Category Archives: Invention

Cute invention


The strong keys holder

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The beautiful sugar

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DARPA brain implant project targets memory loss


http://m.lifehealthpro.com/2014/02/07/darpa-brain-implant-project-targets-memory-loss

BY KATHLEEN MILLER | FEBRUARY 7, 2014(Bloomberg) —

The Pentagon is exploring the development of implantable probes that may one day help reverse some memory loss caused by brain injury.The goal of the project, still in early stages, is to treat some of the more than 280,000 troops who have suffered brain injuries since 2000, including in combat in Iraq and Afghanistan.The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) is focused on wounded veterans, although some research may benefit others such as seniors with dementia or athletes with brain injuries, said Geoff Ling, a physician and deputy director of DARPA’s Defense Sciences office.It’s still far from certain that such work will result in an anti-memory-loss device. Still, word of the project is creating excitement after more than a decade of failed attempts to develop drugs to treat brain injury and memory loss.“The way human memory works is one of the great unsolved mysteries,” said Andres Lozano, chairman of neurosurgery at the University of Toronto. “This has tremendous value from a basic science aspect. It may have huge implications for patients with disorders affecting memory, including those with dementia and Alzheimer’s disease.”At least 1.7 million people in the U.S. are diagnosed with memory loss each year, costing the nation’s economy more than $76 billion annually, according to the most recent federal health data. The Department of Veterans Affairs estimates it will spend $4.2 billion to care for former troops with brain injuries between fiscal 2013 and 2022.Brain stimulationMedtronic Inc. already sells implants used in deep brain stimulation treatment to reduce some symptoms of Parkinson’s disease and other neurological conditions. Now, DARPA officials hope to build on neuroengineering advances, such as one that helped people with limited motor functions communicate with a device, according to agency documents posted online.The Pentagon has sought research proposals from companies and organizations, asking for ideas on stimulating brain tissue to help restore memory. If the research pans out, it may attract interest from companies including General Electric Co. and International Business Machines Corp. as well as Medtronic, said Art Caplan, medical ethics director at New York University’s Langone Medical Center and an occasional DARPA adviser.Federal health regulators have already authorized Medtronic’s implant for sale in the U.S. St. Jude Medical Inc. and Boston Scientific Corp. sell similar devices overseas and are seeking U.S. approval.The memory project is part of President Barack Obama’s BRAIN initiative, which funds research that seeks to find treatments for some of the most common brain disorders, such as Alzheimer’s and brain injury.DARPA is seeking to develop a portable, wireless device that “must incorporate implantable probes” to record and stimulate brain activity, according to documents posted online. Those submitting proposals were instructed to specify the number, size, spacing, weight and power requirements of the probes in their proposals, as well as what areas of the brain would be targeted and the surgical procedures used to implant the devices.The existing Medtronic product to treat Parkinson’s uses a surgically implanted device consisting of thin wires that carry a signal to electrodes that “deliver stimulation to the brain.” Some of the wires are implanted inside the brain, while the rest are placed under the scalp. The electrical impulses are powered by a product located under the skin in the upper chest area, according to the company’s website.The DARPA initiative isn’t designed to recover the type of memories used to recall a person’s name. Instead, it would help wounded warriors recover “task-based motor skills” necessary for “life or livelihood,” Ling said.DARPA has a history of supporting programs that have led to commercial success. DARPA’s work contributed to the creation of the Internet and stealth fighter jets. Its long-shot, far-out projects now under development include “geckskin,” part of a program designed to help soldiers climb walls like lizards, and robotic pack mules capable of carrying gear.–With assistance from Robert Langreth in New York. Editors: Stephanie Stoughton, Rick Schine

how smart you are in using your smartphone?


how smart you are in using your smartphone?

by Samantha Lee

http://hongkongbusiness.hk/telecom-internet/commentary/how-smart-you-are-in-using-your-smartphone

How smart you are in using your smartphone?

The torrent of technological changes in the past couple of decades may have profound influence to your lifestyle. Internet is well recognized as the most profound technological advancement in the last two decade.

This decade, smartphones riding on the internet have driven us crazy and drowned us in the flood of information.

The lifestyle of most people, both personal and business, are changing since the launch of smartphones. We can access to the internet anywhere anytime with this “smart” handheld mobile computing devices (simply speaking, Smartphones) on hand. This means that we can now work and play online 7 x 24 x 365.Will this do us good? It depends…

Simply answer “Yes” or “No” to the following ten questions and you will know whether the smartphones do you good:

Question 1: You’re glued to your smartphone screen day-in and day-out.

Question 2: You spend over 50% of your time checking information from your smartphone while you are in a business meeting or attending a social gathering with friends.

