Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Flying with the fastest birds on the planet: Peregrine Falcon & Gos Hawk...

Tiny spy cameras allow you to see some of the world's most magnificent birds in flight. Watch this video to learn how the fastest bird on the planet, the peregrine falcon, keeps control at mind-numbing speeds, and take a flight with the master of manoeuvrability, the Gos Hawk, as it flies through dense woodland.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Internet Scams and Phishing: A Look Inside the Business

eWeek reports: "From the fake IRS e-mails that hit in-boxes during tax season to the phony banking sites that look to trick users into entering sensitive information, phishers are still up to their old tricks. Just how much was underscored recently by a three-month investigation by Panda Security that found scammers are creating 57,000 fake Websites a week to exploit 375 popular brand names, such as eBay and Western Union."

Gymkhana: Ultimate Playground; l'Autodrome, France

Shot just south of Paris, France in Linas at l'Autodrome de Linas --Montlhéry, this 1.58 mile oval track, built in 1924, features banks as steep as 51 degrees, which is more than double the standard incline of most NASCAR ovals. Chosen by Ken for this specific reason, the ramp-like banking proved to be a unique and exciting challenge. The driving physics for the stunts performed were totally unknown until Ken attempted the maneuvers during filming.

Edison 2: Race for the $10 Million X Prize

Edison 2 uses the latest technology to make a fast, lightweight vehicle. Here's a look at the car on the track at the X Prize competition. Learn more about the X Prize and alternative-fuel vehicles on Consumer Reports's website

Monday, September 27, 2010

Superbus First Ride - 17 Sep 2010

Wubbo Ockels , inventor, made the first ride of the Superbus Vehicle designed by Antonia Terzi. Superbus drives 250 km/h on a special track and drives also on hignways and secondary roads. The propulsion is electric. Superbus is and innovative new pubic transport and a project of the Delft University of Technology.

Criminals 'go cloud' with attacks-as-a-service

InfoWorld reports: "Just like legitimate businesses, criminals are turning to the cloud as a way to generate new services and simplify their infrastructure. While some sites offer botnets for lease or sale, and other sites offer aid with cheating on games, the latest crop of criminal enterprises is serving up attacks as a service."

It is interesting to see how "cloud" based technologies are now being used. Everyone seem to be getting into the game, including criminals.

I heard a new acronym today, its called AaaS (Attacks as a Service) in reference to the article above.

Friday, September 24, 2010

Object-Oriented Storage: 14 Things You May Not Know

eWeek reports: "Reducing storage costs is becoming a high agenda item for IT organizations, yet data and efficient access to it is an organization's most valuable asset. Struggling with the performance, scalability and management complexity required to maintain conventional file-based storage systems is a losing battle if data needs to be stored more than 90 days. One way to approach this is to use an object-oriented storage system, which simplifies the process. Object-oriented storage differs from unstructured file storage in that the objects filed are not housed in volumes or attached to a directory. Objects are simply assigned an ID number or name with detailed metadata and can be retrieved at any time."

I wonder if this might be the next generation of mass storage. It sounds like it has several advantages according to the slide-show, but what I would like to know are the disadvantages to this technology. That is what I am trying to research now.

If you want more information on this technology, check out the following resources:

Thursday, September 23, 2010

TerraPower’s Travelling Wave Reactor – why not use an IFR?

BraveNewClimate reports: "There has been a lot of hype recently about the “Travelling Wave Reactor” (TWR), thanks largely to a very popular TED talk given recently by none other than Microsoft founder and multi-billionaire Bill Gates. In the 20 min talk, he describes the urgent need for cheap, abundant, low-CO2 energy, if we are to successfully mitigate climate change (a problem he takes very seriously). One key focus of Gates’ talk is nuclear power… new nukes."

