I hate my long commute to work, but NPR makes it tolerable and this morning hit the jackpot. Its show This I Believe aired a listener commentary by electrical engineer Bill Nunan who talked about his evolving beliefs in God and difficulty in accepting the tenets of traditional religion. To give you a flavor of the commentary called My Personal Leap of Faith, here's an excerpt with which I happen to agree:
"I believe that the fate of our world is not locked in by Scripture, but that the future is shaped by the laws of nature and by what we humans voluntarily do during our time on this planet."
His Scopes-sian commentary is eloquent, concise, courageous and obviously runs counter to what he was taught to believe. My guess is the general population will disagree with him, but that many engineers and scientists could back his ideas. I highly doubt what he believes and the fact he is an engineer are purely coincidental. Certaintly, science and the laws of nature have heavily influenced the beliefs expressed in his commentary. You can listen to it and/or read it at NPR.org
Robots that walk have come a long way from simple barebones walking machines or pairs of legs without an upper body and head. Much of the research these days focuses on making more humanoid robots. But they are not all created equal.
The IEEE Computer Society has named the top 10 trends for 2014. You can expect the convergence of cloud computing and mobile devices, advances in health care data and devices, as well as privacy issues in social media to make the headlines. And 3D printing came out of nowhere to make a big splash.
For industrial control applications, or even a simple assembly line, that machine can go almost 24/7 without a break. But what happens when the task is a little more complex? That’s where the “smart” machine would come in. The smart machine is one that has some simple (or complex in some cases) processing capability to be able to adapt to changing conditions. Such machines are suited for a host of applications, including automotive, aerospace, defense, medical, computers and electronics, telecommunications, consumer goods, and so on. This discussion will examine what’s possible with smart machines, and what tradeoffs need to be made to implement such a solution.