~e; Electromagnetic News & Views #14

From bc <human@electronetwork.org>
Date Sun, 16 Feb 2003 01:18:20 -0600

Electromagnetic News & Views -- #14

00) Electronetwork.org Commentary (2/16/2003)

01) Top Stories of Electromagnetism
02) Electromagnetic health & medicine
03) Electromagnetic trash & treasure
04) Electromagnetic security & surveillance
05) Electromagnetic power & energy
06) Electromagnetic current & human affairs
07) Electromagnetic transportation & communication
08) Electromagnetic matter & information
09) Electromagnetic trends & inventions
10) Electromagnetic weaponry & warfare
11) Electromagnetic business & economics
12) Electromagnetic art & artifacts

00) --commentary--

This time an electromagnetism-related quote:

"On oil, Grossman and Feith officials stressed that this
resource should remain under Iraqi control, with the proceeds used
to support Iraqis in all parts of the country.

Feith said it was "false and malign" to claim, as anti-war protesters
do, that the United States wants to go into Iraq to take control of
its vast oil resources."

from story:  U.S. plans don't include Iraq occupation

01) --top stories--

// in business terms, consider a stalled EM economy, energy
// wars, changes in insurance policies with regard to related
// issues of global warming, automobile industries transforming,
// sci-tech focused on EM RD&D investments, & VCs are interested...

Can Energy Ventures Pick Up Where Tech Left Off?

"Alternative energy, like the Internet a decade ago, is largely the
realm of arcane technology and technologists. The newcomers see
an opportunity to apply the formula they honed with the Web: take
technology with big market potential and add managerial talent
and venture capital..."
"Many entrepreneurs see in alternative energy that rare and
desirable condition — a disruptive technology that could transform
entire industries, from energy to transportation."

// this flash-based game is a must see... it is like the
// computer game 'civilization' and also the 'sims' type,
// yet is also a type of reasoning that never gets through
// traditional channels of communications, via spoken/written
// words. therefore, it may be onto something else altogether,
// like the flash-cartoons by Fiore, it changes perspectives...

Net game simulates 'worst case scenario' in Iraq

"Toppling Saddam Hussein is in the war simulation game
"Gulf War 2" is the easy part. Coping with what comes
next is more difficult."

Analog Chips
Digital demise : In the coming years, look for analog--
not digital--chips to attract the new talent and investment.

"Analog chips enable computers to interact with the physical world--
to see, listen, touch--before that information is changed into the
ones and zeroes of computing's lingua franca. Analog is the yin to
digital's yang; it is capable of dealing with continuous states of
information, waves of light and sound..."

02-- electromagnetic health & medicine

Hospitals Sold on Digital X-Rays 

"Previously, hospitals needed $80,000 workstations to handle the
100 MB that some medical images can generate. But the technology Chang
developed allows anyone at the hospital to view them on a standard PC."

Polymers Promote Nerve Regeneration: Ames Laboratory Researcher's
Microscale Channels Steer Neurons To Rewire Damaged Nerves

03-- electromagnetic trash & treasure

Infineon Builds Chip to Read Brain Cell Signals

"Researchers at Infineon Technologies AG in Germany have developed
new semiconductor technology that will allow scientists to read
electrical signals in living nerve cells, the company said on Tuesday.
"For example, you could put slices from brain nerve cells on the
chip, apply drugs and see how the nerve signals" and cells react
to a particular drug, [Roland Thewes] said in an interview. "

// archaeology is fascinating in this regard, from the long-term
// storage of data and its organization, to the ruins of particle-
// accelerators and other 'industrial' EM artifacts. point being,
// what is this archaeology of the present we are now compiling --
// may it be the memory for a future civilization prepared for it?

Memory Overload
As hard drives get bigger and cheaper, we're storing way too much.

"If life gets recorded in real time, it hardly counts as a record at  

Epson recycling program for Epson products...

