Posts Tagged ‘which’

Apartment Therapy

Pondělí, Květen 14th, 2012

Sounds like the setup to a joke. Actually, it’s Delos, the organization behind an ultrapricey futuristic condominium development in Greenwich Village that will be completed by the end of this year. All these luminaries have been part of the project.

The building’s amenities make the Jetsons look Amish. Delos pumps vitamin C and aloe into its shower water. It has “posture-supportive” and “heat-reflexology” flooring, to keep you standing up straight, and lighting designed to sync with your circadian rhythms. It has a “wellness concierge,” who will manage all your yoga and acupuncture needs. It’s possible that other apartment buildings offer “sleep gardens,” electromagnetic-free zones, and personalized aromatherapy floated in through the air vents, but certainly none can claim an exclusive partnership with a sleep center at the Cleveland Clinic. Such amenities don’t come cheap. The 8,000-square-foot duplex penthouse, which boasts its own 3,000-square-foot roof deck and solarium, is expected to fetch $40 million.

How did the former stars of the Democratic Party come together with a gaggle of spiritual gurus to create a place where the super-rich can breathe specially- scented air? The man behind Delos is Morad Fareed, a member of the Clinton Global Initiative, which is not where most people in high-end Manhattan real-estate development come from. Fareed, who made his bones at Goldman Sachs, is a proponent of “altruistic capitalism.”

His big idea, branded “wellness real estate,” is to take green architecture’s concern with sustainability and apply it to the inhabitants. “Why stop at building homes that are good for just the environment?” he asks. “Why can’t we take it a step further and build homes, offices, hotels that are good for people?”

“Housing is an extension of our body,” says Chopra, who is on the board of Delos and has served in an advisory capacity as—in his own words—“a conduit to data and information.” He was drawn in by the project’s focus on sustainability and by the concept of “well-being,” which he calls “the No. 1 trend in the world right now.” Richard Sloan, a Columbia University biomedical researcher who was one of a handful who evaluated the science behind Delos, said the building’s most effective design elements, including a 10,000-square-foot garden, involve bringing nature into the living space.

“This is definitely scalable to any price range,” says Gephardt, the former House majority leader, who now runs the lobbying shop Gephardt Government Affairs. “You gotta get started somewhere, and that’s why they started at the end of the spectrum where you can actually get things done.”

Gephardt has incorporated some of the Delos ethos into his own style of living. “I’ve learned a lot about the effects of light on your ability to sleep,” he says. And he’s not the only one who’s been swayed. Bill Clinton took a tour of a Delos loft. According to a source, Google CEO Eric Schmidt is so keen on the Delos innovations he’s been in to see the space twice.

Logitech HD Pro Webcam C920 Review

Pondělí, Duben 23rd, 2012

Billed as the first webcam that actually supports 1080p over Skype and 720p with other video calling services, Logitech’s HD Pro Webcam C920 is the best step you can take if you’re in the market for your first webcam or if it’s been a few years since you’ve purchased your last one. As soon as you plug it in and get a look at how good the picture looks, not just in terms of adjusting for light, but how clear and smooth the motion is, you feel you’ve made an upgrade. When you take it for a real spin and stream content or make a call to somebody and there’s no dip in quality, not much more needs to be said.

Functioning much as a standard webcam ought to, the Logitech C920 boasts some impressive performance, in addition to the Carl Zeiss Tessar lens and 1080p resolution, this camera can take 15 megapixel snapshots, comes complete with two built-in microphones for stereo sound, and a base that can be mounted onto the top of a monitor, laptop, or screwed onto a stable tripod. With all these features, it’s obvious that Logitech created a metaphorical heavyweight, but when you get into the software included, it’s kind of impressive what else you can do.

The Logitech HD Pro Webcam C920 automatically encodes to H.264 as a standard feature, meaning you don’t have to do anything unusual to start recording in HD. Once the discreet and stylish blue LED’s on the sides of the lens light up, you know you’re looking as good as possible.

The included Logitech Vid HD software lets you video conference in case you don’t want to use Skype or Gchat, but also allows for extra fun features like the ability to make a “mask” out of any image file, or to turn your webcam into a security motion detector that will wait for something in the room to move, then start recording until the motion stops. It’s not going to keep your home safe, but as a feature it’s a nice afterthought and can be put to use at home or in the office.

It was using these features that I only experience any problems with the C920, as using masks caused the software to crash several times and required a system reboot before I could attempt to use them again, but it’s not something that I can take serious points off for unless you were hoping to make some rip-off versions of a particularly viral Youtube series about unpleasant fruit.

