pbahra (1889666) writes "World War I changed everything. From new countries to literature, from tanks to treaties and from flamethrowers to fashion, the conflict is still writ large on our lives 100 years on.
It gave birth to violent dictators and their ideologies but extended the electoral franchise to millions. It ushered in the era of mechanized warfare whilst laying the foundations for modern medicine.
pbahra (1889666) writes "Let’s be honest, 3-D-printed food doesn’t exactly sound appetizing. You imagine pizza made out of some gray paste, or chickens printed to look like lobsters, or something. But a Barcelona startup is hoping to make 3-D food printers the machine of choice for the discerning foodie.
Natural Machines, based in the Barcelona Activa center in the west of the city, is working on a 3-D printer that will produce not just chocolates (there are plenty of companies that do that) but pasta (such as ravioli), breads—in fact, anything that starts life as a dough, paste or stiff liquid." Link to Original Source top
Elop Was Second Choice as Nokia CEO, Ex-Chairman Says
pbahra (1889666) writes "Stephen Elop wasn’t Nokia Corp.'s first pick as chief executive three years ago, the man many credit with having fueled the company’s rise—only to later preside over its decline—says in a memoir. Jorma Ollila, was Nokia chairman when Mr. Elop was snatched from Microsoft Corp.'s executive ranks to join the once-dominant handset maker. In his book, Mr. Ollila—who as chairman in 2010 led the search for a new CEO—describes how he flew to the U.S. that year to interview five potential candidates with suitable backgrounds over the course of three days. After the interviews, Mr. Ollila’s primary choice “was the No. 2 man at a well-known American technology company.”" Link to Original Source top
Twinkind Takes the Ultimate 'Selfie', a 3-D Model of Yourself
pbahra (1889666) writes "It is, perhaps, the ultimate “selfie”—a self-portrait snapped with a digital camera. But why be content with taking a picture of yourself, what about a three-dimensional miniature model of yourself reproduced in unnerving accuracy? A German startup is offering just that.
Customers of Twinkind can get a 3-D figurine ranging in size from around 15cm (6) to 35cm and costing between €225 ($297) and €1,290.
The process starts with capturing your likeness in the company’s offices in Hamburg. According to Mr. Schaedel, over 100 images taken from all angles are shot in a fraction of a second using technology designed by Twinkind." Link to Original Source top
Airlines Could Allow Gadgets for Takeoffs and Landings
pbahra (1889666) writes "Airline passengers in the U.S. irritated at having to turn off their devices could soon see some reprieve, with regulators set to allow wider use of gadgets in flight.
The Federal Aviation Administration is expected to relax the ban on using some types of personal-electronic devices at low altitudes, allowing passengers leeway during taxiing and even takeoffs and landings, according to industry officials and draft recommendations prepared by a high-level advisory panel to the agency.
For fliers, the new rules would likely mean an end to familiar admonitions to turn off and stow all electronic devices. Cellphone calls are expected to remain off limits, however." Link to Original Source top
pbahra (1889666) writes "In the not-too-distant future, airliner cockpit panels are likely to resemble giant iPads, as the current dizzying array of knobs and switches gives way to touch screens adapted from consumer devices.
If implemented quickly enough, new designs unveiled at the Paris International Air Show would mean that by the end of this decade airline pilots will issue basic airborne commands—from changing course to controlling engines—by tapping or dragging icons across screens, people in the industry said.
There are obvious issues though. What happens if there is severe turbulence and the engine fire-extinguisher function is deep in a menu?" Link to Original Source top
pbahra (1889666) writes "When friends of Jordan Casey’s parents lost their jobs in Waterford, a city that has been one of the worst hit by unemployment in Ireland, the then 12-year-old self-taught programmer decided he could do something to help. “Lots and lots of businesses are closing down,” said Mr. Casey, now 13. “Usually when you were in a big city in Ireland, you’d always see people in the city in the night, but it’s just really really lonely and quiet.” “People are losing their jobs and I wanted to help them.” Still at school Mr. Casey turned to the only thing he knew. He decided to try and make a difference by building a company out of his knack for designing computer games." Link to Original Source top
Why Is Angry Birds Addictive? Helsinki Pitches to Be a 'Neurogaming' Hotspot
pbahra (1889666) writes "A Helsinki investment agency is making a pitch for the Finnish capital to become a center of ‘neurogaming’ – using brainwaves to control computer games. The Helsinki Business Hub is hosting a series of meetings bringing together developers from Finland’s game industry and neuroscientists from the University of Helsinki. Neuroscientists have been interested in studying why certain games are so successful and have explored just why Angry Birds, the globally successful from Finnish company Rovio was so addictive. They looked at how the music and the color affected players, down to how you don’t get punished for failures. Although brainwave-measuring technoogy is not new it’s only lately that headsets capable of detecting brainwave patterns from the surface of the head have become cheap enough to be put to commercial applications." Link to Original Source top
pbahra writes "It was hard to avoid the message at the recent Mobile World Congress in Barcelona that Near Field Communication was to have its day. If you had the right phone you could bypass the entrance queues with an NFC-powered "badge" on your phone. The halls were strewed with NFC-powered "smart" posters that would unlock all manner of hidden secrets if you tapped them with your smartphone, from restaurant information to directions to the nearest restrooms. There were demonstrations that allowed you to play music on headphones, test if products were genuine or counterfeit, or that let you replace your car keys or your house keys with just your phone.
