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// reBlog Feeds:

// tools


This is one of the drawings for Cloaca, a machine that simulates a digestive system. What does it do? It produces shit.

Originally from
ReBlogged by jacqueline on Feb 5, 2009 at 03:13 PM | Comments (0)

Touch the sashimi you prefer!

Fed up with unfair waiters?
Lets have lunch at "Inamo" then, a fusion restaurant where you can order your dishes, play Naval Battle, choose your favourite wine, have a look to the duck in the kitchen before you eat it, watch the cook prepearing it, book a taxi to get home immediately, if the food wasn't good.
All these things - and many others! - are made possible by a touchscreen on your table.

I wonder if I can also choose my partner to accompany the red wine...

Originally from
ReBlogged by giulia on Dec 17, 2008 at 09:19 AM | Comments (0)

Bomb/Asteroid calculator


A Googlemaps utility to calculate the dimension of a nuclear bomb or asteroid, in any location.


Originally from
ReBlogged by gabo on Dec 9, 2008 at 10:21 AM | Comments (0)

Digital guests at the Creativity Festival


I read the news today.
It seems that this year we cannot miss the Creativity Festival starting
this month in Florence: the “Virtual Renaissance” will be taken to the real world.
What does it mean?
Basically, what was created in Second Life, the virtual/digital environment based
on an electronic simulation ruled by its own inhabitants will be shown and translated into a “real language”.
(Digital Impressionism, Postkitsch, New Pop, l'Avatar Art, Iperformalism, Ultranaif next to Giotto’s!)

I kept reading...
During the exposition, the first “Second life Invasion” will take place in the city.
What does it mean?
We could see the avatars walking around the streets and interact with us.

I kept reading...
The Italian government decided that the educational system in Italy will become completely digital based.
I'm sure they have no idea what it means; but they've probably thought that it sounded cool.

Originally from
ReBlogged by giulia on Oct 3, 2008 at 03:09 PM | Comments (0)

Out There: where Architecture meets Semiotics

What are the first things you think when I say “architecture”?
Heavy long-lasting buildings? Pyramids? Sparky skyscrapers? A thirty floor residence? The tour Eiffel?
If this is what we usually mean by “architecture”, maybe we need to change our beliefs.

As Semiotics tought me, the meaning of things is not simply an “object” (a “chair” is not only "the object that has the shape of a chair”, because a stone on the grass is actually a chair, if you sit on it!) but the consequences related to them (actions but also feelings).
In other terms, the meaning is what things REPRESENT.
Thats why the 11th International Architecture Exhibition in Venice is called “Out there: Architecture Beyond Building”.
Architecture is not just about “buildings” and “constructions” (=objects): we need to look beyond them.

Today the world is extremely dynamic, buildings cannot be something eternal anymore. What we create must be easy to develop, light, avaiable to be changed in order to our temporary needs.
Architecture is the way to create a world that

we feel like home
(Aaron Betsky)

but paradoxically, without building stable houses.
Its a way to communicate our time, our fears, our views.
Buildings dont represent this anymore.

Visual arts and performances, cinema, collage, illustrations, practices, immaginations, deconstructions, experiences, undefined shapes. Sperimentation, and not just an exposition of what already exists.

This is what I saw “Out there”.

Originally from
ReBlogged by giulia on Sep 26, 2008 at 03:11 PM | Comments (0)

Power to (or from?) the music!

If you are in Rotterdam and you wanna have an "energetic" dancing night, Watt is finally open and the Sustainable Dance Floor is a reality.

During the last workshop at Fabrica, Cameron Sinclair asked the students to imagine a soccer team club for young people in Zambia. Thinking of the importance of music and dance in that country, Lars, Pushkar, Priya and I tried to think of how to produce electricity and save consumptions.
That's how I discovered Sustainable Dance Club.

SDC invented an Energy Generating Dance Floor that converts the movement of the dancing
crowd into electricity and uses this power to change the
appearance of the floor’s surface.
All visuals are a continuous real-time interaction between the
clubbers on the floor made visible, allowing every individual’s
actions to contribute to the collective experience.

Doing your part for the environment doesn’t have to be boring

they say...
but that's spectacular isn't it?

Originally from
ReBlogged by giulia on Sep 23, 2008 at 12:16 PM | Comments (0)

10, 000 Peacock Feathers in Foaming Acid

This mesmerising performance was part of the opening night's events at ARS Electronica. Artists Evenlina Domnitch and Dmitry Gelfand used laser light to scan the surfaces of soap bubbles. The membranes of the bubbles provided an infinite landscape of refraction - resulting in the most beautiful and delicate streams of colour. Audio was created by converting the light into sound with a program by Bas van Koolwijk. Evenlina's pink fox-like costume was also very impressive.

Their website is portablepalace.com

Originally from
ReBlogged by lizy on Sep 6, 2008 at 01:01 PM | Comments (0)

A video without cameras

Of course Radiohead again. Their latest video, "House of Cards" uses real time 3D recording instead of cameras, “utilizing highly technical structured light and Lidar laser-enhanced scanners to model lead singer Thom Yorke and provide an otherworldly narrative accompaniment to the song.”

An interview with the director James Frost, behind-the-scenes footage and all the information about this complex, innovative process, can be found here. Also, visit the video's interactive component, where you can actually control the 3D data of Yorke's head.
How not to love them.

Originally from
ReBlogged by karol de rueda on Jul 29, 2008 at 02:14 AM | Comments (0)

You're not smart

Computer problems? Duh can help, but before, they have something to tell you:
“It's better if we just clear this up before you hire us. Clients are stupid. All of them. No exceptions. If they weren't stupid, they wouldn't hire us. The only smart thing they ever did was to hire us. So perhaps they're not completely stupid. But they're not not-stupid enough to be considered anything less than stupid. And you're not us. You're not smart. You're the client. That makes you stupid.”


“Clients are always calling us with stupid questions. We hate that. But we charge them a lot of money, so we have to pretend to like them. And we have to pretend they're not stupid when they're saying really stupid shit. And that's not easy. But we make it look easy because we're so smart.”

Originally from
ReBlogged by karol de rueda on Mar 31, 2008 at 03:00 PM | Comments (0)

Ending Aging Forever

Here is a funny interview with the genius Aubry De Grey (and his magnificent beard) on The Colbert Report talking about his research on life extension with the Methuselah Foundation.

Also check out his talk on the TED website.

Originally from
ReBlogged by tad on Feb 13, 2008 at 01:59 PM | Comments (0)

Mind control

An interesting article about a "device emits an ultra low radio frequency that helps decrease employee tension in the workplace, thus raising effectiveness and productivity."

Read more here.

Is this a good thing or a bad thing?
(Thanks Michael.)

Originally from
ReBlogged by tad on Feb 7, 2008 at 10:05 AM | Comments (0)


Genius Oriol Ferrer Mesi , former fabricante, keeps playing around and having fun with his computer, and this time with bugs too.
Can you imagine your screen full of living creatures instead of pixels?

BugMirror from oriol Ferrer Mesi on Vimeo.

BugMirror is a different screen saver; it’s packed with bugs that move, change color and interact with each other. They think independently reacting to camera input and trying to mimic what the camera sees.
Your face formed by hundreds of bugs? You have to try that!
Find Oriol’s unique software here.
¡Muy bien Matador!

Originally from
ReBlogged by karol de rueda on Nov 26, 2007 at 11:45 AM | Comments (0)

Future things again

Oh no, the future keeps coming and it keeps coming too quickly.

Microsoft's magic table thing, where you can use your fingers to resize things and things like that:

Google's street thing, where you can zoom into streets and things:

Originally from
ReBlogged by matt prins on Jun 5, 2007 at 06:15 PM | Comments (0)

Philips, you've done it again

Paint with light and then animate it... with magic?

Originally from
ReBlogged by matt prins on May 3, 2007 at 11:36 AM | Comments (0)

The Great Fire Wall


With this new web site you can check if your website is available in China... or if the Great Fire Wall has censored you... www.greatfirewallofchina.org

Originally from
ReBlogged by christian etter on Mar 9, 2007 at 12:18 PM | Comments (4)

Report: Man dies after 'marathon' online session

An obese 26-year-old man in northeastern China died after a "marathon" online gaming session over the Lunar New Year holiday, state media said on Wednesday. Link

Originally from
ReBlogged by andy rementer on Feb 28, 2007 at 10:10 AM | Comments (0)

Stop buying this crap

Former Gizmodo editor Joel Johnson has a new column -- on Gizmodo -- in which he excoriates gadget bloggers and their readers for buying "chromed turds" that are broken, DRMed, overhyped, and useless. The rant is nothing short of breathtaking -- Johnson hits so many nails on the head, he's practically an air-hammer.


