Tuesday, 31 January 2012

An international team is claiming a data transfer record that puts any home broadband connection to shame. At last month's SuperComputing 2011 (SC11) conference in Seattle, researchers reached transfer rates of 98 gigabits per second (Gbps) between the University of Victoria Computing Centre located in Victoria, British Columbia, and the Washington State Convention Center in Seattle. Coupled with a simultaneous data rate of 88 Gbps in the opposite direction the team reached a two-way data rate of 186 Gbps to break their own previous peak-rate record of 119 Gbps set in 2009.
While such data rates would no doubt appeal to downloaders looking to bolster their movie collection - at such speeds you'd be able move two million gigabytes per day, or nearly 100,000 full Blu-ray discs - the researchers are more focused on providing scientists with access to the huge amounts of data produced by high-end physics experiments, such as those being carried out at the Large Hadron Collider (LHC).
Using a global grid of 300 computing and storage facilities located at laboratories and universities around the world, more than 100 petabytes of data from the LHC has already been processed, distributed, and analyzed. But that volume is expected to rise a thousand-fold as physicists crank up the collision rates and energies at the LHC.
The team says the new data transfer record will help usher in the next generation of high-speed network technology that will be built in the next couple of years and will help establish new ways to transport the increasingly large quantities of data transmitted across continents and under oceans via global networks of optical fiber. In contrast to existing fiber optic networks that have a top data transfer rate of around 1 Gbps, these next generation networks will be capable of transfer rates of 40 to 100 Gbps.
"Enabling scientists anywhere in the world to work on the LHC data is a key objective, bringing the best minds together to work on the mysteries of the universe," says David Foster, the deputy IT department head at CERN.
The record-breaking demonstration saw an array of 10 DELL servers at the University of Victoria Computing Centre connected with servers on the conference floor in Seattle via a 100-Gbps circuit set up by Canada's Advanced Research and Innovation Network (CANARIE) and BCNET, a non-profit, shared IT services organization.
The team consisted of high-energy physicists, computer scientists, and network engineers, and was led by the California Institute of Technology (Caltech), the University of Victoria, the University of Michigan, the European Center for Nuclear Research (CERN), Florida International University, and other partners.
But the 186 Gbps combined data transfer rate pales in comparison to the 26 Tbps rate achieved by scientists at Germany's Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) earlier this year. However, that achieved using a single laser beam over a distance of 31 miles (50 km), while the latest record-breaking feat was accomplished over distances of over 130 miles (212 km) using fiber optic cable.
The latest Android phone running on ‘Ice Cream Sandwich ’, version 4.0, of Android will be launched in India in the month of March sources said. This phone is developed by both Samsung and Google and they unveiled it last October. “Galaxy Nexus is expected to be launched in March but we do not have the exact dates” is what the company’s Twitter page said.
The dimensions of the phone -8.24mm thick and 4.29 mm bezel- make it very slim and stylish to carry. It’s got a 4.65 inches Super AMOLED screen with 720p high resolution. It runs on a 1.2 GHz dual core processor.
The camera is a nice 5 megapixel one and has zero lag shutters for amazing photos and 1080p video recording with video stabilization. Samsung and Google’s earlier plans of launching this phone at CTIA in San Diego got delayed. It was then unveiled at Samsung Mobile Unpacked event.
“We’re sorry to announce that Samsung Mobile Unpacked event originally scheduled for Oct. 11 has been postponed.” said Samsung on its Facebook page. “Under the current circumstances, both parties have agreed that this is not the appropriate time for the announcement of a new product,” they said in reference to the demise of Apple Inc. founder Steve Jobs.

Monday, 30 January 2012

Have you ever seen children out on the playground, playing some made-up game that only they know the rules to? Well, Play Visions' CyberFire Football Set is kind of like a high-tech version of that. While onlookers just see a couple of kids with funny-looking headgear on, passing a foam football back and forth, those kids will see what appears to be a green or red fireball streaking through the air between them.
The CyberFire ball incorporates a "special retro reflective fabric," while the glasses (except, they're not really glasses) feature colored LED bulbs that emit a specific spectrum of light. When that light strikes the ball from a distance as far as 200 feet (61 meters), day or night, it is very brightly reflected back. By flipping a switch, users can choose between green or red light.
While onlookers would undoubtedly see some of the effect, the idea is that the two glasses-wearing players will be the only ones to see it in its "full glory."

