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Showing posts from February 9, 2011

NASA to reveal first views of the entire Sun

NASA’s two Solar Terrestrial Relations Observatory (STEREO) spacecraft, which are going to capture the Sun, are on diametrically opposite sides of the Sun, 180 degrees apart.
For the first time, NASA is all set to release of the first complete view of the Sun’s entire surface and atmosphere on at 11 a.m. EST on Sunday, Feb 6.
The views will enable significant advances in space weather forecasting for Earth, and improve planning for future robotic or crewed spacecraft missions throughout the solar system.
NASA’s two Solar Terrestrial Relations Observatory (STEREO) spacecraft, which are going to capture the Sun, are on diametrically opposite sides of the Sun, 180 degrees apart.
Designed by The Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory in Laurel, in 2009, STEREO revealed the 3-D structure of coronal mass ejections, which are violent eruptions of matter from the Sun that can disrupt communications, navigation, satellites and power grids on Earth.
The STEREO imaging and…

Massive archaeological trove found via Google Earth

An Australian archaeologist claims to have identified nearly 2,000 potentially important sites in Saudi Arabia using Google Earth.
David Kennedy, a professor of classics and ancient history at the University of Western Australia, says with the help of satellite images from Google Earth he has pinpointed 1,977 archaeological sites, including 1,082 teardrop shaped stone tombs in the Arab country.
“I’ve never been to Saudi Arabia. It’s not the easiest country to break into,” New Scientist magazine quoted Dr Kennedy as saying.
Instead, Dr Kennedy said, he scanned about 1240 square kilometres in Saudi Arabia using Google Earth. From their birds-eye view he found 1,977 potential archaeological sites, including 1,082 “pendants” — ancient tear-drop shaped tombs made of stone.
According to Kennedy, aerial photography of Saudi Arabia is not made available to most archaeologists, and it’s difficult, if not impossible, to fly over the nation.
“But, Google Earth can outflank them,” he said…

Indian-U.S. family working to connect classrooms globally

Washington: An ambitious global project to bridge the "achievement gap" among students has been launched by an Indian-American family here by connecting schools in India with those in the U.S. using Internet, new methodologies and cutting-edge technologies.

The aim of the initiative is to help students learn not only about culture of other countries, but also find solutions to complex math equations and science problemsA brainchild of mother-daughter duo of Sonia Boveja and Naina, Co-Founders of Washington-based Coalition for International Initiatives (CII), the pilot project launched recently connects eight American schools in Pennsylvania with three Indian schools in Gwalior, Ahmedabad and Ludhiana.

"We want to promote cultural awareness, global citizenship and academic excellence. So we want the students to share with each other academic things, their sports and their history.

Technologists honoured for innovative solutions

New Delhi: Technologists from leading IT companies including Infosys, Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) and Nokia Siemens Networks were Saturday feted for bringing out innovative solution to address the challenges that India faces.

The solutions included an advisory application for farmers for crop protection, internet-based education delivery system for schools, smart power management, rural healthcare, traffic management, clean drinking water and communication tool for hearing impaired, a statement said here.Organised by Technology Review magazine and global chemicals group DuPont, the awards' jury included a 12-member team of technologists, researchers and technology promoters.

While Infosys Technologies came up with a smart chip that can identify energy wastage and can be plugged to all power-hungry devices, TCS innovated a low-cost water purifier using a matrix of pebble and rice husk ash to help rural India with clean, potable water.

Nokia Siemens, on the other ha…

A tool to cut clutter

Thirty-forty per cent of the mail in your inbox will be of no use, and you may realise this while cleaning it up one fine day. If clutter bothers you, here is an option.

TaskTrek is the tool for you. All messages are grouped into relatable activities and tasks chronologically, thus helping all communication flow in an organised manner automatically. Instead of the ‘send' button, all you have is ‘share.'

“TaskTrek's an alternative to e-mail,” says Dheeraj Juneja, founder and chief executive officer, Loginworks Softwares (www.loginworks.com). His company has designed this hosted service for internal team communication.

