2012/05/29

NEW NET Weekly List for 29 May 2012

Below is the final list of issues for the Tuesday, 29 May 2012, NEW NET (NorthEast Wisconsin Network for Entrepreneurism and Technology) 7:00 - 9:00 PM weekly gathering at Sergio's Restaurant, 2639 South Oneida Street, Appleton, Wisconsin, USA. We managed to discuss somewhere near twenty of the list items last week. The goal this week is to get input from NEW NET participants regarding whether they'd like to do a 'monthly topic' meeting on the first Tuesday of each month, e.g. "Mobile Technology" in June and "Google Docs" in July. If this sounds worth trying, we'll develop a list of five monthly topics which are of interest to the people who show up for NEW NET Tuesday night meetings.

The ‘net
1.        Nine-year-old’s lunch blog shames school into making changes  http://grist.org/list/nine-year-olds-lunch-blog-shames-school-into-making-changes/  “Martha Payne had some sad-ass lunches at her school in Scotland — unsatisfying food that sometimes had more hair than vegetables. So the 9-year-old decided to start a blog with photos and vital statistics about her meals. Almost immediately, the blog got international attention, including from prominent school lunch busybody Jamie Oliver. Result? Martha’s dad just met with the local council, and it announced that kids could have unlimited salad, fruit, and bread. For each of her lunches, Martha rated taste, healthiness, and pieces of hair (usually zero but not always). But she only managed five ratings before the media attention started making the school self-conscious…”
2.       Gigabit Squared raises $200M to bring super fast internet to 6 communities  http://venturebeat.com/2012/05/24/gigabit-squared-super-fast-internet/  “The dream of bringing a gigabit-per-second high-speed broadband internet connection is becoming a reality for at least six university communities in the U.S. — a country that’s known for the speed of producing its hamburgers and french fries, not its internet. Gigabit Squared, a broadband internet startup, announced Wednesday that it has raised $200 million in funding to build out high-speed internet for these communities. The startup will be partnering with the Gig.U project to determine the universities that will get the new infrastructure, which will be deployed between November and March 2013…”
3.       Goodbye to Windows Live  http://www.nytimes.com/2012/05/27/business/windows-live-brand-fades-into-the-sunset-digital-domain.html  “IF you own a Windows-based PC, you may like the operating system well enough. Or you may merely tolerate it, if you give it much thought at all. But…Microsoft acts as if its customers have a strong affection for all things Windows. For the last seven years, it has tried to make Windows the anchor brand for software that is not an operating system…Windows Live Essentials, for example, was the name for a suite of software products that could be installed on a PC, and included photo management, video editing and instant messaging. Windows Live Mesh provided file synchronization among one’s personal computers, including Macs. And the list went on: Windows Live Mail, Windows Live Search, Windows Live Toolbar, Windows Live Family Safety, Windows Live Writer, and others. Windows Live Essentials turned out to be less than essential after all. The company is effectively leaving behind the Windows Live brand name as it renames the products that currently feature that two-word phrase…the imminent arrival of a new version of its flagship PC operating system, Windows 8, seems to provide cover for the change…With the new version of Windows, many of the Windows Live products and services that had been packaged separately will be installed as a part of the operating system. “There is no ‘separate brand’ to think about or a separate service to install…”  http://blogs.msdn.com/b/b8/archive/2012/05/02/cloud-services-for-windows-8-and-windows-phone-windows-live-reimagined.aspx  “…Microsoft account is our identity service for individuals who use Microsoft products and services. You can use your Microsoft account to sign in to your Windows 8 PC, and then use the same account to check your billing for services like Xbox LIVE, Zune, and the Windows 8 app store…You can sign up for a Microsoft account with any email address, and provide additional verification information including your mobile phone number and a list of your trusted devices.  We’ll be rolling out the change in nomenclature from Windows Live ID to Microsoft account over the next several months across our product line…Windows 8 is designed to be cloud-powered, so it comes with Metro style apps for communication, sharing, scheduling, photos, and videos. Preview versions of these apps come installed with the Windows 8 Consumer Preview and include Mail, Calendar, People, Photos, Messaging, and SkyDrive.  They’re all powered by cloud services, so when you sign in with your Microsoft account, your email, calendar, contacts, messages, and shared photo albums show up right in your apps.  For customers who have shared family PCs, family safety is now a feature of Windows accounts and no longer requires a separate download. As we’ve discussed before, Windows Phone comes with the same set of apps, powered by cloud services, and connected to your Microsoft account.  For customers who use Windows 7, we have a set of Windows desktop apps, including Photo Gallery, Movie Maker, Mail, Messenger, Family Safety, and our recently released SkyDrive for the Windows desktop. The chart below breaks down our software and services in the new world of Windows 8…”
4.       50 million people choose OpenDNS  http://blog.opendns.com/2012/05/25/a-milestone-for-the-record-books-50-million-people-choose-opendns/  “Today is a big day for OpenDNS. We announced we’re now 50 million strong. More than 50 million people around the world — from our home base in San Francisco to some of the planet’s furthest reaches — choose OpenDNS. They are Chief Security Officers at Fortune 50 enterprises, small business owners, parents looking to keep their kids safe online and people who care about having a safer, more reliable Internet experience…”
5.        Does The US Need Regulation To Force Meaningful Broadband Competition?  http://www.techdirt.com/articles/20120522/04163519014/broadband-crisis-does-us-need-regulation-to-force-meaningful-competition.shtml  “Susan Crawford believes telecommunications in America are going through the biggest crisis ever, and this is just as bad as the banking crisis was. Monday, at the Freedom 2 Connect conference, the Internet law scholar and former Special Assistant for Science, Technology and Innovation Policy at the White House, laid out what's wrong with broadband in America, hinting and what needs to be done to fix it. It's not going to be easy…To support her thesis, Crawford presented some stunning numbers. In the last two years, Comcast market share has grown from 16.3 million subscribers to 18.5, a 14 percent growth. Time Warner Cable has grown 10 percent, from 9.2 to 10.7 million customers. Meanwhile, DSL subscribers have plummeted: AT&T and Verizon market share is down 22 and 21 percent respectively…”
Security, Privacy & Digital Controls
6.       IBM Outlaws Siri, Worried She Has Loose Lips  http://www.wired.com/wiredenterprise/2012/05/ibm-bans-siri/  “If you work for IBM, you can bring your iPhone to work, but forget about using the phone’s voice-activated digital assistant. Siri isn’t welcome on Big Blue’s networks. The reason? Siri ships everything you say to her to a big data center in Maiden, North Carolina. And the story of what really happens to all of your Siri-launched searches, e-mail messages and inappropriate jokes is a bit of a black box. IBM CIO Jeanette Horan told MIT’s Technology Review this week that her company has banned Siri outright because, according to the magazine, “The company worries that the spoken queries might be stored somewhere.” It turns out that Horan is right to worry. In fact, Apple’s iPhone Software License Agreement spells this out: “When you use Siri or Dictation, the things you say will be recorded and sent to Apple in order to convert what you say into text,” Apple says. Siri collects a bunch of other information — names of people from your address book and other unspecified user data, all to help Siri do a better job. How long does Apple store all of this stuff, and who gets a look at it? Well, the company doesn’t actually say. Again, from the user agreement: “By using Siri or Dictation, you agree and consent to Apple’s and its subsidiaries’ and agents’ transmission, collection, maintenance, processing, and use of this information, including your voice input and User Data, to provide and improve Siri, Dictation, and other Apple products and services…”
7.        Odd That Microsoft Demands Google Take Down Copyright-Contravening Links That Remain In Bing  http://www.techdirt.com/articles/20120524/18190719071/odd-that-microsoft-demands-google-take-down-links-that-remain-bing.shtml  “We just wrote about Google's very cool, new copyright transparency tool, which lets you dig into the details of all the search takedowns that Google gets. As people start to play around with the site, some interesting things are coming to light. Lots of people noticed that the number one copyright holder requesting takedowns from Google search was... Microsoft. While some have suggested this is an attempt by a competitor to worsen Google's search rankings, that's difficult to believe for a variety of reasons. If Microsoft were issuing bogus takedowns, that would certainly come to light pretty quickly. However, what is interesting is that you can use the new system to play around and notice that Microsoft doesn't always seem to take down from its search engine, Bing, the same links that it orders Google to takedown. As we noted in our original post, there's been plenty of talk suggesting that Google isn't fast enough in taking down things upon DMCA request, but the company claims that they average less than 11 hours -- and considering that they're processing over 1 million takedowns per month (and are checking them by hand), that's pretty impressive. How long does it take Microsoft to take content down?...you would think that if Microsoft is sending a takedown notice to Google to remove a site from its search engine, that it's almost certainly letting Bing know to remove it too, right? Why wouldn't it. But if you do some digging, you can find sites that Microsoft has ordered taken down from Google, but which are still available via Bing…” [does Bing leave the copyright-ignoring links up because they make net profit for MS or because the MS legal department doesn’t realize Bing is a Microsoft search engine? – ed.]