The CyberFire Football Set is available via the Play Visions website, for US$24.99. A single-player Hi Bounce Ball Set can also be purchased, for $14.99.
Bringing your childhood memories back to life has never been easier, at least when it comes to your plush friends. Toys that were never designed for movement can now be animated thanks to a simple ring-like device called PINOKY designed by a group of researchers from Keyo University and the University of Tokyo, as part of the Igarashi Design Interface Project. Simply snap the ring around a plush toy's limb, or any other plush extremity for that matter, and marvel at the sight of your favorite childhood friend waving at you vigorously.
PINOKY rings are wireless and can be controlled remotely, so you don't have to worry about your plush toy falling over some unnecessary cables. You can also teach the rings the right movements by manipulating the plush limbs manually in the recording mode and then replaying the sequence.
Each unassuming ring incorporates a micro-controller, a ZigBee microchip (for radio frequency connectivity), a lithium-polymer battery, a servomotor, a photoreflector (used to measure the angle at which the joint is bent), and a pair of magnetic clasps. PINOKY does not interfere with the 

 structure of the toy, so you can rest assured your buddy won't be harmed. The servomotor simply pushes down a small bar that presses against the toy limb and makes it tilt to the extent dictated by the photosensor.
It's another typical day in the office when your co-worker conspicuously begins to play "Ride of the Valkyries" on high volume. Before you can react to the strange shift in tone, you hear the "thwip thwip" sound of a helicopter coming your direction, as if you've stumbled into a cubicle version of Apocalypse Now. Next thing you know, a bright light shines over your cube wall and in your face, blinding you right before you spot two missiles launching straight at you ... which then bounce off your chest since they're made of plastic. You've just become the latest victim of the HELO TC Assault, the newest toy helicopter from Griffin that includes Android support and twin missile launchers.
Griffin's latest toy helicopter is basically an updated version of the last HELO TC, but with Android compatibility and a sleeker design. The most important new feature, though, would have to be the dual missile launchers and six included missiles that let you rain plastic fury on your enemies from above. Like the previous HELO TC, the Assault version comes with twin rotors and a Flight Deck that attaches to your mobile device through the headphone jack, to send commands to the chopper via infrared. Pilots simply need to download the accompanying app and either use the touchscreen or tilt their smart device to steer.
The app not only provides the necessary controls for maneuvering and even activating the missiles and bright LEDs on the front, but can also record up to three flight plans that can be stored and repeated later. It also features an Auto Land button that will bring the copter in for a safe landing on its own, after a successful mission of terrorizing your coworkers. 

The HELO TC Assault helicopter will be available later this spring (northern hemisphere) for US$59.99, through Griffin's website.
German Porsche tuner Ruf has produced the world’s first professionally built electric 911, the eRUF. The prototype replaces the flat six engine with a brushless three-phase motor powered by lithium-ion batteries. Although not as quick as a petrol-engined 911, Ruf’s engineers say the eRUF is still good for a 0-100km/h (60mph) time of under 7.0sec and has a top speed of 255km/h (160mph). More importantly it’s claimed to have a maximum range of nearly 320km (200 miles).
The battery pack provides 317-volts and 480-amps and consists of 96x 160Ah Axeon lithium-ion iron-phosphate cells, each weighing 5.6 kg (12.3 pounds). Total weight of the pack is 550 kg (1,213 lbs). The pack is constantly monitored by a battery management system from Axeon. Each individual cell is coupled with a sensor that sends information on cell temperature and voltage to the central control system. The cells, with a nominal voltage of 3.3 V, have a lifespan of 3,000 charging cycles. Pack capacity is 50.72 kWh which is around the same capacity as the battery pack found in the Tesla Roadster but at 318 kg (700 lbs) the Tesla pack is 232 kg (513 lbs) lighter than the eRUF battery pack.
The eRUF prototype utilizes a 150kw (204hp) brushless three-phase BLDC motor supplied by UQM in place of Porsche's traditional 345 hp flat six. The electric motor makes around 650 Nm (480 lb-ft) of torque that, like other electric cars, can be had immediately from zero rpm. Unfortunately though, because of the weight of the batteries, Ruf's modifications push its weight up to 1920 kg (4202 lbs) versus a base 911 Carrera S weight of 1420 kg (3124 lbs)
Ruf engaged CALMOTORS in Camarillo, California, specialists in the implementation of hybrid electric and electric only power train design, to combine the latest generation of lithium-ion batteries with the UQM motor. Since the 150 kW electric motor unit is very compact, there is a lot of room for batteries in the Ruf's bodywork. The eRUF remains rear wheel drive with the motor and the bulk of the batteries positioned over and behind the car’s rear axle. The eRUF also retains the standard 6 speed manual gearbox which contributes to the car being overweight, no doubt to be replaced with a lighter and more energy efficient single speed transmission in the production version. 

