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Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen dead at 65: a look back at his extraordinary life admin Tue, 2018-10-16 - 07:37

Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen dead at 65: a look back at his extraordinary life

Paul Allen, who co-founded Microsoft with fellow billionaire Bill Gates and used the fortune he made from the iconic technology company to invest in professional sports teams, cable TV and real estate, has died. He was 65.

Allen died on Monday in Seattle from complications of non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, according to a statement from Vulcan, his investment firm. Allen’s source for his varied investments and sizeable charitable donations was his once-major stake in Redmond, Washington-based Microsoft. He had a net worth of US$26.1-billion, according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index.

Allen, along with Gates, helped create an entire industry selling software for a new breed of smaller, more affordable and widely accessible computers.

He was very much the Steve Wozniak of the two Microsoft founders...

See https://techcentral.co.za/microsoft-co-founder-paul-allen-dead-at-65-a-look-back-at-his-extraordinary-life/84441/


Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen dead at 65: a look back at his extraordinary life - TechCentral
Casio adds modern tech to the classic G-Shock watch admin Mon, 2018-10-15 - 23:32

Casio adds modern tech to the classic G-Shock watch

Casio released the first G-Shock watch in 1983. The original set the bar for tough watches with incredible shock resistance to protect the quartz module. It’s a classic and still available for purchase in several forms in 2018.

Recently, Casio released an all-metal version of the watch that features the iconic design but with modern technology like Bluetooth connectivity. This isn’t a smartwatch, but simply a watch that’s a bit smarter than most.

The Bluetooth function is simple and worth a look. It gives owners an easy way to access settings. Instead of navigating through the menus on the watch, owners can use a smartphone app to sync the watch to the phone’s time, adjust settings and set alarms and reminders. It takes just one button press on the watch and for the owner to launch the app. The watch does not have to be connected through the phone’s Bluetooth menu; the app takes care of it all.

See https://techcrunch.com/2018/10/15/casio-adds-modern-tech-to-the-classic-g-shock-watch/

#casio


Casio adds modern tech to the classic G-Shock watch – TechCrunch
New Retevis RHD-771 Whip Antenna and Programming Cable arrived today for my Yaesu FT-60R radio admin Mon, 2018-10-15 - 22:17

New Retevis RHD-771 Whip Antenna and Programming Cable arrived today for my Yaesu FT-60R radio

The antenna was just a quick screw on and immediately I could hear the difference. Some stations that were just about inaudible now came through fine. One nearby security station that came in on about 1/3 strength now came through clearly on 2/3 strength 3/10. It may not be the best antenna around but it is a pretty good bang for the buck and well worth having obtained.

The programming cable is in use with the CHIRP software. It basically lets me easily edit and update the frequencies in memory, the memory banks, as well as various of the radio's settings all from the desktop computer. One thing that stumped me for a bit was the comms between the computer and the radio as "permission was refused". It was just the old issue I had before on Linux where you must grant user permissions to allow access to the USB port - once done it all worked like a charm and I've updated all my surrounding repeater frequencies, offsets, and required tones.

#hamradio #yaesu #amateurradio


Future of electric mobility is on two wheels - not only because of falling costs but also to beat the...

Posted on: Sun, 2018-10-14 - 18:09 By: admin

Future of electric mobility is on two wheels - not only because of falling costs but also to beat the worsening traffic

Until recently, electric motorcycles and scooters received far less global attention than electric cars. That’s beginning to change, especially in India, where two-wheelers — predominantly motorcycles — account for 76% of vehicles on the roads and a whopping 30% of the country’s pollution. In Southeast Asia’s biggest economies, the number of households that own two-wheelers exceeds 80%. Cleaning up the region’s air means reducing emissions from two-wheelers.

Electric cars, even cheap ones, won’t solve the problem. Cost is the first and tallest barrier. In India, a new, entry-level commuter motorcycle can cost less than $500 (and, on the secondhand market, far less). Traffic is the next burden. In the mega-cities of emerging Asia, jams are notoriously bad and getting worse. In Mumbai, the average speed of city buses has declined from 16km/h to 9km/h over the last decade. Little wonder that even commuters who can afford a car often look to bikes and scooters to get around.