The picture is stunningly clear, the microphones pick up sound very nicely from a comfortable and natural range and even seem to do a good job of filtering out background noise, meaning that with just this one piece of equipment you can complete any video calling setup or content recording suite.

The Logitech HD Pro Webcam C920 lives up to the “pro” in its name, taking care of any needs an amateur vlogger or parent away on a business trip might have. With virtually no setup besides plug in and go, this is a webcam that’s guaranteed to last for any practical purposes. If you’re trying to shoot a feature film, you might want to go with something a little less consumer-grade, but through the C920, Logitech is offering the best webcam on the market for its price, hands down.

RFID Guides Employees at Company Parking Lots

Čtvrtek, Říjen 13th, 2011

Several Asian companies are installing an RFID-based solution to manage their parking lots that will instruct staff members where to park, help them find available spaces and light their way through the lots during dark days or evenings.

The system, supplied by Taiwanese RFID solutions provider Yoke Int’l-Com Corp.—commonly known as Yoke RFID—employs active RFID tags that can be carried by employees or attached to their vehicles, and is designed to provide not only lighting control and parking instruction, but also access control and historical records of workers’ arrival and departure times.

To date, one firm—which has asked to remain unnamed—has installed the system at its Taipei location, where it has approximately 1,000 spaces in which staff members and visitors can park their cars before entering the office. That solution has been in place since January 2011. About five additional companies intend to install the system in Taiwan and Mainland China by the end of next year, says Wilson Ting, Yoke’s marketing director.

Yoke RFID displayed the technology at its booth at Taitronics 2011, the 37th Taipei International Electronics Trade Show, being held this week.

With the system, a company provides each employee with a battery-powered 2.45 GHz Yoke RFID tag that is approximately the size of a credit card, but measures about one-third inch thick. The tag includes an RFID chip and an antenna, which transmits its proprietary air-interface protocol transmission.

Yoke’s RFID readers, which can interrogate tags at a distance of up to 80 meters, are then installed throughout a parking lot. To make location tracking more precise, the system includes repeaters equipped with both RFID technology and LED lights, which are then mounted above every parking space. Each repeater has a built-in active 2.45 GHz RFID transponder, as well as a blue LED light used to illuminate a parking space.

As an individual arrives at the parking lot at the start of a work shift, a reader located at the lot’s entrance captures the tag’s ID number—which the tag transmits 120 times per minute—and Yoke RFID software forwards that information to data-management software that interprets and stores data culled from every RFID read.

Typically, the user’s software links the tag’s ID number with that person’s ID or name. Yoke RFID can also provide such management software, Ting says, which can sit on a user’s database or on a hosted Web-based server. In the case of the first deployment, at the lot in Taipei, the firm has acquired data-management software from a local Taipei systems integrator.

It doesn’t matter though.

Středa, Srpen 24th, 2011

Since that day, August 18, at least 15 Palestinians have been killed during Israel’s “retaliation” attack on Gaza. One Israeli also died after a rocket slammed into his house in Beer Sheva. A precarious ceasefire has now been called between the two sides but the damage, and the propaganda, is well underway.

Israel, in classic style, is playing on the “terrorist threat” paradigm that has kept it alive and well for so long. Because it claimed that the gunmen originated from Gaza meant this was the story necessarily accepted by the rest of the world, the West in particular. Hamas and the Popular Resistance Committee, which Israel says carried out the attacks, have denied involvement, saying it is not their policy to attack Israel from other countries’ territories.

It doesn’t matter though. As long as Israel says it was Hamas, then it must have been Hamas. Fifteen people, children included, have been killed in the raids, dozens of others injured. And not unlike Qaddafi or Syria’s Bashar Al Assad, Israel’s defense minister Ehud Barak warned that, “Those who operate against us will be decapitated.”

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was no better. “We all witnessed today an attempt to escalate the terrorist war against Israel by launching of attacks from the Sinai,” he said. “If there is someone who thinks that the state of Israel will let this pass, he is mistaken.”

So today, we are back to the unenviable situation we have been in so many times before. Instead of focusing on our legitimate bid for statehood at the United Nations, we now find ourselves fending off more attacks from Israel and defending ourselves against unsubstantiated accusations. The seven Israelis who were killed in the Sinai attacks will be used as pawns in Israel’s war against Palestinian independence. And because the West coddles Israel like no other, it will pay off just like it has in the past.