2011/02/22

NEW NET Weekly List for 22 Feb 2011

Below is the final list of issues for the Wednesday, 22 February 2011, NEW NET (Northeast Wisconsin Network for Economy and Technology) 7:00 - 9:00 pm weekly gathering. This week's meeting is at Cambria Suites Hotel, 3940 N. Gateway Drive, Appleton Wisconsin, USA near Ballard Road and Highway 41. Cambria Suites has free wifi and has an assortment of food and beverages.

The ‘net

1. Cooliris’ new LiveShare app refocuses on photo-sharing http://venturebeat.com/2011/02/14/cooliris-liveshare/ Palo Alto startup Cooliris has built its reputation by creating a slick experience for browsing photos, videos, and other media, but now it’s making the famous Silicon Valley “pivot” with a new mobile and Web application called LiveShare…the LiveShare app tackles a common problem with photo-sharing: trying to control who sees the photo…you aren’t limited to either sharing photos with everyone or with a preset group of friends. Instead, for each set of photos you determine who gets access. Then the people you’ve invited can look at your photos and add pictures of their own…You could create LiveShare streams around one-time events like conferences or parties, or you could use a stream to continually share photos with a small group of people, like your immediate family. Cooliris is one of a number of high-profile startups that have jumped on the mobile photo-sharing bandwagon in the past few months…Apps like Instagram…and Picplz focus on allowing you to share your pictures with everyone. Path emphasizes creating a small group of connections that you share everything with…”

2. Looking to Get Out of Jury Duty? Be a Social Media Dimwit http://www.marketingpilgrim.com/2011/02/looking-to-get-out-of-jury-duty-be-a-social-media-dimwit.html “…One area that is getting more aggressive in its use of social media channels is the law. It is already fairly well known that divorce lawyers are using social media outlets to catch opposing spouses in compromising social media positions. Now lawyers are turning to social media to help clean up the jury pool before they go to trial…Prosecution and defense lawyers are scouring the site for personal details about members of the jury pool that could signal which side they might sympathize with during a trial…”

3. 5 tips for using Blogger on your Android phone http://googlemobile.blogspot.com/2011/02/5-tips-for-using-blogger-on-your.html “…we announced the first version of the Blogger app for Android…we’d like to share some tips on how you can use the Blogger app to quickly publish posts when you’re on the go…1. Attach photos as you compose…2. Include your current location…3. Share to Blogger…4. Switch across multiple Blogger accounts…5. Keep track of published posts and saved drafts…”

Security, Privacy & Digital Controls

4. Social Engineering: 3 Examples of Human Hacking http://www.pcworld.com/businesscenter/article/219196/social_engineering_3_examples_of_human_hacking.html Chris Hadnagy…co-founder of social-engineering.org and author of Social Engineering: The Art of Human Hacking…has been using manipulation tactics for more than a decade…Hadnagy outlines how he was hired as an SE auditor…of a printing company which had some proprietary processes and vendors that competitors were after…the CEO informed him that "hacking him would be next to impossible" because he "guarded his secrets with his life."…Hadnagy found the locations of servers, IP addresses, email addresses, phone numbers, physical addresses, mail servers, employee names and titles…the real prize of knowledge came when Hadnagy managed to learn the CEO had a family member that had battled cancer, and…was interested and involved in cancer fundraising and research. Through Facebook, he was also able to get other personal details…such as his favorite restaurant and sports team…He called the CEO and posed as a fundraiser from a cancer charity the CEO had dealt with…offering a prize drawing…included tickets to a game played by his favorite sports team…gift certificates to several restaurants, including his favorite spot. The CEO bit, and agreed to let Hadnagy send him a PDF with more information on the fund drive…Soon after he sent the PDF, the CEO opened it, installing a shell that allowed Hadnagy to access his machine. When Hadnagy…reported back to the company…the CEO was…angry, said Hadnagy. "He felt it was unfair we used something like that…next case study was a theme park client that was concerned about potential compromise of its ticketing system…Hadnagy started his test by calling the park, posing as a software salesperson…offering a new type of PDF-reading software…Heading up to one of the ticket windows with his wife and child in tow, he asked one of the employees if they might use their computer to open a file from his email. The email contained a pdf attachment for a coupon that would give them discount admission…The employee agreed, and the park's computer system was quickly compromised by Hadnagy's bad PDF…a third example…profiles 'John,' a penetration tester…He ran scan using Metasploit, which revealed an open VNC (virtual network computing) server, a server that allows control of other machines on the network…suddenly, in the background, a mouse began to move across the screen…Taking a chance, John opened Notepad and began chatting with the intruder, posing as a 'n00b' hacker…John asked the hacker several questions, pretending to be a younger person who wanted to learn some tricks of the hacking trade and who wanted to keep in touch…By the time the chat was over, he had the intruder's email, contact information--and even a picture of him…the hacker had not really been 'targeting' the company who he had hacked, he had just been out looking around for something easy to compromise and found that open system quite easily…”

