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! ūüôā

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

Scientists create Artificial Life in Lab

21 May

Three Indian-origin scientists are part of a team that has for the first time created a synthetic cell, controlled by man-made genetic instructions, which can also reproduce itself.

The 24-member team included Sanjay Vashee, Radha Krishnakumar and Prashanth P. Parmar.”We call it the first synthetic cell,” said genomics pioneer Craig Venter, who oversaw the project. “These are very much real cells.”

Developed at a cost of $30 million by the researchers at J. Craig Venter Institute, the experimental one-cell organism opens the way to manipulation of life on a previously unattainable scale, the Wall Street Journal reported.

According to experts, scientists have been altering DNA piecemeal for many years, producing genetically engineered plants and animals, but the ability to craft an entire organism offers a new power over life.

“This is literally a turning point in the relationship between man and nature,” said molecular biologist Richard Ebright at Rutgers University who wasn’t involved in the project.
“It has the potential to transform genetic engineering. The research is going to explode once you can create designer genomes,” David Magnus, director of the Stanford University Center for Biomedical Ethics, was quoted as saying.

The new cell, a form of bacteria, was conceived solely as a demonstration project, though several biologists were certain that the laboratory technique used to birth it would soon be applied to other strains of bacteria with commercial potential.

Brain Mapping,Narco-analysis,polygraph tests

7 May

On May 5th,Supreme Court of India said “No” to forced “Brain Mapping”,”Narco-Analysis” and “Polygraph” tests on victims! It said,these tests can be conducted only after procuring consent from the victims.

Before,we argue on this ruling,lets take a sneek-peek on the definition and uses of these tests:
These tests, which are often used as aid during investigations by probe agencies, are different from each other, but are all aimed at collecting vital information.

1>Narco-analysis is a controlled administration of intravenous hypnotic medications called truth drugs on a suspect to procure vital information.

2>A polygraph, popularly referred to as a lie detector, is an instrument that measures and records several physiological indices such as blood pressure, pulse, respiration and breathing rhythms and skin conductivity while a suspect is asked a series of questions.

Deceptive answers are said to produce physiological responses that can be differentiated from those associated with non-deceptive answers.

3>Brain-mapping is a comprehensive analysis of brainwave frequency bandwidths. In this test, forensic experts apply unique neuroscience techniques to find out if a suspect’s brain recognises things from a crime scene which an innocent person’s brain will have no knowledge of.

In brain-mapping, sensors are attached to the suspect’s head and he or she is made to sit in front of a computer screen. The suspect is then made to see images or hear sounds.

The sensors monitor electrical activity in the brain and register certain waves which are generated only if the suspect has any connection with the stimulus (image or sound).

Information Courtesy:Deccan Herald

Time Travel

5 May

Last week while switching tv channels,we came across a documentary “Stephen Hawking’s Universe” being aired on Discovery Channel.

In this documentary,Stephen Hawking explained how “Time Travel” is possible! The facts and justifications provided by him were enthralling. I would love to share the same with you all.

What is “Time Travel”?
Time travel is the concept of traveling forward and backward to different points in time, much as we do through space.

Time is a fourth dimension. The key to time travel into the future is to think of time as a river. As you look across a river you will notice that in some places it is moving faster than in other places. Time does the same thing. Time speeds up on a satellite orbiting the earth by one third of a billionth of a second every day.

Albert Einstein realized that matter drags on time and slows it down like the slow part of a river. So the reason time is slower on the surface of the earth than on the satellite is because earth has so much mass. The heavier the object, the more it drags on time.

Stephen Hawking explains “Time Travel” can be possible in 2 methods:


1>Black Holes: He says “Black Holes” act as “Natural Time Machine”. Assume that you are travellling in a spacecraft across the “Black Hole” [lets assume that the space craft is not sucked into the black hole], then when the space craft orbits the black hole,then the travellers inside the space craft will be travelling in time.

The time inside the space craft will be exactly 1/2 of the time on earth. Suppose this space craft rotates around the black hole for 10 days and returns back to the earth, then the time on earth would be 20 days.
This means that people returning from the space craft to the earth will be entering the “Future Earth”.

The main reason behind this concept is “As mass increases,time slows down”. Since “Black Hole” is an extremely denser object, it slows down the time inside the spacecraft orbiting the “Black Hole”

2>Building a Train and accelerating it to magnetically travel equal to the “Speed of Light”. As the train accelerates,it travels around 99.9% of speed of light. If it does,then the travellers inside the train will be travelling in “Time”

Another Blogger,Venky has also written a post on “Time Travel”. Do visit his blog:
http://bit.ly/Timetravel

Google acquires “Bump Top” to take on Apple!

4 May

Canada’s hottest software startup, Toronto-based BumpTop has been acquired by the search engine for reportedly between $30 and $45 million

Set up just three years ago, BumpTop has pioneered touch-screen software that allows use of multiple fingers at a time on a multiple touch screen.

Called ‘desktop workspace,’ the software allows users to organise pictures, documents and videos much more intuitively. Users can perform many functions with their fingers, including dragging of items into docks, and playing around with photos on desktop.

Check out this video for jaw-dropping features of “Bump Top”!

Google Buzz on Iphone!

15 Apr

Drooling over “Google Buzz” in your inbox? Desire to procure it on your iphone?

Follow these steps:
1>Visit www.buzz.google.com on your iphone and sign in with your google account
2>Click on “+” to install the “Buzz” app on your iphone!
3>Start “Buzz”ing from your iphone!

Google Vs China!

26 Mar

Catching up with the story of tussle between Google and China over censoring of google.cn results about China to people in Mainland China?

Google recently shifted the China site to Hong Kong. So anyone now accessing google.cn in Mainland China will be re-directed to google.com.hk

Check out my comics on the same!
http://swathipradeep-comics.blogspot.com/2010/03/google-vs-china.html