For the fifth consecutive year, IBM is the U.S. patents leader. In 1997, IBM received 1,724 U.S. patents from the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office--over 300 more than any other company. The achievement caps a year in which IBM introduced a breakthrough in semiconductor technology with the development of integrated circuits using copper wiring in place of aluminum. Big Blue has more than 50 issued and pending patents relating to the use of copper interconnect technology. IBM also set a record for disk drive storage capacity, breaking the barrier of 10 billion bits of data per square inch. The company also continued to introduce advances in speech recognition, including new Via Voice products for the Chinese and Japanese markets. IBM's 1997 U.S. patent portfolio includes more than 550 software-related patents and over 250 related to network computing. Also in 1997, IBM's Deep Blue supercomputer defeated Garry Kasparov in a chess match that captured worldwide attention, although didn't win the company many friends. For details on these and other technologies, check out IBM's Website at www.ibm.com.
If you see a hitchhiker along the road in Canada this summer, it may not be human. That’s because a robot is thumbing its way across our neighbor to the north as part of a collaborative research project by several Canadian universities.
Stanford University researchers have found a way to realize what’s been called the “Holy Grail” of battery-design research -- designing a pure lithium anode for lithium-based batteries. The design has great potential to provide unprecedented efficiency and performance in lithium-based batteries that could substantially drive down the cost of electric vehicles and solve the charging problems associated with smartphones.
Robots in films during the 2000s hit the big time; no longer are they the sidekicks of nerdy character actors. Robots we see on the big screen in recent years include Nicole Kidman, Arnold Schwarzenegger, and Eddie Murphy. Top star of the era, Will Smith, takes a spin as a robot investigator in I, Robot. Robots (or androids or cyborgs) are fully mainstream in the 2000s.
Focus on Fundamentals consists of 45-minute on-line classes that cover a host of technologies. You learn without leaving the comfort of your desk. All classes are taught by subject-matter experts and all are archived. So if you can't attend live, attend at your convenience.