2012/12/04

NEW NET Weekly List for 04 Dec 2012

Below is the final list of issues for the Tuesday, 04 Dec 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.


The ‘net
1.        Yahoo Messenger Getting Less Chatty With Loss of Windows Live Interoperability, Phone Calling  http://allthingsd.com/20121201/yahoo-messenger-getting-less-chatty-with-loss-of-windows-live-interoperability-phone-calling/  “Yahoo is dropping…its Messenger chat…“phone in” and “phone out” capabilities, offered through a partnership with Jajah…as of Jan. 30…free voice calling from one Yahoo messenger user to another will continue to be offered…interoperability with Windows Live Messenger will cease on Dec. 14…Microsoft is in the process of retiring the Windows Live Messenger service in favor of Skype…the company is also axing the Pingbox and public chat features of its instant-messaging program…”
2.       Rocket Lawyer legal tussles with LegalZoom  http://blogs.wsj.com/law/2012/11/28/legalzoom-gets-in-the-ring-with-rocket-lawyer/  “Online legal documents company LegalZoom.com Inc. is suing one of its rivals Google-backed  Rocket Lawyer Inc., over…what it calls unfair business tactics…LegalZoom…provided this statement: “The complaint seeks to stop Rocket Lawyer from misusing the term “free” in its advertisements and promotions…LegalZoom also accuses its rival of trademark infringement…because…Rocket Lawyer allegedly registered…domain names such as www.legalzoomgadget.com that it says are “confusingly similar” to the company’s trademarks. Both companies offer low-cost legal services for small business and consumers by providing legal documents for routine transactions and, increasingly, access to local attorneys through pre-paid legal service plans…LegalZoom sells personalized legal documents—wills starting at $69, trademark registrations for $169, plus government filing fees—and has filed for an IPO…LegalZoom also now offers prepaid legal plans for small businesses and consumers. Rocket Lawyer opened up shop…with a slightly different model: give customers the forms for free and then offer additional legal guidance via pre-paid legal plans that cost anywhere from $9.99 to $39.95 per month…”
3.       Hackpad: collaborative documents without the Google Docs features you don’t need  http://pandodaily.com/2012/11/30/hackpad-is-expanding-its-reach-maybe-even-to-the-white-house/  “…the White House…reached out to the company about having its teams use HackPad’s collaborative platform, which has been compared to Google Docs, but with a Web developer’s slant. The company makes a simple collaborative tool for teams to create and edit documents as a group…The hallmark of the product is a clean design and Web native features. While the Google Doc comparison is fair on the surface, the company says it’s more like a collaborative wiki, with more Web native tools…we’re not thinking about things like presentation…Patrick Collison, CEO of the online payments company Stripe, raved about the company. For collaboration, his team uses a little bit of everything, but HackPad most consistently. Collison also said everyone in the startup world was using it…Amidst all the coverage of tech companies kicking things into gear during the turmoil of Hurricane Sandy last month…FEMA used HackPad to compile a list of gas stations in the region and organize a map of the data…In the case of FEMA using the service, he says he heard the organization “punched a hole in their firewall,” so they could access HackPad. Kofman said he doesn’t know whether or not that’s true or even what exactly that means, but it proves the point: HackPad was crucial at the time…”
4.       How to set up a safe and secure Web server  http://arstechnica.com/gadgets/2012/11/how-to-set-up-a-safe-and-secure-web-server/  “…there's still a tremendous amount of value in controlling an actual honest-to-God website rather than relying solely on the social Web to provide your online presence…Further, the freedom to tinker with both the operating system and the Web server side of the system is an excellent learning opportunity. It's super-easy to open an account at a Web hosting company and start fiddling around there—two excellent Ars reader-recommended Web hosts are A Small Orange and Lithium Hosting—but where's the fun in that?...In this guide, we're going to walk you through everything you need to set up your own Web server, from operating system choice to specific configuration options…a personal Web server doesn't require a lot of juice. You can cobble together a server out of spare parts…We're going to be using a Linux server distro as our server operating system, so the hardware can be minimal. An old Core 2 Duo or Pentium box gathering dust in the corner should work fine. You don't need more than 1GB of RAM…Ten gigabytes of storage is more than you'll ever fill unless you're going to use the server for lots of other stuff…If you don't have hardware available…a virtual machine works perfectly well…The least-complex, free solution is to download and install VirtualBox. That will run on an existing Windows or OS X or Linux host and will let you run a virtualized Linux server with a minimum of fuss…the correct operating system for building a Web server is Linux or BSD…Windows Server is the correct tool for many things…but building a Windows-based Web server is like bringing a blunt butter knife to a gunfight. The Internet and the services that make it run are fundamentally Unix-grown and Unix-oriented. Playing in this playground means you need a Linux or a BSD server…”
5.        Khan Academy Founder Proposes a New Type of College and Releases iPhone App  http://chronicle.com/blogs/wiredcampus/khan-academy-founder-proposes-a-new-type-of-college/41160  “…The founder of Khan Academy…lays out his thoughts on the future of education in his book, The One World School House: Education Reimagined, released last month. Though most of the work describes…his suggestions for changing elementary- and secondary-school systems, he does devote a few chapters to higher education…Mr. Khan conjures an image of a new campus in Silicon Valley where students would spend their days working on internships and projects with mentors, and would continue their education with self-paced learning…students would attend ungraded seminars at night on art and literature, and the faculty would consist of professionals the students would work with as well as traditional professors…Mr. Khan...admires the work of Peter Thiel…who set up a fellowship program for college students to drop out…But he believes living on a college campus is more valuable than Mr. Thiel acknowledges. “Grow Thiel’s fellowship to several hundred students…mentored in various settings…in an inspiring residential campus; and give them a scaffold of academics…students could take internationally recognized assessments to prove themselves…students would not be graded in the imagined university…they would compile a portfolio of their work and assessments from their mentors…”  http://techcrunch.com/2012/11/28/khan-academy-brings-its-3500-educational-videos-to-the-iphone/  “…the company added support for the iPhone, which now allows users to access its library of videos on the go. Unlike Khan’s iPad and web apps, the new app doesn’t include the ability to download the videos so that they can be watched offline, subtitles, or track your progress through the academy and unlock achievements…the app simply allows you to watch videos. This might make the app seem undercooked…but it could actually be a smart move given the limited form factor. Stuffing the entire Khan Academy experience onto the iPhone’s screen likely would diminish the experience of its visualization tools, interactive transcriptions and some of its better gamification and progress-tracking features…”
6.       Using Online Collaboration Tools to Facilitate Social Learning  http://www.igloosoftware.com/blogs/inside-igloo/usingsocialcollaborationtoolstofacilitatesociallea  “Just as social business is rising in importance, so too is the role of community manager. It's quickly moving from what has been perceived as a tactical role to one of strategic importance for a business. The Community Roundtable's third annual State of Community Management report is evidence of that. In the first two iterations of the State of Community Management report…the focus was on identifying the critical competencies in this emerging discipline. Fast forward to 2012 and it's all about identifying a path from early experimentation with social to a more structured and methodical approach…Christine Gondos, Public Relations & Social Media Specialist…decided to sit down with…ORION's O3 Community Development Manager. In this session, they discuss what the role of community manager means…We are seeing research and education projects taking place across different time zones and this…is indicative of how social learning eliminates physical barriers and removes walls from the classroom!...a digital community manager can easily fall victim to stale practices - after all, anyone can blog or participate in a forum, why is my position any different? Managers must realize that their role is not about going with the flow - managers become the flow…”
7.        Soundcloud revamps site as users hit 180 million  http://www.guardian.co.uk/technology/2012/dec/04/soundcloud-revamp-180-million  “If the future of the internet is mobile, things are looking very good for Soundcloud, the Berlin-based sound-sharing site. Known as the "YouTube of audio", mobile will soon be the dominant platform for Soundcloud…"It's not a battle between video and audio, or audio and text - they are good for different things…But sound is easier to create and to listen to in parallel while doing something else. Sound doesn't need a screen." Soundcloud…has just announced that its tracks are now shared, listened to or uploaded by 180 million users every month – equivalent to 8% of the internet population…New features accessible to all users include improved recommendation, search and discovery, and automatic "follows" for bands and artists that users like…Soundcloud claims that 10 hours of audio is now uploaded every minute – with Ljung insisting that Soundcloud will eventually host more content than YouTube. Launched in October 2008, Soundcloud has attracted some high-profile VC investors including former analyst Mary Meeker…”
8.       Mary Meeker's Latest Presentation On The State Of The Web  http://www.businessinsider.com/mary-meeker-2012-internet-trends-year-end-update-2012-12?op=1  “…Mary Meeker is doing a year-end presentation on the state of the web at Stanford tonight. We have the slides of her presentation here…it's a must read for anyone in the industry, or anyone with an interest in technology…” [it truly is a must-read if you’re interested in trends on the Internet – ed.]
9.       Yahoo Acquires OnTheAir To Help It Compete With Hangouts  http://techcrunch.com/2012/12/04/yahoo-acquires-video-chat-startup-ontheair-to-compete-with-google-hangouts/  “…video chat broadcasting app OnTheAir has been acquired by Yahoo…to work on the mobile team at Yahoo…OnTheAir lets friends chat and content producers webcast single or split-screen interviews. The team could help Yahoo compete with Google Hangouts or build mobile communication apps. All of OnTheAir’s five founding teammates are joining Yahoo. They are Stanford CS Masters, former Facebook intern, and Apple iCloud employee Erik Goldman; Cooliris founding team member Josh Schwarzapel; former Meebo interaction designer Abel Allison; Gmail interaction engineer Dan Hopkins; and Apple OS X engineer Mike Kerzhner…The app lets people set up adhoc webinars that can be watched over live stream by large audiences. The real differentiator was that OnTheAir could serve as a sort of video call-in radio show for the Internet age. A host could take requests from viewers to come “onstage,” then broadcast a split screen chat with them…The deal is also fascinating as it shows how serious Yahoo is about getting into the rapid M&A game that Facebook and Google have been dominating lately…”  [two things are interesting about this; first, it’s cool and would be intriguing to know how the team of five came together to work on the startup, and second, it’s encouraging that Yahoo bought them and seems to be making a serious effort at mobile and tech innovation – ed.]