04-- electromagnetic security & surveillance

Buffers Cause Heaps of Problems // interesting read...

"Many apps use library code that still contains unchecked buffers;
and even new code exhibits the problem, introduced by careless
programmers and undetected by inefficient testing. Now, a new
version of this old problem is appearing: a version that does
not rely on overflowing stack-held variables and so is not
protected by the architectural approach of inhibiting stack
execution. In this new version, an alternative memory location
is used: the program heap."

Bar-coded babies latest in high-tech security

"The baby's bar code, which also includes information about the
mother and the birth, can be scanned by a machine that matches
the child with its mother if there is any doubt about identity."

Sixth-grader charged in grade switch caper // via drudgereport.com

"The boy told reading teacher Susan Seal he left his lunch in
her room, according to a sheriff's report. Instead of retrieving
his meal, he sat down at her computer, changed the grades of five
reading assignments and saved the changes. Math teacher Tanya
Schmidt saw the boy at the computer and asked what he was doing."

// RFIDs used by the us.mil for Total Asset Visibility (TAV)...

U.S. military expands radio-wave tracking
The U.S. Department of Defense is expanding its use of an emerging
technology that combines radio waves and computer networks to track
shipments of military supplies, in what some consider the largest
project of its kind.

A Short History of Computer Viruses and Attacks
By Brian Krebs, Washington Post Feb 14 2003

05-- electromagnetic power & energy

Start-up redesigns fuel cells
A start-up company says it has developed a way to make fuel cells out
of silicon, a change that potentially could increase the performance
of cells and make them easier to manufacture.

BP Completes Big Oil Deal With Russians

"BP, the world's third-largest oil company, agreed today
to pay $6.75 billion to form a new Russian oil company. The
deal underscores the growing attractiveness of Russia to foreign
oil concerns and could increase the country's already significant
role as an exporter of crude oil.
But Russia may have become too important to ignore.
Russia's oil output grew nearly 9 percent last year, and by the
end of the year, the country had overtaken Saudi Arabia as the
world's largest producer, though Saudi Arabia still exports more oil."

How Lightning Works

War Fears Push Crude Past $36 Barrel // 29-month high...

A War for Oil? Not This Time

These fuelish things
The fuel cell is enchanting politicians on both sides of the Atlantic.
It is too soon, though, for them to dream of freedom from fossil fuels.

"Europe and America do not see eye to eye on the question of
how best to generate hydrogen. Europe is putting more emphasis
on renewables; America, by contrast, is keen on the possibility
of deriving hydrogen from fossil fuels."

06-- electromagnetic current & human affairs

Online games increasingly a place for protest, social activism

"Gamers have protested the impending war in Iraq, started news-
papers, gathered charitable donations -- done myriad things they
already do, or wish they could do, in the real world."

Total bummer for Dell dude: Dopey pitchman in pot bust

// including for the EM-related aspects of piecing together
// information of disasters through EM artifacts & blackboxes...

NASA Says It Has Electronic Parts and Piece of Wing

A pioneer in the games people play // story of Atari+ inventor...

Opera turns MSN into a bunch of muppets
Swedish chef reads the news

07-- electromagnetic transportation & communication

// If the system works as described, why not use 'special utility
// poles' for an affordable wireless broadband infrastructure?

Broadband Over Power Lines? 

This truly plug-and-play technology, if proven safe, has the blessings
of federal regulators looking to bolster broadband competition, lower
consumer prices and bridge the digital divide in rural areas.
"Companies have found that turning power lines into a stable, high-speed
system of data transmission is tricky. Network interference and such  
as transformers and surge arrestors have hindered broadband delivery."

At FCC, gadget-freak Powell shapes digital future

Los Angeles Invests in Hybrid Cars

"In one of the largest purchases of hybrid vehicles yet, Toyota Motor
Sales USA has delivered more 130 Prius hybrid electric-gasoline cars
units to the city of Los Angeles.
The city of New York now has the largest fleet of hybrids."

