科技创新,为了好玩与艺术

电影《社交网络》有一个场景,扎克伯格要为初创的facebook挑选程序员,几个程序员坐在电脑前面,几台电脑围成圆圈,似乎是看谁能够最快突破防火墙,最有趣的是每10秒钟必须喝一杯酒下去。程序员竞赛可以这么玩?

《乔布斯传》,每台Macintosh机器内部,都可以看到乔布斯和每位设计成员的签名,他坚持所有的艺术品都应该有签名。如同他父亲坚持用同样好的木料与工艺制作柜子的背面一样,乔布斯认为机器内部以及电路板的设计与排布也应该同样简洁与美观。

经历了几年通信工程学习、几年程序员编程、几年项目管理与产品运营,从不知道编程竞赛可以这么带劲,也不知道科学与艺术可以通过这么有趣的方式结合。编程、电路板,从来都被认为是一本正经的东西,在极客的手里,成为了玩酷的工具。这个wordpress似乎也有一句口号是,code is poetry,代码如诗。硅谷是怎样一个地方,吸引了全世界最优秀的人才,集聚着全世界最创新的思维?美国的土壤里又是怎么让一个被遗弃的叙利亚后代成为了伟人,让一位肯尼亚人的后代成为了总统?如果新教伦理发展出了现代资本主义精神,说宗教决定了后续社会发展,但为什么同样信奉佛教的中国与日本却有着很不同的结局?周围看到的是焦虑的风投、还有只为了圈钱与亮点的各色政府工程。

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乔布斯的童年

用了软件,终于翻出来正常访问wordpress。

《乔布斯传》描述了他的童年时期。乔布斯经常被欺负,到七年级上到一半的时候,他给父母下达了最后通牒。“我坚持要他们送我去别的学校。”他回忆说。这在经济上对他的父母来说是个艰难的挑战。当时他们家勉强能够收支平衡。但那样的时刻,毫无疑问。父母最终一定会满足他的意愿。“他们一最先反对,我就告诉他们,如果要我回到克里滕登的话,我就再也不上学了。所以他们就调查了一下最好的学校在哪里,然后倾尽所有,在一个更好的地域,花21 000美元买下了一座房子。

不同于孟母三迁,这个美国版故事并不是长辈要搬迁,而是孩子本人。我没有教过他,两岁的瓜瓜已经可以自己把iphone中的字母游戏给找出来了,是否和以下这个章节有关呢?

一年夏天,保罗·乔布斯带着史蒂夫去威斯康星州参观他们家的奶牛场。乡村生活对史蒂夫毫无吸引力,但有一幅画面却深深刻在了他心上。他看到了一只小牛犊的出生,让他惊讶的是,这只小动物才落地几分钟就挣扎着站起来开始走路。“这不是它通过学习获得的技能,而是与生俱来的,”他回忆说,“人类的婴儿就没有这种能力。我觉得这很了不起,虽然别人都不这么想。”他用软硬件术语来形容这个现象:“就好像是设计好的一样,动物身体里的某些东西和它大脑里的某些东西在它出生后立刻开始协同作用,而不需要它去学习。”

瓜瓜一家国庆环太湖

国庆过后,一直很难登陆,连翻墙都更新很困难,放一段国庆的游记吧。
hhttp://www.tudou.com/programs/view/LuWPnh7-2no/
瓜瓜一家国庆环太湖,首次使用imovie(iphone拍摄,在macbook上使用ilife系列的imovie与iphoto制作,谨以此片向steve致敬)

G.hn能够一统江湖吗?

国际电信联盟(ITU-T)6月公布新一代家庭网络传输标准G.hn,但由于无法和现存标准兼容,遭HomePlug联盟和同轴电缆多媒体联盟(MoCA)支持者诟病,身为G.hn支持者的Lantiq执行长 Christian Wolff表示,建立G.hn的用意在消弭现今标准混乱的态势,并创造可供市场参考的新标准,这也将引起G.hn和其他标准无可避免的市场竞争。  Lantiq执行长Christian Wolff认为,G.hn标准的确立,将进一步推动家庭网络标准的统一。Wolff指出,虽然G.hn无法和现存的两大家庭网络技术兼容,但根据现存家庭网络标准的状况为例,即使属于同一个联盟,不同厂商所制定的标准也存有不兼容的问题,如HomePlug。他强调,G.hn制定的宗旨系为促进优于现存标准的技术发展,提供替代方案取代彼此不兼容标准的家庭网络标准。

G.hn试图以全新的标准进军家庭网络市场,提倡透过电缆(Coax)、电源线(Powerline)和电话线不同媒介线路,以1G/s的速率传输高画质家庭影像数据,并促进周边媒体共存,更强调以低功耗的电源管理,促进家庭网络中智能型装置的应用。

Lantiq去年脱离英飞凌(Infineon)后,随即在11月并购Aware获得G.hn技术,进一步精进家庭网络产品的设计。Wolff表示,Lantiq现阶段的目的是推动G.hn成为统一家庭网络的新标准,虽然尚未拟定推出G.hn芯片的时程,但未来势必和现存两大家庭网络标准的芯片制造商短兵相接,竞争者如博通(Broadcom)。

MoCA和HomePlug分别为现存两大家庭网络标准,HomePlug以电源线作为传输媒介,锁定零售商为主要通路,广泛应用于北美高速网络和亚洲及欧洲网络电视(IPTV),最主要的芯片供货商是后来被创锐讯(Atheros)购并的Intellon;至于MoCA则深耕于北美家庭电视影像传输电缆市场,芯片供货商原本仅有Entropic,直到2009年博通也进入此一市场,推出将MoCA置入机顶盒的系统单芯片(SoC)。

未来家庭网络将维持有线搭配无线技术的方向发展,Wolff指出,虽然无线传输技术近年热络应用在家庭网络,但以空气作为传输介质存在比较高的不稳定性,由于有线传输被缆线包覆,更能保证传输质量。因此未来家庭网络传输技术将仍以有线为主,两者以共存的型态相辅相成,皆是家庭网络的构成要素。 

Switched On: No new wires, one new caveat

Switched On: No new wires, one new caveat

By   posted Sep 25th 2011 8:14PM
Each week Ross Rubin contributes Switched On, a column about consumer technology.