The eRUF is still in the development stage, and the firm says the car’s performance and range will increase with improvements in battery technology.

Sunday, 29 January 2012

Chris Bell has just put the finishing touches to a new version of his Brutus electric sport cruiser. Brutus 2.0 will continue to be tweaked for improved performance ahead of an end of yearproduction window, but has already managed a zero to 60 mph (96.56 km/h) test run in just 4.74 seconds - despite tipping the scales at 535 pounds (242kg) - and is claimed to have a top speed in excess of 100 mph (160.93 km/h), and a range of at least 100 miles (160.93 km) between charges. The new version has been treated to a new drive train, upgraded braking, new bodywork, new electronics and new controls.
While it's true that last year's Brutus electric motorcycle was quite the stunner, the tasty bodywork changes made to Bell's chain-driven 2012 model - Brutus 2.0 - are simply mouthwatering. There have been quite a few performance improvements, too, starting with the batteries. The new model sees 153 volt/4.9kWh Lithium Polymer battery packs that replace the earlier sealed lead acid outing, and that are designed to last up to 50,000 miles with minimal maintenance (if any). The batteries are recharged using a household mains outlet (110 V), and it's said to take just three hours to reach full charge.

Bell says that it's better for riders to know the minimum range because different riding styles will yield different maximums. Brutus 2.0 is claimed, therefore, to offer aggressive riders an effective range of 100 miles between charges.
The D&D Systems brushed DC electric motor has 88 or 96 volts running to it, depending on whether the rider chooses the eco or performance program. Bell explained that the liquid-cooled, owner programmable Manzanita Zilla 1k motor controller manages pack voltage at 153 volts but only lets 88/96 volts through to the motor, allowing for "virtually no sag in amps or volts during hard acceleration and puts less stress on the pack as a whole."

Working with the clutchless five speed transmission, this set up is said to offer more range and better performance in all riding conditions.
New to the front of Brutus 2.0 is full HID and LED lighting, with the headlight area gaining a small fairing. The digital display is also a Manzanita unit, the LighTech carbon fiber rear view mirrors have been shifted to above the grips, and there are 50mm, inverted, 3-way, 14-point, adjustable front forks. The gas tank is not just there for show, it's hinged to allow keyed access to the batteries and a small storage area - big enough to hold a pair of gloves and some tools.
All of the bodywork was hand-made in steel by Bell in his Las Vegas shop. The specs quote a 31-inch (78.74 cm) seat height, although the Link Type 3-Way 22-Point Adjustable Rear Shock caters for three-position ride height adjustment.
With that impressive top speed, stopping power is of obvious importance. Brutus 2.0 has twin 6 piston dual Galfer rotor brakes at the front and dual piston caliper single Galfer rotor brake at the rear. 

"The rear calipers are independently controlled," Bell told us. "One by a standard foot brake and the other by a hand brake on the left side where the clutch lever normally is."
Bell revealed that the next three Brutus prototypes are currently in pieces in his shop, waiting to be built. He also told us that he's currently working with Nevada law enforcement on a version of the electric sport cruiser with better acceleration and bodywork, and features geared more toward the useable office requirements of motor patrol officers.

"If I can get a fast track through all the federal red tape, the end of the year will see models available to the public," said Bell. "As I move forward with meeting federal standards I am working with industry leaders to identify any potential issues and address those issues before they become a problem to gaining all the necessary approvals." 

"I really hate to put a price out right now because it will end up being less by the time we get to production but I can say with confidence it will be less than US$35,000," he said, when asked about the cost to future Brutus riders. "With rebates and incentives that price will drop quite a bit. As for the international market, I would love to make Brutus available and plan on it. Only time and demand will tell, for now I will focus my efforts in America but I will always consider special orders for international buyers."

