Barely 5 min into his opening keynote speech at NIWeek, Tim Dehne paused to ask how many attendees had all 10 of the T-shirts given away at past conferences. A few hands went up. Dehne, NI's senior vice president of R&D, even found one attendee who was wearing the first one, which gives the top-10 reasons for attending NIWeek. Though rumors of the T-shirts going up for auction on eBay abound, they have in reality become collectors' items that are truly priceless—since no one seems to have heard of anyone actually paying for a vintage shirt. "It's more a badge of honor that you've been here for years," says Kyle Voosen, vision product manager at NI. In addition to T-shirts, this year's attendees also got small badges with a blank space for proud wearers to enter the version of LabView that they started with. Co-founder Jeff Kodosky bested everyone, putting Version 0.0 on his badge. Go to http://rbi.ims.ca/3855-548 to view the full collection (almost) of NIWeek T-shirts.
The Beam Store from Suitable Technologies is managed by remote workers from places as diverse as New York and Sydney, Australia. Employees attend to store visitors through Beam Smart Presence Systems (SPSs) from the company. The systems combine mobility and video conferencing and allow people to communicate directly from a remote location via a screen as well as move around as if they are actually in the room.
An MIT research team has invented what they see as a solution to the need for biodegradable 3D-printable materials made from something besides petroleum-based sources: a water-based robotic additive extrusion method that makes objects from biodegradable hydrogel composites.
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.