Technology

If you’re into tech I’m sure you’ve heard the joke about Apple’s iPad – not since Moses has the world been this excited about a tablet. Truth be told, the iPad’s iconic features didn’t drop from the sky into Steve Jobs’ hands – if anything, tech development is a lot more like evolutionary biology – and if you look beneath our latest and greatest gadgets, you’ll find evidence of that evolutionary process – products that were born of good ideas, but didn’t quite make the cut.

To the list of weird-sounding hybrid words of the digital age, like Googling and tweeting, we can now add "pinning." As in Pinterest. It's sort of an online scrapbook or bulletin board, and it's one of the fastest-growing websites in history.

Last month, more than 10 million unique visitors signed on to Pinterest. But some of them, like Billy Winburn, are still trying to get the hang of it. At an office in Alexandria, Va., Jennifer Folsom, who works a few desks away, is walking him through the process.

There's a civil war going on in California. It's the north vs. the south — Hollywood vs. Silicon Valley. And much like that other American Civil War, there are two different economic worldviews at stake. One of the highest-profile battles was fought last month, when large Internet sites like Wikipedia staged an online blackout to protest anti-piracy bills in Congress.

The north won that battle, and for now, the legislation is on hold. But the war between Hollywood and Silicon Valley over how to deal with intellectual property is far from over.

George Harrison wasn't the flashiest, craftiest guitarist of his day, just the one everyone loved. His sound always served the songs, just enough to make them better, but never enough to eclipse the writing of Lennon or McCartney or even his own tunes.

Troubled Sony Pins Hopes On PlayStation Vita

Feb 22, 2012

Sony launched the PlayStation Vita, its first hand-held gaming device in seven years, Wednesday. Vita, of course, is the Latin word for "life." And after suffering a series of tough blows — from the Japanese earthquake and tsunami to a relentlessly strong yen and a significant hacking attack — a bit of new life is just what the struggling company needs.

The Vita went on sale at a Best Buy in Los Angeles Wednesday morning. Despite the company's $50 million marketing campaign, only about a dozen gamers were on hand.

Modern computer games and their fast-paced graphics require an incredible amount of computing horsepower. So much, in fact, that the kinds of chips commonly used for gaming are now being built into some of the world's fastest supercomputers.

If you're a serious gamer, if realistic, detailed graphics get your pulse racing, you should write Jen-Hsun Huang a thank-you note.

With developers pumping out an estimated 2,000 applications daily for use on smart-phones and tablets, reviewers and web-critics are keeping busy sorting out what’s worth downloading, and what’s worth squat. 

iLove Don'ts

Feb 14, 2012
Photo by Garrett via Flickr Creative Commons

Hallmark holiday or not, Valentine’s Day carries joy, expectations, sadness, and more than its share of tired tropes for just about everyone. What, we wondered, signals love in the age of digital-era dating? Synching calendars on Outlook? Downloading a marriage counselor app on your smart-phone?

As zealous consumers know, the sleek look and user-friendly feel of Apple’s high-end gadgets are big part of their sticker price. One man is rethinking form and function with a tiny, inexpensive, bare-bones computer called the Raspberry Pi …which he hopes will bring the power of programming to even the poorest corners of the globe. Eben Upton is the creator of the miniature machine – he’s also founder of the Raspberry Pi foundation.

Here's video of the Raspberry Pi in action:

<a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/aartj/2434968218/in/photostream/" target="blank">aartj</a> via Flickr/Creative Commons

Best journal article title of the week? "Accelerated ion beams for art forensics." Frankly, they had me at "accelerated ion beams" - the beams could have been for almost anything - but using it to stop art fakes is even that much cooler.

Photo by (cup)cake_eater, courtesy of Flickr Creative Commons

Produced by Chris Cuffe

Photo by Leo Reynolds, courtesy of Flickr Creative Commons

                                                         

 

Part 1: Revenge of the Web-nerds

Just to be clear:

Wikipedia's English pages have indeed "gone black" until midnight ET tonight — part of an organized protest by it and many other websites over pending anti-online piracy legislation in Congress.

Courtesy Joseph Schlesinger and MakeIt Labs

In Nashua, engineers, gadget lovers, tech enthusiasts and other so-called “makers” are working to reopen MakeIt Labs; Nashua city inspectors shut the space down late last year over safety and permitting issues.

Gwarlingo's Michelle Aldredge

Somewhere on the list of why making a radio show is so fun would be this:  surfing the internet is part of the job. In other office pods, people have to Google on the sly. We consider following links and electronic crumbs rather productive. You never know when you might accidentally stumble onto your next guest.

Photo by SuperlativeQuip, courtesy of Flickr creative commons

In the span of one year, a business can achieve record-breaking profits, or suffer staggering financial losses – and despite the size of its product or the confidence with which it’s marketed, the automotive industry has proven to be no exception. You only have to look as far back as March of last year – when a massive earthquake and tsunami in Japan took the lives of thousands, set off an international nuclear scare, and sent Toyota’s quarterly profits plummeting as production was delayed, and parts suppliers were wiped out.

