Dwayne Phillips ' Day Book

Items I happen to view each day. Science, Techonology, Management, Culture, and of course Writing

This is my day book for this week. I have modeled this after science fiction and computer writer Jerry Pournelle's view, or as he calls it, his Day Book. I encourage you to see Jerry Pournelle's site and subscribe to his services.

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This week: November 14-20, 2011

Summary of this week:

Monday - Tuesday - Wednesday - Thursday - Friday - Saturday - Sunday

Monday November 14,  2011

The .xxx suffix to URLs is coming. Lots of non-pornographic organizations are grabbing the addresses (e.g. walmart.xxx) as a defensive measure.

Let's talk multiple cores!

Intel announces a six-core i7 processor for PCs.

AMD releases a 16-core processor, not for PCs. These processors will go in the next Cray supercomputers.

HTC will show a four-core processor in a tablet at Mobile World Congress 2012.

Lenovo will also release a four-core processor in a tablet.

"If a message can be interpreted in several ways, it will be interpreted in a manner that maximizes the damage."

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Tuesday November 15, 2011

AT&T and Samsung show a new Galaxy Tab with LTE. These non-Apple tablets are priced too high.

Recession? Not in some areas in some markets. Call of Duty Modern Warfare 3 sells 6.5 million copies in 24 hours ($400 gross). This is some sort of new record as we keep redefining success.

The portable computing world is going thinner. In the first half of 2011, the MacBook Air was 8% of Apple's portable market. In the second half, it is 28%.

I like this design, sort of moving forward to the past when people had foldable furnitue and transformed rooms from one thing to another. A 450 square foot apartment can have three or four different rooms.

The prices of the different Ultrabooks has fallen faster than predicted. This is good news for the consumers and for Intel.

Grades were changed electronically at Santa Clara University, and the FBI was called. Is everyone ready for national electronic health records?

A German museum builds a replica of an 1880s electric vehicle. How in the world did someone make such a thing in the 1880s without Federal government subsidies and tax credits?

This case protects an iPad from a 1,300-foot drop. Now that is a drop test.

Little robots might replace illegal aliens in the agriculture industry. Probably not any time soon.

Mac users are not flocking to OS 10.7 (Lion).

The security code of Apple's Siri has been broken.

Washington D.C. is helping the rest of us by kicking into regulating Silicon Valley and the innovation industry. Your tax dollars at waste.

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Wednesday November 16, 2011

Yet another study shows that telecommuting works well.

I like this, the Internet coffee shop code of conduct.

Barnes and Noble pulls  a good trick - their tablet is in stores early. Here is an unboxing hands-on video.

And here is HP's Ultrabook - the Folio. They show a nine-hour battery life. I like that.

Who needs single-digit-core processors? Intel shows a 50-core processor at a supercomputing conference. Like this article mentions, what kind of games will our kids (my grandson) play on a 50-core machine?

VISA (the credit card guys) will launch a PayPal-like digital-wallet-like service next year. It will be called V.me.

Qualcomm keeps making chips that allow all sorts of wireless interfaces to your computing devices. The latest adds LTE to a group of other 4G standards.

Intel's 4004 4-bit microprocessor turned 40 years old yesterday. It changed the world.

Dell's sales of PCs is down, but profits are up. I think that is called efficiency, and if you are unemployed, that is not good news.

Google will have its big music service announcement today.

This is one of those ideas that should have come to fruition years ago. A bicycle that provides power to recharge your USB devices. 40 years ago I rode a bicycle that would charge my headlight. Again, why so long for this obvious application?

And now for something silly - airbags built into your backpack. I guess there are some low-probability events where this would come in handy.

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Thursday November 17, 2011

I love this one - a teenager in Honduras has built an eye-tracking system for handicapped people - only $300 each.

A look inside the Kindle Fire
. The battery consumes most of the space, which is not surprising.

The Mac now has 5% of the world's PC market. That is a new high. They other 95% is, well,  mostly Windows machines.

Google announces its music service. And another news post on the event. And another one.

A reminder that you can write plenty with a pencil and notebook (the paper kind). And here is the site for the official Field Notes product line. I love it.

This is where wind power and solar power actually work - in remote locations.

And something from my employer - ITT Exelis - new night vision device.

T-Mobile has doubled the data rate of its HSPA+ service and now covers the entire U.S.

Thailand is recovering from its floods, and Sony is starting camera production again.

Here is the Acer Ultrabook offering.

Google claims that there are 200 million Android devices out there with 550,000 activated every day.

Is there anyone in favor of the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA)? Why, yes there is - the AFL-CIO. Why didn't I guess that?

Amazon has one of the world's top 50  most powerful computers. It powers the Silk browser in the cloud.

