(Update – this isn’t ‘The Icarus Connection’, it’s the special limited edition of “what you going to do with that duck” – 6 years worth of Seth’s posts…)
Well, my kickstarter book has arrived, and it is a monster! It’s eleven pounds of condensed wisdom from Seth Godin, full of advice and agitation to just get start doing things…. or at least I think it is, time will tell…
And so I did, with this post.
This is it next to an iPhone for scale (I could have used a banana – imgur.com joke there – but they’re a bit mushy)
It could be a dieter’s best friend or worst nightmare: technology that knows how much a person has just eaten, knows how many calories he has burned off, offers suggestions for improving resolve and success, and never lets him cheat. And it’s all done by a small, stick-on monitor no bigger than a large Band-Aid.The calorie monitor, which is being developed by biotech incubator PhiloMetron, uses a combination of sensors, electrodes, and accelerometers that–together with a unique algorithm–measure the number of calories eaten, the number of calories burned, and the net gain or loss over a 24-hour period. The patch sends this data via a Bluetooth wireless connection to a dieter’s cell phone, where an application tracks the totals and provides support. “You missed your goal for today, but you can make it up tomorrow by taking a 15-minute walk or having a salad for dinner,” it might suggest. [From Technology Review: When Your Diet Needs a Band-Aid]
At the moment, it’s just calorie counting, but imagine a similar unit that is tracking heart-rate or temperature or any one of a hundred other variables, all being uploaded to some analysis site, perhaps using an accessory on your iPhone?
The next ten years are going to be extremely interesting.
I saw a programme last night with James May talking about ‘alternative’ (his quotes) energy, and there was the usual ones of solar, wave power (I remember the Salter Duck from a while back, but didn’t realise it was government incompetence that killed it off – basically they said it would be 10 times more expensive than nuclear, and that did it in), kite power from the Netherlands and some guys in the States cracking CO2 to create petrol using concentrated sunshine.
So far, so so-so.
Then there was the bit about Nuclear Fusion – the sun uses it, it’s clean, it only creates helium, enough fuel to power the planet essentially forever, and all you need is … 100 million degrees to fuse the atoms of hydrogen together. Cue; CERN, ITER, JET, big computers, sirens, and tokamaks (toroids – doughnuts). Then – some very nice footage of James looking at a screen that’s showing some actual fusion going off in a the toroid – sexaay!
Former TUAW blogger Erica Sadun has a cautionary post for developers regarding the pending push notifications coming to iPhone OS 3.0: better get yourself some reliable servers. The implication, delivered via headline, is that smaller developers won’t be able to afford push notification. Indeed, as Erica says, coding for an app that can run in the background is one thing — you may need to scale things down a bit for resource management — but deploying a reliable push notification system is a tall order by comparison.
Instead of coding once and deploying, developers will now have to manage servers to handle the load of users who will be receiving push notifications.
There’s more (of course).
If you’re going to need industrial-scale servers to run your push-enabled app. then this will have an upward pressure on the application price, and is an opportunity for people using lightweight frameworks such as Twisted to come to the fore.