8.       TV Networks File Legal Claims Saying Skipping Commercials Is Copyright Infringement  http://www.techdirt.com/articles/20120525/04185919074/tv-networks-file-legal-claims-saying-skipping-commercials-is-copyright-infringement.shtml  “Okay, we had expected the TV networks to possibly take legal action against DISH Networks for its new Auto Hopper technology, which allows DISH subscribers who use the Hopper feature (which records all prime time shows from the four major networks) to autoskip commercials, if they watch shows in the days after they originally air. It wasn't a surprise that the TV networks didn't like this at all, but could they really make a legal argument that skipping commercials was against the law? We've all heard the story of former Turner Broadcasting exec Jamie Kellner claiming that not watching commercials was "theft," but do the networks actually think there's a legal basis for such claims? It appears they do. Though, the legal arguments are insane…”
9.       Oracle Java Lawsuit Against Android Java Defeated by Google. What About Microsoft?  http://www.zdnet.com/blog/open-source/google-kicks-oracle-in-its-patent-teeth/11062  “Oracle loses its patent claims and so Google has almost completely defeated Oracle in its…attempts to squeeze an intellectual property payoff from Google and Android…the jury has ruled that Google didn’t infringe on Oracle’s patents…As Oracle’s own expert…said earlier, even if Google were found guilty on all those counts, Oracle would had won maximum damages of $32.3-million. Oracle may have spent more than that every month keeping this case going…Judge William Alsup…said he’d be deciding on the related application programming interface (API) copyright issue next week. I find it highly unlikely that he’ll rule that APIs can be copyrighted. If Alsup does rule that APIs can’t be copyrighted that leaves Oracle with nine, count ‘em, nine lines of copyrighted code in the tens of millions of lines of Android. Those lines are now long gone…During the trial, Alsup said that he had learned how to write enough code leading him to believe that anyone could have written those nine lines of code. As Alsup told Oracle counsel David Boies, “The idea that somebody copied that in order to get to market faster when it would be just as fast to write it - it was an accident that it got in there. You’re one of the best lawyers in America. How could you even make that argument?…”  http://www.internetnews.com/blog/skerner/oracle-java-claims-defeated-by-google.-what-about-microsoft.html  “…Oracle's patent claims against Google's use of Java in Android have been defeated in a California courtroom jury trial…But it's not the end of the fight. For one, Oracle will appeal. The other issue, is that…Oracle's Samurai CEO Larry Ellison elected to go with the full frontal assault against Google in a fair courtroom fight…With Microsoft there is no such justice or fairness. Microsoft has solicited every major Android vendor and claimed that there is alleged patent infringement in Android that violates Microsoft IP. Microsoft has never brought its claims to trial, there has never been a fair fight…Now that Oracle has been defeated once, Microsoft should be plenty worried…wouldn't it be great if Google could get Microsoft into a court of law to force them to prove their allegations?…”
10.     How to sue a telemarketer  http://www.impactdialing.com/2012/05/how-to-sue-a-telemarketer/  “Last October, I got a phone call from a recorded message asking me about putting advertising on my property. I hung up, but received the same call two days later; this time I called back, and a recording told me to press 9 to be removed from the marketing list. Despite pressing 9, I received the exact same call again a month later. I got mad, and decided to sue whoever was calling me. Here’s how I did it and got $4,000…I believe that, done right, telemarketing can be an effective, appreciated way to get people services they want, deliver important political messages, and raise money for non-profits. Unfortunately, it’s often done very wrong, and the consumers receiving the calls are left annoyed at best or scammed at worst. The government rarely enforces the laws against bad telemarketers, but consumers have a “private right of action” that lets you sue for $500 per violation, with up to triple damages for telemarketers who knowingly violate the law. So, without further ado, here’s how to sue a telemarketer…”
Mobile Computing & Communicating
11.      Active antennas: The cure for our phone-reception ills?  http://gigaom.com/broadband/active-antennas-the-cure-for-our-phone-reception-ills/  “Ethertronics has developed a means for the antenna in your phone to morph depending on the cellular signal conditions you and your device happen to be wading through. Why do you care? Well, if the technology lives up to Ethertronics’ promises the next generation of smartphones and Wi-Fi devices will be able to get decent signals even in the most abysmal network conditions. In short, you will see faster speeds more often and fewer dropped calls. There’s a tendency to think of the your phone as a tin can and the connection it makes to the tower as an invisible string stretched taught between two antennas. But in reality it’s a crazy, crazy radio airwave world out there. Your connection is actually a bunch of signals all of which are taking a round about way to reach your device. Like pinballs, they ricochet multiple times off buildings, the ground, cars, even your Aunt Marge’s sunglasses before hitting your phone – each signal arriving at a slightly different time depending on the path it took. Your phone is pretty good as sorting through these signals, but when you start tossing in other variables, such as you or objects around you moving, that sorting process becomes a bit of a mess. The typical di-pole antenna in your phone is designed to receive signals under an optimal set of conditions, and if those conditions aren’t met, your connection suffers. So what Ethertronics has done is made an antenna that can adapt itself to those other less-than-optimal conditions…”
12.     Yahoo's new Web ‘browser,’ Axis, focuses on mobile  http://www.bbc.com/news/technology-18187015  “Yahoo has launched new search software which offers results as a swipeable string of webpage previews rather than a list of links. Called Axis, the service is being released as an app for Apple's iPads and iPhones, and as a plug-in for web browsers…Other innovations include: The ability to deduce which page previews are wanted and display them before the full query has been typed in…Different devices can share bookmarks, partly-completed searches and a customised home page…Recent data from digital analytics firm comScore suggested that in April, Yahoo sites accounted for just 13.5% of search queries in the US. Two years earlier the figure was 20.4%...Early reviews have praised Axis's design and the convenience of the service. However, other attempts to introduce visual search results have failed to win much traction. Oolone, Redz and Simploos already offer webpage previews…But one internet analyst told the BBC that Yahoo may have more success thanks to its focus on mobile devices…”  http://gigaom.com/mobile/yahoo-axis-a-surprising-fresh-take-on-mobile-browsers/  “…I’m very impressed with the user interface implemented in Axis. It’s simple and fast to use…the browser has a number of sliding panes — both horizontally and vertically — that you swipe to get around the web…The entire UI is seamless and very focused on swiping as opposed to tapping. Yahoo clearly spent time figuring out the best way to take advantage of the touchscreens found on today’s smartphones…” [hard to tell at this point whether Axis will be a popular way to find web ‘stuff’ on your smartphone, but somewhere out there is a killer app for mobile web search – ed.]