How Hybrid Cars Work

Brainy Radio // software radio and 'coginitive radio'...

"Wireless providers will need machine-driven ways to guide
customers through the panoply of options for so-called fourth-
generation wireless services. "I think this is where 4G is going,"
Says Virginia Polytechnic Institute's Jeffrey Reed."

Is ultrawideband too wide?
The satellite industry and its TV and cable customers say a short-
range wireless standard called ultrawideband threatens to interfere
with many of their broadcasts.

Butterflies offer lessons for robots

"The research showed that butterflies create vortices and double
vortices above the leading edges of their wings by varying the
twist and speed of their strokes to make sudden changes in pitch.
"The familiar, random-looking fluttering of butterflies is really
due to the animals using a wide variety of aerodynamic mechanisms
as they take off, maneuver, maintain steady flight, and land,
said Srygley."

Pushing the Limits of Wireless LANs

"nterprises increasingly are committing to a mobile computing world,
installing wireless local area networks (WLANs) and equipping their
employees with Wi-Fi-enabled devices. Indeed, research firm IDC has
estimated that the global wireless networking market will be worth
US$3.7 billion by 2006. But as more users access wireless networks,
IT departments likely will find themselves pressed to strengthen
and improve their company's signal range."

'Selfish' routers slow the Internet // like Minnesotan auto-traffic...
A little altruism could go a long way in speeding up the Internet.

"Eva Tardos and Tim Roughgarden described their work on Friday in a
talk titled "Selfish Routing and the Price of Anarchy," at the annual
meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science
in Denver. Their presentation was part of a symposium called "Game
Theoretic Aspects of Internet Computation" which explores the
application of economic principles to the Internet."

08-- electromagnetic matter & information

Beauty in the eye of the android

"Artificial intelligence experts in Fife have unveiled a
robotic head which they say can scientifically determine
how attractive women are to men."

// dumb terminals, home servers, and Wi-Fi storage networking?

Storage networking standard wins approval

"Late Tuesday, the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF) approved
the iSCSI standard. SCSI (Small Computer System Interface) is a widely
used standard for connecting hard drives to computers; iSCSI lets that
happen over a network connection such as a company Ethernet network or
even the Internet. iSCSI holds the promise of letting multiple computers
tap into a pool of storage systems."

Application of organic transistors explored

Best picture yet of infant Universe
New results from NASA satellite confirm cosmology theories.

"...The first atoms were beginning to form. And as they did
so, they released light, which travelled through space and
time, arriving at our Solar System as microwaves."

Blue laser format gets green light
Manufacturers looking for a higher-capacity recordable DVD format
will want to mark Feb. 17 on their calendars.

// these are similar to early experiments in telegraphy...

Teleportation goes the distance

"Researchers at the University of Geneva in Switzerland and the  
University          of Aarhus in Denmark have teleported photons from  
one laboratory to another          lab 55 meters away, and their setup  
simulated a distance of two kilometers.          Previous teleportation  
experiments have been limited to short distances          within  

Social networks sturdier than 'Net

"The nodes of social networks are people. People who already have
connections like to associate with other nodes who have connections,
said Mark Newman, now an assistant professor of physics at the
University of Michigan.

"In contrast, non-social networks like the Internet, World Wide Web,
and biological networks are disassortative, meaning highly-connected
nodes tend to connect to nodes that have few connections, said Newman."

09-- electromagnetic trends & inventions

Scientists of Very Small Draw Disciplines Together // EM is the glue...

"Such convergence was given a name late in 2001: NBIC, for
nanotechnology, biotechnology, information technology and
cognitive science. The concept is new enough that researchers
have not yet agreed on a pronunciation for the acronym. Some
say "EN-bick"; some say "NIB-bick."

Gateway connects gadgets to the laptop // ahhh, makes sense...
Aiming to better connect its notebooks with a growing array of digital
devices, Gateway is introducing a portable PC that can read the tiny
flash memory cards used by digital cameras and MP3 players.