It is not just for mailing or messaging, but can also be used for managing resources, teams, documents and office within an organisation, clients and other stakeholders.

Once a company subscribes to this service, Loginworks Software will create an account for it and share its login details. The user types in the URL customised for the company (eg. …

Cosmos 250 times bigger than visible universe!

Just how big is the universe is a question that has baffled cosmologists for decades. But now scientists have reasons to believe that it is at least 250 times bigger than the visible universe.
Researchers at Oxford University and Imperial College, London, focused on measuring the curvature of the universe.
Should it be flat or open, then the universe must be infinite, but if it is closed like a sphere, then it has to be of a limited size.
Researcher Mihran Vardanyan and his team have come up with a new complex method of analysing all previous research they call the Bayesian method, the Daily Mail reports.
A main source of data they used was measuring the size of waves in the early universe that became frozen in the cosmic microwave background — or baryonic acoustic oscillations — using telescopes in space.
They found that the most likely model is a tightly constrained curvature of the universe — which means it’s flat.
It’s also at least 250 times bigger than the ‘Hubble volume’, whic…

Honeycomb promises to hot up tablet PC race

Earlier this week, Google unveiled its Android 3.0 operating system code-named ‘Honeycomb.' It has since received positive buzz across online geek forums for what many see as the open source operating system that will help Android Tablet PCs challenge Apple's iPad, the undisputed market leader now, which runs on its proprietary operating system.
Technology writers, who were invited to the Google headquarters at Mountain View, California, on February 2, were among the first to get an in-depth view of Android's Honeycomb eco-system. It has come across as operating system built from scratch with the new form factor of tablet PCs in mind. Most of the widely followed technology blogs have already given it their thumbs-up.
The first of the tablet PCs sporting Honeycomb, Motorola's Xoom, is expected to hit the retail markets soon.
Huge leap
The predominant verdict is that not only has Honeycomb been a huge leap over the previous versions of Android OS, which, to be fai…

FIFA to test 10 goal-line technology systems

Ten different goal-line technology systems will compete to persuade FIFA’s rules-making panel that referees need high-tech help to make decisions.

FIFA said Friday that the 10 systems, which it did not identify, will be tested privately at its headquarters next week by researchers from a Zurich-based technology institute.

“A report will be presented to the IFAB (International Football Association Board) following an independently monitored testing phase of 10 companies and their respective technology systems,” FIFA said in a statement.

The subject will top the agenda when IFAB -- comprising FIFA and the four British federations -- meets March 5 in Wales for its annual review of football’s laws.

IFAB also will consider letting UEFA use the five-referee match official system at the 2012 European Championship.

Other proposed rules changes relate to stray objects on the field, players wearing snoods and tights, plus referees using vanishing spray to mark where defensive walls…

Google’s new art project offers HD museum tours

Google has come up with the next best thing to visiting the world’s greatest museums — high-definition virtual art tours that use powerful cameras to zoom into some of the most famous masterpieces in history.

The Google Art Project was announced Tuesday and uses technology adapted from the company’s Street View feature to allow web browsers to wander the halls of 17 leading museums around the world.

The most prominent works on show, numbering about 1,000 in all, can be viewed in ultra-high definition, allowing users to zoom in to see the smallest of brush strokes and cracks in the canvas. Each picture is accompanied by explanatory text.

The institutions on show include the Metropolitan Museum of Art and MoMA in New York, the State Hermitage Museum in St Petersburg, Tate Britain and the National Gallery in London, Museo Reina Sofia in Madrid, the Uffizi Gallery in Florence and the Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam. Among the works available for ultra close-up viewing are Bot…

Six small planets orbiting a star found

Nasa Kepler mission has discovered a remarkable planetary system which has six planets around a Sun-like star, including five small planets in tightly packed orbits. Astronomers at the University of California, Santa Cruz, and their coauthors analyzed the orbital dynamics of the system, determined the sizes and masses of the planets, and figured out their likely compositions — all based on Kepler's measurements of the changing brightness of the host star (called Kepler-11) as the planets passed in front of it.