13.     Who’s building mobile Websites? Pizzerias and plumbers  http://gigaom.com/mobile/whos-building-mobile-websites-pizzerias-and-plumbers/  “Mom and pop pizzerias love – and I mean love — the mobile Web. Why? There’s a feature embedded in many of their sites called click-to-call that allows a hungry, and quite possibly stoned, mobile surfer to initiate a phone order directly from the Webpage. According to Duda Mobile, which has helped hundreds of local pizzerias go online, the take up rate on click-to-call is nearly 35 percent. Duda is bringing hundreds of thousands of small-and medium-sized businesses to the mobile Web, giving food trucks and haute cuisine joints, attorneys and dentists, their first taste of the mobile Internet and a means for their customers to find them on their phones. We last reported on Duda when Google tapped the Silicon Valley/Israeli startup to power its Go Mo program, which will optimize any Website for mobile and host it for a year at no charge. But the company has also licensed its service to AT&T, HP, Yahoo and Webs.com, leading to enormous growth in its business. Last August it was hosting less 100,000 sites. Now it’s up 1.65  million…”
14.     My So-Called Quantified Life  http://www.technologyreview.com/web/40453/  “Until recently, I didn't pay much attention to the data that makes up my life—how many steps I take each day or miles I bike each week, how often I update my Facebook status, feel stressed out, or have a drink. A growing group of people do track this sort of data as part of the "quantified self" movement—everything from mood ratings to exercise routines to sleeping and eating habits. The idea is that this kind of tracking can teach us valuable things about ourselves and help us make better choices…Self-tracking has gotten much easier in the past few years, with the explosion of smart-phone apps like RunKeeper, Foursquare, and Daytum, and wearable devices like the activity-monitoring Fitbit and sleep-monitoring Zeo. A number of apps and websites have popped up promising to collect and process this data to make self-tracking simpler. Still, I was skeptical that it would be useful for a creature of habit like me. I ride my bike along pretty much the same route to and from work each day, order the same dishes at the same restaurants, and stick to a reliable eight-hours-a-night sleep schedule. I wasn't sure what the point would be of charting this stuff…I decided to quantify much of my own data for a few weeks. I signed up for the private beta of a London-based startup called Tictrac, which aims to make it easier to monitor all sorts of activities on and off the Web by integrating with websites like Facebook and LinkedIn, apps like Foursquare and Runkeeper, and gadgets such as Fitbit and the Withings Wi-Fi Body Scale. Tictrac users choose a number of "trackers" for collecting and organizing behavior—some automatically import data from connected services, while others, like one that notes your appetite, require input from the user…”
15.     Mobile Online Shopping Holds The Real Opportunity In Mobile Payments  http://techcrunch.com/2012/05/27/mobile-online-shopping-holds-the-real-opportunity-in-mobile-payments/  “Every day there is a new headline about mobile payments focused on using a mobile phone to pay at retail locations. Paypal, Google and other industry giants are racing to provide new in-store mobile payment solutions. Large merchants, such as Wal-mart and Target have contemplated their own mobile payment solutions.  The debate about whether NFC will be the preferred technology to enable mobile payments rages. However, despite all this press and efforts by industry giants, there is stunningly little traction to use a mobile device to pay at retail locations. This is largely because the solutions offered by industry giants thus far don’t solve a meaningful problem in the daily lives of consumers or merchants. Few things in life are easier for consumers than swiping a credit card at checkout and in-store payment systems are as easy and ubiquitous as dial-tone for merchants…There is a massive mobile commerce opportunity that is a severe pain point for both consumers and merchants, but large industry players are failing to meaningfully address it. That opportunity is e-commerce on the mobile device or m-commerce. M-commerce is ramping up, proving that consumers not only like to shop via their mobile device, but also will purchase…the numbers also show that there’s significant room for improvement in the mobile device purchasing experience – mainly through optimizing the shopping and payment processes for consumers…”
Apps
16.     Orbotix: Where Mobile Apps and the Toy Industry Collide  http://www.entrepreneur.com/article/223611  “Consider the ball…for Ian Bernstein and Adam Wilson, the 28-year-old founders of Denver-based Orbotix, it's the pinnacle of robotics and a prime example of how smartphones will one day interact with the world. Orbotix released its first product, the $130 Sphero, in December 2011. A grapefruit-size orb that connects to iOS and Android devices via Bluetooth, Sphero is, simply, the world's first smartphone-controlled ball. Dreamed up by Bernstein, a robotics whiz, and Wilson, a software hacker and Bluetooth master, the device consists of motors, processors, gyroscopes and accelerometers, which propel it; LED lights, which change its color; and a sturdy polycarbonate shell that can withstand a 6-foot drop onto concrete. A variety of apps let users drive, fling, putt and roll Sphero anywhere within a 50-foot range. Another, Chromo, turns the ball into a type of 3-D controller that interacts with a game on a user's handheld device…”
17.     Kullect: the app for digital packrats  http://gigaom.com/2012/05/25/kullect-the-app-for-digital-packrats/  “We collect a lot of stuff online — photos, videos, location check-ins, likes, tweets and other thoughts. But many times those things are scattered all over disparate websites or social networks or, more often than not, stay stored in our phones. So how do you build a repository of the stuff you like — or “curate” — and maintain the context in which you collected them? The guys behind Kullect have a cool idea. Kullect (pronounced like “collect”) is what they call a “social memory” app. It’s a place where you start collections of things you like, whether that’s your favorite lunch spots, pictures of cute cats, inspirational quotes, memes or videos. What you curate is a reflection of you…Kullect is meant to be an easy, mobile-first experience that anyone can use to build their digital collections while keeping the time and place of where you found it…”
SkyNet
18.     Google Maps Navigation 6.7.0  http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,2817,2404803,00.asp  “Pros…Voice-activated address input works well. Photorealistic exit and destination views. Google's POI database is the best available and is always up-to-date. Real-time traffic data is very granular…in 2009, Google changed the mobile nav landscape with the original Google Maps Navigation, the first entirely free app that delivered voice-enabled, turn-by-turn directions on Android phones. At the time, no other smartphone offered free GPS navigation with voice prompts, meaning that you could use it while driving. (Google Maps by itself, among other apps, had offered free directions without voice for years.) Since it's been two and a half years, we thought we'd circle back and test Google Maps Navigation again to check out its various upgrades. It turns out Google has made a few improvements, but still hasn't addressed some key deficiencies. Nonetheless, it's a solid app and an easy Editors' Choice—and you certainly can't beat the price. While today's Android phones may come with GPS and Google Maps Navigation for free, you should still buy a few accessories if you're using it behind the wheel. Namely, a windshield or dashboard mount for your phone, and a DC power cord to keep your phone charged. Without the first one, you'll be a hazard on the road, and without the second, your phone's battery will drain inside of two hours, thanks to the power-sapping GPS radio…” [if you use smartphone navigation in your vehicle, which app works best for you and how often do you use it? – ed.]
