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Comment: Re:Why? (Score 2) 133

by Mr.Zuka (#44862377) Attached to: 3D-Printed Gun Bought and Displayed By London Art Museum

I'm still not sure what makes 3D printed guns any different or more special than a gun produced with CAD plans and a used CNC machine.

It's really a matter of skill. Getting metal to spec, dealing with heating and shrinkage, using a lathe all take skill.
Loading some plastic and pressing print doesn't.
Think of it like the script kiddie of gun making.

Biotech

Two Research Groups Create 'Electric Skin' 52

Posted by Soulskill
from the toasters-look-like-us-now dept.
Flash Modin writes "Two separate teams, one from UC Berkeley and the other from Stanford, have created distinct types of artificial skin that could find uses in prosthetics or artificial intelligence (Data in First Contact, anyone?). The first team coupled organic electronics with an elastic polymer to make electric skin that could sense a butterfly landing on it (abstract). The second team put a flexible material over a conductive rubber compound which had transistors implanted in it. The device can sense touch when the rubber is compressed, changing the electrical resistance (abstract)."
Handhelds

The Coming Onslaught of iPad Competitors 497

Posted by timothy
from the let's-back-off-from-the-k-word dept.
harrymcc writes "The iPad is selling as well as it is in part because no large manufacturer has had a direct rival out yet. But boy, is that going to change in the next few months. Over at Technologizer, I rounded up known information on 32 current and future tablet computing devices, from potentially worthy iPad competitors to wannabees to interesting specialty devices. By early 2011 these things are going to be everywhere, and it'll be fascinating to see how they fare." Related: the tablet-type device I've been watching most eagerly, Notion Ink's Adam, seems to finally have a realistic manufacturing prediction and price range (by November; up to $498 for the version with 3G and Pixel Qi screen).
Medicine

Three Ground-Breaking Miniature Biosensors 18

Posted by samzenpus
from the hospital-pill dept.
kkleiner writes "Over the past few years, several research teams have developed increasingly smaller and cheaper biosensors with improved detection capabilities and faster turnaround times. Whether you are a doctor diagnosing patients in the rural areas of Africa or a Homeland Security agent working to thwart an act of bioterrorism, one of these little devices should be your sidekick."
Businesses

Facebook Mafiosi Go To the Mattresses vs. Zynga 102

Posted by Soulskill
from the concrete-galoshes dept.
sympleko writes "Zynga has the lion's share of traffic in Facebook applications, and Mafia Wars is one of their most popular social games. Collapsing under the weight of over 26 million users, Zynga has been scrambling to thwart hard-core gamers who reverse-engineer URLs or script the game to optimize their enjoyment. Many of the workarounds have annoyed users who were accustomed to various game features, and even worse, the hastily-deployed changes have resulted in many players losing access to the game, in-game prizes, or statistics. Fed up with a software company seemingly bent on discouraging people from enjoying their product, a number of tagged players have organized a boycott of all Zynga games. The first 24-hour boycott on Sunday 12/13 resulted in an 11% decline in Daily Active Users, and an emergency thread on Zynga's forums (from which most of the flames were deleted). The current boycott, extending Wednesday through Sunday is being supported by a 428K strong Facebook group. At issue is the social contract between software companies and their devoted user base, as well as the nefarious tactics Zynga has used to raise cash."

Comment: he meant to do it, then had the pictures removed (Score 5, Interesting) 219

by Mr.Zuka (#30425522) Attached to: Facebook Founder's Pictures Go Public

I think it says a lot about his personality that he posted to his newsfeed that he meant to post the pictures, then somehow the pictures mysteriously disappear. Kind of scary with an ego that he can't admit to a mistake that small. If there ever was a security breach would facebook ever admit to it?

Social Networks

Farmville, Social Gaming, and Addiction 251

Posted by Soulskill
from the tragedy-of-the-common-interest dept.
MarkN writes "Facebook has been trumpeting the fact that Farmville, the most popular game on its site, has more users than Twitter, with 69 million playing over a month and 26 million playing each day. Combined with Facebook's announcement that they have hit 350 million users, that means one out of every five people on Facebook is playing Farmville. Gamasutra has a post taking a critical analysis of Farmville, its deceptively slow level grind, how a number of gameplay features end up as simply decorative since they aren't balanced with the benefits of raising crops, and discussing why Farmville succeeds so well in virally spreading itself and addicting people."
Input Devices

BrainPort Lets the Blind "See" With Their Tongues 131

Posted by kdawson
from the battery-testing dept.
Hugh Pickens writes "Scientific American reports that a new device called 'BrainPort' aims to restore the experience of vision for the blind and visually impaired by relying on the nerves on the tongue's surface to send light signals to the brain. BrainPort collects visual data through a small digital video camera and converts the signal into electrical pulses sent to the tongue via a 'lollipop' that sits directly on the tongue, where densely packed nerves receive the incoming electrical signals. White pixels yield a strong electrical pulse and the electrodes spatially correlate with the pixels, so that if the camera detects light fixtures in the middle of a dark hallway, electrical stimulations will occur along the center of the tongue. Within 15 minutes of using the device, blind people can begin interpreting spatial information. 'At first, I was amazed at what the device could do,' says research director William Seiple. 'One guy started to cry when he saw his first letter.'" There is some indication that the signals from the tongue are processed by the visual cortex. The company developing the BrainPort will submit it to the FDA for approval later this month, and it could be on sale (for around $10,000) by the end of the year.
It's funny.  Laugh.

+ - MSNBC labels all non-Microsoft tech as uncool 3

Submitted by Mr.Zuka
Mr.Zuka (166632) writes "I know the MS in MSNBC is for Microsoft but this article goes a little to far. Apparently the list of gadgets that will make you look like a jerk and uncool are: a Blackberry, Bluetooth headsets, Tivo, MacBook Air, iPod, Linux, and the Segway. The article goes as far as associating neck beards with Linux and lists not curing cancer as a reason to not buy a Tivo. It practically reads like a laundry list of competing gadgets to Microsoft. So I guess this leaves the question, (No, not really) what technology is Microsoft planning to compete with the Segway?"

Comment: This is why scruples are good (Score 5, Interesting) 137

by Mr.Zuka (#26527677) Attached to: Belkin's President Apologizes For Faked Reviews

We've seen this over and over recently for companies and politics. Some underling gets caught doing underhanded stuff, the company/government hang them out to dry, then it comes to light they knew about it the whole time.
Just remember this the next time your boss asks for something ethically questionable but says they will take full responsibility.

Staff meeting in the conference room in 3 minutes.

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