~e; Electromagnetic News & Views #58

From human being <human@electronetwork.org>
Date Sun, 2 Nov 2003 00:19:39 -0600

Electromagnetic News & Views -- #58

00) Electronetwork.org Commentary (11/02/2003)

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

00) --commentary--  mapping theme...

The idea of a direct current (DC) based home wiring system
has been contemplated further. If a house has AC power, the
AC appliances and lamps will not likely use a transformer or
an AC adapter, which are like heavy blocks at the end of plugs.
Each one of these blocks is 'tuned' to one specific piece of
electronic circuitry, and to use the wrong adapter may cause
hardware failure (or blown mini-fuses, it is guessed). If a new
dwelling system were to operate on DC, the integration of
power from solar and wind systems would be much easier
as these need to be adapted to the reigning AC systems in
use, which is part of the cost involved, and the complexity.
What might a DC-based wiring system involve? Maybe i
would be based on a new technical standard for 'adaptive
wiring' and outlets, ideally based in a different scenario than
buried within the walls. One might be able to have a plug of
a certain shape or kind which fits into a universal outlet, then
goes through a routine to configure itself before engaging the
power system, and the home-based power diagnostic system
would be able to adapt to the load of the device, and send
only the amount of power needed for the device, calculating
its requirements, and somehow separate this from other loads
in the wiring, if through multiple wires or some sub-system.
This area seems to be a huge bottleneck in electronics design,
the simple plug and outlet, and how things interact with these,
and how it may affect the design and development of products,
and their evolution or lack of innovation given an upper-limit
to what can be done in the current way of designing things.

01) --top stories--

Powerful Geomagnetic Storm Strikes Earth // another solar flare...

[and] Japan Loses 2nd Satellite to Solar Flare

	'The [solar] flare was believed to produce a particle cloud 13 times  
larger than Earth. The resulting geomagnetic storm was expected to be  
among the most powerful of its kind.

For Media-Savvy Tots, TV And DVD Compete With ABCs

	'The effect of such high-intensity media exposure is unclear,  
researchers said, but what is clear is that the under-6 set is becoming  
far more media-savvy than anyone expected.' ... '... a quarter of  
children under 2 have televisions in their bedrooms. Two-thirds of kids  
under 2  use some kind of screen media (computer, DVD, television) on a  
typical day, for an average of about two hours a day. And for children  
under the age of 6, the average of two hours a day spent with screen  
media is more than three times the amount of time they spend reading or  
being read to.  The foundation noted that the study is the first of its  
kind and that more research is needed.'

// Not sure about the exact statistics, though once
// 'sabotage' seemed to be an issue with power grids
// prior to 9-11 terrorism and the Department of
// Homeland Security, as a concern (maybe due to
// vulnerability of systems, or special knowledge).
// this may be a low-tech approach but should the
// lines go down, the effect is the same, a do-it-
// yourself power outage of Enronomic proportions...

FBI Investigating Sabotage of West Coast Power Lines

[and] Acts of Sabotage Involving High Voltage Transmission Towers

02-- electromagnetic health & safety

Brain fakes it -- Nerve-cell activity when eyes are shut reveals
internal views of the world. // the original virtual reality...

	'When the animals' eyes were closed, researchers recorded spontaneous  
patterns of neuronal activity similar to those evoked by real scenes.  
Strikingly, this happened in the primary visual cortex - a region  
thought to record visual stimuli passively.' .. 'Like a detuned  
television screen flashing up occasional pictures, the resting cortex  
spontaneously produces clear maps of the outside world. It is as if the  
eyes were actually looking at objects.' .. 'This is not dreaming.  
Because it happens so low in the normal information processing chain,  
it is almost as if the mental images had sprung right in front of the  

solar flares and possible effects on humans // via nettime-l

Tech Addicts Need Textual Healing 

Field Management Services: // services...
Magnetic Field Mitigation and Sheilding

	'The rapid spread of new technology has raised the level of concern  
about electric and magnetic field  (EMF) interference and has greatly  
increased the consequences of that interference.  Substantial research  
, funded by the electric utility industry and others, has improved the  
characterization and management of extremely low frequency (ELF)  
magnetic fields from power systems, particularly from sources inside  
buildings, like transformer vaults, switch gear and bus ducts.   
However, increasing sensitivity of computer monitors, medical devices  
and other electronic equipment to ELF magnetic fields requires field  
management and suppression technology that achieves substantially lower  
values than available through conventional techniques.' .. 'Most  
recently, real estate and architectural professionals have demanded  
preemptive design of low EMF buildings - creating buildings that are  
intrinsically immune to electromagnetic interference from internal and  
external sources.'

