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ARM-based SoC family adds memory options for advanced smart energy, home automation

February 27, 2014 9:38 am | Silicon Laboratories Inc. | Product Releases | Comments

Silicon Labs (Austin, TX) expanded its ARM-based Ember ZigBee system-on-chip (SoC) portfolio delivering desirable wireless performance, energy efficiency and reliability for the Internet of Things (IoT). The EM358x family includes six SoC products that combine

Photos of the Day: Hotel smartphone "keys"

February 27, 2014 9:00 am | by ECN Staff | News | Comments

Starwood Hotels & Resorts wants to replace traditional plastic room keys with smartphone apps. The app would allow guests to skip check-in and go straight to their rooms. The idea of keyless entry is nothing new — see: keyless vehicle entry, industrial security, office ID cards, etc. — but applying it to hotels is certainly novel.

Hotel smartphone "keys" are a horrible idea

February 27, 2014 8:53 am | by Stephanie Carmichael, Contributor | Blogs | Comments

One forward-thinking hotel chain wants to replace those easy-to-lose, plastic room keys with a smartphone app. It’s a horrible idea. OK, let’s back up. That chain is Starwood Hotels & Resorts, which is one of the savvier hotel options out there. Starwood is smart about making the most of new and popular technology.

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90W AC/DC desktop power supply boasts industry’s slimmest package

February 26, 2014 4:25 pm | Product Releases | Comments

Power Partners (Hudson, MA) announces the PEAD90SLF Series of single output AC/DC desktop switching power supplies, which provide up to 90W of power. The standard input voltage range of 90-264VAC (47 to 63Hz) converts to output voltages of 12VDC, 18VDC, 19VDC and 24VDC....

32 HD motor designed for rough operating conditions

February 26, 2014 3:21 pm | Maxon Precision Motors, Inc. | Product Releases | Comments

The new maxon (Fall River, MA) EC-4pole 32 HD motor has been designed for extremely rough operating conditions, particularly applications in deep drilling. Deep drilling technology (called “downhole drilling” in the field of oil and gas exploration) makes it possible to recover oil and gas from depths of more than 2500 m.

Photos of the Day: The Armatix iP1 smart gun

February 26, 2014 2:37 pm | by ECN Staff | News | Comments

The Armatix GmbH .22 iP1 smart gun system works in conjunction with a wristwatch. Both the gun and watch contain RFID chips which communicate with each other and unlock the pistol. Without the watch, the gun won’t operate. In 2002, New Jersey passed a controversial gun-control that required all guns to contain personalization technology....

Tiny camera sees for the blind

February 26, 2014 2:19 pm | by Melissa Fassbender, PD&D Associate Editor | Blogs | Comments

We have the hardware and software capabilities to develop devices that are approaching the same level as human vision. The devices can recognize objects, scenarios, and context. According to Erez Na'aman, OrCam Technologies vice president of engineering and business development, OrCam took this technology in hand....

Incentives are coming for payments by phones

February 26, 2014 1:47 pm | by ANICK JESDANUN, AP Technology Writer | News | Comments

Many people use their smartphones to watch video, play games and wake them up in the morning. Some even use them to generate digital boarding passes to fly. So why not use phones to buy stuff at retail stores as well? A variety of mobile wallet systems store credit or debit card information....

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Using hypothesis testing for semiconductors

February 26, 2014 11:38 am | by Jitesh Shah, Integrated Device Technology | Articles | Comments

A semiconductor device is a composite structure built with materials that behave differently during manufacturing and in the application environment. At the same time, these materials are required to meet strict dimensional and form factor specifications for flawless integration in the system environment.  Any changes to the dimensions can negatively impact product quality...

Connector features 500 contact points/inch

February 26, 2014 11:21 am | Fujipoly America | Product Releases | Comments

Fujipoly’s (Carteret, NJ) 2005 Zebra Connector is constructed from alternating layers of conductive carbon and non-conductive silicone that are as thin as 0.0004” (0.010mm). This unique construction allows for 500 conductive layers per inch making it ideal for densely packed boards.

NanoMarkets report projects smart glass sales to the automotive sector to reach $3.2 billion by 2019

February 26, 2014 10:33 am | by ECN Staff | News | Comments

Industry analyst firm NanoMarkets has published a new report, “Smart Glass Opportunities in the Automotive Industry – 2014” covering the market for smart glass in the automotive sector.  In this report the NanoMarkets says it expects this market to reach $2.1 billion by 2019, compared with $1.0 billion in 2014.

Phone makers look to emerging markets for growth

February 26, 2014 10:09 am | by ANICK JESDANUN, AP Technology Writer | News | Comments

Here's the rub for companies: A good part of the key markets they serve already own smartphones and use them to connect various Internet services. How do you grow from there? Services from Facebook to Firefox are looking to emerging markets for the next few billion people.

What's a bitcoin? A look at the digital currency

February 26, 2014 10:03 am | by RAPHAEL SATTER, Associated Press | News | Comments

Early Tuesday, the world's most established exchange for bitcoin disappeared from the Internet, sending the price of the virtual currency tumbling and prompting fears that the world's biggest experiment in electronic cash could soon be strangled by fraud or regulation.