19.     Google+ wants to be your new Flickr  http://venturebeat.com/2012/05/22/google-wants-to-be-your-new-flickr/  “Google+ is succeeding in small bursts, feature by feature. As a social network competing with Facebook it’s a flop, but its video-chat tool Hangouts is a winner. Now photo sharing is poised to be the service’s next breakout hit, thanks to an enthusiastic community of photographers who like the focus on attractive full-size images, Google+’s new photo-centric iPhone app, and a uniquely Google passion for metadata. In fact, Google+ is pushing hard on the photography front and is in a great position to dominate the floundering Flickr. The Google+ team teamed up with Kelby Training for a two-day Google+ Photographers Conference in San Francisco, or as it was adorably called, a HIRL — Hangout in Real Life. Vice president of product for Google+ Bradley Horowitz (pictured above), who led Yahoo’s purchase of Flickr in 2005, kicked off the event Tuesday by talking about the future of photography…For the past four-plus years, Horowitz has pushed his passion for “social computing” at Google: combining photos, algorithms, and human interaction. While some of us may see the rising flood of images and data — from camera settings to GPS location — as overwhelming, Horowitz sees it as an opportunity…”  http://gigaom.com/2012/05/22/google-plus-social-photos/  “…Trey Ratcliff…has been using the social network extensively to connect with fans and photo geeks alike. He is hosting Hangouts about photography, sharing his latest pictures with his more than two million followers, and meeting people all over the world for real-life events….Ratcliff isn’t alone in his use of Google+. Photographers in particular have embraced the social network with enthusiasm, making use of the way it presents photos within news feeds and the integrated lightbox that makes it easy to browse entire galleries. This has led to not only grassroots-organized Google+ photo walks — meet ups of like-minded photographers who go out in the field and take photos together — but also a Google+ specific conference that is bringing amateur and professional photographers to San Francisco this week. “It’s exploded,” said conference organizer Scott Kelby about photographs flocking to Google+. “I’ve never seen anything like it…”
20.    Google: Your bridge from Outlook to any smartphone's calendar  http://news.cnet.com/8301-33620_3-57440246-278/google-your-bridge-from-outlook-to-any-smartphones-calendar/  “I love Outlook. Don't judge; I'm not alone. It's an outstanding tool for handling e-mail and my calendar. But what if you want to view your Outlook calendar when away from your desktop? I've found Google Calendar Sync is an awesome solution. I know there's Microsoft Exchange that many companies use for syncing Outlook to other devices. I've never been in an organization that used it. Instead, my life of syncing Outlook to a phone started years ago when I'd use Microsoft ActiveSync to have Outlook talk to my Windows Mobile phone. Oh, those were the days. Then along came the iPhone, and iTunes took over, allowing me to sync my Outlook calendar to my iPhone. But, I had to remember to plug-in my phone to do this. Meanwhile, what about syncing to the Web? And syncing to Android? And these days, syncing to Windows Phone? Google Calendar Sync is the solution to all of these issues, at least if you use Windows…”
21.     Hide Page Elements Temporarily In Google Chrome  http://www.ghacks.net/2012/05/26/hide-page-elements-temporarily-in-google-chrome/  “If you print out web pages regularly you may have noticed that it may not be the most economical thing to do, at least when it comes to printing out web pages that do not have a special print button attached to them to only print out the article or information, and not headers, sidebars or advertisement…You can alternatively install a readability extension like Evernote Clearly or Tranquility for that purpose, or an extension like Nuke Anything that lets you remove page elements in the browser temporarily. The author of the Google Chrome extension Dynamite was inspired by Nuke Anything, and had ported the extensions functionality to the Chrome browser. It adds a new entry to the Chrome right-click context menu that you can use to remove select page elements from a web page. This can be useful before printing the web page, or as means to read the contents more comfortably. If you ever had to concentrate on reading an article while a video ad was shown in the sidebar, you know how you’d wish there would be a way to remove that ad right now from that page. Dynamite displays two options in the context menu. It is possible to remove the page element the mouse hovers over right at that moment, or all page elements but the one the mouse is hovering over. The hide all but the select element option can be very useful on sites where you are only interested in the article. It is usually a lot faster than hiding individual elements on a page one after the other…”
22.    Google Loans 22,000 Feet of Office Space To Cornell Univ. for NYC Tech Campus  http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052702303610504577418513588491358.html  “Google…will provide 22,000 square feet of its New York City headquarters—in the heart of Manhattan's high-tech zone—to a new applied-sciences school while the institution's new campus is built on Roosevelt Island in the East River. Officials at Google estimated the market value of the space— which will be provided free to CornellNYC Tech, a joint venture between Cornell University and Technion-Israel Institute of Technology—at between $10 million and $12 million. That estimate includes the value of an option the school has to expand to 58,000 square feet during the next 5½ years while work on its permanent campus is completed. When Google paid $1.9 billion in December 2010 for its New York headquarters, a former freight warehouse in Chelsea, the company occupied about half a million of the total 2.9 million square feet of space. Since then it has acquired more than 100,000 additional square feet, buying out existing tenants…”
23.    Samsung Preps Two New Chromebooks as Google Updates Chrome OS, Apps  http://www.pcworld.com/businesscenter/article/256400/samsung_preps_two_new_chromebooks_as_google_updates_chrome_os_apps.html  “Samsung will launch this week two new Chrome OS-based computers, a laptop and desktop that have been designed to be significantly faster and more versatile than previous models. Along with the new Samsung machines, Google is announcing enhancements to Chrome OS and Google Apps, including tight integration with Google Drive and the ability to edit Google Docs documents offline…Other new features include a new, more sophisticated media player, as well as a native photo editor and uploader, and enhanced video streaming options for YouTube, Netflix and other such sites. Samsung's Chromebook Series 5 550 laptop has a 12.1-inch display (1280x800), weighs 3.3 pounds and its battery lasts for six hours of continuous usage…It has an Intel Celeron 867 dual-core processor running at a clock speed of 1.3GHz, 4G bytes of RAM and a built-in, dual band Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n antenna and a Gigabit Ethernet port. A 3G modem is optional. The machine…will cost $449 for the Wi-Fi only version and $549 for the 3G models…the desktop, called Samsung Chromebox Series 3, has an Intel Celeron B840 dual-core processor running at a clock speed of 1.9GHz, 4G bytes of RAM, a built-in dual-band WiFi 802.11 a/b/g/n antenna and a Gigabit Ethernet port. It also features six USB 2.0 ports, a DVI single link output, a 2x DisplayPort++ Output compatible with HDMI, DVI, VGA and compatibility with Bluetooth 3.0 technology. It costs $329 and doesn't include a monitor, keyboard nor mouse. Compared with the first generation Chromebooks, the Samsung laptop is two and a half times faster, while the desktop is three and a half times faster, according to Google. They boot up in seven seconds and five seconds, respectively…”  http://gigaom.com/2012/05/29/google-newchromebook-chromebox/
General Technology
