have to wait until the full version is released. Or until Redmond decides to up the 75,000-download limit for its beta testers. Less than 24 hours after it launched MSE, Microsoft has reached the maximum 75,000 downloads for its MSE free antivirus product, released Tuesday…”

7. Google access disrupted in China http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/business/8118055.stm Access to Google has been disrupted in some parts of China, amid a row over what Chinese citizens should be allowed to view over the internet. Users reported they could not access either Google's search engine or its Chinese-language version. Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Qin Gang accused Google of spreading pornography and breaking Chinese law…”

8. Bing Filters out Sensitive Results for Chinese Searches http://www.pcworld.com/businesscenter/article/167337/bing_filters_out_sensitive_results_for_chinese_searches.html Microsoft's Bing search engine filters out some sensitive results from searches made in simplified Chinese, the script used to write the language in China, searches revealed Thursday. The filtering appeared to occur for searches done both in and outside of China. A search for "Tiananmen" returned images of tanks rolling into Beijing's central square in 1989 to crush pro-democracy protests if the search was written in English or in traditional Chinese characters, which are used in Hong Kong and Taiwan. But those images did not appear for the same search done in simplified Chinese. Stately photos of the Tiananmen gate leading to Beijing's old imperial city instead filled the page…”

9. China throttles Google, U.S. ratchets up trade war over Green Dam http://www.moneymorning.com/2009/06/26/google-china/ “…China’s war on the search engine has only intensified. That has led some analysts to believe that the communist government is acting on behalf of Baidu Inc., or perhaps as part of a smear campaign to drum up support for its latest attempt to tighten its grip on Internet content that is becoming harder to control. Google’s word association feature – a drop-down box that offers suggestions based on the terms typed into the search engine – was disabled last week after a report on China Central Television (CCTV), the state television network, showed how typing the Chinese word for son could solicit terms that have lewd connotations. However, it has since been revealed that a Chinese youth, depicted in the television segment as a university student who had started an anti-Google campaign, was actually an intern at television station. Coincidentally, the lion’s share of Baidu’s first-quarter advertising budget – about $5.6 million – went to the state-owned CCTV…”

Mobile Computing & Communicating

10. AOL's AIM iPhone App Is Getting Awesome, Disruptive http://www.businessinsider.com/aols-aim-iphone-app-is-getting-awesome-disruptive-to-att-2009-6 “…Apple's new "push notifications" system -- and others like it -- could start the disruption process that could force wireless carriers to price text messages far cheaper than they are today. AOL's new AIM app for the iPhone -- available now in free, ad-supported, and $2.99, no-ad flavors -- is the start. It's the first major IM app for the iPhone's new 3.0 software that includes push notifications…It means that when you receive an IM, no matter what you're doing…Just the way text messages show up on the iPhone…soon, iPhone users will be able to get instant messages as quickly and reliably as text messages, all the time…We expect IM software companies like Meebo or eBuddy to release IM apps with push notifications that connect to all major services, including AIM, Google chat, Facebook chat, Yahoo and MSN Messenger, etc., within weeks…”

11. Ars reviews the Palm Pre, part 2: the webOS experience http://arstechnica.com/gadgets/news/2009/06/ars-palm-pre-review.ars “…I've seen the experience of information discovery and management move back and forth between two distinct paradigms. The first of these paradigms is exemplified by the early Yahoo! directory, and I'll call it the structure-and-browse paradigm. The idea here is that with a small enough data flow, you can manage incoming information by structuring it yourself, the way that Yahoo! used humans to sort newly created webpages into categories, creating a kind of giant card catalog for the Internet. You then browse the resulting structure in order to find what you're looking for. There's a threshold, though, beyond which the volume of data is so high that structure-and-browse becomes a losing battle. It's at this point that the second paradigm, which I'll call collect-and-query, becomes the best way to deal with the mass of unstructured data. This latter paradigm is exemplified by Google's approach to information discovery…the iPhone—and, indeed, the entire Apple ecosystem—presumes that your contacts exist as an information repository, the canonical copy of which exists either on your Mac or on the company's MobileMe servers. It's up to you to actively curate this repository, adding structure to it by putting contacts into groups and generally organizing the repository so that it's easily browsable…Browsing structured data is, in fact, the default mode of interaction with every single Apple product—from the Finder to iTunes to the iPod and iPhone. Palm's webOS, in contrast, is built around the collect-and-query paradigm…While Apple's phone may finally have official (albeit limited) support for multitasking, the webOS card metaphor gives users a workable way to actually manage multiple open apps…”

