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Posts tagged Technology

4 Notes

GoPro, circa 1960
We have it so easy today. Back in the day, you just tied your cameraman right to the car -

F1 driver Jackie Stewart wore this stills-only proto-GoPro at the Monaco Grand Prix in 1966 (though not during the actual race) -

Stewart is also the chap in the photo at the head of this post. For some reason neither of his contraptions are recognised by Wikipedia as being the first documented helmet cam, which is instead attributed to a motorcycle race in 1986 -

Here’s another early use of a helmet cam, this time from the world of skydiving, circa 1961 -

GoPro, circa 1960

We have it so easy today. Back in the day, you just tied your cameraman right to the car -

F1 driver Jackie Stewart wore this stills-only proto-GoPro at the Monaco Grand Prix in 1966 (though not during the actual race) -

Stewart is also the chap in the photo at the head of this post. For some reason neither of his contraptions are recognised by Wikipedia as being the first documented helmet cam, which is instead attributed to a motorcycle race in 1986 -

Here’s another early use of a helmet cam, this time from the world of skydiving, circa 1961 -

Notes

The reality show
Schizophrenics used to see demons and spirits. Now they talk about actors and hidden cameras – and make a lot of sense.
How technology and modern entertainment has paralleled paranoia.
One to read.

The reality show

Schizophrenics used to see demons and spirits. Now they talk about actors and hidden cameras – and make a lot of sense.

How technology and modern entertainment has paralleled paranoia.

One to read.

9 Notes

Computer becomes first to pass Turing Test in artificial intelligence milestone
Eugene Goostman, a computer program pretending to be a young Ukrainian boy, successfully duped enough humans to pass the iconic test.
The Turing Test - which requires that computers are indistinguishable from humans - is considered a landmark in the development of artificial intelligence, but academics have warned that the technology could be used for cybercrime.
Computing pioneer Alan Turing said that a computer could be understood to be thinking if it passed the test, which requires that a computer dupes 30 per cent of human interrogators in five-minute text conversations.
Full story on The Independent.

Computer becomes first to pass Turing Test in artificial intelligence milestone

Eugene Goostman, a computer program pretending to be a young Ukrainian boy, successfully duped enough humans to pass the iconic test.

The Turing Test - which requires that computers are indistinguishable from humans - is considered a landmark in the development of artificial intelligence, but academics have warned that the technology could be used for cybercrime.

Computing pioneer Alan Turing said that a computer could be understood to be thinking if it passed the test, which requires that a computer dupes 30 per cent of human interrogators in five-minute text conversations.

Full story on The Independent.

Notes

The future has arrived: solar panel roads
The future is now. An idea to replace our current roads and highways with high tech, energy sustainable solar panels has now raised over a million dollars on Indiegogo.
Imagine smart roadways that could fuel up to 3 x the amount of energy that’s currently being used in the United States? And roadways that could give warnings when an obstruction or animal is ahead, roadways that are resistant to snow and ice, and that even light up to create traffic patterns and configurations depending on flow.

Check it out.

The future has arrived: solar panel roads

The future is now. An idea to replace our current roads and highways with high tech, energy sustainable solar panels has now raised over a million dollars on Indiegogo.

Imagine smart roadways that could fuel up to 3 x the amount of energy that’s currently being used in the United States? And roadways that could give warnings when an obstruction or animal is ahead, roadways that are resistant to snow and ice, and that even light up to create traffic patterns and configurations depending on flow.

Check it out.

Notes

Elevate good times

Modern society strives to be more efficient each day. We want to be better connected, uninterrupted, lighter and faster in every single aspect of our lives. It’s not surprising then that a development in the elevator industry recently made headlines when Hitachi announced that this stunning new skyscraper in Guangzhou, China would house the world’s fastest elevator, boasting ascending speeds of up to 45 miles per hour.

By 2016, Guangzhou CTF Finance Centre will be rocketing it’s residents and guests up to the 95th floor in 43 seconds, 15 miles per hour above the speed allowed on New York City streets.

The developers insist that the experience won’t be unpleasant or dangerous thanks to serious advances made in air pressure technology and a device called ‘Governor’ that prevents excessive speeds and lateral vibrations.