In the decade that WiFi has blanketed home networks across the United States, several technologies aimed at using existing wiring in the home have met with limited success. These have included MoCA(Multimedia over Coax, which has been adopted by some service providers for implementing multi-room DVRs) and HomePNA (originally for phone lines but later expanded to coax cable as well). At least three dueling standards have also sought to bring high-speed connectivity over electrical wiring.HomePlug, the most successful of these, has had several iterations. The latest – HomePlug AV – is rated at a theoretical throughput of 200 Mbits/sec. However, power line technologies have been held back by high prices and occasional interoperability problems.

But a new approach seeks to be the one protocol to rule them all, operating over phone lines, power lines or coax. Dubbed G.hn, the ITU standard promises up to 1Gbps theoretical throughput, with real-world usage over electrical lines expected to reach between 250Mbps and 400Mbps. If that sounds appealing to you, you’re not alone. Service providers like the idea of G.hn since it allows them more flexibility than previous efforts. In fact, they like it so much that — despite G.hn’s capacity — they have insisted on quality of service standards that could limit or prevent consumers from installing it themselves after they buy adapters from retailers.

Let’s say your local pay-TV provider outfits your home with G.hn power line adapters to stream high-definition shows between two DVRs. A few months later, you purchase a couple of G.hn bridges to hook up your bedroom PC to your living room Blu-ray player to stream your own high-definition videos. The G.hn adapters that the service provider installed will recognize the new equipment. The service provider may then request that you call them for permission to install, may provide a portion of the bandwidth available over the power lines, or may even flatly tell you that you can’t use the adapters. G.hn equipment providers are working with service providers to encourage a more relaxed stance, but operators reserve the right to do what they want.

Savvy home networkers will find a few ways to work around the service provider prerogative and still tap the bandwidth of cables already in the home. If, for example, the service provider chooses G.hn using coax cables, you are free to use one of the other two methods (phone line or power line) without restrictions. Or you could still use a technology other than G.hn. Going back to power line, the next version of the HomePlug standard is expected to coexist with G.hn. Finally, you could opt for a pay-TV provider that doesn’t use G.hn if you have a local choice available.

G.hn is expected to appear in devices before the end of the next year, rolling out to service providers first, consumer electronics companies second, and finally to networking products aimed at retailers and consumers. It could deliver a promising complement to WiFi; but if your service provider puts it in your home before you do, remember to put sugar on top of your “pretty please” when you try to install it.

海尔的透明电视/Haier’s transparent organic TV eyes-on (video)

By   posted Sep 4th 2011 7:03PM

What’s the worst thing about your TV? If you said “opaqueness,” boy have we got the set from you. This is a 22-inch transparent organic TV from the folks at Haier (you know, the ones who also showed off that mind control TV today). It’s a slim display with a metal bezel that has a clear OLED at its center with a 1680 x 1050 resolution. The images appeared pretty sharp on screen, though the colors didn’t particularly pop.

And really, this thing isn’t likely headed to any living rooms in the near future — Haier sees it more as an advertising tool, letting shoppers see its images from both sides. The display in its demo form was actually hooked up to a Windows PC, running video through a media player, making this not too unlike that 14-inch Samsung laptop that we saw at CES last year.

The TV is still in its early demo stages, so pricing and availability are a ways off. Video after the break.
顾家男评论:海尔的透明有机电视,不过,没太想明白怎么用。另外,engadget似乎开始较多关注中国品牌了。

海尔的脑控电视原型机 -Haier’s mind control TV prototype hits IFA, we go foreheads-on (video)

By   posted Sep 3rd 2011 7:26PM

The remote control revolutionized the way we watch television, doing away with the need for frequent trips to the set in order to change channels. One prototype in Haier’s portfolio makes the whole remote thing look like a back breaking chore by comparison. The Brain Wave (definitely not a final product name) television protoype showcased at IFA this week brings mind control into the picture, promising users a future where channels can be changed and volume controlled with mere thought.

The set is still in the early prototype stages at the moment, however, so we’re still a ways away from such life altering precision. At the moment, the only available demo involves blowing up an animated barrel with your mind. Naturally, we had to give the thing a spin. Check out the results after the break.

Controlling the set with your brain requires wearing a fairly uncomfortable plastic headset — one that reminded us of our demos with Mattel’s Mindflex system. An arm rests on the wearer’s forehead, and there’s a clip that dangles from the rear, clamping on to your earlobe — it’s certainly a lot more awkward than just using an old fashioned remote.

Getting the barrel to explode in the demo is bit like a mind control version of a “Magic Eye” poster, forcing yourself to sort of concentrate and unfocus at the same time — a bit hard to properly describe, but simple enough, once you get the hang of it. We managed to figure it out pretty quickly, and were blowing up barrels with the best of them. It’s hard to image using this device for several tasks all at the same time, however — changing channels, adjusting the volume and choosing movie titles.

It’s also hard to imagine too many people going through the trouble of putting on the headset to avoid the fairly minor task of using a remote — hopefully Haier will be able to reduce the controller’s size and awkwardness, should this thing ever come to market. No saying when that might be or how much such system might cost, however.

顾家男评论:目前还是在玩概念。