12. MetroPCS offers $5 unlimited international calling http://news.cnet.com/8301-1035_3-10271939-94.html Regional prepaid cell phone carrier MetroPCS announced Wednesday a new plan that allows its customers to make unlimited international calls to over 100 different countries for only $5 extra a month. To be eligible for the $5 unlimited international calling plan, users must already be signed up to an unlimited national calling plan that costs $40, $45, or $50 a month. Making international phone calls from a cell phone has typically been rather expensive with major carriers such as AT&T and Verizon Wireless. For example, AT&T offers its WorldConnect service for $3.99 extra a month, which gives subscribers lower rates on international calls. This means that a call to France still costs 22 cents a minute even with the $3.99 a month WorldConnect plan. By contrast a call to France using MetroPCS' new $5 unlimited international plan is free…”

13. Know Your Smartphones http://www.wired.com/gadgetlab/2009/06/wireds-smart-guide-for-know-your-smartphones/ “…each major U.S. carrier has a device that can legitimately compete with the iPhone. To help you make sense of it, we took three major upstarts and stacked them up against the great white hype from Cupertino. Sprint with its Pre, T-Mobile with its G1, and Verizon with its Storm. So have a gander at how the specs from these four devices compare to one another…”

14. Palm Pre Sales Topped 300,000 In June, Analyst Says http://blogs.barrons.com/techtraderdaily/2009/06/30/palm-pre-sales-topped-300000-in-june-analyst-says/ “…Pre sales into the channel in June were above 300,000 units…He says start-up problems with manufacturing and uncertainty about initial demand limited the number of phones in stock at launch to about 120,000 units - and that the inventory was sold in a matter of days. Snyder contends the company is now producing about 15,000 units a day, and likely will ship nearly 1 million phones to Sprint in the first quarter of production…”

Open Source

15. Open government advocates map out future of citizen governance http://www.govexec.com/story_page.cfm?articleid=43054&dcn=todaysnews “…Technology enthusiasts on Monday gathered at a jazz concert hall in Manhattan to plot ways to increase government transparency and accountability. The young and technocratic audience at the sixth annual Personal Democracy Forum -- virtually every participant was working on a laptop or iPhone or Tweeting -- generally gave the Obama administration credit for moving the transparency ball forward with sites such as Recovery.gov and Data.gov. The speakers, however, agreed that the new platforms are only the first step in a revolutionary change that will sweep across government in much the same way Craigslist and Wikipedia changed the private sector. "We need for transparency to be the default government," said Jeff Jarvis, a columnist and blogger and the author of What Would Google Do? (Collins Business, 2009). "We need a government that is searchable, clickable and linkable…”

16. Ohio Linux Fest [September 25-26] http://lxer.com/module/newswire/view/122418/ The Ohio Linux community continues its forward march and is gaining momentum every year. Each year brings a new group of speakers and generates more excitement—2009 will be no exception! The seventh annual Ohio LinuxFest will be on September 25-26, 2009 at the Greater Columbus Convention Center, in downtown Columbus, Ohio...”

17. Wireshark 1.2 Released With a Bundle of New Features http://ostatic.com/blog/wireshark-1-2-released-with-a-bundle-of-new-features Popular network protocol analyzer Wireshark released a major update recently that's chock full of new features. Wireshark 2.1.0 now has OpenStreetMap + GeoIP integration, a 64-bit Windows installer, improved support for Mac OS X, and more…”

18. Never reboot again with Linux and Ksplice http://blogs.computerworld.com/never_reboot_again_with_linux_and_ksplice I usually have to reboot my Linux systems about once every six months. Linux is as stable as a rock. Windows, while it's gotten better, is another story entirely. While I no longer need to reboot Windows on a daily basis, I still must reboot my Windows PC at least twice a month-one "what the heck was that" problem and Patch Tuesday. For some users, telecommunication server/carrier grade administrators in particular even twice-a-year reboots is twice a year too often and that's where Ksplice comes in. Ksplice, according to its developers, "enables running systems to stay secure without the disruption of re-booting. Specifically, Ksplice creates re-bootless updates that are based on traditional source code patches…”

SkyNet

19. Google Voice takes a step toward launch http://www.pcworld.com/article/167449/hands_on_with_google_voice_this_is_really_cool.html “…Google is opening up the service to a limited number of new users, many of whom I'm sure will be as impressed as I am with Google Voice's power and elegance. Even better, Google Voice is free -- at least for now…”