Question 3: You have over 300 “apps” in your smart devices and you never touch half of them in the last 3 months.

Question 4: You never read a printed book or newspaper in the last six months because you read it online with your smartphone.

Question 5: You prefer to “what’s app” your business partner or friends than talk directly to them over the phone.

Question 6: You stop buying CD, DVD and books because you can have freebies from your smartphone.

Question 7: You will return home to fetch your smartphone if you forgot to bring it with you but you will not do the same if you forgot your wallet.

Question 8: Will you be panic if you lost your smart phone?

Question 9: Do you think the emerging of “smartphone” had shot your worklife balance to bits. You will check work email when you are on your way home soon after work.

Question 10: You have one of the following symptoms: Smart Phone Thumb, Cell Phone Elbow, Cell Phone Neck, Smart Phone Nails, Cellular Blindness.

Simply speaking, the use of smartphones causes you discomfort and even pain of your body parts.

Conclusion

0 Yes It means that you don’t have a smartphone. You need to purchase one immediately so as to cope with this “internet” world.

1-4 Yes it’s fine, you are in control of your smartphone.

5 Yes It ‘s a marginal case, be alert how you use your smartphone in a wise way.

6-9 Yes You are not that smart in using your smartphone and you are quite addicted to it.

10 Yes You are crazily addicted to your smartphone and under its control, an immediate review on how you use your “smartphone” is required.

A smartphone is a hybrid of a cell phone and a hand-held computer. The ability to access the Internet from anywhere allows you to perform work outside the physical office and to remain perpetually in touch through social networks and to access  vast of information anywhere, anytime.

While this ability gives users the potential to be more productive and efficient, it also underlies some disadvantages. It makes it difficult for some people to designate a clear delineation between work life and home life.

Frequent checking of email and internet applications takes time and attention away from interpersonal relationships. Spending too much time on it will even affect health.Use your smartphone in a smart way can help increase productivity and efficiency. However, if you are too obsessed with it, you will become the slave of your smart device.An advice to all smartphone users, take your brain with you when you move your fingers. Be smart with your smartphone! 

全球最便宜 印度研發35美元筆電


(路透)2010年7月23日 星期五 15:56 中央社(翻譯)

(路透新德里23日電)印度    研發出全世界最廉價的筆記型電腦,全套包括觸控螢幕僅要價35美元    

印度人力資源部部長席保(Kapil Sibal)本週發表專為學生設計的這款廉價電腦。他表示,人力資源部已和全球製造商洽談大量生產事宜。

他在記者會上說:「我們如今已進入研發階段,主機板、晶片、處理器、連接器,全部加起來約35美元,這還包括記憶體、顯示器等所有配備。」

他表示,這款觸控螢幕筆電還包括網路瀏覽器、PDF閱讀器和視訊會議設備。硬體設備的設計能讓使用者依照需求加以擴充。

他表示,預計2011年起將採用Linux作業系統的這款電腦引進高等教育機構。目標是再降價至20美元,最終將價格壓低至10美元。

全國頂尖科技學府的印度理工學院(IndianInstitute of Technology)和印度科學學院(IndianInstitute of Science)的研究團隊,聯手研發這款電腦。

facebook「鬧鬼」


FB死人帳戶「陰魂不散」? 死人帳戶陰魂不散 網站竟促用戶聯絡已故親友
(明報)2010年7月19日 星期一 05:10 紐約    時報

【明報專訊】全球最大社交網站facebook「鬧鬼」?若閣下是用戶,也許亦遇過這樣的經歷——登入網頁,卻發現你已過身的親朋「出現」眼前,網站建議你與他保持聯絡,又或通知你,他快將生日。隨著facebook愈來愈多中年人士和長者加入,用戶去世後繼續在facebook空間「陰魂不散」的情况亦愈益嚴重,如何處理,令facebook當局也大為頭痛。

美國    得州教師珀文,近日瀏覽社交網站facebook時,赫然發現網站建議她跟4年前在其婚禮上彈奏鋼琴的一名家族朋友保持聯繫絡,實情是這位朋友已在4月身故。她坦言感覺有點令人心裏發毛,「就像他從陰間回魂」來找自己般。

自動系統辨不出離世用戶

37歲的美國編輯湯森亦坦言,多次在facebook收到跟死人交友的「建議」。「見到他們的照片可以是一種慰藉,但對於facebook建議跟死人重建連繫,那根本就是不可能實現的事。這只會令人感到難受」。

