GeekSpeak for 2012-06-23

Big Camera, Mega Camera, 360 Camera, No Camera

Lots of talk of cameras, a very expensive Apple I, games make you smarter, water color electric sheep, and much more news of the week with Alex, Al, and Lyle.

Gigapixel camera catches the smallest details

A camera made from off-the-shelf electronics can take snapshots of one billion pixels each — about one thousand times larger than images taken by conventional cameras.

Android app steals contactless credit card data

A German penetration tester has posted to the Google store an Android application capable of siphoning credit card data from contactless bank cards.

The app, dubbed paycardreader, will skim card numbers and expiry dates, along with transactions and merchant IDs, and was successfully tested against a German PayPass Mastercard.

How Reddit Got Huge: Tons of Fake Accounts

Is Reddit the most powerful website on the Internet? Yeah, that’s a pretty bold question to even be asking, especially considering it’s only ranked 121 on Alexa. But in terms of power, not traffic, Reddit is certainly up there. It’s huge, it’s deep, and it’s got an uncanny ability to push content into the viral zone (which should be the name of a TV show) and basically be the Internet’s tastemaker. But how did it get that way?

Brain Games & Brain Training - Lumosity

Your brain, just brighter.

Improve brain health and performance.

Brain training produces real world benefits
Enhance memory, attention and creativity
Easy, web-based brain training program

Games | Games for Change

Games that help create change.

..on deathbed: will you regret the hours spent playing games?'

The usually-optimistic game designer Jane McGonigal has been thinking about whether those of us who love to play video games will regret it in the end. She keeps meeting people who think gamers will. She keeps meeting people who doubt any of us will wish we played more games.

Turn any room into a camera obscura

ZOOM! Enhance! Manipulating blurry digital images in TV programmes like CSI often produces unfeasibly clear pictures of a suspect’s face, but it turns out that it is possible to extract important forensic details from shadowy images after all.

Secure and Trusted Email

Automated systems will get better and better at looking at our data. It is trivial to read email over most networks, but we assume that they are personal. Using Pretty Good Privacy (PGP) will make your email private and personal.

Remote Control USB Cockroach at Your Command

Leave it to the land of the rising sun to not only make a toy cockroach, but a robotic, remote controlled, USB enabled, glow-in-the-dark cockroach from hell; or what the Japanese call the “Gokiraji USB infrared RC cockroach”. Yes, Japanese kitsch maker Japan Trust Technology has finally created a toy that will simultaneously creep adults out and children alike, though thankfully cockroaches don’t come in plastic… yet.

Watercolor animation of Blade Runner

Swedish artist Anders Ramsell animated 3,285 watercolor paintings to recreate this sequence from Blade Runner. “Blade Runner Aquarelle Edition, Part 1 (Teaser)”

Auto log-in to all your sites with Ford's KeyFree Login app

This clever app will unlock all your passwords when you sit down at your computer. That’s right, the machines are still our slaves – for now.
Ford’s key-free tech is nifty – but if you don’t have a Ford motor, it’s hard to get excited about. But now, in a bid to share the key-free love, Ford’s created an app that logs you into all your favourite websites – Gmail, Facebook, Twitter – as soon as you put your smartphone next to your computer.

GoPano - Create, Share 360 Degree Videos and Panoramic Images

A 360 video camera attachement for your smart phone’s camera.

For Designers To Constantly Doodle, A Giant Post-it Note Desk

For those who constantly forget to wear their Post-it watches, and like to take down notes on their desks, Milan-based design firm SoupStudio created an almost-ideal workstation for designers that always give you access to reminders and free doodling space.

Called ‘Post-Itable’, the desk is a stack of giant Post-its so that users can doodle away or take notes without the hassle of looking for a clean piece of paper.

Functioning Apple 1 sold at auction with Steve Jobs memo

Sotheby’s has auctioned off a functioning Apple 1 computer, alongside a memo written by Steve Jobs during his time at Atari.
The computer sold for double the estimate, reaching $374,500. The memo sold for $27,500, also much higher than expected.

And, Al emailed Woz for a comment on this and asked him: “Do you personally see it as elevating this type of object to an art form, or is it more just a valuable historical relic to you?”

Woz said, “Just a rare relic. Every computer before Apple I [ just ] had a front panel…every computer since Apple I had keyboard and video.”

OEM spends $35 million to give up on RIM

One of RIM’s suppliers is spending $35 million to stop making bits for RIM’s Blackberry.

Toronto-based Celestica has announced that it will stop producing hardware for RIM over the next three to six months.

It said that it will cost $35 million to restructure RIM out of its hair once and for all.