Archive | July, 2010

Double Rainbow!!

20 Jul

Check out this video of “Double Rainbow”!!

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Plane flies for 82 hours continuously!

20 Jul

An unmanned solar aircraft has smashed the world record for continuous flight.

The “Zephyr” plane, developed by UK defense technology company, QinetiQ, took off from the U.S. Army’s Yuma Proving Ground in Arizona on July 9. Seven days on, it was still flying high.

Zephyr program director, Jon Saltmarsh told CNN: “It’s extremely exciting. What we now have is an eternal plane. It has the same amount of fuel at the start of one day as it does at the start of another.”

The aircraft has already doubled its own unofficial record of over 82 hours and smashed the previous world record for unmanned flight of 30 hours and 24 minutes, set in 2001 by U.S. aerospace company, Northrop Grumman’s RQ-4A Global I.

The Zephyr project was conceived in 2001 and secured funding from the UK’s Ministry of Defense (MOD) three years later. After several prototypes, Saltmarsh believes QinetiQ has now created an aircraft that demonstrates genuine military utility.

“It has the persistence to stay up there for long periods of time and it carries payloads that are doing things that the military will find useful.”

QinetiQ also says it will save the military money, performing many of the tasks currently carried out by manned aircraft.

Weighing just 53 kilograms (117 pounds), the plane has a wingspan of 22.5 meters (74 feet) and a wing area of around 30 square meters (323 square feet), the top side of which is covered in solar panels thinner than a sheet of paper.

The panels are rigged up to lithium-sulphur batteries which power the plane at night.

QinetiQ began building the latest Zephyr model 18 months ago and hope to start full scale military trials a year from now.

The company says that Zephyr will also find a civilian use helping communications in disaster relief situations, as well as forest fire monitoring.

“You can sit above a fire, with heat sensor technology and identify hotspots very quickly,” Saltmarsh said.

Zephyr shows no sign of running out of power anytime soon, and Saltmarsh is hopeful it will stay in the air for another seven days,when the plane will finally return to Earth.

Courtesy:CNN

Google’s App Inventor

19 Jul

Google has released a new tool,”App Inventor” which facilitates the users to build applications! “Programming is NOT a Rocket Science anymore! This tool enables the user with zero programming skills to build applications!

You visually design the way the app looks and use blocks to specify the app’s behavior.

The App Inventor team has created blocks for just about everything you can do with an Android phone, as well as blocks for doing “programming-like” stuff– blocks to store information, blocks for repeating actions, and blocks to perform actions under certain conditions. There are even blocks to talk to services like Twitter.

Iphone 4

19 Jul


Features of Iphone 4:
1>Dual camera on front and back of the phone.
2>Introducing “Video Calling”.
3>Highest Resolution display ever on a phone. 364 Pixels per inch,you get 4 times the pixels as before. This is achieved by “Optical Lamination”.
4>Enables “Multi Tasking”. You can easily and quickly switch between applications.
5>Ability to create Folders. This feature is also upgraded in iphone 3GS recently.
6>Multiple thread emails are categorised under single email.
7>Camera -5 MP to capture images. Camera is also facilitated to capture 720P High Definition video. You can also edit your video.
8>Built in A4 chip which facilitates remarkable speed and efficiency!
9>Battery size is increased which delivers 40% more talktime.

Check this video!

I-PAD!

19 Jul

All I can say is IPAD is a Cross between “Amazon Kindle” and “Iphone 3GS”!!

Since I own both Kindle and Iphone 3GS, I did not see any necessity to possess I-PAD! 🙂

Check this video for I-PAD features!!

EPIC-India’s Own Browser!

16 Jul

Bangalore-based Hidden Reflex today launched Epic, the first web-browser targeting Indian audience powered by Mozilla platform. The browser has been created by a team of Indian engineers.

Features of EPIC:

1>One of the features of Epic’s India sidebar, which supports Indian content, is to provide users access to latest national and regional news from popular publications, live television channels, videos, stock quotes, live cricket scores, top music albums, and local events.

2>Users can also choose from 1500+ customized Indian themes and wallpapers.

3>It also enables user to write in twelve Indian languages on any webpage or on Write, Epic’s free built-in word processor.