"There are two trends that make adding such readers popular.
One is that consumers, especially students, are using such media
to store music files and transfer images from a digital camera.
The other is the removal of the floppy drive from many notebooks
that creates the necessary space for such readers."

Robots That Suck
Have they finally come out with a robot for the rest of us?

10-- electromagnetic weaponry & warfare

What is Optical Camouflage? // makes sense of the news story...

Taking byte from Baghdad // via the TSCM-List...
'Information war' could hobble Iraq, but might become two-edged sword

"There is a good chance the cyber-battle will spread beyond Iraqi
information systems. If the United States launches military action
against Baghdad, we can expect a vicious "war" between Middle
Eastern and western computer hackers."

FBI warns 'patriot hackers'
Leave cyberstrikes against Iraq to the government

Differentiation and Defense
An Agenda for the Nuclear Weapons Program
House Policy Committee
Subcommittee on National Security and Foreign Affairs
February 13, 2003

"Having a Robust Nuclear Earth Penetrator (RNEP) does not make it
more likely that the President would use such a weapon.  The use
of nuclear weapons is one of the gravest decisions any President
can contemplate.  It does make it more probable that that weapon
would destroy a deeply buried target if he had to use it, and,
hence, more likely that we could deter the use of weapons of
mass destruction by an enemy."

11-- electromagnetic business & economics

// on Enron's Key Lay: Believe It or Not!

Company Man to the End, After All

"A review of previously undisclosed personal records — including
years of trading, accounting and other documents — as well as
interviews with Mr. Lay's financial advisers and other witnesses
in the government's investigation indicates that Mr. Lay retained
his faith in the company virtually until its collapse.

Ultimately, people involved in the investigation say, the records
— many of which were provided by people sympathetic to Mr. Lay —
have transformed what appeared to be an open-and-shut case of
criminal insider trading into a more complex mosaic of hubris
and financial recklessness. Indeed, outside experts who were
told of the data said, the case seems far less likely to support
charges of the type once imagined."

Applying Space Technology on Earth // dual-use space exploration...

Google tops branding poll // Coca-Cola has been googled...

// one possible future of the (paper) printing industry...

Report: Silicon wafers on the rise
The square inches of silicon wafer shipped worldwide rose sharply
in 2002, while revenue grew at a modest rate, according to a new
report from a semiconductor industry group.

12-- electromagnetic art & artifacts

A Glimpse of a Future in a New Kind of Light // LEDs...
// is it accurate to call these diodes, 'microchip' lights?

"Light bulbs, which lighting experts deride as heaters that happen
to give off visible light, work by forcing electricity through a
metal filament in a vacuum. About 6 percent of the energy ends up
as light. Today's light chips are up to five times as efficient."

How Electric Guitars Work

Turntable U? In D.J.'s Hands Professor Sees an Instrument

"For several years Stephen Webber, a professor of music
production and engineering, has been trying to introduce
a course on hip-hop turntable techniques into the Berklee
curriculum. He designed a program of study that would teach
students the technical and musical basics of turntablism,
which involves manipulating a record back and forth against
the needle to create percussive scratches, jagged beats
and abstract sounds."

// for those interested in digital retouching in fashion...

Magazines: Digital subterfuge at the newsstand

Reconciling interiors: The screen as installation

NY bans use of cell phones at public performances

Maximum Overdrive // Computers as customized muscle cars...
Feel the need for processing speed? Welcome to the world of
overclocking, where silicon lives fast, dies young, and leaves
a good-looking corpse.

"Every computer has a clock that beats out the working cadence of
the CPU and the components that feed it. Each time the clock ticks
- 2.26 billion times per second before Sylvia stepped on the gas
- the CPU spits out another calculation. The quicker the clock
goes, the quicker the computer runs. A pumped-up PC perks up any

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