Saturday, 28 January 2012

It is no secret that personal transportation form factors are beginning to diverge and a new one caught our attention this week that is almost certain to carve itself a niche in this intensely interesting and competitive space. It's not as sexy as a Yikebike, Honda U3-X or Toyota Winglet, but it is easy to use, has a range of 12 miles (20 km), a top speed of 15 mph and a price under US$1000.
At 90 pounds, the Personal Rover is not exactly small, but it folds up so it can be rolled on castor wheels inside a building, and will easily fit inside a car boot to fulfill secondary transport duties. At first glance, the rather industrial design of the Personal Rover did not appeal to me, but when I did take a look, it's one of the most logically laid out bits of kit I can imagine.

The body of the Personal Rover tilts, so steering, with the tilt proportional to the turning circle, is easily mastered, and the balance offered by the two ski poles gives novices the confidence to take it off-road quite quickly after first stepping onto the machine. 

The Personal Rover's 800 watt rear-wheel drive motor is controlled by a trigger on the right ski-pole - squeeze to go, release to brake, with directional change by body movement.
The biggest problem any form of personal transport faces is ease of use and the riding experience is easy to assimilate as it is very similar to slalom skiing. Given that there will be many different solutions to the personal transportation market, the Personal Rover unquestionably offers yet another viable alternative for the masses to consider.
One of the reasons the Personal Rover is cheap, is that it uses lead acid battery technology - older, less-energy-dense battery technology, that is much cheaper.
The positioning of the batteries in the Personal Rover means that the little extra weight the Personal Rover carries through its choice of batteries is least noticeable just a few inches off the ground. Indeed, the stability of the Personal Rover is greatly enhanced by this considerably weight being located at the low center of gravity, between the rider's ankles. 

The pneumatic off-road wheels are just big enough to make light work of grass and gravel and mild off-road terrain, though it certainly won't go where a mountain bike can. The basic maths of the device are the appealing part. It has a range of 12 miles, can cover 15 miles in an hour, and takes three to four hours to charge.
My guess is that those basic specs will meet most secondary transportation needs, and when the introductory price of the machine is only US$800 (first 50 buyers), that makes for a very cost-effective solution. 

Last but not least is the way the company has addressed the shortcomings of the Personal Rover. At 90 pounds (40 kg), the Personal Rover is bloody heavy, but thanks to an ingenious removable platform with castor wheels, when the Rover is folded and the plate attached, it can be rolled easily inside a building, and stands vertically for compact storage in a corner of your home or office.
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Friday, 27 January 2012

Home video game consoles can provide endless entertainment, but sadly aren't the most portable of devices and can be fairly fragile to boot. Traveling gamers know what a pain it can be to try and haul gaming equipment around for long trips, and that's without trying to find a TV to use wherever they go. GAEMS, Inc. may have a solution, though, with its rugged G155 case that can secure an Xbox 360 or PS3 Slim along with the provided HD LED screen in one tidy, portable package.
Billed as a "self-contained" personal gaming and entertainment environment," the GAEMS G155 is designed to keep a game console protected from damage while on the go. The hard shell case is designed to block minor bumps and scrapes while a foam base and straps keep an Xbox 360 or PS3 Slim firmly in place. Latches on the outside can also be locked for extra security, and the case complies with TSA guidelines for air travel.

Most importantly, the case contains a 15.5-inch LED monitor with a 720p resolution, 60 Hz refresh rate, plus an HDMI input. Speakers are provided on the side of the screen, but there are also two headphone jacks on the front for you and a friend to game privately. The leftover space inside fits two storage bags that can hold controllers, cables, and any accessories. All you need to do is plug in a power supply and you've got your own personal gaming station wherever you go. GAEMS has teamed up with Microsoft Retail stores to create a bundle that comes with the G155 as well as an Xbox 360 with a 250 GB hard drive.

Thursday, 26 January 2012

Maruti Suzuki India Limited (MSIL) is going the Tata Motors way by launching the Swift Dzire compact sedan on 1st February, 2012. This will keep the car below 4 meters long and hence avoid some excise duty benefits which the company is looking to pass on to the customers. This new model will completely replace the old model and be the new version of MSIL’s most selling sedan in India.
Many other players in the Indian automobile sector are trying to take a similar route to ensure price cuts for the customer in this time of turmoil for the industry. Mahundra Verito CS, Tata Manza CS are some of them. The new CS from Maruti is built on the same base design as the new Swift. It will have the same wheel base, although other specifications like 3995 mm in length (less 165mm), 1695 mm in width (up 5 mm) and 1530 mm in height (up 25 mm) are different. Its weight is 1000 kg.