"And you guys just ate it up. Kept buying shitty phones and broken media devices green and dripping with DRM. You broke the site, clogging up the pipe like retarded salmon, to read the latest announcements of the most trivial jerk-off products, completely ignoring the stories about technology actually making a difference to real human beings, because you wanted a new chromed robot turd to put in your pocket to impress your friends and make you forget for just a few minutes, blood coursing as you tremblingly cut through the blister pack, that your life is utterly void of any lasting purpose...

Stop buying this crap. Just stop it. You don't need it. Wait a year until the reviews come out and the other suckers too addicted to having the very latest and greatest buy it, put up a review, and have moved on to something else. Stop buying broken products and then shrugging your shoulders when it doesn't do what it is supposed to. Stop buying products that serve any other master than you. Use older stuff that works. Make it yourself. Only buy new stuff from companies that have proven themselves good servants of their customers in the past. Complaining online about this stuff helps, but really, just stop buying it...

Get it together: every single one of these consumer electronics companies should be approached as the enemy. They work for us. Hold their feet to the fire when they say their product is going to change even a small part of our lives. Circle back again in six months when they're shilling the incremental upgrade and ask them why the last version didn't cut the mustard..."

link (via boingboing)

Originally from
ReBlogged by andy rementer on Feb 15, 2007 at 11:55 AM | Comments (1)

Type with flickr

fabrica typo

Marcello did send me this link this morning. It is a tool which uses the oneletter group on flickr to spell your words. Ruedi would have been exited about that: http://metaatem.net/words/

Originally from
ReBlogged by christian etter on Jan 30, 2007 at 10:19 AM | Comments (0)

tweeking toys

Casper Electronics' website shows you schematics so you can tweek your own toys into magical music making fun parts. Including "Little Tikes Megaphone," "Barbie Bending" and "Speak and Spell Bending" as shown below. The site includes sound bit samples!


From Casper: "Over the past 5 years I have worked for dozens of different artists, musicians and collectors and have modified hundreds of different electronic devices ranging from children’s toys to car horns to talking wrist watches."

Originally from
ReBlogged by matt prins on Dec 14, 2006 at 12:33 PM | Comments (3)

HP to America: "Keep Eating!"

I'm speechless. No, really, this has to be a sick dream.

via happy accidents

Originally from
ReBlogged by andy rementer on Oct 19, 2006 at 10:12 AM | Comments (9)

rechargable solar panel

The idea of solar panel charging to battery isn't so new anymore, but after reading this post from Treehugger, I wonder why I haven't already got one of these:

With this portable solar panel, I charge my MP3 player, a portable amplifier, a set of battery-powered Sony surround sound speakers, a cellular phone, a digital camera, two LED lamps, a LED booklight, and a LED flashlight. If you are already positioning yourself to optimize sunlight, it is quite simple to do this. If I added a $50 solar panel, I can power two laptop computer, and have all of my audio-visual and computer devices running on renewable energy.


The charger outputs 3.6/5.5V at 300mA, which works for most gadgets. Now instead of saying "oh, I forgot to charge my cellphone", I can say "oh, it's cloudy, i can't charge my cellphone". Awesome.

Originally from
ReBlogged by ann p on Sep 22, 2006 at 10:42 AM | Comments (4)

OOOoooo AAAaaaaa

These are SO COOL! It makes me want to order them right away, but with Italian postal service, I might be gone before I get them... but man, check these out!


Moo prints little mini cards from your favorite flickr photo collections and you can use them, as, yes, business card that we all dread designing! They are half the size of a normal business cards (which makes it even cooler), The process seems to be streamlined with your flickr login, AND if you are a pro member, you get 10 free ones!

via the ever so cool, Boing Boing

Originally from
ReBlogged by ann p on Sep 20, 2006 at 12:15 PM | Comments (7)

New Italian invention: the Laundry Index

It's been very very rainy up here in the North for the past, oh, week or so. During the fall where the weather is mostly unpredictable, you never know when it's a good day for laundry and as a result we all suffer from wearing dampy clothes and using smelly towel (because it never dries!), don't we?

A Milan-based web company have launched stendibiancheria.net, a service that depicts the Laundry Index for the day. Ranging on a scale of 1-100, the bigger the number, the better chance of having your laundry dried for the day. Combining some kind of mathematical formula with the weather forecast, the company arrives at this index that will help you plan the day.

The service is only limited to the city dwellers for now, but if you are in Milan, give it a try (I guess us Trevisians can try the Venice index). They have a free text-messaging service so that you receive an SMS of the Laundry Index just in time to dry your clothes before heading off to work.

Read more: Wired News

Originally from
ReBlogged by ann p on Sep 19, 2006 at 09:20 AM | Comments (3)

Go to a class in a game

You can do just about everything you ever want to do in a video game: shoot an AK47, drive the best car, save a life, die and reborn (again and again and again) and now, you can go to Harvard Law.

A new Harvard class entitled CyberOne: Law in the Court of Public Opinion will be jointly held in the real Harvard Law School and in the virtual world of Second Life.

via Joystiq, Eyebeam reBlog

Originally from
ReBlogged by ann p on Sep 14, 2006 at 02:44 PM | Comments (0)

Have you seen the SIZE of that thing?

Apple announced the new iPod shuffle and nano yesterday, and while we don't blog much about gadgets because other people do it better, this one is sort of designy and cute and just damn small...


the size is perfect for leaving it in your jeans pocket, forget about it, and throw in the washing machine.

Originally from
ReBlogged by ann p on Sep 13, 2006 at 10:43 AM | Comments (4)

Lumalive, ready for commercialization

"with Lumalive technology, you can create fabrics that carry dynamic advertisements, graphics, and even constantly changing color surfaces"

well, that's cool and all.. but somehow this is all so ... cheesy looking... i probably wouldn't be caught dead walking around with a light up logo. where's design?!

Lumalive from Phillips:

via Infosthetics

Originally from
ReBlogged by ann p on Sep 7, 2006 at 05:03 PM | Comments (1)

This farmer grows robots

Photo from Repubblica.it photogallery

Wu Yulu is a a farmer in rural China who builds robots from scrap found at rubbish dumps. He has built 26 robots ranging from small biomemetic bots to big multi-legged walkers. Like many robot inventors, he has been burned by exploding batteries, fallen into debt, and had a short-circuiting robot burn down his house. Now he works for a local Chinese TV.

Read his story from People's Daily online

Originally from
ReBlogged by silvia on Jul 28, 2006 at 03:38 PM | Comments (29)

Google Vision


"What If You Could Google Objects, Not Just Words?"
Designed by Callum Peden, “Google Vision” is basically a “gadget about the size of a cell phone with built-in GPS that scrolls out to reveal a flexible screen — purpose would be to use image recognition and GPS data to tell you what you’re looking at.”
The image would be compared against a database of objects known to be near the physical location identified by the GPS electronics

Originally from Techeblog

Originally from
ReBlogged by silvia on Jul 28, 2006 at 11:21 AM | Comments (3)

Dark Source: Public Trust and the Secret at the Heart of the New Voting Machines by Ben Rubin


From Neural.it
One of the most senseless use of technology is electronic voting. With no advantages except from the speed (real time) county of votes, this 'innovation' is simply an enormous swindle. In fact the votes are stored as files, so infinitely more falsifiable than the one written on the traditional paper, and the worst is that the whole process is managed by proprietary software, so with unstable and unintelligible methods. Part of the Weibel-Latour ZKM's 'Making Things Public' exhibition, Dark Source by Ben Rubin makes this paradox even more evident.

Continue reading "Dark Source: Public Trust and the Secret at the Heart of the New Voting Machines by Ben Rubin"

Originally from
ReBlogged by silvia on Jul 27, 2006 at 03:49 PM | Comments (4)

Man and his clone droid

Can you say, the future is here!?!?

Japanese roboticist Hiroshi Ishiguro clones himself, android-style. His incredibly lifelike mechanical double, "Geminoid HI-1," sometimes takes his place in meetings and classes.

Geminoid can be operated remotely so the robot reproduces the voice, posture and lip movements of Ishiguro, who wears a motion-capture system. A mouseclick raises a hand or finger.

Ishiguro, whose job is teaching at Osaka University, an hour's drive away, designed Geminoid so he could "robot in" to his classes and skip the commute. As he steps out from behind a curtain like the Wizard of Oz, standing beside his robot self, the shift is disconcerting.

