~e; Electromagnetic News & Views #31

From human being <human@electronetwork.org>
Date Sat, 14 Jun 2003 10:57:11 -0500

Electromagnetic News & Views -- #31

00) Electronetwork.org Commentary (6/14/2003)

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-- none

01) --top stories--

Icy claim that water has memory // thermoluminescence glow...
	"The paper's author, Swiss chemist Louis Rey, is using  
thermoluminescence to study the structure of solids. The technique  
involves bathing a chilled sample with radiation. When the sample is  
warmed up, the stored energy is released as light in a pattern that  
reflects the atomic structure of the sample."

Antennas Get Smart // snippet, rest for paid subscribers...
Adaptive antenna arrays can vastly improve wireless communications  by  
connecting mobile users with virtual wires

[possibly related] INVENTING THE INTERNET AGAIN by George Gilder

	"To conceive of Baran's model of wireless, begin by thinking of the  
human eye and comparing it to a radio. Like a radio, the eye is  
essentially a device for converting photons into electrons, pulses of  
electromagnetic energy into electrical currents. Geared for visible  
light rather than radio frequency signals, the eye is a receiving  
antenna." 	"How is it that your eyes command 350 terahertz of bandwidth  
and your FM radio around 20 megahertz, 17 million times less? It is not  
chiefly the special powers of the retina and other optical faculties.  
Radio antennas can collect an even larger span of frequencies. The  
difference is mostly behind the receiver.  Backing up the eyes is the  
processing power of some 10 billion neurons and trillions of synapses.  
Backing up the radio antenna is a lot of fixed- analog hardware. Eyes  
are smart and aerobatic while the radio is dumb and blind."	"In Baran's  
vision, the future of wireless is the replacement of current dumb  
radios by smart digital radios that resemble eyes. Coupling radio  
technology with computer technology, the antenna can acquire a brain."

// thought a drawback may be increased humidity levels, too...

Ballyhooed hydrogen fuel cells may have environmental drawback

	"Scientists say the new technology could lead to greater destruction  
of the ozone layer that protects Earth from cancer-causing ultraviolet  

Nasa gives go-ahead for nuclear mission to outer planets

	"Project Prometheus, named after the Greek god who gave fire to  
humanity, will concentrate on nuclear propulsion because it is  
considered the only form of power that can meet the mission's  

02-- electromagnetic health & medicine

Digital Cell Phones May Confound Pacemakers // !!!

	"The new generation of digital mobile phones can interfere with many  
types of heart pacemakers, claims a new study in the Institute of  
Physics journal Physics in Medicine and Biology. Pacemakers can confuse  
mobile-phone signals with the heart's own electrical signals, causing a  

Can an electronic device replace damaged brain circuits?

	"In the experiment, millions of neurons embedded in the tissue will  
transmit their electrical impulses to attached electrodes. If all goes  
according to plan, the electrodes should intercept the signals and  
reroute them to the chip, which fills in for the damaged neural  
circuits to process the data and shoot it back to other neurons."

Hand-held scanner designed to detect cancer // drudgereport.com

	"The scanner contains an antenna that produces a beam of microwaves  
that vary in frequency from 400 to 1350 megahertz. According to  
Vedruccio and his team, tumours generate strong interference at about  
400 megahertz.
	A computer details the amount of interference at different  

Lasers take 3D brain scans
Infrared light probes tissue a slice at a time.

	"The laser sweeps through the sample, taking a digitized image of its  
surface. Then a second laser burns away scanned tissue and the process  
begins anew. When the whole sample has been scanned, all that remains  
is a digital, three-dimensional picture of the chunk of rat brain. "The  
sample goes from brains to bits," he says."

Researchers Combine Electronics With Living Cell To Create Potential
Toxicity Sensor // e-resistance of MEMs device measures cell death

	"...researchers have found a way to tap into the telltale electrical  
signals that mark cell death, opening the door to the creation of a  
"canary on a chip" that can be used to sound the alarm of a biochemical  
attack or test drug toxicity on human tissue."

GIS Technology Helps Link Premenopausal Breast Cancer With Place Of  
Birth, Residence At Time Of Menarche // location-location-location

Electromagnetic waves linked to children's brain tumors // clip.