5. 7 Ways to Avoid Getting Your Network Hacked http://www.pcworld.com/businesscenter/article/219989/7_ways_to_avoid_getting_hacked_by_anonymous.html “…Anonymous used a series of simple technical and social exploits to crack the network of security-technology firm HBGary Federal…HBGary Federal ran afoul of Anonymous when CEO Aaron Barr said he planned to name members of the secretive international group that famously came to the defense of WikiLeaks…Here are seven lessons to learn…1. Don't assume what type of attack you will suffer. Barr thought Anonymous would only launch a DDoS attack against the company's Web site…2. Use a tried and tested content management system that comes with updates, patches and support. HBGary used a custom CMS for its Web site that was susceptible to SQL injection attacks…3. Thoroughly hash and rehash passwords stored in databases. HBGary did hash its passwords, but didn't add extra characters that have to be removed to reveal the actual password. Nor did it rehash the hashed passwords…4. Use strong passwords…Two key HBGary Federal executives used simple eight-character passwords -- two numbers and six letters. Rainbow tables worked on them…5. Don't reuse passwords….HBGary executives used the same passwords for access to the company's CRM system as they did for its Google Apps e-mail…cracked passwords…for the company's e-mail administrator's Google account…led to all the company's e-mails being hacked…6. Keep current with patches…7. Heighten user awareness of social engineering…e-mails from the hacked account of HBGary founder Greg Hoglund to a network administrator requesting key information…the admin opened firewall ports and gave up Hoglund's user name and password for root access to the servers…”

6. LinkedIn Revamps Security and Privacy Options http://www.pcworld.com/businesscenter/article/220042/linkedin_revamps_security_and_privacy_options_your_guide.html LinkedIn is rolling out an entirely redesigned privacy and security settings page aimed at helping users find important information quicker and navigate controls easier…While the interface is different, it's important to note that no member settings or defaults have been changed with this design update…The top half of the page highlights information about you and your account. You can view how long you've been a LinkedIn member, change your primary e-mail or password and upgrade to a paid account…Below that are the majority of your LinkedIn account and privacy settings, including ones associated with your profile; e-mail preferences; groups, companies and applications; and account…”

Mobile Computing & Communicating

7. 5 Ways Mobile Will Transform Commerce http://mashable.com/2011/02/18/mobile-trends-commerce/ “…How will that change your life if, instead of reaching into your wallet or purse to whip out a credit card, you instead wave or tap your mobile? Here are a few thoughts on how this shift will change the way you shop…1. It Will Make You a More Fascinating Customer…Let’s say your current weakness is Mexican food…if you find yourself driving past a new taco joint on Main Street, you might get a mobile notification inviting you to lunch with a half-off coupon…companies involved in the system…will want to make sure you’ve opted in to the system. In exchange…you’ll be getting…discounts on food and merchandise…2. Shopping Will Become Even More Social…imagine if a critical mass of shoppers within a certain range of a store could trigger a bargain…a coffee shop could offer a mobile coupon to someone who checked into its competitor just down the street…This transition will stretch the bounds of what we believe is acceptable for third parties to know about us…it comes down to what you get in return…3. It Makes Brick-and-Mortar Digital…When you’re in Best Buy wondering if that’s the best price you’re going to find on an Xbox Kinect, and you scan the barcode with your smartphone, it pulls up a list of online sites offering the same product for a little less…Things become even more interesting when retailers begin to use the phone to bring you to their physical space…roving gourmet catering trucks…tweet not only their menu specials but their location to customers every day, so diners know where to find them and what to expect when they arrive…Square and Intuit’s target audience includes very small vendors — farmers markets, house cleaners, the Etsy crowd — who may not want to fork out for full fledged credit card processing systems…4. Attackers and Incumbents Will Tussle…One of the most striking examples in the mobile industry been the recent dethroning of Nokia as the world’s most popular mobile platform…The playing field had shifted from practical functionality to phones with apps that can do fun things…Apple, Google, and Paypal…will begin to take more and more of the transaction pie from current transaction leaders Visa, MasterCard, and the banks…telecoms like Verizon, AT&T, Vodafone, Telefonica and T-mobile will all want their cut of mobile commerce pie…5. Your Mobile Phone Will Become Your Identity…With all this personal data and financial transaction history, it becomes pointless to argue that your mobile number isn’t as much a proxy for your identity as, say your social security number or driver’s license is…your mobile-financial identity is certain to be more representative of who you really are…Given how important the paying mobile phone will become, we’ll want to ramp up the security on it. Passcodes to unlock, methods to find, and systems to “blow up” the data in mobile devices are already in place. Deeper levels of security are not far behind, including biometric recognition…and…multiple levels of scrutiny – for example, your password, location, and some private bit of data…work is underway into voice recognition and “gait analysis,” the ability to acquaint your phone with the way you walk so that if someone else tries to walk away with it, the device locks up…”

