Category: Inventions and Innovations


The controversial V-22 Osprey, the Marine Corps’ hybrid helicopter/airplane just got its first taste of combat… and performed well.

The fax machine is one technology that is past its time, but refuses to die.  Some people like the convenience of the fax, while others perceive a fax to be more secure than e-mail.  Doctors’ offices rely on fax and refuse to use e-mail because of the security concerns.

After hoping to be rid of faxes forever, I came to the realization that they’re here for the foreseeable future.  I signed up for HelloFax and have been quite satisfied with the customer service and the convenience of it thus far.  I was able to get a fax number in the 646 area code, and it integrates well with Dropbox.  It also lets you easily add a saved signature to a document without printing it out, signing it, and then scanning it before sending it.  Thumbs up from me.

Because you needed to find a use for those old 3.5″ floppies.

Nokia finally officially releases the N9, which is to be the first, last, and only MeeGo phone.  “The N9 features an interesting UI that’s controlled with a simple swipe. The buttonless smartphone features three home views (Applications, Events and Live Applications) that are designed to enable people to easily and swiftly navigate the interface.”  Unfortunately it looks like MeeGo is doomed.

Vodpod videos no longer available.

NYC has embedded sensors throughout the streets of midtown in order to monitor and control the flow of traffic.

Cufflinks designed to mimic the pulsating glow of a Mac “breathing” in sleep mode.

The iCufflinks are available here for $128.00.  The Open Source hardware design and source code available here.

There’s a market in Israel for “Kosher” cell phones, which purposefully lack features like text messaging, etc., among the haredi / ultra-Orthodox communities.  (See, e.g., this for details)

However, the IDF and others are trying to ensure that these phones can receive emergency messages.  They want to be sure that these messages, and only these messages get through.

(Oh, and it doesn’t mention whether or not these Kosher phones turn themselves off or refuse phone calls on the Sabbath.  I’d be interested to know that.)

Om Malik has an excellent post on why Kickstarter works (the comments are also worth reading).  He quotes Craig Mod because this really does say it all:

With Kickstarter, people are preordering your idea. Sure, they’re buying something tangible — a CD, a movie, a book, etc — but more than that, they’re pledging money because they believe in you, the creator. If you take the time to extrapolate beyond the obvious low-hanging goals, you can use this money to push the idea — the project — somewhere farther reaching than initially envisaged. And all without giving up any ownership of the idea. This — micro-seed capital without relinquishment of ownership — is where the latent potential of Kickstarter funding lies.

Billionaire Felix Dennis wrote, “ownership isn’t the important thing, it’s the only thing.”  Kickstarter allows creative talents to get seed capital without giving up equity.

Could Google’s ChromeOS be its push into the enterprise?  Carlo Daffara’s analysis indicates as such.  Chrome is well positioned to be a “thinner client” operating system.

Unlike traditional computers, much of the data and computing is done on Google’s servers, but unlike thin clients, “ChromeOS is designed to execute web applications, where the computational cost of the presentation and interaction layer is on the client; this means that the cost per user for providing the service is one order of magnitude lower than bitmap-based remotization approaches.”

A practical, comparatively inexpensive client with minimal maintenance costs would appeal to the enterprise customer.

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