“Not only is this an amazing planetary system, it also validates a powerful new method to measure the masses of planets,” said Daniel Fabrycky, a Hubble postdoctoral fellow at UC Santa Cruz, who led the orbital dynamics analysis. Fabrycky and Jack Lissauer, a scientist at NASA Ames Research Center in Mountain View, are the lead authors of a paper on Kepler-11 published today (February 3) in Nature. The five inner planets in the Kepler-11 system range in size fro…

Say hello to 3G

  The first of the private telecom-run 3G networks rolled out last week in Chennai and Bangalore, and more players are set to join the fray. Before making a shift, it would be good to find out whether you really need to, writes Karthik Subramanian

The third-generation (3G) mobile networks are vying with one another to grab eyeballs everywhere. Private telecom players have already started splashing advertisements and the buzz is set to get bigger in the days to come.

Bangalore and Chennai were among the first south Indian cities to experience the rollout from Airtel last week, and more players and cities are likely to jump on the bandwagon. The state-owned BSNL (Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited) has been offering 3G network services — both on pre-paid and post-paid plans — for quite a while now; but this has not been as widely advertised.

So is it time to make the shift? Also, does one have what is required for such a change?

For starters, one must have a 3G-compliant handset …

Bullet-proof vest

Using indigenous technology it has become possible to develop lightweight composite bullet-proof jackets and helmets that provide exceptional battlefield protection.

At the same time, the unique design features facilitate body and head movement while aiming, crawling and running. The bullet-proof jackets and helmets provide protection against ammunition.

In bullet-proof jackets specific layers of biaxial woven kevlar fabric have been stitched in diamond pattern. The trauma pack is an integral part of the ballistic insert. The assembly is stitched in water/moisture-resistant black plastic to maintain its ballistic properties. This effectively stops even a 9 mm bullet.

The jacket can stop a 7.62 mm bullet if the jacket has a laminated ceramic plate inserted to its front and back.

The outer cover is made of washable 100 per cent cotton camouflage twill. Advantages of using kevlar fabric are: high tensile strength/modules, high toughness, light weight, excellent retention of stren…

Samsung does a double take!

The Samsung ST-550 was a revolutionary point and shoot with its dual-view LCDs, which made shooting self portraits really easy. Recently, Samsung launched two further models in the ST series, the ST600 and ST100. We get the ST600 on our test bench to find out whether it's worth the upgrade.

Look and feel

For those of you familiar with the ST550, you'll immediately notice the change in the size of the front LCD, which has been upgraded from 1.5-inches to a more convenient 1.8-inches. The front LCD can be activated either by pressing the dedicated button on top of the camera, or by tapping it when the camera is turned on. We had to tap the screen a few times to get it to turn on though.

The rear LCD is a large 3.5-inch display, and is touch enabled – which accounts for its size. There are no physical controls on the rear. The play button is located on the outer right hand corner, which is actually really convenient.

The lens is a 27mm wide angle Schneider Kreuznach,…

New Technique Boosts High-Power Potential for Gallium Nitride Electronics

Gallium nitride (GaN) material holds promise for emerging high-power devices that are more energy efficient than existing technologies -- but these GaN devices traditionally break down when exposed to high voltages. Now researchers at North Carolina State University have solved the problem, introducing a buffer that allows the GaN devices to handle 10 times greater power.For future renewable technologies, such as the smart grid or electric cars, we need high-power semiconductor devices," says Merve Ozbek, a Ph.D. student at NC State and author of a paper describing the research. "And power-handling capacity is important for the development of those devices."

