Large round up today…
Depressed? There's an App for That
Researchers at Northwestern University in Chicago are working on new technologies to detect and treat depression. Among the approaches being looked at is a mood-sensitive smartphone that will check up on the depressed. The takeaway here is the use of new technologies in different ways; anyone who can adapt social media and smartphones to a new, critical sphere would be heralded a hero.
Astronaut Applications Up
Over 6300 people have applied to NASA to become astronauts, the second highest annual number of such applications. Nine to fifteen will be chosen after a battery of tests (medical and psychological) and interviews with existing astronauts. NASA is looking beyond academic and professional background and will examine hobbies and life experience. Geeks, looks like NASA wants you.
With the fight against SOPA and PIPA, hacktivism has gone mainstream. Along with Anonymous' fight against such organizations as Scientology, white supremecists, and child pornographers, their work against laws that would censor the Internet made the news. The hacktivists' trend towards self-policing also helps quell questions about their motivations.
Not helping RIM's fortunes is the trend of corporations to allow their employees to use Apple and Android devices. Although the Blackberry has strong security, companies such as Credit Suisse, Barclays Capital, and Standard Chartered have allowed some employees to use personal devices, claiming a savings from paying a monthly fee to RIM. Research in Motion announced in November a move to offer security features to iPhone and Android users. The use of personal devices for corporate business could harm the companies, though; many countries have strict laws on how personal data can be disseminated and an employee's personal device could be used at home by members of the family, breaching privacy.
iWant my iTV
Both Rogers and Bell are in negotiations to bring Apple's iTV to Canada. Details are sketchy at the moment, but it appears that Apple approached both companies for negotiations.
IBM's Watson Turns to Sales
Although Watson, IBM's AI and Jeopardy ace, isn't available for sale, the program is helping Big Blue with sales. IBM is paving the way to a commercial version of Watson with a line of "Ready for Watson" hardware and software. Again, Big Blue seems to be doing a lot behind the scenes and may burst out when least expected.