Thursday, May 31, 2007

Google Gears Allows Offline Web Development

eWeek reports: "At Google's Developer Day event on May 31, the company is expected to announce Google Gears, an open-source technology for creating offline Web applications, said Bret Taylor, head of Google developer programs."

It seems like offline web applications are going to be the next hot technology that companies like Google and others that are going to be pushing it. Firefox 3 is also going to support offline web applications.

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Article: Google, Microsoft Mapping Software Gets Real

PC Magazine reports: "Google and Microsoft returned from the holiday weekend poised to battle it out on the mapping front with updates that utilize 3-D and 360-degree virtual tour technology."

This is really impressive technology, here is an example of Google's technology. To try Microsoft's Maps technology you will need to install a special plug-in in your browser (Internet Explorer or Firefox).

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Steampunk Keyboard Mod

Steampunk Keyboard Mod: "My goal with this project was to build a retro keyboard that was fully functional and of a sufficient quality that it could be used everyday by a touch typist."

This is the coolest keyboard mod that I have ever seen.

Monday, May 28, 2007

Sunday, May 27, 2007

Artcile: Sneak Peek at the Zonbu PC

PC Magazine reports: "A $99 PC with up to 100GB of storage, a small footprint, and the ability to play your multimedia files? That's pretty hard to believe, but the Zonbu PC pulls it off."

What makes this computer different is that doesn't have a hard drive, and all data is stored on remote servers on the Internet. For more information read the article. Here is the Zonbu web site.

Google Improves Language Translation Site - News and Analysis by PC Magazine

PC Magazine reports: "Google Translate page will provide translations for 12 languages and will provide international web surfers the option to search the dearth of English-language information available on the Internet, according to Google."

Google has been enhancing its service offering, and now its expanding its translation services. To try out the new services, go to the following site.

Thursday, May 24, 2007

Google Lab: Experimental Search

Check out Google Lab's new experimental search technologies. Some of them are very cool, while others have been around for a few years (such as keyboard shortcuts).

There are three new search technologies that they're demonstrating:
  • Timeline and map views: Google extracts key dates and locations from your search results and display it in a different dimension.
  • Keyboard shortcuts: Navigate your search results quickly without using your mouse.
  • Left/right-hand search navigation: right or left-handed contextual search navigation that allows you to refine your search to related terms.

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Article: Promising antispam technique gets nod

CNET reports: "A key Internet standards body gave preliminary approval on Tuesday to a powerful technology designed to detect and block fake e-mail messages. It's called DomainKeys Identified Mail, and it promises to give Internet users the best chance so far of stanching the seemingly endless flow of fraudulent junk e-mail."

I have been reading about this technology for years, for the most part I assumed it died because I had not heard anything about it for a long time. Well its back, so let hope it works.

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Google Offers Daily Trend Updates

PC Magazine reports: "Google Hot Trends combines elements of Zeitgeist and Trends—two existing Google products that give a glimpse into Web search habits, but only in retrospect based on weeks-old data."

Try out Google Hot Trends for yourself. It really is a combination of Google Zeitgeist and Trends feature in one tool.

Article: 10 Weirdest USB Devices, Part II

PC Magazine reports: "At PC Magazine, we know that not all gadgets are for practical use—some products do nothing more than provide us with a few laughs. Back in October of 2006, we brought you a collection of the 10 weirdest USB devices, including a USB hamster wheel and USB desk aquarium. ... Well, we're back with even more wild and crazy USB gadgets to crowd those USB ports. So hold on to that mouse, because you're in for a USB-tastic ride!"

It's amazing what people will create and hook it up to a computer.

Sunday, May 20, 2007

Video: Project Constellation (NASA's Return to the Moon)

This is the coolest video I have seen from NASA, its CG animation about the 'Project Constellation'. This project is NASA's return to the Moon, using an Apollo type spacecraft. This video has a high production quality, and great music.

Here is some more information (not very glitzy, but full of information).

Audio: Chinese 'Gold Farmers'

From Morning Edition (May 14, 2007): "Playing online games for 12 hours is a full-time job for thousands of Chinese workers. They're accumulating virtual money - or "gold" - which they can sell for real cash. But it's a dull and labor-intensive job with limited payoffs."

Video: Helio Display In Action

San Francisco Technology Reporter Gabriel Slate demonstrates the 'Helio Display' from IO2Technology. The display allows you to project an image/video in mid-air. These displays can be purchased from the company for about US$20,000. Here is the video of it action.

Video: Talking Meat

Background: "Looking to extend the Empire, the Minister of Colonial Wars discovers to his great dismay Humans are made of... meat. Meat which can think, talk, sing, dream, build machines... How is the General of the Fifth Invasion Arm Forces going to react to such an universal anachronism when the Minister will report to him?" (excerpt from YouTube)

For some background on this story of this video, check out the following web site.

Video: Mineral Oil Submerged Computer

Puget Custom Computers shows you how to create an economical liquid cool PC by using an aquarium to submerge a motherboard and power supply in mineral oil. To learn more watch the video and then check out their web site.

Article: Hybrid Cars' Fantasy Mileage Ratings Drive Into the Sunset

Wired reports: "Hybrid car economics will face a new road test this month with the arrival of fresh models sporting revised mileage ratings from the Environmental Protection Agency. ... This year, new test standards have forced manufacturers to lower advertised efficiency claims on most models compared to previous years, and car lots are bracing for a tougher environment for hybrid sales."

The EPA's new standard for calculating estimated fuel economy has been updated. This new data reveals some interesting information about cars real fuel economy. Read the article to find out more.

Saturday, May 19, 2007

Security: Avoiding Check Fraud

It appears that check fraud has become popular again. Con artists are 'washing' old checks to remove the ink using common household chemicals. After they remove the ink from the checks, they're cashing them for any value they choose.