03-- electromagnetic trash & treasure

For sale: Sputnik 1, original condition  // $39k on eBAY...
Car dealer offers Soviet satellite with no miles on the clock.

Looting Leaves Iraq's Oil Industry in Ruins

Dark Tip: Build an Xshok Controller // D.I.Y. electroshock (gizmodo)
Is the 'rumble' feature on your Xbox controller too wimpy for you?  
Kevin Rose spices things up with electricity.

04-- electromagnetic security & surveillance

US cybersecurity agency goes live // bedankt *

	"The new authority has divided the tasks of the previously disparate  
agencies into three divisions. 	...One division will identify risks and  
help reduce vulnerabilities posed to the US government's cyber assets,   
and it will coordinate with the private sector to protect America's  
on-line infrastructure. The NCSD will also oversee a consolidated Cyber  
Security Tracking, Analysis & Response Center (CSTARC), which will  
detect and respond to "Internet events." The third arm of the unit will  
create cybersecurity awareness and education programs, in partnership  
with consumers, businesses, governments, academia and international  

	'...without cybersecurity, there is no physical security..."

U.S. Says Stun Guns Viable for Airline Security

Radio ID tags get Microsoft backing // information management.

	"The inventory-tracking chips are expected to include a kill switch  
before they end up in products."

Peter Cochrane's Uncommon Sense: All-seeing technology
How many times have you been on candid camera today?

Anti-virus fight gets tough : As computer viruses change, the business  
of protecting people and companies from them is changing too.

Student hacks school, erases class files // via RisksDigest

Smart airline seat detects shifty passengers

	"And if the seat reveals the passenger may be in a state of high  
anxiety, the display can discreetly alert the cabin crew. They can then  
assess whether the passenger presents a risk: are they simply  
frightened of flying? An air-rager in the making? Or a hijacker about  
to make their move?"

05-- electromagnetic power & energy

A philosophical investigation into Enron
As lawyers pick over the carcass of the energy giant which became a  
byword for corporate greed and mismanagement, what could Wittgenstein  
teach us about its spectacular rise and fall? Quite a lot, actually,  
writes Donald MacKenzie in our latest LRB essay

US faces critical gas shortage // "the other energy crisis"

[not unrelated...] Energy bill seeks to revive nuclear power

High Hopes for Electric Net
		"The first world conference of electric companies, equipment makers  
and others gathered for a day this week in efforts to make the Internet  
even more ubiquitous by channeling it through power lines into homes."

// in a sense, this could be seen as increasingly important for
// R&D gains, as laser weaponry and new weapons systems are relying
// on laser technology, from satellites to aircraft to ground-based,
// to telecom, and power generation experiments it is imagined. it
// may thus be equivalent to world competition in supercomputing...

National Ignition Facility Project Sets Records For Laser Performance

Calpine Sees Power Market Upturn in 2005, Beyond

Hydrogen's Future Up in the Air // ozone layer...

	"Their study says that if hydrogen fuel replaced fossil fuels entirely  
it could be expected that 10 percent to 20 percent of the hydrogen  
would leak from pipelines, storage facilities, processing plants and  
fuel cells in cars and at power plants."

06-- electromagnetic current & human affairs

PlayStation driver turns killer

	"A TEENAGER who had only ever driven a car in PlayStation games killed  
a woman during his first time behind the wheel."

Digital media wars heat up // via macsurfer.com

07-- electromagnetic transportation & communication

Telephone technology page // via TSCM-L. motherlode of info...

How DSL Works

The Man Pushing Faster Internet Access in U.S. // Broadband Policy

	"For telecommunications companies, making the investment in broadband  
access is not without risk. The costs for building high-speed networks  
are enormous, whether through wires on the ground or through wireless  
networks. Moreover, the companies must market the concept to consumers  
who are already paying monthly fees for home telephone, cellphone and  
cable television service and may not want to pay yet more for  
high-speed access. To mitigate the risk, the industry has turned to the  
government for help, and Mr. Pitsch has led the charge."

[question is when/if notebooks can be ready for dual-use HDTVs]

Sony plugs TV into Vaio notebooks // TV + DVR + remote control.

