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Showing posts from April, 2008

The 10 most important technologies you never think about

The late sci-fi author Arthur C. Clarke famously said that any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.We certainly live in a magical world. We're surrounded by technology, yet we seldom stop to consider the amazing advances that we've come to rely on every day. Whether we're surfing the Web, making a call on our mobile phones, or watching a DVD movie on our big-screen TV, we take our modern conveniences for granted.Here, then, is a peek inside the magician's hat at 10 technologies that are keys to our digital age. Without realizing it, you've probably used at least one of them already today -- if not all. But whether you're aware of them or not, without these technologies our world would be a very different place.Unicode
We use computers for every kind of communication, from IM to e-mail to writing the Great American Novel. The trouble is, computers don't speak our language. They're all digital; before they can store or process …

Indian American developing infrared super computers

Washington: A computer that is a thousand-fold faster than the fastest current supercomputers is being developed by an Indian American scientist.

The machine of the future being developed by Ashok Nahata of the University of Utah relies on infrared wavelengths rather than electrical wires.

Nahata and his team made the equivalent of wires that carried and bent this form of infrared light, or terahertz radiation, the least exploited segment of electromagnetic spectrum.

Scientists want to harness this spectrum, since vast loads of communication clog the existing spectrum. It would not only make for much faster computing but also help in designing scanners and sensors able to detect biological, chemical or other weapons.

Nahata said the long-term goal is to develop capabilities to create circuits that run faster than modern-day electronic circuits "so we can have faster computers and faster data transfer via the Internet".

"We have taken a first step to making circuits that can…

The better question might be, what doesn't Google know about us, according to Gartner analysts.

LAS VEGAS -- Google knows almost everything connected to the Web, but there is one major source of untapped data the company has scarcely touched to date. Can you guess that area?If you cried "e-commerce transactions" you would be right, according to analysts at the Gartner Symposium ITexpo 2008 here April 10. Thanks to a powerful database management system and corresponding technologies, the company is able to access just about anything that hasn't been encrypted, said Gartner analyst Richard Hunter in his presentation on what kind of information Google corrals on the world. The one area where Google isn't particularly strong is in e-commerce transactions, where its Google Checkout platform sees only about 1 percent of what is sold on the Internet. "This is obviously an area of great interest for them because so much of their current revenue is devised of advertising," Hunter said.The conversation shed a new light on the rumor that Google could buy online …