TV makers have a vested interest in promoting the 3D revolution, but they're not the only ones. Companies like Cisco are just as stoked.
"There is no question in my mind that 3D is the next thing to happen in video," said John Chambers, CEO of Cisco. "It's the next logical evolution of the technology."
According to Chambers, video is becoming the next must-have app of all IP networks, a trend which feeds right into Cisco's business. Even cooler, Chambers says we're not far off from when telepresence video conferencing will go 3D as well.
"3D will make things more lifelike," Chamber said. "But I think in 10 years we'll be seeing holograms used. Not only can this be used to enhance business communications, but imagine the implications for certain vertical businesses like medicine."
Let's hope in 10 years time companies are able to find a better way to implement holograms than CNN's lame display in late 2008.
Don't fret if your newborn just popped out of the womb sporting horns and a tail, that just means your router is firing on all cylinders. Or, as a British scientist and former naval microwave specialist warns, it would serve as proof that Wi-Fi leads to birth defects.
"When I realized these same frequencies and powers (as weapons during the Cold War) were being used as Wi-Fi in schools, I decided to come out of retirement and travel around the world free of charge and explain exactly what the problem is going to be in the future," Barrie Trower told Postmedia News in an Interview.
"Children are not small adults, they are underdeveloped adults, so there are different symptoms. What you are doing in schools is transmitting at low levels."
Even though Wi-Fi is generally considered safe, Trower contends that no scientific studies exist that deem prolonged exposure won't cause any harm.
"If you damage the DNA, there could be a genetic disorder from the child that is born from that lady when they grow up," Trower warns.
While Trower might be freaking out over Wi-Fi, Health Canada says everything is gravy.
"Based on scientific evidence, Health Canada has determined that exposure to low-level radio-frequency energy, such as that from Wi-Fi systems, is not dangerous to the public," the agency said in a statement.
Officially, it's called the Assault Intervention Device, and what it does is fire off a focused, non-lethal beam of energy at the target, which in this case will be inmates trading blows with each other. But even though it's not a deadly laser, prison officers describe the sensation as "excruciatingly painful."
"We hope that this type of technology will either cause an inmate to stop an assault or lessen the severity of an assault by them being distracted by the pain as a result of the beam," said Bob Osborne, Commander of the Sheriff's Department of Technology Exploration Program. "I equate it to opening an oven door and feeling that blast of hot air, except instead of being all over me, it's more focused.
"And you begin to feel this warming feeling, and then you go 'Yow, I need to get out of the way,'" Osborne added.
Plans are in place to mount the device on the ceiling at Pitches Detention Center at Los Angeles County Jail, home to some 65 convicts.
"This device will allow us to quickly intervene without having to enter the area and without incapacitating or injuring either combatant," said Sheriff Lee Baca in a statement.
Texas Instruments (TI) this week announced a new dual-channel, single-lane SATA redriver and signal conditioner that they claim features the lowest active power and lowest automatic low-power (ALP) mode of any 6Gbps redriver/equalizer on the planet.
Sounds incredibly geeky and all, but the real question here is, why should you care? There are a couple of reasons, the first being longer battery life in portable electronics. According to TI, its new redriver and signal conditioner runs 50 percent more efficient than the nearest competitor. We're talking about a SATA interface here so we're not expecting miracles, but hey, every little bit matters when you're dealing with mobile devices, like notebooks and netbooks.
TI also says its new tech supports longer etch runs, easier board designs, and the use of longer external cables when hooking up a drive via eSATA or using an HDD dock.
How it all works gets pretty technical, and quite frankly, a little boring. But if that's your sort of thing, get the full scoop here (PDF).
Kia motors is taking the idea of plug-and-play to a whole new level with the unveiling of its all-new electric concept car simply called "POP."
The POP concept looks like a toy but is all serious business when it comes to hugging trees. Kia claims the POP puts out zero emissions while in use, and can seat up to three people in a frame that measures a scant three meters (just under 10 feet) long.
That's all the details Kia is willing to share, at least for the time being. On September 30th, Kia will show off its concept car at the Paris Motor Show, in which "further information will be released." In the meantime, have a glance at the handful of rendered pics.
The world's baddest (and we mean that in a good way) vending machine just went up in central Tokyo this week at the East Japan Railway Co.'s Shinagawa Station. What separates this vending machine from all others -- and makes it newsworthy for a tech site -- is the ginormous 47-inch touchscreen being wielded.