Security, Privacy & Technology Controls
10.     A Tutorial on Anonymous Email Accounts  https://www.eff.org/deeplinks/2012/11/tutorial-how-create-anonymous-email-accounts  “…When the FBI pored through the personal lives of CIA Director David Petraeus, Paula Broadwell, Jill Kelly and General John Allen, citizens across the land began to wonder how the FBI could get that kind of information, both legally and technically…how do you exchange messages with someone, without leaving discoverable records with your webmail provider? This is an important practical skill, whether you need to use it to keep your love life private, to talk confidentially with a journalist, or because you're engaged in politics in a country where the authorities use law enforcement and surveillance methods against you. The current state of anonymous communication tools is not perfect, but there here are some steps that, if followed rigorously, might have protected the Director of the CIA, the Commander, U.S. Forces Afghanistan, and their friends against such effortless intrusion into their private affairs…”
11.      Barnes & Noble Decides That Purchased Ebooks Are Only Yours Until Your Credit Card Expires  https://www.techdirt.com/articles/20121126/18084721154/barnes-noble-decides-that-purchased-ebooks-are-only-yours-until-your-credit-card-expires.shtml  “…no one would expect a physical book to be subject to the whims of the publisher or the store it was purchased from. A sale is a sale, even if many rights holders would rather it wasn't. But, Barnes & Noble doesn't see it that way…you can buy an ebook from them, but you'd better keep everything in your profile up to date if you plan on accessing your purchases…in the future…I tried to download an ebook I paid for, and previously put on my Nook, a few months ago…I got an error message stating I could not download the book because the credit card on file had expired. But, I already paid for it. Who cares if the credit card is expired?...the status of the card on file has nothing to do with my ability to download said book…This is just one more reason to…strip the drm off of the ones you purchase…Nice work, B&N. Driving another person away from your offerings…No one's purchase should be invalidated once the payment has cleared…Does B&N really wish for its customers to root their devices and strip the DRM out of their purchases just so they can enjoy them at their own pace?…”
12.     Hack could let browsers use cloud to carry out big attacks on the cheap  http://arstechnica.com/security/2012/11/hack-could-let-browsers-use-cloud-to-carry-out-big-attacks-on-the-cheap/  “Scientists have devised a browser-based exploit that allows them to carry out large-scale computations on cloud-based services for free, a hack they warn could be used to wage powerful online attacks cheaply and anonymously. The method…uses the Puffin mobile browser to push computationally intensive jobs onto a cloud-based service that was never intended for such purposes. Normally, Puffin and other so-called cloud-based browsers are used only to accelerate the loading of Web pages on mobile devices by rendering JavaScript, images, and text from disparate sources on a server and only then delivering it to the smartphone or tablet…Now, computer scientists…have demonstrated a way to abuse such services. By creating a customized browser that mimics Puffin, they were able to trick the cloud-based servers it relies on to count words, search for text strings, and carry out other tasks the service was never designed for—free and semi-anonymously…they warned less-scrupulous attackers could use similar techniques to perform powerful denial-of-service attacks and password cracks…”
13.     Raided for running a Tor exit in Austria- Accepting donations for legal expenses  http://www.lowendtalk.com/discussion/6283/raided-for-running-a-tor-exit-accepting-donations-for-legal-expenses  “…Yes, it happened to me now as well - Yesterday i got raided for someone sharing child pornography over one of my Tor exits. I'm good so far, not in jail, but all my computers and hardware have been confiscated. (20 computers, 100TB+ storage, My Tablets/Consoles/Phones) If convicted i could face up to 10 years in jail (min. 6 years)…we have nothing like the EFF here that could help me in this case by legal assistance, so i'm on my own and require a good lawyer. Thus i'm accepting donations for my legal expenses which i expect to be around 5000-10000 EUR. If you can i would appreciate if you could donate a bit (every amount helps, even the smallest)…My PayPal was limited - Please consider using Bitcoin or Bank transfer…”
Mobile Computing & Communicating
14.     Microsoft Surface Pro to start at $899 for 64GB model  http://appleinsider.com/articles/12/11/29/microsoft-surface-pro-to-start-at-899-for-64gb-model  “Microsoft…announced the pricing for its…Surface Pro tablet, starting at $899 for the entry-level 64-gigabyte version with an Intel processor and the full Windows 8 operating system. Customers will be able to double their storage to 128 gigabytes for $100 more with the $999 Surface Pro model…Surface with Windows 8 Pro will be available in January 2013. All Surface Pro models will come with a Surface Pen, Microsoft's proprietary stylus, with Palm Block technology. The hardware also features 4 gigabytes of RAM, a USB 3.0 port, and the full Windows 8 operating system…Surface Pro features a Dark Titanium VaporMg casing, dual 2x2 MIMO antennas, and a built-in kickstand…The Intel-based Surface Pro will also feature a Core i5 processor with integrated graphics to power a 10.6-inch display running at 1,920-by-1,080 pixels in a 16:9 aspect ratio. It also has a Mini DisplayPort that can power an external display up to 2,560-by-1,440 pixels. The Surface Pro is Microsoft’s attempt at creating a hybrid between a full-fledged PC and its currently available Surface RT operating system, which runs on low-powered ARM processors. Given the price points and features of the Surface Pro, Microsoft's high-end tablet hardware may be targeted as more of a MacBook Air competitor than something positioned to take on Apple's iPad…”
15.     Microsoft Surface Pro to have half the Surface RT's battery life  http://www.zdnet.com/microsoft-surface-pro-to-have-half-the-surface-rts-battery-life-7000008113/  “…does battery life matter to tablet users? Microsoft may soon find out…Surface Pros are going to get about half the battery life of the Surface RTs. Surface RTs get between eight and ten hours of battery life…For me, that'd be a deal breaker. With a tablet, I count on not having to lug a power cord around. Other readers of mine say they plan to use the Surface Pro like a PC, so they are less worried about only getting four to five hours of battery…”  [my concept of a truly ‘mobile’ computing device, which is what a tablet should be, includes a battery life of at least 8 hours; what’s the minimum battery life you require in a tablet? – ed.]
16.     E-Ink Case Turns the Back of Your Phone Into a Second Screen  http://www.wired.com/design/2012/11/popslate-e-ink-phone-case/  “Do you own a smartphone? Flip it over. What do you see? Maybe there’s a hole for a camera, a company logo…it’s essentially inert. But for Greg Moon and Yashar Behzadi, it was an opportunity to do some clever design…“We were walking back from lunch, musing, ‘Where is there a big, flat piece of real estate that we could visually configure?’” Behzadi first realized the answer: the back of a phone. From there, they created popSLATE, a case for the iPhone 5 with an e-ink screen. The innovative device is being launched on Indiegogo today…Like all e-ink screens, it only consumes power when the display is changed. This allows for an always-on ambient visual interface. What can you do with a second screen on the back of your phone? A lot, it turns out. The most basic application is personalization. You can put pictures there and other people can look at them…in early user testing people showed a lot of enthusiasm for the ability to change the look of their phone on a whim…during these exchanges, people would volunteer ideas and feature requests that dramatically expanded their thinking… ‘always on,’ in fact, represents a totally novel smartphone use model,”…popSLATE includes a photo-sharing back end to enable that…it’s a short leap to displaying notifications, maps, to-do lists, speaking notes, and anything else you can imagine that would benefit from an ambient or glance-able display…To conserve battery life, normal phone displays have to turn themselves off when they aren’t in use…When you’re reading something, if you take too long to turn the page, the phone might decide that you’re gone and turn itself off. Thanks to the e-ink display, the popSLATE allows for the opposite interaction…If you’re doing something where you want keep glancing at your screen without having to touch anything, like cooking, doing exercises, or glancing at driving directions, this is amazing…”
17.     Windows 8 Touchscreen Laptops See Slow Start  http://blogs.wsj.com/digits/2012/11/27/windows-8-touchscreen-laptops-see-slow-start/  “…Asustek Computer…said the demand ramp-up for Windows 8 touch notebooks was slow…the Asustek Vivobook…it’s the top-selling Windows 8 touch notebook on Best Buy’s website…currently $479.99…The Vivobook comes with an 11.6-inch touchscreen, Intel Core i3 processor, 4 gigabytes of memory and a 500-gigabyte hard drive…touchscreen laptops only account for less than 20% of shelf space at the moment because of their high price…Acer’s 15.6-inch Aspire V5 is the top-selling Windows 8 touchscreen laptop on Amazon’s website, with the Vivobook close behind…neither of them…breaks into the 20 best selling laptops on Amazon.com…because of the high price of touch-controlled notebooks, the vast majority of Windows 8 notebooks sold this year will not have a touchscreen…”
18.     iPad And Android Tablet Market Share Margin Narrows Much Faster Than Originally Predicted  http://techcrunch.com/2012/11/28/ipad-and-android-tablet-market-share-margin-narrows-much-faster-than-originally-predicted/  “Apple continued to win…in…tablet market share this past quarter…with a 55 percent share of all shipments during the period…it’s…the slimmest lead it’s ever had, and represents a dip of 14 percent versus the previous quarter…Shortly after the iPad’s introduction in 2010, there were predictions that Android would eventually overtake Apple’s market share in the tablet market…But early predictions tended to favor 2015 or 2016 as the crossover point at which Android tablets…would actually overtake iPad sales…Others still saw Apple dominating even longer…Android now has 44 percent of the market…a recent projection…suggests Android may take the crown as early as mid-2013, just next year…”
19.     I want a military smartphone  http://www.computerworld.com/s/article/9234188/Elgan_I_want_a_military_smartphone  “…the military wants to put smartphones in the hands of all deployed troops…their phones are going to be better than regular smartphones…that's why I want one. Smartphones are already super thin and super light…How can the industry maintain the rate of improvement and innovation of the last five years?...Flexibility will make phones more durable because they'll bend…Some phones will even be able to fold in half…The industry is also working on ubiquitous wireless charging, edge-to-edge screens…But what I really want is the military superphone…Military phones are designed ultimately with the interests of the "users" in mind -- not the interests of the cellphone makers or the service providers…For example, the military wants soldiers to be able to open a Google Maps mashup that shows the location and movements of their allies' forces. They want to make this as easy as possible, while at the same time making it difficult for enemy hackers to see the same information -- even if they get their hands on one of the devices…we consumers want…to take advantage of powerful location services without putting our privacy at risk…The military wants authorized personnel to be able to talk, text and message without the enemy intercepting those messages…But the industry wants us to use unsecure text messaging -- it costs them almost nothing, and they can charge us a lot for it. Vendors also want us to use unsecure social networks, unsecure email tools and other unsecure means of communication…The military wants phones with batteries that last a long, long time and can be charged by solar power or by hand-cranked generators…Alternative-energy solutions built into phones are viewed by the industry as unnecessary and contrary to their obsession with out-slimming the competition. The military wants indestructible, dustproof, shockproof and waterproof handsets…with standard modular plug-in hardware. The industry, in contrast, benefits financially from selling fragile phones, because when we drop them on the pavement or in the water, we have to buy new ones…the military wants phones that are always connected to the Internet…the Pentagon is looking at wireless-mesh mobile phone capabilities…I want the wireless mesh option, too. But the wireless carriers don't even want to think about that…In short, the military wants location-capable, highly secure phones that never run out of power and never lose a connection to the network. That's what I want, too…consumer products will get you closer to the military phone of the future. Secure communication, ruggedization and alternative power are the easy part. Location services with real privacy are more difficult…I look forward to the Pentagon's upcoming superphone…”
20.    Two hypervisor models for BYOD dual-identity smartphones  http://www.computerworld.com/s/article/9233834/Dual_identity_smartphones_could_bridge_BYOD_private_corporate_divide  “Late next year, consumers will be able to buy smartphones that either come with native hypervisor software or use an app allowing them to run two interfaces on the phone: one for personal use, one for work. The technology could help address an issue that has cropped up with increasing frequency at work: Employees who bring their personal mobile devices to work and use them to communicate with clients and to access corporate data…The bring-your-own-device (BYOD) trend has enabled a more efficient and mobile workforce while exposing companies to a myriad of security and data management quandaries…Next year, software and mobile device manufacturers will enable what are essentially two instances of the same OS on a smartphone…VMware and Red Bend are two of the leading software companies that have already signed OEM agreements…to create dual-identify devices…The two approaches to the smartphone virtualization market, however, are different and hinge on whether the software provider is using a Type 1 or Type 2 hypervisor. A Type 1 hypervisor is hardware-based technology that creates a second copy of the OS and runs both instances in two distinct regions of a processor. A Type 2 hypervisor runs as a guest OS on top of the host OS, not in parallel like a Type 1. The guest has to communicate through the host OS in order to access the hardware…”
21.     Cell Phones Becoming The Go-To Device for Online Activities, Banking  http://mashable.com/2012/11/26/cell-phones-becoming-the-go-to-device-for-online-activities-banking-and-more-study/  “…phones have become so much more than just calling and texting devices…people…are taking advantage of the growing number of functions that these phones can perform and there isn’t much evidence yet that the pace of change is slowing down." The study…by Pew Internet concludes that cellphone usage is increasing in basically every department, especially online activities. One in two people now check their email on their phone, up from 19% in 2007 and the number of Americans surfing the web on-the-go has doubled too, going from 25% in 2008 to 56% today. People are also starting to be less reluctant to use their phones for sensitive activities that were almost considered taboo in a recent past, like online banking. Almost one in three Americans (29%) now use their phones to check their bank account, a considerable increase from just one year ago, when only 19% did…82% of people who responded to the survey use their phones to snap pictures and 44% use it to record videos…”  [banking on a mobile device hasn’t become more secure; if anything, it’s probably less secure because on the increasing incentive for cybercriminals to target smartphones. The increasing mobile banking is simply a result of the rise in the number of people using smartphones – ed.]