Previous research into developing high power GaN devices ran into obstacles, because large electric fields were created at specific points on the devices' edge when high voltages were applied -- effectively destroying the devices. NC State researchers have addressed the problem by implanting a buff…

Internet Addresses: An Inevitable Shortage, but an Uneven One

As Internet authorities prepare to announce that they have handed over all of the available addresses, a USC research group that monitors address usage has completed the latest in its series of Internet censuses.There is some good news, according to computer scientist John Heideman, who heads a team at the USC Viterbi School of Engineering Information Sciences Institute that has just released its results in the form of a detailed outline, including a 10-minute video and an interactive web browser that allows users to explore the nooks and crannies of Internet space themselvesHeidemann who is a senior project leader at ISI and a research associate professor in the USC Viterbi School of Engineering Department of Computer Science, says his group has found that while some of the already allocated address blocks (units of Internet real estate, ranging from 256 to more than 16 million addresses) are heavily used, many are still sparsely used. "Even allowing for undercount…

European Space Agency Investigates Novel Analogue Self-Steered Antennas

Bulky present generation satellite dishes and ground terminals could become relics of the past thanks to research currently being conducted for the European Space Agency (ESA) by Queen's University Belfast's Institute of Electronics, Communications and Information Technology (ECIT) aimed at developing discrete self-aligning flat antennas.It is hoped the work could lead to a one-size-fits all solution that could be optimised for a variety of technologies presently used to deliver satellite broadband and television to travellers as well as customers in broadband 'not spots'.

ECIT is currently working on an 18 month ESA project with the aim of developing a completely self-contained solid-state self-steering antenna that is much lighter and less power hungry than current alternatives.

The team being led by Professor Vincent Fusco plan to complete work on a 1.6GHz demonstrator -- capable of providing transfer rates of 0.5Mbits/s -- with a power requirement of …

Motorola launches smartphone Defy at Rs 18,990

Handset maker Motorola Mobility India today announced the launch of its Android—based 3G smartphone ‘Defy’ priced at Rs 18,990.

“With all the features consumers expect in a smartphone, Defy packs advanced web browsing, entertainment and messaging capabilities as well as a design that withstands the challenges of everyday life,” Motorola Mobility India Country Head Faisal Siddiqui said in a statement.

The 3G—enabled Android handset is equipped with 3.7—inch touch screen, 5 MP camera, and expandable memory up to 32 GB.

Android is a mobile operating system, initially developed by Google and later by the Open Handset Alliance, a consortium of 47 hardware, software and telecom companies.

Being an open—source operating system, Android allows developers to design applications like games, music players and location—based services, independent of the handset type.

“Motorola Defy is dust proof and water resistant, which protects you from life’s little challenges like a sudden rain sh…

AeroIndia show to be the largest ever

New Delhi: India's air show in Bangalore next week will be the largest ever with 29 countries bringing their aerospace products, including fighter jets and transport aircraft, for showcasing at the five-day event.

The biennial AeroIndia-2011 will for the first time witness the civil aviation sector overtaking military aviation. The air show will see 54 percent of the aircraft, helicopters and aerospace systems from the civilian sector compared to 46 percent from the military sector. "This year's air show will surpass all previous figures in terms of participating countries, companies, space and business. All inputs show a healthy growth than the previous edition of AeroIndia. Civil aviation sector at 54 percent will overtake military aviation content at 46 percent in this year's show," Defence Production Secretary Raj Kumar Singh told reporters here Tuesday.

To be held at the Yelahanka air force station, this year's show has been oversubscribed…

Google voice-tweeting service for Egyptians

Bangalore: Google with its new voice tweeting service is helping Egyptians to communicate with the people around the world. Google, which has recently purchased SayNow Social Voice Platform, has come up with 'Speak-to tweet-service' for them.