To fight back, you need to use a pen, that has an ink that is that can't be washed off. For example, the Uni-Ball 207 uses an that is almost impervious to many solvents . This pen can be purchased for about about $2 a piece.

Sunday, May 13, 2007

Video: Microsoft oPhone

Microsoft put together this video for the Mix '07 Web design conference in Las Vegas. There's several computer and programming related jokes in the video. oPhone is suppose to Microsoft's tongue-in-cheek answer to Apple's iPhone.

Video: Physics of Superheroes (Death of Gwen Stacy)

Physicist Dr. Jim Kakalios proves how Spider-Man's girlfriend Gwen Stacy died. This is one of the seminal events in the Spider-Man comic books. The video demonstrates some of the laws of Newtonian physics.

Article: When IT and taxidermy collide...

Ananova reports: "A US artist and inventor has combined IT and taxidermy to create a computer housed in a dead beaver. ... two more US inventors created a computer mouse housed in a real mouse."

If you love animals stop here, if you want to see case mods taken to a new level check out the following article.

Note: The influance for this case mod could have come from a joke article called 'Installing Linux on a Dead Badger'.

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Article: Keystrokes Are Us

eWeek reports: "What I like about keystroke authentication as a biometric factor is that it uses something that is already built in to every user's PC: a keyboard. This eliminates the need to, for example, retrofit field-deployed PCs with a fingerprint reader—ditto for laptops—because the keyboard"

This is an interesting product, instead of using extra hardware that most computers don't have (such as a fingerprint reader, retina scanner, etc.). This software records the characteristic of your keystrokes and factors them into your password.

Slideshow 10 Emerging Technologies that Flopped

An interesting slideshow of technologies that flopped in the recent past for one reason or other. Some of the technologies were just bad ideas, others were marketed poorly, or some were just the wrong solution to a problem.

Article: 'Encyclopedia of Life' Project Launched

PC Magazine reports: "From apples to zebras, all 1.8 million known plant and animal species will be listed in an Internet-based 'Encyclopedia of Life' under a $100 million project, ... The 10-year scheme, launched with initial grants of $12.5 million from two U.S.-based foundations, could aid everyone from children with biology homework to governments planning how to protect endangered species."

I really hope that the 'Encyclopedia of Life' and Wikipedia will collaborate with each other rather then compete as two existing projects. I believe the combination of the two sources of information would be very powerful.

Tuesday, May 08, 2007

LG GGW-H10N PC Blu-ray / HD-DVD Combo

ExtremeTech reports: "Recently, LG Electronics began shipping the Super Blu Player, a consumer Blu-ray player that can also play back HD-DVD movies, though some advanced HD-DVD interactive features are missing. Now the company is readying a PC drive that can burn Blu-ray, DVD, and CD discs. It also serves as an HD-DVD ROM drive and, with the right software, can play back HD-DVD movies."

The first generation of HD DVD/Blu-ray combo drives are arriving on the market. Personally, I have been waiting for these drives for a little while because it means that I don't have to commit to one format or the other.

Video: In the Universe Size Does Matter...

This video really puts the size of the planets and stars into prospective...

Sunday, May 06, 2007

Chad Vader Episode 6 & 7

These are the latest installment of the continuing story of Chad Vader, Darth Vader's less-talented, less-charismatic younger brother

Episode 6

Episode 7

If you have not yet already watched "Chad Vader - Day Shift Manager" episodes 1-5, you may want to watch them to get the background story. I have included links to these videos below:

Video: Porsche 911 vs Yamaha R1

Which is faster a Porsche 911 or Yamaha R1? Watch the video to find out.

Fast Food: Ads vs. Reality

"Each item was purchased, taken home, and photographed immediately. Nothing was tampered with, run over by a car, or anything of the sort. It is an accurate representation in every case. Shiny, neon-orange, liquefied pump-cheese, and all."

Warning: after reading this blog post you may lose your desire for certain fast foods. If you're on a diet, please read this you might not desire this stuff so much. ;-)

Video: The Apple iBox Gaming Console

Check out Apple's new gaming console, its called iBox and it doesn't even require a controller.

Video: Novell MAC vs. PC ad spoof

Novell's has gotten in on the MAC/PC ad spoof.

Friday, May 04, 2007

Video: Code Guardian (Parts 1 and 2)

What happens if WWII had giant fighting robots? Marco Spitoni spent the last five years of his spare time creating a 13-minute CG mini-movie called 'Code Guardian' to answer that question.

Code Guardian (Parts 1)

Code Guardian (Parts 2)

Check out his web site to watch some more of his stuff or find out more about these videos.

Call Any Phone Anywhere with Skype for Free on Mother's Day

Skype is offering a full day of free calling to any phone (land lines and cell phone) anywhere in the world on Mother's Day (that's May 13th for the males out there). :-)

Thursday, May 03, 2007

Article: 15 ways stores trick you into spending - MSN Money

MSN Money reports: "Ever notice how you can go to a store to pick up just one thing and then, by the time you get to the check stand, you have five or six things in your cart and a bigger bill than you had anticipated?"

Stores will use an several different techniques to try to get you to buy more stuff then you need. This is great article that explains the psychological factors that are part of just about every store's design to get you spend more money.

Video: Millimeters Matter

This video is just weird... If you are small compared to everyone else - size really is important!

Wednesday, May 02, 2007

Slideshow: The Most Important Open-Source Apps of All Time - Linux Kernel

eWEEK Labs names the applications that have moved open-source technologies from corporate curiosities to integral enterprise tools.

If you don't know anything about open-source technologies, this is the quickest primer you will ever take. If you're looking for some best open-source applications available this list contains some of the best. Its not complete by any means but its a great start.