20. Google Wants You To Become A Gmail Ninja http://www.techcrunch.com/2009/06/23/googles-wants-you-to-become-a-gmail-ninja-or-look-like-a-huge-nerd/ “…Gmail is far and away the best online email management system out there right now. But a lot of people still use it like a regular email service, never touching some of its power-features that can really help with email overload. So Google launched a new Tips area of the site today to serve as a reference point for how to become what it calls a “Gmail Ninja.”…”

21. Google Tourism: City Tours Experiment http://searchengineland.com/google-city-tours-takes-on-tourism-21513 City Tours is a new addition to Google Labs that puts Google squarely in the tourism business: Give it a city name, and Google not only suggests sites to see, but it also maps out a multi-day itinerary and proposes a minute-by-minute travel schedule for you to follow. And what’s really impressive is that City Tours doesn’t only cover the standard travel hot spots like New York, San Francisco, and Las Vegas. You’ve probably never heard of Kennewick, Washington, but Google has a three-day tour in mind if you ever want to visit my neck of the woods…”

22. Google thought Michael Jackson traffic was attack http://news.cnet.com/8301-17939_109-10274137-2.html “…Google News was inaccessible for some people Thursday afternoon right as rumors of Jackson's death began to circulate, replaced by an error message reading "We're sorry, but your query looks similar to automated requests from a computer virus or spyware application. To protect our users, we can't process your request right now…The spike in queries began at about 2:45 p.m. PDT Thursday, and Google thought the traffic was an attack for about 25 minutes before realizing what was going on…”

23. WSJ publisher calls Google ‘digital vampire’ http://www.crainsnewyork.com/article/20090624/FREE/906249985 “…Dow Jones Chief Executive Les Hinton raised the rhetoric a notch, calling the Internet search giant a vampire “sucking the blood” out of the newspaper business, and promised that new developments would level the playing field…Newspaper publishers have been growing increasingly vocal about Google’s profiting from content it doesn’t produce, and have been searching for ways to begin charging for news stories that are now given away free on the Web. The Wall Street Journal has been one of the few major news organizations to successfully charge for access to its Web site…”

General Technology

24. Wind-Powered Drive-in Movie Theater http://www.treehugger.com/files/2009/05/wind-powered-movie-theater.php “…The Harvest Moon Twin Drive-in Theater takes to the forefront in new technologies by installing two residential wind turbines at the theater. The turbines, a Southwest Windpower Skystream 3.7 and a Mariah Power Windspire will provide the theater with approximately 30% of its energy needs this season and the possibility of 100% by the 2010 season. Both turbines sit in the front acreage of the drive-in theatre in perfect view of route 47 just outside the Gibson City limits. With this installation, the theater will be the first movie theater in the world to use wind power as an energy source…”

25. Tesla gets $465 million gov’t loan for its electric sedan http://www.techcrunch.com/2009/06/23/the-government-comes-through-for-tesla-with-a-465-million-loan-for-its-electric-sedan/ “…Tesla Motors, Silicon Valley’s electric car manufacturer, is receiving $465 million from the program. The money will go towards completing the development of its Modern S sedan and its electric power trains, which are being licensed by other car makers such as Mercedes. Last month, Mercedes’ parent company Daimler also invested $50 million for a 10 percent stake in Tesla…”

26. Microsoft wants your Hohm to use the smart grid http://arstechnica.com/microsoft/news/2009/06/microsoft-wants-your-hohm-to-use-the-smart-grid.ars “…Microsoft took the wraps off a new Web service dedicated to managing energy use. Called "Hohm" (presumably, a play on the combination of "home and "Ohm"), the product will take advantage of smart grid data on energy use when it's available. Even when it's not, however, Hohm will allow users to input their own details and share the results of their efficiency efforts, adding a bit of a Web 2.0 sheen to matters. The move comes after a number of other major IT powers, including Google and Cisco, have announced their own efforts in the area, suggesting that a lot of people think this market is about to take off…” [ http://www.reuters.com/article/earth2Tech/idUS148240668020090625 ]

27. $100 Laptop Becomes a $5 PC http://www.technologyreview.com/computing/22919/ The open-source education software developed for the "$100 laptop" can now be loaded onto a $5 USB stick to run aging PCs and Macs with a new interface and custom educational software. "What we are doing is taking a bunch of old machines that barely run Windows 2000, and turning them into something interesting and useful for essentially zero cost…”