Read the whole story from Wired: Meet the Remote-Control Self

Originally from
ReBlogged by ann p on Jul 21, 2006 at 03:16 PM | Comments (1)

World’s Priciest Mobile Phone


From bornrich.org

Here is something that will bring you out of the illusion of owning the priciest of mobile phones. We are talking about the Diamond Crypto Smartphone, designed by luxury accessories maker Peter Aloisson. This unique object de art is priced at a crisp $1.3 million and is tagged as the costliest in the world.
This one features a cover adorned with 50 diamonds, 10 of which are the rare blue ones. Apart from this, it also features s few sections made in rose gold as well.

Read more

Originally from
ReBlogged by silvia on Jul 19, 2006 at 04:40 PM | Comments (4)

Pain Ray and Death Ray - this is not a game.

Having started the week with news surrounding war in the middle east, I don't feel like blogging about design, art, funny or weird things today. It is quite hard to chew down all this press, but here's a new item that might be educational...

Pain Ray is a nickname for "Active Denial System", which is a new weapon developed out of "directed energy" research for the U.S. military. The Pain Ray 'fires out millimeter waves -- a sort of cousin of microwaves, in the 95 GHz range. The invisible beams penetrate just 1/64th of an inch beneath the skin, directly affecting the nerve endings, and a 2-second burst can heat the skin to 130 degrees. Charles Heal, a widely recognized authority on nonlethal weapons who has dubbed the ray the "Holy Grail of crowd control," likened it to having a hot iron pressed against the skin. ' (link)

Pain Ray is non lethal. It does not kill, but hurts. Hurts a lot.

The next we have on the agenda is the Death Ray, a weapon that fires out microwave, similar to ones we have in our kitchen. If you have seen what the microwaves can do to a marshmallow, you can probably imagine what a microwave ray gun can do to a living body.

There is an Italian-made documentary about the existence of these weapons: http://www.rainews24.it/ran24/inchieste/guerre_stellari_iraq.asp
(also available in English)

Brett Wanger president of the California Center for Strategic Studies have started an online petition calling for U.S. Congress to oppose the development and deployment of these crazy things. You can sign it too.

If Congress somehow pass these weapons for usage (allegedly they've planned to deploy it in Iraq), I hope they test it on the congressmen and women first.

Via BenettonTalk

Originally from
ReBlogged by ann p on Jul 17, 2006 at 05:35 PM | Comments (3)

SolarVenti: A Solar Powered Dehumidifier


SolarVenti is a solar powered ventilator and dehumidifier from the U.K. The device works by warming cold night air, and moving it inside your home or vehicle. The designer explains the operation this way: "After a cold night all of the atmospheric moisture is lying on the ground as dew or frost leaving a very dry but cold atmosphere. SolarVenti takes in this cold dry air and warms it before pumping it into your house where it sucks out moisture from the fabric of your property and replaces the colder damper atmosphere." The device has no operating costs, and it can be fitted to any South, South West or South East facing wall where there is little or no shade. Prices start at £323. :: SolarVenti via Red Ferret

i wish i could afford one of these...

Originally from
ReBlogged by ann p on Jul 6, 2006 at 02:30 PM | Comments (4)

The homeless tech scene

Wired News has an interesting article about the homeless and their usage of technologies:

Many of those now living without a permanent roof over their heads have cell phones in their pockets or laptop computers at their hips. While people living in shelters and alleys have found it difficult to cross social divides, the digital divide seems to disappear on the streets. Nearly all homeless people have e-mail addresses, according to Michael Stoops, director of the National Coalition for the Homeless. "More have e-mail than have post office boxes," Stoops said. "The internet has been a big boon to the homeless."

Helping the homeless get e-mail addresses has been a priority for years at shelters across the country. And in an age when most every public library in the nation offers internet access, the net has proven a perfect communication tool for those without a firm real-world address.

"Because of technology, people are able to keep in contact with their families," Stoops said. And perhaps most importantly, they are able to get some footing in society regardless of how removed from it they may feel.

Homeless with technologies also earn income online, create MySpace accounts, blog, etc. The blogging scene among the homeless is actually quite a hot topic.


Originally from
ReBlogged by ann p on Jun 23, 2006 at 12:23 PM | Comments (0)

iBuzz the iPod

Ok, forget all the gag gadgets I ever blog about, this is what I call infusion of design and technology:


The iBuzz is the sexiest iPod accessory available. Hook the controller to your jeans, connect your iPod (or any other variety of mp3 player), and place the bullet wherever you like. The bullet will vibrate in rhythm with your music. The intensity increases with the volume of your music, or can be increased via the controller.

...comes with two silicone-rubber attachments: one for clitoral or penetrative stimulation, the other for use as a vibrating cock ring.

Available online at Babeland, only $55 USD!

Originally from
ReBlogged by ann p on Jun 22, 2006 at 12:03 PM | Comments (0)

Decapitated bear USB flash drive


Oh yes...another superfluous flash drive modification. But hey - awesome choice for baby showers, kids' birthdays, or any occasion that calls for a cuddly 256MB beheaded bear.

via ohgizmo


HAHAHAHAHAHA... oh, man, why didn\'t i think of this...

Originally from
ReBlogged by ann p on Jun 21, 2006 at 03:44 PM | Comments (0)

PirateBay tracker is back online

Cory Doctorow: Notorious torrent-tracker site ThePirateBay is making good on its vow to come back online following the Swedish police raid on its servers. The site is back online, and promises that searches will be working today. The raid reportedly came as a result of US government pressure on the Sweden. Link (Thanks, Joel!)


Originally from
ReBlogged by ann p on Jun 5, 2006 at 04:50 PM | Comments (0)

Web users to patrol us borders

A few days ago i was appalled to read that Scott Silverman, from VeriChip, had proposed implanting RFID tags in immigrant and guest workers. During an interview on "Fox & Friends," he suggested using their RFID implants to register workers at the border, and then verify their identities in the workplace.

In a related story, Colombian President Alvaro Uribe allegedly said he would consider having Colombian seasonal workers have microchips implanted in their bodies before they are permitted to enter the US for seasonal work.


Today came the news that Texas plans to enlist web users worldwide in its fight against illegal immigration by offering live surveillance footage of the Mexican border on the internet.

The cameras will be trained on sections of the 1,000-mile (1,600km) border known to be favoured by illegal immigrants. Web users who spot a suspicious crossing will be able to alert the authorities by telephoning a number free of charge.

Meanwhile, California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger has sent National Guard soldiers to his state's border with Mexico to bolster security along the Mexican border.

Besides, a group of US civilian volunteers that has been patrolling the Mexican border began last week building a fence along a section of the frontier. The Minutemen group started erecting the fence on privately-owned land in Arizona on Saturday, saying it is "doing the job the federal government will not do".

Via quien vigila al vigilante, see networked_performance and space and culture for an english version of the story.

Image from Border film project.

Originally from
ReBlogged by ann p on Jun 5, 2006 at 03:10 PM | Comments (0)

digital pyrotechnic infernoptix

a truly amazing 96-inch 'screen' that uses computer-controlled bursts of fire to create scrolling text, simple animations & freehand sketching in a 12 x 7 pixel array. as an example of "high-impact visual & audio entertainment", one should imagine "a 6 inch fireball for each of those demure little pixels of a conventional display, & the image jumps from the screen in licks & bursts of flame".
see also information percolator for a conceptually opposite screen installation.

this is crazy and great at the same time. it reminds me of Yves Klein\'s huge panel of gas torch installation...

Originally from
ReBlogged by ann p on May 23, 2006 at 12:16 PM | Comments (2)

matrixx 3d display

the world’s largest 3D-display, measuring 8 metres in width, 4 metres in height & 2 metres in depth, consisting of a matrix of 8.000 LEDs with table tennis balls around them. its dynamic applications include 3D snake, 3D pong, 3D duckhunt & a SMS (text messaging) display.
see also 3d display cube.
[tudelft.nl|also interactivearchitecture.org]


Originally from
ReBlogged by ann p on May 16, 2006 at 11:33 AM | Comments (4)

Soldiers to sport life recorders

David Pescovitz: DARPA is checking out wearable systems to "augment a soldier's recall and reporting capability." As part of the Advanced Soldier Sensor Information System and Technology (ASSIST) project, the National Institute of Standards and Technology are testing wearable cameras, GPS systems, and context-aware software to generate automated "reports" of what the soldier experienced on the battlefield. From the NIST Tech Beat:
 Multimedia Pub Web 853 WebThe sensors are expected to capture, classify and store such data as the sound of acceleration and deceleration of vehicles, images of people (including suspicious movements that might not be seen by the soldiers), speech and specific types of weapon fire.

