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Wired

The most efficient possible display technology would be something that bypasses the eyes altogether and sends information straight to the brain. Sadly, cranial USB ports are still pretty hard to install. The second most efficient possible display technology anyone's devised projects images directly into the eye. The dream of a wearable virtual retinal display, or VRD, has been around for nearly two decades; it's on the horizon, but it's still going to be a while until it gets here.


The idea of VRD was first tossed around at the University of Washington's Human Interface Technology Lab back around 1991. Thomas Furness, who'd been working on helmet-based displays for the Air Force in the '80s, and research engineer Joel Kollin were part of the team that put together the initial (and enormous) prototype. The concept was that tiny, ultra-low-power lasers could paint an image onto the human retina by scanning across it at high speed,

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The Register

In years to come, the secret supertroopers of SOCOM may be able to cause a cell tower to stop working, a vehicle’s fuel tank to suddenly explode, or a single person to inexplicably be incinerated - all completely silently and tracelessly, without anyone knowing they were ever there and not so much as a spent bullet left behind.  

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www.reuters.com

 Worldwide demand for rare earths, covering 15 entries on the periodic table of elements, is expected to exceed supply by some 40,000 tonnes annually in several years unless major new production sources are developed. One promising U.S. source is a rare earths mine slated to reopen in California by 2012.

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How Stuff Works

"The Terminator" showed us a future where battalions of sentient, humanoid robots wage war on mankind. While that vision is still well within the realm of science fiction, many countries are looking into creating robot soldiers, including the United States. In fact, in 2001, the Floyd D. Spence National Defense Authorization Act set a goal for the U.S. Armed Forces -- create an unmanned combat vehicle force that would account for one third of all vehicles in operation. So far, the robot designs don't resemble the Terminator, but they can be just as lethal. The U.S. Army's Future Combat Systems (FCS) plan is a comprehensive strategy to upgrade the nation's military systems across all branches of the Armed Forces. The plan calls for an integrated battle system -- a fleet of different vehicles that will use up to 80 percent of the same parts, new unattended sensors designed to collect intelligence in the field, and unmanned launch systems that can fire missiles at e

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Free people's minds and the future will bring us independence and freedom... this is what is feared by parasites that live off the productive.   Every government program is nothing more than an excuse to accumulate a bucket of money that can then be poured into the waiting bucket of those that created the accumulation of many different 'buckets of money'.   STOP THIS.... and the future is full of almost unimaginable wealth for even the poorest. Once this is realized, there will be a struggle for our... 'consent'.   Here are just a few examples to jump start your imagination.

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Wired

1954 things started to change.

In that year Tokyo Telecommunications picked up a patent from Bell Laboratories and license from Western Electric to make transistor radios in Japan.

The TR-55 served as the template for almost all the portable gadgets we use today. Everything from the iPod to the Game Boy can trace its basic handheld design to the TR-55’s form factor. More importantly, use of the transistor became widespread in all electronics allowing for the development of LCD TVs, smartphones and netbooks.

You know, basically all of the stuff Sony makes today.

 

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Wired

Put your Sony camera onto the Party Shot and it will, Sony says, “act as your personal photographer.” The little mount is controlled by the camera and will tilt and zoom, seeking out any people in the room using the face detection in the camera.

Once it has locked on to its target, a deadly laser shoots out and, wait, no. Once on target it waits until it sees a big grin before tripping the shutter. It only works with the Cybershots TX1 and WX1, two otherwise humdrum but capable cameras announced yesterday by Sony.

This is a rather nice idea. Usually, party photos suck. They are blurred, the flash turns everybody into a chalk-faced ghost and everyone feels like they need to fix a rictus gash of teeth across their squint-eyed faces. This little gizmo would sit quietly on a table and, forgotten by the guests, silently pick out shots like some kind of robotic Cartier Bresson sniper.

I’m interested to see how well it does. Sony says that the robot ev

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Wired

Apple is the exclusive gatekeeper to its iPhone App Store, able to reject apps at will — as it did July 28 with Google Voice. But some developers aren’t taking the rejection lying down: They’re turning instead to an unauthorized app store called Cydia, where forbidden wares continue to exist — and even earn developers some money.


That store is operated by Jay Freeman, more fondly known in the iPhone “Jailbreak” community as Saurik. Only five months old, his app store Cydia specializes in selling apps that Apple would reject or ban (or already has). To use Cydia or the apps available through it, customers need to jailbreak their phones — hack them to work around Apple-imposed restrictions — a process that Apple claims is illegal.

 

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Technology Review

A startup company in Jessup, MD, hopes later this year to bring to market one of the first products based on the nanomaterial graphene. Vorbeck Materials is making conductive inks based on graphene that can be used to print RFID antennas and electrical contacts for flexible displays. The company, which is banking on the low cost of the graphene inks, has an agreement with the German chemical giant BASF and last month received $5.1 million in financing from private-investment firm Stoneham Partners.

Since it was first created in the lab in 2004, graphene has been hailed as a wonder material: the two-dimensional sheets of carbon atoms are the strongest material ever tested, and graphene's electrical properties make it a potential replacement for silicon in faster computer chips. Synthesizing pristine graphene of the quality needed to make transistors, though, remains a painstaking process that, as yet, can't be done on an industrial scale, though researchers are w

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Technology Review

The annual meeting of the ACM's Special Interest Group on Graphics and Interactive Techniques, SIGGRAPH 2009, takes place in New Orleans this week. The event brings together some of the world's best digital artists and computer researchers and is a showcase for some interesting new interfaces.

Here are five particularly cool ideas that will be on display at this year's event.

 

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