Archive for Technology

Printable Electronics! Woot!

Posted in Science, Technology with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on March 25, 2013 by urbannight

printed%20electronics_sI’ve been complaining about the cost of electronics for a while.  I keep waiting for electronics to go down in price but, thanks to Apple, we now have a culture in which a new and expensive upgrade comes out at about the same time when something should be coming down in price.  There is no gap in between anymore.  Support for older devices is vanishing earlier and software developers are abandoning users of older items faster than ever.

 

This is why I decided to skip the entire smart phone phenomenon and have a no-nonsense mp3 player.  I refuse to be an iSheep and I’m not playing the ‘keeping up with the Jones’s’ game.

 

The issue is silicon and copper based parts which are expensive and require special equipment to produce and install.  There are organic and plastic variations that are less expensive, but also less effective.  At least until now.

 

These new, printable, polymers can be “brushed over a surface to create a thin-layer of film capable of carrying an uninterrupted charge.”

 

WOOT!

 

They are looking to use these in LED displays or in the coating for solar cells.  Hopefully, this will start to make some electronics more affordable. 

 

I keep hoping for the days when tech is so available and affordable that people can easily afford high tech equipment even as they live in hole in the wall dives and the ease of affordability makes the tech not worth stealing.  I read too much cyberpunk as a developing child.

Why the GOP is Dragging the Country Backwards.

Posted in Economics, Life, Politics, Technology with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on June 5, 2012 by urbannight

The US Navy has come up with a stealth submarine that is so expensive that it would cripple the military to build them. It is described as, “A super-stealthy warship that could underpin the U.S. navy’s China strategy will be able to sneak up on coastlines virtually undetected and pound targets with electromagnetic “railguns” right out of a sci-fi movie. (Eric Talmadge, AP)”

Everything seems to be getting to expensive for the government to do anymore. Advancements in military technology and the space program just to name two. Personally, I blame uncontrolled, Free Market, capitalism. By not putting any type of controls on it, Capitalism has been allowed to rape the populous in order to keep increasing the profit margins. Prices keep getting pushed up to get the most out of ever person. Everything is more expensive and most of the money gets tied up in those big businesses and people have less and less to spend.

We also have a situation that seems very odd. We have a large portion of out of work people. More technology tends to use fewer people. Some fields have nearly disappeared. We are also told we have a shrinking work force as more Baby Boomers are retiring and we don’t have enough workers to keep up the tax base to fund their social security benefits.

The real answer is that we need fewer people. The technology of the future uses fewer people so we need to produce fewer people. That means we have to figure out a better way to fund the government retirement programs. This wouldn’t be as bad a problem is we stopped the out of control cost increase as businesses try to milk the population of every penny they have. But once the population starts to die off and if we make a point not to over procreate then there will be more money for the rest of us. There will be more money for science and technology that will take us into the future.

At this rate, it is clear that we are not going to progress. We can no longer afford it. We are not even going to sit here and stagnate. We are already slipping backwards and regressing. The very science fiction that gave people the ideas to strive for is also becoming darker, more dismal, more depressed. So much so that one writer challenged other writers to start writing more hopeful futures with new ideas. The current science fiction seems to have stopped creating new technological ideas that might exist in the future. But even should they get those creative, inventive juices flowing, the finite money supply will be so tied up in corporate business that it just won’t be there to fund the projects.

So, if the government and military really want to continue advancements in modern weaponry, then the government needs to look at profit caps for businesses, limits on how much prices can increase each year, greater control on medical costs (inflation on medical care increase at a rate of between 2 and 4 times greater than the cost of living inflation each year), and encourage the use of birth control rather than limiting it. Then the reduced population will have more money and be happier. Science fiction writers can help create the ideas for the scientists to develop and we can start moving forward again. But it requires doing everything that sends the GOP screaming onto their soap boxes and into their pulpits.

Disturbing Or Interesting?

Posted in Entertainment, Life, Movies and Theatre, Technology, Uncategorized, Writing with tags , , , , , , , , on March 31, 2012 by urbannight

Is it interesting or disturbing that smartphone apps have made a reality out of technology from the movies. In Minority Report, you have something in you that will trigger ads and stuff for things you would be interested in when you walk past wall screens. We have those apps now. They just go to your phone instead.

I was reading this article on Girls Around You app and how it works. If women and girls have a public Facebook page and log into foursquare, this app can find them and show you were they were when they last logged in. Sounds like a stalker tool if I ever heard of one.

But there are also apps that do the same thing with clubs, parties (maybe that’s where those people no one knew at your last party came from), sales, shops, and so on. Is it an advertiser’s dream or a nightmare for the individual?

By the way, if you remember the commercials about technology that was ALMOST at our fingertips, I read yesterday that Tricorder technology really is almost ready to go.

43 Days. A Moving Experience

Posted in Apartments, Books, Economics, Entertainment, Life, Technology, Work, Writing with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on April 8, 2011 by urbannight

43 Days until I want to move all my furniture. Is it to early to start writing about moving?

I’ve spent the past two weeks teasing myself with the floor plan. I’m so eager to be moved already.

I want to move on the third weekend in May. I have 6 weekends before then. Trying to organize packing this far out is a terrible challenge. It is hard to focus on specific areas.

My roommate is moving in next weekend. I am taking the day off because I’ve been informed that I get the job of directing the placement of his furniture in all the public rooms and he doesn’t care where the kitchen stuff goes just so long as he can find it.