A capacity to give GPS locations, an ability to translate Arabic signs and text into English, as well as on-command video recording also are being demonstrated in Aberdeen. Sensor system software is expected to extract keywords and create an indexed multimedia representation of information collected by different soldiers. For comparison purposes, the soldiers wearing the sensors will make an after-action report based on memory and then supplement that after-action report with information learned from the sensor data.

Originally posted by David Pescovitz from Boing Boing Blog, ReBlogged by Joel Holmberg on May 15, 2006 at 02:32 PM

should they just be robot already?

Via Eyebeam reBlog

Originally from
ReBlogged by ann p on May 16, 2006 at 11:30 AM | Comments (458)

High Voltage Tesla Coil

98272227 4F6F848Bd4
MAKE Flickr photo pool member Tesla1000 has a ton of photos of experiments with high voltage - I like this photo of one of the experiments in the suburbs. Link.

[Read this article] [Comment on this article]

Originally from MAKE Magazine, ReBlogged by Joel Holmberg on May 14, 2006 at 09:19 PM


Via Eyebeam reBlog

Originally from
ReBlogged by ann p on May 15, 2006 at 11:26 AM | Comments (0)

MIT students' tricked-out dorm-room automation system

Cory Doctorow:
Some MIT students have transformed their room with a homebrew automation system called MIDAS: Multifunction In-Dorm Automation System. The system is incredibly comprehensive, automating party effects, alarms, music, surveillance cams and much more -- and they've documented it in loving detail on this page. Link (via Digg)

give it up to the nerds...

Via Boing Boing

Originally from
ReBlogged by ann p on May 12, 2006 at 12:29 PM | Comments (0)

Soft Electric


At the ITP (Interactive Telecommunications Program) Spring Show there were plenty of lovely girl-gadgets on display. This capelet, titled Soft Electric by Grace Kim was among them. From Grace's site:

"The capelet was knitted and felted by hand. It is embroidered with conductive thread. The thread carries electric current to LEDs that are beaded into the embroidery, making the electronic current part of the garment's adornment. The LED beads flicker, acting like a sequin in the light."

There are links to video of the garment in action at the project site. I saw the piece on display and can attest to the lovely craft-conscious approach taken by the creator. So don't think blinkie lights, think blendie lights which sparkle prettily like little jewels.

more from ITP!

Originally from
ReBlogged by ann p on May 10, 2006 at 02:31 PM | Comments (1)

Inflatable Breasts Dress

Remember the Bikini lifejackets or the Nipple enhancers Samantha and Miranda were wearing in Sex & the City?

Well, Doria Fan has something better for you (unless you'd rather go for drastic solutions.)


Her Inflatable Breasts Dress allows you pump up your breasts to whatever size you want, and adjust them on the fly. Because of the location of the valves, you can inflate your breasts before you put on the dress, or have someone else blow them up for you while you wear it.

One wearer said the dress was very comfortable and also gave her a different sense of personal space. With large inflated breasts, she felt like she had a protective zone.

More inflatable garments: the Fat Suits, the irresistible Uniblow outfits, inflatable robot suit, Modes for urban moods and inflatable wedding dress (new link), Moreno Ferrari, Wearable crisis management, Aeolian rides.

I proudly announce that this project is from my school! Though that nipple effect is a little weird, and you *blow* into the brests?? Little perv!

Via we make money not art

Originally from
ReBlogged by ann p on May 10, 2006 at 02:27 PM | Comments (86)

Tim Berners-Lee on the neutrality of the net

Tim Berners-Lee has posted on his blog why we must have the neutrality of the net.From the post."It is of the utmost importance that,if I connect to the Internet,and you connect to the Internet,that we can then run any Internet application we want,without discrimination as to who we are or what we are doing. We pay for connection to the Net as though it were a cloud which magically delivers our packets. We may pay for a higher or a lower quality of service. We may pay for a service which has the characteristics of being good for video,or quality audio.But we each pay to connect to the Net,but no one can pay for exclusive access to me. When I was a child,I was impressed by the fact that the installation fee for a telephone was everywhere the same in the UK,whether you lived in a city or on a mountain,just as the same stamp would get a letter to either place.To actually design legislation which allows creative interconnections between different service providers,but ensures neutrality of the Net as a whole may be a difficult task.It is a very important one.The US should do it now,and,if it turns out to be the only way,be as draconian as to require financial isolation between IP providers and businesses in other layers.The Internet is increasingly becoming the dominant medium binding us.The neutral communications medium is essential to our society.It is the basis of a fair competitive market economy.It is the basis of democracy,by which a community should decide what to do.It is the basis of science,by which humankind should decide what is true.Let us protect the neutrality of the net".

Neutrality of the Net

Originally posted by Jim_Downing from Smart Mobs, ReBlogged by George Hotelling on May 4, 2006 at 08:39 AM

Originally from
ReBlogged by ann p on May 5, 2006 at 12:12 PM | Comments (0)

A web server on your mobile phone

Blethers.com reports the Nokia Research Center has been working on a project to put a web server on your mobile phone.

"We (Nokia) believe that being able to run a globally accessible personal website on your mobile phone has the potential of changing the Internet landscape. If every mobile phone or even every smartphone initially, is equipped with a webserver then very quickly most websites will reside on mobile phones. That is bound to have some impact not only on how mobile phones are perceived but also on how the web evolves.


Originally from
ReBlogged by ann p on May 4, 2006 at 06:09 PM | Comments (0)

Teacher strike threat over boy's cleavage photo

Teachers may go on strike after a pupil who secretly photographed a female member of staff's cleavage was allowed to return to school, reports the UK Telelgraph.

"The boy was caught by another member of staff while adding a lewd caption to the camera phone image. It is believed the picture, which was sent to a friend's phone, was taken as the teacher was bending over in class.

The boy was expelled from St Cuthbert's Catholic High School, in Benwell, Newcastle upon Tyne, but his parents won an appeal to have him reinstated.

... Teachers in the region had already complained of becoming the victims of "bullying" with pupils using mobile phones to film or photograph them for their friends' amusement."


-- Teacher's Suggestive Cell Phone Video Surfaces

-- Teacher's saucy video is a hit

-- Nude teacher mobile snap wows Cyprus

sorry, i think this is kind of funny

Originally from
ReBlogged by ann p on May 4, 2006 at 01:13 PM | Comments (93)

color changing concrete

colorchangingconcrete.jpgthe idea of color changing concrete that can be used for information display was originally posted a while ago, but now seems to have finally reached the prototype phase. the system is able to dynamically display patterns, numbers & text in concrete surfaces. potential application range from simple products for the home to large-scale architectural installations.
[chromastone.com & chromastone.com (mov)|thnkx Martin]

Originally from
ReBlogged by ann p on Apr 27, 2006 at 11:28 AM | Comments (89)

The Beastie Boys are Open Source!

The Beastie BoysYou may have heard by now about the ground-breaking Beastie Boys concert documentary Awesome; I Fucking Shot That! Well, if you weren’t lucky enough to catch it at Sundance or SXSW, you may still get your chance for a sneak preview. The film opens in limited cites on March 31 but wouldn’t it be so much cooler to be the first on your block to see it? And what if you could watch it at the same time as thousands of other fans across the country, or at least in your time zone? On March 23, Awesome will be digitally presented at nearly 200 theaters nationwide at 8pm local time through Big Screen Concerts.

I am really excited by the idea of cinema as a national (regional or global) event – moviegoers experiencing the show at the same time as the rest of the country. According to their press release, THINKFilm is pursuing a non-traditional release strategy in keeping with the imaginative style of filmmaking as well as the punk rock nature of the band. Fans who attend the March 23 preview screenings will also see "A Day in the Life of Nathanial Hornblower," a 30-minute David Cross short created specifically for this one-time event, which will then “self-destruct,” never to be seen again (except online, of course).

The Beastie Boys have long been known for their DIY attitudes and support of mix culture. They encourage fans to download samples and a capella tracks from their website to create mash-ups. They took that sentiment one step further in the creating of Awesome; I Fucking Shot That! Awesome is not your average concert film as you may be able to guess from the title. The majority of the footage was shot by fans themselves. At a concert at Madison Square Garden, the band handed out 50 Hi8 cameras to fans in the audience with the only instructions: Start the camera at the beginning of the show and don’t stop it until it’s finished. The result is a concert film from the view of the fans themselves and celebrating the concert-going experience. The shots are shaky and grainy and you can’t always see the band. One fan filmed his trip to the bathroom and another documented his successful attempt to get backstage. It’s truly a film about the fans, by the fans, for the fans, and a real model of participatory media. I don’t know about you, but on March 23, I’m fucking going to see this movie!