The good news is that Asia’s emerging middle class seems open to the idea of e-scooters if the price is right and charging is convenient. In China, low-speed electric bicycles powered by bulky lead-acid batteries have replaced many traditional motorcycles and scooters, especially given more stringent emissions rules. They’re cheap, and — unlike electric cars — the batteries can be charged at home or at the office. Today there are 200 million them, with 30 million more added every year.

Traditionally, the costs of lithium-ion batteries have made vehicles powered by them too expensive for emerging markets. But prices are falling precipitously: Bloomberg New Energy Finance predicts they’ll decline 73% by 2030. While that may still not be enough to make electric cars broadly affordable, it’s a good bet that two-wheelers will be.

See https://techcentral.co.za/future-of-electric-mobility-is-on-two-wheels/84394/

#elctricscooter


Future of electric mobility is on two wheels - TechCentral

MADtv Razor Spishak (video) - Fast forward to 2023 and we have the Gillette Mach, a razor with 20 blades...

Posted on: Sun, 2018-10-14 - 17:52 By: admin

MADtv Razor Spishak (video) - Fast forward to 2023 and we have the Gillette Mach, a razor with 20 blades for the closest shave ever!

No, it's not true (but it may be if Gillette keeps adding blades). What we do know though is the marketing and advertising will be top notch. What I know personally today though, is a good old double-edged razor blade (single blade shave) gives a way better shave with less irritation than any double, triple, quadruple, etc cartridge razor!

Watch this hilarious video at https://youtu.be/UjAZnGeBcgg

#gillette #shaving #wetshaving


EMO worker tries to drum up enthusiasm for ham radio

Posted on: Sun, 2018-10-14 - 17:34 By: admin

EMO worker tries to drum up enthusiasm for ham radio

A ham radio probably isn't the first form of communication a person thinks about in an emergency, but sometimes, it's the only one that works. Ham radios can use wireless transmission to send messages to battery-operated radios. And they can be useful when large storms knock out telecommunications, says Mike Johnson, the Cumberland Regional Emergency Management co-ordinator. Storms that knock out telecommunications for long periods of time create more problems for co-ordinated emergency response, he said.

He is partnering up with EOS Eco-Energy and the WestCumb Amateur Radio Club to hold a free workshop in Sackville to try get more people interested in ham radios.

Not only do ham radios continue to work when the telecommunications infrastructure is out, but many operators also have portable and mobile models that will allow them to stay in communications with a network of other hams while on the move. This means being able to communicate to the entire group for coordinating actions. The more digital convenience we experience with the Internet and mobile phones, the more vulnerable we become if these services go down.

See https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/new-brunswick/ham-radio-workshop-sackville-1.4859729

#hamradio #amateurradio


EMO worker tries to drum up enthusiasm for ham radio | CBC News
A ham radio probably isn't the first form of communication a person thinks about in an emergency, but sometimes, it's the only one that works.
Renault’s ‘Advanced Battery Storage’ Program Explores The Potential Of Second-Life EV Batteries admin Sat, 2018-10-13 - 16:15

Renault’s ‘Advanced Battery Storage’ Program Explores The Potential Of Second-Life EV Batteries

The Renault Group is launching its new Advanced Battery Storage program that will work to build Europe’s largest stationary energy storage system using a combination of used and new electric vehicle (EV) batteries by 2020.

Which should mean better trade-in value when replacing your EV's battery after 10+ years of use.

See https://cleantechnica.com/2018/10/13/renaults-advanced-battery-storage-program-explores-the-potential-of-second-life-ev-batteries/

#EV #batteries


Renault's 'Advanced Battery Storage' Program Explores The Potential Of Second-Life EV Batteries | CleanTechnica
The Renault Group is launching its new Advanced Battery Storage program that will work to build Europe's largest stationary energy storage system using a combination of used and new electric vehicle (EV) batteries by
Elon Musk Beginning His Journey: “I Arrived In North America At 17 With $2,000” admin Sat, 2018-10-13 - 15:56

Elon Musk Beginning His Journey: “I Arrived In North America At 17 With $2,000”

I always find this such an inspiring story. Both Elon and Mark Shuttleworth started out in South Africa and both made their money through software (without threatening, doing devious deals, etc) and Mark branched out further into software (Ubuntu Linux) whilst Elon went into hardware (vehicles and sustainable energy).

Mark reached out to space... and Elon is reaching out far beyond that (Mars). Clearly, both people of vision and the grit to make it happen.

