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A peep into Future Technology

Microsoft cuts Asia Xbox 360 Price

Now Microsoft has also reduced the price of Xbox by whopping $100…..!!!

The company said in a statement that the price cuts for the Xbox 360 Elite model, which comes with a 120-gigabyte hard drive, will take effect in Hong Kong, South Korea, Singapore and Taiwan starting Sept. 10.

The price of the Elite model in Hong Kong will be cut by 28.2% to HK$2,369, while its price in South Koreawill be 14.1% lower at KRW419,000. The price in Singapore will be cut by 26.5% to S$499, while Taiwan will see a 25.9% price reduction to NT$10,360.

The announcement follows Microsoft’s price cuts for the high-end Xbox 360 Elite model and the mid-range Pro model in the U.S. announced Thursday. The price for the Elite there will be cut by $100 to $299.99. The Pro, which comes with a smaller hard drive, will sell for $50 less at $249.99 and will be phased out once the current supplies run out. The cuts take effect Friday.

The price cuts come just days after high-definition game console rival Sony Corp. (SNE) said it would cut the price of its PlayStation 3 console by $100 to $299 as that console has struggled against lower-priced competitors. A slimmer version of the gaming console will debut on Sept. 1.

Bowman said during the interview that the price cut had been planned for some time “as part of economics” the company is seeing in the videogames business.

Microsoft also announced that Facebook and Twitter services will be available to paying Xbox Live subscribers later this year.

August 28, 2009 Posted by | Entertainment | , , | 2 Comments

Sony PS3 Slim : Playing a brave front in Gaming console-War

With rival Microsoft’s Xbox outselling the Playstation 3, Sony has unveiled the overhauled Playstation 3. Dubbed the PS3 Slim, the unit features a revised cell processor, 120GB hard drive and is smaller, lighter and cheaper than its predecessor.
Sony have put up several changes in a bid to close the gap and return to their glory days as leader in the gaming console domain.
The new console is around a third smaller and lighter, and is also quieter – thanks largely to a Cell processor using the 45 nanometer manufacturing process (as opposed to the previous 65nm Cell). The smaller Cell is said to generate around 15% less fan noise, and is cooler, with around 30% less energy consumption.
The PS3 Slim’s integrated 120GB storage capacity virtually ensures relevance for years to come even if downloadable high definition content becomes available. The console continues to feature Wi-Fi connectivity as well as a Blu-ray player, with Bravia television owners sure to appreciate the Bravia Sync feature, whereby their existing remotes can be used to navigate the system in place of the expensive and awkward PS3 Blu-ray version. An additional system “standby function” will shut down the PS3 Slim when the Bravia TV is switched off.
While removing the option to install an alternative operating system like Linux may disappoint some, Sony looks to be focusing on increasing the PS3’s accessibility to the wider population of gamers. With a reported Wii-esque motion sensitive wand in the works, the emphasis looks to be on appealing to the casual gamer as well as the fanatic.
Sony have simplified the branding, doing away with the Spiderman-type logo of the Playstation 3, opting instead to emboss a simple “PS3” on the console front. The casing has also reverted from glossy to the more traditional black matte finish.
Lower production costs have seen the price for the PS3 Slim, on sale September 1st, reduced to US$299. With this lower price point potentially making the unit a viable option to those previously deterred by higher cost, and with Micrsoft’s Xbox expected to make a similar move, will it be “game on” once more?
Check out the Playstation website for a closer look.

With rival Microsoft’s Xbox outselling the Playstation 3, Sony has unveiled the overhauled Playstation 3. Dubbed the PS3 Slim, the unit features a revised cell processor, 120GB hard drive and is smaller, lighter and cheaper than its predecessor.

Sony have put up several changes in a bid to close the gap and return to their glory days as leader in the gaming console domain.

The new console is around a third smaller and lighter, and is also quieter – thanks largely to a Cell processor using the 45 nanometer manufacturing process (as opposed to the previous 65nm Cell). The smaller Cell is said to generate around 15% less fan noise, and is cooler, with around 30% less energy consumption.

The PS3 Slim’s integrated 120GB storage capacity virtually ensures relevance for years to come even if downloadable high definition content becomes available. The console continues to feature Wi-Fi connectivity as well as a Blu-ray player, with Bravia television owners sure to appreciate the Bravia Sync feature, whereby their existing remotes can be used to navigate the system in place of the expensive and awkward PS3 Blu-ray version. An additional system “standby function” will shut down the PS3 Slim when the Bravia TV is switched off.

Sony have simplified the branding, doing away with the Spiderman-type logo of the Playstation 3, opting instead to emboss a simple “PS3” on the console front. The casing has also reverted from glossy to the more traditional black matte finish.