22.    Roundup: Quad-core Android smartphones  http://asia.cnet.com/roundup-quad-core-android-smartphones-62219588.htm  “…Based on our experience, quad-core smartphones feel more responsive and speedier compared with dual-core and single-core models. Since these processors usually power top-of-the-line handsets, you'll be getting high-end specifications such as an HD display as well…Besides Nvidia and Qualcomm, some smartphone makers have also developed their own chipsets. For example, Samsung has its proprietary Exynos 4 Quad chipsets and Huawei's K3V2 chip powers its Ascend D1 Quad and D Quad, too. Here is a roundup of high-performance quad-core smartphones…Asus PadFone 2…HTC One X…HTC One X+…Huawei Ascend D quad…LG Google Nexus 4…LG Optimus G…Samsung Galaxy Note 2 LTE…Samsung Galaxy S III LTE…”
23.    Basis Science reveals its health-tracking wristwatch  http://venturebeat.com/2012/11/29/basis-science-reveals-its-health-tracking-wristwatch-and-fitness-web-service/  “Fitness tracking devices have invaded our lives…Basis Science is hoping to create the mother of all devices with the unveiling today of its Basis Health Tracker and accompanying cloud-based web service. The multisensor device doubles as a wrist watch, and it monitors your heart rate, sleep patterns, and how much you sweat. Then, it takes that data and presents it to you in a useful way, allowing you to keep track of your health trends over time…The $199 device uses a novel optical blood flow sensor to track your heart rate. It shines a light-emitting diode (LED) light into your skin. Then it measures the light that bounces back to see how much blood is flowing through your veins. It uses that information to calculate your heart rate. That data is what is missing from standard pedometers and fitness trackers from companies such as Jawbone, Fitbit, Nike Fuelband, and Striiv…Basis helps you become aware of your fitness with minimal effort…Basis uses a three-axis accelerometer to sense motion. That sensor captures your footsteps. As mentioned, it also captures your heart rate. A galvanic skin sensor captures your perspiration and skin temperature. The device also detects the temperature of the air so that it knows whether your skin is hot because of exercise or the weather. The device can also detect just how much impact your workout is having on your body. It captures your sleep down to the minute and figures out if you woke up at all or had a good night of uninterrupted sleep. All of that physiological data is then uploaded to a secure, cloud-based service where Basis calculates your activity — including steps taken, calories burned, sleep quality, and resting heart rate…”
24.    Smartphones and NFC: hold  onto your wallet  http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,2817,2376702,00.asp  “…the addition of an NFC (near field communication) chip to the next-gen iPhone…will allow the phone to be used as a swipe-it-yourself credit card…Bluetooth was invented in 1994 and gave rise to a lot of speculation regarding its usefulness…all sorts of futuristic uses were imagined and a serious discussion of the so-called PAN (personal area network) began…The PAN, spurred on by Bluetooth, would allow you to walk down the street and be told about sales, bargains, events and other nonsense from nearby stores and museums. You'd walk into Walmart and your name would be displayed a computerized sign to greet you as an old man pointed at the sign and then pointed at you in some creepy manner…through what I consider incompetent marketing, Bluetooth was relegated for use as a wireless earpiece technology…The PAN was dead as a doornail…good ideas can't be killed. But this "good idea" isn't about the convenience of paying with a phone swipe, but the idea of running your tab through the phone company. If you think your banker is a gouger with dubious fees and no-leeway, what do you think the phone company will be like? Yes, let AT&T handle all your money for you, and see how that works out in the end…”
25.    Toshiba intros Excite 10 SE tablet with Android 4.1, available December 6th for $350  http://gizmodo.com/5965562 “…Toshiba's...Excite tablets…newest member of the family has a lot to offer…this ten-inch tablet only costs $350…The Excite 10 SE has a 10.1-inch AutoBrite HD screen (1280x800), and a 1.5GHz quad-core Nvidia Tegra 3 processor. It has stereo speakers with SRS Premium Voice Pro…dual cameras, 16GB of built in storage, and yes, a micro SD card slot for expanding the built-in storage…It will launching running Android 4.1 (Jelly Bean), which includes Google Now, and is usually very smooth thanks to Project Butter. That said, Toshiba may put their own UI on top of it, which could slow things down. That remains to be seen. It is 0.4 inches thick and weighs 22.6 ounces. Not bad, but for $350 it's something we're definitely going to want to take a good hard look at…”
Apps
26.    Edit spreadsheets on the go with the Drive mobile app  http://officialandroid.blogspot.com/2012/11/edit-spreadsheets-on-go-with-drive.html  “…you can edit Google Sheets on your mobile device, just like you can with Google Docs. From the Drive app on your Android device, you can create a new spreadsheet or edit an existing one. You can switch fonts, resize columns, sort data, and more…like on your computer, you’ll be able to see other people’s edits in real time as they’re made. Beyond spreadsheets, you may notice a few other tweaks to the Drive app, including better text formatting when you paste from one Google document to another. And from your Android device, you can edit text within tables in documents and add a shortcut on the homescreen of your device to any specific file in Drive…”
27.    Apps Like Ditch Social-Only Signup So Privacy Buffs Can “Try Before You Pry”  http://techcrunch.com/2012/11/30/email-social-signup-rockmelt/  “Rockmelt’s recently released iPad app only offered signup through Facebook and Twitter, leading 50 percent of users not to sign in at all. So today it followed Pinterest and Spotify by moving away from social-only signup and offering email as a login option…It’s understandable why a startup wouldn’t want to offer email signup. Facebook and Twitter logins get users to give data permissions that can be used to customize a service and make it relevant and sticky right from the start. Social signup means people are already primed for sharing to their friends, which is critical to growth for a startup…it also means you don’t have to build your own identity and login systems…But these benefits come at a cost. That’s why we’ve recently seen Pinterest, Spotify, Pulse, and Turntable.fm add email login options…About 37 percent of Rockmelt users were logging in with Facebook and 13 percent with Twitter, but 50 percent of users were engaging with the service without being logged in at all…Believe it or not, some people don’t have Facebook or Twitter accounts. Others have deleted them to live a more “real” existence. Then there are those with social accounts, but who don’t want to give their most private data to just any developer…”
28.    Not All Apps Can Be Instagrams, but Someone Might Be Willing to Buy Them  http://allthingsd.com/20121129/not-all-apps-can-be-instagrams-but-someone-might-be-willing-to-buy-them/  “So you’ve built the mobile app, and you’ve got a bunch of people using it, but it’s no Instagram. Now what? It’s not as easy to raise Series A funding as it used to be, and mobile apps are a tough, hits-driven business. An emerging option is to try to sell the application. Not for $0.99 on the App Store to all comers — the whole app, to another company or developer who will take over managing it and its users…One marketplace for apps, called Apptopia, has sold more than 100 apps for a total of $388,000 in its first year, it told me this week. The Boston-based company, which is backed with more than $1 million from investors including Mark Cuban, is a sort of specialized eBay that now attracts repeat buyers and facilitates all the tricky parts of the transfer process. It takes a 15 percent fee and has experimented with different strategies, including time-based auctions and a sort of standing catalog of apps. What it really comes down to is this: People want to buy apps that have lots of users…”
SkyNet
29.    Google Bought BufferBox Because Entire Mail And Package Delivery System Is Broken  http://techcrunch.com/2012/11/30/why-did-google-buy-bufferbox-because-the-entire-mail-and-package-delivery-system-is-broken/  “…Google bought an Ontario-based company called BufferBox…it’s a Google Ventures company…Not only is package delivery a bummer…hitting up your mailbox when you get home isn’t that much fun…you come home to twenty pieces of junkmail…The mail delivery system is broken and old. It’s ripe for…disruption…The US Post Office lost $15.9B in 2012…one could say that Google wants to compete with the likes of shipping magicians like Amazon and UPS, but…This doesn’t feel like an “e-commerce” play…This is how BufferBox describes itself on its website: Today’s parcel delivery system is outdated…You’re not home during the day, so stop shipping parcels there! Ship them to your closest BufferBox instead…Google challenging the Post Office?...Sounds like it’s right up Google’s alley. What does a company have to have to take over the mail routing system? Brilliant mapping technology. One day, I could see a world where we don’t have mailmen and women coming to our houses every single day to deliver junkmail. These things can be dropped off in a box in a place that’s more convenient for you…Remember when Google bought GrandCentral? It turned into Google Voice. The service that could one day compete with the likes of AT&T and Verizon. That acquisition was led by Google’s Wesley Chan, now a partner at Google Ventures. He thinks big, so does Google…Google wants to help reshape, and evolve, the world. You’ve got Google Mail.”  http://gigaom.com/2012/11/06/so-thats-why-bufferbox-is-so-hot/ “…Amazon…is now teaming up…for its Amazon Lockers service. Both Staples and RadioShack will install these lockers in their stores, allowing customers to buy from Amazon and ship packages to these lockers and then pick them up later…there are other outlets — 7-Eleven and the grocery chain Albertsons – that are also signing up for the delivery lockers…If people are coming to stores to pick up their packages, there is some likelihood that they might pick up other goods…Silicon Valley has been abuzz about a Canadian startup, BufferBox,..There will a locker at a certain retail location, which will become your address…Once you get your package, you get an email with a PIN number and that is what you need to open the locker and get your package. BufferBox take a cut of the delivery costs…it was part of the recent graduate class of YCombinator…BufferBox lives in a crowded market – ShopRunner and Kiala…MissNev…Google, which is pushing hard to get traction for its Google Checkout service, could use something like BufferBox as a way to get more businesses to use its service…”
30.    Google Play now requiring Google+ names for user reviews  http://www.latimes.com/business/technology/la-fi-tn-google-plus-play-names-reviews-20121127,0,917303.story  “Google has begun asking users wishing to leave reviews on Google Play to start using their Google+ names. Previously, users could leave anonymous reviews for content sold on the digital store, including apps, movies, books and songs, but no more. Now, if you try to leave a review for a product, Google will send you a message saying "From now on, reviews you write will be posted publicly using your Google+ name and picture." To go ahead and write a review, you are prompted to either press "Continue" or sign up for a Google+ account if you don't already have one. Google might be making this change for two reasons. The first would be to continue promoting the Google+ social network by using another Google service as leverage. The second reason is likely to hold users accountable for the reviews they write, dissuading negative reviews posted by anonymous users…”
31.     Google updates Gmail for Android  http://www.trustedreviews.com/news/google-updates-gmail-for-android-with-auto-fit-and-improved-attachments  “Google has launched a massive update for Gmail on Android 4.0 (and above) devices…Gmail 4.2.1 has been released as an update on the Google Play store…You can now set messages to auto-fit, so you're not left panning left and right…You can also manually zoom in and out of messages through the time-honoured pinch gesture - a fairly basic feature that the otherwise excellent Gmail app has inexplicably been missing up to now…there's a new swiping gesture that can be set to either archive or delete messages (it's set to archive by default). And don't worry - there's an instant Undo key every time you initiate this command, lessening the likelihood that you'll accidentally swipe away an important email…There's a larger preview thumbnail gallery for attached photos, and tapping them brings up a full-screen viewing gallery that allows you to swipe through each image in super-quick time…” [the pinch-zoom feature is almost enough to make me want to upgrade to a current smartphone; what new feature would be needed to make you buy a new phone because your current one may not be upgradeable to that software version? – ed.]
