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Retailers employ crony capitalism in push for online sales tax

December 5, 2012 5:11 pm | by Jason Lomberg, Technical Editor | Comments

The Retail Industry Leaders Association (RILA) has written a letter to Congress urging them to pass the Marketplace Fairness Act by the end of the year. This "e-fairness legislation" would allegedly "close the decades-old loophole enjoyed by online-only retailers" and "restore free market principles."

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LCD TVs get dimmer to lower backlight costs

December 3, 2012 1:59 pm | by Jimmy Kim, NPD DisplaySearch | Comments

Historically, TVs have had brightness higher than 400 nits, as they are often placed in the center of a large, bright, room and viewed from large distances and viewing angles. In some cases, however it is placed in sunlight, close to a window. On the other hand, display brightness of less than 300 nits is typically sufficient for an IT device....

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Thinking inside the box: Getting heat out of sealed enclosures

December 3, 2012 11:59 am | by XP Power | Comments

In harsh environments where a sealed enclosure is necessary, baseplate cooling is a simple and inexpensive solution to thermal management of power supplies, says Peter Blyth, XP Power. A new approach using discrete components can make baseplate cooled power supplies smaller, more efficient and more flexible.

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Tomorrow’s LCDs: Porsche performance, Vespa mileage

November 30, 2012 5:24 pm | by Dave Lamb, PHD, and Shannon Siefken, 3M | 3M Electronics Solutions Division | Comments

Modern LCDs are like imported sports cars. They are sleek. Radiant.Richly colorful. And they aren’t just pleasing to the eye: they’re also fast and responsive. Powerful.They ruin you for older, lesser models. Given that superb performance, does it seem a little defensive to add that your monitor or television also gets good mileage? Shouldn’t we just shut up and enjoy the ride?

Why Android is beating Apple

November 29, 2012 3:26 pm | by Kasey Panetta, Associate Editor | Comments

It wasn’t so long ago the Apple was the phone to have. Yes, there were the holdouts who took a dislike to the brand’s smartphone monopoly, but for the most part, if you wanted a phone that worked, you took a trip to Steve Jobs land. It seems, however, that the tide is now changing....

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Roundtable: Predictions for 2013

November 29, 2012 3:20 pm | Comments

Experts in the  industry weight in on the question: What trends and technologies have impacted the industry in 2012 and what does that mean for 2013?  In their responses the industry experts talk about LEDs, chips and what will be coming up in the next year.

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The cause of engineering project delays – multitasking

November 29, 2012 12:21 pm | by Sanjeev Gupta, CEO of Realization | Comments

Engineers have come to expect that most projects will be delivered late, out of scope and over budget even though to all appearances everyone is working long hours and putting their noses to the grindstone. It’s just become an accepted fact of the industry, and it’s a shame, because it doesn’t have to be that way.

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Brainstorm: Holiday wish lists

November 28, 2012 3:56 pm | Comments

Like many engineers, all of my best ideas happen in the shower ... along with bad singing. So, for my Christmas this year, I’m hoping for a waterproof, wireless headset. There appear to be one or two on the market, but I need one coupled with an app that can cancel out background noise (say from a shower head)....

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7 things I am thankful for...

November 20, 2012 3:21 pm | by Kasey Panetta, Associate Editor | Comments

When I was little, at some point during the Thanksgiving season we would write down things we were thankful for. It was usually at school, written on a turkey that I’d made by outlining my hand, and it was usually things like candy, puppies, family, food, and probably whatever else was in my direct line of sight while I was writing.

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Top 5 free apps for the holiday season

November 20, 2012 9:22 am | by Kasey Panetta, Associate Editor | Comments

Back in the dog days of summer, we offered up a list of the 6 must-have apps for a stress-free summer. It was all about keeping kids distracted, watching your spending, and utilizing apps that got you to the relaxation phase faster.Now we’ve entered a season that can feel entirely the opposite of relaxing: holiday season

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Protecting cables from oil damage

November 19, 2012 4:35 pm | by LAPP | Comments

Of all the chemical exposures that can affect the life and performance of electrical cables, oil is one of the most damaging. Used as a coolant and lubricant in many industrial and infrastructure settings, oil can inflict molecular damage on the polymers used for cable insulation and jacketing.

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This watch could save your kid’s life

November 19, 2012 11:35 am | by Kasey Panetta, Associate Editor | Comments

If you’ve ever felt that heart-in-throat, hyperventilating, out-of-body feeling of not being able to find your kid in a park or after school, only to have her reappear after a few seconds of mind-numbing panic, you can understand why someone would want to invent a Lojack for children.

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In defense of the Tesla Model S

November 19, 2012 9:10 am | by Kasey Panetta, Associate Editor | Comments

When Motor Trend announced an electric car was their pick for Car of the Year, something tells me you could have heard a pin drop in the car world. An electric car? They must have rigged the vote.Well, my friends, I hate to break it to you, but Consumer Reports just agreed with Motor Trend,

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Fundamentals of battery fuel-gauging

November 16, 2012 10:49 am | by Karthik Kadirvel, Texas Instruments, www.ti.com | Comments

The battery fuel gauging system is the component responsible for determining the energy remaining in the battery. In this article, a battery fuel gauging system used in single-cell applications is described. This is followed by a discussion of the various algorithms used by the fuel-gauging system to determine battery capacity along with the pros and cons of the algorithms.

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Chemistry, application requirements help determine long-life battery selection

November 16, 2012 10:20 am | by Sol Jacobs, Tadiran Batteries, www.tadiranbat.com | Comments

Lithium chemistry is preferred for long-life applications because its intrinsic negative potential exceeds that of all other metals. Lithium is the lightest non-gaseous metal, offering the highest specific energy (energy per unit weight) and energy density (energy per unit volume) of all available battery chemistries.

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