28. Toyota thinks up mind-reading wheelchair http://news.cnet.com/8301-17938_105-10275267-1.html “…Toyota has developed the wheelchair in collaboration with researchers in Japan. The system analyzes brain wave data using signal-processing technology and delivers neuro-feedback to the driver…Toyota's mind-controlled wheelchair, however, has what appears to be the quickest response time yet: 125 milliseconds, or 125 thousandths of a second. The user can almost instantly steer right, left, and forward. To stop, the person in the chair must puff up a cheek, a motion that's then detected by the headpiece…”

Leisure & Entertainment

29. ZeniMax Media buys Id Software http://www.latimes.com/business/la-fi-id25-2009jun25,0,2375198.story Id Software, creator of the Doom, Wolfenstein 3D and Quake games, has been sold to ZeniMax Media for an undisclosed amount. ZeniMax's Bethesda Softworks studio created the popular Elder Scrolls series of role-playing games…Id will continue to operate as a studio under the direction of founder John Carmack. No changes will be made in the operations of Id's game development. All the Id principals have signed long-term employment contracts, ensuring that they will continue in their roles developing games at the studio…”

30. Cable Companies Want to Control Online TV http://www.readwriteweb.com/archives/cable_companies_want_to_control_online_tv.php “…Just as the newspaper industry doesn't know how to react to the new challenges posed by the Internet, the cable industry, too, is trying to remain relevant in a world where appointment TV is a thing of the past. This is due to the proliferation of DVRs where TV networks and producers can just put their content on the web and users can watch these shows on their TVs and in their living rooms thanks to cheap hardware devices from Apple and Roku, and software like Boxee. Currently, only a few households have abandoned their cable TV in favor of going online only, but this number is probably growing and looking forward. The cable industry is surely seeing this as a threat---the real test here is not whether the cable companies can deliver online TV over their networks, but whether they can figure out a good way to 'authenticate' households that have a cable subscription…”

Economy and Technology

31. Blue Nile joins Amazon in cutting ties with North Carolina affiliates http://www.techflash.com/Blue_Nile_49460322.html Amazon.com isn't the only ecommerce company cutting ties to affiliates over state sales tax legislation. Online diamond and jewelry retailer Blue Nile has ended its North Carolina affiliate program over pending legislation there…Amazon and Blue Nile are seeking to avoid efforts by states to classify them as a physical retailer -- and require them to pay sales tax -- through their relationship to locally-based affiliate websites…” [ http://www.xconomy.com/boston/2009/06/29/amazon-pulls-the-plug-on-rhode-island-affiliates/ ]

32. Acer’s Everywhere. How Did That Happen? http://www.nytimes.com/2009/06/28/technology/companies/28acer.html “…This year, Acer appears poised to overtake Dell as the world’s second-largest seller of personal computers, which would put a real dent into one of America’s favorite dorm-to-empire business stories. And if this comes to pass, Acer would trail only Hewlett-Packard; no computer company based outside the United States has ever climbed so high…Giants like Foxconn and Quanta have turned this island into a manufacturing hub, producing most of the music players, video game consoles, cellphones and computers bought by consumers and businesses. But the companies that sell these products — H.P., Dell, Apple and others — have put immense pressure on these manufacturers to keep prices low…”

33. Jobs back at Apple after 5 1/2-month leave http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2009/06/30/BU0018FQK2.DTL “…Jobs, 54, is still in recovery after a liver transplant in Memphis. Apple representatives said he will split his time between work and home for now…Jobs stepped away in mid-January after he reported that his health issues were more complex than first imagined. Nine days earlier, he had attributed weight loss to a hormonal imbalance…Jobs underwent treatment in 2004 for a rare form of pancreatic cancer, which some medical observers had feared may have spread to Jobs' liver, prompting the transplant…the company fared well in the hands of Chief Operating Officer Tim Cook, who handled day-to-day operations in Jobs' absence. Apple's stock has jumped 67 percent since Jobs stepped away. The company's revenue and profit in the first quarter of this year grew despite a tough economy that has slowed competitors…”

34. MagicJack Will Top $100 Million In Sales This Year http://www.businessinsider.com/magicjack-will-top-100-million-in-sales-this-year-2009-6 “…MagicJack, the super-cheap Internet phone gadget, is flying off the shelves. And parent company YMax Communications, founded by telecom veteran Daniel Borislow, is raking in big money…The company is selling about 9,000 to 10,000 MagicJacks a day, according to Borislow, and customers are using about 500 million minutes a month…”

