April 24, 2015 |
The concentrated heat radiating from your laptop. The sudden roar of the cooling fan from inside your desktop computer. Familiar signs of wasted energy, caused largely by the increasing numbers of transistors crammed into the innards of our electronic gadgets. As you reach once again for that charging cable, be aware that an amiable pair of University of Pennsylvania physicists may have hit on the beginnings of a solution: a new kind of material called topological insulators.
April 18, 2015 |
I admit, I was quite horrified - like, shaken to my very core - by Unfriended , a horror pic with a new gimmick that likely will spawn an entire subgenre of more substandard rubbish. Unfriended unfolds entirely on a computer screen, the story and dialogue taking place among characters engaged in multiple acts of multiple-partner Skyping, Facebooking, and Googling. Possibly the single most uncinematic device ever used in a film, the gimmick must have made the studio suits jump with joy. Talk about low overhead!
April 3, 2015 |
It can happen to anyone, including the tech-savvy. You click on a seemingly harmless link, or don't even know what went wrong. Suddenly, you lose access to your own computer, and all your crucial files - or, even worse, files shared by a business. How much would you pay to regain control? Market testing by the bad guys - yes, the tools of capitalism thrive in the Net's back alleys, just as in Silicon Valley - seems to suggest that consumers will pay from $500 to $700 for an outright ransom demand, and that businesses might fork over thousands.
March 22, 2015 |
Harry and Susan Armstrong flip houses. To date, the Pitman couple have flipped 15 - eight in recent years, after their children were grown. All but one of those flips has been in Pitman. "You do what you know," said Harry, publisher of the Golden Times, which he describes as a regional newspaper for seniors. But this is not about house-flipping, which Harry said he and Susan do as padding for retirement. "We're not professionals," he emphasizes. That isn't to say I'm not going to squeeze in a few of his observations about flipping at some point, since I'm again getting inquiries from wannabes.
January 27, 2015 |
When George Zhu attended Mercersburg Academy, a boarding school in central Pennsylvania, he was always told to finish his plate at dinner. The law required cafeteria workers to dump whatever prepared food was not consumed or never served. That wastefulness bothered Zhu, now a sophomore at Swarthmore College. So he spent an almost sleepless weekend in a building at Haverford College with his team of three friends - surrounded by pizza boxes and dozens of other ambitious students - searching for a solution through technology.
December 30, 2014 |
Since New Jersey expanded Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act, its efforts to enroll thousands of low-income residents have been hampered by low staffing and antiquated technology. Gov. Christie championed the expansion, and, indeed, 300,000 New Jersey adults have enrolled in Medicaid, the federal program for the poor and disabled, since President Obama's health-care law took effect in October 2013. Many gained coverage directly through online state and federal portals. Yet an estimated 11,000 others, whom experts describe as some of the state's most vulnerable citizens, have received no response to their applications.
December 29, 2014 |
"We want a cool office," said Gabriel Weinberg , founder of six-year-old DuckDuckGo , the Google-challenging search site that promises "Real Privacy - Smarter Search - Less Clutter. " The Massachusetts Institute of Technology grad's style sense prompted DuckDuckGo, which keeps 25 software developers and designers busy powering 200 million monthly user searches, to build its headquarters on the top two floors of a stone-fronted, turret-topped, asymmetrical office building on Paoli Pike two blocks from the Paoli Amtrak station and a short drive from Weinberg's home on Valley Forge Mountain.
December 22, 2014 |
'He was an amazing human being who is finally, rightfully, getting recognition for the great advances he made," Benedict Cumberbatch says about Alan Turing, the British mathematician, logician, cryptanalyst, and computer pioneer who led the team of code-breakers responsible for cracking Nazi Germany's daunting Enigma machine. Cumberbatch, of course, is playing no small part in seeing to it that Turing gets his due: In The Imitation Game , opening Christmas Day at area theaters, the actor is Turing - a deeply complicated figure whose breakthroughs at Bletchley Park, the top-secret intelligence enclave set up in 1939 in Buckinghamshire, are credited with bringing World War II to a speedier end, thus saving hundreds of thousands of lives.
October 1, 2014
SOMETHING WAS wrong with my computer, the caller told me. He said his systems had detected a virus. (My computer had been rather slow lately.) He said he was a computer technician with Microsoft. "How did you get my number?" I asked. "You registered on the site," he said. It was possible. Before he could help me, the man said he needed remote access to my computer. He immediately began to give me instructions on how to allow him to take over my machine. At that point, my skepticism kicked in. "You know, this sounds awfully like a scam," I said.
September 22, 2014 |
Flower-arranging class at Barclay Friends, a West Chester nursing home with expansive gardens, was winding down when horticulturist Cheryl Bjornson pulled out her newest tool: a computer system called Linked Senior. It's loaded with activities meant to appeal to audiences like Bjornson's - 13 quiet, aged ladies with small vases of zinnias before them and one sleeping man. To liven things up, Bjornson displayed a garden trivia game on a giant screen. A woman who used to work at Waterloo Gardens correctly chose the number of flower species (between 250,000 and 500,000)