- Drawing Inspiration From Nature To Build A Better Radio — based on the design of the cochlear, this MIT-built RF chip is faster than others out there, and consumes 1/100th the power. Biomimicry and UWB radio are on our radar.
- Why the Smart Grid Won’t Have the Innovations of the Internet Any Time Soon — While it’s significant that utilities are starting to build out smart grid infrastructure, utilities are largely opting for networks that provide connections that are far from real time, and this could stifle the desired innovation. […] smart meter data that is pushed to Google’s PowerMeter energy tool has to make its way back to the utility before it can be sent to Google. That means that even for Google’s energy tool, there can be both a significant delay before information reaches consumers, and significant gaps in energy data details. These delays and gaps can undercut the premise of how smart meter technologies will empower consumers to make decisions about their energy use based on real-time costs. Smart grids (houses and devices able to take use of instantaneous pricing changes) have the potential to help us with our energy obesity problem, but the architecture must be right.
- API Value Creation, Not Monetization — On the side of the unexpected but interesting outcomes, Kevin said they have seen a flurry of internally developed business applications. In the past many valuable, internal-facing projects were turned down because the programs had to meet strict top line to bottom line ratios. With the availability to data and services, many teams within the company now have access to things they didn’t in the past, and project costs have been minimized. Throughout the company, consumers of the API have been able to launch successful projects that have created additional revenue and have reduced the overall development costs for new projects. Some solid numbers and names to help convince businesses to offer APIs, though the battle is still much harder than it should be.
- Watercoolr — a pubsub server for your apps. A channel is a list of URLs to be notified whenever a message is posted to that channel. Clever little piece of infrastructure for web apps, embodying the Unix philosophy of small tools that each do one thing very well. (via straup on Delicious)
"power management" entries
I've spent three days watching my power consumption like a hawk, here's how it's going
I’ve been interested in having a better handle on my electrical consumption for a long time. Our family regularly goes through 1100-1200 kWh a month, and it’s been frustrating that I couldn’t really get a grip on where or when the power was really being used. I want to get my power usage under control. Fortunately Google announced on their blog that normal mortals could now order a device called The Energy Detective (or TED, as he’s known by his friends…) Using TED, I’ve been able to quickly find the critical items that I need to make sure get shut off when not used.
Biological Radio, Laggy Smart Grids, API Moneys, and Pubsub Server
Data centers, open research, Jeopardy!, and tombstones
- Google Server and Data Center Details — Greg Linden reports on a Efficient Data Center Summit. Google uses single volt power and on-board uninterruptible power supply to raise efficiency at the motherboard from the norm of 65-85% to 99.99%. There is a picture of the board on slide 17. (and this is a 2005 board). Greg has left Microsoft as Live Labs is dissolved.
- The Economics of Open Access Publishing — set of papers on the free distribution of research. Pointed to by the RePEc blog. RePEc is Research Papers in Economics, a collaborative effort of hundreds of volunteers in 67 countries to enhance the dissemination of research in economics. The heart of the project is a decentralized database of working papers, journal articles and software components. All RePEc material is freely available. (via Paul Reynolds)
- Computer Program to Take On Jeopardy! (NY Times) — move over Turing Test, IBM’s working on the Trebek Test: a computer program to compete against human “Jeopardy!” contestants. If the program beats the humans, the field of artificial intelligence will have made a leap forward. Really? The system must be able to deal with analogies, puns, double entendres and relationships like size and location, all at lightning speed. Oh, ok. So it’s more complex than inverting the hash table of questions and answers. (via ericries on Twitter)
- The Value of Minimal Data (Powerhouse Museum) — if you have the ability for passionate users to contribute their knowledge, they can turn “minimal” data into a delicious four course data feast with a vintage port to sip during the dessert course. (via sebchan on Twitter)
- Hahlo – a very sweet-looking mobile (iPhone in the particular) optimised Twitter interface. Although, as I said, every time a Twitter API-consuming web site makes me type in my username and password, a little piece of my soul dies. Thanks to @sogrady for the pointer.
- Prius as emergency generator – New York Times story about a clever gent who didn’t panic during the ice storm, but used his Prius to generate power to see him through.
- BurnBall, an iPhone game by Kiwi Foo Camp alumnus Tim Haines.
- Links as a first class object – Ian Bicking makes an eminently sensible suggestion for everyone building a CMS or even vaguely net-aware application.
Bill Coleman has twice transformed our industry, and I'm excited to announce that he will keynote Velocity later this month. Bill is most famous for being the "B" in BEA and for leading the creation of Solaris while at Sun. He is now the CEO of his new startup, Cassatt, which "makes Data Centers more efficient". Bill is awesome and…