32.    Google Announces $23M “Global Impact Awards” Program To Kickstart Nonprofit Tech Innovation  http://techcrunch.com/2012/12/04/google-announces-23m-global-impact-awards-to-kickstart-nonprofit-tech-innovation/  “…Google announced a new program called the “Global Impact Awards” to help jumpstart technology innovation in the nonprofit sector…we’re launching the Global Impact Awards to support organizations using technology and innovative approaches to tackle some of the toughest human challenges. From real-time sensors that monitor clean water to DNA barcoding that stops wildlife trafficking, our first round of awards provides $23 million to seven organizations changing the world…Here are the seven nonprofits that will benefit from the program: charity: water: Real-time technology to monitor water and ensure it gets to more people…Consortium for the Barcode of Life: DNA barcoding to identify and protect endangered wildlife…DonorsChoose.org: New program to enroll more underrepresented students in advanced classes…Equal Opportunity Schools: Data to identify high-performing yet underrepresented students…Geena Davis Institute on Gender in Media: Tools to analyze and promote gender equality in media…GiveDirectly: Mobile technology to put money directly into the hands of the poor…World Wildlife Fund: New technologies to advance anti-poaching efforts…”
33.    Google launches VetNet  http://www.mnn.com/money/green-workplace/blogs/google-launches-vetnet  “Soldiers returning home from abroad that are preparing to enter the civilian workforce are facing one of the toughest job markets in recent history…there are still millions of Americans out-of-work or underemployed, which makes competition for jobs high…the transition from military service to civilian workforce can be tricky and that is where a new Google-powered site comes in handy – VetNet. VetNet is “a career service for those who’ve served.”  Google teamed up with three nonprofit organizations that focus on veteran employment issues, Hire Heroes USA, Syracuse University’s Institute for Veterans and Military Families and Hiring Our Heroes to create VetNet. The site is free to use; veterans and their family members simply log on and with the click of a green button, they can get connected to other veterans and access a database of over one million veteran-preferred jobs. Veterans can choose classes and training sessions in three different tracks, depending on where they are in their career:  Basic Training, Career Connections and Entrepreneur…”
34.    Google patent portfolio increasing rapidly  “…a new report from Thomson Reuters…“2012 Top 100 Global Innovators,”…includes Google…the research group uses four measures of patent activity as its yardstick of innovation. The four are patent volume, patent grant success rate, global reach of the patent portfolio and citations of patents. The combination of factors seeks to take into account patent quality and the influence of patented ideas. And companies’ patents are tracked over a three-year period, with the 2012 list covering applications, grants and citations from 2009 to 2011. “So for Google, we’re looking at indigenous patents…Motorola Mobility is not in this analysis.”…Google had a high ratio of patents granted, 45 percent in the three-year period…That is impressive because there is such a backlog in patent offices, it can take up to three years before an examiner even begins to study some patent applications…high grant-success performance…means Google is making high-quality applications. Google also invests to routinely file patent applications at all the world’s major patent offices — the United States, Europe, Japan and now China…the pace of innovation is only accelerating…It is a roster of leading global companies including Apple, Boeing, Dow Chemical, Exxon Mobil, I.B.M., Intel, Microsoft, Roche, Samsung Electronics, Siemens, Sony, Toshiba and Toyota Motor. Conspicuously unrepresented on the list is China…China has become a prodigious producer of patents. But…only 6 percent of the country’s patents are filed overseas, as well as in China…”
35.    Google Chooses Kendo UI-Powered Camera App As Default For Chrome OS  http://techcrunch.com/2012/12/03/google-chooses-kendo-ui-powered-camera-app-as-default-for-chromeos/  “…Google’s Chrome OS now features a Camera app…Google’s app for its web-centric OS, of course, only uses HTML5, JavaScript and CSS to deliver a Photo Booth-like experience…this app is that it was built by third-party developer Telerik. To develop the app, Telerik used its Kendo UI front-end framework and Google’s relatively new Packaged Apps Platform, which allow developers to create standalone apps for Chrome OS…the team worked very closely with Google to develop an app that could be used as an example for other developers who are interested in writing advanced apps for Chrome OS using the Packaged Apps platform (and, of course, the Kendo UI library)…The Camera app itself offers 24 real-time photo effects like pinch, bulge, and mirror. It also features custom effects and basic face tracking. As this is a packaged app, users can access it whether they are online or offline…”
General Technology
36.    Japanese One-Person Electric Helicopter Takes Off Next Year  http://www.wired.com/autopia/2012/11/hirobo-hx-1/  “A Japanese company with plenty of experience making small, remote-controlled electric helicopters is building a human-sized version. Hirobo unveiled its single-seat electric helicopter at a technology expo in Japan and hopes to make its first flight for next year…Hirobo builds small R/C helicopters, including the battery-powered toys…The full-size HX-1 is essentially the same thing, only bigger. It uses a similar co-axial main rotor to eliminate the need for a tail rotor, and the company says it is expected to fly for as long as 30 minutes at 60 mph. The pilot uses fly-by-wire controls, or the machine can be flown remotely to aid in emergency evacuations or search-and-rescue operations. The idea is this full size R/C helicopter could be flown to the person in need, who would then be airlifted to safety…the price is said to be $375,000…The HX-1 has not yet flown, but Flight Global says “limited” hover tests have been made…”
37.    The future of lidar  http://www.economist.com/blogs/babbage/2012/11/cheap-sensors  “…Light detection and ranging (by analogy with radio detection and ranging, or radar) sweeps a laser beam over the field of view. By recording how quickly reflections return from different places, a lidar knows exactly how far away they are. The result can then be used by, for example, a robot that wishes to move around in that environment. Lidar, however, has two problems: it is bulky and it is expensive. But engineers at Vescent Photonics…have developed a lidar that they think can be shrunk to the size of a box of matches and which will…cost hundreds, rather than thousands of dollars if mass produced. Existing lidars sweep the beam mechanically…Vescent has managed to replace these moving mechanical parts with a solid-state beam-steering system. The Steerable Electro-Evanescent Optical Refractor (SEEOR), as the company dubs its invention, sends the laser beam along a glass waveguide that has a special liquid-crystal cladding. Most of the light passes through the glass but part of it, known as the evanescent wave, skims the surface of the liquid crystal. And that allows the whole beam to be manipulated…He is confident the next version of SEEOR will be able to sweep 120°, both vertically and horizontally. Its range will increase, too, from a few hundred metres to several kilometres. And its size, currently that of a paperback book, will shrink to that of a pack of cards – and ultimately to that of a matchbox…the American armed forces…plan to use it to provide electronic eyes for various types of small robots, including aerial drones and unmanned ground vehicles…Lidar is already widely used for surveying and mapping. Vescent hopes to obtain part of that market. The firm also has its sights on the collision-avoidance systems installed in top-of-the-range cars. At the moment, these employ radar. But lidar is more accurate, and it is also immune to interference from other electrical equipment. Moreover…collision-avoidance is just the start. The end will be self-driving cars…cheap, compact lidars should have applications in manufacturing and other tasks requiring accurate measurement. They might also be useful in security systems…Eventually, Dr Davis hopes, beamsteerers will be small enough to fit into devices like smartphones…Existing camera phones have already transformed people’s attitude to photography. Add a third dimension, and who knows what will happen?”
38.    FIPEL plastic light bulbs have all the benefits of LEDs, none of the downsides  http://www.extremetech.com/extreme/142086-new-plastic-light-bulbs-are-cheap-bright-shatterproof-and-flicker-free  “…scientists from Wake Forest University in North Carolina have developed plastic light bulbs that are shatterproof, flicker-free, and seem to last forever…these plastic bulbs are about twice as efficient as fluorescent bulbs, on-par with LED bulbs…These new bulbs are based on field-induced polymer electroluminescent (FIPEL) technology, with a twist. FIPEL…involves running electricity through a conductive polymer called poly(vinylcarbazole) to produce light…by doping the polymer with carbon nanotubes, Wake Forest has increased the polymer’s luminance by about five times — and voila, we’re into light bulb territory. The new device…consists of three layers of polymer/nanotube material with dielectric layers sandwiched in between. When electricity is applied, electrons excite the electroluminiscent polymer to emit light — and the carbon nanotube doping seems to increase the amount of light emitted…Carroll…has a FIPEL in his office that has worked for a decade. The most likely reason for such incredible immutability is because FIPEL produces only negligible amounts of heat — almost all of the electrical energy is converted into light. Without heat as a continual stressor, the polymer will probably remain stable for years…the plastic bulbs are cheap to make, and contain no mercury or other caustic materials…the quality of the light produced by Carroll’s FIPEL bulb is also very desirable, matching the solar spectrum perfectly…”
39.    Curiosity Rover Finds Simple Organics, But Long Path Remains to Determine Life  http://www.wired.com/wiredscience/2012/12/curiosity-salts-methane/  “In its first analysis of Martian soil, NASA’s Curiosity rover detected perchlorate salts and simple organic compounds but the probe’s science team can not yet determine if the carbon in these materials is indigenous to Mars…The rover’s instruments found water, sulfur, and chlorine-containing compounds, including chlorinated methane gas — a molecule that contains carbon. Curiosity detected these chemicals by scooping a small sample of Martian dust and heating it up slowly in a small-internal oven and then analyzing the resulting gases that get released. This was one of the first tests of the rover’s Sample Analysis at Mars (SAM) instrument…”
40.    Jeff Hawkins Develops a Brainy Big Data Company  http://bits.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/11/28/jeff-hawkins-develops-a-brainy-big-data-company/  “Jeff Hawkins has been a pioneer of mobile devices, a distinguished lecturer in neuroscience, and a published author of a revolutionary theory of how the brain works…Mr. Hawkins, who helped develop the technology in Palm, an early and successful mobile device, is a co-founder of Numenta, a predictive software company. Numenta’s technology is based on Mr. Hawkins’s theories of how the brain works…the product works off streams of real-time information from sensors…“It only makes sense to look at old data if you think the world doesn’t change,” said Mr. Hawkins…If no data needs to be saved over a long term and real-time data can stream in all the information that is needed, a big part of the tech industry has a problem. Data storage companies like EMC and Hewlett-Packard…Data analysis companies including Microsoft, I.B.M., and SAS…Much of this will be a relic within a few years, according to Mr. Hawkins…“Querying databases won’t matter as much, as people worry instead about millions of streams of real-time data.”…As new data streams in, the brain figures out if it is capturing more complexity, which requires either modifying the understanding of the original pattern or splitting it into two patterns, making for new knowledge. Sometimes, particularly if it not repeated, the data is discarded as irrelevant information…Numenta’s product, called Grok, is a cloud-based service that works much the same way. Grok takes steady feeds of data from things like thermostats, Web clicks, or machinery. From initially observing the data flow, it begins making guesses about what will happen next. The more data, the more accurate the predictions become…Mr. Hawkins put into Grok a mathematical algorithm that he says approximates the way brain cells work together, even sometimes canceling out each other’s signals to refine a sense of what’s going on…Grok is still in limited release, with just a few customers in the fields of energy, media, and video processing. So far, the company claims, Grok has delivered results that are 10 percent to 20 percent better than various benchmarks…”
41.     Windows XP drops below 40% market share while Windows 8 passes 1%  http://thenextweb.com/microsoft/2012/12/01/the-big-fight-begins-windows-xp-drops-below-40-market-share-while-windows-8-passes-1/  “…The latest market share data from…November 2012 was…Windows 8 gained…0.68 percentage points (from 0.41 percent to 1.09 percent) while Windows 7 gained just 0.02 percentage points (from 44.69 percent to 44.71 percent). Windows Vista meanwhile slipped 0.10 percentage points (from 5.80 percent to 5.70 percent) and Windows XP fell…0.84 percentage points (from 40.66 percent to 39.82 percent)…While the 1 percent share for Windows 8 is completely expected, it’s interesting to note that less than half of users have chosen to stick with the default IE10 browser…Everyone else appears to be using Chrome, Firefox, or yet another browser…Microsoft this week announced that Windows 8 sales had surpassed the 40 million mark after one month…”
42.    Cambridge to study technology's risk to humans  http://seattletimes.com/html/nationworld/2019765655_computerthreat26.html  “Could computers become more clever than humans and take over the world?...Philosophers and scientists at Britain's Cambridge University think the question deserves serious study. A proposed Center for the Study of Existential Risk will bring together experts to consider the ways in which super-intelligent technology, including artificial intelligence, could "threaten our own existence,"…"In the case of artificial intelligence, it seems a reasonable prediction that some time in this or the next century intelligence will escape from the constraints of biology,"…When that happens, "we're no longer the smartest things around," he said, and will risk being at the mercy of "machines that are not malicious, but machines whose interests don't include us…”
43.    Introduction to GIMP image editing tool with simple demos  http://www.techrepublic.com/blog/webmaster/introduction-to-gimp-image-editing-tool-with-simple-demos/2141  “If you have been searching for a new image editing tool, then the GNU Image Manipulation Program (GIMP) might be the one you need…It’s available for free for download distribution software that allows you to retouch photos, create image composition and image authoring. The current download as of this writing is GIMP 2.8.2 for Windows…Here are the basic features available: Painting features…System features…Advanced Manipulation…Extensible features…Animation features…File Handling…Customizable Interface…Photo Enhancement…”
Leisure & Entertainment
44.    All-TIME 100 Video Games  http://techland.time.com/2012/11/15/all-time-100-video-games/?iid=tl-article-moreontime  “It’s hard to imagine a world without video games. For some, they’re a simple diversion — a way to pass time. For others, they’re a portal to strange and wonderful alternate universes…From Adventure to Zork, here are our picks for the All-TIME 100 greatest video games…The Oregon Trail…Pong…Breakout…Space Invaders…Adventure…Asteroids…Pac-Man…Zork…Castle Wolfenstein…Centipede…Donkey Kong…Frogger…King’s Quest…Lode Runner…Tetris…Super Mario Bros…The Legend of Zelda…Leisure Suit Larry in the Land of the Lounge Lizards…Prince of Persia…Civilization…Sonic the Hedgehog…Mortal Kombat…Doom…Myst…SimCity 2000…Quake…Final Fantasy VII…Ultima Online…Diablo II…The Sims…Halo: Combat Evolved…Counter-Strike…Metroid Prime…Half-Life 2…Guitar Hero…The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion…Wii Sports…Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare…Mass Effect 3…” [what are your top 10 favorite video games of all time? – ed.]