The new CS from Swift Dzire will be with the K 12M VVT petrol engine and the D13A DDiS diesel engine. The K12 engine gives a torque of 114 Nm and 85 hp which can drive it up to the speed limit of 145 km/hr. the rpm band that it can reach is 3000 to 6000. To give it a smoother shift, the company has included the mechanism of detent pin tech and variable valve timing. The petrol variant is also available in an automatic version which will have a four speed automatic torque unit convertor imported from Japan. 

The diesel engine will be 1248cc, intertwined, turbo charged engine that will deliver a torque of 190Nm. The new car will have interiors similar to the new Swift and some extras like black dual tone and new lighter beige theme color for the cabin, wood finish inserts on the dashboard as well as door panels. Chrome inserts, silver accents and leather trim.
Maruti is currently not revealing the price but it can be speculated that it will be a tad lesser than the old Swift Dzire.
The increasing number of crimes against women in the country is gathering at least somebody’s attention. A young student from GD Goenka School called Manu Sharma has invented a device specifically for this purpose. It’s a small device which a woman can wear on her wrist and use to protect herself. If commercialized properly, this device can change the lives of many women across the country.
Manu Sharma says that he is well aware of the spate of women in the NCR region and knows what many women go through everyday. The need to do something to stop this menace is what inspired Manu to come up with this device.

Though many women are able to escape such horrible situations, the emotional and mental scars show for a long time in these women. This leads to a disturbed state of mind and depression in some. According to him this new device will make them feel safer during such crises.
The device works in a rather simple manner. It can be worn on the wrist like a watch and when a woman is being physically harassed it will trigger off an electric shock that will be generated from the impulses of the woman. Now to give you a rough idea, a normal person’s impulse rate is somewhere around 60 meters per second but when a woman is being physically manhandled her rate shoots up to 119 meters per second. At this point the device senses the sudden increase in the impulse and gives out a small electric shock of the intensity of 0.01 amperes which is good enough to paralyze the molester for some seconds giving the woman enough time to escape the scene. The device can only feel the hormones of a woman which makes it rather useless for men.
Currently it’s only in the development stage but it is soon to be commercialized. For this invention Manu Sharma has also won accolades from former president Dr. A P J Abdul Kalam and also the Indian Institute of Management, Ahmadabad. Manu Sharma is working with the National Innovation Federation to make this device more user- friendly and available commercially.

Tuesday, 24 January 2012

More from CES 2012, Sin City, where we've briefly had a chance to get familiar with the Nokia Lumia 900, the Finnish corporation's sacrificial offering at the increasingly cluttered LTE altar to the gods of 4G. The Windows smartphone features a large 4.3-inch AMOLED touchscreen, 8-megapixel camera with a wide-angle Carl Zeiss lens and seven hours of talk time, according to Nokia. First impressions? Really rather good, actually.
With its announcement, the Lumia 900 becomes the central prong to the Lumia trident of Windows smartphones (between the Lumia 710 and Lumia 800), with which Nokia hopes to address its collapsing market share. 

  1. A run-down of the key specs:
  2. Body: One-piece polycarbonate unit
  3. Dimensions: 5.03 x 2.7 x 0.45 inches (127.8 x 68.6 x 11.4 mm)
  4. Mass: 5.6 ounces (160 grams)
  5. Processor clock speed: 1.4 GHz single-core Qualcomm Snapdragon (the same as inside the 710 and 800)
  6. Key connectivity: LTE, 3G, WLAN b/g/n
  7. Touchscreen: 4.3-inch 800 x 480 AMOLED ClearBlack glass capacitive touchscreen
  8. Rear camera: 8-megapixel sensor and 28 mm wide-angle Carl Zeiss lens, 1280 x 720 30 fps HD video
  9. Front camera: 1-megapixel sensor, 640 x 480 30 fps video, video calling
  10. Battery: 1830 mAh, 7 h max. 3G talk time, 300 h max. 3G standby, 60 h max. music playback, 6.5 h max. video playback
  11. Memory: 14.5 GB mass memory (no micro-SD slot), 512 MB SDRAM
  12. Operating system: Windows Phone 7.5 Mango 
 Our first impressions are that Nokia's Lumia 900 has the robustness necessary for a phone this size, to the point that we wonder if this may be the first smartphone for which a case would be surplus to requirements. The large proportions are actually welcome, given that the front face is touchscreen touchscreen touchscreen - and a bright, responsive touchscreen at that. The phone's menus were intuitive to navigate. However, the 900's specification does fall short of some of the other LTE smartphones revealed this week.
Nokia's Lumia 900 will be another AT&T exclusive, although there's no official word on a launch date (other than "the coming months") or pricing. A U.S. release is rumored to fall towards the end of Q1, when cyan and matte black models will be available. 