Lower production costs have seen the price for the PS3 Slim, on sale September 1st, reduced to US$299. With this lower price point potentially making the unit a viable option to those previously deterred by higher cost, and with Micrsoft’s Xbox expected to make a similar move, will it be “game on” once more?

Check out the Playstation website for a closer look.

August 28, 2009 Posted by | Entertainment | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Feed The Turtles

July 10, 2009 Posted by | Entertainment | Leave a comment

Efficient Nanopillar Solar Cells….and Cheap Too…..!!

Nanopillar Solar CellResearchers at the University of California, Berkeley, have made a new kind of solar cell by growing an array of upright nanoscale pillars on aluminum foil. They make bendable solar cells by encapsulating the entire cell inside a transparent, rubbery polymer. The design, the researchers suggest, could lead to solar cells that cost less than conventional silicon photovoltaics.

The nanopillars allow the researchers to use cheaper, lower-quality materials than those used in conventional silicon and thin-film technologies.

So the cost would decrease 10 folds when it will be made on a big scale.

The solar cells are made of uniform 500-nanometer-high pillars of cadmium sulfide embedded in a thin film of cadmium telluride. Both materials are semiconductors used in thin-film solar cells.

In an online Nature Materials paper, it was shown that the cells have an efficiency of about 6 percent in transforming sunlight into electricity as compared to other nano pillars grown with expensive materials which have an efficiency of 2%.

In conventional cells, silicon absorbs light and creates free electrons, which need to get to the electrical circuit before they get trapped at defects or impurities in the material. This requires extremely pure, expensive crystalline silicon to achieve the most efficient photovoltaic devices.

The nanopillar design splits up silicon’s duties: the material surrounding the pillars absorbs light and creates electrons, and the pillars transport them to the electrical circuit. This increases efficiency in two ways. The closely packed pillars trap light between them, helping the surrounding material absorb more. The electrons also have a very short distance to travel through the pillars, so there are fewer chances of their getting trapped at defects. That means you can use low-quality, less expensive materials.

The researchers also intend to try other semiconductor materials for the pillars and surrounding material. The fabrication process is compatible with a wide range of semiconductors, and other combinations could increase the efficiency.

July 6, 2009 Posted by | Future Technology, Solar Energy | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Firefox 3.5 Launched..What Next…!? Firefox Aims to Unplug Scripting Attacks

The latest version of Firefox(3.5) is here with so many features……namely User Experience, Performance, Security, Customization…..!!

Still there is so much Firefox is looking ahead to……..Here is the most significant one which is up the sleeve…..

The matter of concern is how websites can block code from unknown sources. Here, firefox wants to Unplug Scripting Attacks.

IllustrationSites that rely on user-created content can unwittingly be employed to attack their own users via JavaScript and other common forms of Web code. This security issue, known as cross-site scripting (XSS), can, for example, allow an attacker to access a victim’s account and steal personal data.

Now the makers of the Firefox Web browser plan to adopt a strategy to help block the attacks. The technology, called Content Security Policy (CSP), will let a website’s owner specify what Internet domains are allowed to host the scripts that run on its pages.

XSS attacks have caused numerous headaches, particularly for social networks and Web 2.0 companies, allowing attackers to hijack eBay auctions, for example, and create a worm that caused MySpace users to automatically befriend a user named “Samy.” The core problem is that many sites allow untrusted users to add their own content to pages while Web browsers treat all content returned by a website as coming from the same entity. If the website is trusted, the content created by an unknown user is trusted as well. The issue has been counted as one of the 25 most serious coding problems by the SANS Institute, a training organization for system administrators and programmers.

In many cases, Web companies can hunt down and restrict dangerous user-created content. But because many sites are so big, finding and fixing all vulnerabilities is a time-consuming and difficult task. Moreover, many sites, notably social-networking ones, want to allow their users some leeway to create interesting content.

Mozilla’s CSP will break with Web browsers’ tradition of treating all scripts the same way. Instead, it will require that participating websites put their scripts in separate files and explicitly state which domains are allowed to run the scripts.

An engineer at the Mozilla Foundation, Gervase Markham, championed the idea within the Firefox team and further developed the technology, and noted Web security researcher Jeremiah Grossman publicly called for adoption of the technique. Four years later, Mozilla has committed to implementing the technology.

The new Firefox security feature could help block another form of attack, known as clickjacking, which allows an attacker to trick a user into clicking an unsafe button–for example, initiating a bank transfer when she believes that she is sending an e-mail. However, clickjacking is a problem so pervasive that an opt-in model really doesn’t work, says Hansen.