A very interesting article comparing TWR and IFR (Integral Fast Reactor) technologies.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Bank robber hires decoys on Craigslist, fools cops

CNET News reports: "In an elaborate robbery scheme that's one part The Thomas Crowne Affair and one part Pineapple Express, a crook robbed an armored truck outside a Bank of America branch in Monroe, Wash., by hiring decoys through Craigslist to deter authorities."

Thursday, September 16, 2010

The Rockfish

A futurist SCI-FI story about a man and his little buddy fishing for a rockfish on an alien planet.

Oktapodi (Animated Short Film)

Oktapodi from oscardodo on Vimeo.

Epic failures: 11 infamous software bugs

Computerworld reports: "It all began with a log entry from 1947 by Harvard University's Mark II technical team. The now-classic entry features a moth taped to the page, time-stamped 15:45, with the caption 'Relay #70 Panel F (moth) in relay' and the proud boast, 'First actual case of bug being found.'"

It's a really good article, and provides more information then I have seen anyone write on the subject. It's technical, but worth reading.

Next Generation User Interfaces (From Switches to Augmented Reality)

Its interesting how the computer user interface has evolved over the decades. Here is a very brief history: First there was nothing more then switches and light and you had to enter and read information in binary, this evolved to punch cards and tape, later keyboards and printers, and eventually terminals with keyboard and monitors. For decades, the text user interface was the status-quo.

In the 1960s, Doug Engelbart introduced the concept of the mouse and graphical user interface (GUI). In the 1970s - 1980s, Xerox took the concept and made it a reality. In the 1980s Apple popularize the GUI with the Lisa and Macintosh lines of computers. Then again for decades, the graphical user interface was the status-quo.

In the 1980's Jaron Lanier, introduced the 'virtual reality' (VR) concept. The first generation of this technology was crude by today's standards, but advanced drastically since.  I remember seeing some early VR prototypes of future GUI in the 1990s, and being blown away about the concepts.

In 1993, Apple released an early natural speech recognition feature as part of their OS for the Quadra.  Microsoft first included this feature with their release of the Windows Vista OS.

Touch screens are passe, but when this technology is enhanced by advancements like a 'multi-touch gestures' interface.  Then combined with other technology advancements, you get a GUI that begins to become on-par with some of the user interface concepts introduced in the movie 2002 movie Minority report (excerpt of the scenes I am referring to).  Microsoft now includes a 'multi-touch gestures' interface feature as part of the Windows 7 OS.

In 2006, Nintendo introduced the 3D wireless controllers.  In 2007 Apple introduced the iPhone, and popularize the multi-touch gestures interface for this device.  In 2009, Yelp help popularize the augmented reality concept (computer generated information laid over real world video), by introducing an Easter egg on the iPhone called Monocle. 

In 2009 Microsoft introduced Project Natal, now called 'Kinect' (proof of concept video).  In 2009 at TEDIndia, Pranav Mistry demoed technology concepts from a company called SixthSense, that shows how they are overlaying computer data on the physical world and making it interactive.  In 2010,  Intel is also working on hard on advancing the user interface, see the following article.

From here you begin to see other emerging technologies, like camspace which is a computer vision platform.  Basically it allows you use a web cam, and just about any real world object as a game controller (or input device).

All the technologies I mentioned above might seem little disjointed in how I presented them, although the all share a few things in common.  All of them are popularized concepts based around advancements in user interface technologies.

As mobile devices become more powerful, and get more features (such as the motion sensor and gyroscope already built into the iPhone 4).  I personally believe that software developers will build on these features and concepts, to bring about next generation user interface enhancements that I believe will include location aware social networking concepts (such as Gowalla and foursquare, and now Facebook Places), augmented reality, object and speech recognition.

From a technological standpoint, I don't see developers limited by hardware anymore. I see greatest the limitation, is the imagination needed to integrate all these technologies together into a killer application that gains mass adaption.  Although, with all these advancements comes greater concern about privacy and security.  I hope these issues will be addressed before they become a problem.