03-- electromagnetic trash & treasure

Groups question voting machines' accuracy // e-vote fraud

Calculations illustrate fossil-fuel crisis
Plant-to-oil equations point up unsustainable profligacy.

04-- electromagnetic security & surveillance

Satellites help slash Karachi car thefts, kidnaps // via macsurfer.com

	'With the click of a computer mouse, a satellite tracking system  
allows remote operators to seize control of the stolen vehicle, bring  
it grinding to a halt, and snap its locks shut as police swoop in.' ...  
'It can monitor employees wanting to use cars for personal errands or  
who waste fuel by braking too aggressively, over-revving or speeding.'  
.. 'Trakker can record a vehicle's movements and even excessive engine  
idling -- an indication a driver may be using fuel-guzzling  
air-conditioning without permission.'

Microsoft Patches Its Patches

Nanoparticles may help fight fraud // EMF barcodes/database...
Magnetic barcodes could provide counterfeit-proof tagging.

	'The barcode lines contain atoms of permalloy, a mixture of nickel and  
iron. They are printed in a similar way to electronic circuits - each  
printing arranges their constituent magnetic particles in a different  
pattern.' .. 'As each pattern is unique, it has a unique magnetic  
field. This can be measured, recorded and later checked to ensure that  
a barcode is genuine. "This is the nearest anyone can get to something  
that can't be forged," claims Cowburn....'

05-- electromagnetic power & energy

Crack 'n Glow - How Light Sticks Work

Jail for head of Russia's largest oil co

Congress Moves Toward Mandating Rules for Electricity

	'... if the leadership gets its way, Congress will be voting before  
anyone can say whether violations of the existing rules, which are  
voluntary and set by an industry group, had anything to do with the  
power failure that  left tens of millions of people in the dark from  
Michigan and Ontario to Connecticut.' ... 'The letter also called on  
electric companies to ensure that operators know not only that they  
have the authority to intentionally black out some customers in  
emergencies, but also that they are "expected to exercise that  
authority to prevent cascading." That was a major lesson of the 1965  
blackout, experts say...'

How Atom Smashers Work -

How Black Lights Work -

How Electromagnets Work -

JPL Researchers Unveil Superconductor-Based Light Detector //  

	'The researchers designed their device to register the slight changes  
that occur when an incoming photon -- the basic unit of electromagnetic  
radiation -- interacts with the material and affects the Cooper pairs.  
The device can be made sensitive enough to detect individual photons,  
as well as their wavelengths or color.' ... 'Measurements of the  
radiation are of tremendous interest in cosmology today because of  
extremely faint variations in the intensity of the radiation that form  
an intricate pattern over the entire sky.'

06-- electromagnetic current & human affairs

Voyager at 90 AU

	'The Voyager journey of discovery continues. After traveling through  
space for more than 26 years, voyager 1 is approaching a new milestone.  
On November 5, 2003, the spacecraft will be 90 astronomical units (AU)  
from the Sun.  90 AU is the equivalent of about 8.4 billion miles or  
13.5 billion kilometers.'

// hilarious story related to the environment created within
// EM media through politics today. gonzo-journalist style...

Hell and Back - Bells, bugging and Brian Williams changing
colors at the Democratic debate. // * ADULT content *

07-- electromagnetic transport & communication

How Ultrasound Works -

Birth of the internet // timeline

Bluetooth spawns a new 'sport' // bluejacking...

A Shutterbug's Guide to Meting Out the Megapixels // guide...

	'Digital cameras made for amateurs usually have between two and five  
megapixels, though cameras with eight megapixels or more will be  
available soon.' .. 'Those numbers are no match for 35-millimeter film,  
which has a resolution equivalent to 20 or 30 megapixels, but digital  
cameras can nonetheless produce excellent images.'