Nokia additionally announced imminent Canadian launches of the Lumia 710 and Lumia 800. The 710 will be exclusive to Rogers Communications, arriving in February for CAD $49.99 on a three-year plan. The 800 will emerge from the mists of ambiguity "soon," exclusive to TELUS and available in black, cyan and magenta.
Obtaining a high-quality 3D digital model of a physical object can be a fiddly process, that often requires considerable user input. German research and development company NEK, however, is attempting to make things easier, with its OrcaM Orbital Camera System. Users just place an object inside of its "reconstruction sphere," then the system goes to work, automatically creating a near-perfect three-dimensional recreation of the object.
Presently, OrcaM is limited to objects with a diameter no larger than 80 centimeters (31.5 in), and weighing no more than 100 kilograms (220.5 lbs). 

The process begins with the user sliding back the camera head, opening up the sphere, and placing their object inside. Once the sphere has been closed and the head slid back into place, the acquisition stage can begin. This involves the head slowly moving around the sphere, systematically snapping high-definition images of the object from every angle, via its seven cameras. A matrix of lights on the inside surface of the sphere illuminate the object differently for every shot, to best capture all of the intricate details of its geometry. Users don't need to calibrate the cameras or lighting system, as the system performs that function automatically.
Once the scanning is completed, a linked computer creates a 3D model of the object, using the captured images.

According to NEK (webpage is in German), features that are still in development for the system include the abilities to scan through plate glass and to recreate semi-transparent objects, along with simplified one-button use, and portability.
Chew on a stick of gum sweetened with xylitol and you may just experience a cool sensation. Slip on a pair of Carbon Pro Team shoes from Louis Garneau and you may just get the same feeling. While it's most common use is as a natural sweetener, properties of xylitol make it useful for clothing as well. Xylitol is woven into fabric under the brand name Ice-Fil, which is used in the insoles of the Louis Garneau Carbon Pro Team cycling shoes to help keep athletes cool.
Xylitol is an alcohol-based sugar. Many fruits and vegetables contain the substance, as well as fibrous materials in corn husks and birch bark. It's the birch bark that's most commonly used to process the sweetener. While it's not as well known as sugar and other sweeteners, food manufacturers began using xylitol in the 1960s.

It's a more recent development that the substance is used for fabrics and other materials. A company based in Seoul, Korea called Ventex, produces Ice-Fil as a cooling fabric.
Ice-Fil is able to moderate moisture and temperature. Fibers in the fabric react to perspiration, and then convert that sweat into cool air. The xylitol-infused fabric performs the dual purpose of moderating temperature and moisture. In clothing, it also has UVA- and UVB-blocking abilities.
In addition to the Carbon Pro Team shoe, Louis Garneau uses the fabric for its 76 Montreal Glove, a half-finger cycling glove. The Ice-Fil surface treatment absorbs body heat and converts it - as well as sweat - to a "refrigerant," which cools hands while cycling. Several brands are starting to use the fabric for athletic wear such as arm cooler sleeves, jerseys and caps.

In most cases, the xylitol-infused fabric comes into contact with air, such as when worn as gloves, shirts and hats. The use of Ice-Fil in a shoe insole, such as with the Carbon Pro Team shoe, is in an enclosed space. The shoe's design includes a great deal of ventilation in the sole and uppers, but the insole is still a component of the shoe that would normally trap heat. The Ice-Fil aids in temperature moderation.
Louis Garneau is a sponsor of Team Europcar. The Carbon Pro Team Shoes were tested at the Team Europcar Training Camp. The team will wear the shoes to train and race for the 2012 season, which hits its peak in July during the gruelling Tour de France. Europcar team member Thomas Voeckler finished the Tour de France 2011 in fourth place.