45.    Online video joint venture Redbox Instant by Verizon to launch by end of year  http://gigaom.com/video/redbox-instant-pricing-device-support-launch-date/  “The online video joint venture Redbox Instant by Verizon is set to launch sometime before the end of the year. The service is currently being tested in private beta…here’s what I was able to uncover about Redbox Instant by Verizon’s current offering: Subscriptions start at $6 a month, which gives users unlimited access to the service’s subscription video catalog…An $8 a month membership adds four Redbox credits to the streaming package that can be redeemed for Redbox DVD rentals. Users will be able to reserve their DVDs…Redbox Instant also offers VOD rentals and sales of newer titles…Redbox Instant will initially be available on the web, Android and iOS devices, the Xbox 360 and select Samsung TVs and Blu-ray players…Just like Netflix, Redbox Instant is using Silverlight for streaming on the web…”
46.    Did you take part in NaNoWriMo? Lessons of National Novel Writing Month  http://www.latimes.com/features/books/jacketcopy/la-et-jc-lessons-of-nanowrimo-national-novel-writing-month-20121203,0,7098253.story  “National Novel Writing Month is over. Let National Novel Re-Writing Month begin!...National Novel Writing Month…produced…probably more than 35,000 drafts of novels that are at least 50,000 words each…“Do not edit as you go,” they counsel. “Editing is for December and beyond. Think of November as an experiment in pure output. Even if it’s hard at first, leave ugly prose and poorly written passages on the page to be cleaned up later.”…Over the last two weeks…I’ve been obsessed with a single paragraph in the book I’m writing. My first two or three attempts produced nothing but a sham of a paragraph, an embarrassment, a paragraph in name only. But it had the germ of a really good idea in it. It took six or seven attempts to create a single, 345-word paragraph that I felt good about, that didn’t make me recoil in shame…paying that much attention to detail slowed me down a lot -- this month, while everyone on NaNoWriMo was zipping past the 10,000- and 25,000-word barrier, my book project advanced by a mere 8,000…reaching the goal of 50,000 words isn’t really what NaNoWriMo is all about. That much is clear from reading discussions on what people learned about writing from NaNoWriMo. “I learned that forcing myself to write when I don't think I have any ideas is a good way to come up with ideas,” a writer from Westminster said…many of the lessons learned by NaNoWriMo writers sound like the lessons I’ve learned over the course of 25 years working as a professional…”  http://www.mediabistro.com/galleycat/nanowrimo-writers-produced-3-billion-words-in-a-month_b61755  “National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo)…writers around the world counted a collective total of 3,288,976,325 words this year–215 million more words than last year…”  http://juneauempire.com/art/2012-11-29/alaska-state-library-host-party-participants-nanowrimo#.UL4sroPO13k  “The Alaska State Library will host a “Thank God it’s over” party for NaNoWriMo participants at the Juneau Public Library on Saturday, Dec. 1…”
47.    Quitting NaNoWriMo: Why You Have To Love Your Passion Project  http://www.lifehacker.com.au/2012/11/quitting-nanowrimo-why-you-have-to-love-your-passion-project/  “At the beginning of the month, I kicked off a planned month of novel writing by taking on the NaNoWriMo project for the third time. Today is the last day of the month, and to complete it successfully I should have written a complete novel of at least 50,000 words by now. I’ve managed that twice before, but this year I abandoned the attempt…The short explanation? I was too clever for my own good. In previous years, I’ve started with nothing more than the glimmer of an idea and abandoned myself to the sheer pleasure of writing. This time around, I started with a rather different motivation: I was going to write something on a tech-related theme, so I could legitimately publish it on Lifehacker and Gizmodo over the Christmas break. That would give us some extra local content while most of the team took some time off. But…It would have to be at least potentially relevant and interesting to our audience. That was how I ended up with the concept of The Gadget Assassin. Here’s the blurb: Chris Johnson is a skilled professional killer, but he has never tackled an assignment quite like this. Johnson must locate the man who stole the plans for a top-secret smartphone, retrieve those plans and eliminate the thief. All he knows is that his target is somewhere at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas — the biggest event on the annual gadget and geek calendar. With just six days to track down a stranger in a city filled with strangers and surveillance cameras, can Johnson succeed without blowing his cover?...It had gadgets, it had a glamorous Vegas location, it had action-adventure potential. What it didn’t actually have was a motivated writer. I’m not a big fan of action thriller style novels, and that proved to be the issue. I ploughed through the first 15,000 words, but I didn’t enjoy any of it…With those constraints in place, it was a chore, every single time. After nine days, I had to admit the truth: I didn’t want to write this novel…with a third of the month gone, I also didn’t have the time or the energy to start a whole new title either. For 2012, the NaNoWriMo adventure was over. The lesson is that in passion projects, it’s the passion that’s important, not the commercial potential…”  [if you decided to participate in NaNoWriMo, would you develop a detailed plot before Nov 1 with the subject or type of book chosen for commercial potential, or would you start out with a much more passion-focused approach? Maybe just a vague concept of what you’ll write about, maybe write the first chapter for three or four different books to see which one took hold of you, maybe look to current events or the world around you for inspiration? Perhaps tonight at NEW NET, the inimitable R.H. Watson can share his process of preparing for the 1st of November – ed.]
48.    Dev Version of Android-Based Ouya Game Console Ships Dec. 28  http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,2817,2412738,00.asp  “The Android-based Ouya game console is well on its way to becoming a reality. The team behind the record-breaking Kickstarter project is looking to ship an early version of the console and controller to developers by year's end. "On December 28, they leave the factory and should arrive within a couple of days…Ouya stressed that the consoles are an "early version" of the gadget that are "designed for developers to test their games on Ouya." Ouya will be shipping this version of the console to the more than 600 people who paid more than $699 on Kickstarter to back the project. A few lucky developers without such deep pockets, however, might still be able to nab an early Ouya. "The dev consoles aren't cheap for us to make. And we heard from many of you during the Kickstarter campaign that you simply couldn't afford one," Ouya said. "We wish we could just give them away, and we decided for a few of you – we'd do just that! But you have to work for 'em...check out our Dev Console Giveaway for more details."…Ouya emerged this summer with a Kickstarter campaign aimed at developing a sub-$100, Android-powered video game console that offers free-to-play titles…it looked to raise $950,000 in 30 days, but by the end of day one, it had surpassed $1 million. Eventually, it closed with more than $8.6 million…”
Economy and Technology
49.    Sixth class for Start-Up Chile has 105 companies  http://startupchile.org/word-is-out-here-are-the-105-new-suppers/  “After receiving more than 1400 applications during the sixth application period that ended on October 8th, Start-Up Chile announces that 105 startup companies have been selected to be part of the world-recognized acceleration program’s sixth generation…the 105 chosen startups call more than 31 different countries home and represent a myriad of industries…The most frequently represented countries are: USA (24%), Chile (19%), Argentina (9%), and India (7%). We are happy to welcome entrepreneurs coming from countries as diverse as Morocco, Ukraine, Pakistan and the Netherlands! E-commerce is the most strongly identified industry (24% of the selected), which is then followed by Mobile & Wireless (10%), Media (10%), IT & Enterprise Software (10%) and Social Media & Social Networks (10%). Remaining categories include Education, Energy & Clean Tech, Finance, Natural Resources, Social Enterprise and Tourism…” [the article lists the companies and their product or service – ed.]
50.    Open Source Entrepreneurship Tools  http://steveblank.com/2012/11/27/open-source-entrepreneurship/  “One of the great things about being a retired entrepreneur is that I get to give back to the community that helped me. I assembled this collection of free and almost free tools, class syllabi, presentations, books, lectures, videos in the hope that it can make your path as an entrepreneur or educator easier. Free…If you’re building a startup, the Startup Tools tab on the top of this page has curated links to hundreds of startup resources.  Specific links are…Market research tools to help you figure out the size of the opportunity your startup is pursuing, are here…Some of the best advice on founding and running a startup from other smart voices are here…” [this post by Steve Blank is an excellent collection of links for the aspiring or early stage entrepreneur – ed.]
51.     Staples Announces In-Store 3-D Printing Service  http://www.wired.com/design/2012/11/staples-goes-3-d/  “…A new service called “Staples Easy 3D” will allow customers to upload their designs to Staples’ website, then pick up the printed objects at their local office supply megastore, or have them shipped to their home or business — not unlike the photo- and document-printing service the company already offers…3-D printer manufacturer Mcor Technologies…is partnering with Staples to provide its new Iris printers for the service. The Iris printers employ an innovative method to generate objects, using reams of paper that are cut and printed while being stacked and glued together. This technique allows for a high-resolution layer thickness of 100 microns, similar to that of the MakerBot Replicator 2, but not quite as fine as the 25-micron capability of the Form 1. The new printers also incorporate the ability to add photorealistic coloring — something that more common plastic printers can’t yet achieve…while the glued paper is said to have a wood-like hardness, the arrangement of the layered paper grain will require special consideration for certain design layouts…its material properties are unknown compared to traditional materials like real wood or steel…the move by an established corporation to offer 3-D printing further legitimizes the adoption of the rapidly growing field by the mass market. Similar services currently exist, being offered by companies like Shapeways and Sculpteo, but this is the first to be made available from a chain retailer…”
52.    Why We’re Pivoting from Mobile-first to Web-first  http://philosophically.com/why-were-pivoting-from-mobile-first-to-web-first  “…I wanted to share my perspective, having been the co-founder of a mobile-first startup for the past year and a half…and have tried two mobile-first free social products. However, for our next product, we are going web-first and charging out of the gate. Ads are the Internet’s tax on users who want free apps and websites. All free apps and services have ads. I consider virtual goods like ads because everything I’m going to say about ads is also true for virtual goods…ad-based services target lower-income and lower-education audiences because that’s where they make all of their money…Advertising-based companies need lots of data to win advertiser dollars away from television and newspapers…To gather enough data to be statistically significant to advertisers, as well as to achieve the scale necessary to have a large enough lower-income and lower-education audience to click on ads, all ad-based companies must grow very large user bases. They also have to grow their user base fast in the early days of the company…So advertising-based companies have to grow very large, very fast in order to support their free product…Let me share with you some rough numbers from our mobile-first startup…At best, we retain 5% of users through the entire onboarding process…We are not alone on that count…All in all, mobile service apps turn out to be a horrible place to close viral loops and win at the retention game. Only a handful of apps have succeeded mobile-first…You have an entirely different onboarding story on the web. You can test easily, cheaply, and fast enough to make a difference on the web…”
53.    Four way dogfight: Google, Apple, Facebook and Amazon  http://www.economist.com/news/21567361-google-apple-facebook-and-amazon-are-each-others-throats-all-sorts-ways-another-game  “…the battle lines between the four large companies seen as dominating the consumer internet—Google, Apple, Facebook and Amazon—are in furious flux…Three of the big four are still run by men who made their billions as founder, or co-founder, of their empires—Amazon’s Jeff Bezos, Google’s Larry Page and Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg…although Jobs no longer rules Apple, he groomed Tim Cook, his successor as chief executive. “In the modern history of technology we have never seen such a highly engaged group of chief executives and founders,”…Nor has the industry ever seen such young and feisty firms…with so much financial firepower. Each…has developed a powerful business model. Google has turned search into a huge money-spinner by tying it to advertising. Facebook is in the process of doing something similar with the way people’s interests and relationships are revealed by their social networks. Amazon has made it cheap and easy to order physical goods and digital content online. And Apple has minted money by selling beautiful gadgets at premium prices…All four grew up when computing was basically something done at a desk or on a laptop with the programs you had to hand…As the web becomes something that lives through and on the phone, and software something handled in a cloud, the clear lines that once defined territories and strategies are blurring…the battle between the big four…will have the greatest impact in future on the way people find information, consume content and purchase all kinds of stuff…Apple and Google are crossing swords in operating systems for smartphones and tablet computers; both firms and Amazon are butting heads in hardware; Google and Facebook have become sworn enemies in social networking; some of the other protagonists even have designs on e-commerce, which has long been Amazon’s stronghold…Some experts think Amazon also poses a threat in this battle to find things. “Google used to be the toll-taker, directing people to Amazon…Now people are increasingly bypassing it and going straight to Amazon to find and buy stuff.”Forrester…reckons that 30% of America’s online shoppers begin their search for a product at Amazon…While Apple fights Google on one border, it fights Amazon on another, where the battle is to be the best provider of online content…The most hard-fought battle between them so far has been in the e-book market…In digital music, the tables are reversed, with Amazon’s Cloud Player music service struggling to make a dent in iTunes…In video both firms are trying to make headway against Netflix…Google’s YouTube business dominates the world of user-generated video, but the company has struggled to develop a compelling alternative to both Amazon’s digital fare and iTunes. In March it finally brought together its disparate offerings in music, e-books and other areas as part of a new online store, dubbed Google Play…The…titans…seek to provide the best mobile experience. Here there is a three-way fight between Apple, Amazon and Google, which have each developed rival combinations of mobile gadgets, operating systems and app stores…Where Apple used iTunes to sell iPods, Amazon uses its tablets to sell everything else in the world…Google Nexus tablets…are made by Asus and Samsung. And it has…begun selling cheap notebooks using not Android but another of its operating systems, Chrome…analysts expect Google to churn out relatively cheap devices in the hope that buyers will use them to access its search and other services, thus seeing the ads on them…Google is experimenting with a service that would let folk find goods online, order them and have them delivered within a day…Google is looking for partnerships with shipping companies and retailers…But…it may ultimately have to buy a logistics firm. At $69 billion UPS has a market value less than a third of Google’s…the battlefields…multiply every quarter—mobile wallets, cloud computing and who knows what else—picking out the strategic shifts over the tactical setbacks is hard…Google+, Google’s latest attempt to lay siege to Facebook, has its flaws. Apple was woefully under-prepared for its assault on Google Maps. But…they have to make bold bets, and in both cases they have at least gained some sort of beachhead. The challenge the firms face is to move beyond the initial disappointment cannily enough to turn the openings into successes…that looks likely to be great news for consumers, who will be able to choose from an ever wider range of innovative and cheap (or free) technologies…”