FCC White Space Plan Isn't Exactly WiFi on Steroids

eWeek reports: "The announcement that the Federal Communications Commission was prepared to approve unlicensed digital operations in slices of frequency spectrum occupied by television guard bands is being greeted eagerly by many, including Google and Microsoft."

One of the best articles I have read on the subject. It has a great technical explanation on how the technology works.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Chris Anderson: How web video powers global innovation

TED's Chris Anderson says the rise of web video is driving a worldwide phenomenon he calls Crowd Accelerated Innovation -- a self-fueling cycle of learning that could be as significant as the invention of print. But to tap into its power, organizations will need to embrace radical openness.

Resources for Find a New Job

If you're trying to find a job in today's market you have to be as savvy as you can.  You have to do more then post your resume on a few job boards, you have to create a "personal brand" to distinguish yourself from the other available candidates.

There are a lot of free tools and resources out there to help you write a resume, research a company, get interview tips, and a great deal more.  Below are links to videos, articles, web sites and other tools that I have found that can help you in your job search.
  • General Tips
    • Network with everyone you know and let them know you're looking.
      • If you don't know anyone to talk to try finding recruiters in your field.
    • Leverage social networking site (Linkedin, and Twitter) tools to help you find a job.
      • Use them to build a personal brand and find jobs
    • Make sure you're resume is perfect.
      • Have several people review it.
      • Make sure your resume contains relevant keywords to help it get found.
      • Post your resume on the job boards (such as: Monster, Dice, etc.)
    • Search the job boards for positions, also target specific companies that you want to work for and search their job postings.
    • Research a company before you interview.
      • Use the Google, and the companies web site.
    • Be ready with questions to ask about the company/job that you're applying for.
    • Dress appropriately for the job interview.
    • Avoid wearing any fragrances (like cologne or perfume).
      • Some people may be allergic to them.
    • Be to the interview about 10-15 minutes ahead of time
      • Plan for traffic and know the route.
    • Have a list of references ready.
    • Send out a thank you letter after a personal interview.
  • Articles
  • Videos
  • Web Sites
    • Job Search Engines
      • Monster
        • General job search engine.
      • Indeed
        • General job search engine.
      • Dice
        • Technology professional job search engine
      • Craigslist
        • Some large and small companies do post jobs here
          • Government job search engine.
      • Job Social Network Sites
        • Linkedin
          • Professional/business social networking site.  Keep your resume up-to-date on this site and join groups.  Also do what you can find to build your network.
        • Twitter
          • General purpose social networking site. It can be a great resource if leveraged correctly.
      • Job Search Resources
      • Tools
          • This site allows you organizer your job search prospects and contacts.
        • VisualCV 
          • Create professional looking resume that people can view online.  If you don't have you're own web site to help brand yourself, this might be a good solution for you.

    Tuesday, September 14, 2010

    Google at 12: 10 IT Lessons the Search Engine Giant Has Taught Us

    eWeek reports: "Google is now 12-years-old and over that period, the search engine company has taught the tech space quite a bit about what Google is all about."

    Monday, September 13, 2010

    Midichlorian Rhapsody

    Star Wars themed parody of Bohemian Rhapsody.

    The Solo Adventures 3D

    This fan film explains the story behind Han Solo ditching the cargo that caused Jabba to put a bounty on him.
    Note: 3D glasses are required to view it all of its glory. - Job Search Organizer

    Are you looking for a job, and getting overwhelmed with all the contact information from talking to the different people in your job search? promotes itself as a Job Search Tool, Personal Relationship Manager, and a Job Search Organizer. Watch the video below to get more information.

    Friday, September 10, 2010

    Apple TV vs. Google TV: How do they differ? reports: "The smartphone brawl between Apple and Google just crashed through a fence and onto your television set. But is Apple TV vs. Google TV a fair fight? Here’s why Apple TV and Google TV are significantly different approaches to digital entertainment."

