Displaying articles for: 12-25-2011 - 12-31-2011
It just came to my attention that Popular Science magazine released an interactive tool that charts the frequency of any word in the full-text archive of Popular Science since 1872. This site transforms:
“1,563 issues into mineable data. By counting the frequency of every word in a 1.35-gigabyte file containing the full text from those issues”
There is also a powerful visualization tool that provides an interesting look at when certain terms we use regularly today first appeared in the magazine.
A Bloomberg article recently discussed the decline in the price of photovoltaic panels in 2011. The article discusses the fact that “The spot price of solar panels has fallen 47 percent this year, according to Bloomberg New Energy Finance, while crude oil prices have gained 8 percent in New York.”
You may think this means there may be a significant burst in solar installation in 2012, but these lower costs may not be sustainable though, since the actual costs involved in the production of solar cells have not declined and is more of a side effect of overproduction. The costs of installing solar cells has declined significantly as better techniques are being used today. The DIY market is responding to the reduction is solar panel costs as well.
It will be interesting to see what happens next.
Transistors are a foundational component in active electronic circuits. Cotton is one of the foundational components of today’s textiles. Putting their capabilities together will provide applications that we couldn’t dream of before.
Researchers in the United States, Italy, and France have invented transistors made from cotton fibers. These threads can be woven into clothing capable of performing electronic functions enabling new applications like sensing and displaying information. Applications like smart hospital gowns, carpet that measures traffic and dynamic T-shirt displays are some of the more obvious applications.
To make a fiber conductive, the team coated each strand with gold nanoparticles and added a thin layer of a conductive polymer. They created an organic electrochemical transistor and an organic field-effect transistor by doping the conductive fibers with a semiconducting polymer.
Smart clothing is definitely something that will be in fashion throughout the rest of the decade. Picture courtesy of Textiles Nanotechnology Laboratory at Cornell University.
I gave my predictions for 2012 a few weeks back, and here are some predictions from others...
Security Predictions for 2012, InfoWorld
5 gadget predictions for 2012, ComputerWeekly
Gartner Predicts 2012, Gartner, Inc.
6 Crazy Tech Predictions for 2012, Mashable
12 predictions for 2012, NESTA (National Endowment for Science Technology and the Arts)
Smart Guide 2012: 10 ideas you’ll want to understand, New Scientist
Five big data predictions for 2012, O’Reilly Radar
Tech highlights of 2011. Predictions for 2012, Smarter Computing Blog
Four Personal Finance Technology Trends for 2012, Time Techland