8. Developer's sales suggest Verizon iPhone selling to existing iOS users http://www.appleinsider.com/articles/11/02/21/developers_sales_suggest_verizon_iphone_selling_to_existing_ios_users.html One prominent App Store developer has found the launch of the Verizon iPhone earlier this month had no discernible effect on software sales, while other events like launches and the holidays caused "huge spikes,"…Marco Arment of the popular Instapaper application…noted this week that rankings for his software are usually relatively steady, but sales can vary -- particularly when an iPhone-related event occurs…Since the Verizon iPhone 4 launched on Feb. 10, Arment's application has seen no major change in sales…his ranks on the App Store have been nearly constant, as have overall sales…Arment offers three potential theories on launch sales of the Verizon iPhone 4. First, he says it's possible that very few Verizon iPhones have been sold, a suggestion he calls unlikely. Second, he said it's possible that Verizon iPhone owners aren't buying many applications, which he also considers unlikely. Finally, Arment suggested that most Verizon iPhones have been sold to existing iPhone or iPod touch users…could already own most or all of the App Store software they would be interested in…The developer said he believes most buyers of the Verizon iPhone 4 are casual users, with "different priorities" than Apple enthusiasts…”

9. Mobile Ecosystem Slowly Grows Around Home Energy http://gigaom.com/cleantech/a-mobile-ecosystem-slowly-grows-around-home-energy/ “…2011 or 2012 may be the tipping point — and the smartphone or tablet may be the controller that allows you to coordinate your thermostat with your life…Texas Instruments announced…a new Android software platform to help mobile developers create mobile devices with ZigBee connectivity. ZigBee is the dominant standards-based way to connect devices in the home, but to date, it’s mostly been embraced by the power industry and utilities, instead of consumer electronics makers…The slow embrace of ZigBee by gadget and mobile phone makers has made room for the proprietary home wireless standard Z-wave, which basically uses chips made by one vendor: Sigma Designs, which acquired Z-Wave chipmaker Zensys in 2008. Both Verizon and Motorola have turned to Z-Wave as the first communications technology for their inaugural smart home efforts…I expect ZigBee, which is an open standard, to surpass Z-Wave, a proprietary standard, in the home…Both the smart energy home and the greater smart grid sector have been looking to recruit mobile developers lately…”

10. Motorola Xoom http://www.pcworld.com/article/220345/motorola_xoom_to_buy_or_not_to_buy.html “…The Xoom will launch this Thursday, February 24…The 3G/4G tablet will be available for $800 at Best Buy and Verizon Wireless stores. You can also get the gadget for $600 through Verizon, if you're willing to sign a two-year contract for mobile data service (plans start at $20 a month). The one thing missing from the equation: the Wi-Fi-only edition of the Xoom, which Motorola CEO Sanjay Jha has said will cost about $600 off-contract…”

Open Source

11. Eye Candy with Compiz on the Linux Desktop http://www.linux.com/learn/tutorials/410063-embrace-eye-candy-with-compiz-on-the-linux-desktop “…Using Compiz you can enable all sorts of fantastic desktop effects and attractive themes…Before you can install Compiz…make sure you have the hardware that will power compositing…most modern desktop machines should be powerful enough to use Compiz…installation is as simple as using your Add/Remove Software tool — if it's not already installed by default…There are "specialty" distributions out there that focus on Compiz integration. One of my favorites is Elive which integrates the Enlightenment E17 window manager with Compiz…If you want to see how far Compiz can push the boundaries of the typical desktop, you should download a live version of Elive and run it on your machine…The Compiz Cube is another way of managing multiple workspaces in Linux. The biggest difference between this method and other methods is that The Cube takes a more 3 Dimensional approach to the task, creating a 3D cube where each of the sides of the cube (excluding top and bottom) becomes a workspace…think of Compiz not as Bloatware, but as Gloatware…Can Windows do the things Compiz does? No. Can OS X? No. Compiz offers the Linux desktop just one more cool feature that no other operating system has…Emerald is a custom window decorator that allows the extension of effects to seep into the window decorations of your desktop…Now that Compiz is no longer Compiz Fusion, Emerald is no longer shipped with the compositor. So, in order to have this stellar decorator, you have to install it yourself…”

