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Tag: RESEARCH

Webclip for Google Chrome snips text to your Google Docs

There are plenty of good note taking and clipping tools around -- like Evernote -- but maybe you just want something lightweight to help you gather research or quotes for use in a project. Webclip is a handy little extension for Google Chrome which is up to the task. It's got a single purpose: to save Web page text you select to Google Docs. Once you've installed the extension, just highlight...

EU creates a 200,000 system grid for researchers

The European Union has unveiled the European Grid Infrastructure project, which will allow researchers to tap into the collective power of more than 200,000 desktop computers across 30 EU nations. That's a whole lotta computing power. As is the case with similar distributed computing projects like SETI@home, the thought behind EGI is that those 200,000 computer systems are sitting idle more...

Microsoft Street Slide makes more sense than hopping around Google's bubbles

As the video above explains, moving around panoramic views of a street is great if you can go "bubble to bubble" of a panorama, looking for what you want. That is, a panorama with up and down info is much like a bubble. But if you want to "slide" down the street, you want a more linear view of that street, and what's in the sky or on the ground really isn't that important. Microsoft Research...

Experiments at Bell Labs show 300Mbps possible over conventional copper twisted-pair DSL

Not content to give up and suckle on the buzzworded cable teat just yet, Bell Labs has just successfully tested a variant of DSL that is capable of up to 800Mbps -- about 100 megabytes per second -- using just a pair of traditional DSL connections. The range is short -- only a few hundred meters -- but the same technology, according to Alcatel-Lucent, is capable of 100Mbps over a 1,000 meter...

IBM researchers devise a system to help bloggers get past the 'wall'

Proper writing -- you know, novels and stuff -- shares a few common traits with blogging. The most common is 'writers' block' or THE WALL. You simply run out of things to write. It can either creep up on you slowly, or just suddenly emerge before you like a big... brick thing... but either way, it's a problem. And IBM has a solution! In true, researchers-are-not-very-good-at-naming-things fashion,...

New software that can automatically make photos more aesthetic is being developed

Developed in a joint effort by Israeli and Chinese universities, a new piece of technology that algorithmically makes photos more aesthetic might soon find its way to desktop products like iPhoto or Photoshop. The software works by applying 'standard' rules of 'good' photography, such as the rule of thirds. By dividing the image into nine segments, the software moves prominent objects -- trees,...

Apple responsible for 99.4% of all mobile app sales in 2009

We knew it was going to be big, but I don't think anyone thought for a moment that Apple's market share would be 99.4% of the three billion total app sales. Gartner's market research results from 2009 are in and, as Ars Technica reports, the figures are utterly astronomical. Not only were there two and a half billion app sales in 2009 (up from 500 million in the second half of 2008), but the...

Shocker: study shows visual alerts distract you from doing work

The results of a new study show that you could get serious productivity gains by disabling visual alerts on incoming email, tweets, instant messages and the like. This isn't a big surprise I'm sure -- companies have been stamping down on 'rampant email reading' throughout the work day for a while now -- but what is surprising is just how much a single alert window can throw you off-track. It's...

Over 40 percent of Facebook users invite identity theft by blindly accepting friend requests

In the shocking, yet not really unexpected, results of an investigative study by Sophos, 41% of Facebook users blindly accept friend requests from unknown contacts. The probe by Sophos also looks into what data we make readily available. Scarily, almost all of us display our full date of birth and email addresses -- two pieces of information which make identity theft incredibly easy, especially...

Virtual reality helps some smokers quit

Can playing a video game four times a week for twelve weeks help you stop smoking? Apparently so for some. A small study conducted by the GRAP Occupational Psychology Clinic and the University of Quebec has found positive results from a specially designed, experimental, VR video game. Smokers who play the game have a slightly higher chance of quitting the habit than those in a control group...

Facebook's Gaydar: is it accurate?

Several news sources have started reporting on a 2007 research project by a group of MIT students who found they could accurately predict Facebook users' sexual preferences based on the people they were friends with. The project, referred to as "Gaydar," sampled data from 1,600 men (only 33 of whom were out as gay on Facebook) to create an algorithm that supposedly predicts whether a user is gay...

Track Your Happiness on your iPhone

Track Your Happiness is the front end of a research project that seeks to figure out which factors contribute most to our happiness. If you sign up, fill out a 10-minute questionnaire about your life situation, and let the researchers poll you about your mood a few times a day via iPhone, you'll eventually get back a personal report. At first, this seemed a bit intrusive to me, but iPhone users...

Weird Wednesday: software that records your dreams?

Each Wednesday Download Squad takes a look at the weirdest software out there. From future tech being cooked up in the lab to bizarre shareware, we'll cover the offbeat and off-the-wall. If you have a suggestion for a strange application, leave it in the comments. Scientists are working on ways to read your mind using software. It makes sense that if you know how to read brainwaves you'd be able...

Use iBreadcrumbs to retrace your steps on the web

iBreadcrumbs is a browser toolbar you can use to record the websites you visit while you're working on a particular project, so you can find your research again or share your sources with someone else. Sure, you could do this manually, by posting your finds to del.icio.us or a similar bookmarking service, and giving them all the same tag, but iBreadcrumbs makes that look like way too much work....

6 degrees of MSN Messenger

Will Smith and Kevin Bacon may both know that there's no more than six degrees of separation between everyone on the planet. But the folks at Microsoft's research division now have quantifiable proof. Well, sort of. Microsoft Research did a bit of analysis with raw MSN messenger data. Without actually reading any private messages, (the data all remained anonymous) the team tracked the trajectory...