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Automatic

Computers

Professor's algorithm writes technical reports, romance novels could be next

Philip M. Parker, a marketing professor at INSEAD (the European Institute of Business Administration), has written and patented a system that uses an algorithm to automatically compile data into book form. Between his works and those of his research group (ICON Group International), he has over 900,000 books currently for sale on Amazon. More than a smart search engine, his system only requires a few minutes or a few hours to scan the databases relevant to any given topic and organize that data into a technical report. Next stop? Romance novels. Read More

Around The Home

Breville One-Touch Tea Maker produces the perfect cuppa every time

Even that most basic of kitchen appliances, the humble teakettle, is getting a high-tech makeover in the form of Breville’s One-Touch Tea Maker. The fully programmable unit takes the guesswork out of brewing that perfect cuppa by providing the right water temperatures and brewing times to suit different tea varieties. The device even does the “jiggling” for you thanks to a fully automated tea basket that moves up and down to gently agitate the leaves to precisely infuse your tea.Read More

Digital Cameras

scenechronize - film production gets web-based

If you’ve ever worked on a major film project, you’ll know just how complex all phases of the production can be - scripts and schedules get faxed and/or emailed back and forth, a bazillion phone calls and messages are made and left, and then whenever anything goes wrong (which is usually about once every 15 minutes) everything needs to be rejigged, and everyone needs to be notified of the changes. If only there were some way of posting that information where all the cast and crew could see it, people could make changes to it, and then everyone would be made aware of those changes. Gee, anything come to mind? Yes, it’s a new application for our friend, The Internet. scenechronize is its name, and it promises to save filmmakers a ton of confusion, frustration, time, money and paper.Read More

Around The Home

The Autonomous Saucier provides an extra hand in the kitchen

If I had to choose a job in a restaurant kitchen, then the saucier or sauce chef would be my last choice. Considered inferior to the sous-chef and head-chef, the saucier is responsible for preparing all the accompanying sauces for meals…making sure they aren’t lumpy, they don’t stick to the pan or worse, burn. I’ve seen enough TV celebrity chefs abusing their kitchen staff to know this is one job I would refuse. However, if I had the Autonomous Saucier at hand - all would be fine. This clever kitchen device automatically stirs your sauce whilst you get on with other food preparation. Pure genius…Read More

Environment

Wattbox: Habit-learning device to lower energy bills

The adage “less is more” rings true when discussing energy usage - as energy costs rise, using less saves you more money each year. And studies have shown that householders who know how much energy they use on a daily basis tend to use significantly less. A new device called the Wattbox - a smart control unit for central heating and hot water heaters that learns householders' energy habits and provide immediate feedback on consumption - could deliver home energy savings of up to 20 percent without compromising comfort say UK researchers. A great feature of the Wattbox is that it is retrofittable, meaning it’s suitable for all houses, not just new ones.Read More

Around The Home

ASUS hoping to clean up with robotic E-Cleaner

ASUS subsidiary AGAiT Technology is the latest to have a bash at realizing the dream of robots performing domestic tasks with the EC01 E-Cleaner robotic vacuum cleaner. As well as offering similar cleaning functionality to that of its rivals, the EC01 also benefits from a sanitizing UV lamp which disinfects as the unit vacuums.Read More

Computers

Automatically generated social networking status updates

Ahhh, social network status updates. How would we know what breathtakingly exciting (or mind-numbingly boring) activities our friends and family are up to from one moment to the next without them? And if you sometimes find it’s a chore just reading these missives, spare a thought for those people writing them. But soon, by combining networking and messaging platforms with emerging ambient intelligence systems that use sensors and smart objects to create awareness of users’ whereabouts and activities, such status updates and other social information could be generated automatically.Read More

Home Entertainment

Toshiba's Regza SV series LED-backlit HDTVs

Toshiba has chosen IFA 2009 to confirm that this month Europeans will be able to get their hands on two new full 1080p HD televisions in its Regza range, a 46in and a 55in. As well as being LED backlit for the first time, these new SV models also sport a sensor that monitors ambient light and constantly readjusts image settings so that the viewer automatically gets the best possible picture.Read More

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