GeekSpeak for 2009-05-16

Guns Don't Kill People, Robots Do

The Geeks discuss the Hubble Space Telescope, other geek news, and take your calls with questions and comments about technology.

Zapatag.com - Report Bad Drivers

Report Bad Drivers, License Plate Search and Tracking

California open source digital textbook plan faces barriers

There is already plenty of textbook-ready material available on the Internet in the public domain or under open licenses, but the real challenge is compiling and editing it so that it will meet the state’s exacting standards. California is known for having the most demanding textbook evaluation practices in the country, with publishers forced to go to extreme lengths to meet state requirements. The arduous review process is forcing some publishing companies to stop selling books in the state and is also a factor that has contributed significantly to the rising cost of K-12 textbooks in California.

BIOS Maker Aims to Retake the PC

Building on the virtualization technology more common to high-power workstations and data centers, the company has revamped its BIOS software to offer features that people tend to associate with a full-blown operating system: the ability to access more peripherals, such as disks and mouses, and networking and wireless communications.

Hackers 'destroy' flight sim site

The site, which launched in 1996, covered all aspects of flight simulation, although its main focus was on Microsoft’s Flight Simulator.

The attack took down the site’s two servers and the owners had not established an external backup system.

Soft Ground Puts Spirit in Danger

The five wheels that still rotate on NASA’s Mars Exploration Rover Spirit have been slipping severely in soft soil during recent attempts to drive, sinking the wheels about halfway into the ground.

Hubble Telescope

After grappling the telescope on Wednesday, astronauts have been installing and repairing new gear to revive Hubble.

Nerd Pride Day

Nerd Pride Day, or Geek Pride Day, is an initiative which claims the right of every person to be a nerd or a geek. Of Spanish origin (“día del orgullo friki” in Spain), it is celebrated nowadays among Spanish frikis (an equivalent of geeks and nerds).1

This day is celebrated on May 25 since 2006, celebrating the premiere of the first Star Wars movie in 1977.

Myst as an iPhone game!

Introducing Myst for the iPhone™ and iPod touch®. The complete worlds of Myst, in all its original elegance, in the palm of your hand.

Remember how the surrealistic island became your world? The note, the garden, the books, the pages, the brothers, the choices? Now Myst can become your world no matter where in the world you are.

Rocket Belts of Tecnologia Aeroespacial Mexicana

Another hydrogen peroxide powered rocket belt

JET P.I. - Jetpack International

Now THIS is a true JET pack

Lost robot crosses city by asking directions

This is similar to what I reported on a few weeks ago, but more technically complex

Robots are getting better at finding their way around unknown areas, and making their own maps as they explore. But robots lost in urban areas don’t need to rely on their own faculties to get from place to place, German roboticists have shown.

Kod*lab : RiSE V3: robot thta climbs poles

Robotic Pole-climbing Quadrupedal Robot: Unlike RiSE V1 and RiSE V2 this newer version adopts a quadrupedal configuration, and was designed by Boston Dynamics, with input from the RiSE Project consortium.

RiSE V3 uses brushless DC motors that increase power density. Coupled with a dramatically different leg mechanism and unique gaited behavior, this robot exhibits rapid climbing (upwards of 22 cm/s) up a vertical surface such as a telephone pole.


! Listener Photo of Hubble
Listener Don sent us a link to [his picture of Hubble|http://www.flickr.com/photos/doneastwest/3526188633/in/set-72057594110936581/] on flickr. Thanks Don!