Roland’s Sunday Smart Trends #240
November 16th, 2008

Obama’s social networking was the real revolution

Like a lot of Web innovators, the Obama campaign did not invent anything completely new. Instead, by bolting together social-networking applications under the banner of a movement, they created an unforeseen force to raise money, organize locally, fight smear campaigns and get out the vote that helped them topple the Clinton machine and then the Republicans. As a result, when he arrives at the White House, Obama will have not just a political base, but a database, millions of names of supporters who can be engaged almost instantly. And there’s every reason to believe that he will use the network not just to campaign, but to govern.
Source: David Carr, The New York Times, November 10, 2008

MP3 player headphones may hinder pacemakers

Headphones used with MP3 digital music players like the iPod may interfere with heart pacemakers and implantable defibrillators, U.S. researchers said on Sunday. The MP3 players themselves posed no threat to pacemakers and defibrillators, used to normalize heart rhythm. But strong little magnets inside the headphones can foul up the devices if placed within 1.2 inches of them.
Source: Will Dunham, Reuters, November 9, 2008

Social Media Leads the Future of Technology

Internet-connected televisions, social media, and the power of simplicity were all cited as launch pads for future innovation in technology, according to a panel of experts that convened at Harvard Business School as part of the HBS Centennial Business Summit in October. And though advertisers love the Internet, to what extent they can capitalize on these transformations remains an open question.
Source: Martha Lagace, Harvard Business School Working Knowledge, November 10, 2008

Text messaging may help children fight off obesity

A new study from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill suggests that cell phone text messaging could be used to reduce children’s chances of becoming overweight or obese later in life, by helping them monitor and modify their own behaviors now.
Source: University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill news release, November 11, 2008

The Next Step in Health Care: Telemedicine

Imagine a scenario where doctors from different hospitals can collaborate on a surgery without having to actually be in the operating room. What if doctors in remote locations could receive immediate expert support from top specialists in hospitals around the world? This environment could soon become a reality thanks to research by a multi-university partnership that is testing the live broadcast of surgeries using the advanced networking consortium Internet2.
Source: Rochester Institute of Technology news release, November 12, 2008

Search Engine With Roots in Genomics Unlocks Deep Web

A research-focused search engine founded by Human Genome Project scientists is claiming to go where even Google doesn’t tread: the deep web. DeepDyve is designed to search the 99 percent (they say, citing a study from UC Berkeley) of hits not picked up by other search engines, which return pages based largely on interpretations of popularity and work only if a page is findable. Content hidden behind paywalls or that is not linked to enough sites to gain page rank remains obscure, but often contains the source material required for serious research.
Source: Chris Snyder, Wired News, November 11, 2008

The Coming Wireless Revolution

If you believe some radio researchers and engineers, within the next couple of years, high-bandwidth, far-reaching wireless Internet signals will soon blanket the nation. Thanks to a decision by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) last week, megahertz frequency bands that were previously allocated to television broadcasters will be opened to other device manufacturers. The frequency liberation means that future wireless gadgets will be able to blast tens of megabits per second of data over hundreds of kilometers.
Source: Kate Greene, Technology Review, November 14, 2008

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