How Microcontrollers Work

// now, if only they can make this into a window, also.... (gizmodo)

Philips' Mirror TV Reflects New Era in Consumer Technologies

World's Smallest Robot // via gizmodo.net

	"The microbot has 8 kilobytes of memory, along with a simple  
temperature sensor. But future versions could be outfitted with  
anything from chemical sniffers to a miniaturized camera or microphone.  
Lightweight, mobile and small enough to be virtually invisible,  
specialized microbots may eventually perform tasks like searching for  
bombs. They could even be pressed into duty as mechanical spies that  
wait until their target opens his safe to take out secret papers, then  
climb up behind him to quickly snap a photo before scurrying back to  
their insect-size hiding place..."

// fascinated as a non-cellphone user that now there are
// wireless cards available, so if one has a cellphone but
// no monthly calling plan, they can activate the phone for
// so many minutes within a finite time. thought the below
// article on 'smartness' may be related to e-cash or credit,
// via phone commands, which would make sense if secure, yet
// there is also the holy grail of 'smartness' which instead
// may focus on environment aware devices, not phones per se,
// and which centralized R&D efforts & standards might help.

Smart cellphone would spend your money // credit-phone...

08-- electromagnetic matter & information

How Oscillators Work

In Gold Ink on a Chip, the World's Tiniest Book // biblechip.

Flash memory breakthrough // 2-4 gigabit flashchips

Big Bang 'soup recipe' confirmed // EM or charged ylem (?)

	"A microsecond after the Big Bang, when the exploding fireball of the  
newborn Universe was only a few kilometres across, all matter existed  
in a special state. 	"The basic building blocks of matter - quarks and  
electrons - floated freely in an incredibly hot, dense soup. As the  
Universe grew and cooled, the quarks bound together into the protons  
and neutrons that abound today."

Who's In The Loop? USC Tool Maps The Email Labyrinth // eArchivarius

	"Researchers at the University of Southern California have created a  
new tool for organizing and visualizing collections of electronic mail.  
It is designed to help legal researchers, historians, archivists, and  
others faced with challenges in dealing wtih large email archives."

09-- electromagnetic trends & inventions

Bell tolling for PNG graphics format? -- A patent underlying one of the  
Web's most popular graphics formats is set to expire later this month,  
raising the question of whether a rival, open format, created as a  
royalty-free alternative, will become obsolete.

Faster Wi-Fi Standard Means Biz // IEEE approves 802.11g

10-- electromagnetic weaponry & warfare

FBI says cell phones triggered Saudi blast
	"The bulletin includes details of how a cell phone can become part of  
a deadly bomb. It includes use of a battery, a switch, an initiation  
device such as a match or a light bulb, conducting wires and explosives.
	When the phone receives an incoming call, "the electrical power from  
the telephone's ringer or vibrator activates the bomb's circuitry"  
causing an explosion."

Tough Talking for Marines in Iraq  // microwave, radio, satellite+

	"To share text messages and digital files, one unit of the 1st Marine  
Expeditionary Force would have the Blue Force Tracker communications  
system. Another would have the MDACT (Mobile Data Automated  
Communications Terminal) program. The two have the same functions,  
essentially. But they can't talk to each other. So when the Marines  
sent reconnaissance photos to their commanders, they often would use a  
courier with a Memorex hard drive to carry the pictures by hand to  

Pentagon to Use New Net Protocol // thanks *

11-- electromagnetic business & economics

EU ends free Internet tax ride

THE WIRED 40 [& unlucky 13] // most all in electromagnetic .biz
Meet the masters of innovation, technology, and strategic vision - 40  
companies that are reshaping the global economy.

12-- electromagnetic art & artifacts

// this is applicable to electronics and new media artworks,
// in that there may be various ways to engage works, related
// to specific science, physics, optics, concepts, aesthetics,
// materials, iconography, history, etc. for instance, went to
// a talk on 'iconography of electricity' recently and had the
// idea of still lifes of computer motherboards, RAM, and video-
// cards, along with floppy disks, zip disks, and CD-Roms. else,
// historical styled paintings of artists/inventors with imagery
// of their electronics works in the painting, as the rich used
// to do. say, an artist with a computer in the background with
// a painted screenshot of their recent work, alongside a few
// of their objects, reflecting the context of the new works.

Attracting, engaging museum-goers
Guided by their science cousins,
art museums offer hands-on excitement


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