The iPhone as a jailhouse… I have always seen it as one.
(via Go Outside Magazine - Jailhouses)

Remember Steve Jobs today by revisiting the insanely great history of Apple.

IBM Breaks Efficiency Mark with Novel Solar Material - Technology Review
An IBM-led research teams says that a combination of copper, zinc, tin, and selenium (CZTS) could meet current thin-film efficiencies with more abundant materials.
IBM says it has made technical progress on a solar technology that researchers hope will yield efficient thin-film solar cells made from abundant materials.
IBM photovoltaic scientists Teodor Todorov and David Mitzi on Friday detailed the findings of a paper that showed the highest efficiency to date for solar cells made from a combination of copper, zinc, tin, and selenium (CZTS). Published in Advanced Energy Materials, the technical paper described a CZTS solar cell able to convert 11.1 percent of solar energy to electricity.
 That level of efficiency is a significant jump from the 10.1 percent efficiency Mitzi and colleagues showed last year. (See, Efficiency Solar Cells from Cheaper Materials). The paper also argues that CZTS solar cells could achieve efficiencies high enough to make them commercially viable.

The Accidental History of the @ Symbol

The symbol’s modern obscurity ended in 1971, when a computer scientist named Ray Tomlinson was facing a vexing problem: how to connect people who programmed computers with one another. At that time, each programmer was typically connected to a particular mainframe machine via a phone connection and a teletype machine—basically a keyboard with a built-in-printer. But these computers weren’t connected to one another, a shortcoming the U.S. government sought to overcome when it hired BBN Technologies, the Cambridge, Massachusetts, company Tomlinson worked for, to help develop a network called Arpanet, forerunner of the Internet.
Tomlinson’s challenge was how to address a message created by one person and sent through Arpanet to someone at a different computer. The address needed an individual’s name, he reasoned, as well as the name of the computer, which might service many users. And the symbol separating those two address elements could not already be widely used in programs and operating systems, lest computers be confused.
Tomlinson’s eyes fell on the @, poised above “P” on his Model 33 teletype. - Continue reading at

Illustration: Erik Marinovich
Ed note: Here is the history of the exclamation point!

Japan planning ‘driverless driving’ for early 2020s.
Japan’s Transport Ministry is about to start a project to create an autopilot system which would take over for cars on expressways.

The ministry envisages an autonomous vehicle system in which, after leaving your home, you enter an interchange of a nearby expressway while manually operating your car.
When pulling into the expressway’s lane exclusively for the autopilot system, you change your driving mode to “automatic driving” and input your destination onto the system. You would take your hands and feet off the steering wheel, gas pedal and brake.
You would return to driving on your own only after reaching an intersection near your destination. Until then, you would leave all driving tasks to the self-steering system, comfortably enjoying whatever activity you like.

The system is hoped to alleviate congestion by keeping vehicles going at a constant speed, while eliminating accidents caused by vehicles veering out of lanes.
A study panel will being initial discussions about the project this month, with an aim to have the system operational in around 10 years.


It’s now accepted-going-on-cliché to say things like ‘software is eating the world’, which is an aggressive way of assuming that every company now has to be at least a bit of a technology company, and those that want to grow rapidly even more so. Many new companies targeting industries as diverse as eyeglasses and baby food are, at the outset, leveraging technology for everything they do: supply chain management, marketing, recruiting, internal communication, product development, and so on. This makes these businesses look like technology companies, if you squint. But, of course, they aren’t. They’re eyeglasses and baby food companies.

…‘Tech company’ and ‘tech startup’ are over-applied labels that have outlived their usefulness. Calling practically all growing contemporary businesses ‘technology companies’ is about as useful as calling the enterprises of the industrial era ‘factory companies’; it accurately describes an aspect of what they are (or were), but it doesn’t really capture the totality of their operation. It certainly doesn’t tell you anything substantive about how they’ll behave in the market over the long term, which is probably the most useful reason to label a business at all.

(Alex Payne via GigaOm)


If you’re a fan of Tumblr’s recently updated Android app, consider the wisdom of Tumblr’s own Android expert Chris Haseman. He recently released his second book, Creating Android Applications: Develop and Design. Available for Kindle download and paperback purchase via Amazon, Chris shows you how to use the powerful set of Android tools to begin creating the next generation of Android applications.
“I wrote the book because learning Android is hard in a few ways,” he says. “Doing a bunch of searches on how to write an Android application gives you information without knowledge.”
Creating Android Applications provides a complete introduction to developing for Google’s mobile OS, offering tons of insights and hard-earned advice. After a tour of how to install and configure the Android SDK and Eclipse IDE, you jump right in to build your first Android project.
“Android has several traps for beginners all of which I’ve fallen into. The book, in a way, is my best attempt to help new people avoid them,” Chris says. “Plus, I’ve always wanted to dedicate a book to my wife, and this seemed like the shortest path to get there.”

Amazing: You Can Control Robots With Your Mind
Have you ever imagined what it would be like to control objects with your mind? Well, now it’s possible, this amazing capability has been developed with the aid of Brain–computer interfaces, or as some like to call them, mind machines.Practically, you can control objects as far as 100 kilometers away, and what’s even more amazing is that scientist have developed a new brain – muscle implant which allows paralyzed limbs to move. Sounds pretty incredible, right? Well let’s have a look and see these interesting inventions which may soon cure paralysis.By now you’ve probably heard about about some really innovating pieces of technologies, which are revolutionizing the research field of paralyzed patients. Scientists have invented virtual keyboards controlled simply by thought, or wheelchairs which are controlled by the user’s brain, and even neuro-prosthetic limbs… but all of these, as amazing as they may e have a major downside: they are all tiresome for the brain and do not allow it to multitask.

Made up word: Kissenger – The Long-Distance Kiss Messenger – as it’s obvious, consists of two words » kiss (n.) + messenger (n.) via
Reebok’s ZigTech technology.