Facebook現時採用的自動運算系統,會隨時提醒用戶朋友的生日、提供交友建議,但問題是自動系統不懂分辨哪些用戶已經離世,以致不少facebook用戶死後仍然「陰魂不散」,令在生的用戶,不時收到與死人交朋友或保持聯絡的「建議」。

長者用戶激增

新澤西州    拉特格斯大學的傳意專家卡茨教授指出,facebook正出現「人口老化」的趨勢,最初大部分用戶都是年輕人,很少人英年早逝,但近年65歲以上長者加入facebook的速度,比任何年齡組別都要快,單在5月已有650萬長者成為會員,比去年同期的新增會員多出兩倍。既然有大量長者加入,用戶死亡率亦大大提升,令facebook「鬧鬼」的問題愈趨嚴重。

Facebook發言人梅雷迪思承認,暫時沒有辦法可以妥善處理「死人回魂」的問題,「這是敏感議題,見到過身的朋友在facebook彈出會令人難受。但每天都有用戶離世,我們總不能趕及更新用戶資料」。

研識別「死人關鍵字」軟件

作為全球最大的社交網站,facebook迄今擁有約5億登記帳戶,職員與用戶的比例大概是1比35萬。除了讓用戶在facebook網站自行匯報朋友的死訊,facebook也在研究使用軟件,分辨某人帳戶中是否重複出現大量「死人關鍵字」,包括「安息」(rest in peace)及「我懷念你」(I miss you),然後派職員調查用戶是否已經身故。Facebook表示,正試驗如何改善這種軟件,因生死大事不容兒戲。


死者帳戶可變悼念版供留言

(明報)2010年7月19日 星期一 05:10

【明報專訊】Facebook處理離世用戶的手法近年不斷演變,初期當發現用戶身故,只會乾脆把帳戶刪除,近年才將死者帳戶變為悼念帳號,供親友隨時留言紀念。

Facebook悼念帳號的意念,源於2007年弗吉尼亞理工大學    造成32人死亡的校園槍擊案後,很多用戶要求facebook保留死者帳戶。但由於facebook甚少宣傳有匯報親友死亡的選項(如何操作見另表),以致facebook現充斥大量死人帳戶。Facebook職員在接獲死亡登記後,會將死者帳戶變為悼念帳號。這些悼念帳號並不能在facebook搜索結果中找到,只有死者生前確認的朋友才可瀏覽。換言之,悼念帳戶不能加入新朋友,就算是死者的父母摯親,如非死者確認的朋友,亦不能瀏覽帳戶所有圖片及資訊。


朋友整蠱虛報死訊 用戶變喪屍

(明報)2010年7月19日 星期一 05:10 紐約    時報

【明報專訊】若尚未離世卻又被朋友「整蠱」,向facebook匯報死訊,會有什麼麻煩?德國    軟件工程師圖爾布恩(Simon Thulbourn)就因朋友惡作劇,以他人的訃文向當局虛報其死訊,令他的帳戶無故變成悼念帳號,連圖爾布恩本人也無法登入,令他自嘲淪為「facebook喪屍」。

提供訃文證明 職員核對出錯

圖爾布恩去年一時貪玩,在facebook帳戶的留言板,張貼了「我想令人死」的網頁,其友約翰尼見到,靈機一觸,決定在facebook把他「殺死」。雖然facebook要求報料者提供訃文等死亡證明,但核對工夫卻認真麻麻,約翰尼找來一個名字跟圖爾布恩差不多的死者(Revd Simon Thorburn)訃文,但facebook職員沒發現名字不對,接納了虛報死訊,將其帳戶變成悼念帳號。

圖爾布恩發現後,即時鍵入facebook「使用說明中心」查詢,但就未能提供「如果未死,如何重開帳戶」的答案。他向facebook投訴無門,最後自設網站,並在Twitter澄清自己尚在人世,經其他博客轉載,吸引到facebook注意,才讓他「還陽」恢復帳戶。

4 tips to protect you from ATM thieves


bankrate Constance Gustke, On Wednesday July 14, 2010, 6:00 am EDT
 

ATMs are under siege more than ever from skimming. Skimming, where ATM thieves steal your PIN and account number using remote devices, is increasing dramatically. Often done by sophisticated crime rings from the Eastern bloc countries, ATM skimming is becoming a high-tech art that’s hard to detect.

That’s bad news for consumers. Experts say that losses from skimming are approaching $1 billion. Nearly one in five fraud victims reported having their credit card PIN or debit card ATM PIN information stolen in 2009, according to Javelin Strategy & Research. And Robert Vamosi, an analyst handling risk, fraud and security at Javelin, sees ATM skimming continuing to rise this year and next.

"Consumers aren’t aware of ATM tampering," he says. "ATMs have 40 years of trust."