12. Electric CAD program on Linux http://www.ghacks.net/2011/02/17/electric-cad-program-on-linux/ If you are an electrical engineer, or someone who likes to dabble in designing electrical circuit boards (or anything with regards to electricity) and you’re looking for a FOSS (Free, Open Source Software) CAD program to aid you in the process, then Electric might be the solution. Although it doesn’t have the most modern looking GUI…Electric offers a lot of features and will serve you well in your designs…you need to be familiar with the science and art of electrical engineering to make full use of this application. But even a newbie can tell this tool has a lot to offer…”

13. Microsoft Releasing Kinect SDK http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,2817,2380698,00.asp Microsoft announced Monday that it will release a non-commercial SDK for the Kinect, allowing developers to create new uses for the motion-based system beyond gaming. "The community that has blossomed since the launch of Kinect for Xbox 360 in November shows the breadth of invention and depth of imagination possible when people have access to ground-breaking technology," Steve Clayton, director of cloud strategy at Microsoft, wrote in a blog post. "Already, researchers, academics and enthusiasts are thinking through what's next in natural and intuitive technology…[It] will give academic researchers and enthusiasts access to key pieces of the Kinect system—such as the audio technology, system application programming interfaces and direct control of the Kinect sensor itself," Clayton wrote…In the wake of Kinect's November release, a number of hackers went to work on the device, much to Microsoft's chagrin. Adafruit Industries announced a $2,000 prize for anyone who managed to hack into the Kinect so that it could be used with hardware other than the Xbox 360. Google's Matt Cutts then promised two $1,000 rewards for, "the person or team that writes the coolest open-source app, demo, or program using the Kinect," as well as the person or team who does the best job of simplifying the process of writing Kinect-driven Linux applications. What was Redmond's response? "Microsoft does not condone the modification of its products," the company said at the time. Microsoft later denied that anyone had actually "hacked" the Kinect, arguing that "someone wrote an open-source driver for PCs that essentially opens the USB connection - which we didn't protect, by design - and reads the inputs from the sensor…”

SkyNet

14. Google One Pass In-App Payment and Publishing System http://techcrunch.com/2011/02/16/powered-by-google-checkout-one-pass-is-a-simple-payment-system-for-content-publishers/ “…the search giant is finally unveiling One-Pass, a Google Checkout-powered service that lets publishers set their own prices and terms for their digital content…Google says that publishers have the flexibility to charge for a variety of models including, subscriptions, day passes, metered access, pay-per-article, multi-issue packages and more…Readers who purchase from a One Pass publisher can access their content on tablets, smartphones and websites using a single sign-on with an email and password…One Pass offers payments in mobile apps (i.e. in Android apps), in instances where the mobile OS terms permit transactions to take place outside of the app market (which seems to be a direct hit at Apple’s subscription announcement yesterday)…Clearly, this format will compete with Apple’s subscription model, as well as PayPal, which launched its own micropayments product recently. Details are still vague, but One Pass does seem to be more publisher friendly that Apple’s subscription product. And this could be a big boost for Google’s own payments product—Checkout…” http://techcrunch.com/2011/02/16/google-one-pass-apple/ “…for One Pass…customer information collected by Google will be shared with publishers. What kind of information? Name, zip code, and most importantly, email addresses. Billing information will not be shared, we’re told. Users can choose to opt-out of sharing this information, but they’ll have to explicitly do so…that’s a huge win for publishers who mainly fear these online subscription services because it could mean giving up their all-important rolodex of customer information…With Google’s system, they’ll be able to maintain at least part of that direct relationship…with Apple’s system, publishers are getting the shaft…user data can be shared with publishers — but only if the users themselves explicitly choose to share it…basically no one is going to share such information…”

15. 12 new file formats in the Google Docs Viewer http://gmailblog.blogspot.com/2011/02/12-new-file-formats-in-google-docs.html “…Not only is viewing files in your browser far more secure than downloading and opening them locally, but it also saves time and doesn’t clutter up your hard-drive with unwanted files. Today we…launch support for 12 new file types: Microsoft Excel (.XLS and .XLSX)…Microsoft PowerPoint 2007 / 2010 (.PPTX)…Apple Pages (.PAGES)…Adobe Illustrator (.AI)…Adobe Photoshop (.PSD)…Autodesk AutoCad (.DXF)…Scalable Vector Graphics (.SVG)…PostScript (.EPS, .PS)…TrueType (.TTF)…XML Paper Specification (.XPS)…Not only does this round out support for the major Microsoft Office file types (we now support DOC, DOCX, PPT, PPTX, XLS and XLSX), but it also adds quick viewing capabilities for many of the most popular and highly-requested document and image types…”