    10 Tips for an Online Job Search

    Baseline magazine reports: "Searching for a job, but don’t know where to begin? Need specific advice for Linkedin, Facebook, and Twitter? Check out these ideas from the book The Online Job Search Survival Guide, by Sherrie A. Madia, Ph.D., director of communications at The Wharton School, and Paul Borgese, a managing partner at strategy and marketing company EyeCatcher Digital. Noting that 75% of companies expect recruiters to do online research on job candidates, the authors stress the importance of keeping your own online presence clean and current, and of finding ways to make yourself visible and attractive to the right people. A key is what Madia calls “reverse-engineering” the job search. “Rather than sending resumes en masse, social networking enables job seekers to plant content seeds strategically in places where human resources will likely be. Establish yourself as a thought leader, and give your expertise freely.” Using social media effectively also develops and showcases your marketable communication skills and online savvy."

    Its a slide show of about 18 slides giving you some basic social networking job tips. It tells you how you can use Twitter, Facebook, and Linkenin to find a new job.

    Thursday, September 09, 2010

    Article: Google TV on Track for Fall, Schmidt Says - Web Services Web 20 and SOA

    eWeek reports: "Google TV is an ambitious effort to let users turn their televisions into computers. The service, based on Google's Android operating system, will let users navigate between channels, Websites and Web applications through Google's Chrome Web browser.

    Schmidt, speaking at the IFA consumer electronics show in Berlin Sept. 7, said the service will soak up consumers' time in the evening. He also said the service will launch worldwide in 2011."

    Bill Gates: The End of Textbooks as We Know Them

    I totally agree with a lot of what Bill Gates has to say in this video about text books. I think having electronic text books that can help you do self-assessments tests to make sure you understand the material is absolutely genius. Most modern ebook readers all they do is take a real world experience and digitize it.

    Putting some intelligence in to these ebook, can expand the experience and make it more interactive. That is one way to take this technology to the next level. Personally what I would like to see in the next generation ebooks, is embedded media (i.e.: video, hyperlinks, maybe even flash), self-assessments test, and an open portable standard to move books between reader and platforms.

    The fact that there is no open portable standard that allows this I see as a hindrance to mass adaption because most publishers and consumers don't want to lock themselves into a proprietary technology. I also believe that this standard should include some type of open DRM (which is copy-protection) standard to help the publishers to want to adapt it.

    Wednesday, September 08, 2010

    Finding a Technology Job (Tip #2): Using Twitter to Find a Job

    If you're a technology worker who is looking for employment. You might find that you now have to leverage social networking sites like Twitter as part of your job search.

    Although, you may ask yourself "how to do it effectively?" Here is a video with some great tips on how to use Twitter in your job search.

    Please note, this blog post is not an endorsement of the business or its services that created the video. The video creator is responsible for all its content. It is being reposted for educational purposes in order to assist people in their job search.

    Finding a Technology Job (Tip #1): Using Linkedin - Free vs. Premium Service

    If you're a technology worker who is looking for employment. You might find that you now have to leverage social networking sites like Linkedin as part of your job search. Although, you may ask yourself "how to do it effectively?"

    Here is a video with some great tips on how to use Linkedin to find a new job. For more information about the person who created this video and some more information on the techniques discussed in it, see the following web site.

    Video title: Getting LinkedIn Premium Paid Account for FREE ($600 Value)

    Please note, this blog post is not an endorsement of the business or its services that created the video. The video creator is responsible for all its content. It is being reposted for educational purposes in order to assist people in their job search.

    Monday, September 06, 2010

    Researchers Find Quantum Encryption Hack

    eWeek reports: "A team of researchers has uncovered a new way to crack the security of quantum cryptography (using bright light)." Read the rest of the article.

    2012 may bring the "perfect storm" - solar flares, systems collapse

    The Seattle Examiner reports: "Long scorned as “mysticism” and “parascience,” concern about the year 2012 has now surfaced in a mainstream NASA report on the potential impacts on human society of solar flares anticipated to peak in 2012." Read the rest of the article.