Skimming isn’t new. It’s been around for at least 10 years. What has changed is that the "technology of the bad guy is getting better and better every year," says Robert Siciliano, a security expert based in Boston. "It’s up to consumers to watch their own backs."

Typically, ATM thieves use two devices to capture your PIN and card data. One device sits near where you swipe your card and reads the magnetic stripe on your card with your account number. Even more confusing, the device mimics the card slot. "The technology has evolved to a point where the molded plastic fits like it belongs there," says Siciliano. Devices are even readily available over the Internet for as little as $300.

A camera, hidden from view, captures the PIN. "You can get the data in real time," says Siciliano. "You can be in your car with a laptop remotely accessing the device."

Thieves then burn the data onto a blank card to access your money.

U.S. Secret Service spokesman Max Milien wants consumers to be warned. "The public is notified after an event," he says. And don’t take bank security for granted. Fraud can occur at any bank in any part of the country. Thieves are even sending out false text alerts to get consumer data.

Banks, they say, are slow to adopt anti-skimming measures. When Javelin surveyed 25 banks, four stood out, though, for their anti-theft measures. They are Bank of America, Chase, Citibank and Wells Fargo.

Experts add that debit card users are most at risk. Typically, consumers must report fraudulent charges within two days, limiting your liability to $50. If you report ATM skimming fraud within 60 days, you’re liable for the first $500 of any transaction. Siciliano adds that thieves carefully orchestrate ATM withdrawals, maxing out cash withdrawals one day and waiting until after midnight for the next stash, which quickly adds up.

Here are four tips to help you protect your account.

1. Cover your password with your hand

Hidden cameras are disguised so they can pick up your password. By protecting it, ATM thieves can’t access your account.

2. Use familiar ATMs and limit your visits

ATMs in dimly lighted spots or used late at night could be more susceptible to fraud, while ATMs under video surveillance can be safer. Stay away from ATMs at retail stores or restaurants, adds Siciliano. Recently, skimming devices were found on ATMs in a popular grocery store in central Florida. Airports, convenience stores or kiosks are equally vulnerable to ATM thieves. Still, even highly trafficked ATMs outside a bank branch have been targeted by thieves.

Also, try to limit your visits to the ATM. "With frequency, there’s risk," says Siciliano.

3. Check bank balances frequently

Given the two-day window for reporting fraud, it pays to check your account frequently. If you don’t report fraud within 60 days, you have unlimited liability. "Sign up for alerts and notice unusual withdrawals," says Vamosi.

With credit cards there are more protections in place, and you can dispute charges."You have at least a billing cycle," says Siciliano.

4. Observe the ATM

Vamosi cautions consumers to look at an ATM to make sure a card slot is "legitimate and not tacked on." Look for things that strike you, he says. "Some people have felt that when they inserted their card, something went awry," he says. In that case, try another ATM.

When protecting your account against ATM thieves, "it’s all about awareness, paying attention and understanding risks," says Sicilano. "There are 400,000 ATMs and every one of them is susceptible to fraud. The speed and convenience of technology has replaced the security of technology."

一按尋性伴 軟件捱轟


(明報)2010年7月5日 星期一 05:10    觀察家報

【明報專訊】美國    一款專為同性戀者尋找性伴侶的iPhone軟件,面世後大受歡迎。軟件發明者決定再接再厲,計劃在年底推出這款「獵艷」軟件的異性戀者版本。發明者聲稱軟件可助解決性需要,但有輿論批評,它純粹為性而設,完全沒有建立人際關係的觀念,鼓吹一夜情濫交。

這款軟件名為Grindr,它透過GPS全球定位系統,將用家附近的求歡者定位,並展示他們的性感照片,協助用家尋覓「有心人」歡好。此軟件經英國    演員Stephen Fry在極受歡迎的汽車電視節目《Top Gear》推介後,一周內曾吸引4萬人下載,至今全球162國已有逾70萬名同性戀者使用。有Grindr擁躉不諱言:「我用了Grindr軟件8個月以來的歡好次數,相當於20多年的總和。」

同性戀版本大熱

Grindr由33歲美國男子西姆海(Joel Simkhai)構思設計,在擔任軟件開發商的朋友協助下,西姆海花了半年僅5000美元    ,把意念化為現實。有見Grindr大受歡迎,西姆海打算在年底前推出異性戀版。他聲稱,Grindr專為用家「在社交圈尋人、交際」,但寂寞不是同性戀者的專利,異性戀者都有興趣知道,「誰在附近?這房間裏有什麼人?誰像我一樣在找伴?」西姆海稱,Grindr比網上約會更方便,因為用家都近在咫尺,可即時相見,毋須遙距傳情。另外,用戶不能上載虛假照片行騙,因對方按定位系統可即時找到你,是否合眼緣即時有分曉。