NFC has been a decade in the making, and has always been about to be "The Next Big Thing". It is a contactless radio technology that can transmit data between two devices within a few centimeters of each other. Coupled with a security chip to encrypt data, it promises to transform a wide range of consumer experiences. The key word there is "promise"." Link to Original Source top
New Media Ignored in 2,000 Page Review of U.K. Media
pbahra writes "In nearly 20 megabytes of PDFs comprising the Leveson inquiry report into press standards in the U.K. what one might collectively describe as “new media” escapes almost entirely. On the future of media which lies online, Lord Justice Leveson is almost entirely mute. There is no suggestion that bloggers of any size or status will be required to be part of any future proposals even though there is a desire that the more influential blogs might think about it. Whether they will is an entirely different matter." Link to Original Source top
pbahra (1889666) writes "At first glance, there isn’t much that links a Web-based start-up with a rocket-powered car designed not merely to break the land speed record, but to smash it, by traveling at 1,000 miles per hour. Not many start-ups burn £300,000 a month, not many in turn get £25,000 a month in public donations. Not many—in fact none—are pushing the boundaries of engineering in the way that Bloodhound SSC, which aims to hit Mach 1.4 in a South African desert in 2014, is doing. But according to Richard Noble, the ebullient man behind the dream, the 1,000-mph car maybe the ultimate open-source project and has a management structure that start-ups would do well to emulate. How open is Bloodhound? “As open as we can possibly make it,” said Mr. Noble. “We are going to make absolutely everything available. There are no patents.”" Link to Original Source top
pbahra (1889666) writes "There is no shortage of talk about Big Data and the transformational impact it will have, but one sector of the economy that traditionally hasn’t been a heavy user of technology is hoping it can reap the benefits, too. Charities, nonprofits and nongovernmental organizations — or the third sector — are hopeful that the ability not merely to handle vast datasets, which is one attribute of Big Data, but the combination of disparate datasets, will bring new insights to their work, resulting in greater efficiencies on the ground, and better value for money. For example, using satellite data, weather information, population density and other information allows teams to focus efforts on distributing things like malaria nets or doing indoor residual spraying, or even stepping up education programs in areas likely to be blighted." Link to Original Source top
Mobile Operator Grabs 4G Lead in UK But Will Anything Work on It?
