July 30, 2005

Make your MP3s HEARD

I love music, and I believe it should go everywhere I go. Now if you already have some nice speakers for the portable music player of your choice, or maybe even a regular boom box with an input on it then this post isn't for you.

Cambridge SoundWorks PlayDock MP3
This speaker unit will turn your iPod or other mp3 player into a boom box! It boasts a 15 watt powered subwoofer with 4-inch driver and approximately 10 hours of playback time. It'll even recharge "select MP3 players while AC powered". It's $199 on the Cambridge Soundworks website, which appears to be the only place it's available.

JBL OnTour
This next guy is one I can personally vouch for because I own one. It'll just about fit into a nice large cargo pocket, and you can put your mp3 player in another pocket and music will just follow you around. It's great and loud for both the price ($95 at BestBuy.com) and its size. The OnTour takes 4 AAA batteries which last at least a few hours. AC adapter included.

JBL website Has the specs

July 29, 2005

Track your kids 2

Forget buying the device that I mentioned here in order to spy on your kids location, now if you live in the UK, KidsOK.net will allow you to "Ping" you childs phone and recieve an image back on your phone with a map of their location! Wow guys, too bad parents can't build up, oh maybe trust, instead of cellular and gps networks in order to know where they're kids are. I love the little advisory at the bottom of their page (of course in miniature print) :

" KidsOK is intended to complement, not be a substitute for, normal parental supervision."

Realistic Robotics

Image From BBC.comA japanese scientist and professor named Ishiguru, has designed what is probably the most beleivable android in history, affectionately named "Repliee Q1". He claims that his robot can fool you for a few minutes, that is, into beleiving that she is real. Although it can only sit in one place, and is not self contained, this is another step towards real waking and talking beleivable andriods.

The BBC article is HERE

July 27, 2005

Lexi's Art 2

Art by Lexi

De-thawing Dead Dogs

"US scientists have succeeded in reviving the dogs after three hours of clinical death, paving the way for trials on humans within years."

The subject's veins are drained of blood and filled with an ice-cold salt solution. The brain shows no activity, and the heart does not beat, making them scientifically dead. After replacing the blood and applying an electric shock the dogs come back to life "perfectly normal, with no brain damage".

The research I intended to one day allow field medics the ability to transport wounded persons to a proper facility before they are unable to be saved. They predict this technology could start saving lives as soon as 10 years from now. It's called “suspended animation with delayed resuscitation” or “applied emergency hypothermia.”

In my opinion, this could be the first few steps towards developing cryogenic sleep technology, or "Hyper-sleep", where a human could be suspended in an unconcious state for months or even many years without aging one minute.

Official Statement from Sarar Center

July 26, 2005


Hi folks, I'm Ben's brother Drew. I told Ben I would post something on his blog a few months ago, and I'm just now getting around to it. Ben, I better get some glowsticks for this! (Heh, just kidding.) I'm a big fan of homebrew technology, and while looking for something to post about, I saw this really cool thing. Enjoy...

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

A cantenna is a directional waveguide antenna for long-range WiFi (cf. Hi-fi) used to increase the range of (or snoop on) a wireless network. Originally built using a Pringles® Potato Chip can, a cantenna can be constructed quickly, easily, and inexpensively using readily obtained materials:

  • Four small nuts/bolts;
  • A short length of medium-gauge wire;
  • A tin can roughly 8 cm (3.66 inches) in diameter (the longer the better); and
  • An N-Female chassis mount connector, available at any electronic supply store.

An optimal design will use a tin can longer than a Pringles can. Instructions for constructing and connecting a cantenna can be found at Turnpoint.net.

While cantennas are useful for extending a local area network (LAN), the tiny design makes them ideal for mobile applications such as wardriving. The design of the cantenna is so simple that it is often the first antenna WiFi experimenters learn to build. Even the Secret Service has taken an interest in the cantenna.

External links

July 20, 2005

Stem Cells FAQ

Stem Cell Researtch is a very hot topic in news right now, and sometimes its hard to grasp because of the advanced medical nature of the whole idea. Not to worry, Wired.com has a great "Crash Course" about stem cells in FAQ format.

July 15, 2005

Geocaching with Google Earth

Now you can browse geocaches inside Google Earth. If you've never heard of geocaching, hop over to Geocaching.com and check out the GPS-based sport where "you are the search engine".

Andy Fowler has created EarthCache, a kml script that will retrieve the 7 closest geocaches to the center of your view in Google Earth. Clicking on a cache will link you to its web page on geocaching.com. After the camera inside google earth is at rest for 10-15 seconds, the script refreshes the 7 closest caches.

