March 29, 2004

Art meets Technology: again

Art projects

Another creative venture that explores how technology can be designed into a fine piece of art - and an interactive one at that. Danial Rozin has created a series of pieces, two of which I find really intriguing - Shiny Balls Mirror and Wooden Mirror.

Both of these projects utilize a video camera which images anything in front of the "mirror" and then via computation reduces the size to an appropriate number of pixels and grayscale values. This data is then represented in a unique the case of the Wooden Mirror via a grid of actuated wooden tiles that reflect light at various intensities thereby replicating the image in front of it. (hence the mirror) With the Shiny Balls Mirror a grid of chrome balls are slid in and out of tubes to create a similar, but very unique effect.

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March 19, 2004

Photoshop Adventures


Someone has a crazy mind and they've put it to use in Photoshop. Animals crossed with animals. Animals crossed with people. Animals crossed with inanimate objects. Fun.

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March 13, 2004

Brief History of Marijuana

Why is Marijuana Illegal?

Nicely written history of marijuana and prohibition in the United States. Everyone should read this article to understand the reasons that marijuana became illegal and how those reasons are outright lies.

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March 10, 2004

Berkeley Robotics Lab

UC Berkeley Human Engineering Laboratory

Lots of great robotics going on here....robots that help the human body, unique methods of locomotion, novel power devices, etc.

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March 08, 2004

World of Physics

Eric Weisstein's World of Physics

Nice physics reference know that one formula is out there, but you just can't remember it. No longer.

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March 07, 2004

Life Analogy: Golf Balls and Beer

A professor stood before his philosophy class and had some items in front of him. When the class began, wordlessly, he picked up a very large and empty mayonnaise jar and proceeded to fill it with golf balls.

He then asked the students if the jar was full. They agreed that it was.

So the professor then picked up a box of pebbles and poured them into the jar. He shook the jar lightly. The pebbles rolled into the open areas between the golf balls. He then asked the students again if the jar was full. They agreed it was.

The professor next picked up a box of sand and poured it into the jar. Of course, the sand filled up everything else. He asked once more if the jar was full. The students responded with a unanimous "yes."

The professor then produced two cans of beer from under the table and poured the entire contents into the jar, effectively filling the empty space between the sand. The students laughed.

"Now," said the professor, as the laughter subsided, "I want you to recognize that this jar represents your life. The golf balls are the important things - your family, your children, your health, your friends, and your passions, things that if everything else was lost andonly they remained, your life would still be full."

"The pebbles are the other things that matter like your job, your house, your car. The sand is everything else - the small stuff. "If you put the sand into the jar first," he continued, "there is no room for the pebbles or the golf balls. The same goes for life. If you spend all your time and energy on the small stuff, you will never have room for the things that are important to you.

"Pay attention to the things that are critical to your happiness. Take time to get medical checkups. Take your partner or friend out to dinner. There will always be time to clean the house. Take care of the golf balls first, the things that really matter. Set your priorities. The rest is just sand."

One of the students raised her hand and inquired what the beer represented. The professor smiled. "I'm glad you asked," he said. "It just goes to show you that no matter how full your life may seem, there's always room for a couple of beers."

Posted by answerguru at 01:13 PM | Comments (0)

March 04, 2004

Bubble Fusion


Can nuclear fusion happen with the aid of some ultrasonic bubbles? RPI, Oak Ridge National Labs, and the Russian Academy of Science think they've already concluded its presence in their experiments.

Wil it hold up to the test of peer review or will it go the way of cold fusion? Stay tuned....

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March 03, 2004

MPAA Will Rule Your TV

Losing Control of Your TV

Simson Garfinkel of MIT Technology Review discusses how the Motion Picture Association of America will control your TV as of July, 2005. By requiring that every new TV or PC TV tuner card sold after that date abide by their "broadcast flag".....shutting down all high quality digital outputs and sound from your system. You can watch it, but you can't record it unless it's on analog tape or low-res DVD format.

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Micro Piezo Gyros

DPRG: Low Cost Gyro-Accelerometer Combo Sensor

While the Quad-Copter project is always in the back of my mind, I ran across an article detailing how a guy from DPRG built his own gyro / accelerometer board to interface directly with a microcontroller. Nice work....except I would need to expand it to cover 3 axes.

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March 02, 2004

Broadband from your Electric Outlet

Cinergy plugs in as Web provider

Cinergy, the electric company for an area of Ohio, is the first to rollout Internet access over your existing household electric system. By just plugging your adapter into the nearest wall outlet, upload and download speeds of 1 megabit per second can be attained. Plus, it's only $29.99 per month!

I'm just hoping this could force the DSL and cable monopolies of the world to drop their prices as well.

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March 01, 2004

Carl Sagan Insight

"In science it often happens that scientists say, 'You know that's a really good argument; my position is mistaken,' and then they would actually change their minds and you never hear that old view from them again. They really do it. It doesn't happen as often as it should, because scientists are human and change is sometimes painful. But it happens every day. I cannot recall the last time something like that happened in politics or religion."

-Carl Sagan, astronomer and writer (1934-1996)

Posted by answerguru at 09:23 AM | Comments (0)

Micro Helicopter


Pixelito is a 6.9 GRAM micro helicopter, hand built by this guy in Europe. Very nice work.

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