pbahra writes "Finally, the U.K. is going to get a 4G mobile-Internet service. For a country that was once at the cutting edge of mobile telephony, its lack of a high-speed mobile broadband was becoming a severe embarrassment. Everything Everywhere, Britain’s largest mobile network operator, has been granted permission by U.K. regulator Ofcom to provide next-generation LTE services as early as Sept. 11. Although Ofcom’s ruling is a significant step for the U.K.’s telecoms future, the choice of frequency — 1,800 MHz — means that devices that can take advantage of the much faster data speeds that LTE offers—theoretically up to 100 megabits a second—are limited. Currently the only significant market using the frequency is South Korea. While 1,800 MHz is in use in a small number of European countries, and in Australia, numbers of users are small in comparison to the U.S.. This means devices may be harder to get and cost more. So anyone who thinks their new iPad is going to zip along at 4G speeds is going to be disappointed; the new iPad only supports U.S. LTE frequencies. For the same reason, those hanging on for the new iPhone, expected to be announced on Sept. 12, in the hope that it will be LTE-compliant are unlikely to have good news. Even if there is a new iPhone, and even if it is LTE enabled, will it operate on Everything Everywhere’s frequency?" Link to Original Source top
pbahra writes "It seems that the markets are as much in love with “Big Data”—the ability to acquire, process and sort vast quantities of data in real time—as with the technology industry. The first Big Data initial public offering hit the market last week to roaring approval. Splunk Inc., which helps businesses organize and make sense of all the information they gather, soared 109% on its first day of trading. Big Data, big price. However, according to a report published last year by McKinsey, there is a problem. “A significant constraint on realizing value from Big Data will be a shortage of talent, particularly of people with deep expertise in statistics and machine learning, and the managers and analysts who know how to operate companies by using insights from Big Data,” the report said. “We project a need for 1.5 million additional managers and analysts in the United States who can ask the right questions and consume the results of the analysis of Big Data effectively.” What the industry needs is a new type of person: the data scientist." Link to Original Source top
Why the Middle East is a Good Place for Women Tech Entrepreneurs
pbahra writes "Conferences for start-ups and entrepreneurs often feature "pitch contests," slots in which aspiring entrepreneurs take to the stage to sell their ideas to the audience. Last month's ArabNet conference, held in the Lebanese capital, was no different. What was different, however, was the number of pitches from female entrepreneurs. The stereotype has it that women in the Middle East are subjugated, oppressed and barely let out of their houses. But if that is the case, how come 40% of the pitches were from women—a higher percentage than is typical in equivalent conferences held in Europe? Nor was this closer-to-equal representation of women unique to ArabNet--other conferences in the region boast similar ratios." Link to Original Source top
Retail is Next Sector to be Disrupted Says EBay CEO
pbahra writes "As the impact of mobile devices takes hold, retailers are set to see the same transformative period that has roiled the media industry, according to eBay Chief Executive John Donahoe. For Mr. Donahoe, the company’s future lies in being a bridge between the physical and virtual worlds of commerce. “People talked about digitization of the media for years, and then the iPad came out,” he said. “What has happened since the iPad came out? Hundreds of millions of people have fundamentally changed how they consume media. The same thing is happening to shopping. Consumers are now in charge. And they are using these devices in ways that no one would have guessed.”" Link to Original Source top
pbahra writes "Kodak’s declaration of bankruptcy earlier this month closed a glorious chapter in the history of photography. With the introduction of the first automatic snapshot camera more than 110 years ago, Kodak transformed photography from an alchemy-like activity dominated by professionals into a hugely popular one that became an integral part of people’s lives. Photography had been mostly confined to professionals who took formal portraits in studios. Kodak got photography out of studios and into family life. Understanding how it did this is vital to grasping the reasons for its failure. Thus, when digital technology arrived in the photographic industry, Kodak inhabited a world that was largely its own creation. There was no one more steeped in it than Kodak. This became obvious to me when I spent a day with Kodak’s top management in their Rochester headquarters in the U.S. about 11 years ago. But by the end of the day, I was convinced that this company was not going to be around much longer. Here are the top five reasons for Kodak’s demise:" Link to Original Source top
pbahra writes "Europeans will take to the streets this weekend in protest at the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement, an international agreement that has given birth to an ocean full of red herrings. That so many have spawned is, say critics, in no small part down to the way in which this most controversial of international agreements was drawn up. If the negotiating parties had set out to stoke the flames of Internet paranoia they could not have done a better job. Accepted there are two things that should never be seen being made in public—laws and sausages—the ACTA process could be a case study of how not to do it. Conducted in secret, with little information shared except a few leaked documents, the ACTA talks were even decried by those who were involved in them." Link to Original Source top
pbahra writes "It isn’t often you get the chance to meet a real revolutionary. It is a term cheapened by misuse, but Khaled el Mufti is a revolutionary. It is no exaggeration to say that the role he played in the Libyan uprising last year was crucial; had he and his telecoms team failed, it isn’t hard to think that Col. Muammar Gadhafi might still be in power. Today, Mr. Mufti is a telecoms adviser to the interim government and heads the e-Libya initiative, a bold plan to use the transformative powers of technology to modernize the Libyan state, overturning 40 years of corruption and misrule under Gadhafi. Mr. Mufti is an unlikely revolutionary, a softly spoken network-security engineer with a degree from Imperial College in London. Almost by chance he was in his native Libya when the revolution took place, working on a project with BT in the capital, Tripoli. When a large protest was called for Feb. 17 in Benghazi, he told his BT colleagues to leave, and he headed for Benghazi. It was quickly apparent that the key communications technology for the rebels wasn’t the internet, but the mobile network. “Having shut off international calls, we thought it was very likely he would shut down the mobile network.” In utmost secrecy Mr. el Mufti and a small team started to plan and build their own system. They had one major stroke of luck." Link to Original Source