Source

July 2, 2009 Posted by | Future perfect, Future Technology | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Now Screen movies using your phone….!!

oled

A new mini projector prototype could see mobile phone users hosting impromptu movie screenings on makeshift screens such as white towels or walls… without killing the battery. Unlike conventional projectors the prototype doesn’t need an additional illumination system. Instead it relies on a lens system to project images produced by an OLED onto a wall or other flat surface.

Operating without an extra light source offers the dual benefits of reduced size and energy requirements. The prototype is 2.5 cm long, has a diameter of 1.8 cm and needs very little energy. This means the projector could be easily integrated into a mobile phone or PDA without overtaxing the devices’ battery.

Currently the prototype’s OLED display produces a monochrome image with a brightness of 10,000 candelas per square meter, and color images about half that level. By way of comparison, a computer monitor generates about 150-300 candelas per square meter.

The lenses used in the prototype are made of glass, but the development team is working on an optical system that uses plastic lenses. This is because plastic lenses can be embossed, so they can be produced in larger quantities more simply and cheaply than glass lenses.

The mini projector was developed by research scientists at the Fraunhofer Institute for Applied Optics and Precision Engineering IOF in Jena in cooperation with their partners in the EU project HYPOLED.

Source: Fraunhofer Institute

June 30, 2009 Posted by | Future perfect, Future Technology | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Pocket Cellphone Charger

lil 2

Product: Fuel-cell recharger

Cost: Initially between $100 and $200; cartridges will cost between $1 and $3.

Company: Lilliputian Systems

Solid-oxide fuel cells can generate electricity using a range of readily available fuels. But because they run very hot–often above 1,000 ºC–they typically require insulation that makes them bulky. A new version employs an insulation technique that keeps the finished device as small as a pack of playing cards. The gadget, which could help keep electronic devices humming on long flights or hikes, runs on cheap butane cartridges; one cartridge packs enough power to recharge a smart phone 20 times. Swap out the cartridge, and it’s ready for 20 more charges. The device is scheduled to go on sale next year.

lil 1

Source

June 29, 2009 Posted by | Future perfect, Future Technology | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Violet RFID Mirror…..adds life to the Objects…!!

What do you think is common between these pictures: The rabbit-dolls or perhaps something that looks like a fancy kitchen ware – a dish?

I am sure you are still wondering what is it that you are looking at? But it definitely looks interesting enough to find out, doesn’t it? It is interesting, impressive and great fun!

These are magical Violet Mirrors based on the RFID technology. RFID – stands for Radio-frequency identification. RFID can be applied to any object to use it as a tag, to be incorporated into any products to make them come alive. The RFID tag enables tracking the product through radio waves. In case you are wondering where this technology can be applied, then you should think of tracking and managing inventories at supermarkets, or any application of supply chain management in several enterprises.

If you understand the identification part of it, you would also immediately relate it to tracking, timing, scoring and implantation kind of usage. For example, an electronic toll collection booth would have an RFID tag put to its best use to improve efficiency in logging and tracking.

Other amusing uses that have been referred to is to use it as a learning package for youngsters, who can wave things in front of these RFID mirrors and understand the relation or usage of the same. For example, if you wave an umbrella in front of this magic mirror it would give you a weather forecast, or let you know when you took your last medication if you place your pills on it. It has to be connected to a computer to perform all these functions though.

The colorful RFID tags and stamps are slowly making place for their applications in our surroundings to make life more convenient, if it isn’t enough already. For now, inventory systems and identification are probably the best usage of this technology.