Weather Mapping

Okay so this is one of the things I think will be very cool to watch evolve as more people start to realize and utilize the power of the wonderful mapping systems Google has bestowed onto us.

Meet Google Weather Maps (http://www.weatherstationmaps.info) which uses interesting icons to show temperature and wind direction as well as sunny/rainy/cloudy icons. This view can be exported to Google Earth by clicking "Export current view" to the right of the map, or for radar maps in Google Earth, just select a state click "show".

Now you have a radar map (with transparency) which can be edited to update automatically by right-clicking each overlay (in the my places pane) and selecting "edit". Also you can right-click the overlay and select refresh to manually update. Don't forget the transparency slider for your image, which appears when you select an overlay. I believe this is the evolutionary beginning of the integration of real-time weather satellite/radar imagery maps and Google Earth.

I also found this collection of satellite image overlays (hint: click "download this file" in the center of the page) on GoogleEarthHacks.com. Its a collection of WeatherChannel satellite images imported into Google Earth and overlayed and they should automatically update every hour. The update frequency can be edited as mentioned above. (note the picture 2 posts down under GoogleEarthHacks.com shows one of these overlays in action)

July 14, 2005


A great place to start your tour of the earth. Originally started before Google Earth was free so they link to google maps (maps.google.com) and Google Earth links (kmz or kml files) are being added now. Today's post? Possibly a giant manta ray off the cost of Rio De Janeiro, Brazil.


Oh yah this is RIGHT up my alley! Gotta love these guys, devoted to getting the most out of the capabilities of Google Earth. GEH (Google Earth Hacks) has a downloads sections which includes added 3d models like the "Statue of Liberty" and the "Golden Gate Bridge", network-linked weather map image overlays, and even REAL-TIME traffic maps in Atlanta and Seattle. I expect great things from GEH. They also have forums for talking about discovering and hacking GEarth.

July 13, 2005

Google Maps Mania

So Google MAPS which is a free web-based mapping system (much better and more powerful than mapquest or the like) has recently released the APIs, which allow anyone to create new and interesting uses for the mapping system, like Craig's List real-estate maps or Free Wifi maps. Heres a great website that is trying to follow all the different projects that have spawned from this new power. Hope you enjoy it!

Google Maps MANIA

July 12, 2005

Track your kids with GPS

Okay so this is Navigation Week in honor of Google Earth being released for free. To start us off here's a little gadget that will track your kids for you via GPS, then send the information to a server allowing access on a web browser, or by receiving txt messages on your cell. Engadget points out many reasons why this is a horrible idea, and that people should just give their kids a cellphone and learn how to trust them.

July 09, 2005

ArtBots: Robot Talent Show

Theres some real talent here for sure. Some robots draw, or create art, others are the art themselves. You got to see it to beleive it.

Via Slashdot.org

July 04, 2005

What will Google do next? THIS!!

Prepare to discover possibly the most advanced mapping system ever, and its free for personal use. Think magic carpet ride, flying from space to street level. Add layers like roads, 3d terrain and buildings, schools, dining and more! Pro version available for $20 with GPS compatibility, higher resolution printing, and ability to import spreadsheets.

click image to enlarge

Get started at the Google Earth Homepage, or here's a link directly to the free version download page.

July 02, 2005

Briefcase form factor Solar Panels

Not quite as convenient as the Juice Bag, a back-pack that packs a flexible solar panel right in the main flap, but it boasts about twice as much wattage (13 watts instead of the 6.3 on the juice bag). Also cheaper at £99.99 (converted online to $177.06), for the dedicated techy who needs a plug anywhere they have sun.

13 Watt Amorphous Briefcase Solar Generator from SolarMAX

Hard Drives Approching the Terabyte

Cnet (News.com) claims that we may see the first terabyte hard drives by the year 2007 or 2008, and possibly 2 terabyte drives by 2009. Gawsh, thats alot of Digital Video, MP3s , and Britney Spears music videos.

a terabyte = 1 trillion bytes or 1,000 gigabytes

NASA on collision-course with comet

So as you may or may not know, Nasa plans on breaking up the 4-mile-wide comet Tempel 1 by tossing a washing-machine sized space craft at it. The point is that they're tying to get a peek at whatever is inside the comet, NOT avoid a catastrophic impact with the Earth a la Armageddon the movie. Naturally, with this day and age we can get a front row seat from our computers screens:

NOAO has constantly updating images which will get more frequent an hour before and after the collision.

Mauna Kea Observatories will be providing "near real-time images" of comet Tempel 1 on July 3, as seen from Hawaii.

CREDIT: Story on Wired.com has some extra links.