The thing about ovens is that they get hot--really hot. In general, this is a good thing, considering it's very hard to cook anything in a cold oven. But, if you're anything like me, you've brushed a hand or arm across some part of your very hot oven during your cooking career. Personally, I hate that, and I'm more than willing to do whatever it takes to limit that experience.
The Table Tennis Triples and Modular Table Tennis System (MTTS) was a finalist in the Australian Next Big Thing Awards.
I love how the invention's "unique benefits" are listed on the award site:
"- More people play on one table: social benefits, reduced waiting times
- Greater shot range, fairer 'Triples' scoring system
- Conventional tables can be reversibly 'Triples' retrofitted
- Numerous games/table shapes possible with the MTTS sectors"
(Hat tip to Jordan Kanarek from frog)
Add IBM to the hordes of companies trying to build a better solar cell.
The computing giant on Monday is expected to announce a deal with a Japanese semiconductor equipment manufacturer to make thin-film solar cells from CIGS, a combination of copper, indium, gallium, and selenide.
Neither IBM nor its partner, Tokyo Ohka Kogyo (TOK), plan to manufacture cells themselves. Rather, they will develop technology that can be licensed to solar companies in two or three years, said Supratik Guha, lead scientist for photovoltaics at IBM Research.
IBM has already built a prototype device. Once made at large volumes on … Read more
To wring efficiencies out of data centers, IBM has gone back to a familiar playbook: standard-size building blocks.
The company on Wednesday will launch an expanded line of data centers that use a modular design to cut energy consumption in half, compared with existing data centers.
Data centers around the world account for about 2 percent of all energy consumption and there is ample room for improvement, according to experts.
For example, virtualization software can consolidate multiple computing jobs onto fewer … Read more
The GSM Association's Mobile Innovation Marketplace has wrapped up in Atlanta, and as expected two start-up companies won the right to go to the 2009 GSMA World Congress in Barcelona. The two winning firms are Ubidyne, a company that develops digital radio systems, and Modu, the maker of the world's lightest cell phone.
I checked out Modu earlier this year at the 2008 World Congress. The Israeli company has developed a concept for a modular cell phone that can be placed into a "jacket" that changes both the appearance and the functionality of the handset. It'… Read more
Each February, the GSM Association (GSMA) organizes the world's largest cell phone trade show in Barcelona. And after a couple years of advocating to go to the GSMA World Congress, Bonnie Cha and I attended the show this year where both of us were astounded at the cool cell phones we saw. As the show has a global focus, it has a wider range of products, companies, and services than the CTIA show can offer. The only trouble is, you have to go all the way to Barcelona to see it.
But this week the GSMA is dipping its … Read more
Just a mirage? Rick Poynor, in a beautifully honest article for ID Magazine ("Down with Innovation"), takes the "design thinkers," the "innovators through design," or the "design-ovators," as he calls them, head on:
"Design thinkers set great store by business targets, by driving the enterprise forward, because it is exactly what their clients want to hear and it gets them work. Seen from outside the cozy bond of service provider and client, this is a severely limited way of viewing design, and the total domination of current design discussion by this … Read more
IBM has developed technology that will let solar cells withstand the heat of more than a 1,000 suns.
At a technical conference on Thursday, representatives from IBM Research's photovoltaics research will present a method for cooling concentrating photovoltaics, a solar design where light is magnified onto high-performance solar cells.
Heat is a serious issue when it comes to concentrating photovoltaics, or CPV. The efficiency of cells degrades at high heat and can damage, and conceivably destroy, equipment at extremely high temperatures.
IBM said that its liquid-metal cooling technique, adapted from high-powered computers' chips, can remove roughly three-quarters of … Read more
I just left a meeting with a large enterprise that dumped Microsoft Sharepoint for Alfresco for content management and collaboration. While that makes me smile, the thing that I loved hearing most from the vice president of IT was her general thoughts on open source, and why it's getting more play within this media company, including Alfresco, MySQL, Liferay, and more:
The culture here is about freedom and the ability to impact things ourselves. We're adopting more and more open source because we want to be in control of our own destiny....
In some cases, open source has meant higher implementation costs upfront but lower costs over the long run.
There is a resistance here to being framed into a long-term proprietary path: Closed APIs, closed standards, and closed source force us onto a vendor's licensing treadmill - we don't want that. We want flexibility and choice. We think about IT for the long run.
Music to my ears, and money in her pocket. I meet more and more IT people just like her, people that are tired of having vendors dictate their possibilities.… Read more
"The difference between the optimist and the pessimist is that the pessimist has more facts," said Jean-Paul Betb?ze, Chief Economist and Head of Economic Research Department, Cr?dit Agricole S.A., in a panel at the Millken Institute's Global Conference 2008 in Los Angeles a couple of weeks ago. True as this may be, his statement stood in sharp contrast to the overall vibe of the event: Yes, we can, was the prevailing sentiment, and the overwhelming majority of attendees would probably have outed themselves as fervent optimists, despite an abundance of fact-featuring PowerPoint slides supporting … Read more