Through this service, people can tweet just by using a voice connection. They can leave messages on any one of the given international numbers (+16504194196 or +390662207294 or +97316199855). Immediately the service will tweet the message by using hashtag #egypt, according to Google in a blog posting. This service automatically puts the voice message on a web page which in turn gets linked to twitter message and gets posted to Google's "speak2tweet" twitter account.The service doesn't require any internet connection. Egyptians have no access to internet service or twitter as all the ISPs (Internet service providers) have been ordered to disconnect from the internet. Even, the Noor Group, one of the largest …

Internet runs out of addresses as devices grow

  The spread of Internet use in Asia and the proliferation of Internet-connected phones worldwide are causing the Internet to run out of numerical addresses, which act as “phone numbers” to ensure that surfers reach websites and e-mails find their destination.

The top-level authority that governs such addresses will distribute the last batches on Thursday, two people with knowledge of the situation told AP. They spoke on condition of anonymity because a formal announcement wasn’t planned until Thursday.

That doesn’t mean consumers will suddenly find websites unreachable, though. And if everything goes according to plan, Internet users won’t even notice.

“It will just be ‘business as usual’ if everyone gets their job done,” said John Curran, CEO of the American Registry for Internet Numbers, or ARIN, one of five regional groups that dole out such addresses. ARIN covers the U.S., Canada and the Caribbean.

The Internet Assigned Numbers Authority, the top-level administrator…

LHC study brings scientists a step closer to dark matter discovery

Physicists have carried out the first full run of experiments that smash protons together at almost the speed of light, bringing them a step closer towards the discovery of dark matter.

Dark matter is an invisible substance that we cannot detect directly but whose presence is inferred from the rotation of galaxies.

Researchers said the experiment would help them either confirm or rule out one of the primary theories that could solve many of the outstanding questions of particle physics, known as Supersymmetry (SUSY).

“We have made an important step forward in the hunt for dark matter, although no discovery has yet been made,” said Professor Geoff Hall from the Department of Physics at Imperial College London, who works on the CMS experiment.

"These results have come faster than we expected because the LHC and CMS ran better last year than we dared hope and we are now very optimistic about the prospects of pinning down Supersymmetry in the next few years.” The light…

Study sheds light on asteroid deflection strategy to avert collision

A new study from New York City College of Technology sheds light on how a deflection strategy would work best in order to avoid collision with giant space objects such as asteroids.

“A collision with an object of this size travelling at an estimated 30,000 to 40,000 mile per hour would be catastrophic,” said NASA researcher and New York City College of Technology (City Tech) Associate Professor of Physics Gregory L. Matloff.

His advice is to “either destroy the object or alter its trajectory.” In 2029 and 2036, the asteroid Apophis (named after the Egyptian god of darkness and the void), at least 1,100 feet in diameter, 90 stories tall, and weighing an estimated 25 million tons, will make two close passes by Earth at a distance of about 22,600 miles.

According to the researcher, diverting objects such as these is a better option than exploding them as the debris itself could bathe Earth in a radioactive shower.

His study indicates that an asteroid could be diverted by hea…

AMD introduces Fusion platform

It is designed to handle multi-core processors and high-end graphics

Computer processor manufacturer AMD announced on Tuesday the launch of its new generation of processors, the Fusion platform.

The new family of chipsets, using the accelerated processing unit (APU), are designed to handle multi-core processors as well as high-end graphics using a single die. Ravi Swaminathan, Managing Director and Regional Vice-President, Sales and Marketing, AMD India, said the new chipset design promise to herald a “fundamental transformation, in the computer landscape.” “The new family of processors represent the biggest shift in PC technology in 40 years,” Mr. Swaminathan said.

Claiming that AMD was the only chip-maker to have established capabilities in designing and manufacturing central processing units as well as graphics processing units, Mr. Swaminathan said, “The APU will set the new industry standard.” He said the capabilities of the new range of processors make them ideal fo…

Technology helps blind man create driving history

A blind man in the U.S. is said to have created history by driving a car around a race track in a test, which could one day lead to all visually impaired people taking to the roads, a media report said.

Mark Riccobono, 34, successfully navigated his way round the Daytona International Speedway in Florida, overtaking a van and dodging some cardboard boxes thrown in his way, the Daily Mail online reported.