54.    Everything is eating software  http://radar.oreilly.com/2012/11/to-eat-or-be-eaten.html  “…Marc Andreessen’s…investment thesis: everything is becoming software. Music and movies led the way, Skype makes the phone company obsolete, and even…Fedex and Walmart are all about software…he’s mostly right. But…I see a much bigger world than just software…the biological revolution could be even bigger than the computer revolution…And we’re following the “Internet of Things” (and in particular, the “Internet of Very Big Things”) very closely…software will be a component of every (well, almost every) important new technology…but it’s not about the software…shortly after buying our house, we had the furnace repairman over 7 times during the month of November…rather than waiting for me to notice that the house was getting cold at 2AM, it would have been nice for a “smart furnace” to notify the repairman, say “I’m broken, and here’s what’s probably wrong.”…data can be used for everything from performance optimization to detecting problems…synthetic biology is basically nothing more than programming with DNA, using a programming language that we don’t yet understand and for which there is still no “definitive guide.”…but we are certainly going to get there. And the consequences will be profound…software will be a component of everything we do or buy, from our clothing to our food. Why is the FitBit a separate device? Why not integrate it into your shoes?...I’ve had discussions about genetically engineered food that would diagnose diseases and turn different colors in your digestive track to indicate cancer and other conditions…software has disrupted, and will continue to disrupt, just about every industry on the planet…health care and education as the next industries to be disrupted…We just need to push his conclusion farther…With both SpaceX and Tesla Motors, Elon Musk has proven that it’s possible for the right entrepreneur to take insane risks and make headway…Neither SpaceX nor Tesla are Facebook-like “consumer web” startups, nor even enterprise software startups or education startups. They’re not “software” at all, though they’ve both certainly eaten a lot of software to get where they are…”
55.     Dwolla: ditching the ‘chicken and egg’  http://blog.dwolla.com/guest-checkout/  “As of today…You no longer need a Dwolla account to checkout online…We are introducing Dwolla Price, a discount for paying with Dwolla…Dwolla’s mission in life is…to create the ideal exchange…many of the processes and structures needed to create this experience aren’t possible with current networks (e.g. fraud, accessibility, and costs)…Today…is about addressing one of our own shortcomings: the “chicken or the egg” dilemma. This metaphor is meant to explain the difficulty in establishing a mutual connection between two parties in order to transact inside a network. For example, merchants that accept American Express are dependent on whether or not their customers hold an American Express card, and vice versa. Likewise, Dwolla merchants have been dependent on whether or not their customers have a Dwolla account to pay with Dwolla. This “members-only” mentality contains and limits the payment experience, but has been a hallmark of the electronic payment industry…we’ve been hard at work improving Dwolla in order to open our network and set it free. You no longer need a Dwolla account to checkout online…with Dwolla’s new guest checkout integration option, anyone can use Dwolla to make a one-time payment from his or her financial institution to an online merchant or marketplace…”
56.    The Ultimate Hack: How one programmer got the job he wanted by persistence and breaking rules  http://blog.vidyard.com/the-ultimate-hack-how-our-newest-growth-hacke  “…I was out of school for more than a year with a few failed business ideas under my belt and was not having any luck getting a startup job through conventional means. Fed up, I took an unconventional approach when applying to Vidyard. It took 5 months, 9 interviews, and hundreds of hours spent on learning how to code, preparing presentations and writing case studies…There were many times when I felt like I was never going to reach my goal of being a part of the Vidyard team. Here's my story:  I graduated from the University of Toronto in June of 2011 and spent about 6 months testing out some business ideas (they all failed). In January 2012 I started to look at joining a startup in the valley (California) and spent another 6 months interviewing at companies both large and small…I first heard about Vidyard and their growth hacker opening…from a friend. The posting said that they were looking for someone with either a ton of experience or someone who was hungry and able to learn fast. That second bit really resonated with me and I sent in my resume and cover letter the next day…One week later: nothing. So I sent Michael Litt (CEO and Co-Founder) an email… but that didn’t work either…It was at this point that most people…would have given up and moved on to another company. However, I was too frustrated after being turned down everywhere else…and realized that on paper, I didn’t look too great…I was still very interested in Vidyard because of the opportunity to learn and grow at a hot startup…I think the most important thing I did to get the job was push just a little bit further when things looked the worst…The first thing I did was start a blog where I would analyze some aspect of Vidyard’s marketing and discuss what I would do instead…I published an article every other day for two weeks and would notify Michael and Devon with a tweet. This approach landed me a day of interviews at Vidyard HQ where Michael also had me prepare a marketing case study for the company. Mike: The tweets worked. I thought “An independent (and pretty smart dude) writing content about improving my business? This guy is worth talking to.” Devon: I remember…seeing the title of the Blog - was very impressed that someone had put together something directed specifically at us…Amar: Although the blog got me in the door, it most certainly wasn’t enough to land me the job…I followed up weekly for 4 weeks but couldn’t get a response from Michael…I decided to send a final email but I didn’t word it like the traditional  “thanks for the opportunity”…note. This is what I wrote…Just to be crystal clear, I'm still interested in working at Vidyard and since I see it as a huge learning opportunity, I'm even willing to work for free for a period of time…I'm still really interested in growth/distribution hacking and committed to learning more every day so Michael, I would really appreciate it if you could recommend me to some other companies like we discussed when we met last month at the Tannery…Mike:…The honesty of this message really hit home - he had applied himself so much and definitely deserved a chat with my co-founder…Amar was persistent enough to keep talking to - he lacked any and all experience we were looking for but had already consistently proven that he was willing to learn. Amar: I got a response almost immediately…I was on thin ice and I really needed to impress Devon so instead of just speaking with him on the phone, I decided to do a webinar on marketing at Vidyard. The night before our talk, I sent Devon an email notifying him of the change in plans and I delivered the presentation over Google Hangouts the next morning. Looking back, I’m not sure if he was impressed or not but I knew that, once again, I went above and beyond what was expected of me…”
57.     9 Tech Trends That Will Make Someone Billions Of Dollars Next Year  http://www.businessinsider.com/billion-dollar-tech-trends-2012-11?op=1  “…2012's four big trends will get bigger next year: mobile, social, cloud, and big data. Market-research company IDC has gone one further, predicting how these trends will unfold next year—to the tune of billions of dollars…Tech will grow insanely fast in emerging countries…When it come to mobile, 2013 will bring us these three things: Mini tablets with screens less than 8 inches in size will be the rage, accounting for 60% of tablets sold. The market for smartphones and tablets combined will grow by 20%...Everyone will become an IT person…People who don't work as IT professionals have taken over the job of buying tech for the company: their own mobile devices, file-sharing clouds, and social apps. Some people call this the Dropbox effect. Companies like Box, Asana, and Yammer built their business models on it…non-IT business managers will buy 80% of new tech directly for their teams…Big data will get bigger…big data will be the thing everyone will use in 2013. IDC says the big-data market will grow at an annual rate of 40%…”  [one way to look at trends is how one can benefit from the trend; these IDC trend predictions have several areas which merit discussion and opportunity evaluation; areas of high interest to me include (1) ‘insanely fast tech growth in emerging countries, (2) mini tablets being 60% of the tablet market, (3) 20% market growth for smartphones and tablets, (4) the combination of the Dropbox effect and the BYOD movement, and (4) 40% growth rate for big data. Now I just need my 150 Network, a.k.a. 20/20 Network, a.k.a. Follow The Sun Team for me to work on identifying and capitalizing on those trends, especially for residual revenue… - ed.]
58.    A Bunch Of Students Think They Have Found The Next Mark Zuckerberg  http://www.businessinsider.com/a-bunch-of-students-think-they-may-have-found-the-next-mark-zuckerberg-2012-12  “…early stage VC firm First Round Capital announced a new ploy to find the next Mark Zuckerberg. It threw $500,000 into an initiative called The Dorm Room Fund (DRF) and gathered eleven student investors at Drexel and UPenn…First Round's reasoning was that a lot of successful entrepreneurs started businesses in their dorm rooms…the student investors say they think they've found someone with Zuckerberg or Gates potential: 21-year-old Dan Shipper. Shipper is DRF's first investment, and he's been granted $20,000 to see his startup, Firefly, through…Shipper was opposed to taking outside capital. But DRF allows him to build his startup while staying in school, which is all the philosophy major really wants…In May, he was publicly recruited by a Y Combinator startup, 42Floors. The founder, Jason Freedman, wrote Shipper an offer letter with "no expiration,"…I do a lot of coding. I started learning to code when I was in fifth grade because the only way you can build a viable business as a 10-year-old is to know how to code…In high school I started developing BlackBerry apps right before the iPhone came out in 2006. No one really knew what an app was so I started doing BlackBerry software development. The first app I made was called FindIt. I kept losing my BlackBerry in my house, and it would be on silent so I couldn't call it. FindIt made it so if I lost my BlackBerry in my house, I could just email it and it would ring even if it was on silent. I eventually iterated that into a full-fledged web interface where you could completely control your BlackBerry from the Internet. You could track it, you could make it call you, you could lock it, you could make it display a message and you could back it up completely. It was actually tested by the U.S. Army for use on Army BlackBerries…In terms of Jason Freedman, I tweeted him about six months ago and said, "I want to talk, I'd love to get some advice." We are both frequent readers of Hacker News…I admired Jason because of his writing style and the popularity of his posts so I wanted to get advice about blogging and entrepreneurship in general. He called me while I was in class and we ended up talking for a long time. He's been a really great resource for me and he's just a really good guy…”
Design / DEMO
59.    Building a Design-Driven Culture  http://blog.capwatkins.com/building-a-designdriven-culture  “Lately, it seems like every company is presenting themselves as design-driven. They tout accomplishments like hiring a designer as part of the first set of employees, striving for simple and straightforward user experiences and deploying visually beautiful sites and apps that garner first-glance kudos from Dribbble and the tech press. This promise of design-led culture is pushed with high frequency on design job boards and recruiting emails…The problem is that being design-driven doesn’t simply mean caring about user experience or stunning look-and-feels…It doesn’t mean more wireframes or user research or having a design blog. Being design-driven means treating design as a partner (and a leader) in the product creation process…Are there major initiatives and ideas that were generated directly from your designer or design team? If yes, was design in the room when the other items were created and prioritized? Congratulations, you’re design-driven…many companies hire designers, but still treat that part of their product as a resource instead of a thought-leader. And even if a company starts out as design-driven, it’s all too easy to lose that as you grow the team…”