24.    Apple II Forever: a 35th-Anniversary Tribute to Apple’s First Iconic Product  http://techland.time.com/2012/04/16/apple-ii-forever-a-35th-anniversary-tribute-to-apples-first-iconic-product/  “Thirty-five years ago…more than twelve thousand proto-geeks flooded into San Francisco’s Civic Auditorium. They were there to attend a new event called the West Coast Computer Faire, and the room brimmed with excitement over a new, futuristic gizmo known as the “personal computer.”…One of the tiny startups benefited from having an especially slick booth located in prime real estate near the entrance. The company was called Apple Computer, and a handful of its employees, including founders Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak, were demoing an unreleased machine they called the Apple II…It didn’t take long until it was obvious that the Apple II was going to matter. The machine started shipping in the summer of 1977…It was, however…the most visionary of the early personal computers — the one based on the clearest idea of what a PC should be, and where it could go…The vision that it displayed reflected the wildly different, complementary gifts of its two fathers, Jobs and Wozniak…Like many an Apple product to come, the II shipped with some notable holes in its initial lineup of features. For one thing, like many early PCs it displayed only upper-case characters. Worse: Woz’s version of BASIC could only handle integer numbers, making serious math impossible…The II’s case…had a pop-off lid which revealed eight expansion slots, making it far easier to customize the machine than you could most early consumer-oriented PCs. Dozens of add-in cards from third-party companies let you make the Apple II more useful by beefing up its memory, its graphics and its text capabilities and by adding peripherals such as modems, printers and floppy drives. The Apple II was so famously expandable, in fact, that Apple’s fans found it a shock to the system when the original Mac shipped in a sealed case with no official upgrade options at all. The platform that Woz created was, indeed, a platform — the best and most successful container of its generation for interesting and useful hardware and software add-ons from third companies, much like the iPhone and iPad today…Jobs, who was 22 at the time of the West Coast Computer Faire…was already Steve Jobs — demanding, unreasonable, essential. He “would pass judgment, which is his major talent,” said Chris Espinosa, Apple’s eighth hire…the Apple II readied the world for the Mac, the iPod, the iPhone, the iPad and, come to think of it, every other major technology gadget of the past 35 years. More than any single other computing device, it’s the one that crawled out of the primordial ooze and scampered assertively in the right direction. Countless others followed its lead, and continue to do so…”  http://techland.time.com/2012/04/16/fourteen-ways-to-celebrate-the-apple-iis-35th-birthday/  “…It’s no surprise that the Apple II inspired entire conferences back in the day, such as Boston’s Applefest. But one Apple II conference is still with us. It’s called KansasFest, and the next one will be held in July in Kansas City, MO…”
25.    MIT’s Freaky Non-Stick Coating Keeps Ketchup Flowing  http://www.fastcoexist.com/1679878/mits-freaky-non-stick-coating-keeps-ketchup-flowing  “When it comes to those last globs of ketchup inevitably stuck to every bottle of Heinz, most people either violently shake the container in hopes of eking out another drop or two, or perform the "secret" trick: smacking the "57" logo on the bottle’s neck. But not MIT PhD candidate Dave Smith. He and a team of mechanical engineers and nano-technologists at the Varanasi Research Group have been held up in an MIT lab for the last two months addressing this common dining problem. The result? LiquiGlide, a "super slippery" coating made up of nontoxic materials that can be applied to all sorts of food packaging--though ketchup and mayonnaise bottles might just be the substance’s first targets…”
26.    California Senate votes to allow self-driving cars  http://www.mercurynews.com/cars/ci_20675377/california-senate-votes-allow-self-driving-cars  “California took a step toward becoming the second state in the nation to allow self-driven cars on its roads on Monday, as the state Senate unanimously agreed to allow autonomously driven vehicles such as those pioneered by Google. Google's self-driving cars have already crossed the Golden Gate Bridge and driven along the picturesque Pacific Coast Highway, according to the company, which has taken California lawmakers on test drives. "I had the pleasure of going out for a drive on the autonomous vehicle," California state Senator Alan Lowenthal said before the unopposed vote. "I have to say that there are some still issues with it, but it's a better driver than I am." The California bill, which passed in a 37-0 vote, will now go to the state Assembly for consideration before heading to the desk of Governor Jerry Brown. If passed and signed, it would go into effect in January 2013. "This technology is coming," Senator Alex Padilla, the bill's sponsor, said on the Senate floor. "We've got to embrace the technology and embrace the benefit that comes with it…”
27.    Microsoft to offer 80-inch Windows 8 tablets for offices  http://www.wired.co.uk/news/archive/2012-05/24/ballmer-80-inch  “Steve Ballmer has an 80-inch Windows 8 tablet in his office. He's got rid of his phone, he's got rid of his note paper. It's touch-enabled and it's hung on his wall." This description of the Microsoft CEO's workspace, given to Wired.co.uk…came from Microsoft VP Frank Shaw…"It's his whiteboard, his email machine," Shaw said, "and it's a device we're going to sell."…the model Ballmer is using and that Microsoft will promote is made by "a different company, but it's running Windows 8"…the forthcoming operating system is designed to run on small tablets as well as PCs and laptops, and can be used with low-power ARM-based CPUs similar to those used in smartphones, as well as conventional processors made by Intel and AMD for desktop computers. The 80-inch wall-hung tablet is just another screen size supported by the OS…”
28.    Liquid Metal Battery raises $15M  http://news.cnet.com/8301-11128_3-57441331-54/liquid-metal-battery-raises-$15m-in-series-b-financing/  “Liquid Metal Battery, an MIT spinoff backed by Bill Gates, has secured an additional $15 million…The…company…aims to build a cheap battery for bulk storage of wind and solar power…The company was spun out of the lab of Donald Sadoway, a professor of materials chemistry at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Previous funding for the company has come from France-based oil giant Total and from Gates, who took an interest in the technology after watching Sadoway's lectures online. Sadoway's lab has also received funding from the Department of Energy's ARPA-E research program. Liquid Metal Battery is taking a radically different approach from lithium ion or other conventional batteries in pursuit of a low-cost system for storing many hours of renewable energy. The active components in the battery -- the anode, the cathode, and electrolyte -- are liquid metal alloys…”
Leisure & Entertainment
29.    Pandora now controls over 70% of top U.S. Internet radio market  http://www.bgr.com/2012/05/25/pandora-internet-radio-q1-2013-earnings/  “Pandora…recently…surpassed 150 million users in the United States and was the second most downloaded app in the history of Apple’s App Store…Pandora grew to a record 51.9 million active users, representing a 53% year-over-year increase. The service has a commanding 71.7% share of the top U.S. Internet radio market…The company’s total revenue jumped 58% year-over-year to $80.8 million…Pandora still reported a net loss of $0.09 per share…”
30.    Nvidia demos upcoming Hawken mech game using cloud graphics  http://venturebeat.com/2012/05/26/nvidia-demos-upcoming-hawken-mech-game-using-cloud-graphics-video/  “Hawken is one of the highly anticipated free-to-play downloadable games coming this fall. Graphics chip maker Nvidia showed a demo of the online mech-combat title today in order to demonstrate its cloud graphics technology. Jen-Hsun Huang…chief executive of Nvidia, and Gaikai (cloud gaming platform) chief executive David Perry showed how someone playing the game on an LG TV could square off against someone with an Asus Transformer Prime tablet. They showed the game at the GPU Tech conference last week, and Huang demonstrated it again at Nvidia’s analyst meeting (where I saw it). The demo is very impressive considering Hawken is not a disk-based game. The cloud-based technology will make it work easier and better for players who don’t have awesome gaming hardware. “What is more fun than a mech first-person shooter?” Huang asked. The game is sort of like Call of Duty meets Mech Warrior and has players dueling each other in a ruined city. They stomp around in giant robotic suits that can shoot a chain gun or missiles…”
31.     How Crowd Funding has Transformed the Independent Publishing Landscape  http://www.marketwatch.com/story/how-crowd-funding-has-transformed-the-publishing-landscape-through-hybrid-advances-2012-05-24  “…Joseph Gutiz…recently launched the book project entitled "The Adventures of Chubby Cheeks: The Pro Quest," which balances many issues children face nowadays, such as bullying, financial hardships, and common middle school dilemmas…Although the book has been written and edited, it has never been submitted to any traditional agent or publisher for consideration…However, the project needs support in the form of pledges in exchange for creative rewards, such as an ebook or printed copy, original illustrations, and the opportunity to become a part of the publishing process. Upon the successful funding of the Kickstarter project, the book will be reviewed and officially launch by the end of the year both in print and as an ebook…”
