Archive for August, 2007

Sony powers Walkman with battery running on sugar

Woman with bio cellSony announced the development of a bio battery that generates electricity from the chemical reaction of enzymes in the battery feeding on an added sugar solution.

Even the casing, measuring 1.5 inches along each edge in the prototype, is far more environmentally friendly than current battery casings, as it’s made from a vegetable based plastic (polylactate – a corn derived bioplastic).

The test bio battery hooked up in a series of four has generated an electrical output of 50 milliwatts, which Sony says is the highest level ever achieved for passive-type bio batteries. This is enough power to allow for music play back on a memory-type Walkman.

The Sony sugar powered bio battery
A sugar solution is poured into the
top of each cell; enzymes within the
cell react with the solution, and thus
generate electricity, which powers
the music player...

(more…)

August 30, 2007 at 17:03 Leave a comment

How to fix stuck LCD pixels ?

LCD screenStuck pixels on LCD screens are an unfortunate reality. If you’ve never had to deal with stuck pixels, you have to know that these little screen defects are usually caused by malfunctioning transistors or an uneven distribution of the LCD liquid inside the display. Fortunately, this problem can usually be fixed.

Note: There’s a (big) difference between a “dead” pixel and a “stuck” pixel.
As you might know, an LCD pixel consists in fact of 3 liquid crystals: a red, a green and a blue one. If one of them stay lit, we have a “stuck” pixel. If one of them stops working, we speak about a “dead” pixel.

It is possible to get those stuck pixels in working order again via a simple (and free) piece of software…

(more…)

August 28, 2007 at 11:46 6 comments

Smart Image Resizing Cuts The Useless Out Of Your Pics

Seam Carving

Ariel Shamir of the Efi Arazi School of Computer Science in Herzliya, Israel, is working on an interesting new concept: content-aware “smart” image sizing:

Retargeting is a new technology focused on solving problems with changing sizes of digital photography, while traditional crops often fails to include all elements and resize may make the image too small to distinguish, retargeting, using an algorithm, recognizes what’s relevant to the image, and column by column of pixels are removed.

(more…)

August 23, 2007 at 13:49 Leave a comment

Google Earth goes “boldy where no man has ever gone before…”

Google shows star charts

Google launched a new service called Sky that lets you explore the heavens from within Google Earth. You get a 3D view of all the constellations viewable from earth, and you can explore them in 3D.

(more…)

August 22, 2007 at 14:07 Leave a comment

HD video support added in latest Flash version code-named “Moviestar”

Flash logoToday Adobe Systems announced a beta version of its web-pervasive Flash Player, code-named “Moviestar” that can display HD video content using the open-source H.264 standard. The H.264 codec is part of the MPEG-4 video standard, and it’s implemented in both the Blu-ray and HD DVD high-def formats. The company also announced support for High Efficiency AAC audio and hardware-accelerated, multicore video playback. The beta will be available today at labs.adobe.com.

(more…)

August 21, 2007 at 20:54 Leave a comment

Microsoft’s Photosynth now available as Firefox plugin

MS Photosynth logoPhotosynth is a new technology developed by Microsoft’s Live Labs that takes a large collection of photos of a place or an object, analyzes them for similarities, and displays them in a reconstructed three-dimensional space.It really is amazing. This technology has a gazillion applications from consumer oriented 3D tours of vacation spots, travel planning and other event sharing to military and commercial use for area simulations, strategic analysis, mapping and so on.
(more…)

August 7, 2007 at 10:50 Leave a comment

Thunderbird to be separated from Mozilla.com ?

Thunderbird logo

According to Mitchell Baker, Chief Lizard Wrangler, Mozilla is gonna be separated from the Mozilla Foundation in some way.

“We have concluded that we should find a new, separate organizational setting for Thunderbird; one that allows the Thunderbird community to determine its own destiny.”

Mozilla is currently only focused on Firefox:

“Thunderbird effort is dwarfed by the enormous energy and community focused on the web, Firefox and the ecosystem around it. As a result, Mozilla doesn’t focus on Thunderbird as much as we do browsing and Firefox and we don’t expect this to change in the foreseeable future.”

Read more:

August 3, 2007 at 09:17 Leave a comment


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