As counterfeiters continue to up their game, technology’s quest for the ultimate method of proving authenticity goes on. We’ve seen ideas at the nano level before, but IBM thinks its latest research might be so difficult to reverse engineer, that it’s impossible for forgers to reproduce. IBM scientist Dr. Heiko Wolf explains that the basic principle involves using the surface tension of water to orient nanorods on a stamp, which can then be printed onto any surface. These nanorods are so small that gravity alone isn’t enough to place the particles into predetermined patterns, such as corporate logos. IBM’s researchers have also patented a related nano-patterning method that uses fluorescent spheres that can take the color red, blue or green. These then arrange themselves in a completely random order, which is mathematically so difficult to replicate it’s known as PUF (physically uncloanable function). Both methods can be applied to a broad selection of objects, making them ideal candidates for anti-counterfeit detection for everything from diamonds to passports — all that’s needed to verify authenticity is an optical microscope. Don’t get your Picasso out of the vault just yet though, as it’s estimated that it’ll be another five years or so before the technology will find its way to market.
Source: IBM Research
Medical research facility Cleveland Clinic and IBM are teaming up to develop ways to let supercomputer Watson become a useful tool for doctors. The machine’s ability to analyze language and scour its database for answers is hoped to offer quicker and more exhaustive diagnoses for patients. As modern medical students spend less time memorizing diseases, they’re focusing on learning how to think critically and navigate the huge amount of available data. Big Blue is also hoping that the Jeopardy champion will learn how to digest a person’s medical records in order to match up their history with maladies. We’re just nervous that someone will give Watson a telepresence robot and send him out onto the wards — you’d be worried about his bedside manner if you’ve seen his ruthless quizzing manner.
http://w ww.engadget.com/2012/10/30/cleveland-clinic-watson/”>Cleveland Clinic and IBM team up to make Watson a Doctor (video) originally appeared on Engadget on Tue, 30 Oct 2012 15:46:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.
Fujitsu demos ad transmission technology, sends info from TV to handset via smartphone camera (video)
Another easter egg at Fujitsu’s CEATEC booth was a system for transmitting coupons, URLs and other digital information from a TV screen to a user’s smartphone. We’ll back up a bit: the data ends up on-screen in the first place thanks to information embedded in light flashing at various levels of brightness (the frame rate is too quick to be detected by the human eye). Theoretically, when a viewer is watching a commercial, they’ll see a prompt to hold up their phone’s camera to the screen, and doing so will bring up a corresponding coupon or website on their handset — it takes about two to three seconds here for the recognition. The embedded information covers the entire panel, so users don’t need to point their device at a particular section of the screen.
In Fujitsu’s demo, pointing a smartphone at the TV pulled up a website on the phone. It only took about a second for the URL to pop up on the device, and there was no noticeable flickering on the TV itself (essentially, the picture looks identical to what you’d see on a non-equipped model, since your eye won’t notice the code appearing at such a high frequency). The company says this technology works at a distance of up to two or three meters. Head past the break to take a look at the prototype in action.
Fujitsu demos ad transmission technology, sends info from TV to handset via smartphone camera (video) originally appeared on Engadget on Tue, 02 Oct 2012 16:42:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.
Luxury brands plan to ramp up spending on online video and rich media at the expense of traditional media (e.g., magazine and TV ads), per findings [pdf] from an August 2012 study by Martini Media, in partnership with Digiday. Some 14% of agency respondents described the amount of money their luxury clients will shift from [...]
It’s the ten-year anniversary of the launch of MLB.TV. The online-video site is produced by MLB Advanced Media, the tech arm of Major League Baseball. MLBAM sells subscriptions to live games of every single baseball team streamed online. As a result, it has a unique look at how people’s media consumption habits are evolving online.
On the occasion of the anniversary, we asked MLBAM for a chart that shows how viewing habits have evolved over the years. Rather than give us years of data, MLBAM gave us this year as compared to last year. And you can see there’s been a major shift in consumption over the last year.
People who watched games only on their desktop have fallen by almost half on a year over year basis. While people who watched games on desktop, smartphone, and connected devices like Xboxs nearly doubled.
The take away to us is that people want to watch video wherever they can on any device that’s available.
In light of recent scandals, it’s hard not to see this as a bit of image rehabilitation, but we’ll do our best to take it at face value. News Corp is bringing its 18-month-old educational division to the fore by rebranding it Amplify and teaming up with AT&T to put tablets in the hands of students. The unit will focus on developing products and services tailored for classrooms, ranging from kindergarten through high school. And, at the center of that ecosystem, will be the Amplify Tablet (which, judging from the video below, appears to be a modified Galaxy Tab). Videos, encyclopedia entries, books and even remote tutoring apps will all be just a tap away. The tablets will get their first trial run in the US during the 2012-2013 school year. With the phone hacking scandal behind him, former New York City school chancellor Joel Klein (who headed up News Corp’s internal investigation), is free to focus on getting Amplify rolling and into classrooms across the nation. Before you head off, make sure to watch the clip from AT&T after the break.
Ne ws Corp launches Amplify educational unit, with help from AT&T (video) originally appeared on Engadget on Mon, 23 Jul 2012 13:30:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.
Google has already been taking us to exotic locations through Street View, but now it’s hoping to enshrine the most famous places on Earth through the World Wonders Project, one car (or trike) at a time. A total of 132 sites, ranging from natural landmarks like Yosemite to much more synthetic constructions like the Leaning Tower of Pisa, have both an on-the-ground view as well as 3D renderings, videos and loads of history from UNESCO and the World Monuments Fund, among others. The educational bent is so conspicuous that Google is offering up some of the content in downloadable bundles for schools along with the usual web-based look. All of it promises a much more fascinating, hands-on approach than a dry textbook, and it’s a unique way of bringing encyclopedic knowledge to an era of Chromebooks and the cloud.
Google World Wonders Project takes you to Earth’s treasures in glorious Street View vision (video) originally appeared on Engadget on Fri, 01 Jun 2012 02:01:00 EDT. Please see our terms f or use of feeds.
We’d been wondering what Google would do following its acquisition of Zagat, and now we know: it’s part of Google+ Local, a boost to Maps, general search, and Google+ itself. Zagat’s point system now automatically shows up in search results for restaurants that have been given the extra scrutiny. Those of us who don’t trust The Man for reviews will also now see Google+ friends’ picks surface at the same time. The addition is considered important enough that Google is even adding a Local tab on Google+ just to show recommendations, so you won’t have to abandon your constant updating (you’re always posting on Google+, right?) to find a well-rated sushi place. Local should be live soon, if not now, and will make search plus Your World that much more omnipresent.
Google+ Local sees reviews from friends, Zagat invade your restaurant hunts (video) originally appeared on Engadget on Wed, 30 May 2012 09:22:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.
Dr. Augustine Fou is Digital Consigliere to marketing executives, advising them on digital strategy and Unified Marketing(tm). Dr Fou has over 17 years of in-the-trenches, hands-on experience, which enables him to provide objective, in-depth assessments of their current marketing programs and recommendations for improving business impact and ROI using digital insights.
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