32.    CreateSpace Now Offers Zero-Cost, Inventory-Free Distribution to Amazon Customers in Europe  http://www.marketwatch.com/story/createspace-now-offers-independent-authors-and-publishers-zero-cost-inventory-free-distribution-to-amazon-customers-in-europe-2012-05-17  “Amazon customers in Europe now get immediate availability and local shipping costs on CreateSpace books enabled for distribution in Europe. CreateSpace, an Amazon company, today announced that authors and publishers around the world can now use its independent publishing platform to distribute their books in Europe for free on Amazon.co.uk, Amazon.de, Amazon.fr, Amazon.es and Amazon.it. By using CreateSpace to distribute directly to Amazon, authors and publishers ensure that their titles are always in stock for customers to purchase. Books will be available for same-day shipping, and are also eligible for free shipping and Amazon Prime…CreateSpace authors and publishers can now receive their royalty payments by direct deposit in US dollars, British pounds or Euro…Gayle Laakmann McDowell is the author of the best seller "Cracking the Coding Interview," which is independently published through CreateSpace…"Europe has always proven difficult for me to enter though--how do I print, distribute, and ship my book in the multitude of countries there? I'm so excited to see that CreateSpace is launching European distribution. In 30 seconds and just a few clicks, this has enabled me to tap a whole new market and resolve a problem I'd been laboring over for months…”
Economy and Technology
33.    The Facebook Fallacy  http://www.technologyreview.com/web/40437/  “Facebook is not only on course to go bust, but will take the rest of the ad-supported Web with it. Given its vast cash reserves and the glacial pace of business reckonings, that will sound hyperbolic. But that doesn't mean it isn't true. At the heart of the Internet business is one of the great business fallacies of our time: that the Web, with all its targeting abilities, can be a more efficient, and hence more profitable, advertising medium than traditional media. Facebook, with its 900 million users, valuation of around $100 billion, and the bulk of its business in traditional display advertising, is now at the heart of the heart of the fallacy. The daily and stubborn reality for everybody building businesses on the strength of Web advertising is that the value of digital ads decreases every quarter, a consequence of their simultaneous ineffectiveness and efficiency. The nature of people's behavior on the Web and of how they interact with advertising, as well as the character of those ads themselves and their inability to command real attention, has meant a marked decline in advertising's impact.  At the same time, network technology allows advertisers to more precisely locate and assemble audiences outside of branded channels. Instead of having to go to CNN for your audience, a generic CNN-like audience can be assembled outside CNN's walls and without the CNN-brand markup. This has resulted in the now famous and cruelly accurate formulation that $10 of offline advertising becomes $1 online. I don't know anyone in the ad-Web business who isn't engaged in a relentless, demoralizing, no-exit operation to realign costs with falling per-user revenues, or who isn't manically inflating traffic to compensate for ever-lower per-user value. Facebook, however, has convinced large numbers of otherwise intelligent people that the magic of the medium will reinvent advertising in a heretofore unimaginably profitable way, or that the company will create something new that isn't advertising…”
34.    The tireless entrepreneur who squatted at AOL  http://news.cnet.com/8301-32973_3-57440513-296/meet-the-tireless-entrepreneur-who-squatted-at-aol/  “For two months last fall, Eric Simons secretly took up residence inside the Internet giant's Palo Alto, Calif., campus, eating free food, enjoying gym access, and building a startup in the process…It was 6 a.m. when Eric Simons was jolted awake by the yelling. After working until 4 a.m, the 19-year-old entrepreneur had finally passed out. A few hours of sleep would help with the day ahead. But unlike most people working at AOL's Palo Alto, Calif., campus who were surely still hours from showing up at the sprawling complex, Simons was already there. He'd been living there for two months, hiding out at night on couches, eating the company's food, and exercising and showering in its gym. And now, with an angry security guard bellowing at him, it was all over. The story of how Simons, just two years removed from a Chicago high school, came to be living in AOL's Palo Alto campus could well become part of Silicon Valley lore, especially because it highlights the lengths some entrepreneurs will go to make their dreams a reality…”
35.    Bazaarvoice acquires rival PowerReviews; adds SMBs to social CRM portfolio  http://www.zdnet.com/blog/btl/bazaarvoice-acquires-rival-powerreviews-adds-smbs-to-social-crm-portfolio/78137  “…social software company Bazaarvoice announced last night that it would acquire PowerReviews, a social reviews platform, for $152 million. You probably haven’t heard of either company, but know this: the name of the game is customer interaction and insights. Six-year-old PowerReviews’ platform includes capabilities for ratings and reviews, Q&A, loyalty, discovery, and measurement. The company services about 1,100 retailers — primarily small and mid-size North American retailers…The acquisition gives Bazaarvoice — which is primarily focused on larger online retailers like Costo, Home Depot, Best Buy and Crate & Barrel — an opening to sell to PowerReviews’ extensive list of small- and medium-sized retailers as well as a turnkey technology platform to satisfy them. As with any customer relations management platform, the idea is to monitor all the digital word-of-mouth going on about a company, with the hope of helping it react more quickly (when it’s bad) and proacting more effectively…”
36.    My conversation with Kickstarter co-founder Perry Chen  http://gigaom.com/2012/05/22/kickstarter-founder-perry-chen-intervie/  “We are on the cusp of a big economic shift. I believe that the industrial era is coming to an end and Kickstarter just might be the most visible representation of that. When I look at Kickstarter, I see small businesses that have been funded by their customers. I see the acceleration of this shift away from the industrial manufacturing ideology to more of a maker economy. And I also see an idea so powerful that the company name has become a verb…Pebble Watch…was an idea that was rejected by institutional investors but embraced by actual buyers via Kickstarter. Without broadband-enabled connectivity and Kickstarter, this watch that has now raised upwards of $10 million from over 85,000 people would have not happened. I wouldn’t be surprised to see more of these projects that upend the whole established manufacturing ecosystem. Kickstarter has received $100 million in pledges over the last year and has had a number of projects exceed the million-dollar-pledge mark this year for the first time. And now, Kickstarter is up to 23,000 successfully funded projects and more than 2 million backers. To date, more than $230 million has been pledged to products. Movies, music, city designs, watches, video games — Kickstarter has become an epicenter of creativity…With Kickstarter, creators list a project, a funding goal, a deadline and a way to reward backers who pledge money to the project. The project is only greenlit if it reaches its funding goal, though there is no limit to how much a project can raise. Kickstarter makes its money by taking a 5 percent fee from a successful project’s funding total…”
37.    Fundable mixes Kickstarter-style and equity-based crowdfunding  http://betakit.com/2012/05/22/fundable-mixes-kickstarter-style-and-equity-based-crowdfunding  “New crowdfunding site Fundable, based out of Columbus, OH, is aiming to be among the first to take advantage of the recently passed JOBS Act to provide a platform for U.S. investors to help crowdfund small businesses in exchange for an equity stake. But Fundable isn’t banking on that alone; it’s also using the tried and tested rewards-based model pioneered by Kickstarter. The pre-order and rewards style backing will help Fundable get up and running right now, since equity-based crowdfunding for non-accredited investors, while technically approved in the form of the JOBS Act passed in March, still needs final SEC review and approval to come into effect. That regulatory body has until early 2013 to help work out the specifics of how crowdfunding will work in the U.S. But Fundable CEO and co-founder Wil Schroter told BetaKit in an interview that that’s not the only reason he’s combining the two funding models. Because while equity may be the right angle to appeal to some, pre-orders make a lot of sense, especially when you’re focused on businesses offering consumer products, as Fundable primarily is…”