4>Epic also incorporates free antivirus scanning and healing, the only browser to offer this service.

5>Epic is the first browser to have a suite of sidebar applications to improve multi-tasking and productivity.

6>Pre-installed applications include communication apps for Facebook, Orkut, Gmail, entertainment apps such as a Picture-in-Picture Video Sidebar and Games, and utilities such as File Backup, My Computer, a To-Do list, and Maps.

Check my comic on EPIC: http://swathipradeepworld.wordpress.com/2010/07/16/epic/

Quasars

16 Jul

Quasars, the extraordinary luminous objects in the distant universe, are thought to be powered by supermassive black holes in the cores of galaxies.

A single quasar could be a thousand times brighter than an entire galaxy of a hundred billion stars, which makes studies of their host galaxies exceedingly difficult.
Astronomers, from the California Institute of Technology (Caltech) and Ecole Polytechnique Federale de Lausanne (EPFL) in Switzerland, who made this discovery said it would provide a novel way to understand these host galaxies.

“It is a bit like staring into bright car headlights and trying to discern the colour of their rims,” said Frederic Courbin of EPFL, the lead author of the study, published in the journal Astronomy & Astrophysics.

Using gravitational lensing, he said, “we now can measure the masses of these quasar host galaxies and overcome this difficulty”.
According to Einstein’s general theory of relativity, if a large mass (such as a big galaxy or a cluster of galaxies) is placed along the line of sight to a distant galaxy, the part of the light that comes from the galaxy will split.
Because of this, an observer on Earth will see two or more close images of the now-magnified background galaxy, the scientists said.

The first such gravitational lens was discovered in 1979, and produced an image of a distant quasar that was magnified and split by a foreground galaxy.
Hundreds of cases of gravitationally lensed quasars are now known. But, until the current research, carried out at W M Keck Observatory on Hawaii’s Mauna Kea, the reverse process — a background galaxy being lensed by the massive host galaxy of a foreground quasar — had never been detected.

Using gravitational lensing to measure the masses of distant galaxies independent of their brightness was suggested in 1936 by Caltech astrophysicist Fritz Zwicky, and the technique has been used effectively for this purpose in recent years. Until now, it had never been applied to measure the masses of quasar hosts themselves.

To find the cosmic lens, the astronomers searched a large database of quasar spectra obtained by the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS) to select candidates for “reverse” quasar-galaxy gravitational lensing.

Follow-up observations of the best candidate — quasar SDSS J0013+1523, located about 1.6 billion light years away — using the W M Keck Observatory’s 10-meter telescope, confirmed that the quasar was indeed magnifying a distant galaxy, located about 7.5 billion light years away.

“We were delighted to see that this idea actually works,” said Georges Meylan, a professor of physics and leader of the EPFL team.
“This discovery demonstrates the continued utility of gravitational lensing as an astrophysical tool.”
“Quasars are valuable probes of galaxy formation and evolution,” said Prof S George Djorgovski, leader of the Caltech team.
Furthermore, he added, “discoveries of more such systems will help us understand better the relationship between quasars and the galaxies which contain them, and their coevolution.”

Information Courtesy:Deccan Herald

ATM gives Cash via Finger Vein Scan

6 Jul
The  ATM runs on the latest in "finger vein" technology, with an infrared light detecting a unique pattern of micro-veins.
Tired of swiping your ATM card into the ATM slots,punching in the password to derive cash from ATM?
Now,there is an ATM developed which gives cash via “Finger Vein Scan”!
Read on..
The digit-scanning ATM, introduced in the Polish capital of Warsaw, runs on the latest in “finger vein” technology — an authentication system developed by Japanese tech giant Hitachi. The company says that an infrared light is passed through the finger to detect a unique pattern of micro-veins beneath the surface – which is then matched with a pre-registered profile to verify an individual’s identity.
“This is a substantially more reliable technique than using fingerprints,” Peter Jones, Hitachi’s head of security and solutions in Europe. Unlike fingerprints, which leave a trace and can be potentially reproduced, finger veins are impossible to replicate, according to Jones, because they are beneath the surface of the skin.
Information Courtesy:CNN