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Comment "Reference indicator" related prior art & cont (Score 2) 121

This is not a patent on autonomous driving. That would be very hard to do given the extensive prior art. Instead, the patent is basically focused the vehicle switching modes or executing an autonomous motion based on a QR code or some other infrastructure based marker that points at an URL. Many other teams have used infrastructure markers to indicated a change in vehicle mode. For example, California PATH encodes a binary 0101 signal using N-S-N-S magnet orientation, several Japanese teams use RF-based roadway beacons, and a variety of teams use painted markings (e.g., Civis bus in Las Vegas). However, most of these use internally stored references and maps on the vehicles. Also, some of the DSRC implementations conceived by US DOT include autonomous actions based on information received over RF from nearby vehicles. The difference here is that this patent is about using the reference to look up a command over the internet. It is a small delta on existing work.

Having said this, the idea raises all sorts of questions about man-in-the-middle attacks.

Submission + - Man with quadriplegia controls robot arm with mind (post-gazette.com)

awtbfb writes: Tim Hemmes, with the help of University of Pittsburgh researchers, successfully controlled a robot arm in three dimensions. He's had quadriplegia for seven years. The feat was accomplished using implanted ECoG electrodes and weeks of computer training. From the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, "Ever since his accident, Mr. Hemmes said, he's had the goal of hugging his daughter Jaylei." Next up are six more 30-day participants, followed by a year-long study.

Comment Re:Good Riddance to Bad Business (Score 1) 443

These book chains are dying because they're trying to do business as if nothing has changed. They're hiring the cheapest, dumbest possible labour when people are only willing to go to a bookstore and pay a bit more than they would at Amazon because they want to talk to someone knowledgeable and well-read about books.

Actually, the flagship Borders in Ann Arbor was notoriously difficult to get hired at. They had a hard core literature test for prospective employees. I know English majors who failed the test.

Comment Look at the forest, not the trees (Score 3, Interesting) 306

Everyone is looking at the tree, not the forest. While everyone is going to jump on the "Apple did this to make money" argument, you know a major reason for this key was Apple's way of keeping content providers happy. Now that it's broken, there is a new "analog hole" for audio and video content. It is easy to imagine a computer using this to create a digital media file rather than routing to speakers. I suspect it won't be long before content providers pressure Apple into using secondary data to confirm iTunes is talking to a legit device.

Comment Correction, they are from both CMU and Stanford (Score 1) 293

Google actually built an all-star team. They hired the tech leads for both the Carnegie Mellon team (top finisher for 1st Grand Challenge and won the Urban Grand Challenge) and the Stanford team (won the 2nd Grand Challenge). They also hired a bunch of the other developers from each team. I was at Chris Urmson's recent presentation at Carnegie Mellon about the Google cars. The approach the Google team is using looks predominately like the CMU method but with key features of the Stanford team.

Some well known facts within the robotics community, but not outside: The Stanford team was a former CMU prof (Thrun) and his technical lead (Montemerlo) was still finishing his CMU PhD while working for Stanford. His co-advisor was the prof running the CMU team (Whittaker) and his CMU classmate was the technical lead for CMU's teams (Urmson). Google hired three out of four on this list.

Comment Re:thrusting (Score 4, Insightful) 594

However, I'd argue that 3D movies have already gotten past the blue LED phase. Certainly Cameron's Avatar was a highly engrossing (both to the viewer and the bottom line) film even without the 3D, and without throwing somebody's yo-yo in your face ...

I've been telling people that Cameron got Avatar "right" in terms of 3D exactly for this reason. There is such a stark contrast between it and other 3D movies in that there were only a couple scenes where it was clear they were showing off the 3D. Even those had reasons where the scene kind of made sense (like refocusing on near/far during the diary videos). I think Avatar will be a real benchmark in 3D strictly because it shows you can do well with 3D without being an eye-poker movie. It will be interesting to see how many other directors learn from Cameron's willingness to try to do it right.

Comment Easy solution (Score 3, Interesting) 175

Don't post media on unprotected pages. No big loss behind this step. Friends and family can handle a simple user/password combination - we've been doing this for years. Trust me, the rest of the world doesn't really want to see your pictures of the kids at their friend Joey's birthday party.

Comment Re:ah yes, CC != subtitles (Score 1) 396

Grandparent: There is a pretty big difference between CC and subtitles. The former can be manipulated in format, font, etc and often include details like "Phone Ringing" that are left out of subtitles. Even subtitles that are supposedly for the deaf and hard of hearing often lack these audible descriptors. Subtitles also don't move based on the scene.. For example, text for edited CC is often positioned from side to side to match two people bantering or italicized for an off screen speaker (example). Real-time CC, which is not typical in movies, is the stuff you see scrolling at the top or bottom of screens in bars during sports and news. That's closer to subtitles due to the time pressure the captioner is under.

Parent: There is a digital CC spec but, like line21, it basically gets hosed by HDMI.

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