See trhe start of Elon's story at https://cleantechnica.com/2018/10/13/elon-musk-beginning-his-journey-i-arrived-in-north-america-at-17-with-2000/

#southafrica #elonmusk #markshuttleworth


Elon Musk Beginning His Journey: "I Arrived In North America At 17 With $2,000" | CleanTechnica
How did Elon Musk grow into the business maverick he is today? It didn't come easy. CNBC reports that even though the 47-year-old "tech titan Elon Musk is currently worth more than $20 billion ... the Tesla and SpaceX boss hasn't always been so wealthy." Really

Some Google Plus users begin migrating to the MeWe social media platform

Posted on: Fri, 2018-10-12 - 21:48 By: admin

Some Google Plus users begin migrating to the MeWe social media platform

I've only been using MeWe for about two days now but am quite liking it from a functionality point of view as well as its very user-friendly interface and pretty good Android/iOS apps.

What I am liking is its Groups that have a lot of configurability, and with the right settings your Groups there can mimic Google+ Collections. It's got good controls over notifications, and it also has masses of open Groups on lots of diverse topics. One difference with MeWe's Groups is that a post to the group does NOT appear in your Profile stream like on G+ with Collections. This can be positive or negative depending on how you look at it - your Profile feed can be followed for purely non-Group posts, but in this way, there is no "single feed" to follow all your posts (think pushing your feed out to another service like say Twitter). Of course for those posting everything on their Profile feed only this makes no difference.

So although I will be posting there now (my profile is at https://mewe.com/i/danie.van_der_merwe) I'll still do my main posting from Google+ for a while. The main reason being MeWe's posts are not yet open public posts (you have to register for free to see posts). But some changes and improvements are coming to MeWe that will open this up and also bring other improvements that G+ users have been asking for - watch the video with MeWe's Product Manager at https://youtu.be/Jzf_mcgjo_0. This is encouraging as MeWe is keen to make improvements so I'm not judging it by what I only see today.

On the downside it is a pity it is not federated (but I get that many users actually want a single site where all their contacts and groups are), or open source, as this would provide assurance against it just being shut down in future. That said a saving grace is Sir Tim Berners-Lee, who is on their advisory board, and who is busy with a big drive to get social media platforms more open. To be honest the majority of social media users probably find the federated approach confusing, especially when they want to just find their friends. So I'm guessing that many G+ users will still find their way to MeWe!

Other alternatives that G+ users are moving to (or that there is a bit of mention about) are:
- Pluspora
- Mastodon (more Twitter-like)
- Minds.com

MeWe still offers the richest functionality in a good looking and modern looking UI.

If you are a MeWe user let me know in the comments to this post what you think of it. Did you compare other alternatives, if so, why did you choose (or not choose) them?

See https://techaeris.com/2018/10/11/google-plus-users-migrating-me-we-social-media/

#not4sale #mewe #googleplus #deletefacebook


Some Google Plus users begin migrating to the MeWe social media platform
Many Google Plus users are migrating their social usage to the MeWe social media platform.
Using AI To Pull Call Signs From SDR-Processed Amateur Radio Signals admin Fri, 2018-10-12 - 20:34

Using AI To Pull Call Signs From SDR-Processed Amateur Radio Signals

AI is currently popular, so Chirs Lam figured he’d stimulate some interest in amateur radio by using it to pull call signs from radio signals processed using SDR. As you’ll see, the AI did just okay so Chris augmented it with an algorithm invented for gene sequencing.

His experiment was simple enough. He picked up a Baofeng handheld radio transceiver to transmit messages containing a call sign and some speech. He then used a 0.5 meter antenna to receive it and a little connecting hardware and a NooElec SDR dongle to get it into his laptop. There he used SDRSharp to process the messages and output a WAV file. He then passed that on to the AI, Google’s Cloud Speech-to-Text service, to convert it to text.

Rather than train his own AI, Chris’s clever solution was to turn to the Smith-Waterman algorithm. This is the same algorithm used for finding similar nucleic acid sequences when analyzing genes. It allowed him to use a list of correct call signs to find the best match for what the AI did come up with.

See https://hackaday.com/2018/10/09/using-ai-to-pull-call-signs-from-sdr-processed-signals/

#hamaradio #amateurradio #SDR #AI


Using AI To Pull Call Signs From SDR-Processed Signals
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