Cisco’s Telepresence conferencing system is as close to being there without being there. The highly-touted (and expensive at $300,000 a pop) technology is prety amazing. Voices are in synch with the video. The folks on either side of the table are life size and natural. Even the conference table in one room melds into the three large plasma screens where you fellow but remote conferees are sitting. I had a chance to demo TelePresense, primary developer of whom is Michael Dhuey, a DN 2007 Engineer of the Year finalist. It’s amazingly natural. Your eyes follow those of the folks on the screens just as if they were in room. One conferee in San Jose (I was in Cisco’s Chicago office) asked me if I had been house painting. Indeed, I had, he picking up a small speck of white paint on my right hand. The only wierd thing is that I felt as if I was being watched. Indeed I was, but that’s something I could get over quickly. Check out the demo.
Better yet, the DN cover story in our October 22 issue about Telepresence, which is getting a lot of attention. The potential for this technology with dispersed engineering teams is enormous (hence, our statement on the cover "how to get back at the airlines"), but what do you think?
Biomimicry has already found its way into the development of robots and new materials, with researchers studying animals and nature to come up with new innovations. Now thanks to researchers in Boston, biomimicry could even inform the future of electrical networks for next-generation displays.
Clean diesel continues to be the fuel of choice for transportation authorities in major U S cities, in spite of competitive options aimed at reducing emissions, according to a nonprofit agency that represents diesel engine and equipment manufacturers.
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