Archive

Archive for the ‘Technology’ Category

Performance of iPhone 4S is Comparable to iPad

October 11, 2011 Leave a comment

“Apple’s ability to control the entire information chain, down to the point of limiting leaks, appears to be gradually slipping as it grows as a company.

Case in point are the numerous hardware and performance leaks surrounding the newly launched iPhone 4S. Little did we know that several weeks ago we were staring at photos of the 4S’ PCB, and more recently we’ve seen the first performance results from Apple’s first A5 based smartphone thanks to a few eager users around the web.

We’ve compiled these results here from various sources (all linked below) and compared them to our existing database of tests.”

Is Faraday the Future of Bicycles?

October 11, 2011 1 comment

“This ain’t no fixie with a minty fresh paint job, this is the Faraday.

Built for the Oregon Manifest design competition, ideas factory Ideo teamed up with bike builders Rock Lobster Cycles to produce this retro-technotastic electric bike.

Everything futuristic has been hidden inside the frame: those parallel top tubes hold a series of lithium-ion batteries which juice up the front-hub motor — all controlled from the green box tucked beneath the seat cluster.

Those two prongs up front serve as built-in headlights and the base of a modular racking system, letting you swap out various carrying mechanisms like a trunk or child seat with the pop of a bolt.”

CyanogenMod 7.1 Releases. 24 Phones Added. Includes Xperia.

October 11, 2011 Leave a comment

“All it took was a little love from Sony Ericsson and now CyanogenMod’s latest official release includes support for a happy cohort of 2011 Xperias as well as the X8.

The same goes for Samsung, which doled out a free GSII and some employment and now finds that the Galaxy smartphones are on version 7.1’s list too.

Wondering if your particular Droid, Optimus or Incredible can run the cyan shade of Gingerbread and its attendant perks?”

These are the phones that have been added to the list that can now run CM 7.1:

  • HTC Desire S
  • HTC Incredible S
  • HTC Incredible 2
  • LG Optimus 2X and T-Mobile G2x
  • Motorola Backflip (Motus)
  • Motorola Cliq / Cliq XT
  • Motorola Defy
  • Motorola Droid 2
  • Motorola Droid X
  • Samsung Captivate
  • Samsung Fascinate
  • Samsung Mesmerize
  • Samsung Showcase
  • Samsung Vibrant
  • Samsung Galaxy S
  • Samsung Galaxy S2 (multiple carriers)
  • Sony Ericsson Xperia X8
  • Sony Ericsson Xperia Mini
  • Sony Ericsson Xperia Mini Pro
  • Sony Ericsson Xperia Neo
  • Sony Ericsson Xperia Play
  • Sony Ericsson Xperia Ray
  • Sony Ericsson Xperia Arc
  • ZTE V9

 

Google Releases Dart

October 11, 2011 Leave a comment

“Google has released an early version of Dart, a new programming language designed to take some of the pain out of developing applications for the Web. But while it’s an evolutionary improvement on JavaScript, Dart faces a hard uphill battle for acceptance.

Dart is an object-oriented, structured programming language designed to ease some of the problems that developers run into writing large Web-based applications. It has a structure that will be familiar to most developers who have worked with JavaScript.

But Dart is more easily organized into smaller methods and objects than in scripting languages, so as to avoid monstrous monolithic blocks of code that are difficult to maintain. It’s also designed to be more self-documenting (in the tradition of Python).

On Google’s Chromium and Code blogs, Google Dart team software engineer Lars Bak wrote,“Generally, the contracts with other parts of an application are conveyed in comments rather than in the language structure itself. As a result, it’s difficult for someone other than the author to read and maintain a particular piece of code.””

Braille App Makes Tablets Accessible to Blind Persons

October 11, 2011 Leave a comment

“The Braille system has allowed blind people to read the written word since 1825. Unfortunately, Braille doesn’t translate well to the glossy smooth surfaces of modern touch screen tablets and phones. A new app thinks it can change that…

The new app was created by NMSU undergraduate Adam Duran, Stanford Assistant Professor Adrian Lew, and Stanford Doctoral candidate Sohan Dharmaraja as part of the Army High-Performance Computing Research Center’s (AHPCRC) annual two-month summer immersion course. It allows the blind to use tablets via the Braille eight-button keyboard but with an important twist.

Instead of requiring the user to find virtual buttons on a glass surface (how frickin’ impossible is that?), the individual keys orient themselves to the correct finger whenever the user touches the screen. “They’re customizable,” Dharmaraja said in a press release. “They can accommodate users whose fingers are small or large, those who type with fingers close together or far apart, even to allow a user to type on a tablet hanging around the neck with hands opposed as if playing a clarinet.””

Turn Your iPhone Camera Into a Microscope for $30

October 11, 2011 2 comments

“UC-Davis researchers developed a lens that’ll turn your iPhone or any camera-enabled smartphone into a 350X microscope.

The mod is a simple 1-mm ball lens mounted in rubber that’s taped to your phone’s camera. It costs about $30.

Besides its obvious uses in the classroom and research field, this basic lens could be a useful tool for doctors in impoverished areas.

It’s resolution of 1.5 microns is sensitive enough that doctors can use it to view red blood cells and diagnose blood diseases like iron deficiency sickle-cell anemia.”

Old Kilo Loses Weight With Age!

October 10, 2011 Leave a comment

Photo: Christopher Griffith; kilogram models by Jim Zivic

“The official US kilogram — the physical prototype against which all weights in the United States are calibrated — cannot be touched by human hands except in rare circumstances. Sealed beneath a bell jar and locked behind three heavy doors in a laboratory 60 feet under the headquarters of the National Institute of Standards and Technology 20 miles outside Washington, DC, the shiny metal cylinder is, in many ways, better protected than the president…

The American prototype is one of some four dozen such national standards around the world, and each of those, in turn, is accountable to an even higher authority: a regal artifact called the international prototype kilogram. Familiarly known as Le Grand K and held in a vault just outside of Paris under three bell jars, it dates back to the 1880s, when it was forged by the British metallurgist George Matthey from an alloy of nine-tenths platinum and one-tenth iridium.

Aside from a yearly ceremonial peek inside its vault, which can be unlocked only with three keys held by three different officials, the prototype goes unmolested for decades. Yet every 40 years or so, protocol requires that it be washed with alcohol, dried with a chamois cloth, given a steam bath, allowed to air dry, and then weighed against the freshly scrubbed national standards, all transported to France.

It is also compared to six témoins (witnesses), nominally identical cylinders that are stored in the vault alongside the prototype. The instruments used to make these comparisons are phenomenally precise, capable of measuring differences of 0.0000001 percent, or one part in 1 billion.

But comparisons since the 1940s have revealed a troublesome drift. Relative to the témoins and to the national standards, Le Grand K has been losing weight — or, by the definition of mass under the metric system, the rest of the universe has been getting fatter. The most recent comparison, in 1988, found a discrepancy as large as five-hundredths of a milligram, a bit less than the weight of a dust speck, between Le Grand K and its official underlings.”