this is unique. "The Nano Song" is performed here by UC Berkeley students Ryan
Miyakawa (music) and Glory Liu (song). Sure, it is a bit goofy to you and me, but
maybe it serves its stated purpose of introducing nanotechnology into mainstream
parlance. Warning, some props are not what they might seem.
There have been many
headlines lately about the shrinking number of women in engineering.
Tufts University's "Nerd Girls" are working to break the stigmas and stereotypes
of women in engineering. "We are a growing, global movement which celebrates smart-girl
individuality that's revolutionizing our future. We want to encourage other girls
to change their world through Science, Technology, Engineering and Math, while embracing
their feminine power." Things They Believe: Brains are beautiful. Geek is Chic.
Smart is sexy. Not either/or.
As if we needed another
example of sheer governmental idiocy, here is a cell phone video shot by someone
in NYC yesterday as the backup Air Force One 747 flew low over Manhattan while being
escorted by an F-16 fighter. The White House wanted a new photo of the presidential
transport with the Statue of Liberty in the background (carbon footprint?). Watch
the panicked response of Nyers. Terrorists (aka those who cause man-made disasters)
are getting a good laugh at this.
Just how secure (or not secure) is RFID? Listen to
Mythbusters' Adam Savage's tale of what happened when they decided
to do a story on RFID, and why, so says he, there never will be an RFID episode.
It is a good example of how financial sponsors influence what information will or
will not be presented to the public. There were 210 comments on the video when this
Wally Wallington reminds me of my father-in-law. Both guys can move
mountains single-handedly, using simple levers, pulleys, and a lot of innate knowledge
about how to move immensely heavy things from point A to point B. Mr. Wallington,
a retired carpenter, erected this 22,000 lb concrete pillar as a demonstration of
how monuments such as Stonehenge could have been built 4,500 years ago.
Proving once again the
capability of determined individuals, auto body repairman Steve Eves, designed,
built and launched this 1/10th scale
Saturn V rocket. On April 25, 2009, the 36-foot-tall, 1600-lb
"model," powered by 9 rocket motors producing 8000 lbs of thrust, experienced an
absolutely flawless launch and recovery. Incredibly, the gigantic 1st stage
landed standing up! More often than not, large projects like this fail to execute
- usually due to a recovery system malfunction.
You know times are not very good when cable news networks are doing
reports on the benefits of high tech pawn shops. This shop in NYC specializes in
iPods, cell phones, camcorders, video games, etc. It definitely does not look like
the typical kind of pawn shop I've seen where shelves are full of dusty, 1970s era
stereos, jewelry that looks like it came from your grandmother's bureau, and beat-up
rifles on the wall. One thing the two types of shops do have in common: they are
likely filled with stolen goods.
SolidWorks has a funny set of videos called, "3 Dudes Gone 3D." In the words
of the promo poster subtitle: "CAD brought them together. A cramped trailer might
tear them apart." Stephen, Kish, and Bob exemplify what a typical SolidWorks environment
is like - kind of the mechanical analogy of AWR's
IE3D-SI, or ACS's
LINC2. The shorts are
a great marketing scheme - they even sell
now, most people have seen photos of the world's first computer mouse, designed
by Douglas Engelbart. It was made of wood and had one button. Here is a demonstration
video made on December 9, 1968, during a public debut at the Fall Joint Computer
Conference (FJCC). The
computer it interfaced with was part of the fledgling Arpanet, which evolved into
D, C, A, AA, and AAA battery cells have been around for nearly a
century. Now we have T cells, where the T is for tree. Work being done by MIT uses
probes buried in trees and the ground to generate a power source based on the pH
differences. Open circuit voltage ranges between 50 mV and 200 mV. Using a connected
mesh and some circuitry, these networks are targeting forest fire detection and
prediction that can be deployed in high risk areas. Short bursts of info will be
sent periodically wirelessly.
CubeSats have been around for a few
years now. CubeSat Project was developed by Cal Poly and Stanford University's Space
Systems Development Lab. It creates affordable launch opportunities for university
research. The 10x10x10cm, 1 kg cubes are stuffed into a spring-loaded deployment
tube that ejects them once in orbit.
Kits can be purchased for around $8k to get you started. Launches cost around
Workshops are available.
"Our rock stars
aren't like your rock stars." That is the theme of Intel's latest series of commercials
- ingenious, IMHO. My favorite stars Ajay Bhatt, co-inventor of the USB. Another
scenario only someone who has "been there" searching for a die can