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Backplane connector transfers data at 25 Gbps

September 25, 2013 4:57 pm | Product Releases | Comments

The STRADA Whisper backplane family was designed with your end customer’s need for high-performing, high bandwidth systems in mind. Its revolutionary design transfers data at blinding speeds of 25 Gbps and offers unparalleled scalability up to 40 Gbps—allowing you to achieve efficient future system upgrades without costly backplane or midplane redesigns.

Check out dogs frolicking in "Bullet Time"

September 25, 2013 12:07 pm | by Jason Lomberg, Technical Editor | Blogs | Comments

If this doesn’t warm your heart, then I’d check your pulse. Remember that cool “Bullet Time” visual effect from The Matrix (and about a dozen other movies and video games since)? A handful of amateur filmmakers used the technique to film dogs at play, and it’s every bit as delightful as it sounds.

Surrender your smartphone, save 10% off your bill

September 24, 2013 3:02 pm | by Kasey Panetta, Managing Editor | Blogs | Comments

In this week’s episode of 'Getting People to Stop Acting Like Jerks and Start Acting Like Human Beings', a restaurant in Beirut has decided they’re going to start bribing customers to put down the smartphone and interact with actual people at the actual table.

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Feeling angry? Blame your social network

September 20, 2013 4:10 pm | by Chris Warner, Executive Editor | Blogs | Comments

The internet has often been described as a very large town square. In fact, one such comparison has been attributed to Bill Gates. Unfortunately, not everything that goes on in the town square is civilized. Stocks, tar and feathers, and angry mobs come to mind. It’s not surprising, then, that much of what we communicate online among our social networks isn’t the most cheerful subject matter.

Literature finds the brain

September 20, 2013 3:42 pm | by M. Simon, Technical Contributor | Blogs | Comments

Being a supposedly semi-literate engineer and a writer to boot this article on the intersection of the humanities and brain science caught my attention. Especially given this recounting of previous failures: Jonathan Gottschall, who has written extensively about using evolutionary theory to explain fiction, said “it’s a new moment of hope” in an era when everyone is talking about “the death of the humanities.”

Will vehicle-to-vehicle communication ever be a thing?

September 20, 2013 3:38 pm | by Editor | Blogs | Comments

Here at ECN, we love hearing from our own readers about different trends and new technologies you guys are working with! We like it so much we're devoting an entire issue to what our readers think about the impact of different technologies on their jobs and projects. Our forth and final category is automotive technology.

This is what the world’s largest walking robot looks like

September 19, 2013 3:20 pm | by Kasey Panetta, Managing Editor | Blogs | Comments

Meet Tradinno, the world’s largest, walking robot who also happens to be a fire-breathing, blood-spewing dragon of death and destruction. Okay, the death and destruction part is hear-say, but the rest is true. Tradinno is 51-feet long and almost 30-feet high with a 40-foot wingspan.

Lego releases female in STEM career ... and she’s no “Lady Scientist”

September 16, 2013 2:23 pm | by Jason Lomberg, Technical Editor | Blogs | Comments

It seems the Danish toy brick conglomerate has finally accepted the fact that womenfolk inhabit the STEM fields. Earlier this month, Lego released the company’s first female scientist, Professor C. Bodin – and she’s not clad in "girly" clothing or given the patronizing title of "Lady Scientist."

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Ohio tries to put a good face on its unsettling new surveillance practice

September 13, 2013 12:38 pm | by Chris Warner, Executive Editor | Blogs | Comments

If you expect and enjoy a fair amount of anonymity in public, the state of Ohio and perhaps the state you live in have a program that will fly in the face of that increasingly antiquated notion. According to a report in the Cincinnati Enquirer, police in Ohio are able to use facial recognition technology to match a person’s photo....

Why Apple's iPhone 5s fingerprint scanner is the dumbest feature

September 12, 2013 11:28 am | by Kasey Panetta, Managing Editor | Blogs | Comments

It came to my attention at a dinner last night that I am not fully supportive of the new iPhone. As you might have noticed from previous posts, I am an Apple FanGirl. I have a MacBook Pro, a Macbook Air, an iPad, an iPhone 5, an Apple TV, and various generations of the iPod (iPod Mini anyone?).

Everything you need to know about picking the right circuit protection

September 11, 2013 3:33 pm | by M. Simon, Technical Contributor | Articles | Comments

When it comes to circuit protection, the first line of resistance is resistance. Resistance limits current flow and resistance, in conjunction with capacitance, slows the rate of increase of voltage, giving other protection measures in the circuit time to act. But, resistance has its drawbacks. If the current through the resistance is significant, it wastes power....

Fighting an invisible enemy: How UV robots are clearing the way for germ-free hospitals

September 11, 2013 2:17 pm | by Kasey Panetta, Managing Editor | Articles | Comments

Though medical devices are always moving towards less invasive, more effective technology, they face a constant, persistent and ever-evolving enemy in deadly bacteria and infections. Healthcare-associated infections (HAIs) can be caused by any infectious agent and result in 99,0000 deaths per year, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Has global cooling begun? Arctic ice caps grow by 60% in a year

September 11, 2013 11:21 am | by Jason Lomberg, Technical Editor | Blogs | Comments

The arctic will be "ice-free by 2013." This was typical of the breathless pronouncements made by scientists, climatologists, and even NASA over the last decade or so. All the while, the summers were getting colder and the ice caps more voluminous — quite a bit more, apparently. According to a report in the Daily Mail, the Arctic ice cap grew by nearly a million square miles from 2012-2013, an increase of 60% year over year.

