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The Infinite Library

April 21, 2005

Google is converting the full text of millions of library books into searchable Web pages. How will libraries function in 2020 or 2050, once Google or its successors have finished digitizing the world’s printed knowledge?

The Intelligent Universe author James Gardner to appear on Coast To Coast AM show

February 20, 2007

James Gardner, author of the recently published book, The Intelligent Universe, will appear on the national Coast To Coast AM radio show on Tuesday night Feb. 20 to discuss the meaning of the intelligent universe, the process of cosmic evolution, and the impact of the discovery of ETs on religion.

The Internet gets physical

December 19, 2011

The Internet of Things or the Industrial Internet is here. Across many industries, products and practices are being transformed by communicating sensors and computing intelligence.

Examples: Nest Labs (a digital thermostat), General Electric (smart hospital room), IBM (2,000 projects worldwide that fit in the Smarter Planet category).

“We’re going to put the digital ‘smarts’ into everything,” said Edward D. Lazowska, a computer scientist at the University of Washington.… read more

The Internet IS a Series of Tubes: Real-Time Mapping of the London Underground

June 22, 2010

London Train Map

The live train map for the London Underground is a nearly real-time Google Maps mashup that shows data on every train in the London Underground as they move about their subterranean travels.

The Internet Just Ran Out of Numbers

February 7, 2011

On February 3, it finally happened: the stash of IPv4 Internet protocol addresses that are used to identify and locate computers connected to the Internet was exhausted.

Fortunately, engineers realized the limitations of IPv4 a long time ago and lined up a successor, called IPv6, in 1998. IPv6 uses 128 bits rather than 32, producing a pool of numbers that is staggeringly huge — some 3.4 x 10 to… read more

The Internet Knows What You’ll Do Next

July 4, 2006

Google Trends allows you to check the relative popularity of any search term, to look at how it has changed over the last couple years and to see the cities where the term is most popular.

When this and other new tools get good enough, you can see how the business of marketing may start to change. As soon as a company begins an advertising campaign, it will be… read more

The Internet Meets the Neural Net

July 26, 2004

New technlogies for interfacing brain and computer include low-cost EEG, optical signals, and direct neural interfacing.

The ‘Internet of cars’ is approaching a crossroads

June 27, 2013


Wireless vehicle networks could make driving safer, more efficient, and less polluting, but the cost of deployment will be significant, MIT Technology Review reports.

This week, officials from the U.S. Department of Transportation in Washington, DC, will see the technology in action, in a demonstration organized by experts from the University of Michigan’s Transportation Research Institute and various communications equipment and car manufacturers.… read more

The Internet of Things will thrive by 2025 but raise privacy, complexity concerns, experts say

May 15, 2014

(Credit: IBM)

The Internet of Things will make substantial inroads into many aspects of everyday life in the next decade, according to predictions by more than 1,600 experts cited in a report (summarized here) about the future of the Internet by the Pew Research Center Internet Project and Elon University’s Imagining the Internet Center.

According to futurist Paul Saffo, managing director of… read more

The Internet takes to the air

January 15, 2003

On Jan. 15, Lufthansa will give travelers access to the net and let them send and receive e-mails in real time. Boeing has signed up 15 airlines to the in-flight service, which uses satellite links.

The Internet’s New Shortcut

August 21, 2008

University of Washington and Yale University researchers have developed a faster way to send data across the Internet, accelerating peer-to-peer traffic.

Their algorithm, which they call P4P or “local file-sharing,” finds the shortest path across the Internet by tracking users’ locations and ISP network maps without revealing details to either side. In tests, users could download files about 20% faster than conventional file-sharing, while cutting the bandwidth requirements by… read more

The Internet’s perilous New year’s resolution

December 27, 2011

Internet legislation that is scheduled for a vote in the U.S. Senate next month would aim to stop the unlicensed downloading of billions of dollars’ worth of movies and music — as well as the trade in counterfeit drugs and other goods — by blocking access to certain websites, many of them registered abroad. But its basic strategies could lead to trouble on several fronts.

If the U.S. government… read more

The intersection of information and energy technologies

April 30, 2012


Idealab‘s Bill Gross thinks computational power will solve the world’s energy problems in this century.

Everything is getting more expensive because billions of people are trying creatively to repackage and consume limited, expensive materials, he says. But there is one resource whose price has consistently has gone down: computation — atoms are going up in price while bits are going down.

“The power, cost,… read more

The interspecies internet

Could the Internet connect us with dolphins, apes, elephants and other highly intelligent species?
March 2, 2013

(Credit: Peter Gabriel)

At TED 2013 Thursday, Diana Reiss, Peter Gabriel, Neil Gershenfeld, and Vint Cerf launched the idea of the “interspecies internet.”

Diana Reiss, a cognitive psychologist, has been been teaching dolphins to communicate through an underwater keyboard of symbols that correspond to whistles and playful activities.

Through this keyboard, the dolphins learned to perform activities on demand, and also to express their desire for them. (Also see… read more

The Intimate Machine

October 24, 2002

In the first show of the new Scientific American Frontiers series on PBS TV, “The Intimate Machine,” Alan Alda visits the MIT Media Lab, where researchers are working to make machines smarter, more empathetic and easier to work with.

The series, which premiered Oct. 22, airs on Sundays at 9 PM ET/PT. It can also be viewed online.

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