16. Google Social Search changes

General Technology

17. Navy Breaks World Record With Futuristic Free-Electron Laser http://www.foxnews.com/scitech/2011/02/18/navy-breaks-world-record-futuristic-laser-getting-real/ The Navy just set a new world record, a test blast from a new type of laser that can shoot cruise missiles from the sky in seconds with a deadly accuracy that simply doesn't exist in the military’s vast arsenal today…FoxNews.com saw scientists blast unprecedented levels of power into a prototype accelerator, producing a supercharged electron beam that can burn through 20 feet of steel per second…The Navy just awarded Boeing a contract worth up to $163 million to take that technology and package it as a 100 kW weapons system…“We’re fast approaching the limits of our ability to hit maneuvering pieces of metal in the sky with other piece of flying metal,” explained Rear Admiral Nevin P. Carr Jr…The military now uses solid-state lasers that use crystals and glass, as well as chemical lasers that use often dangerous liquid materials. The FEL is different. It requires only electrons, which can be created from matter inside the injector with energy that is constantly recycled. In other words, it uses less shipboard power than current weapons systems…the FEL laser can perform at different wavelengths, meaning it can operate at lower and more powerful levels so that it can be used for different applications, which other laser technology cannot. It is also not vulnerable to atmospheric conditions, as solid-state lasers are…“The fact that you can tune the wavelength, that’s what makes it different. You can optimize the beam for the conditions of the day -- that’s really powerful,” said Adm. Carr…”

18. IBM “Jeopardy” Challenge Day 2: Very Different From Day One http://newenterprise.allthingsd.com/20110215/ibm-jeopardy-challenge-day-2-very-different-from-day-one/ “…the supercomputer Watson in a match of the uniquely human game of “Jeopardy.”…was winning raves for holding its own against the game’s best human players. Day two was very different. Watson dominated, winning nearly every buzzer and answering nearly every “Jeopardy” clue put to it, correctly. The first segment was all Watson, and it would be like that all night…At another point, when asked a question about items stolen from a museum in a certain city in 2003, Watson had only 32 percent confidence in what it thought was the best answer, which was Baghdad. It said, “I’m going to guess,” before giving the right answer. By the end of the second segment, Watson’s lead was bordering on the ridiculous–$36,881, to $5,400 for Rutter and $2,400 for Jennings…” http://asmarterplanet.com/blog/2011/02/watson-on-jeopardy-day-two-the-confusion-over-an-airport-clue.html “…Watson beat the human champions in the first game of the Jeopardy! face off between man and machine, with a score of $35,734 to $10,400 for Brad Rutter and $4,800 for Ken Jennings. But Watson’s developers were puzzled by his flub in the Final Jeopardy! segment. The category was US Cities, and the answer was: “Its largest airport was named for a World War II hero; its second largest, for a World War II battle.” The two human contestants wrote “What is Chicago?” for its O’Hare and Midway, but Watson’s response was a lame “What is Toronto???”…Watson, in his training phase, learned that categories only weakly suggest the kind of answer that is expected, and, therefore, the machine downgrades their significance…Adding to the confusion for Watson, there are cities named Toronto in the United States and the Toronto in Canada has an American League baseball team…Watson knew it did not know that right answer with any confidence. Its confidence level was about 30%. So it was right about that…Think about how Watson could be used in medicine, as a diagnostic aid. A patient may describe to a doctor a certain symptom or a high level of pain, which, on the surface, may seem to be an important clue to the cause of the ailment. But Watson may know from looking at a lot of data that that symptom or pain isn’t the key piece of evidence, and could alert the doctor to be aware of other factors…Another encouraging sign: Watson bet intelligently, just $947…”

19. Intel’s new Itanium is the Moby Dick of microprocessors http://venturebeat.com/2011/02/19/intels-new-itanium-is-the-moby-dick-of-microprocessors/ “…Intel is announcing today the 10th generation of its Itanium chip, which is a 64-bit microprocessor…with more than 3 billion basic components known as transistors…Itanium…biggest competition remains…32-bit Xeon family of server chips, which are made in very high volumes…The chip has eight computing cores, or brains, and can issue 12 instructions at a time, compared to four cores and 6 instructions for the previous generation. Poulson has 54 megabytes of cache memory directly on the chip…The chip is built with Intel’s 32-nanometer manufacturing process, compared to 65-nm for Tukwila…While Poulson has 3.1 billion transistors, Tukwila had 2 billion transistors. Power efficiency is anywhere from 30 to 70 percent better for Poulson. Intel remains committed to Itanium, as it is working on another design code-named Kittson, which will ship after Poulson…”