Neat playing cards - the look like excellent tools to help kids learn to count and read.

Hardware-only companies (Dell, HP, Acer) will probably quit making tablets next year. They can't compete with companies that make tablets and serve large amounts of content (Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Apple). Who would have thought that Barnes and Noble would knock Dell out of a segment of the computer industry?

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Friday November 18, 2011

Michael Arrington is a well know, successful, tech business person who is 90 pounds overweight and shares some experiences at losing weight.

What do kids 6 to 12 want for Christmas? An iPad.

They want to join the crowd - 88% of worldwide tablet web browsing is from iPads.

How to buy an iPod. Yes, Apple still sells lots of iPods.

The AOL, Huffington Post, TechCrunch flail containues as more people are resigning. Is this a movie like that Twilight series or something?

First Amazon had an eReader, then a tablet, and speculation indicates a smartphone in 2012.

Someone, from NASA, gives an answer to those myterious shapes found in the Chinese desert by Google imagery - calibration sites for satellites.

Study indicates that we remember more than we remember. Here is a tip - take great care when playing with the human mind.

A 35-foot robotic snake. This one is made as kind of a cute stunt, but many robotics problems go away when you allow the robot to come in contact with all supporting surfaces, like a snake crawling on its belly.

Believe it or not - Cadbury and Nestle' had a three-year court battle over the color purple. Cadbury won.

George Will explains and shows how Federal spending keeps going up and up and up regardless of all the super-duper-committees and draconian cuts and all that stuff.

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Saturday November 19, 2011

Four of Apple's "secrets:" focus, simplicity, courage, and commitment.

Sergey Brin of Google donates $500K to Wikipedia.

This is pretty good - a rearview mirror as the interface to computing in your car.

Hackers breaking into water plants and other utilities? Maybe not, but definitely possible.

Amazon may ship six million Fire tablets this quarter.

These Wave Gliders will start exploring the oceans autonomously. It seems that 95% of the world's oceans are still unexplored. I am not sure what that means other than the oceans are really, really big compared to my backyard.

NASA has stitched together 70,000 images of the moon for a pretty darn good map.

DARPA continues its testing of a hypersonic aircraft.

I love this; it is a computer with a dual-core processor and lots of other goodies and it is the size of a USB memory stick. Plug it into any screen (HDMI or USB) and you have a computer that is much more powerful than most computers I have owned in my life.

The numbers show that Mac users are downloading more and more open source software.

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Sunday November 20, 2011

Alistair Cockburn designs a one-semester undergraduate course in software engineering. The emphasis is on what an employer wants a new employee to know.
Photographs of the world's ten fastest supercomputers. Some just look like racks gray equipment while others are decorated. I remember the orange Cray loveseat. Its appearance had much to do with its popularity.

A Chinese model of eBook publishing. All works are free until an author becomes popular. At that time, the readers have to pay.

Some thoughts on traveling and managing debt. Here is a big tip: don't have any debt. This is a possible state of being.

Now this is a fine, handmade, leather and wood iPad case.

An Illinois water system was hacked. There have been several of these hacked in the last month. It just shows how important computer-controlled systems should not be connected to the Internet. This goes for all important systems (like your home and your health records and your elections).

You can buy "A Charlie Brown Christmas" for your mobile device. Cool.

A video review from someone who likes the Amazon Kindle Fire. At $200, it appears to be a good device for information consumers (read books, view videos, listen to music) and not so good for information producers (writers).

Here is some good information on video blogging, tools and techniques.

I like this - get a perspective on your problems. Read the little story in the post.

The "Expert Enough Manifestor." Something to read and consider.

Life as a writer - sometimes you have to cut 20,000 words out of your novel. Folks, it is your novel; it is not you. There will be other novels and other words.

Ideas for how a freelancer and writer can show gratitude to others.

Some thoughts on writing eBooks.

Setting goals for yourself as a writer and for the characters in your stories. Goals work well for some writers and not so well for others. As usual, try it. Use it if it works and forget it otherwise.

Some ideas on nurturing and organizing your writing ideas. I like the mind maps and using index cards. Don't like to outline? That is fine. Scribble your story notes on index cards and spread them out on the floor. The dining room table works as well, but sometimes you want to eat at the dining room table. Everything is in front of you.

A list of ten things that women only do in novels. The lesson? Don't put these in your fiction writing if you want to write reality.

When reviewing your writing, read it aloud. I work with college students on their writing. When I have a writer whose paper is full of grammar errors, I ask them to read their paper aloud to me. They find all their errors remarkably fast and learn a method of proofreading.

I will try to remember to do this - write myself an annual review. Some things I did this year: (1) Passed the PMI Project Management Professional certification. (2) Put 50+ short stories up on Smashwords. (3) Started writing short stories again.

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