Improved Remote Mapping Of Disaster Zones:
Columbia Researchers Develop "Fingerprinting"
Techniqhes For Synthetic Aperture Radar Mapping

08-- electromagnetic matter & information


	'The National Center for Supercomputing Applications presents VIAS, a  
domain specific information retrieval, archival, and processing system.  
Specifically designed to provide continually updated information on  
highly dynamic topics, VIAS is ideally suited for use with volatile  
information sources like the World Wide Web. It continually crawls the  
Web, monitors mailing lists and USENET newsgroups, and archives all of  
the information it finds on its topics of interest. However, VIAS goes  
beyond simple archival of the knowledge it finds, to the autonomous  
generation of new knowledge and automatic categorization of existing  
knowledge. A library of state-of-the-art proprietary metadata  
algorithms is continuously executed against the archives, providing a  
rich source of new knowledge to be queried or viewed in realtime.'

09-- electromagnetic trends & inventions

There's a Sucker Born in Every Medial Prefrontal Cortex // MRIs...

	'Measuring brand influence might seem like an unusual activity for a  
neuroscientist, but Montague is just one of a growing breed of  
researchers who are applying the methods of the neurology lab to the  
questions of the advertising world.'

Sit tight: Latest computer chairs take seat as high-tech tools

Microsoft gives an early look at next Windows // DATA-based. +indigo

	'At the heart of the next Windows will be a new format for storing  
data that Microsoft has worked on intermittently for more than a  
decade. Rather than each software application saving information in a  
different format, a new standardised file system known as WinFS will  
create a single, unified system.' .. 'That means users will be able to  
find any information on their own PCs or across their corporate  
networks with a single search, then collate different types of data,  
whether in the form of text documents, spread sheets, video or audio  
recordings, Microsoft executives said.'

How MRI Works -

Nokia is the first European manufacturer to publicly announce they will  
integrate digital TV into next generation handsets.

10-- electromagnetic weaponry & warfare

EM-related quote: Rockets Hit Baghdad Hotel Where Wolfowitz Staying

	'Wolfowitz and senior aides were staying on the 12th floor  when the  
rockets slammed into the hotel several floors below.' .. 'Members of  
his party, who had been dressing ahead of a breakfast meeting on  
electricity, calmly descended a stairwell  past thickening smoke and  
blood stains...' .. '"Based on what we have heard in security briefings  
it may  have been that someone set these things up last night and then   
detonated them remotely," a senior defense official told  reporters at  
the scene.'

"35 or 40" countries able to make nuclear weapons: IAEA chief

11-- electromagnetic business & economics

// learned about embedded processors while visiting the Intel
// Museum in San Jose, highly recommended to visit. a great
// exhibit on the varieties of processors and functions, then
// it dawned that there was a vast swath of devices that had
// processing power, yet were not fully 'open' computers, all
// around, already, in daily environments. at the same time,
// nearby was Wind River Systems, an embedded systems company
// who worked on the embedded systems of the Mars lander/rover.

Microsoft gets deeper into gizmos // embedded systems...
Microsoft's roadmap to the future includes side trips
into casino gambling and sewing-machine design.

EM-Headline: Bush to sign electronic banking bill

// this is a no-brainer, IMO. see PDA student computing article
// at electronetwork.org/articles/psc/  for more information...

Reading, writing, revenue for PDAs?
When the Newport-Mesa Unified School District was awarded federal  
funding for classroom technology this summer, adminstrators took the  
unusual step of buying handhelds instead of PCs.

	'"Once you're established in this community, there is a very high  
degree of loyalty--it's yours to lose, once you're in," said Ray Boggs,  
an analyst at IDC who covers technology for the education market.'

12-- electromagnetic artworks & artifacts

An Ohio Bicentennial Exhibtion of
Historic and Contemporary Lighting Devices.
EXHIBIT September 26 - January 4, 2004

	'Illumination 1803 - 2003 exhibits both plain and fancy lighting        
                                                    devices that were  
used in American homes from poor to the rich. The progression of  
lighting fuels, technology and design is documented, while dispelling  
modern misconceptions and myths about early lamps.' .. 'The exhibition  
explains how early lighting devices work and the time and effort  
necessary to operate and maintain them - information that was common  
knowledge for our ancestors, but today has been virtually lost.  
Curators for the exhibition are Dan Mattausch, Dan Sohn, Russell  

hotriculture unit | flower installation by Darko Fritz
26 . 10 - 16 . 11 . 2003 . Zadar . Croatia

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