Monday, March 03, 2014

More quick links

More of what caught my attention recently:
  • Cool new tech, especially for mobile, detecting gesture movements from the changes they make to ambient wireless signals, uses a fraction of the power of other techniques ([1] [2] [3])

  • Also for mobile: "The big trick here is ... two [camera] lenses with two different focal lengths. One lens is wide-angle, while the other is at 3x zoom ... magnify more distant subjects ... improved low-light performance ... noise is reduced ... just as we would if we had one big imaging sensor instead of two little ones ... [and] depth analysis allows ... [auto] blurring out of backgrounds in portrait shots, quicker autofocus, and augmented reality." ([1])

  • "These are not the first artificial muscles to have been created, but they are among the first that are inexpensive and store large amounts of energy" ([1])

  • "Tesla is a glimpse into a future where cars and computers coexist in seamless harmony" ([1])

  • "Fields from anthropology to zoology are becoming information fields. Those who can bend the power of the computer to their will – computational thinking but computer science in greater depth – will be positioned for greater success than those who can’t." ([1] [2])

  • The CEOs of Amazon, Facebook, Google, Microsoft, Twitter, Netflix, and Yahoo have CS degrees

  • Details on fixing What's so impressive is how much they changed the culture in such a short time, from a hierarchical structure where no one would take any responsibility to an egalitarian one where everyone was focused on solving problems. ([1])

  • Clever idea, advertise to find experts on the Web and then get them to answer questions for free by enticing them into playing a little quiz game ([1] [2])

  • "A key to Google’s epic success was the discipline the company maintained around its hiring ... During his first seven years, the executive team met every week to review every single hiring candidate." ([1] [2])

  • "Peter Norvig, Google's research director, said recently that the company employs 'less than 50% but certainly more than 5%' of the world's leading experts on machine learning" ([1])

  • Yahoo is trying to rebuild its research group, which was destroyed by its previous CEO ([1] [2] [3] [4] [5] [6])

  • Software increasingly needs to be aware of its power consumption, the cost of power, and the availability of power, and be able to reduce its power consumption when necessary ([1] [2])

  • "Viewers with a buffer-free experience watch 226% more and viewers receiving better picture quality watch 25% longer" ([1])

  • Gaming the most popular lists in the app stores: "Total estimated cost to reach the top ten list: $96,000" ([1] [2])

  • "The Rapiscan 522 B x-ray system used to scan carry-on baggage in airports worldwide ... runs on the outdated Windows 98 operating system, stores user credentials in plain text, and includes a feature called Threat Image Projection used to train screeners by injecting .bmp images of contraband ... [that] could allow a bad guy to project phony images on the X-ray display." ([1])

  • "It would appear that a surprising number of people use webcam conversations to show intimate parts of their body to the other person." ([1])

  • "Ohhh there's not another cable company, is there? Oh that's right we're the only one in town." ([1])

  • It "sounds like it's straight out of a sci-fi horror flick: they thawed some 30,000-year-old permafrost and allowed any viruses present to infect some cells" ([1])

  • Very funny if you (or your kids) are a fan of Portal, educational too, and done by NASA ([1])

  • NPR's "Wait Wait" did a segment on Amazon's "Customers who bought this", very funny ([1])

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