Civilian Aerospace

35. SpacePort Indiana: Real Launches, Real Space Data, Real Time http://www.midwestbusiness.com/news/viewnews.asp?newsletterID=19684 “…SpacePort Indiana (SPI) expects to complete more than 130 rocket and high-altitude balloon launches during 2009, according to SPI CEO Brian Tanner…He opened SPI in March 2008. The space company also is working with Raytheon to develop a 3-D infrastructure to track high-altitude aircraft and spacecraft for the FAA in preparation for what Tanner calls “the new era of commercialization in space…Aside from the high-altitude balloons, how big are the rockets actually being launched out of Columbus? Tanned said: “We launch rockets in the ‘sounding’ class that are generally 15 to 20 feet tall and eight to 11 inches in diameter.” These rockets carry commercial payloads that transmit data to ground stations in the region. He added: “Our engineering staff builds rockets here and uses rockets and rocket engines supplied by customers. The rockets supplied by customers tend to be design platforms that are evaluating a proprietary technology…”

36. SpaceX raising another $60M http://deals.venturebeat.com/2009/06/29/spacex-raising-another-60m-for-private-space-travel/ “…SpaceX, has raised $15 million of a new funding round…The round may eventually grow to $60 million…aerospace companies and public agencies are hiring SpaceX to deliver satellites into orbit — for example, it’s scheduled to launch a Malaysian satellite in July. SpaceX’s press materials also say it plans to deliver cargo back-and-forth from Low Earth orbit (such as resupplying the International Space Station) starting next year…”

37. Skies not the limit for Canadian space elevator proponent http://www.canada.com/Skies+limit+Canadian+space+elevator+proponent/1725198/story.html “…A Canadian technology company has a futuristic idea: a free-standing elevator that stops 20 kilometres above the Earth, is capable of launching satellites into space and could be used for communications networks around the world…The space elevator concept is being commercialized by Thoth Technologies Inc. , a Canadian company led by St. John's, N.L. native Caroline Roberts and her husband, Brendan Quine, an associate professor at Toronto's York University…”

38. Backup Space Tourist Begins Training http://www.space.com/missionlaunches/090626-backup-space-tourist-barrett.html “…American attorney Barbara Barrett is training as a backup crew member for a Russian Soyuz flight slated to deliver Cirque de Soleil founder Guy Laliberte to the International Space Station for a 12-day stay this fall, according to Space Adventures Ltd., the Vienna, Va.-based firm that organized the training and flight…An aviation attorney who became the FAA's first female deputy in 1988, Barrett is an instrument-rated pilot and has served on the boards of a number of aerospace companies, including Raytheon, the Space Foundation and The Aerospace Corp…”

39. Geeks in Space http://www.thebigmoney.com/articles/judgments/2009/06/24/geeks-space “…Richard Garriott is a geek. He loves fantasy; he has two thin braids running down his back that, for pictures, he swings over onto his chest for maximum effect. Back in the 1980s, he developed a series of fantasy role-playing video games under the Ultima umbrella, making him, perhaps, the Henry Ford of gaming…because Garriott is a geek, he has also used his millions to pursue his love of space. In 2000, he shelled out hundreds of thousands of dollars to be the very first self-funded tourist in space. But then the dot-com bubble burst, and he lost most of his money and had to sell his seat on the rocket. But Garriott loves space so much that, once he regained his financial footing, he decided to buy back that trip rather than resume construction on the still half-finished Britannia Manor Mark 3, the other casualty of the bust…He says he has also noticed a pattern: All those other tech geeks thirsting for the same view. For instance, when Garriott finally went up, in October of last year, he was already Space Tourist No. 6. But Nos. 1 through 5 were all tech geeks, too…”

40. More WhiteKnight Two testing details after Oshkosh http://www.flightglobal.com/articles/2009/06/26/328834/more-whiteknight-two-testing-details-after-oshkosh.html “…Details of future WhiteKnight Two testing and an evaluation of its Pratt & Whitney Canada 308A engines should emerge after July's Experimental Aircraft Association AirVenture air show in Oshkosh, Wisconsin. Virgin Galactic's prototype mothership, named Eve, will make its public debut at Oshkosh on 27 July…”

