Introducing the Gizmag Store

Communications

Telenoid R1 mirrors the movements of a remote user

It’s been suggested that one of the main reasons video calling hasn’t taken off is because a lot of the time people want to be heard and not seen. A new robot would allow callers to remain unseen, while creating a physical presence of the caller for the receiver of the call. Developed at Osaka University in collaboration with the Advanced Telecommunications Research Institute International (ATR), – the creators of Robovie II – Telenoid R1 is a portable robot that is designed to relay a remote user’s presence during long distance communications by mirroring their movements.  Read More

Online surveillance is now easier than ever (Image: VoxEfx via Flickr)

If it hasn't become apparent to you yet, you are living in an age when your every online step is being monitored. The notion of communications privacy has been steamrolled in the interests of security, and the occasional tiny chance we get to peek back at the people who make it their business to watch us is truly frightening. Two new stories from America this week give a rare glimpse behind the curtain at just how closely you're being watched, and by whom.  Read More

The QUIETPRO   Intelligent Hearing System protects users from loud noises, while allowing ...

It’s a problem as old as the protective earplug itself - if you block out the loud, harmful noises, you also block out the quieter sounds, such as peoples’ voices... that is, unless you’ve got a QUIETPRO+ Intelligent Hearing System stuck in your ears. The setup consists of a pair of fairly regular-looking in-ear plugs, wired iPod-style to a small electronic control unit. When the system detects a dangerously-loud noise, it automatically sends noise-canceling sound waves to the headset. When things are quiet, it amplifies sounds like human voices, so the user is actually able to hear better than they would without it.  Read More

Experimental setup for THz-pump and optical-probe measurements used by the researchers

It’s a sign of the times when the speed of electrons moving through wires is seen as pedestrian, but that’s increasingly the case as technology moves towards the new world of optical communication and computing. Optical communication systems that use the speed of light as the signal are still controlled and limited by electrical signaling at the end. But physicists have now discovered a way to use a gallium arsenide nanodevice as a signal processor at “terahertz” speeds that could help end the bottleneck.  Read More

Cathay Pacific to offer broadband on flights by 2012

Passengers boarding either a Cathay Pacific Airways or Dragonair jet in 2012 will be able to make use of broadband connectivity. This week, the airline confirmed an agreement with Panasonic Avionics Corporation to provide broadband access across its entire fleet with download speeds of up to 50Mbps (to the aircraft – not individual passengers), as well as call and data access for cell phones.  Read More

Faster, faster ... engineers are hoping to convert the wireless link between a cell phone ...

Electrical engineers from University of California San Diego (UCSD) are building the foundations for wireless networks of the future. Hoping to bring mass access to the the kind of high capacity, extremely low power wireless networks found only in expensive defense and satellite applications, the researchers are merging silicon chip technologies with sophisticated wireless communications tools in the millimeter and microwave range. This work, according to UCSD, could result in personal wireless networks that make current high-speed wireless connections feel slower than the dial-up connections from the early 1990s.  Read More

IBM researchers have developed their latest building block in their effort to achieve phot...

Researchers at IBM have made important progress toward creating silicon circuits that communicate using pulses of light rather than electrical signals. This is thanks to a device called nanophotonic avalanche photodetector (NAP), which, as detailed on the journal Nature, is the fastest of its kind and is a major step toward achieving energy-efficient computing that will have significant implications for the future of electronics.  Read More

New technology developed at Purdue University could eliminate wires for communications in ...

In a step that could see communication wires banished from homes and offices researchers have developed a miniature device capable of converting ultra-fast laser pulses into bursts of radio-frequency signals. The advance could enable all communications, from HDTV broadcasts to secure computer connections, to be transmitted from a single base station.  Read More

An artist's conception of how the optical modem could function at a deep ocean cabled obse...

Underwater Remotely Operated Vehicles (ROV’s) are at the forefront of new discoveries and important research in the ocean depths, but they are still hindered by cumbersome cables that connect them to their support ships at the surface. It brings back memories of the days before radio-controlled toys, when our remote-control cars had wires coming out of them that ran up to the controllers in our hands. Now, thanks to scientists and engineers at Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI), ROV’s may soon be set free from their tethers. The researchers have developed an undersea optical communications system, which they describe as “a virtual revolution in high-speed undersea data collection and transmission.”  Read More

First germanium laser could pave way for optical computers

One of the issues of current chip design is the excessive power needed to transport and store ever increasing amounts of data. A possible solution is to use optics not just for sending data, but also to store information and perform calculations, which would reduce heat dissipation and increase operating speeds. Disproving previous beliefs in the matter, MIT researchers have demonstrated the first laser built from germanium which can perform optical communications... and it's also cheap to manufacture.  Read More

Looking for something? Search our 26,504 articles