DHMN Technology

20. MakerBot Just Invented A New Motor To Make 3D Printing Better http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/g/a/2011/02/16/businessinsider-makerbot-2011-2.DTL Brooklyn startup MakerBot Industries just introduced something really cool. It's a new part for its 3D printers, a "stepper motor-driven extruder that can turn at a consistent rate." That esoteric sounding gizmo did not exist until MakerBot spent five months building it from scratch. MakerBot needed the motor to do more detailed printing…MakerBot…cofounder Bre Pettis and crew have aimed to make a once expensive and exclusive machine available to nearly anyone, effectively democratizing manufacturing…we can print out a bottle opener, a whistle, a new doorknob. We needed a doorstop yesterday, so we printed one out. Rather than…buy something that's been manufactured overseas and put on a boat and brought to a store on a truck, you can go to your living room." MakerBot sold its first 20 units in two weeks, something it originally thought would take two months. As of this morning it has sold over 3,800 printers…From their online store, MakerBot also sells various upgrades for their printers, a 3D scanner kit, ABS plastic used in 3D printing, and even assorted open source hardware like the Arduino…”

21. Little Brother?: Kids In California School Tracked By GPS If They Cut Class http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/g/a/2011/02/18/businessinsider-kids-in-california-school-tracked-by-gps-if-they-cut-class-2011-2.DTL Officials…in southern California are taking a new technological approach to cutting high school truancy: GPS devices…students in seventh or eighth grade who cut class more than a few times can avoid "continuation school" or juvenile prosecution by agreeing to carry a handheld GPS device the size of a cell phone. Then, at critical times of day where they might skip out -- like on the way to school and at lunch -- they are supposed to enter a code that tells officials where they are….Kids also get other help, like an adult coach and phone calls waking them up for school…The approach has been tried elsewhere, like Baltimore and San Antonio, with some success…”

22. Nose breath-controlled cyborg camera mask is wicked to the core http://dvice.com/archives/2011/02/nose-breath-con.php For his wife's art opening/masquerade party, Ryan Sturmer didn't want to get a paper Phantom of the Opera mask. Instead, he made his own functional cyborg mask, complete with a scary Terminator-esque glowing red LED for an eye. Did we mention that the eyepiece is nose breath-controlled?...the mask's retractable camera eye is controlled by your nose breath. A thermistor attached on the side of the mask detects changes in temperature based on breathing patterns, treating it as a signal to trigger the camera eye…”

23. The Secret World of Printing Concept Cars in 3-D http://www.wired.com/autopia/2011/02/the-secret-world-of-printing-concept-cars-in-3d/ “…Ask anyone involved exactly which companies use 3-D printing technology to create concepts and the answer will invariably be, “many of them.”…the folks over at I.materialise built parts of a concept car for Citroën based on the GT supercar from the Gran Turismo 5 video game…Most people don’t even realize that the parts and panels of concept cars gracing turntables from Los Angeles to Geneva are often the work of a 3-D printer…The actual process involves just as much art as science…These production people are artists and in some cases spend hours sanding down particular parts by hand. Because each part is unique they have to have a thorough understanding of 3-D printing and understand what the customer wants.”…For the GT, resin pieces were coated with copper and nickel. As a test, I.materialise also printed and plated a grille that’s traveled over 7,500 miles on the front of a car. One staffer even printed an out-of-production part for his own personal car…”

Leisure & Entertainment

24. Kindle e-book piracy accelerates http://reviews.cnet.com/8301-18438_7-20033437-82.html “…recently I popped open an alert to learn that my book was being pirated--both as a separate file and part of two larger Torrents called 2,500 Retail Quality Ebooks (iPod, iPad, Nook, Sony Reader) and 2,500 Retail Quality Ebooks for Kindle (MOBI). I had the strange reaction of being both dismayed and weirdly honored that someone had selected my book to strip free of its copy-protection (DRM) and include as part of a collection of "quality" e-books…for a moment I wasn't too bothered…if someone downloads 2500 books, what are the odds he or she is going to even bother looking at yours? I was probably only losing a few bucks…Even if I missed out on selling 200 e-books, that's a mere $100…for big authors, this whole pirating thing presents a bigger problem--and a bigger loss. But that isn't what dismayed me so much…E-books are small files and 2,500 of them can be packed into a single download (Torrent) that's only about 3.4GB. If you set the average price per book at a measly $2, the worth of said download would be $5,000…I have about 600 books in my paper book collection…Digitally, that same collection could be downloaded in around 30 minutes and stored on a cheap 1GB thumb drive, which could then be copied in a matter of seconds and passed on to someone else…What a surprising number of people have told me is that they pirate stuff for the same reason that a lot of people like the Kindle: it's all about instant gratification….one friend…has a Netflix account…yet he he says sometimes uses Bit Torrent to get the movie so he can watch it faster….Scott Turow, the President of the Author's Guild and a practicing lawyer, is acutely aware of how much of a problem it is and could become…"Musicians make up for the copies of their songs that get pirated by performing live. I don't think there will be as many people showing up to hear me read as to hear Beyonce sing. We need to make sure piracy is dealt with effectively…”