(Posted by Micki Krimmel in Global Culture – Art, Music, Fashion, and Travel at 10:28 PM)

Via WorldChanging: Another World Is Here

Originally from
ReBlogged by ann p on Mar 22, 2006 at 05:59 PM | Comments (4)

Google Mars

google_mars.jpgCombine two WorldChanging obsessions -- online map systems and the planet Mars -- and you have the potential for something that could keep us happily clicking and playing for hours. Google has now unleashed Google Mars, a Google Maps site using satellite imagery of the Red Planet. It's not as powerful as Google Earth, but it's by far the most easily-accessible way to get to know the fourth planet from the sun. (Google suggests that a plug-in to bring Mars data to the Google Earth engine may soon be on its way.)

The site includes three different presentations of the Martian surface:

  • Elevation - A shaded relief map, generated with data from the Mars Orbiter Laser Altimeter (MOLA) on NASA's Mars Global Surveyor spacecraft. This map is color-coded by altitude, so you can use the color key at the lower left to estimate elevations.
  • Visible - A mosaic of images taken by the Mars Orbiter Camera (MOC) on NASA's Mars Global Surveyor spacecraft. MOC is like the digital camera you have at home. Basically, this is what your eyes would see if you were in orbit around Mars.
  • Infrared - A mosaic of infrared images taken by the Thermal Emission Imaging System (THEMIS) on NASA's Mars Odyssey spacecraft. Warmer areas appear brighter, and colder areas are darker. Clouds and dust in the atmosphere are transparent in the infrared, making this the sharpest global map of Mars that's ever been made.
o view flags pointing out the planet's physical features, as well as the locations of the various landers (both successful and otherwise).

When you first hit Google Mars, you're presented with a colorful elevation map. Blue represents land below the Martian average elevation, rising to green, yellow, and orange, with red representing the higher elevations, and white the peaks of mountains. It's no coincidence that this color range strongly suggests what a lightly terraformed Mars might aspire to look like; the elevation map, despite having the least-realistic colors of the three, does the best job at making Mars look like a world, not just a rocky planet.

The announcement of Google Mars was well-timed; the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO) successfully reached Martian orbit on Friday, and when it finishes its months-long aerobraking maneuver (using the Martian atmosphere to slow its speed), it will give us by far the most detailed images of Mars yet. Among MRO's tools are a camera with a resolution of one foot per pixel and a broadband transceiver, giving the Mars science fleet a high-speed orbiting router. Let's hope that Google gets the MRO pictures added to the Google Mars dataset as quickly as they can.

(Posted by Jamais Cascio in Pulling Back the Curtain – Information and Knowledge Resources at 12:44 PM)

Originally from
ReBlogged by ann p on Mar 16, 2006 at 10:00 AM | Comments (0)

Social engineering prank makes athlete choke

Mark Frauenfelder: Bruce Shneier has a great story about some people at California Berkeley who created a fake co-ed named Victoria to chat online with Gabe Pruitt, USC's starting guard.
On Saturday, at the game, when Pruitt was introduced in the starting lineup, the chants began: "Victoria, Victoria." One of the fans held up a sign with her phone number.

The look on Pruitt's face when he turned to the bench after the first Victoria chant was priceless. The expression was unlike anything ever seen in collegiate or pro sports. Never did a chant by the opposing crowd have such an impact on a visiting player. Pruitt was in total shock. (This is the only picture I could find.)

The chant "Victoria" lasted all night. To add to his embarrassment, transcripts of their IM conversations were handed out to the bench before the game: "You look like you have a very fit body." "Now I want to c u so bad."

Pruitt ended up a miserable 3-for-13 from the field.

ier.com/blog/archives/2006/03/basketball_pran.html">Link (thanks, Mark!)


Originally from
ReBlogged by ann p on Mar 16, 2006 at 09:50 AM | Comments (2)

The Wild Web of China: Sex and Drugs, Not Reform

Unchecked freedoms that exist on the Web despite the government's filtering efforts may be ushering in an age of social change.

Quote from the article:

"Chinese entrepreneurs who started out brazenly selling downloadable pirated music and movies from online storefronts have extended their product lines — peddling drugs and sex, stolen cars, firearms and even organs for transplanting."

"...On any of China's leading search engines, enter sensitive political terms like "Tiananmen Square" or "Falun Gong," and the computer is likely to crash or simply offer a list of censored Web sites. But terms like "hot sex" or "illegal drugs" take users to dozens of links to Web sites allowing them to download sex videos, gain entry to online sports gambling dens or even make purchases of heroin. The scams are flourishing..." (click the header link to go to the article)

Originally from
ReBlogged by ann p on Mar 8, 2006 at 02:32 PM | Comments (0)

The Art of Detouch

Like a good plastic surgeon, the best photo retouch artists never leave a trace of their cuts and fills when they make bodies more seductive. But thanks to a project developed by members of OpenLab, Eyebeam's research and development fellowship program for technology projects, the unseen work of the retouch artist is coming back to haunt perfected images. 'The Art of Detouch' is an application that generates a pixel-by-pixel comparison of a picture before and after retouching. It then isolates and displays the altered elements using transitional animations and multiple color codes to indicate the location and intensity of the digital nips and tucks. The silhouettes that result are ghostly outlines of excess hair, skin, and clothing that were removed during the retouch process. The project contains a strong element of social critique--it draws attention to the heavy manipulation that goes into representations of the female body--but its real brilliance is measured by how mesmerizing the animated visualizations are to watch.

Originally from Rhizome.org

Originally from
ReBlogged by silvia on Mar 3, 2006 at 12:45 PM | Comments (0)

scubdoo - underwater scooter

ScubadoosideshotYou are seated on your ScubaDoo, with your head and shoulders within a clear dome, your air constantly replenished from the external compressor, enabling you to breathe normally! At a rate of 2.5 knots you’re able to ride amongst the spectacular underwater world, or remain stationary while you feed the fish.

ScubaDoo - underwater scooter

(via byrdhouse)

Originally from
ReBlogged by ann p on Mar 2, 2006 at 11:41 AM | Comments (3)

Enzyme computer could live inside you

Researchers at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem have built a molecular calculator that uses enzymes to perform calculations. The team believe enzyme-powered computers could eventually be implanted into the body and used to, for example, tailor the release of drugs to a specific person's metabolism.


Enzymes are already used to assist calculations using specially encoded DNA. These DNA computers could one day surpass the speed and power of existing silicon computers because they can perform many calculations in parallel and pack a vast number of components into a tiny space.

But this enzyme computer is not designed for speed – it can take several minutes to perform a calculation. Rather, it might eventually be incorporated into bio-sensing equipment and used, for example, to monitor and react to a patient's response to particular dosages of a drug.

"We feel you could implant an enzyme computer into the body and use it to calculate an entire metabolic pathway," explains Itamar Willner.

"If such counters could be engineered inside living cells, then we can imagine them playing a role in applications such as intelligent drug delivery, where a therapeutic agent is generated at the site of a problem," says Martyn Amos from University of Exeter, UK. "Counters would also offer a biological 'safety valve', to prevent engineered cells proliferating in an uncontrolled fashion."

Details in New Scientist.

Originally from
ReBlogged by ann p on Feb 24, 2006 at 11:46 AM | Comments (20)

A Univerisity without WifI

fgilbert1.jpg As we write this sitting three feet from a wireless router, we wonder about Fred Gilbert, who will not allow wireless internet into Lakehead University in Thunder Bay, Ontario, out of concerns about health consequences of EMF's (electric and magnetic fields) . “These are particularly relevant in younger people (who have) fast-growing tissues, and most of our student body are late teenagers and still growing, so it’s just a matter of taking precautions and providing an environment that doesn’t have a potential risk associated risk,” he said. We can't quite imagine a University these days without WIFI, but "There are plenty of computers around campus where students can access the Internet 24 hours a day, so it’s not like they’re cut off," Gilbert said. Gilbert added he believes there are many environmental impacts that are not manifest for 30 to 40 years after exposure. “Second-hand tobacco exposure is a case in point,” he said. “We’re just finding out now what some of those impacts are. Asbestos is another example.”
Hmm. We are putting on our tinfoil hat and moving our router. ::IT Business

... also around Treviso, you some time spot people protesting against the G3 for EMF pollution... probably carries the same arguement.

Originally from
ReBlogged by ann p on Feb 22, 2006 at 10:44 AM | Comments (0)

Cycling '74 Relaunches Site, Forum; Max/MSP Knowledge Thrives

Looking for new wisdom and expertise on tools like the insanely deep Max/MSP/Jitter? (If you're using Max, signs point to yes.) Cycling '74 relaunched their site (http://www.cycling74.com/) a couple of weeks ago, incorporating a variety of features that make this an indispensible resource for users of Max and other products. Since late last month, the new site has gotten rolling fast. Collective intelligence, meet Max.