Main functions and features

Diameter 10 cm (4″). Height 1.4 cm (.55″)
Weight: 90g (3.2 oz)
USB 2.0 plug
ISO14443 Types A&B compliant RFID tag reader
Three dynamic color LEDs for feedback and information display
Speaker (buzzer)
Sleep mode sensor
Latest version of computer software downloaded from the website
Region free: works anywhere in the world, regardless of place of purchase
Requires permanent broadband Internet connection
Compatible with Mac OS X, Windows XP or Vista computer with USB port
Mirror can interact with other Violet objects such as Nabaztag:tag
Detects objects from a few centimeters
Detects up to four objects at the same time
Flipping Mir:ror puts it in sleep mode
When sitting idle on the desk Mir:ror displays light coded information for weather, stock quotes etc.
Works with Ztamps – the first consumer-oriented blank RFID tags that individuals can purchase and program to suit their own needs
Ztamps can be affixed to all kinds of everyday objects (mugs, keys, books, toys)
Ztamps can be re-used and reprogrammed by the user
Ztamps are not washable
Comes with: 1 Mir:ror (USB cable included), 3 blank user-programmable RFID Ztamps, 2 Nano:ztags programmable micro Rabbits, 1 Mirror:skin, 1 Quick start guide
  • Diameter 10 cm (4″). Height 1.4 cm (.55″)
  • Weight: 90g (3.2 oz)
  • USB 2.0 plug
  • ISO14443 Types A&B compliant RFID tag reader
  • Three dynamic color LEDs for feedback and information display
  • Speaker (buzzer)
  • Sleep mode sensor
  • Latest version of computer software downloaded from the website
  • Region free: works anywhere in the world, regardless of place of purchase
  • Requires permanent broadband Internet connection
  • Compatible with Mac OS X, Windows XP or Vista computer with USB port
  • Mirror can interact with other Violet objects such as Nabaztag:tag
  • Detects objects from a few centimeters
  • Detects up to four objects at the same time
  • Flipping Mir:ror puts it in sleep mode
  • When sitting idle on the desk Mir:ror displays light coded information for weather, stock quotes etc.
  • Works with Ztamps – the first consumer-oriented blank RFID tags that individuals can purchase and program to suit their own needs
  • Ztamps can be affixed to all kinds of everyday objects (mugs, keys, books, toys)
  • Ztamps can be re-used and reprogrammed by the user
  • Ztamps are not washable
  • Comes with: 1 Mir:ror (USB cable included), 3 blank user-programmable RFID Ztamps, 2 Nano:ztags programmable micro Rabbits, 1 Mirror:skin, 1 Quick start guide

Source

June 26, 2009 Posted by | Future perfect, Future Technology | , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Quantum-Dot Lighting – A New age of LED lamps

Quant D

Product: Array lamp with Quantum Light optic

Company: Nexxus Lighting, QD Vision

Light-emitting diodes (LEDs) are highly efficient, but they can’t directly produce white light. Though a blue LED can be coated with a phosphor that alters some wavelengths to yield a whitish mix, the resulting light has a bluish cast, and some energy is wasted as heat in the process. A new LED lamp avoids this problem by using an optic coated with quantum dots–bits of semiconductor material a few nanometers in diameter. When excited by a light source, the dots radiate light in wavelengths that vary according to their sizes. The optic–coated with dots in specific sizes and ratios–appears orange when the light is off (left) but radiates white light when the underlying blue LED is on (right). The result: LED lamps that are 50 percent more efficient and produce better-quality white light.

Quant D 1

Because the Nexxus Lighting Array lamps with Quantum Light™ are compatible with a standard, screw-in Edison base, they can easily replace incandescent and halogen lamps in existing downlight fixtures. Just in the US, the DoE estimates, the number of down lights and track heads with Edison base lamp installations equal over 139 million in commercial applications and over 262 million in residential lighting applications. Both companies expect that commercial availability of their high efficiency lamps with high color quality will overcome a major barrier to LEDs and will accelerate the penetration of LEDs in the $4 billion U.S. lamp market. The potential impact on the environment could be significant, a full conversion to LEDs of existing downlights and trackheads in the US (approximately 10% of US fixtures) represents an annual savings of more than 35 billion KW hours (nearly $4 billion), which is the equivalent of nearly 6 power plants or more than 60 million barrels of oil per year.

Sources: Nexxus Lighting, QD Vision

June 25, 2009 Posted by | Future perfect, Future Technology | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Lithium-sulfur batteries Thrice power storage than that of lithium-ion

Illustration

A research team from the University of Waterloo has synthesized a prototype of a lithium-sulphur rechargeable battery that, thanks to its peculiar nanoscale structure, can store three times the power of a conventional lithium-ion battery in the same volume while being significantly lighter and potentially cheaper to manufacture.

When it comes to reducing our carbon footprint, a clean, long-lasting rechargeable battery could have enormous benefits in a wide range of applications, from efficient energy storage to clean transportation.

Pros and Cons of lithium-sulfur cells

Pros

•Delivers much higher energy densities while reducing the cost of the materials used:

•The composite material synthesized by Nazar’s team can supply as much as 84 percent of the theoretical capacity of sulphur – three times the energy density of lithium transition cathodes. This should account for significantly more efficient batteries which will be lighter as well.

•The basic raw materials for the positive electrode (sulfur and carbon) are very inexpensive.

Cons

•In terms of safety, because lithium-sulfur batteries typically employ a negative electrode comprised of metallic lithium, there could be safety concerns if the electrode is not adequately protected by a passivating layer. However, the research team seems optimistic that this won’t be impossible to overcome.

•The costs associated with processing, electrolyte, fabrication, etc could be high, still that is highly dependent on the optimization of the materials and the battery configuration.

•Capacity fading can be more of an issue, along with lower volumetric energy and those need to be tackled more fully.

Via

June 24, 2009 Posted by | Future perfect, Future Technology | , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

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