38.    Why Kickstarter Hides Failed Projects  http://techcrunch.com/2012/05/24/failure-is-not-an-option-why-kickstarter-hides-failed-projects/  “Dan Misener, in a fit of inspired data mining, scraped half of Kickstarter to find failed projects. He could not, it seems, find a single one. Why? Because Kickstarter hides them behind a non-searchable wall. They exist, sure, but you won’t find them with Google and they never, ever show them in their “Discover” browsing system. And good for them…Kickstarter isn’t a marketplace. It’s not like Etsy or eBay or Amazon where the slow-sellers sit next to the hot items. It is, instead, more of a competition. It’s a competition for eyeballs, for cash, and for media attention. It is more a dog show than flea market, and you don’t keep the ugly dogs on stage after the first round of judging. What Misener discovered, in short, was that Kickstarter surfaces only successful or nearly successful projects and hides the failed ones…To his credit, Misener does not call this an outrage. However, as a source for potential crowdsourcing wisdom Kickstarter’s failures are as important as its successes…Spend more than a few minutes poking around, and you’ll realize that Kickstarter’s front page and Discover pages are clearly built to highlight projects that are currently seeking funding, or have already been successfully funded.From a business perspective, this makes total sense. Kickstarter’s business model is built on taking a 5% cut of successful campaigns. Showing failures isn’t in their interest. It is well within Kickstarter’s rights to yank junk projects off the stage. It keeps the site fresh and vibrant and a graveyard of garbage iPod Nano straps is no one’s idea of a good time. That said, to push failed projects down the memory hole with such vigor is a bit harsh…”  http://misener.org/archives/1354  “TL;DR: Kickstarter does not want you to see failed projects. Failed Kickstarter campaign pages include robot meta tags to keep search engines from indexing them. Plus, Kickstarter’s front page and “Discover” interface never show failed projects. Ever…I don’t think there’s anything nefarious or ill-intentioned going on here. Just that Kickstarter has made an interesting design decision when it comes to how it displays (or doesn’t display) “failed” projects…”
DHMN Technology
39.    Independent Publishing Resource Center in Southeast Portland  http://www.oregonlive.com/books/index.ssf/2012/05/independent_publishing_resourc_1.html  “On a quiet Monday evening in Southeast Portland, the Independent Publishing Resource Center comes to life. Joanna Norris uses the letterpress to make some greeting cards. A couple of volunteers with a video camera shoot an interview with Michael Heald, a graduate of the IPRC's certificate program who started a small press, Perfect Day Publishing. Students wander in for a self-publishing class taught by Allison Moon, a visiting writer from Oakland whose new novel "Lunatic Fringe" is the first in a series about lesbian werewolves…Handmade publishing is what IPRC has been all about since its founding in 1998. Anyone can join up and learn to use the letterpress or the binding machine to turn their writing and art into something real; hundreds of zines and independent comics poured out of the cramped upstairs offices on Southwest Oak Street near Reading Frenzy and Powell's City of Books. It was the right time for the Do It Yourself movement in Portland, and the IPRC was in the right place in the culture pocket around West Burnside Street. The only problem was there wasn't much room for more than a couple of do-it-yourselfers at a time…MaryKay West, a board member and commercial real estate broker, led a search that eventually turned up an old solar panel warehouse at 1001 S.E. Division St., across from the newly renovated Ford Building and close to a planned stop on the new MAX line. The building has about 4,000 square feet of space, almost four times as much as the downtown office. More than half of it is floor space with 15-foot ceilings, plenty of room for the letterpress and the zine library and the Yeti Research Station and the Zine Machine…Upstairs there's a small loft area and a conference room and a rooftop deck with views of downtown and the West Hills. It's a pleasant spot on a sunny spring day, but the conference room is more important to the growth of the IPRC. It's there that classes are held, including those for the certificate program that has brought fresh energy and income. It's a two- or three-semester program with three areas of concentration -- fiction/nonfiction, comics/graphic, and poetry -- and an approach that puts an emphasis on design and production as well as creation…” [wouldn’t it be cool if the Fox Valley had an independent publishing resource center?! Maybe the DHMN, the Appleton Library and a few other Fox Valley organizations could collaborate to launch the Fox Valley IPRC – ed.]
40.    Raspberry Pi camera module – first pictures!  http://www.raspberrypi.org/archives/1254  “I was sent this image this morning from Gert…it’s the first picture ever taken from the prototype camera add-on board we’re developing for release later in the year, which will plug into those CSI pins we expose in  the middle of the Raspberry Pi. I will ask Gert, Naush and JamesH, who have been working on this in their free evenings, to answer questions in the comments below – they are also very active on our forums, so please come over and have a chat. We may downgrade the super-duperness of the camera to something with fewer than its current 14 megapixels before release; we need to keep things affordable, and a sensor of that size will end up pricey…”
41.     Google's Schmidt Pledges Raspberry Pi Linux Computers to U.K. Schools  http://ostatic.com/blog/googles-schmidt-pledges-raspberry-pi-linux-computers-to-u-k-schools  “…Google Chairman Eric Schmidt has pledged to give U.K. schools Raspberry Pis and pledged to train 100 teachers in how to pass Linux skills onto students. "Rebooting computer science education is not straightforward," Schmidt said at an event in London, according to the BBC. "Scrapping the existing curriculum was a good first step - the equivalent of pulling the plug out of the wall. The question is now how to power up." Schmidt said that Google's funding would flow to the schools through the charity Teach First, and that teachers would get six-week training courses in order to pass skills, including Raspberry Pi skills onto students…”
Open Source Hardware
42.    Hexy – Open Source Hexapod Robot on the Cheap  http://gadizmo.com/hexy-open-source-hexapod-robot-on-the-cheap.php  “It is a joyous day for all who dream of having their very own programmable six legged robot. Introducing Hexy, all the hexapody goodness at 1/10th the price of typical hexapod robotic kits…Everything you need, including the screwdriver, comes in the kit which includes ultrasonic distance sensor eyes, laser-cut pieces, screws & nuts, 20 servos, arduino-based Servotor32 as well as all the assembly instructions and source material on a thumb drive. Hexy can be programmed from scratch to do what you want with simple text files and easy commands like “rotate left 20 deg.” For those looking for the simple way out, the kit also comes with pre-built code and demos to get you up in running in minutes…”
43.    ‘Make It in America,’ Says Makerbot’s Bre Pettis  http://betabeat.com/2012/05/make-it-in-america-says-makerbots-bre-pettis/  “…“Brooklyn Makers” panel this morning featured a lineup of hands-on hackers from the better borough, who chatted about the wonders of Kickstarter and the question of manufacturing in China. Until you get to a certain critical mass of units, like 100,000 or whatever it is, make your product in America, advised Makerbot’s Bre Pettis. Otherwise, you risk making a boatload of products only to discover a defect after the fact. “Get intimate with your technology. Make it at home.” “There is this new model of making gadgets,” said Amol Sarva of Peek, which used to make Twitter and email PDAs and now sells software services. The new model relies on small-scale production, he said. Peter Semmelhack of Bug Labs (open source hardware) agreed. “There are markets that are not measurable in millions of units but are still good markets,” he said, pointing to how small-scale manufacturing allows for targeting niche markets “which is a much more coherent and logical and sane way to do it, versus going out and raising a bunch of money…”
Open Source
44.    Even Linux Has A Greater Smartphone Market Share Than Windows Phone  http://www.forbes.com/sites/adriankingsleyhughes/2012/05/25/even-linux-has-a-greater-smartphone-market-share-than-windows-phone/  “…it’s currently a two-horse race between Google‘s Android operating system and Apple‘s iOS platform. Microsoft‘s Windows Phone platform is unquestionably the underdog…Microsoft has a lot to do if it plans on closing the gap on Android or iOS. However, before it sets its sights on the big players, it first needs to overtake the little players, and one of those is Linux. So how come Linux has a presence on smartphones? It’s mostly down to Samsung and its Bada operating system. By the end of the quarter, Samsung accounted for over 80 percent of all Linux-powered smartphone shipments…Linux might not have a chance against Microsoft on the desktop, but when it comes to smartphones, it has the Redmond giant beat…”
45.    Grive: A free open source Google Drive client has arrived on Linux  http://www.geek.com/articles/news/grive-a-free-open-source-google-drive-client-has-arrived-on-linux-20120524/  “When Google Drive finally launched after roughly a million years of waiting, we got desktop clients for Windows and OSX. As usual, poor unrequited Linux was left out in the cold. Google says a Linux client is coming, but why wait? A free open source Google Drive client called Grive has been put together by a third-party developer, and it looks quite nice. We all know the dedicated Linux fan doesn’t have time to pronounce two words, thus Google Drive becomes Grive. The program is still in the early stages of public availability, and is missing some features like full sync. Instead, you will have to manually refresh to upload and download new files. Development is proceeding quickly; the file upload ability was just added recently…The Grive application can be installed from the repository in Ubuntu 11.10 or later. The source code is also available at GitHub if you want to tinker a bit. Set up is a bit of a pain right now, and requires some command line work…”
