RSSComputers / Programming / Mobiles (74)

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Wed 15 Oct 2008

A safety device which prevents drivers using mobile phones by automatically intercepting calls and text messages when they are moving has been unveiled.

The software tells callers the person they are trying to reach is driving and asks them to leave a message.

   Software blocks car phone users _45107516_driver-on-phone-226b.jpg
 start_quote_rb.gif Our advice to drivers is to switch off their mobile phones... and let voicemail do its job end_quote_rb.gif
The Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents

Canadian firm Aegis Mobility hopes its system will become available via a monthly subscription fee.

The Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents (RoSPA) says drivers are four times as likely to crash using a phone.

Phone fine

The DriveAssist system can also tell callers where the person they are trying to reach is located by using satellite navigation technology.

Motorists using mobile phones caused 25 fatal, 64 serious and 259 slight accidents in 2007, according to the Department for Transport.

It has been illegal to use a mobile phone while driving since December 2003 - with offenders facing a £60 on-the-spot fine and three points on their licence.

A RoSPA spokesperson told BBC News: "Our advice to drivers is to switch off their mobile phones when they get behind the wheel and let voicemail do its job."

Meanwhile, a survey by motoring group RAC shows almost half of drivers are seriously distracted by in-car technology - rising to 55% for 17-to-24-year-olds.

The most distracting gadgets were radios and CDs, followed by mobile phones and satnav systems which each put off around a third of drivers.

Heating and air conditioning controls distracted 35% in the survey of 1,034 motorists.

Anti-locking brake systems (ABS) and immobilisers are fitted as standard on new cars, yet only 70% of drivers knew they had ABS and only 68% knew they had immobilisers.

The Department for Transport says distractions account for 12% of all road accidents. In 2007 that amounted to 75 fatal, 411 serious and 2,517 slight accidents.

The RAC survey also looked to the next 20 years of motoring and revealed:

 • 23% believe drivers will be able to simply input an end destination then sit back and enjoy the ride.

 • 35% think cars will be able to "talk" to each other to pinpoint and avoid traffic.

 • 71% believe cars will be able to tell you when you are exceeding the speed limit with half predicting automatic prevention.

 • 60% predict fingerprint, voice or breath recognition will replace keys to start a car.

 RAC's technical director David Bizley said: "In-car technology has come a long way since the late 80s. The advances have fallen into two camps - active and passive.

"Active technologies such as in-car entertainment are not always positive as they can cause driver distraction, while passive technologies, such as anti-locking brake systems (ABS), are undervalued as they are not fully understood or deemed less important as they come on automatically."


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Sat 13 Sep 2008

A quick overview!...

NET framework 2.0:

It brings a lot of evolution in class of the framework and refactor control including the support of

Anonymous methods
Partial class
Nullable type
The new API gives a fine grain control on the behavior of the runtime with regards to multithreading, memory allocation, assembly loading and more
Full 64-bit support for both the x64 and the IA64 hardware platforms
New personalization features for ASP.NET, such as support for themes, skins and webparts.
.NET Micro Framework

.NET framework 3.0:

Also called WinFX,includes a new set of managed code APIs that are an integral part of Windows Vista and Windows Server 2008 operating systems and provides

Windows Communication Foundation (WCF), formerly called Indigo; a service-oriented messaging system which allows programs to interoperate locally or remotely similar to web services.
Windows Presentation Foundation (WPF), formerly called Avalon; a new user interface subsystem and API based on XML and vector graphics, which uses 3D computer graphics hardware and Direct3D technologies.
Windows Workflow Foundation (WF) allows for building of task automation and integrated transactions using workflows.
Windows CardSpace, formerly called InfoCard; a software component which securely stores a person's digital identities and provides a unified interface for choosing the identity for a particular transaction, such as logging in to a website

.NET framework 3.5:

It implement Linq evolution in language. So we have the folowing evolution in class:

Linq for SQL, XML, Dataset, Object
Addin system
p2p base class
Active directory
Anonymous types with static type inference
Paging support for ADO.NET
ADO.NET synchronization API to synchronize local caches and server side datastores
Asynchronous network I/O API
Support for HTTP pipelining and syndication feeds.
New System.CodeDom namespace.


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Wed 3 Sep 2008

Google launches internet browser

Google's new web browser is called Chrome
 It's certainly the biggest news in the browser space since Firefox started to dent Internet Explorer's lead and many people see this as a re-ignition of the browser wars 
Darren Waters

Google is launching an open source web browser to compete with Internet Explorer and Firefox.

The browser is designed to be lightweight and fast, and to cope with the next generation of web applications that rely on graphics and multimedia.

Called Chrome, it will launch as a beta for Windows machines in 100 countries, with Mac and Linux versions to come.

"We realised... we needed to completely rethink the browser," said Google's Sundar Pichai in a blog post.

The new browser will help Google take advantage of developments it is pushing online in rich web applications that are challenging traditional desktop programs.

Google has a suite of web apps, such as Documents, Picasa and Maps which offer functionality that is beginning to replace offline software.