Photo by Sebastianlund, courtesy of Flickr creative commons

Twenty eleven was a big year for personal computing, from the explosion of cloud technology and the tablet computer to the death of Steve Jobs and our introduction to his iphone brainchild, the personal assistant named Siri. Here to tell us what might be coming next is Rob Fleischman. He’s a computer scientist, serial tech entrepreneur, and our favorite explainer of all things technology related.

 

(Photo by Johan Wieland via Flickr Creative Commons)

In 1948, a plane crash in a remote Alaskan mountain range killed everyone on board …twenty-four merchant mariners returning to the US from Shanghai, and six Northwest Airlines crew members. The crash site was quickly covered by snow and eventually entombed in ice…where it remained until 1999. It was then that a pair of former US Airforce pilots turned their hobby of solving forgotten aviation mysteries into an investigation.

(Photo by Eifachfilm Vacirca via Flickr Creative Commons)

Back in the mid-2000's, peer to peer lending web sites like Prosper and Lending Club bet that ordinary people could take the place of banks. The business model was both daring and consistent with the hyper-connected internet culture. The idea was that people who needed loans could connect with investors willing to bet on getting paid back with a little interest. Prosper’s faith in crowd-sourcing replacing traditional risk-assessment tools used by banks turned out to be a mistake.

(Photo by Mr. Wright via Flickr Creative Commons)

The CEO of Reppify, a start up offering employers a new way to measure prospective employees by their use of social media, explains why "Klout" is what it's all about.   

<a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/nuttz/243256328/in/photostream/" target="blank">Jim Nutt</a> via Flickr/Creative Commons

The hospital delivery room is not a fun place for surprises - the more parents and medical staff know going in, the better the outcome usually is. The Predibirth system helps keep surprises to a minimum by MRI-scanning Junior in the womb* and running virtual simulations of labor - if it sees a potentially serious problem, like baby's head being bigger than expected, doctors can consider planning a c-section in advance.

Dennis Skley / Flickr

Recently, Wells Fargo Securities released a short report offering a state-by-state look at the places that could be hardest-hit by a potential European recession.  Since New Hampshire has carved out a healthy niche for itself in the high-tech components export market, we thought this report might be of interest to our StateImpact readers.

flickr by liewcf

Here’s a story worth sharing on your smartphone: new research says there is NOT an epidemic of teen sexting.

Janis Wolak is senior researcher at the Crimes Against Children Research Center at the University of New Hampshire. She’s co-author of two studies on sexting being released in today’s edition of the journal Pediatrics, and she tells All Things Considered host Brady Carlson the UNH data shows a rate of sexting much lower than the 20 percent number commonly cited in news reports.

(Photo by <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/simplerich/2187363093/" target="_blank">Simple Rich</a> via Flickr Creative Commons)

“Clean Coal,” refers to technologies that reduce heavy metal, carbon and other emissions from the burning of coal. The development of technologies that could, potentially, filter greenhouse gasses and store CO2 permanently is moving ahead. This week, a large demonstration of clean coal technology is being staged in Illinois, testing the viability of so-called “carbon sequestration,” an important step in testing the potential of clean coal technology. 

(Photo by <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/angelaypablo/860181962/" target="_blank">aranarth</a> via Flickr Creative Commons)

There's a gathering of developers and code writers taking place globally...and they're invading Manchester to create apps for doing good. 

LINKS:

Random Hacks of Kindness

Manchester gathering info

Small Dog Electronics

(Photo by <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/arwing3/3991116008/" target="_blank">That One Doood</a> via Flickr Creative Commons)

At the dawn of the MP3 era, music-lovers digitized their CD collections, racking up thousands of hours of songs on their home computers, while clearing out their shelves. The thrill was soon followed by the realization that most of us owned far more music than we had time to listen to.

Photo courtesy of the Hood at Dartmouth

Reverse migration: African American populations boomerang back below the Mason-Dixon line.  Plus, why adding "sandwich board" to your resume could be a good thing.  Also, an NGO spreading sustainability in Niger turns 10.  And a look at a Native American Art exhibition from the Hood at Dartmouth.  Finally, data through light - the future of electronic transfer?

Photo by Moe M, courtesy of Flickr Creative Commons

Pastor Joel Kruggel of the Bethany Covenant Church in Bedford talks about his congregation's work providing Sudanese refugees with their own place of worship, as well as computer literacy classes and computers. 

 

LINKS

To donate, contact The Bethany Covenant Church

More about the Sudanese Evangelical Covenant Church in Manchester

courtesy New Hampshire High Tech Council

A planetarium on your flat-screen monitor. Streaming music from an iPad all over the house. And a germ-fighting mask for health care first responders dealing with an outbreak of disease.

Those are some a few of the finalists in the New Hampshire High Tech Council’s Product of the Year award, which will be presented tonight at an event in Manchester.

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