46.    UAVs and open source software combine to digitize historical buildings in 3D  http://www.gizmag.com/uav-building-scanner/22668/  “…a UAV is merely an unpiloted flying machine, and that's a potentially useful thing to have for all sorts of civilian applications. It's already happening. Exhibit A: research at the University of Granada into using small UAVs, equipped with cameras, that scan buildings in order to construct 3D models…We know relatively little about the specific technology, designed with historic buildings and monuments in mind, employed at Granada. Certainly, the UAV looks very similar to the Octo-Copter used by Autodesk, though it flies with only four propellors rather than eight (so, a quadro-copter, then). The researchers are actually testing two prototypes, one, a "standard drone" developed by Intelligenia Dynamics, and a second significantly modified version adapted for better control…As might be expected, it's in the digital realm where the techniques of Autodesk and Granada diverge. Where Autodesk has used its own 123D software suite, and specifically Catch, to stitch 2D photos into 3D models, the team at Granada has looked to open source alternatives, specifically the University of Washington's VisualSFM software. The software has been adapted by the team for this application, with assistance from Virtum Graphics in speeding the model generation algorithms…the ultimate aim is for the UAVs to perform their work completely autonomously…”  http://www.cs.washington.edu/homes/ccwu/vsfm/
Civilian Aerospace
47.    Historic First For Mankind: SpaceX Becomes First Company to Dock Ship at International Space Station  http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/g/a/2012/05/25/bloomberg_articlesM4JP2E6K50XT01-M4LDF.DTL  “May 25…Space Exploration Technologies Corp. docked a supply ship at the International Space Station in a breakthrough for commercial space travel…SpaceX, controlled by billionaire Elon Musk, connected its unmanned Dragon capsule to the station at 12:02 p.m. New York time, according to Kyle Herring, a spokesman for the National Aeronautics and Space Administration. It is the first company to accomplish the feat…”  http://abcnews.go.com/Technology/wireStory/astronauts-enter-worlds-1st-private-supply-ship-16435538#.T8DMuNVPp3k  “…Space station astronauts floated into the Dragon on Saturday…NASA astronaut Donald Pettit, the first one into the docked capsule…"The smell inside smells like a brand new car," Pettit reported…The six space station residents have until the middle of next week to unload Dragon's groceries and refill the capsule with science experiments and equipment for return to Earth…”
48.    "Part-Time" Scientists Aim to Develop Autonomous Rover to Compete for Lunar X PRIZE  http://www.scientificamerican.com/article.cfm?id=lunar-x-prize-autonomous-rover  “Some people try to make the most of their spare time by exercising, volunteering or simply recharging their batteries. Others like to use that time to build robots that can be blasted to the moon and then set free to roam the lunar landscape. A group of engineers and researchers calling themselves Team Part-Time Scientists have chosen the latter, and are building a moon rover named Asimov they hope will win the coveted Google Lunar X PRIZE by early 2014. As the name implies, at least half of Part-Time Scientists' 100 members are holding down full-time jobs at industrial firms or universities. They are competing against 25 other teams to be the first to land a robotic rover on the moon and have it travel 500 meters over the  surface, sending high-definition images and data back to Earth as they go. Part-Time Scientists' goals are representative of all the teams entering the competition—they are aiming for something more lasting than the $20-million first prize. After guiding Asimov beyond the 500-meter mark, the team plans to switch the rover into autonomous mode for the rest of its lunar exploration, making it the first bot built by anyone to navigate on the moon without human intervention…”
Supercomputing & GPUs
49.    Nvidia CEO describes strategic importance of cloud graphics  http://venturebeat.com/2012/05/24/nvidia-ceo-describes-strategic-importance-of-cloud-graphics/  “…Nvidia chief executive Jen-Hsun Huang told analysts today just how important cloud graphics will be to the world. The company announced last week that its recently announced Kepler-based graphics chips are capable of cloud graphics. That means they can process graphics for multiple users in a data center and then dispatch the appropriate graphics as needed to the displays of distant remote users. That allows big new applications for cloud computing in the enterprise. You can, for instance, use your own puny laptop to access huge visual projects such as engineering designs. Your computer will tap the graphics computing power in the cloud to render the images that your laptop could never display in real-time. One graphics processing unit (GPU) in the cloud can supply the graphics for at least four remote users today, compared to just one for prior chips. That makes cloud gaming and enterprise cloud graphics applications far more economical than in the past. “Now we have a GPU for the cloud, a virtual GPU,” Huang said at Nvidia’s analyst day in Santa Clara, Calif. “What that means is that a whole bunch of users can see one GPU and use it as if it were their own.” Nvidia has created a lot of software that enables the virtualized GPU, which can take graphics processing commands from a variety of users and process them on the GPU without regard for where those commands are coming from…”
50.    NVIDIA Works On CPU Co-Dependency Issues with Kepler GPU  http://www.hpcwire.com/hpcwire/2012-05-22/nvidia_works_on_cpu_co-dependency_issues_with_kepler_gpu.html  “With Intel's manycore MIC coprocessor looming on the horizon, NVIDIA's is counting on its upcoming K20 Tesla to retain its dominance in the HPC accelerator marketplace. And while Intel has shared few technical details about its upcoming Knights Corner MIC, NVIDIA has conveniently provided a 24-page white paper (PDF) describing the inner workings of the GK110, the GPU that will power the K20 card for supercomputers…As we described in our Kepler launch coverage last week at the GPU Technology Conference, the big new features in architecture are Hyper-Q and Dynamic Parallelism. Both are changes that aim to relieve the CPU-GPU bottleneck, enabling the GPU to be better utilized for continuous processing, and freeing up the CPU for more mundane serial tasks. Those two features, however, are only available in the supercomputing-grade GK110, not the GK104 that powers the less powerful K10 card…Hyper-Q allows the GPU to execute up to 32 MPI processes, CUDA streams, or threads at the same time. The Fermi GPU could only manage a single task at a time, which limited how much true parallelism the application could attain, and, in many cases, how much of the GPU could be utilized at any particular moment. Hyper-Q should automagically speed up a lot of existing CUDA applications without the need for any source code changes…Along those same lines is GPUDirect, a hardware/software-enabled feature that allows GPUs to talk to one another directly as peers, bypassing the CPU entirely. GPUDirect was present in Fermi, but the new Kepler has additional support that further lessens its reliance on the CPU. Using this feature, a GPU would be able to go through the NIC and exchange data with other GPUs on the network without CPU buffering in main memory. It also enables other PCIe attached devices, like SSDs, to directly access GPU data…”
51.     Supercomputer to connect to 400PB of storage via Ethernet  http://www.computerworld.com/s/article/9227414/Supercomputer_to_connect_to_400PB_of_storage_via_Ethernet  “The National Center for Supercomputing Applications is rolling out a storage infrastructure that will include 380 petabytes of magnetic tape capacity and 25 petabytes of online disk storage made up by 17,000 SATA drives. The massive storage infrastructure is designed to support of one of the world's most powerful supercomputers, called Blue Waters…Blue Waters is expected to have a peak performance of 11.5 petaflops, though the specification given by the NFS is for it to offer 1 petaflop of sustained computing power for applications. The NCSA, which is run by the University of Illinois, has awarded Cray a contract to build the supercomputer. The system will run a Lustre parallel file system with more than 1 terabyte per second of throughput to its back end storage. The supercomputer will be made up of more than 235 Cray XE6 cabinets using 380,000 AMD Opteron 6200 Series x82 processors and more than 30 cabinets of a future version of the recently announced Cray XK6 supercomputer with 3,000 NVIDIA GPUs. The system will include 1.5PB of aggregate memory from 190,000 memory DIMMs. In support of all that computing power, the NCSA is deploying 25PB of disk storage using Cray Sonexion storage systems…”

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