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Widespread license plate scanning presents an open road for abuse

September 9, 2013 5:09 pm | by Chris Warner, Executive Editor | Articles | Comments

“If you didn’t do anything wrong, you have nothing to worry about.” Well that’s good. But for those of us who are only human and occasionally make mistakes or sometimes do things that are nobody’s business but our own, please keep reading.

Women in the workplace: The 1940s guide to gender stereotypes

September 9, 2013 2:11 pm | by Jason Lomberg, Technical Editor | Blogs | Comments

Watch out for women in the workplace. They’re jealous of each other, more sensitive than men, and SCARY! At least that’s according to this hilariously outdated instructional video from 1944 which probably did more to perpetuate gender stereotypes than shore them up.

NSA just needs a better name, new service offerings

September 9, 2013 9:50 am | by Andy Marken, President, Marken Communications | Blogs | Comments

The National Security Agency (NSA) isn’t doing much more than any red-blooded, we’re-in-this for-the-money cloud service or social media organization is doing. They’re scrounging through all the information that just happens to pass their way to find something of interest, something useful.

This is how you prepare an observatory for space

September 5, 2013 4:27 pm | by Kasey Panetta, Managing Editor | Blogs | Comments

When you think about testing, you’re probably picturing a bench with the component and a few related tools. However, when you work for NASA and you’re testing an observatory for space, it’s a little bit of a different situation. This is NASA’s Lunar Atmosphere and Dust Environment Explorer (LADEE, to its friends), which is being prepared for its launch on September 6.

"Internet addiction" is a real disease ... according to new inpatient facility

September 4, 2013 4:57 pm | by Jason Lomberg, Technical Editor | Blogs | Comments

Waste lots of time on the Internet looking at cat pictures and playing Minecraft? You should immediately fork over $14K to an inpatient facility in Pennsylvania — the first of its kind in the US – to treat your chronic internet addiction. Don’t believe that Internet addiction is a real disease? Shows your ignorance — you obviously don’t have a “Dr.” in front of your name.

Top 10 must-read posts from August

September 3, 2013 11:17 am | by Kasey Panetta, Managing Editor | Blogs | Comments

Here’s a rundown of the most read, most popular, most awesome articles on the web. Take a look at what you missed the first time around or check up on an old favorite to see the conversation in the comments. Keep checking out the Lead at www.ecnmag.com and follow us on Twitter @ecnonline for our most up-to-date articles.

The evolution of miniaturization within UAV connector technology

August 29, 2013 12:04 pm | by Derek Hunt, Omnetics Connector Corporation | Omnetics Connector Corporation | Blogs | Comments

Throughout the world, military and aerospace engineers are focused on new design efforts to not only modernize existing operations, but at the same time, miniaturize these efforts and electronics to improve flexibility and portability as well as overall survivability in the field.

Take a virtual tour of the world's largest solar thermal plant

August 28, 2013 4:06 pm | by Kasey Panetta, Managing Editor | Blogs | Comments

Ivanpah Solar Electric Generating system is the world’s largest solar thermal plant. The project, started in October 2010, is located on 3,500 acres in California’s Mojave Desert—50 miles northwest of Needles California and five miles from the California-Nevada border—on federal land managed by the Bureau of Land Management.

The 1950s guide to using a rotary dial phone

August 26, 2013 2:00 pm | by Kasey Panetta, Managing Editor | Blogs | Comments

As we grow accustomed to the newest versions of smart phones, computers, and tablets, it’s sometimes difficult to remember their humble beginnings. Luckily, it’s also sometimes hilarious. This is a video that explains how to use a rotary phone to make a call. While it’s somewhat funny to watch now, it’s also a little funny to think about the fact that in a short time—five to ten years...

Do we need tougher cyberbullying legislation?

August 23, 2013 4:25 pm | by Jason Lomberg, Technical Editor | Blogs | Comments

A Huffington Post article draws attention to a disturbing new form of cyberbullying: “RIP trolling”, or the practice of trolling online memorials to mock their alleged insincerity. The article champions “digital proxies” who can help filter out distressing online content for the mourners. This also raises an important point: Do we need stricter cyberbullying legislation?

This is what a 550-ton hovercraft landing on a Russian beach looks like

August 21, 2013 3:53 pm | by Kasey Panetta, Managing Editor | Blogs | Comments

Alright, so technically the beach is a military zone and, technically, it's not a beach that people should be swimming from or sunbathing on, but that is one scary-looking piece of military equipment. According to a Russian defense ministry spokesperson, it's actually a government-owned beach and the landing was part of some military practice maneuvers.

Robotic barista automates your coffee addiction

August 21, 2013 9:56 am | by Jason Lomberg, Technical Editor | Blogs | Comments

Can’t live without your morning cup of joe, but hate dealing with snooty baristas at hipster coffee shops and the imprecise hands of flesh-and-blood humans? Modern technology has finally married our addiction to hot, caffeinated beverages with our similar – but no less potent – love of wacky vending machines – the robot barista.

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