I think I may finally have a plan for my stuff. Start with books and clothes. Pack the boxes I have and try to set aside a box each for donations. (I’ve gone through one of 10 book cases and only come up with 6 books to donate!)

The goal is to get rid of the two smaller brown bookcases that really are not in very good shape. So I really ought to try to weed out that many books. I will pack away winter clothes and costuming stuff. Of the three boxes of too small clothes I couldn’t part with 3 years ago, I’ll sort through and ONLY keep a few items as motivators. I’m moving with a friend who has an elliptical and the apartment has a really nice fitness center.

Of the clothes currently in the dressers and closet, I ought to try to weed out a good portion. Since I’m moving, it’s really a good time to break down and get rid of some of the beloved pieces that got an oil stain that would never come out, or mystery washing machine stains that were not there before loading into the washer. Since I’ll be saving every month, I should just start refreshing my wardrobe by one item a month. So I should purge it ahead of time.

Next will be my scrapbooking stuff and hobby stuff. (non-stitching) Not a lot of weeding to do in that stuff. But it is also stuff that I can easily not use before the move.

Weekend three should belong to organizing, sorting, and packing most of my computer and electronic stuff and returning the Cox Digital box to them. I will probably not going to have cable again. It is just too expensive anymore. And SyFy shows my programs on SyFy Rewind. So I can watch them eventually. I mostly use Hulu and Netflix at 1/8th the cost of my cable bill.

Weekend four is getting closer to move date so I can really start packing up the majority of kitchen and bathroom stuff. At this point I’ll start taking my boxes over as well. I can get my bathroom set up and half my clothes in my bedroom closets and start getting stuff organized. Maybe I’ll get a new computer desk and set it up over there ahead of time and when I move my computer at the end, I’ll put the sewing/computer desk in the storage closet. It collapses flat. I also want to get rid of the extra dresser I use for storage and the computer des I’m currently using. Move it to the previously mentioned sewing desk during this packing stage.

Weekend 5 will see to the packing and organizing of my very important stitching stuff and anything else I want to see handled with great care. And moving more boxes. I still need to find someone who can remove my defunct treadmill.

This brings me to Weekend 6. The last weekend before the big move. I’ll leave myself with basic bathroom and kitchen stuff. One week of clothing. Get everything moved over except the BIG stuff. And take over empty drawers from the dressers so it is easier to move them.

That leave 4 piece bedroom set. One small table with 4 chairs. 8 bookcases some only 3 feet some up to 6 feet. One entertainment center. One flat screen t.v. and one regular t.v. One sewing/computer table. One hope chest. One rocking chair. And my computer.

My biggest concern is finding people to help me move. Movers will cost a minimum of 200 dollars for a minimum of two hours. Not sure I can afford that, but I could try. If it went over 2 hours then it would be a real problem. Maybe I can move all the short book cases myself. (I’m doing the computer myself.) The end table I could possibly do. Not sure the collapsible sewing/computer table will fit in my car. But I could try it. I could probably get the 4 chairs in my car at one time. And the bedroom TV.

If I managed that it brings the stuff to move down to Bed-frame, Mattresses, Dresser w/ mirror, Tall Dresser, Table, Entertainment center, Flat screen TV, 4 or 5 Bookcases, Hope Chest, Rocking Chair, and maybe the sewing table.

Renting a U-haul is so much more affordable, but if I can’t find muscle to help me move (for the price of beer and pizza) it doesn’t’ do me much good.

I have to make that decision in the next two weeks so I can get it set up. That is the only thing I don’t have much time left on to make that choice.

The last two weekends in May will be for moving anything I didn’t get moved already and getting a professional carpet cleaner in and for doing the rest of the cleaning on my own. I do own my own carpet cleaner. But it doesn’t do the greatest job. Not when trying to clean up an entire carpeted area.

On the whole, I wish I could start taking over stuff this instant. I’m to eager to be in the new setting, in a lovely apartment, with a nice gym, no longer having to park on the street, no longer having to run the dishwasher to get the water hot enough for a hot bath, and saving some money each month.

Just writing this feels like a huge tease on myself.

The iPad Debate

Posted in Advertising, Technology with tags , , , , on September 3, 2010 by urbannight

I tell myself I don’t need one.  It is just a fancy gadget that does what my computer and laptops (2) and personal DVD player all do.  (Counting the other hard drive that has issues that is 2 computers – do I have to much tech for one person?)

I don’t feel that I need one.  I do like the smaller size.  It is pretty.  The commercial makes it look even greater than the one my friend showed me.  The commercial is an advertising marvel.  It really makes me think that I must have one. 

I’m normally very resistant to advertising.  I can feel them trying to manipulate me and I become stubborn and resistant to the product.  So the very fact that it makes me drool over the iPad and start to lose my common sense must mean it is a successful marketing tool.

Now I feel a vague sense of unease about the fact that I don’t have one.  Even thought I know I don’t need it.  It’s a bit like sitting in a boat with no life vests on a very small, very sallow pond.  I know that you can drown in a couple inches of water and really should have the vests in the boat, but they really don’t feel all the necessary.

Only imagine that in reverse.  I know that an iPad is not necessary because I have things that will do all its functions that I would end up using.  Yet I feel like I really ought have one in the boat with me….