Weather Technology at NASA

Weather Technology at NASA

Weather forecasting technology has made great strides in the last twenty years, says NASA meteorologist Sam Hardy. But, he cautions, “It’s still like gambling. You think you’ve got all the right numbers and circumstance look just about right, when BAM, a storm brews up from nowhere or the wind gets up to incredible tricks.” Sam has been a NASA weathercaster for the past 15 years, and he says probably the biggest improvement in weather technology is not the span of satellites that now crisscross the globe high above, but rather…

Going to the Airport? Why Not Fly There!

Going to the Airport? Why Not Fly There!

Several major companies world-wide are feverishly racing to become the first to offer a flying technology that will whisk you above the crowded gridlocked streets of a city to the airport or theater or shopping center. It may sound like Back to the Future Part Gazillion, but the technology is almost in place to begin liftoff. eVolo, a German company, is working on a multicopter that features twenty propellers to lift you up and over the ground to your destination. Each propeller is controlled by a separate computer system. EHang…

The Passing of the Password

The Passing of the Password

Hackers can obtain your password from the black market as easily as they can walk down the street and buy a bag of potato chips. Or they can dig in and find it themselves, if they’re even half smart. There’s no doubt that the once impregnable password is no longer much of a watchdog against thieves who want to steal your personal information. And firewalls are pretty much burnt down. An new technology company called UnifyID, out of San Francisco, thinks it knows how to once again safeguard your cyber…

Biotechnology is Saving the Earth’s Water

Biotechnology is Saving the Earth’s Water

The Stockholm International Water Institute met recently to ponder how our planet’s shrinking water resources can be bolstered. One way that can be done, they decided, was through more sophisticated and dedicated use of biotechnology. Farmers who use technology to monitor the temperature of their soil can significantly decrease the water they apply on fields. It’s no longer guesswork; they know that when the soil is cooler the plants require less water to stay healthy. Recycling biotechnology now allows waste water from livestock farms, once held in noisome ponds until…

Virtual Documentaries are Coming!

Virtual Documentaries are Coming!

The founder of the Discovery Channel, John Hendricks, is now planning a new foray into discovery — developing the virtual documentary. He says that with virtual reality technology advancing so rapidly, he wants to be ready to offer viewers virtual documentaries on everything from the Antarctic to the last of the Bengal tigers. “It’s really almost here” he enthuses. “The materials for headsets are becoming more lightweight and the hardware and software involved are being simplified almost daily, so that in a few years anyone should be able to sit…

Is Technology Ruining Education?

Is Technology Ruining Education?

Joy Ransom teaches English at Boston University, and she is beginning to despair of ever fully gaining her student’s attention during classroom instruction. The reason, as she sees it, is technology. “I have a rule that students must turn off their cell phones during class, and if they don’t and the class is interrupted by their cell phone ringing or sounding an alarm they have to read an extra 20 pages in whatever piece of literature we’re studying at the time. But in the end that’s counter-productive. I want my…

Technology to Save a Trip to the Doctor’s Office

Technology to Save a Trip to the Doctor’s Office

You suspect you have high cholesterol, or want to know how fertile you and your spouse are. That means a trip to the doctor’s office, and then maybe a long wait. But new technology company EverlyWell is gearing up to help people make one less trip to the doctor by offering home test kits for things like lipids and lack of vitamin D. The kits are made of the latest lightweight recyclable plastic, and cost almost nothing to ship. The kits are mailed directly to the home address, with simple…

New Radar Technology to Improve Tesla Autopilot Driving

New Radar Technology to Improve Tesla Autopilot Driving

After a number of crashes last year, Tesla Motor Company considered pulling back from the automatic pilot car. But they are now ready to overcome some of the challenges that still bedeviled the software of the electric car. Company press releases say that they will be relying on an advanced radar system to avoid such things as scrapping another car when it is over the lane line or crashing into an object that the car in front has swerved to avoid. The technology is not exactly new, having been around…

Cool Software Makes a Game out of Learning Piano

Cool Software Makes a Game out of Learning Piano

For centuries, the piano has been a beloved instrument in the world of music, used by both singer-songwriters and classical composers. Many people have learned to play the piano, some write their own songs, and most learn to perform their favorite music. Yet in the fast-paced modern world with its economic concerns, traditional piano lessons may consume too much time and money for some students. Thankfully, it is now possible to learn to play piano online with Playground Sessions, which is more affordable and flexible. This offers the benefits of…