Into Each Life Some Rain Must Fall
Synthopia notices a new video tour of the Iphone. "Seriously droolworthy." On a more jarring note, Apple is being accused of using models with huge hands to make the Iphone seem smaller than it really is.
While we're on the subject of computers, you've heard to computer enhancing human abilities, but have you heard about human assisted computers? Microsoft looks to put a man in the computer loop, subconciously at least.
Desney Tan, a researcher at Microsoft Research, and Pradeep Shenoy, a graduate student at the University of Washington, have devised a scheme that uses electro-encephalograph (EEG) caps to collect the brain activity of people looking at pictures of faces and nonfaces, such as horses, cars, and landscapes. The pair found that even when the subjects' objective wasn't to distinguish the faces from the nonfaces, their brain activity indicated that they subconsciously identified the difference. The researchers wrote software that churns through the EEG data and classifies faces and nonfaces based on the subjects' response. When a single person viewed an image once, the system was able to identify faces with up to 72.5 percent accuracy. Results were even better using data from eight people who had viewed a particular image twice: accuracy jumped to 98 percent.
"Given that the brain is constantly processing external information," says Tan, "we can start to use the brain as a processor." In one scenario, he explains, pictures would be placed in people's peripheral vision, which doesn't require focused cognitive attention, so they could go about their daily tasks.
Communications, computers and people are a perfect synergistic storm. Michael Yon, covering Baquba, has good words from the Stryker combat vehicle. I doubt that praise is exclusively for its automotive qualities, but probably refers to its situational awareness capabilities. It can attack from the march, says Yon. That means, I'm speculating, that you can send a unit around to a weak spot and it can coordinate its combat activities with the rest of the battle. This is a function of computing, communication and the human interface.