His SUV was fitted with laser sensors that passed data to his hands and sent vibrating signals telling him how much to turn. The cushion on his seat was also wired into the same system and vibrated telling him to brake or accelerate.

The car was modified by students from Virginia Tech University with a “non-visual interface for a car that can convey real-time information about driving conditions to the blind.”

The test was the culmination of a decade-long project to build a car that could allow blind people to one day drive on normal streets like those without any visual…

Recognition for CDC Software

 Recognition:Bangalore-based firm, CDC Software Corporation, a hybrid enterprise software provider of on-premise and cloud deployments, has been recognised as a leader in ‘The Forrester Wave: CRM Suites Customer Service Solutions' Forrester Research Inc., dated July 19, 2010, according to a press release by the firm.

In the report, Forrester evaluated 19 CRM suite customer service solutions. CDC Software was among a total of seven vendors recognised as “Leaders: A variety of solutions to fit different needs.” According to the Forrester report, CDC Software delivers a “user-friendly, flexible and cost-effective solution with Pivotal CRM”. It leverages Microsoft technology to offer a solution that is highly flexible and adaptable to complex use cases.

The Forrester report states that Pivotal CRM “offers native support for rich Internet application frameworks such as Ajax and Microsoft Silverlight to provide a better UI than can traditionally be accomplished through Inte…

First HDR video system shows all the light and shade

Glaring, overlit faces and blacked-out night-time backgrounds have ruined photographs, film and video ever since they were invented. Why can't cameras just record things the way our eyes see them? Now a video system based on new data-crunching techniques means they can. New Scientist explores what it will mean for the picture on your TV screen.The dynamic range of an image is the difference in brightness between the lightest and darkest areas of the scene. Our eyes can handle a much wider range of brightnesses than conventional cameras and can adjust to sudden changes in light much more quickly. That's why cameras often give under- or over-exposed images of scenes that were perfectly clear to the naked eye. HDR cameras get around this problem by taking a number of pictures at different exposures and combine them to give a more realistic depiction of a scene.

"HDR is what we see every day of our lives," explains Alan Chalmers at the University of Warwick,…

New Transistors: An Alternative to Silicon and Better Than Graphene

Smaller and more energy-efficient electronic chips could be made using molybdenite. In an article appearing online January 30 in the journal Nature Nanotechnology, EPFL's Laboratory of Nanoscale Electronics and Structures (LANES) publishes a study showing that this material has distinct advantages over traditional silicon or graphene for use in electronics applications.A discovery made at EPFL could play an important role in electronics, allowing us to make transistors that are smaller and more energy efficient. Research carried out in the Laboratory of Nanoscale Electronics and Structures (LANES) has revealed that molybdenite, or MoS2, is a very effective semiconductor. This mineral, which is abundant in nature, is often used as an element in steel alloys or as an additive in lubricants. But it had not yet been extensively studied for use in electronics.

100,000 times less energy"It's a two-dimensional material, very thin and easy to use in nanotechnology.…

Physicists challenge classical world with quantum-mechanical implementation of 'shell game

Inspired by the popular confidence trick known as "shell game," researchers at UC Santa Barbara have demonstrated the ability to hide and shuffle "quantum-mechanical peas" –– microwave single photons –– under and between three microwave resonators, or "quantized shells."In a paper published in the Jan. 30 issue of the journal Nature Physics, UCSB researchers show the first demonstration of the coherent control of a multi-resonator architecture. This topic has been a holy grail among physicists studying photons at the quantum-mechanical level for more than a decade.

The UCSB researchers are Matteo Mariantoni, postdoctoral fellow in the Department of Physics; Haohua Wang, postdoctoral fellow in physics; John Martinis, professor of physics; and Andrew Cleland, professor of physics.