"What we really needed was not just a browser, but also a modern platform for web pages and applications, and that's what we set out to build," Mr Pichai, VP Product Management, wrote.


The launch of a beta version of Chrome on Tuesday evening (UK time) will be Google's latest assault on Microsoft's dominance of the PC business. The firm's Internet Explorer program dominates the browser landscape, with 80% of the market.

Those already in the browser space were quick to respond to the news.

Writing in his blog, John Lilly, chief executive of Mozilla was sanguine about the new rival in the browsersphere.

"It should come as no real surprise that Google has done something here — their business is the web, and they’ve got clear opinions on how things should be, and smart people thinking about how to make things better."

Chrome will be a browser optimized for the things that they see as important, and it’ll be interesting to see how it evolves," he wrote.

He welcomed the competition and said collaboration between Mozilla and Google on certain projects would continue.

Dean Hachamovitch, general manager of Microsoft's Internet Explorer, was more bullish.

"The browser landscape is highly competitive, but people will choose Internet Explorer 8 for the way it puts the services they want right at their fingertips, respects their personal choices about how they want to browse and, more than any other browsing technology, puts them in control of their personal data online," he said in a statement.

Chrome will be available for download from the morning of Wednesday 3rd September, PST.


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Wed 16 Jul 2008

Quantum information technology

Enigma variations

Jul 10th 2008
From The Economist print edition

Quantom atricle.jpg

A device that counts photons will secure optical data networks from prying eyes

REMOVE the outer coating from a strand of optical fibre, bend it and attach a sensor to detect the tiny amount of light that will leak out. Hacking into an optical network like this is the modern equivalent of a wire tap. But now a laboratory in Cambridge, England, has found a way to turn a hacker’s screen instantly blank if he infiltrates the network. This is because the data are being encrypted in a new and probably unbreakable way with one of the first practical devices to be developed for quantum information technology.

The idea of using the more arcane aspects of quantum theory to do things that standard information technology cannot manage has been around for a while. One branch of the field is quantum computing. This, if it can be made to work routinely, promises machines that can do lots of calculations in parallel instead of one at a time, and thus solve problems existing computers cannot manage. The other branch is quantum cryptography, which promises unbreakable codes for messages.

Q’s laboratory

The device in question is a photon detector. That is not very exciting by itself, but this detector counts single photons (the particles of which light is composed)—and can do so at room temperature. Most quantum systems are upset by heat. Orion, for example, operates near absolute zero, and previous attempts to build single-photon detectors have suffered similar constraints. Dr Shields’s device, however, is a simple modification of the sort of equipment that is already used to detect multiple photons, and should thus be easy to deploy.

Such devices, known as avalanche photodiodes, rely on the fact that when a photon hits a semiconductor it often knocks an electron out of place, creating a positively charged “hole” in the crystal lattice in the place where the negatively charged electron used to be. If an electric charge is applied to the crystal, these holes and electrons will move in opposite directions, knocking into the lattice and creating more and more holes. The resulting cascade of electrons and holes is easy to detect, showing that light has struck.

What is not easy to work out is exactly how many photons have arrived. To do that, you need to look at the signal just after it has been created, when its size bears some relation to the number of holes that started it. At that point, though, the signal is small compared with the electronic “noise” caused by the machine’s operation. What Dr Shields did was to work out a way of subtracting the noise, and thus extracting the signal.

Such a photon counter is essential if quantum cryptography is to work, because it will allow what are known as quantum repeaters to be built. In a classical telecommunications system the signal has to be boosted by a repeater every 80km or so. But a traditional repeater destroys the quantum states of the photons, such as their planes of polarisation. That does not matter for classical telecoms, but matters very much for quantum cryptography, which relies on the fact that no eavesdropper can intercept the message without changing those quantum states, and thus giving away the fact that he is on the line.

Dr Shields’s photon detector, however, permits cryptographers to use a phenomenon called quantum entanglement to make a repeater that does not destroy quantum states. Entangled photons share quantum states.

Such a quantum repeater uses groups of three photons for each bit of the message. One—call it A—is part of the original transmission. The other two, B and C, are created further down the line in an entangled state, and sent off in different directions. C goes to the recipient while B is fed into a device called a beam-splitter, where it meets A. The purpose of the beam-splitter is to compare the quantum states of A and B. If they are the same, the two photons will come out of the beam-splitter together. Since B and C have the same quantum states, that means C also has the same quantum state as A. If A and B are different, they will come out of the beam-splitter in one of three different places, depending on exactly which way they are different. The information from the beam-splitter is then transmitted separately to the recipient, so that he knows whether to accept C unaltered as part of the message, or apply one of three mathematical transformations to it, to arrive at the right result (this does not compromise secrecy, since any eavesdropper will not know what the transformation needs to be applied to). It is for this reason that you need a device, such as Dr Shields’s, which can detect and count individual photons as they come out of different parts of the beam-splitter. Now that there is one, the eavesdropper’s days may be numbered.

Source :


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