Originally posted by Administrator from createdigitalmusic.com, ReBlogged by daniel perlin on Feb 11, 2006 at 01:04 AM

Originally from
ReBlogged by ann p on Feb 13, 2006 at 01:50 PM | Comments (4)

Songbird, the "open source iTunes killer," flies today

Xeni Jardin: Update: The Songbird site is overloaded right now, but here's a download mirror, and another. Some discussion on this digg thread.

- - - - - - - -

A team led by ex-Winamp-er Rob Lord today released a preview edition of Songbird, a desktop media player that offers an open source alternative to services like Apple's iTunes and the Windows Media Player. Instead of connecting to one locked store full of DRMmed goods, it can connect to any and all available music (and video) on the internet.

Code brains behind the project include people who helped build Winamp, Muse, Yahoo's "Y! Music Engine" media player, and developers from Mozilla Foundation. Initial release is for Windows only, with editions for other OSes to follow in the coming weeks.

Built on the same platform as Firefox, Songbird acts like a specialized web browser for music. It sees the online world through MP3-colored glasses -- it looks at an archive of public domain sound files or a music store's catalog, and displays available media for you.

I spoke with Rob Lord earlier today by phone about the preview release. Screenshots and interview after the jump. Click screenshots for full-size.

Read the Interview at boing boing

Originally from
ReBlogged by ann p on Feb 9, 2006 at 12:11 PM | Comments (6)

Video Bomb: social video-channel publisher and discovery tool

Cory Doctorow: Video Bomb is a new video- playlist- publishing tool from Participatory Culture Foundation, the same people who brought you the brilliant DTV Internet video client.

Video Bomb lets you grab Internet videos you like and publish them as a feed -- "bomb" them -- that your friends or fans can subscribe to, so all the online video you find ends up in their video player automatically, It lets you program and publish your own TV station made up of anything you find online and anything you make and publish.

Video Bomb is designed to make video-sharing social and sustainable. It uses Digg-like voting to bubble the best videos to the top of the list, and Delicious-like tagging to help you make sense of the pile.

Like all Participatory Culture Foundation projects, Video Bomb is simple, elegant and powerful. It has wonderful gracenotes like "publisher hookup" in the video-submission form -- that's where you embed links to t-shirt, donations, or merchandise offered by the video's original publisher, so that everyone who gets your feed will have the chance to reward the creators and sustain their work. Link

(Disclosure: I'm a proud member of the Participatory Culture Foundation's Board of Directors)

Originally from
ReBlogged by ann p on Feb 9, 2006 at 12:09 PM | Comments (0)

BMW cheats search-engines, Google removes it from search results

Cory Doctorow: BMW's German page has been expunged from Google's search-results, apparently in retaliation for BMW's use of sleazy "doorway pages" that display different content to search-engine crawlers in order to fool them into valuing those pages more highly. A Google employee has confirmed the "Google Death Penalty" for BMW on his blog.

This willingness to punish wrongdoing even when it comes from big companies is a marked contrast with the anti-virus companies that had to be arm-twisted into releasing updates to their products to catch and remove the spyware and rootkits that Sony music was caught distributing on millions of music CDs.

It appears that at least some of the JavaScript- redirecting pages have already been removed from bmw.de, which is very encouraging, but given the number of pages that were doing JavaScript redirects, I expect that Google's webspam team will need a reinclusion request with details on who created the doorway pages. We'll probably also need some assurances that such pages won’t reappear on the sites before the domains can be reincluded. I'm leaving comments turned off on this post; there are no doubt plenty of other search engine optimization areas to discuss this.
Link (via Digg)

ha, what did we say about cheating search engines? :D

Originally from
ReBlogged by ann p on Feb 6, 2006 at 11:31 AM | Comments (1)

Care for Some Wood?

Lothar of the Hill People sometimes needs to carry his multimedia with him as he clomps through the underbrush. How does he do it, you ask? With this weird wooden USB key. Why anyone else in their right mind would go for these wooden USB drives is beyond me, unless of course you’re dying to wear one around your neck with the accompanied piece of leather. Yikes.

The flash drive comes in “various hardwood,” in case you care.

Got Wood?

oh no, that was my idea...

Originally from
ReBlogged by ann p on Jan 26, 2006 at 07:51 PM | Comments (0)

Finnish President said "Yes" by SMS

In the home of Nokia, the world's largest cell phone maker, Tarja Halone - Finland's popular first female president - has been quick to catch onto trends by accepting a marriage proposal six years ago via text messaging rather than talking on the phone, for fear of personnel overhearing."

oh those cool finnish...

Originally from
ReBlogged by ann p on Jan 16, 2006 at 01:52 PM | Comments (4)

Sketchup Google Earth

With SketchUp’s new Google Earth plug-in., you can how have the ultimate virtual site model in an instant. Export your own 3D model directly to a KMZ file and your done.

via Informationlab

this one for Oriol

Via Future Feeder

Originally from
ReBlogged by ann p on Jan 16, 2006 at 11:54 AM | Comments (3)

First photos of the new Macbook pro!

84929030 2Ed2Ed1B31 TWe spent some time with the new Intel-based Macbook. Wow--it's super fast. As we take photos, we're automatically uploading them to Flickr via WiFi-Kodak wireless camera and the roaming EVDO Wifi network we're broadcasting -- so here they are, some of the first photos with hot system info action, too! Link.

not much to look at (since there's no design changes), but this post is for those who really want to see it..

Via MAKE: Blog

Originally from
ReBlogged by ann p on Jan 13, 2006 at 11:09 AM | Comments (2)

The Only OS X Tablet Never Sold.

itablet.jpgYesterday everyone doggy-piled on the iTab, an iBook hardware hack that was put to auction on eBay. Naturally, this limited edition series of 100 iTabs did not meet with eBay’s standards. Did this surprise anyone? Today there is a new auction, starting bid $1,500 (zero bidders so far). The folks behind the iTab, ThePlaceforitAll, have done some great software mods—but hardware? I’d sooner put money down on how quickly this auction will disappear.

That said, I do love the idea behind this imaginary machine.

The iTab is built by taking Apple’s excellent 12” iBook laptop, taking the screen off, applying a touchscreen, then flipping the screen around and fastening it on. The whole thing is finished off by putting the leftover screen backing over the top of the iTab, giving it the “rounded white edges.” The image above is a very close approximation of what iTab should look like when constructed. The iTab is not built yet.

Product Page


Originally from
ReBlogged by ann p on Jan 13, 2006 at 10:58 AM | Comments (3)

Passfaces, faces as passwords.

The IT security systems has become more and more important, as the computer has started to treat data that is really important for our lifes. But the data protection methods, mostly derived from the mutual identification between the machine and the user, often have been goverflow to the land of the centralized control, instead of really guaranteeing the expected access restrictions. Passfaces is a new method that substituted a sequence of faces to the passwords and the vain and hateful biometric techniques. Our good memory for faces is so able to tell the mind how to choose the appropriate set of faces during the authentication process. It is at least interesting to note that for once forefront security techniques don't come from the research on more of invasive methods of scanning the body, but from exploiting the mind's attitude. In this way security is combined with anonymity, and is freed from the possible user's booking. And at the same time it freed also the authentication from the mnemonic slavery and the physical identification. The use of this innate visual skill opens up a new scenario: security procedures that exploit the infallible computing power of our minds, giving us back the control on the virtual territories management.

Originally from Neural.it 07.12.05

Originally from
ReBlogged by silvia on Dec 20, 2005 at 11:32 AM | Comments (1)

Software decodes Mona Lisa's enigmatic smile

IT'S official: Leonardo da Vinci's Mona Lisa was 83 per cent happy, 9 per cent disgusted, 6 per cent fearful and 2 per cent angry.

Nicu Sebe at the University of Amsterdam in the Netherlands tested emotion-recognition software on the famous enigmatic smile. His algorithm, developed with researchers at the Beckman Institute at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, examines key facial features such as the curvature of the lips and crinkles around the eyes, then scores each face with respect to six basic emotions. Sebe drew on a database of young female faces to derive an average "neutral" expression, which the software used as a standard to compare the painting against.

Software capable of recognising human emotions just by looking at photographs or videos could lead to PCs that adjust their response depending on the user's mood, as well as smarter surveillance systems.

From issue 2530 of New Scientist magazine, 17 December 2005, page 25
Reblogged by Silvia M.

