Tuesday, November 24, 2009

How many computer do you need in a room?

Million instructions per second (MIPS)

It is one of those inevitabilities working in technology. I recently found myself surrounded by 5 computers in my office. Two desktops and three laptops.

One desktop is my official office machine. I also have an official laptop for mobile computing, viz working from home. I acquired a second desktop to test out some beta software where I don't want to accidentally compromise my official machine. Then, I am testing two laptops right now because I am managing a conference where PARC is attending.

How many keyboards can one person handle?

I think the first take away is that I need to train my toes to type since two hands simply are not sufficient for the task. The second take away for me is that I am probably in possession of more computing power on my finger tip than the entire world had until the 1970's. Final take away? I need to get a life. :-)!


Monday, November 23, 2009

PARC at Printed Electronics USA 2009

Printed Electronics USA

A leader in Printed Electronics, PARC offers three unique capabilities to industry partners:

* Material Characterization: Characterizing and optimizing material performance in devices and circuits for printed electronics market materials suppliers;
* Application Development: Designing circuits and fabricating proof of concept, including sensors and display elements for clients exploring specific applications; and
* Full System Prototyping: Integrating complete systems containing printed electronics and conventional thin film components and/or standard silicon circuitry.

Please visit PARC at Booth 12 or contact PEUSA09@parc.com for more information. For more information on PARC's Printed Electronics capabilities, please visit www.parc.com/peusa09.

Jet-Printing: From Drops to Electronic Devices

Dr. Jurgen Daniel will be presenting in the conference on December 3rd at 12:05pm, discussing how to use jet-printing to fabricate flexible backplanes for driving displays and sensor-tapes for recording blast events in the battlefield.


Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Next-gen Advertising using Context Mining

Reality or Context Mining

Migitti is a project that takes advantage of PARC's work on mobile computing and the new information afforded by mobile handsets.

The logical question is what else can you do with a deep personalized recommendation system like that. Maybe it is just a sign of the time taht we live in, advertising seems to be an obvious avenue to explore.

Activity-Based Advertising: Techniques and Challenges

Lots of people are making noise in this space, but from what I can tell, PARC's team are the only people who are exploring the entire eco-system for a total solution.


Monday, November 16, 2009

R2D2 vs. C3PO

Star Wars

I re-watched Star Wars: A New Hope over the weekend. I suspect it would not come as a surprise that I am a star wars fan being in Silicon Valley. More broadly speaking, Silicon Valley is full of people who are of the same ilk.

This reminded me of a chief scientist friend of mine who works in the Los Angeles area.


One time he wanted to highlight what he was vs. was not looking for in a particular technology. To give it more texture, he said "this is like getting C3PO when I wanted R2D2."

And, instead of light bulbs in the room, he got a lot of blank stares.

(For the uninitiated, C-3PO and R2-D2 are two major characters in the Star Wars series.)

I am happy to report that in a recently visit to Silicon Valley his audience got the droid reference with knowing smiles.


Tuesday, November 10, 2009

What do Mr IP and Mr TCP talk about?

Hero Worshiping

Vint Cerf, commonly referred to as father of IP, came to talk at PARC's Forum last week on the topic of "Information on the go".

Before the Forum talk, he came to visit with PARC and mostly hung out near the area where I sit. So, for a while, my area was pretty busy with people coming by to say hi to Vint.

Naturally, more as a brush with greatness opportunity, I emptied my mug and decided to go to the same area for a bit of star sighting.

What do father of IP and father of TCP talk about?

In case you do not know, Van Jacobson, father of TCP, works a few doors from me.

So, as I was doing my beverage refill, Vint, Van, and a couple other people were making tea and chatting. So, what do those groundbreaking great minds spending their time chin wagging about at PARC?

Eggs. How to prepare an egg. Specifically, comparing methods in making softboil eggs - how to get a hard yoke, a soft yoke, or a runny yoke.

Now you know.


Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Smart Phones of Near Future and PARC's Migitti Project

New York Times on Smart Phones

Here is an article from NY Times on what the future of smart phone may look like and how key players are pushing the envelop.

PARC's Migitti project was one of the featured solutions in the article. Beyond the technology, we also deployed extensive social science analysis to ensure its usability.

Migitti Project