25. Amazon Prime Instant Videos Isn’t a Netflix Killer — Yet http://gigaom.com/video/amazon-instant-videos/ Amazon has finally unveiled its Prime Instant Videos, making more than 5,000 movie and TV titles available for unlimited streaming as part of its Amazon Prime free shipping service…Some will compare Amazon’s pricing at $79 a year (or about $6.50 a month) to Netflix’s monthly streaming subscription pricing, which is currently $7.99 a month or about $86 a year. And while Amazon’s pricing is generally somewhat cheaper — and comes with the added bonus of free, two-day shipping — the service has only 5,000 titles, just a quarter of the 20,000 movies and TV shows that Netflix boasts as part of its streaming service…Amazon isn’t everywhere…Amazon Prime also don’t have support for a number of mobile devices — like the iPad, iPhone and Windows Phone 7 — that Netflix is already on…it’s unlikely that Amazon will be able to unseat Netflix as the #1 streaming subscription service anytime soon…”

26. 'The Legend of Zelda' Celebrates 25 Years http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,2817,2380740,00.asp Today, "The Legend of Zelda" reaches a milestone. Twenty-five years ago, the game first debuted in Japan…The world was first introduced to Link on Feb. 21, 1986 on Famicom, Japan's Nintendo console. It went on sale for the NES in the U.S. the following year…more than 15 official versions of The Legend of Zelda have been released…The Legend of Zelda has sold more than 59 million copies worldwide, and it's the fourth-best selling Nintendo game of all time, behind the first three Super Mario Brothers titles…”

Economy and Technology

27. GetJar Snags $25 Million As It Looks to Ride Android Growth http://gigaom.com/2011/02/15/getjar-snags-25-million-as-it-looks-to-ride-android-growth/ Independent mobile app store GetJar announced it has grabbed $25 million in Series C funding as it looks to become the premier open Android market…The latest investment brings GetJar’s total funding to $42 million. GetJar said it will use the money to expand sales, marketing and engineering efforts as it works to build upon its 1.5 billion downloads to date…GetJar’s growth comes as app stores proliferate, as they try to capitalize on an estimated $15 billion in app sales expected this year…the Wholesale Application Community, an alliance of dozens of carriers, announced the commercial launch of its app store. This isn’t even counting mobile app recommendation sites and apps like AppBrain and Appsfire, which are also driving mobile downloads…GetJar still feels like it can flourish because it offers a lot of discovery options and has wider distribution globally…there’s a lot of opportunity to be had in the app craze, though I expect Google is going to ratchet up its efforts to be the premier destination for Android app sales. That’s going to make it tougher for GetJar, Amazon and others to compete for Android app users. But if the mobile app boom continues as it does, there may be plenty of business to go around.”

28. Social Media Now Top Marketing Pick for Local Businesses http://www.businessnewsdaily.com/social-media-now-top-marketing-pick-for-local-businesses-1016/ “…a new survey…revealed that local merchants, who usually have very limited time and money for marketing, are increasingly gravitating toward marketing methods...According to the MerchantCircle quarterly confidence index of 8,500 small and local businesses across the U.S…Facebook is the clear category leader…Because of its huge consumer adoption, ease-of-use and low barrier to entry, the social media network continues to be a popular way for merchants to market their businesses, with 70 percent using Facebook for marketing…Facebook has now surpassed Google (66 percent) as the most widely used marketing method among local merchants, the survey showed, and is almost neck and neck with Google Search (37 percent versus 40 percent) as being one of their top three most effective marketing tools. Facebook Places has also benefitted from this high level of adoption, soaring past Foursquare to reach a 32 percent current usage rate…Twitter has also grown in popularity over the past year, MerchantCircle said, with nearly 40 percent of local merchants using the platform to build awareness and community around their products and services…Offline marketing has been the loser with local businesses. During 2010, print advertising dropped by 33 percent, use of print Yellow Pages decreased 18 percent and use of direct mail fell by 26 percent…”