Originally from
ReBlogged by silvia on Dec 19, 2005 at 04:31 PM | Comments (4)

Yahoo Buys Del.icio.us

I'm a little worried about this.
Joshua Schachter, the founder of Del.icio.us, confirmed a posting on the New York-based start-up's site that the company had been acquired by Yahoo. A Yahoo representative confirmed that the agreement to buy Del.icio.us had closed on Friday.

Neither party disclosed financial terms.

"We are joining forces to build my vision of creating a way for people to remember things together," Schachter told Reuters in a phone interview. "It is a shared-memory site."

Del.icio.us provides a simple way for hundreds of thousands of Web users to share and categorize their favorite Web page bookmarks as Web pages.

Originally posted by Chris from Cynical-C Blog, ReBlogged by emma on Dec 11, 2005 at 04:03 PM

you might notice that here, on this blog, we use both Flickr and Del.icio.us. I don\'t know if it\'s because Yahoo! has a really good team of people, but it\'s still a bit strange regardless...

Originally from
ReBlogged by ann p on Dec 12, 2005 at 04:58 PM | Comments (3)

Slashdot | The Letter That Won US Internet Control

via slashdot: K-boy writes "Pushing my own scoop, but I think it's a valuable piece of Net history, I have come into possession of the vital letter sent by Condoleezza Rice to the EU over Internet governance. And posted it on the Web.

Originally posted by del.icio.us/tag/unmediated::exiledsurfer from unmediated, ReBlogged by emma on Dec 5, 2005 at 12:50 PM

Via Eyebeam reBlog

Originally from
ReBlogged by ann p on Dec 6, 2005 at 12:23 PM | Comments (3)

SNL Parodies iPod's Planned Obsolescence


Saturday Night Live's Weekend Update anchors Tina Fey and Amy Poehler host special guest *Steve Jobs* who unveils a whole new line of iPods. The parody of Apple's planned obsolescence program for the iPod includes the debut of the iNvisa media player. video link.

this is so funny, you have to watch it.

Originally from
ReBlogged by ann p on Nov 30, 2005 at 06:26 PM | Comments (0)

Google Video!


Now you can google videos to all your heart's content. How do people get any work done these days?


Originally from
ReBlogged by ann p on Nov 30, 2005 at 10:33 AM | Comments (0)


starsight.jpgStarSight is one of those ideas that makes one wonder why it wasn't developed years ago. StarSight combines a street light -- something which can bring down crime rates dramatically -- with solar panel, wireless network (WiFi or WiMax), remote management, local network access, and (optionally) hookups for charging small devices. The designers, UK-based Kolam Partnership and Singapore's Nex-G, describe StarSight as being a key element of a "virtual utility," a low-cost, low-maintenance provider of intangible but very useful services such as public lighting and wireless networks. All of this is very cool, and makes a great deal of sense, but there's one last element that makes it truly worldchanging:

Its first deployment is in Cameroon, and the designers have explicitly intended the system for use in the rapidly-urbanizing developing world. Mike Butcher at the Financial Times has the details.

A technology to roll out green energy street lighting along with telecommunications and power could well be the great leap forward for which Africa is looking.
Yannick Gaillac, founding partner of the Kolam Partnership, is enthusiastic: “This project will definitely change lives for the poorest people in the world and that’s what I wanted to do. We didn’t invent these basic technologies, but we are gathering them together in one solution.”

Morocco, China and India are said to be next on StarSight's list for potential sites for the system. And the set-up is not limited to lighting and communication -- other potential uses include disaster warning systems, pollution monitors, and other location-aware network services.

(Thanks for the tip, Mike!)

(Posted by Jamais Cascio in Leapfrog Nations - Emerging Technology in the New Developing World at 11:50 AM)

nice, but it looks so bulky... and i\'m gonna bet it\'d never pass for fashion in pretty Treviso

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ReBlogged by ann p on Nov 28, 2005 at 06:07 PM | Comments (3)

For all the native italian Mac OS X geeks.

Here's a series of impressive tutorials on learning how to program for Mac OS X in Obj-C - WRITTEN IN ITALIAN.


And for the non-geeks.. don't let it scare you, let it bore you.

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ReBlogged by mark argo on Nov 22, 2005 at 05:51 PM | Comments (3)

Flying Robots to Police From Above

micro air vehicle.jpg
We’ve all seen them in the movies and thought “How Cool”, followed closely by “Honey, where’s my shotgun?” But, according to Drudge, Honeywell in the US is well along the road to building spy drones that will fly through our cities. It’s no looker, but equipped with cameras and various other sensors (iPod locators for enterprising thieves?), the Micro Air Vehicle has already performed more than 200 successful test flights, including one through a fake, urban setting. Battery powered, it can stay aloft for nearly one hour and hit top speeds of around 35 miles per hour. The military are already testing them and, sporting in-built GPS, they can be used for reconnaissance and target acquisition. Civvies Street could see them within 3-4 years where they will used mostly for target practice and looking through naked chicks’ windows.


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ReBlogged by ann p on Nov 17, 2005 at 12:30 PM | Comments (3)

Technology's Role in the French Riots

The recent rioting in France appears to be getting a boost from mobile and Internet technology:

In its early days, the rioting appeared to spread spontaneously, but law enforcement officials said it was also being abetted by exhortations on the Internet. Worse, said Patrick Hamon, the national police spokesman, "what we notice is that the bands of youths are, little by little, getting more organized" and are sending attack messages by mobile phone texts.

Some sites on the Internet mourned the two teenagers; others issued insults to the police or warned that the uprisings would only give the anti-immigrant far right an opportunity.

The use of technology may be resulting in less-decentralized disturbances that are harder to control. Whether and how the French authorities will respond to the rioters' use of technology will be an interesting question. If the unrest is indeed more coordinated than most people realize, it would fit in neatly with theories pointed out in the conservative Captain's Quarters blog, which notes accounts of connections with radical Islamic groups sending trained agitatiors to Europe from the Middle East.

RELATED: The futuramb blog notes how the recent disturbances are in line with the forecasts of Peter Schwartz and other futurists of immigration straining not just France, but the entire EU. Unrest, under this scenario, would lead to a reactionary rise in ultranationalism across Europe, a closing of borders, and the ultimate breakdown of the EU.

ALSO RELATED: Blogger Thomas P.M. Barnett believes the long-term solution to unrest and disenfranchisment is to encourage immigrants to create political parties that would create social connectivity and help these groups develop a voice in the government. Read the comments in the earlier-cited Captain's Quarters post for some possible implications of this.

Source: International Herald Tribune (via the New York Times), Smart Mobs

Via FutureWire - futurism and emerging technology

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ReBlogged by ann p on Nov 7, 2005 at 05:30 PM | Comments (37)

New super-simple DIY synth plans

From Ray Wilson, inventor of the Soundlab Mini Synth comes the Wacky Electronic Noise Maker Thingy. It's a much simpler circuit, which produces surprisingly cool pulsing, bleeping type noises. You can hear sound clips here. It's made with a handful of components, a few pots and switches and a 9v battery. There's a very clear schematic, a PCB design and a stripboard layout. If anyone is making a PCB for this kit, could you make me one, too? (thanks, CleanROOM)

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ReBlogged by daniel h. on Nov 4, 2005 at 06:02 PM | Comments (0)

flight pattern map

flightpatterns.jpgseveral beautiful geographical maps depicting flight patterns over the US over time, derived from air traffic data that was parsed & plotted using the processing programming environment. [aaronkoblin.com & aaronkoblin.com(movie)|via futurefeeder.com]

Who would have thunk that people traveling across the world could creat such beautiful images (and of course someone had the insight to use this information in an intelligent way!)

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ReBlogged by daniel h. on Nov 4, 2005 at 05:50 PM | Comments (0)

itp ambient display

itpambient.jpgseveral ambient visualization devices that represent time-varying data in an aesthetic way in the periphery of human attention. designed & prototyped by students, these ambient displays include
Visual Heart Music: an art installation which receives the viewer's heart rate & parses it to generate generative images & sounds,
Presence Frames: networked picture frames that indicate the presence of the person in the picture using motion detection, &
Slumberlights, glowing picture blocks for ambient, distant communication via a luminescent cube containing a photograph of a distant friend or family member that glows when that person is asleep.
see also collaborative physical user interface for a similar large collection of ambient information visualization devices. [nyu.edu|via mocoloco.com]

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ReBlogged by daniel h. on Nov 4, 2005 at 05:48 PM | Comments (0)

Oakley high-voltage LED bag

Rosanna Kilfedder's cool solar-powered Sun Trap handbag isn't commercially available yet, but Oakley's High Voltage tote is, and it has two LEDs that light up the roomy cotton/nylon insides when you open it. I realized how badly I needed this tonight when I managed to lose a gigantic mobile phone power adaptor in my tightly packed handbag. Of course, this may largely be due to my pack rat tendencies and inability to carry less than about 30 lbs. of gadgetry, papers, books, gum and candy, makeup, more snacks,...well you get the point, but I like to blame it on the darkness. The High Voltage tote is good for organization too, with multiple inside and outside pockets. I clearly need one right away. Compression straps will hold in the contents of the bag in case you don't stuff it to the gills the way I do.