According to the paper, the "shell man," the researcher, makes use of two superconducting quantum bits (qubits) to move the photons –– particles of light …

Fulcrum and Liferay is to expand liferay practice together

New Jersey: Fulcrum, the global IT services provider and portal solutions to the fortune, has announced that they have entered into silver level partnership with open source portal technology, Liferay.
Now Fulcrum will have access to Liferay's Customer & Partner Portal ecosystem. It will provide an access to the materials and training that Fulcrum need to effectively sell, develop, and deliver business solutions using Liferay software.Rajesh Sinha CEO of Falcrum said that Liferay has become the leading independent and open source platform for building new applications to solve business problems in many industries and it also provides features which are the combination of an extensible, feature-rich platform and business-friendly.
This partnership enables Fulcrum to significantly extend its service offerings in the open source market.....

How Egypt is getting onliner

Egypt remains officially offline following the government's mass internet disconnection last week, but savvy citizens assisted by groups of online activists are still using a number of methods to access the web.

On Thursday night the Egyptian government instructed the country's ISPs to cut off their connections to the outside world. Only one network, the Noor Group, remained online - it's suspected Noor was spared because it runs services for the Egyptian stock exchange.

Egyptians can still access the internet through Noor, but as a small ISP it has limited capacity. It's also highly likely that any unencrypted data sent via Noor is being monitored by the government, so Egyptians are turning to the anonymising system Tor to protect themselves. Tor hides your IP address by bouncing data requests around the computers of three other randomly selected users, making it impossible to trace internet activity back to its source. Downloads of the software have &q…

Apple to begin production, iPad 2 in Feb, iPhone 5 in May

Bangalore: The production of Apple iPad 2 is expected to start by February according to reports in Chinese media. Also, the production of fifth generation of iPhones is likely to begin by May.
The new model of iPad is likely to come with features like dual-core processor, dual cameras and a USB and an SD port. Some reports have claimed that the new iPad will come with a resolution of 2048 x 1536. However, according to some, the said resolution is more likely for iPad 3Apple's manufacturing partners are set to begin production in a small pilot. However, there are chances of it growing extensively.
Many are also anticipating the number to surpass first generation of iPads which were delivered in the year of 2010. Reports say that Apple will most likely continue with Foxconn as its main production partner. The supply chain is also likely to remain same with Companies like Pegatron playing a crucial part through the process. Though there is no information available on iPhones,…

Metamaterials Approach Makes Better Satellite Antennas

  lighter and more energy-efficient broadband devices on communications satellites may be possible using metamaterials to modify horn antennas, according to engineers from Penn State and Lockheed Martin Corp."Existing horn antennas have adequate performance, but have undergone little change over several decades except for advances in more accurate modeling techniques," said Erik Lier, technical Fellow, Lockheed Martin Space Systems Co. "Modifications enabled by metamaterials can either enhance performance, or they can lower the mass and thus lower the cost of putting the antenna in space."

Lighter antennas cost less to boost into space and more energy-efficient antennas can reduce the size of storage batteries and solar cells, which also reduces the mass.

Metamaterials derive their unusual properties from structure rather than composition and possess exotic properties not usually found in nature.

"Working with Penn State, we decided that the first …

Apps to your aid

On January 6, Apple cut the ribbon on its new online Mac-App Store operating from Cupertino, California. With upgrades available for Apple's Mac OS X Snow Leopard software, and to move to version 10.6.6 from 10.6.3, you can check out a free Twitter app, a paid-for “Angry Birds” game and Apple's own iWork software. The “i” devices maker says more than a million free and paid apps have already been downloaded from the site.

That's “i” news. Millions of other apps — some probably being tested right now — are freeloaded and bought for smartphones in every corner of the globe. A Weight Watchers app weighs what you eat; a Mint app helps you stick to a budget; Yoga RELAX tries to de-stress you; GetFitMap and Runkeeper track your exercise programme. News channels put out their own special apps. The Telegraph reports that a Penguin's ‘Baby Touch Peekaboo App', out in London is “designed” to enhance the hearing, visual and motor skills of three-month-olds. Baby…