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Happy Birthday Nikola Tesla!

Nikola Tesla, one of the most famous scientists and inventors of all time, was born 153 years ago today. His work helped pave the road for many modern uses of electricity and among other things, he is credited as the original inventor of radio. However, perhaps the most famous product he created was the Tesla coil, a type of resonant transformer that is still one of the most popular and visually stimulating electrical inventions ever made. For more information about Nikola Tesla, feel free to check out his wikipedia page, as well as a museum you can visit if you’re ever in the Belgrade, Serbia region. Here are a couple of cool youtube videos of tesla coils.

Standard Tesla Coil

Tesla Coils playing the Mario theme song

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NY Times using Photoshop? (by Zak)

http://minnesota.publicradio.org/collections/special/columns/news_cut/archive/2009/07/fakery_in_the_times.shtml

This story shows how Photoshop or some other type of image editing software was used to make a room appear bigger in a story about unfinished construction projects. While this type of use of Photoshop is not encouraged by STS, we do have three Photoshop classes that show you how to alter photos just like that NY Times journalist!

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Top 10 Ways to Provoke a Geek Argument

 

geek

FROM WIRED.COM GEEKDAD BLOG

Geeks, as a general rule, are pretty easy-going. We like to think things through, so passionate confrontations aren’t commonplace for us. When we get well and properly provoked, though, watch out! We won’t stop talking until every last point that we can think of has been made at least twice. So, what do you say to provoke a geek? Glad you asked!

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Post to Twitter from Flickr (the official way)

twitter

FROM CNET WEBWARE NEWS

After watching other photo hosts create simple tools for Twitter users to post pictures, Flickr has finally wised up and pushed out its own solution. By divining the popular photo service with access to your Twitter stream, you can now post individual shots there right from Flickr, complete with a fancy Flic.kr shortened URL.

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Unlock your inner nerd with the iDoormat!

floormat

Normally we don’t blog about silly products, but I thought this one was too good.

Now available at Meninos.com is the iPhone inspired “Unlock Doormat.” While the price is hefty (at $50), the mat is lighthearted and tech spirited.

I am thinking this would look good outside of the STS office; it’s simply a must-have.

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IBM’s Watson computer to compete on Jeopardy

IBM has released its plans to have their new super computer dubbed “Watson” to compete on Jeopardy with human contestants. Watson is two years in the making and IBM computer scientists have been working on voice recognition, advanced artificial intelligence, and parallel processing software that is as innovative as it gets. It is also necessary for Watson to interpret the underlying clues hidden within the Jeopardy questions so in order for Watson to compete, it must think like a human. A date for the Jeopardy showdown has not been set but plans for the show are taking place.

the super computer by IBM, Watson is to compete on Jeopardy!

the super computer by IBM, Watson is to compete on Jeopardy!

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Mind your glands: Army considers airport sweat scanners

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FROM YAHOO TECH NEWS

How do you pick out a terrorist from the millions of people who board planes each year? You can search through their bags, pat them down, go over their passports and check their IDs, but terrorists, one must assume, are crafty types. Assuming whatever contraband they require has made its way to the plane, all you really have left to ID the perp is what he’s got inside his head.

In lieu of brainwave scanners being installed at LAX, the U.S. Army is looking to alternative ways to determine who’s got crime on their mind. To wit, the military is looking for proposals for large-scale biometric sensors that would scan travelers and examine their “expressions, gait, and pose” and look for “abnormal perspiration and changes in body temperature” in order to track down evildoers.

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