60.    Getting Back to Doing: Industrial Designer Yves Behar  http://www.wired.com/design/2012/10/yves-behar-on-doing/  “In 1999, designer Yves Behar founded the design and branding firm Fuseproject…his collaborations with notable companies and causes have resulted in stylish products that meld unique form with useful and well thought out features…In my late teens design became an obsession, as I realized that I could express myself through the medium. Much later, when I founded Fuseproject in 1999, our slogan became ‘design brings stories to life.’”…design is at the center of brands. We fuse many disciplines of design, from branding to naming, digital UI and product design, packaging and communications, to build unique products and brands that are cohesive…We developed what we call ‘design venture,’ which has allowed us to become partners and do better long-term work.” On what he’s doing next: “I am working on re-thinking the office, both the physical and digital parts of being at work. We are also going to see our Sodastream projects in store this year, and working on the next generation as well…”  [listen to his video –ed.]  http://www.wired.com/design/2012/09/ff-designmanifesto/  “An object is no longer something you merely consume. It’s something you create…Yves Behar explains why this…is a revolution in the making…What will liberate design? Our tools, for one; they are increasingly cheap, powerful, and available to all. Design no longer signifies high priests at their drafting tables but rather you and me at our computers: 3-D printers are the new inkjets, and the age of desktop publishing is fast becoming the age of desktop manufacturing…Autodesk is helping by creating tools and services that it hopes will power the maker movement. And Etsy is…helping its sellers manufacture their wares on a larger scale…”
61.     Chat With 99Designs Founder Matt Mickiewicz  http://mashable.com/2012/11/14/live-chat-announcer-99designs/  “…As part of the Young Entrepreneur Council’s #StartupLab initiative, a virtual mentorship program, Mickiewicz will appear live via video chat broadcast on this site. Matt Mickiewicz co-founded 99designs, which has hosted more than 130,000 design contests and paid out more than $30 million to designers…#StartupLab is a free virtual mentorship program created by The Young Entrepreneur Council (YEC), an invite-only nonprofit organization comprised of over 500 of America’s most successful young entrepreneurs who have, collectively, generated tens of thousands of jobs and hundreds of millions of dollars in revenue…”
62.    Going For “Pretty First” Is Wrong: A Designer’s Take On App Development  http://techcrunch.com/2012/11/24/a-designers-take-on-app-development-pretty-first-is-wrong/  “Chloë Bregman is a product designer working on a new communications startup…Startup founders often ask me to take their app ideas and make them pretty. They feel that they need a beautiful product in order to get funding. I call this “pretty first,” and it’s when a startup focuses on creating a visually beautiful design for an app before determining whether the product has purpose and is useful…“pretty first” is the wrong approach. If your product is not useful and engaging, it doesn’t matter how pretty it is…Many today are chasing a visually beautiful style without necessarily hammering out the problem that their product solves. The attention they pay to design has led to a newfound enthusiasm for white space, grid patterns, and typographically led designs…The look of Web 2.0 is dead. It’s quickly being replaced by “clean design,” which is reminiscent of the Swiss style of graphic designs from the 1950s, embodies many of the principles of the Bauhaus movement…With all this attention on the visual aspects of products, are we ending up with products that function better? In the chase for perfect pixels…we are seeing long-standing products undergo redesigns that don’t make them function better and, at times, even makes them less functional. The great Gmail redesign of 2012 has led to user outrage and confusion, partly because it more strongly focuses on “clean design” principles over user benefit and behavior…Focus on the benefit to the user. What’s the user problem and how do you solve it?...Come up with a basic design, build a basic app, and hand it off to users. Spend minimal time on what it looks like. Before you’ve resolved the core issues in your app, don’t waste cycles on visual design. If you need help from a designer, reach out to an interaction designer or a product designer. You don’t need a visual designer pumping out pretty pixels. You may need someone to help you clarify how to make your product work and accomplish it in a simple and engaging way…”
DHMN Technology
63.    The ultimate low-cost Arduino-compatible dev board for classes  http://hackaday.com/2012/11/10/the-ultimate-low-cost-dev-board/  “…microcontroller dev boards…are a great way to learn about the wonders of controlling electricity with code…if you’re teaching a class on programming microcontrollers, giving each student a $20 board is nearly out of the question…the shrimp…a very, very minimal Arduino-compatible circuit meant to control all the pins on an ATMega328. The components only cost about £1.40 ($2.25 USD) when bought in volume, making it perfect for teaching a class or workshop on the Arduino…The basic circuit is just an ATMega328 – the same microcontroller used in the Arduino Uno – with a few caps, resistors, and a 16 MHz crystal. It’s a very bare-bones system, but…provides all the functionality of a $25 Arduino…The Shrimp team is using a CP2102 USB to UART bridge to program each shrimp. Not an inexpensive part, but it is…possible to only have one serial bridge for each workshop.…”
64.    2BEIGH3 – Open Source Hybrid System  http://3dprintingindustry.com/2012/11/27/2beigh3-open-source-hybrid-system/  “Following Joshua Johnson’s illuminating article focusing on developments in hybrid additive/subtractive fabrication systems another entry-level system of this nature has come to light here on 3DPI — the rather cleverly named 2BEIGH3 (or 2×3 or 2 by 3 – get it?). Instructables carries a lengthy ‘how to make your own 2D CNC machine that converts into a 3D Printer’ post on this combination machine…First and foremost it is an entry-level printer, based on the FDM process, that can print a greater range of materials than the typical ABS or PLA. It can print nylon materials. This is significant in that it brings new material properties, and by extension a greater range of applications, to users…“Nylon and its derivative polymers have some great features that can be modified with fill density and layer height.  Imagine being able to print a permanent coffee filter, bearings that need no lubrication, pliable IPhone cases, extremely tough bands that are so flexible you can tie them in a knot and they’ll still support 200lbs!”…the machine has been developed with a primary goal being quick and easy configurations between CNC – 3DP – CNC and back again…”
65.    Oculus Rift: Update on Developer Kit Technology  http://www.oculusvr.com/blog/update-on-developer-kit-technology-shipping-details/  “When we launched our Kickstarter campaign in August, we hoped to sell a few hundred kits to game developers and virtual reality enthusiasts around the world. Instead, we were blown away by the overwhelming response from a community of almost 10,000 backers, who raised nearly $2.5 million dollars to help us develop the Oculus Rift…We’re happy to be able to finally announce that the Oculus Rift developer kits will begin shipping in March 2013…One of the toughest challenges was finding the right display for mass production. Many of you already know that the Oculus Rift prototypes we’ve been showing use a 5.6’’ LCD. While not perfect, it’s been sufficient for early research and development, including the work John Carmack did with DOOM 3: BFG Edition. Unfortunately, production of that display was recently discontinued…Ultimately, we selected a modern, 1280×800 7’’ display for the developer kit. The bright side is that the new display beats the old display in almost every key area including response time, switching time, contrast, and color quality. The improved switching time of the panel actually alleviates most of the motion blur people saw in earlier prototype demos…The original Oculus Rift prototypes used an off-the-shelf sensor from one of the leading sensor vendors in the country. While the original sensor was high quality, we made the decision to develop our own 9DOF motion sensor that excels in VR-critical areas…The new Oculus sensor supports a refresh rate of up to 1000hz, which is several times faster than the previous sensor. In addition to the accelerometer and gyroscope, it also includes a magnetometer, which opens new doors in terms of sensor data and head-tracking…”
66.    3D Printer User Profile: Andrew Plumb  http://blog.makezine.com/2012/11/26/make-interviews-andrew-plumb/  “With the publication of our Ultimate Guide to 3D Printing we learned about a growing number of hackers and makers who use the technology while on the job or just tinkering. We’ll be interviewing some of these folks to learn how they use 3D printers. Andrew Plumb of Ottawa, ON, is a good person to start with. He’s been a contributor to open source 3D printing technology as an active MakerBot Google group and Thingiverse participant. He even owned the 9th MakerBot! Let’s find out what Andrew has to say…JB: What difficulties and successes did you encounter while setting up your 3D printing workshop? AP: Being more of a Mac (personal) and Linux (day-job) guy than Windows, figuring out fully-functional open source software CAD/CAM tool chains has been (and continues to be) the biggest challenge. There are *so* many different 3D file formats, solid modelling tools, CGI mesh editors and Applications, and not all of them dump out simple STL data, let alone a manifold, 3D printable mesh. Only once you have a favourite tool chain worked out for your own designs does it start to get easier to figure out how to work with other people’s works. Relatively few have taken their designs all the way thru to 3D printed realization, so there’s a significant amount of mutual hand-holding involved, dealing with the quirks of their software modelling tool choices…”
67.    Printing new 3D ears  “…a Dutch medical researcher, Ernst Jan Bos…is using the Ultimaker 3D printer to create “scaffolding” upon which new human body parts may one day be grown. Using adult stem cells taken from a patients, new body parts can be grown and then grafted onto the patient. Ernst Jan Bos (in Dutch) is experimenting with ears, with burn patients in particular in mind…Dr. Anthony Atala of the Wake Forest Institute for Regenerative Medicine explains the groundbreaking work he has been involved with…The limitations…placed upon Wake Forest are many fold. Skilled technicians, doctors, and researchers are scarce, so is funding and the necessary, specialized equipment needed to explore and clinically implement regenerative medicine. This is why Ernst Jan Bos’ proposal is important – the augmenting of large institutions like Wake Forest, with a more widely distributed network of researchers drawing from an increasingly expanding “maker” community…”
68.    Bootstrap your electronics projects on circuits.io  http://blog.circuits.io/post/36740852617/bootstrap-your-electronics-projects-on-circuits-io  “At circuits.io we want to revolutionise how people design, manufacture and buy electronics. Up until today, we have been focusing on rethinking the tools used to design electronics. Instead of expensive and complex desktop software, circuits.io allows you to design electronics in your browser using an intuitive design process that pushes the boundaries of electronics design software…Today we announce the next step in our plan: Ordering fully assembled electronic boards on circuits.io…we decided to created “Bootstrap Campaigns”. This allows you to take your design on circuits.io (or even your own Gerber files), and create a funding campaign for it…Think of this as a “Kickstarter” or “Indiegogo” specialized in electronics, with that difference that we not only help you find funding for your project, but also get your project manufactured and shipped to your supporters…Our goal is to make you successful…Circuits.io will even give you the manufacturing contacts so you can set up your own supply chain. Or you can decide to stay with us and use circuits.io for manufacturing-as-a-service. Our first amazing Bootstrap Campaign is also available today: a Raspberry Pi robotic shield…”  http://electronics.stackexchange.com/questions/50260/open-source-project-hosting-tools-specifically-for-hardware-design  “I'm finishing up on my senior project of home automation, and after the year of research I noticed there isn't any collaborative system for open source hardware for home automation, so I'm starting one…I have seen some open source hardware websites, but I feel they lack the ease similar to Google Code, SourceForge, github, and other software hosting tools…it would be really cool to have a embedded schematic image generator for posting pieces of schematic on the forum. I want people to be able to use a variety of schematic, layout, simulation, and other tools(so far seems impossible), and contribute to the same project. It would be really cool if multiple people could contribute to the same schematic, but different places and push them to a repository where it would merge the different schematic portions together.I definitely want people to be able to use free tools to contribute. My overall long term goal…is to have an inexpensive project collaborative environment for people to develop inexpensive projects…”  http://www.circuits.io/  http://upverter.com/  http://iut-tice.ujf-grenoble.fr/kicad/  http://www.linear.com/designtools/software/  http://solderpad.com/ 
69.    Next Year’s 3-D Printers Promise Really Big Things  http://www.wired.com/design/2012/11/big-3d-printers-euromold-2012/  “2012 has been a big year for 3-D printing…the innovations are impressive — for every new plywood-clad 3-D printer kit that makes the rounds on the internet, engineers are developing ways to print titanium parts for jet engines that will change the aerospace industry…The 3-D printing industry is on track to be a $3.1 billion business by 2016…The big news out of Euromold is really big — a 3-D printer so large that it requires a palette jack to unload. The newest 3-D printer from Objet combines their world-class accuracy (16 micron/0.0006 inch layer thickness) and the ability to create models with 14 materials in one print job with extraordinary size. The new Objet 1000 is named for its 1000 x 800 x 500 mm (39.3 x 31.4 x 19.6 inches) print area which is over three times the size of competitive printers…”