That's right, this thing packs a touchscreen larger than some home TV displays, but that isn't all it has going for it. Still images and video are fed to the machine by way of WiMAX wireless broadband, which can be used to show promotional content depending on the season or time of the day. In the heat of summer, for example, you might see a bottle of ice cold water displayed across on the screen. In the future, commercials are likely to be played, too.
The smart vending machine, which was co-developed by JR East Water Business Co., Omron Corp, and Fuji Electric Retail Systems Co., uses a built-in face recognition system to figure out the customer's sex and age, and then uses that info to display items that might be of interest. And in a move that's sure to have privacy advocates up in arms, the machine also retains customer data, like previously purchased items, which will then be used for marketing purposes, Nikkei.com says.
According to a report in The Wall Street Journal, university dorms are getting rid of landlines as cell phones become increasingly popular. Doing so has the potential to save schools boat loads of money.
Take the University of Virginia, which has removed almost 4,000 telephones from its residence halls so far this summer. The result? The school will pocket an additional $500,000 a year by not having to fork over funds for telephone service.
"Students may still request a landline telephone, but I don't anticipate that a lot will," said chief housing officer Mark Doherty in a statement. "Over the past several years, landline use has decreased a lot."
Virginia is far from alone in ditching landlines. The University of South Dakota did the same thing over the winter, and according to a university spokesman, the saved funds benefit the students the most "primarily through re-allocating those resources into other student programs."
Despite arguments over the technicalities of Moore's Law, the bottom line is we've seen fairly consistent performance increases throughout the years in the microprocessor industry. The problem with this, says Bill Gates, is that the same expectations can't be applied to other tech sectors.
"We've all been spoiled and deeply confused by the IT model," Gates said in response to a question from the audience during last week's Techonomy conference. "Exponential improvement -- that is rare."
That isn't to say that certain tech segments never see that kind of growth, and according to Gates, you can "see it in hard disk storage, fiber capacity, gene-sequencing rates, biological databases, [and] improvements in modeling software," to name a few. But in other areas, like battery development, exponential growth just isn't a reality.
"They [batteries] haven't improved hardly at all," Gates said. "There are deep physical limits. I am funding five battery start-ups and there are probably 50 out there. [But] that is a very tough problem. It may not be solvable in any sort of economic way."
How awesome would it be if your hard drive securely erased sensitive data whenever it's powered down, or when it was removed from your system? Not only would that be rad, but it's now a reality thanks to Toshiba's new Wipe technology for its line of Self-Encrypting Drive (SED) models.
There are a number of scenarios where something like this could prove useful, including obvious ones like your notebook becoming lost or stolen. But that isn't all Wipe is good for.
"Many organizations are now realizing the critical importance of maintaining the security of document image data stored within copier and printer systems," Toshiba explains. "Wipe is a technology that can automatically invalidate an HDD security key when its power supply is turned off, instantly making all data in the drive indecipherable. Toshiba's innovative new Wipe Technology adds advanced storage security features to enable system makers to transparently and automatically secure private data."
On the pedestrian side, Toshiba's Wipe technology can also come in handy when returning a leased system, disposing of a system and/or hard drive, or re-purposing a drive, Toshiba says.
It's fourth and inches on the goal line and your team is down by 6 with just seconds to go. Naturally, they're going to go for the touchdown. The running back gets the ball and dives over the linesmen where he's met by a pile of bodies keeping him out of the endzone. However, all he needs to do is reach the football out and break the plane. Did he make it?
It's not always easy to tell, and even instant replay is at the mercy of camera angles and how many big bodies are in the way. Getting the wrong call in this situation could determine whether a team makes the playoffs or goes home early, and this is just one of many scenarios that referees can get wrong in the course of a game. To help eliminate what often boils down to guesswork, the NFL is reportedly in talks with German manufacturer Cairos Technologies to implant microchips into pigskins.
"Yes, we are talking. There is a demand in American Football," Cairos sales director Mario Hanus told Reuters in a recent interview.
Predictably, the NFL was pretty tight-lipped about the possibility of employing chip-in-ball technology, but a league spokesman did say they are looking at ways of expanding their use of technology on the field.
"We are always exploring ways in which we can be innovative with technology to improve our game and our fans enjoyment of the game," spokesman Michael Signora said.
If implemented, the chip would likely only be used to help determine contentious first-down and touchdown decisions, and could even be reserved for red flag challenges, of which each team gets two opportunities per game to challenge a call on the field with a video replay, with an additional challenge awarded if the first two are won.
So what do you think, football fans, would you like to see this technology come to fruition, or do NFL games play out just fine the way they are?