Monday, 23 January 2012

September 21, 2005 Flying is not a sport generally associated with those people who are light of wallet – which makes the Mosquito Ultralight helicopter something of a rarity. The entire kit for the Mosquito can be purchased for US$20,000 and if you think the minimalist Mosquito leaves you a bit vulnerable, there’s the fully enclosed Mosquito XE and XEL which can be purchased for US$23,000 apeice. Building the kits will cost you about 200 to 300 hours to build or you can have the plane built for you for a flat US$4000. Getting airborn for under US$20,000 in your own, new helicopter is quite a feat – we’re not aware of any other helicopter in this price category and on top of that, both Mosquito variants offer very low maintenance and operating costs.
The Mosquito’s designer John Uptigrove is a mech engineer by trade and like a lot of people alwaysdreamed of being able to fly. “By creating an ultralight helicopter it offers that ability without all the cost and hassle of dealing with air regs,” says Uptigrove. To date, Uptigrove’s Innovator Technologies has sold 37 mosquito kits (two in Japan, two in Canada, one in Spain, one in France, one in Belgium and the remainder in the US) and a dozen have been built to airworthiness by their purchasers at the time of going to press. The open frame Mosquito first became available in 2002 and the XE model was brought on in 2004. 

All of the mosquitoes sold so far have been built in kit form, though the company has just begun offering a factory build program and the first factory-finished Mosquito is being finished as you read this.
The birds are typically used for “recreational flight for the most part,” says Uptigrove.
“Some plan to use them for flying into their favorite fishing hole. As a work machine they are ideal for ranch herding, flying fence lines or flying out to your farm machinery. I think every farmer and rancher should have one,” he jokes.
The Ultralight legal Mosquito and Mosquito XEL are only permitted to carry five gallons of fuel and hence have a range of just 60 miles. The XE can carry 12 gallons of fuel and so has a range of 150 miles. 

Canadian-based Uptigrove originally charged less for his offspring, but as he explains, “I sell in US dollars as that is the primary market, but I live in Canada and the Canadian dollar keeps going up which is cutting into my profit in a bad way, so I have to keep raising my price to match.” You can actually start building your Mosquito for a lot less as the kit is sold in bite size chunks and the first kit group, the frame kit, sells for only US$2,995.00.
Uptigrove believes safety is paramount in aviation and puts his money where his mouth is. Provide proof that you have had helicopter training from a certified instructor to at least the "solo" signoff, or a minimum of 10 hours dual instruction by the time of your purchase of the last group (Rotor System and Blades) and Innovator will discount the final price by US$2,000 to help pay for your training. 

If you’d like more info on the Mosquito, there’s a Mosquito information video pack that sells for US$30.00
Astronomers using data from NASA's Kepler mission have discovered a tiny solar system consisting of a single red dwarf star, known as KOI-961 and three planets which are 0.78, 0.73 and 0.57 times the radius of Earth.
"This is the tiniest solar system found so far," said John Johnson, the principal investigator of the research from NASA's Exoplanet Science Institute at the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena. "It's actually more similar to Jupiter and its moons in scale than any other planetary system. The discovery is further proof of the diversity of planetary systems in our galaxy."
To find the size of the planets, data on a well-studied twin star to KOI-961 (known as Barnard's Star) was used. Once they were able to estimate the size of KOI-961 - or Kepler Object of Interest 961 - astronomers were able to determine how big the planets must be to have caused the observed dips in starlight. In addition to the Kepler observations and ground-based telescope measurements, the team used modeling techniques to confirm the discoveries.
The smallest of the three planets is approximately the size of Mars with a surface temperature of around 400-degrees Celsius (750-degrees Fahrenheit). 

The planets are thought to be rocky - like Earth - but orbit much closer to their star making them too hot to hold liquid water, making them uninhabitable ... at least for us.
Although over 700 planets have been discovered and confirmed to orbit other stars - known as exoplanets - only a handful are known to be rocky.
With the planets orbiting a red dwarf, the most common type of star in the Milky Way, the finding suggests that our galaxy may be teaming with other rocky planets, some falling within the habitable region around those stars meaning the temperature may be just right for producing liquid water.
"Astronomers are just beginning to confirm thousands of planet candidates uncovered by Kepler so far," said Doug Hudgins, Kepler program scientist at NASA Headquarters in Washington. "Finding one as small as Mars is amazing, and hints that there may be a bounty of rocky planets all around us."
The Kepler spacecraft is an American space observatory that serves as the space-based portion of NASA's Kepler Mission. Kepler searches for planets by continuously monitoring the position of more than 150,000 stars and looking for changes in their luminosity levels caused by transiting planets. The crossing, or transiting phenomenon is known as "astronomical transit" and describes the process of one celestial body passing in front of another, partially obscuring a small part of it. The occurrence is not dissimilar to a solar eclipse, although that phenomenon is known as "solar transit." 

