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Climate watch: choosing Kyoto's successor

December 29, 2009 7:07 am | by Jason Lomberg, Technical Editor | Articles | Comments

Global investments in renewable energy technology dipped 40% from 2008-09—this according to United Nations Industrial Development Organization Director, General Kandeh Yumkella. “Due to the current economic crisis we have seen almost a 40 percent decline in 2009 alone in these investments,” said Yumkella...

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CEC holds hearing on TV regulations

December 29, 2009 7:01 am | by Jason Lomberg, Technical Editor | Articles | Comments

Back in March, we reported on the California Energy Commission’s proposal to set a cap on the maximum active mode power usage (watts) for TV’s. All units above the maximum would be banned for sale in California—this would preclude the vast majority of Plasma, DLP, and Rear-projection TV’s.

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Autonomous military eobots: A short survey

December 29, 2009 6:48 am | by Jason Lomberg, Technical Editor | Blogs | Comments

True robot “consciousness” may be eons away, or impossible, but that hasn’t stopped its development. The end stage includes robots acting as “full ethical agents,” i.e. “those that can make explicit moral judgments”. Some feel this is unnecessary. The benefits are clear: robots wouldn’t experience the “fog of war,” or fall prey to emotions.

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FCC grills Verizon on increased Early Termination Fees

December 29, 2009 5:23 am | by Jason Lomberg, Technical Editor | Blogs | Comments

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) is investigating why Verizon Wireless doubled their Early Termination Fees for “Advanced Devices.” The $350 ETF for “Advanced Devices” went into effect 11/15, and applies to PDAs and Smartphones (such as RIM Blackberries).

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Army develops robotic helicopter sniper

December 29, 2009 5:13 am | by Jason Lomberg, Technical Editor | Blogs | Comments

Collateral damage has become synonymous with modern urban warfare. In fact, the concept of “total war,” where there is “less (or no) differentiation between combatants and non-combatants (civilians),” has existed since The Peloponnesian War. As far back as 431 BC, civilian casualties were considered an acceptable (and often desirable) outcome of total warfare.

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Company unveils world’s first commercial spaceship

December 29, 2009 5:04 am | by Jason Lomberg, Technical Editor | Blogs | Comments

These are the voyages of the VSS Enterprise. To ferry civilians into space. To collect $200,000 a head. To boldly go where few space tourists have gone before! On Monday, December 7th (an “infamous” date, to be sure), Virgin Galactic unveiled SpaceShipTwo, the world’s first commercial spaceline.

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Advanced Precision Kill Weapon System goes 4 for 4 in testing

December 29, 2009 4:45 am | by Jason Lomberg, Technical Editor | Blogs | Comments

The Advanced Precision Kill Weapon System (APKWS), a laser-guidance platform from BAE Systems, scored four hits in four shots during the final phase of testing. APKWS adds precision laser guidance capabilities to 2.75 inch rockets—specifically, those found in attack helicopters.

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60-V SiM400 MOSFET Delivers Space Savings for Small-Signal Applications

December 29, 2009 4:36 am | Product Releases | Comments

Vishay Intertechnology, Inc. (NYSE: VSH) released a 60-V n-channel power MOSFET in the tiny SOT-923 package that will provide dramatic space savings over devices in larger packages such as the SC-70 and SC-89. The smallest 60-V power MOSFET ever released, the SiM400 in the SOT-923 measures 1 mm by 0.6 mm with a maximum height profile of 0.43 mm.

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TV Demand Outlook Improves; Revenues to Resume Growth in 2010

December 29, 2009 4:33 am | News | Comments

As the world begins to emerge from the economic malaise of 2009, consumer demand for TVs continues to improve. Total TV shipments in Q3’09 were up Y/Y on a unit basis for the first time in a year, and DisplaySearch now expects that global TV revenues will rise Y/Y in Q1’10—the first time in 6 quarters.

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2010 International CES Shapes Technology Policy

December 29, 2009 4:28 am | News | Comments

Top policymakers will address key technology issues at the 2010 International CES with government officials slated to speak, including Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Chairman Julius Genachowski. Owned and produced by the Consumer Electronics Association (CEA), the 2010 International CES, the world’s largest tradeshow for consumer technology, is scheduled January 7-10, 2010 in Las Vegas.

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Specially Modified Lithium Battery Supports the Cold Chain

December 29, 2009 4:20 am | Product Releases | Comments

Tadiran, a leading manufacturer of lithium batteries, has developed long life 3.6 V lithium thionyl chloride cells capable of delivering continuous around-the-clock power for 20+ years in temperatures as low as -80ºC.

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Better airport scanners delayed by privacy fears

December 29, 2009 3:43 am | News | Comments

High-tech security scanners that might have prevented the Christmas Day attempt to blow up a jetliner have been installed in only a small number of airports around the world, in large part because of privacy concerns over the way the machines see through clothing.

Batteries Target Military Apps

December 28, 2009 5:51 am | Product Releases | Comments

TLM Military Grade cylindrical batteries feature an open circuit voltage of 4V, with a discharge capacity of 500 mAh (20 mA at 2.8V RT), capable of handling 5A continuous pulses and 15A maximum high current pulses.

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Weekend Project - Beetlebot

December 28, 2009 4:13 am | Videos | Comments

Here is a simple robot from your parts bin that avoids obstacles.

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Barnes & Noble compensates buyers for late Nook

December 23, 2009 8:45 am | News | Comments

Bookseller Barnes & Noble Inc plans to issue $100 gift certificates to people who won't receive its Nook electronic reader by December 24, if they had ordered it on time. The company, which has been bedeviled with problems in producing and delivering the e-reader in time for the holiday season, earlier this month postponed the in-store debut of the $259 device.

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