41. Space Frontier Foundation's Heinlein Business Plan Competition http://www.spaceref.com/news/viewpr.html?pid=28615 “…These companies will not only compete for the $5000 prize courtesy of the Heinlein Foundation, but also the opportunity to present their business plan to dedicated space investors at Space Investment Summit 7 and an invitation to Aerospace Venture Forum hosted by the Space Angels Network. To prepare for the final competition, the businesses will participate in preparatory workshops and will present their business plans at practice sessions on Saturday, July 18th. The final presentations will take place Sunday morning as part of The Business of NewSpace Day…”

42. German Team Enters Google Lunar X PRIZE Competition http://www.webwire.com/ViewPressRel.asp?aId=97953 “…Team Part-Time-Scientists, headquartered in Berlin, Germany has seven team members and is among 19 teams from 42 countries that are competing for their share of the multi-million dollar prize purse. The Part-Time-Scientists are not only the first German team to join the competition but also one of the youngest as the vast majority of team members are in the 20’s. In addition, this is the first team made up entirely of non-space professionals. The seven members are scattered across northern Germany and welcome everyone who wants to join their efforts…”

Supercomputing & GPUs

43. AMD to support Nvidia's CUDA technology? http://www.techradar.com/news/computing-components/graphics-cards/amd-to-support-nvidia-s-cuda-technology--612041 Nvidia has hinted that it has a project in the works that will enable Nvidia's CUDA technology on AMD GPUs…In the future you'll be able to run C with CUDA extensions on a broader range of platforms," stated Dally, "so I don't think that will be a fundamental limitation." Although Dally didn't name AMD outright, he added: "I'm familiar with some projects that are underway to enable CUDA on other platforms." While both Nvidia and AMD have announced support for open GPGPU standards such as OpenCL and Microsoft's DirectX Compute, both companies also have their own GPGPU technologies… OpenCL is really a driver interface. It's an API and a set of calls. With a kernel, you basically make an API call with the code for that kernel as a string, and the compilation actually happens in the driver on the fly. "Being able to write in C for CUDA and running NVCC and pre-compiling your kernel seems to be a more efficient way of operating…”

44. University of Delaware GPU supercomputer http://www.prweb.com/releases/2009/06/prweb2592404.htm “…University of Delaware Global Computing Laboratory has deployed the university's largest supercomputer, code-named "Geronimo", based on a custom GPGPU design utilizing NVIDIA Tesla GPU computing technology coupled with Intel 5400 series processors. The cluster, funded by the University in conjunction with the NVIDIA University Partnership Program, will be used to support the research goals of the Global Computing Laboratory headed by Assistant Professor Michela Taufer. The University of Delaware's team including Dr. Taufer and key collaborators Dr. Sandeep Patel from the Chemistry Department and Dr. Dionisios G. Vlachos from the Chemical Engineering Department is targeting the enhanced performance of large-scale simulations of molecular systems based on Monte Carlo (MC) and Molecular Dynamics (MD) methods…”

45. Numerical Precision: How Much is Enough? http://www.scientificcomputing.com/article-hpc-Numerical-Precision-How-Much-is-Enough-063009.aspx The advent of petascale computers and teraflop-per-board graphics processors has raised the question of "how do we know that anything we compute is correct?" Numerical errors can quickly accumulate when performing a trillion to thousands of trillions of floating-point operations per second due to approximations, rounding, truncation errors and other concerns…While not many people will gain access to a petascale supercomputer in the next few years, GPU computing is becoming ever more ubiquitous. NVIDIA states they now have an installed base of over 100 million CUDA-capable graphics processors. With teraflop-per-board capability, graphics processors have dramatically increased the computational capabilities available for scientific calculations — and at a commodity price-point…Numerical accuracy is one of those opaque areas of scientific computing that people try to solve by using the hammer of 64-bit arithmetic to fix the problem. Generally, the problem is caused by thinking that more bits of precision are better and acknowledging that, unfortunately, any number of bits of precision is never really quite enough…”

46. Video Game Tools Used For Defense Needs http://www.huliq.com/11/82678/video-game-tools-used-defense-needs Video gaming computers and video game consoles available today typically contain a graphics processing unit (GPU), which is very efficient at manipulating and displaying computer graphics. However, the unit's highly parallel structure also makes it more efficient than a general-purpose central processing unit for a range of complex calculations important to defense applications…As radar systems and other sensor systems get more complicated, the computational requirements are becoming a bottleneck," said GTRI senior research engineer Daniel Campbell. "We are capitalizing on the ability of GPUs to process radar, infrared sensor and video data faster than a typical computer and at a much lower cost and power than a computing cluster…”


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