Roland’s Sunday Smart Trends #217
June 1st, 2008

Bookmark this: California taxes

The average California household pays more than $10,000 in federal income tax each year. Want to know how your money’s spent?, a 6-month-old website from the U.S. Office of Management and Budget, gives a partial answer, detailing federal spending on contracts and grants.
Source: Scott J. Wilson, The Los Angeles Times, May 26, 2008

Off the bench, judge blogs her mind

For those who think the typical blogger is a twenty-something tapping on a laptop while wearing pajamas and listening to Death Cab for Cutie through earbuds, a Brookline woman who blogs on legal affairs for Slate magazine is an anomaly. […] She typically composes her blogs in her work attire — a business suit or a dress. And she’s a federal judge. “I am an unlikely blogger,” wrote US District Court Judge Nancy Gertner of Boston in March in her introductory submission to “Convictions,” Slate’s new blog on legal issues.
Source: Jonathan Saltzman, The Boston Globe, May 27, 2008

Telstra’s 3D hologram party trick

Forget conference calls or video crosses – beaming your hologram interstate for a live chat is closer to becoming a reality. In what Telstra says is a national first, the telco today beamed a mobile three dimensional image of its chief technology officer, Hugh Bradlow, from Melbourne to Adelaide to give a live business presentation.
Source: AAP, via Sydney Morning Herald, Australia, May 27, 2008

Large-scale community protein annotation — WikiProteins

Today sees the launch of a new collaborative website initially focusing on proteins and their role in biology and medicine. The WikiProfessional technology underlying the site has been developed based upon the collaborative Wikipedia approach. Described in BioMed Central’s open access journal Genome Biology, WikiProteins provides a method for community annotation on a huge scale.
Source: BioMed Central news release, May 27, 2008

Yale computer scientists devise a ‘P4P’ system for efficient Internet usage

A Yale research team has engineered a system with the potential for making the Internet work more efficiently, in which Internet Service Providers (ISPs) and Peer-to-Peer (P2P) software providers can work cooperatively to deliver data. [The team is] proposing an architecture called P4P — which stands for “provider portal for P2P applications” — to allow explicit and seamless communications between ISPs and P2P applications.
Source: Yale University news release, May 27, 2008

Method uses ‘Bluetooth’ to track travel time for vehicles, pedestrians

Engineers have created a method that uses pervasive Bluetooth signals from cell phones and other wireless devices to constantly update how long it takes vehicles and pedestrians to travel from one point to another.
Source: Purdue University News, May 27, 2008

Computer model knows what you’re thinking

A computer model has been developed that can predict what word you are thinking of. The model may help to resolve questions about how the brain processes words and language, and might even lead to techniques for decoding people’s thoughts.
[For more information, here is a link to a Carnegie Mellon University news release which provides additional details.
Source: Kerri Smith, Nature News, May 29, 2008

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