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TiVo founders try to reprogram Internet video

February 26, 2014 9:56 am | by MICHAEL LIEDTKE, AP Technology Writer | News | Comments

The founders of DVR pioneer TiVo are shifting their focus from broadcast TV to broadband Internet as they introduce a new device designed to make it easier for people to find and manage video. The sequel gets underway Tuesday with the release of the Qplay, a box that sorts and streams video clips compiled from all over the Internet.

Fingerprint security convenient, but not flawless

February 26, 2014 9:48 am | by ANICK JESDANUN, AP Technology Writer | News | Comments

Samsung's upcoming Galaxy S5 smartphone will be at least the third to have a fingerprint sensor for security but it's alone in letting you use that for general shopping, thanks to a partnership with PayPal. The sensor brings convenience for entering passcodes and could encourage more people to lock their phones. But fingerprint security isn't foolproof.

We don't need "smart" gun control

February 26, 2014 7:01 am | by Jason Lomberg, Technical Editor | Blogs | Comments

The nation is about to mediate a very serious gun control debate, and it has nothing to do with “assault weapons.” Rather, the advent of “smart” guns could bring about the mandated obsolescence of “dumb” firearms. Sen. Edward Markey (D-MA) has introduced legislation that would mandate all new guns be “personalized”....

Lazy kids play with lazy toys

February 26, 2014 6:37 am | by Chris Fox, PD&D Managing Editor | Blogs | Comments

Hasbro recently announced that it was revamping the Transformer product line. As the popular shape-shifters approach their 30-year anniversary, and will star in yet another movie, the company has enlisted a design and engineering team for an overhaul.

Blasting gun light produces 860 lumens

February 25, 2014 3:41 pm | Larson Electronics Llc | Product Releases | Comments

Larson Electronics has announced the release of a 10 watt high output LED blasting gun light that produces 860 lumens of intense illumination. This unit is IP66 watertight and able to withstand the rigors of aggressive and heavy duty use applications. The BLG-LEDP1X10W blasting gun light from Larson Electronics is designed for extreme durability....

Miniature infrared touch probe designed for micro-machining applications

February 25, 2014 3:32 pm | Product Releases | Comments

Hexagon Metrology (North Kingstown, RI) announced the availability of the m&h IRP40.50 infrared touch probe for the North American market. The IRP40.50 is ideal for inspection in tight spaces and was designed to address the needs of miniature machining centers.

Bi-directional battery switch in WCSP package saves 91 % PCB space over discrete MOSFETs

February 25, 2014 3:18 pm | Vishay Intertechnology | Product Releases | Comments

Vishay Intertechnology (Malvern, PA) introduced a new 6.5 mΩ bidirectional battery switch with slew rate control for low-voltage battery isolation in portable electronics, healthcare devices, and instrumentation. Designed to save 91 % PCB space compared to using discrete MOSFETs in these space-constrained applications...

Reference design features better than ±0.1% accuracy

February 25, 2014 3:08 pm | Maxim Integrated Products, Inc. | Product Releases | Comments

Factories can transmit industrial temperatures with the Novato (MAXREFDES16#) reference design, a 4–20mA loop-powered temperature transmitter with the HART communication protocol from Maxim Integrated Products, Inc. (San Jose, CA). This smart transmitter enables low-power temperature measurement from -200°C to +850°C with accuracy better than ±0.1% or ±1.0°C.

Hints to help ensure multi-vendor interoperability in PXI-based systems

February 25, 2014 2:39 pm | by Alan Lesko, Agilent Technologies | Agilent Technologies | Articles | Comments

To meet a specific need, system creators often assemble test solutions that incorporate a variety of hardware and software elements. One key benefit of accepted industry standards is the ability to pick and choose among elements offered by multiple vendors. Achieving success with—and confidence in—the integration of a multi-vendor solution depends on compatibility at the mechanical, electrical and software levels.

New approach to chip design could yield light speed computing

February 25, 2014 2:38 pm | by EurekAlert! | News | Comments

Every second, your computer must process billions of computational steps to produce even the simplest outputs. Imagine if every one of those steps could be made just a tiny bit more efficient. "It would save precious nanoseconds," explained Northeastern University assistant professor of physics Swastik Kar.

Microcontroller exhibits 2.93DMIPs/MHz processing power

February 25, 2014 12:49 pm | Ftdi Chip | Product Releases | Comments

FTDI Chip (Tigard, OR) releases the FT900, a 32-bit microcontroller unit (MCU) which is one of two initial devices in the company’s new application oriented controller (AOC) product lines. The FT900 has been developed for high-speed, computational intensive tasks.

Embedded graphics module features CoreAVI software drivers

February 25, 2014 12:37 pm | Curtiss-Wright Controls | Product Releases | Comments

Curtiss-Wright Corporation (Ashburn, VA) announced that its Defense Solutions division has begun shipping its highest performance embedded graphics module, the new VPX3-716 3U OpenVPX multi-head graphics display card, the first based on the next generation AMD Embedded Radeon E8860 “Adelaar” GPU.

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