Discovering KOI-961 and its orbiting planets are the latest amongst the Kepler mission's many accomplishments. In December 2011, scientists announced the mission's first confirmed planet in the habitable zone. The planet, which is 2.4 times the size of earth, is now called Kepler-22b. Later that same month, the team discovered the first extrasolar Earth-size planets. These planets are known as Kepler-20e and Kepler 20-f.

Sunday, 22 January 2012

A newer version of Nimbuzz is now available. The newer version of Nimbuzz has been updated for Symbian.
Nimbuzz is an app that helps you to call, chat and stay connected to your friends all the time. The newer version of Nimbuzz is 3.3 and it has been said to bring out a new User Interface.

The newer version of Nimbuzz has grid icons menu layout. The icons are now big and there is addition of some new icons into the app such as N-World, Recent chat and Group Chat.
The New Features of Nimbuzz 3.3 Include The Following:
30% faster login
New “Notifiable” icon – the green half moon
Three new icons added: Recent Chats, N-World and Groupchat
Change your password from the inside the app
Block contacts that annoy you
Redesigned Home Screen for fast access to your favorite features
Download link for the new Nimbuzz Version 3.3

Download link for Nimbuzz – http://www.nimbuzz.com/en/mobile/download
Google Chrome, the world’s second-favorite browser has come up with a new beta that will not only increase its speed but also its security.
According to the official Google Chrome blog, the release of the new beta of the Chrome browser, version 17.0.963.26 beta-m, acquires its extra speed by loading a few Web pages in the background, even before one has completed typing the URL in omnibox.

Google has also announced that the new beta will also offer additional security against malevolent websites and their malicious downloads. Dominic Hamon, the software engineer wrote in the Chrome blog post the beta version includes “expanded functionality to analyze executable files (such as “.exe” and “.msi” files) that you download.” Google Chrome will inform its users with a warning that they should discard such defected files. Hamon also reported that the company will make Chrome further smart in the coming days such that it can detect even more malicious files.
On downloading and testing the new Chrome beta we discovered that it actually feels faster. It downloaded and installed files without any hitch. It feels stable too so far. After typing a web address I visited the Chrome address window, omnibox, where all the URLs appear and it actually felt like it was quicker.
I will continue testing the browser to figure out if there are any bugs. You can try the new beta test release by downloading the beta version of Chrome from here – http://www.google.com/landing/chrome/beta/ – While Chrome is the world’s second largest used browser, Google Chrome 15 beat out Internet Explorer 8as the most popular browser version throughout the world.
Download Link For New Beta Version of Google Chrome
Download link for new beta version of Google Chrome – http://www.google.com/landing/chrome/beta/
People use Gmail in different ways and some people use it multiple accounts, say professional and personal accounts. For people who need to access their accounts on Gmail all at the same time, Google has some news for you. You can easily log in to your multiple accounts all at the same time in the same browser window. The problem is, singing out in one account leads to an automatic sign off from all places. Also if you start a fresh browser session you will have to use your different accounts separately from different places.
The Other Route:

If you have say three accounts on Gmail and one is your primary one that you use most and other two are just secondary and you want to be able to log into all these accounts at once without typing in the login details so many times- we have a solution for you-
Email Delegation is a facility offered by Gmail wherein a person can provide access of his Gmail account to another person, say spouse, without telling them the password and this person will have read-write access to their mail and can access it by signing into their own account on Gmail. Access to all your Gmail accounts can be gained by simply enabling the Email Delegation facility.
Sign-in to one of your secondary Gmail accounts and go to Mail Settings –> Accounts –> Grant Access to your account Choose “Add another Account” and specify your primary Gmail email address here. You’ll now get a confirmation email in your primary mailbox. Accept the request and repeat these steps for all your other Gmail accounts.
That’s it. Once you sign-in to your main Gmail account, you also check all your secondary email accounts by choosing the “Switch Account” option in the upper left corner of your Gmail window. There’s absolutely no need to manually sign in to any of the other email accounts.

This feature can be used only for Gmail as of now and other products like Groups, Docs, Calendar, etc. are not included. Also, they can only allow the third party visitor to your account, an access to the mailbox that you have assigned and not other mailboxes and if your primary account gets hacked then they have all access to your Gmail account.
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