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Wireless Networking

Submission + - Readerless RFID: Berkeley's Mesh Network

donzo writes: "eWEEK has an article about advances in RFID: "UC/Berkeley researchers have created tiny wireless 'motes' (aka network sensors) that use radio signals to communicate where they are located in physical space. The end goal: an RFID network that could revolutionize the industry with its ability to locate tagged items without the aid of readers... 'What we showed in the university was that you could network together a lot of sensors,' said Kristofer Pister, a professor of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science at UC/Berkeley who made a name for himself with his 1997 development of technology called Smart Dust — a self-organizing network of tiny wireless 'motes.'... Intended to be about the size of a grain of sand or a piece of dust — the motes from Dust Networks are currently about the size of a quarter — the motes contain sensors, computing circuits, bi-directional wireless technology, and an antenna and very low-battery power supply that are external to the chip. The motes can detect light, temperature or vibrations."
Patents

Submission + - "Softwarepatents are Evil" says the BSA

Paul Cobbaut writes: ""Patent trolling activities essentially hold inventors and tech companies hostage and clog up the patent system with injunctions and excessive litigation." This sounds like a Slashdot comment, but it is written by the BSA on their webpage. Who ever thought the BSA would become so insightful ?"
Games

Submission + - Child's Play begins for this year

DJLuc1d writes: Penny-Arcade's succesful charity, Child's Play is begining its drive for this year. For those who are unfamiliar with Child's Play, its goal is to help hospitals around the world by providing sick kids with not only video games, but consoles, books, movies, and other entertainment while they are in the hospital.
Privacy

Submission + - Internet Webcams installed on Texas/Mexico Border

Anonymous Immigrant writes: Texas recently installed Internet viewable surveillance cameras on the Mexican border as a part of their Border Watch program. They have provided this "to stress the system by providing public access to numerous surveillance cameras. Thank you for helping test this important capability." So I figured Slashdot might be able to help out. Login is required — try borderwatch@gmail.com/X9kn2M4c — and they require Internet Exploder, plus a plug-in from E-Watch.

After all that, you get a screen with thumbnails from nine webcams that you can then click on to get live footage — update rate appears to be a couple of frames/second. They go on to say "If you should notice any suspicious activity while viewing the camera images please notify the State by selecting the "Report Suspicious Activity" button under the camera view."

I watched for a while, but it was about as exciting as watching grass grow. Will this be an effective tool in "securing the border for the people of Texas?"

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