Startup: 躁鬱病

Japan has long been associated with advanced robotics; however, there was also a not-so-advanced robotics phase, before the second World War. For example, this picture (from 1932) features Yasutaro Mitsui with what appears to be an early prototype for Marvin from the BBC’s televised Hitchiker’s guide to the Galaxy. […]


Startup: Everyone Flap Your Arms!

The post engineerd did on Friday really triggered a tidbit in my memory about one of the most amazing feats from the Second World War. As I discovered while I was refreshing my memory on the details, it was actually featured quite prominently in the movie Pearl Harbor, which I have not seen because I generally hate movies. I am of course referring to the legendary Doolittle Raid, which was the first American assault on Japanese soil during World War II. This raid was launched from the American aircraft carrier USS Hornet (CV-8) on April 18, 1942.

Continue reading Startup: Everyone Flap Your Arms!

User Input

User Input: Grasping For Headlines

I had CNN on in the background while eating breakfast on Sunday, and with no discernible volume I could only use what I could read on the screen to divine what it was they were talking about. Taken out of context, the headline on the bottom of the screen read “CRISIS IN […]

Mobile Aps

Smartphone Aps – Earthquake trackers

A world connected

Spaceship Earth, a rocky place

The recent events in Japan are nothing if not frightening, heartbreaking and tragic.

Many of us have friends, loved ones and/or colleagues in 日本 (Nihon), and nearly all of us interact with their technology and culture on a regular basis in one form or another. I myself have numerous personal connections to Japan, which makes the recent events in that wonderful country strike home and tear at the heart.

With all the sensational coverage on destructive earthquakes, volcanoes, sleeping super-volcanoes and tsunamis over the last several years, we are often reminded of the sheer power our planet contains, and how our attempts to control it are ultimately futile. Mother Nature has the last word; we had better be listening.

Having lived in two of the most seismically active places on earth, both Japan and Hollister Ca, it is amazing how suddenly the world can go crazy. For those who live in the ring of fire, it is more than just an evening news story, it’s very real.

Last year I installed the Android Ap “Earthquake!” by Retro Meier on my smartphone, which uses real-time USGS data to plot and notify the user of seismic activity from all over the world. Continue reading Smartphone Aps – Earthquake trackers