Emerging technologies are exciting. They can offer new perspectives on the world, save us time and labor, and can enormously change and benefit society. Thus far in my time writing this blog, I’ve explored a number of the fun possibilities that tomorrow may bring: consumer jetpacks, simpler CAPTCHAs, and burrito vending machines, to name a few. However, some of my own favorite uses of technology don’t bring humankind closer to an idealized potential future, but connect us more firmly to the past.
If you've ever created an online account or posted to an internet forum, you've probably had to struggle through correctly transliterating a few distorted letters and numbers. That's a CAPTCHA. Luckily, (some of) your CAPTCHA-related worries may be over: Google recently announced it would transitioning to other tests for users to demonstrate their humanity.
I’ve been doing the bulk of my shopping on-line for a few years now, and I am convinced that there is no better way to shop. I avoid the crowds, the parking problems and inclement weather. My orders are delivered right to my door. Best of all, I can shop when I want to without walking for miles in search of the best price.
How can you tell whether an advertised price is really a bargain? Here are two websites that can help.
There's an old adage among frequent internet users: "Don't read the comments."
Do you ever have moments when you really could use a scanner, but don’t want to spend your hard-earned money on another gadget that you will rarely use? The library has a great scanner that scans documents to e-mail and flash drives, and you can use it for free. For those times when you don’t have the time to travel or wait, Genius Scan is an app for your tablet or smartphone that turns your device into a handheld scanner.
Dutch artist Helmut Smits has built a device he calls The Real Thing that separates clean water from Coca-Cola.
Halloween is over, so you’ll soon be sick of candy, bored of the colors orange and black, no longer amused by how easily your costume fell apart, and probably aren’t really interested in watching cliche horror films about creepy dolls. But while you may be done with scary, for some people the terrifying and abnormal is just a day at work.
These people belong to the Foundation, an organization tasked with securing anomalous objects or entities, containing them in special facilities, and protecting us from their bizarre and otherworldly effects.
Ryan Howerter, a graphic design student at Colorado State University, has done just that with the pinhole camera. Howerter fashioned a tiny fully-functional pinhole camera from a two-by-two square Lego brick.
Beloved by some and reviled by many, the Comic Sans font has become a poster child for poor graphic design. At least once over the past fifteen years or so I've wondered what went into creating a font so dopey and saccharine.
Have you ever played a choose-your-own-adventure game? Well, if you have ever wanted to write one, I may have an interesting tool to help you get started.