Civilian Aerospace

29. Dream Chaser Spacecraft Nearing Commercial Flights http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,2817,2380583,00.asp A private-sector spacecraft, in development by Sierra Nevada Corporation, is on its way to proving to NASA it can bring passengers and cargo into low Earth orbit. Dubbed the Dream Chaser…It's been described as being about the same size as a business jet…The Dream Chaser's strong carbon-composite body…houses motorized wheels underneath that will allow it to land on commercial runways…Sierra Nevada, in a press release, stated it has completed the four necessary milestones for NASA so far, including…a successful drop test of a scaled version of the Dream Chaser from more than 14,000 feet…Sierra Nevada Corporation received financial and technical assistance for the endeavor from NASA's Commercial Crew Development Program, which has a $50 million fund to stimulate the private sector to develop cost-effective space transportation capabilities. Sierra, which acquired private space company SpaceDev in 2008, has so far received by far the largest chunk of money—up to $20 million…”

30. GLXP Moon Race Brings 29 Teams to the Starting Line http://www.wired.com/wiredscience/2011/02/lunar-x-prize-teams/ "…The X Prize Foundation on Thursday announced that 29 teams had signed contracts making them the official Google Lunar X Prize competitors, contending for more than $30 million in prizes. The competitors, headquartered in 17 different countries, have been crafting promising business plans and rolling out prototypes…Lunar science could also get a boost from more frequent visits, as multibillion-dollar moon missions launched every decade or so by the government are too infrequent and too risky to encourage much growth in the field. “Doctoral students who want to do lunar science shouldn’t have to gamble their Ph.D.s on one launch,” Pomerantz said. “If lunar shots can go every six months or so, we’ll see a much higher volume of scientific results as well as scientists.”…Organizers of the prize aren’t happy about the prospect — they may lose rights to video and images from the first privatized lunar landing…GLXP will get intellectual property rights related to multimedia….some teams are working big deals with cable TV providers to license content to their networks…propulsion engineer Tim Pickens, who leads the Rocket City Space Pioneers team, says the prize isn’t the greatest of his co ncerns.“If you need the prize to make your team’s business work, you’re hosed,” said Pickens, who helped build SpaceShipOne and win the Ansari X PRIZE in 2004 — a win that spawned Virgin Galactic and a nearly $1 billion private industry in suborbital flights…”

Supercomputing & GPUs

31. NVIDIA Quadro GPUs Enable Interactive Virtual Heart http://www.hpcwire.com/news/NVIDIA-Quadro-GPUs-Enable-Virtual-Heart-Model-116345549.html “…Quadro GPUs are being used to power the first virtual 3D heart, a model so realistic it can be viewed from any angle in photorealistic detail….three clinicians at University College London Hospitals (UCLH) Heart Hospital… reasoned that if a virtual model were based on an anatomical 3D data set, it could be used to create a simulated ultrasound image…that would allow trainees to simulate a delicate examination technique called transesophageal echocardiography…They doctors laid out their plan for "an anatomically accurate, computer-generated heart model that could instantly produce an authentic ultrasound representation, be animated to beat in real-time to show changes in the heart's shape during the cardiac cycle…"What the NVIDIA GPU does within HeartWorks is load and display extremely complicated models, and render them at 30 frames a second…It is now being used as a teaching tool at Duke University in the Department of Anesthesiology…”

32. Bon Jovi Brings Cloud GPUs to a Stadium Near You http://gigaom.com/cloud/bon-jovi-brings-cloud-gpus-to-a-stadium-near-you/ “…Bon Jovi has partnered with Animoto on a fan-video contest for each city on its current tour — which kicked off last week — a possibility made possible by Animoto’s transition to Amazon Cluster GPU Instances. Any story that combines Bon Jovi and cloud computing is cool enough, but this one also stands out as an example of how broad an effect GPUs in the cloud might have…Jefferson said while it used to take six minutes to render a standard-definition video, GPU instances have cut that time to 45 seconds. HD videos still take a few minutes, he explained, but that’s a fraction of the time it would have taken previously…the costs between building a GPU farm or renting one from AWS were “competitive,” Jefferson said Animoto went with Amazon to continue avoiding the hassle of managing its own server…Amazon’s Cluster GPU Instances have only been available since mid-November, and already they’re being used for a Bon Jovi tour, which begs the question of what new use cases we’ll see for them as companies begin thinking about how they might utilize this type of power at their fingertips…”


*****

0 Comments:

Post a Comment

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home