Category Archives: Uncategorized

Why US tech lobbyists have descended on Brussels

Stop Making Sense

Nancy Marshall-Genzer reports for Market Place:

‘Brussels is home to the European Parliament, but it’s also hosting lots of lobbyists for the U.S. tech industry. Walk down the street near Parliament and you’ll see office blocks that are home to lobbyists representing the likes of Facebook, Google, and other tech companies.

They’ve set up shop because many U.S. tech companies oppose strict new online privacy legislation that members of the European parliament are considering. “It’s gotten a bit out of hand. Very, very emotional,” says Jean-Marc Leclerc, director of the digital economy policy group for a trade association called Digital Europe. Among its members: Apple and Microsoft. Leclerc says there were “thousands of amendments, night votes. It really went crazy.”

Why was it so crazy? The EU is considering an online privacy bill that would give consumers the right to have personal data erased. There would also be new limits on online profiling. The tech…

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5 New Technologies You are Going to Watch @ FIFA World Cup !!!

Take off with Natarajan

Technology is heavily used in many major and international sports events, for instance 6.6 pounds makes all the difference between a gold and a silver medal in the 100-meter butterfly event back in the 2008 Beijing Olympics. Badly designed uniforms can take out a whole team, like what happened to team USA in the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics recently. In badminton, line-call technology is now used to assist line judges for when players challenge their ball is “in or out” calls.

Vanishing Spray

The FIFA World Cup is also no stranger to technological innovation. The 1970 World Cup, for instance, was the first one to be broadcast in colour. For the first time, footballs fans get to watch matches live on TV from their living rooms and see their favorite teams’ uniforms in all its glorious colors. This upcoming 2014 will be no different when it comes to debuting new…

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Russia tells US astronauts to use trampoline if they want to go into space

Photo: Peter Werkman
Photo: Peter Werkman

In a case of ‘did he really say that???’ the Russia – Ukraine conflict has gone into space…or has started to involve exactly who gets into space and how.

The Russian Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin recently lashed out against the US over its stance on Ukraine and the sanctions imposed on Russia because of the on-going conflict.

“The U.S. introduced sanctions against our space industry. God knows, we warned them: we respond to declarations w/ declarations, to actions w/ actions,” Rogozin tweeted, before adding:

“After analyzing the sanctions against our space industry, I suggest the U.S. delivers its astronauts to the ISS [international space station] with a trampoline.”

While more serious media have discussed whether or not this is an actual threat or not (Russian space shuttles are the only way of reaching the ISS at the moment, but any sort of swordplay would likely send the US into the arms of SpaceX and Orbital Sciences, meaning no more money for the already cash strapped Russian aerospace industry) I have only one thing on my mind right now:

I would truly love to see a trampoline capable of sending a man into outer space (of course, the impact and speeds reached would push an astro-jumper’s leg bones up past his ears before he or she reached the stratosphere…but I still want to see the trampoline!).

Andrew McKillop: Death Cross Mix for European Energy : No Future

Tallbloke's Talkshop

Guest post from Andrew McKillop

Death Cross Mix for European Energy : No Future
by Andrew McKillop 29-03-2014

EU-sinkingPlay With the Toy Until it Breaks
Commentators have begun to focus on the “moving average” of always-unrealistic energy policy and programs in the European Union, easily finding that they signal a “bearish outlook” for future energy supply in Europe – but certainly not for energy prices.  In fact not only the poster child victim of the EU’s mix and mingle of often-extreme policies – electricity, but also increasingly gas and then oil – faces a supply outlook that almost inevitably has to be down. This is despite, or because of, ever-rising energy prices, led by electricity price rises! Prices are driven up by a death cross convergence of political, economic, financial, technical and even cultural “life style” factors. In the poster child country for European “energy transition”, German household electricity prices…

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XKCD weighs all your pets and cows – ALL of them

Internet phenomenon XKCD (if you don’t know it, its really an on-line comic thing – except it’s so much more than that) recently sat down with what must have been the mother of all TI 81’s and figured out the combines weight of all humans, pets, cattle – and a whole lot more. The result is this pretty mind boggling map (mind not boggled? Find the elephants).