有人質疑,有多少女性會像同志一樣「推銷自己」求歡。但西姆海聲稱,很多女性要求他推出新版Grindr,他預期新軟件在女性市場大有可為。他還道﹕「Grindr是性的先驅……我們視性為生活的基本組成部分。」不過同志雜誌編輯托德(Matthew Todd)卻警告,Grindr應屬於成年人的商業世界,他擔心年輕人接觸這種純料談性、缺乏真正人際關係的氛圍環境。

網上欺凌


調查指網絡欺凌以言語欺凌最常見

(商台)2010年7月3日 星期六 10:45

一項調查訪問一千八百名中學生,三成受訪中學生表示,曾經在網上被欺凌,當中包括被辱罵、散播謠言及威脅,或將不雅照片上傳到互聯網。另外,有接近一成八的學生,承認曾經參與網絡暴力。調查指,網絡欺凌的方式,以言語欺凌最常見。

進行調查的香港家庭福利會,建議青少年建立正確使用網絡的態度,學校要對有需要的同學,加強支援,亦可考慮與互聯網供應商,設立合適管理機制,避免網絡欺凌蔓延。


調查指三成中學生曾被網上欺凌

(商台)2010年7月3日 星期六 10:28

香港家庭福利會,訪問一千八百名中學生,三成受訪中學生表示,曾經在網上被欺凌,當中包括被辱罵、散播謠言及威脅,或將不雅照片上傳到互聯網。另外,有接近一成八的學生,承認曾經參與網絡暴力。

.xxx色情域名有譜 產值驚人


(路透)2010年6月25日 星期五 15:11

(路透布魯塞爾24日電負責全球網站域名的公司主管今天表示,這家公司預料明天會通過成立以.xxx為結尾的頂級域名,供色情網站使用。

代表美國    政府監管域名的網際網路名稱與號碼分配組織(ICANN),過去拒絕比照.com 和.net 設立.xxx頂級域名,近年更屢次駁回美國網域名稱管理公司ICMRegistry所提的相關申請。

不過ICANN董事會有成員主張,為維護域名分配中立性,應設立.xxx 域名,允許內容露骨的色情網站自主使用。

網路色情市場龐大,國際色情統計機構(InternetPornography Statistics)指出,花在色情上的金額高達每秒鐘3000美元    ,sex(性)更高居全球搜尋字眼榜首,佔整體搜尋量的25%。

全球估計共有3億7000萬個色情網站,.xxx 域名可望成為版圖最廣的頂級域名,旗下網站數目就算不超過.com,也可望與之匹敵。

不過成人產業也有人認為這會招來審查機制,因此反對設立.xxx 域名,美國一些宗教團體也以道德為由反對。

ICANN預料明天正式就此做出宣布。中央社(翻譯)

三藩市新法強制公布手機輻射量


(星島)2010年6月17日 星期四 15:51

美國    三藩市    政府通過實施一項新規例,強制連鎖手機商在店內提供所有出售或出租手機款式、型號的輻射    度(SAR),讓消費者知道所使用的手機會釋出多少輻射,違反法例的手機商會被罰款200英鎊。這是全球首個城市實施相關措施,開全球先河。

三藩市政府是於本周二以十票對一票通過這項新法案,法案在下周會進行最後表決。三藩市市長紐森形容這是手機用戶的一大勝利,因為他們有權知道手機的輻射量。

相關新例和垃圾食品或香煙包裝上附加健康字眼的措施類似,但三藩市是全球首個把這種做法延伸至手機的城市。

根據新法案,從明年二月開始,連鎖手機商需要在店內提供所有出售或出租手機款式、型號的輻射量,後年則所有市內手機商無論大小都要遵守此規定。

雲端服務廉 吸引中小企使用


雲端服務廉 吸引中小企使用

(明報)2010年6月9日 星期三 05:10

【明報專訊】所謂「雲端運算」(cloud computing),是指用戶的電腦透過互聯網與稱為「雲端」的第3方電腦連上,用戶的電腦只會負責發出指令和接收結果,由「雲端」負責運算。

雲端提供三大類服務,分別是軟件、硬件、平台,部分服務是免費的,就算收費也是以使用量計算。使用雲端運算,用戶毋須特定硬件設備,只需要有穩定網絡,用戶可免去沉重的資產投資;隨著近年網速與頻寬不斷上升,「雲端運算」費用下跌,吸引不少中小企以及社福機構使用。