70.    Rise of 3D Printing  http://thenextweb.com/magazine/2012/11/30/the-rise-of-3d-printing/  “…The rise of 3D printing holds a lot of promise for those of us who can focus and visualise what we might make…3D printing might not be available in all homes yet, but the latest desk-top 3D printers being us one step closer to the possibility of manufacturing more things for ourselves…Anderson’s book, “Makers” also came out recently. It outlines ways in which people are making products for themselves already and 3D printing plays a big part in the inspiration for more people to get involved…companies helping people print in three dimensions today are pushing the boundaries for heavy industry and small businesses to design and create some pretty amazing things…Shapeways has since printed and sold more than a million user-created objects from the delightfully silly to the practical and extraordinarily beautiful…“We can currently print up to the size of a bedside table or a chair. I think that will get larger as we are growing but of course as you get bigger the cost also grows. We can work with 30 different materials, which by most designers’ feedback is incredible.”…Maxim Lobovsky, David Cranor, and Natan Linder met as graduate students at the MIT Media Lab in 2009 as classmates in MIT’s legendary How To Make (almost) Anything class…Lobovsky has been working in the field of 3D printing for some time including open source DIY 3D printers like the Fab at Home project. He says that he is spurred on by the future possibilities…I think we’ve still only scratched the surface of what’s possible when it comes to demand,” he says. Form Labs leapt into the limelight online with the phenomenal success of its Kickstarter campaign. The company set out with a $100,000 goal and received $2,945,885 by the time the campaign closed…“We call our product the first prosumer 3D printer, I definitely don’t think this is a consumer product…But to me it’s a continuum between the most advanced high end users and aerospace companies, things like that and the consumer…If you talk to big 3D printer companies they’ll talk about working with NASA to do this or a big company to do that,” says Lobovsky. “Our desktop printer encourages a more grass roots movement…it will be more interesting to see what people can do with it when they haven’t had access to 3D printers before…The future of 3D printing for Lobovsky looks like a lifelong career…For me it’s really exciting because it pulls from so many disciplines. Technically its software, mechanical engineering, electrical engineering and materials all combining into the product. For the business we’re selling the machine, materials and tools…”
71.     Chris Anderson resigns from Wired to become 3D Robotics  CEO  http://www.xconomy.com/san-diego/2012/11/06/san-diegos-3d-robotics-raises-5m-as-wired-editor-resigns-to-be-ceo/  “Chris Anderson…resigned…as the editor in chief of Wired magazine to become the full-time CEO of 3D Robotics…the San Diego-based superstore for amateur UAVs (unmanned aerial vehicles) has raised $5 million in venture funding…Roberts said he noted that interest in drones was mushrooming among “the alpha geek crowd,” and he alludes to an interesting parallel between the emergence of DIY Drones and the Homebrew Computer Club…“Visit any hacker space or Maker Faire these days and you will see drones in all of their varieties,”…As 3D Robotics grows, however, I wonder how federal aviation authorities will react to the rising flocks of robotic planes, helicopters, blimps, and other unmanned flying objects…Anderson says. “Our San Diego headquarters will continue to be the R&D and engineering center…3D Robotics, which now employs 40 people, also plans to hire more hardware and software engineers…”  http://www.trueventures.com/2012/11/05/welcoming-3d-robotics/
72.    Arduino teaches old coder new tricks  http://www.linuxjournal.com/content/arduino-teaches-old-coder-new-tricks  “…I was impressed with what the Arduino community was doing, but…saw no personal use for it. It took a grandson who is heavily involved in a high-school competitive robotics program to change things for me…he asked me some questions about robotics-related electronics, and I told him to google Arduino. He did. Arduino ended up on his Christmas list…I would be more helpful in assisting the grandson's Arduino efforts if I understood more about it myself, so I ordered a couple Arduino Nanos and some peripherals, such as rotors, servos, ultrasonic sensors and LCD displays, and dug in…It didn't take very long to remove the mental cobwebs and get into the elegant simplicity of the Arduino Project…The Arduino Project does away with worrying about most of the low-level systems code, leaving you with the now much-simplified task of creating your application. Using the Arduino IDE and included or contributed libraries enables you to interface to a plethora of hardware easily. Anyone who has developed in the C and C++ languages will find the Arduino platform easy to master quickly. Although Arduino is actually based upon the Wiring Project, compatibility with C, C++ and Linux are very high. After implementing and testing code for the various peripherals that I had accumulated and generally mastering the Arduino platform, I said to myself, "now what?" So, I abandoned the nice Arduino IDE and switched over to developing code using Linux tools, such as Make…”
Open Source Hardware
73.    Open source, sonar-controlled vibrator you play like a theremin, with your whole body  http://boingboing.net/2012/11/25/open-source-sonar-controlled.html  “Scanlime's Beth modded a remote control vibrator, replacing the interface with an Arduino-based sonar controller that she can activate with any part of her body, playing it like a theremin. The result is pretty cool -- it "closes the feedback loop" between the vibrator's intensity and the user's physical response…The plans are open source hardware (CC-BY-SA), and posted to Github. This toy serves as a kind of analog bridge between two remote spaces: the column of ultrasonically-oscillating air in front of the remote, and whatever body part happens to be in contact with the vibrator. Touch that invisible space above the remote, and the vibrator touches you…it does start to feel like there’s a palpable object in space above the remote’s sensors. Move your body close to it, and it reacts…”
74.    OpenGrab Electro-Permanent cargo gripper  http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/412473553/opengrab-open-hardware-electro-permanent-cargo-gri  “Small light Open Source/HW electro-permanent 10kg (ideal) cargo holding magnet for the DIY multicopter drone and robotics communities…Envision for a moment a simple mechanism that enables a quadrocopter to pick up and drop a cargo such as building hardware like seen in the video below…These magnets are programmed (on off) with a current pulse. No static energy is required. Changing the magnetic field does require energy and is around 1 Joule for our purposes. These electro-permanent magnets are just as strong as Neodymium magnets. I am proposing to manufacture a simple open source hardware device to do just that, aiming at sub $50 retail released under something similar to the GPL. All prints and design files are available on request, and if there is enough interest i would move all documentation online…”
Open Source
75.     Dell releases powerful, well-supported Linux Ultrabook with Profile Tool and Cloud Launcher  http://arstechnica.com/gadgets/2012/11/dell-releases-powerful-well-supported-linux-ultrabook/  “…Dell…Earlier this year…announced a pilot program, "Project Sputnik," intended to produce a bona fide, developer-focused Linux laptop using their popular XPS-13 Ultrabook as base hardware. The program turned out to be a rousing success, and this morning Dell officially unveiled the results of that pilot project: the Dell XPS 13 Developer Edition. The XPS 13 used in the Developer Edition features…an Intel i5 or i7 Ivy Bridge CPU and 8GB of RAM (the pilot hardware used Sandy Bridge CPUs and had 4GB of RAM). The Developer Edition also comes with a 256 GB SATA III SSD, and retains the pilot version's 1366x768 display resolution. The launch hardware costs $1,549…The laptop comes with Ubuntu Linux 12.04 LTS plus a few additions. Dell worked closely with Canonical and the various peripheral manufacturers to ensure that well-written, feature-complete drivers are available for all of the laptop's hardware. Out of the box the laptop will just work…The Project Sputnik team cooked up two open source tools which come preloaded on the laptop, aimed at automating setting up development environments and making deployment easier: the Profile Tool and the Cloud Launcher…The Profile Tool…is an application that facilitates the installation of preconfigured development tools, referred to as "profiles."…The Profile Tool is almost a "reverse cloud" deployment utility, pulling distributed resources down from the cloud to your local workstation…if you want to develop a specific type of Ruby application, you can use Profile Tool to locate a preconfigured Ruby "profile" on Github that matches what you want to do, then clone that profile to your computer. Profiles can contain all the fiddly bits necessary to actually begin working—libraries, whole frameworks, dependencies, or anything else. Developer Edition users can build and share their own profiles for others to use…Others who clone the profile will wind up with the same set of libraries, binaries, packages, dotfiles, and anything else included in the profile…high-profile developers can package and share their specific working environments…the Cloud Launcher, is designed to let developers quickly and easily deploy projects to a cloud provider. It leans on Ubuntu's Juju cloud service deployment tool…Cloud Launcher is intended to let developers model an environment on the Developer Edition laptop, then click a button and have that environment automatically duplicated to a production location at a cloud service provider like Amazon EC2…”
76.    Zurmo Open Source CRM Gets In-App Email  http://www.enterpriseappstoday.com/crm/zurmo-crm-gets-in-app-email.html  “…After adding gamification to the open source customer relationship management (CRM) platform earlier this year, the Zurmo team has been adding new components like data cleaning tools, saved search and social feeds options. For version 0.8.0, Zurmo gains in-app email capabilities…and new themes that add some polish to the user interface…Owning up to the reality that email is an ingrained part of doing business, the open source CRM project is embracing it instead…we have to acknowledge the reality that email still serves a major purpose for all organizations…Built-in email supports the company's overarching vision of CRM, which is that it should serve as a "center of gravity" for salespeople, marketing professionals and others. While Zurmo's email composition engine won't compete with full-fledged email clients, it offers popular formatting options and file attachment support…”
Civilian Aerospace
77.     Isle of Man space company teams up for Google Lunar X-Prize  http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-isle-of-man-20467100  “A Manx space company has teamed up with another in Israel in an attempt to win an international Moon explorer prize. Odyssey Moon Ltd has linked up with SpaceIL to compete in a competition with a prize of $30m (£18.5m). The Google-sponsored Lunar X-Prize will be fought over by 29 teams from 17 different countries…The presence of Odyssey Moon on the Isle of Man is thought to be one of the reasons behind a recent assessment showing the island to be the fourth most likely nation to return to the Moon…”
78.    Virgin spaceship aims to be science lab  http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-20500194  “Sir Richard Branson wants his tourist spaceship also to become a high-altitude science platform…the vehicle has been designed so that its seats can be removed easily and the space filled with science gear…The US space agency (Nasa) has already chartered the rocket plane…"It may also give us some additional time to show off the reliability and the operations of the vehicle, which would give our tourism customers even more confidence…if they see a Nasa flight has gone up and gone well, that will make them feel better about their purchase,"…The Virgin executive said geoscientists might want to use SS2 to pursue a range of research fields, including atmospheric chemistry, climate studies, space weather, or even to carry out simple Earth imagery…It is likely some groups will want to fly their experimental sensors on the plane before committing the technology to an orbiting satellite…”
Supercomputing & GPUs
79.    GPU grid helping to find AIDS cure  http://www.eetimes.com/electronics-blogs/other/4402472/GPU-grid-helping-to-find-AIDS-cure-  “…Using computational techniques, researchers are now able to show how various proteins unfurl to accelerate the spread of viruses, and one university in particular is putting its substantial weight behind using those methods to find a potential cure for AIDS. Hospital del Mar Medical Research Institute and UPF (Pompeu Fabra University) in Barcelona have been using GPUGRID.net, a voluntary distributed computing platform leveraging GPU accelerators to deliver “virtual supercomputing” performance to examine how a protein responsible for the maturation of the virus releases itself to initiate infection…What the scientists in Barcelona discovered Using ACEMD, a GPU-accelerated molecular dynamics software, is that HIV protease acts like a pair of scissors, cutting the long chain of connected proteins that form HIV into individual proteins that will form the infectious structure of new virons…Using the thousands of Nvidia GPU accelerators in GPUGRID.net, a voluntary distributed computing platform (think, crowd-sourced supercomputing), researchers were able to run thousands of highly complex computer simulations, each for hundreds of nanoseconds (billionths of a second) for a total of almost a millisecond, giving them a very high-probability that their simulation accurately represented real-world behaviors. Simulations of this length and complexity would have been practically unfeasible to achieve using a computing system based on CPUs alone…by leveraging a distributed network of computers the scientists saved millions of dollars they would have had to spend on a fully fledged supercomputer…“GPUs have been crucial,” said Dr. Gianni De Fabritiis, lead researcher, explaining that without them it would have been very difficult to simulate such slow biological processes from an atomistic point of view… “Running molecular dynamics simulations was prohibitive before in terms of costs, now we aggregate a simulation time of over a millisecond routinely,”…Dr. De Fabritiis added that having a structural picture of this step in HIV maturation was important because it facilitated being able to perform drug design on it…”
80.    Immersive display room driven by graphic supercomputer with 1.5 billion pixels from 416 screens  http://nextbigfuture.com/2012/11/an-immersive-display-room-driven-by.html  “Stony Brook University unveiled…a 1.5 billion pixel Reality Deck…a 416 screen super-high resolution virtual reality four-walled surround-view theater, is the largest resolution immersive display ever built driven by a graphic supercomputer. Its purpose and primary design principle is to enable scientists, engineers and physicians to tackle modern-age problems that require the visualization of vast amounts of data…Five times larger than the second largest display in the world…Immersive 4-wall layout in a 33’x19’x10’ room…240 CPU cores - 2.3 TFLOPs performance…80 GPUs - 220 TFLOPs performance, 320 GB distributed memory visualization applications…High-performance sound system with 22 speakers and four subwoofers…This technology will be used for visualizing and analyzing big data, such as advanced medical imaging, protein visualization, nanotechnology, astronomical exploration, micro tomography, architectural design, reconnaissance, satellite imaging, security, defense, detecting suspicious persons in a crowd, news and blog analyses, climate and weather modeling, as well as storm surge mapping to fight flood disasters, such as Superstorm Sandy and global warming…In the Reality Deck, data is displayed with an unprecedented amount of resolution that saturates the human eye, provides 20/20 vision, and renders traditional panning or zooming motions obsolete, as users just have to walk up to a display in order to resolve the minutiae, while walking back in order to appreciate the context that completely surrounds them…”

*****

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