The first ever commercial Elevator was introduced in 1857 and rose at a measly 40-feet per minute or around 0.45mph, making Hitachi’s latest contraption 100 times the speed. Can we expect to be ascending at 4500mph by 2171? Lets hope not.

@Mingard is a regular contributor to Found Things.

Notes

Oculas

The recent acquisition of Oculus by Facebook sparked many debates on the future of both companies and the intentions of the Social Media network, who only a month ago was announcing the $19 billion purchase of WhatsApp messenger.

Outraged gamers and developers voiced concerns about the future of the Oculus and it’s innovative virtual reality headgear, questioning what Zuckerberg’s enterprise could bring to the platform and why the market leader didn’t carry on riding the wave of growth without external intervention.

Although the technology behind the flagship Oculus Rift has proven exciting for the future of virtual reality devices, the history of the concept has a history of failure, stretching decades, perhaps this is the reason the California-based tech visionaries (excuse the pun) took the decision to look up the food chain for a helping hand.

Check out this wonderful, not exactly timeless 1985 feature on the development of the VR headset. When three decades later the market remains small, is a money-splashing tech giant going to be the push that VR needs to finally make this ageing dream a reality?

@Mingard is a regular contributor to Found Things.

Notes

Silicon Valley’s youth problem
In start-up land, the young barely talk to the old (and vice versa). That makes for a lot of cool apps. But great technology? Not so much.
Full article on the New York Times.

Silicon Valley’s youth problem

In start-up land, the young barely talk to the old (and vice versa). That makes for a lot of cool apps. But great technology? Not so much.

Full article on the New York Times.

Notes

Transforming Formula One: 2014 rules explained

This new video from Red Bull sees Daniel Ricciardo and Sebastian Vettel explain the 2014 Formula 1 regulations – which are arguably the most complex the sport has ever seen.

At the start, thousands of car parts simultaneously assemble around Ricciardo to form the RB10. As he races to catch up Vettel in his RB9, the World Champion’s car becomes transparent while travelling at full speed, sequencing through the changes to the car to meet 2014’s regulations.

As well as providing information on the technical changes for 2014, the clip also presents a unique view of the technology at work inside this year’s F1 cars.

Awesome stuff.

1 Notes

Full-body 3D scan and print

Snap sculpture: DoubleMe3D makes personally commissioned sculptures, 10-17cm high, printed from 3D scans undertaken in their studio.

The process requires three minutes of sitting still. Materials include plastic, sandstone, aluminium, ceramics, bronze, silver or gold, and single colours (full-colour is planned).

I like how the process requires time being still, much like photography of old. Imagine where we’ll be in 10 years…

@ColonyClive is a regular contributor to Found Things.

Notes

Pit stop perfection

Ferrari F1: in and out in three seconds. Amazing.

Via @abovedave.

5 Notes

Incredible 3D Gifs created with a simple visual effect
Animated gifs seem to be everywhere these days, but some gif creators are taking the visual experience of viewing quick clips of silent motion to another level.

By carefully adding a couple of solid-coloured - typically white - vertical lines to the moving images, an three-dimensional effect is created.
As characters and objects move into the foreground, they appear to extend beyond the barrier of the image.

The solid, dividing strips serve as visual markers for the foreground. Once anything breaks out in font of them, blocking the view of the white dividers, your brain immediately translates this as a three-dimensional scene.
Via @mikedicks.

Incredible 3D Gifs created with a simple visual effect

Animated gifs seem to be everywhere these days, but some gif creators are taking the visual experience of viewing quick clips of silent motion to another level.

By carefully adding a couple of solid-coloured - typically white - vertical lines to the moving images, an three-dimensional effect is created.

As characters and objects move into the foreground, they appear to extend beyond the barrier of the image.

The solid, dividing strips serve as visual markers for the foreground. Once anything breaks out in font of them, blocking the view of the white dividers, your brain immediately translates this as a three-dimensional scene.

Via @mikedicks.