The lights aren't so bright you'll be able to read by them, but should be helpful in locating a power cable jammed into an overstuffed internal pocket. Not sure what type of battery life you can expect, but I can't imagine that it wouldn't be easily replaceable.

The Oakley High Voltage bag is $125 and comes in black, white, or olive green. The smaller version, the Low Voltage is $100 and comes in berry, white or black. Both are available from Oakley or Zappos.

Its strange that noone came up with this one sooner...

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ReBlogged by daniel h. on Nov 4, 2005 at 05:42 PM | Comments (4)

Geek jewelry


There are a lot of designers who use computer and electronic parts to create their jewelry, but often times you end up looking like you're wearing a computer chip around your neck (and who wants to announce their geekdom more than they need to? Well, some people I guess). In general, chip jewelry reminds me of my grad school days - the height of my techie-geek phase. We'd sit around with chips, capacitors, resistors and LEDs, breathing in way too many soldering fumes, and often we'd spontaneously make little necklaces and earrings out of these parts. I understand the appeal - electronic components are surprisingly beautiful.

Liz McLean creates a collection called Zelle that certainly has a fair share of computer chip-as-pendant designs, but she does create pieces that are inspired from more traditional designs. Even though I don't think I'd wear the blue capacitor necklace myself, I do like the spark of color and how they resemble semi-precious stones. I don't think I'd mind, however, having the Hex Bracelet around my wrist. They're made of hex standoffs woven together and the end result is similar to a metal watchband. A big plus is that she'll make it to size, which is great because most times, bracelets are way too big on my bony wrists.

Check out her other pieces at Fractal Spin

These pieces speak directly to the GEEEEEK in me. (And theres a lot of geek in here)

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ReBlogged by daniel h. on Nov 4, 2005 at 05:41 PM | Comments (2)

Aegis Hyposurface

Aegis Hyposurface is an elastic architectural surface made up of small metal plates that are controlled pneumatically and react in real time to electronic stimuli from the environment (movement, sound, light, etc). Driven by 896 pneumatic pistons, the dynamic 'terrains' are generated as real-time calculations.


The Aegis Hyposurface effectively links information systems with physical form to produce dynamically variable, tactile 'informatic' surfaces. Aegis is perhaps the world's first such dynamic screen.

Any digital input (microphone, keyboard, movement sensor) can trigger any physical output (a wave or pattern or word.)


Developed in 1999-2001 by Mark Goulthorpe at dECOi atelier.

one of the cooler 3d surface options out there... I would love to have seen been around to witness the chaos of constructuion

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ReBlogged by daniel h. on Nov 4, 2005 at 05:30 PM | Comments (3)

Make LED color changers...

Rgb1"It's nice to have a bit of colour in your house for style reasons, so here are some neat little PCB's that accommodate a mixture of red, green and blue LEDs giving you the option of controlling the colour they emit. They are designed to fit into standard MR16 downlighter frames for convenience of mounting. Since this page was put up the intensity of common LEDs has risen dramatically and the matching controller project now has extremely sophisticated software that really makes these lights shine." Thanks Rick! Link.

Heres a good excuse to let the electrical engineer in you come out to play a little... (No degree in engineering required for this project - simply an interest in making cool glowing stuff!)

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ReBlogged by daniel h. on Nov 3, 2005 at 06:40 PM | Comments (4)

HOW TO - Backup Your DVD Movies

Dvd-1Mark Pilgram of Greasemonkey hacks fame has a great how-to on backing up your DVDs on Mac OS X "Following up on the wildly popular guides on converting DVDs and other video files for your video iPod, I've put together a short video tutorial on how to use MacTheRipper and DVD2OneX to backup your DVDs on Mac OS X." [via] Link.

this should be useful

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ReBlogged by ann p on Oct 27, 2005 at 12:24 PM | Comments (0)

For your head(phones)

It's tough being here sometimes, you know, in the office, where everyone is talking, meeting, and you have your own work you need to concentrate on. The iTunes share lib gets real boring after a while, and who has time to fiddle with the playlist when you're on a deadline? I mean, really!

For those on a mac OS X, here's a brilliant little app:

NOISE: Drawn Distraction

It's the hottest sensation to sweep the nation: Pink Noise! Also known as a signal with even power distribution on a logarithmic frequency scale, pink noise masks background noise to help you concentrate. Now with source code and white noise, for those less colorful. Drown out annoying roommates and co-workers today!

go get it!

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ReBlogged by ann p on Oct 26, 2005 at 03:41 PM | Comments (2)

Everything You Need to Know: iPod Video

ipodvideolcd.jpgYeah, we have beat this iPod Video like a dead horse, but this will be the last post (most likely not) about it, I swear. Clint Ecker over at arstechnica has put together one of the best iPod Video reviews/analysis around. He covers pretty much everything, then when you think he is done, he tears the bitch apart and shows you everything from the inside. If you are lingering on the ropes whether to purchase an iPod Video, definitely give this a read, it will either seal or break the deal. He covers everything: the packaging, the physical size, the accessories, widescreen, a huge in-depth look at the video support, battery life, durability, etc. Now if only all tech writing was this good.

Video iPod [arstechnica]

This should be useful -- ann

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ReBlogged by ann p on Oct 24, 2005 at 01:32 PM | Comments (3)

Bluetooth vibrator works with SMS


The Toy is a vibrating bullet that connects to a mobile phone with Bluetooth.

The Toy is worn internally, linked to a mobile phone and controlled by sms text messages sent to the phone. Once read, the message is transported automatically to The Toy, which turns it into vibrations - with a huge range of movements, depending on what you have written. Just say what you feel, The Toy will do the rest.

[via wired]

this deserves attention from Fabrica Interactive (and others too, yes)... -- ann

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ReBlogged by ann p on Oct 24, 2005 at 12:06 PM | Comments (4)

Kodak announces 39 megapixel CCD

kodak ccdKodak may have thrown in the towel in the DSLR market, but that doesn’t mean the company has completely abandoned the high-end photo market. In fact, according to the company, it’s gone to the absolute highest end, with two new CCDs that are among the largest available commercially. The KAF-31600 boasts 31.6 megapixels, and the KAF-39000 has 39 megapixels. The CCDs are targeted at pros, and will be incorporated into digital backs for medium-format cameras. One early customer is Phase One A/S, which plans to use the CCDs in its previously announced P30 and P45 backs. How much will 39 megapixels run you? No pricing is out yet, but Phase One’s current top model, the 22 megapixel P25, goes for about $30,000. That puts it at over $1,300 per megapixel, so don’t be surprised to see the P45 going for as much as $50K.

mm, this is quite techy of me to post... but seriously, 39 megapixel???? HOLY SHIT!!!!!

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ReBlogged by ann p on Oct 24, 2005 at 11:55 AM | Comments (2)


Tests in Europe of a "High Altitude Platform" broadband router have successfully demonstrated the ability to provide a high-speed wireless connection over a wide area from the air. The Europe-wide Capanina project, led by the University of York, operated a wireless-Internet-equipped balloon at an altitude of 24 kilometers over Sweden this week, according to the BBC. The goal of the project is to provide wireless coverage of a region 60 kilometers square at a speed of 120 Mbps; the project team say that they should be able to do this in less than five years.

Such a system would be of particular utility in areas where terrain makes pulling wires or even installing enough wireless towers too costly. Because the cost of a HAP wireless system would be significantly lower than a satellite link, this model should be of great use in the developing world. At the same time, the ability to launch a balloon-based router relatively quickly -- potentially even releasing it from an airplane -- would be valuable during post-disaster response operations.

(Thanks for the pointer, Lorenzo!)

(Posted by Jamais Cascio in QuickChanges at 02:49 PM)

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ReBlogged by ann p on Oct 21, 2005 at 02:36 PM | Comments (0)

Camera phone competition launched

A Nokia photography competition has been launched to find the best images taken with a camera phone.

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ReBlogged by blog.Fabrica on Oct 5, 2005 at 03:05 PM | Comments (210)