1 Notes

I wore a tiny gadget that took a photo of what I was doing every 30 seconds
The Narrative Clip is a plastic square that’s bigger than a quarter but smaller than a book of matches. There’s a metal clip on the back for attaching it to things and it houses a 5-megapixel camera that takes a picture every 30 seconds. Tap it with your finger twice to take a picture manually.
Dylan Love wore one in order to review it for Business Insider -

"It’s fun to be able to look back through the Narrative app and know exactly where you were at 1:13 PM last Tuesday, or how funny-looking that guy from the subway was this morning.
"The negative aspects of the Narrative are mostly social. People will notice it on your clothes and ask about it, which puts you in the awkward position of explaining that you’re secretly photographing everything that’s going on."

You can read his review here.

I wore a tiny gadget that took a photo of what I was doing every 30 seconds

The Narrative Clip is a plastic square that’s bigger than a quarter but smaller than a book of matches. There’s a metal clip on the back for attaching it to things and it houses a 5-megapixel camera that takes a picture every 30 seconds. Tap it with your finger twice to take a picture manually.

Dylan Love wore one in order to review it for Business Insider -

"It’s fun to be able to look back through the Narrative app and know exactly where you were at 1:13 PM last Tuesday, or how funny-looking that guy from the subway was this morning.

"The negative aspects of the Narrative are mostly social. People will notice it on your clothes and ask about it, which puts you in the awkward position of explaining that you’re secretly photographing everything that’s going on."

You can read his review here.

Notes

This is the state of computer science education in the UK

Apparently you can learn to teach to code in a day. Oh, and you can build a website in an hour.

It is clear that the Director of “Year of Code” has no idea what she means when she uses the word “code”. Does she have any idea how many different programming languages there are? Or the profound differences between, say, HTML and C++?

As ever, Twitter provides the best response -

The guardian has an interesting article highlighting the opportunistic commercial reality behind the Year of Code initiative.

It’s a depressing read.

The real problem here is trying to shoehorn the future into the past. What we really need is a revolution in education.

4 Notes

Your 60-hour work week is not a badge of honour
We’ve all had to deal with long, tough work weeks, whether it’s working over the weekend to meet a project deadline, pulling all-nighters to resolve a crisis, or the steady accretion of overtime in a death march.
It’s fairly common in the tech sector for employees to hold these tough weeks up as points of pride; something good they achieved or survived.
Jeff Archibald thinks that this is the wrong way to think of it. And he’s right.

"If you’re working 60 hours a week, something has broken down organisationally. You are doing two people’s jobs. You aren’t telling your boss you’re overworked (or maybe he/she doesn’t care). You are probably a pinch point, a bottleneck. You are far less productive. You are frantically swimming against the current, just trying to keep your head above water.
"We need to stop being proud of overworking ourselves."

Worth a read.

Your 60-hour work week is not a badge of honour

We’ve all had to deal with long, tough work weeks, whether it’s working over the weekend to meet a project deadline, pulling all-nighters to resolve a crisis, or the steady accretion of overtime in a death march.

It’s fairly common in the tech sector for employees to hold these tough weeks up as points of pride; something good they achieved or survived.

Jeff Archibald thinks that this is the wrong way to think of it. And he’s right.

"If you’re working 60 hours a week, something has broken down organisationally. You are doing two people’s jobs. You aren’t telling your boss you’re overworked (or maybe he/she doesn’t care). You are probably a pinch point, a bottleneck. You are far less productive. You are frantically swimming against the current, just trying to keep your head above water.

"We need to stop being proud of overworking ourselves."

Worth a read.

2 Notes

Canada’s first computer, 1951-52
Following on from Sunday’s find of a photo of London’s first computer, here’s a shot of Canada’s first computer, which was located at the Computation Center in the University of Toronto.
The photo was dug up by a relative, who now in her mid 80’s is completely wired to today’s technology. She was the keeper of the keys to this beast… and presumably other secrets of the day.
@ColonyClive is a regular contributor to Found Things.

Canada’s first computer, 1951-52

Following on from Sunday’s find of a photo of London’s first computer, here’s a shot of Canada’s first computer, which was located at the Computation Center in the University of Toronto.

The photo was dug up by a relative, who now in her mid 80’s is completely wired to today’s technology. She was the keeper of the keys to this beast… and presumably other secrets of the day.

@ColonyClive is a regular contributor to Found Things.