"When you make a thing, a thing that is new, it is so complicated making it that it is bound to be ugly. But those that make it after you, they don’t have to worry about making it. And they can make it pretty, and so everybody can like it when others make it after you"
Inside Sony headquarters, at the heart of Tokyo’s Shinagawa district, Yasuhiro Ootori is about to reveal something that almost no one outside the Japanese tech giant has ever seen: the inside of a PlayStation 4.
It’s the middle of October, four weeks before the new game console is due to reach stores in the U.S. and Canada, and Ootori — director of the mechanical engineering team in charge of the PS4 — is surrounded by a phalanx of other Sony engineers, several PR handlers, two journalists, and six guys set to capture the moment on video. Not to mention the interpreter who will instantly translate his commentary into English.
The video producer slaps his hands in front of the two cameras — an imitation of an old movie clapboard — and the Sony man spends the next hour and half taking the console apart, piece by sacred piece. He even wears white gloves. It’s the world’s first PlayStation 4 teardown.
Electronic makers will either publish their own tear downs, or just send stuff in advance to iFixit. What’s inside is becoming more interesting and important to people.
The Finding Ada site has an excerpt up from their women in STEM anthology called A Passion For Science: Tales of Discovery and Invention, which is available here. This excerpt, contributed to the book by Sue Nelson, is about Williamina Fleming who identified and catalogued thousands of stars as well as the Horsehead Nebula which was not “discovered” until years after her death. Her story is truly incredible and inspiring- a must read for anyone interested in astronomy.
Within thirty years of what can only be described as an inauspicious start, Fleming had catalogued over 10,000 stars and had discovered 310 variable stars, 10 novae, 52 nebulae and the hot dense stars known as white dwarfs. Long after her death, when the Hubble Space Telescope unveiled the stunningly beautiful Horsehead Nebula in unprecedented detail, history had already noted that it was Williamina Fleming who had first identified the nebula’s unusual shape.
…She established the first photographic standards of magnitude — an important tool for astronomers — that were then used to measure the brightness of variable stars, whose light fluctuated. She also developed a new Pickering-Fleming system to classify stars by their spectra alphabetically, A, B, C and so on, according to the strength of the star’s hydrogen spectral line.
By 1907 Fleming had been appointed an honorary fellow in astronomy at Jump Cannon’s alma mater and was the first American woman to be elected an honorary member of London’s Royal Astronomical Society. In 1910, Fleming published her discovery of stars that have almost exhausted their nuclear fuel. These small stars have expelled their outer layers, creating a planetary nebula and leaving an extremely dense hot core. They were called white dwarfs because the first few discovered were white.
Below is the Hubble Space Telescope’s picture of the Horsehead Nebula. Read More.
On the evening of October 29, 1969 the first data travelled between two nodes of the ARPANET, a key ancestor of the Internet. Even more important, this was one of the first big trials of a then-radical idea: Networking computers to each other. The men who symbolically turned the key on the connected world we know today were two young programmers, Charley Kline at UCLA and Bill Duvall at SRI in Northern California, using special equipment made by BBN in Cambridge, Massachussetts.
One year ago Hurricane Sandy shut down Adafruit and most of lower Manhattan The hurricane left more than 100 people dead and caused tens of billions of dollars in damage. Adafruit had just moved from our previous location which was basically an apartment to our new factory in Soho, it was a big move for us and a hurricane was not something we expected to deal with. For over one week we did not have power or access to our factory, orders could go out, no inbound shipments, nothing. Each day Ladyada and Phil rode their bikes to check up on the factory from the outside, help others that needed assistance at their old location and document the eerie state Sandy left New York.
Without our customers and community Adafruit would not have been able to make it, thank you everyone who supported us through a very tough time.
Robohub has an extensive list of women in robotics and it is an inspiring read to say the least. The list features incredible women such as Missy Cummings who was one of the Navy’s first female fighter pilots and Leila Takayama, a senior researcher at Google X.
From Hypatia to Grace Hopper, there have been amazing women who have fought against massive prejudice to carve themselves out a name in the fields of science, engineering, mathematics and technology. These comparatively few women however can easily be lost from the pages of history and to create a more equal ongoing presence of women in technology, we need to show strong female role models.
Professionally, the women on our list are all field leaders with a huge impact on robotics, regardless of their gender. So if you need women for your board of directors, or conference panel etc. then you may need to look deeper, because these women are already super busy. But while there are an increasing number of women in robotics, there is nothing like equal representation so – here are 25 reasons why that should change.
PCE.js is a Emscripten browser port of Hampa Hug’s excellent PCE emulator, hacked together by James Friend. This is a demo of PCE’s classic Macintosh emulation, running System 7.0.1 with MacPaint, MacDraw, and Kid Pix.
Recent research proposes augmenting capacitive touch pads with tangible objects, enabling a new generation of mobile applications enhanced with tangible objects, such as game pieces and tangible controllers. In this paper, we extend the concept to capacitive tangibles consisting of multiple parts, such as stackable gaming pieces and tangible widgets with moving parts. We achieve this using a system of wires and connectors inside each block that causes the capacitance of the bottom-most block to reflect the entire assembly. We demonstrate three types of tangibles, called CapStones, Zebra Dials and Zebra Sliders that work with current consumer hardware and investigate what designs may become possible as touchscreen hardware evolves.
My friend Alice made this amazing, from-scratch Ada Lovelace costume, and wrote-up the details on her blog. While attending Shore Leave 35, she won the Best Re-creation Costume prize. I suspect this is only the first of many awards for this great piece of work. Alice, incidentally, is also a professor of Computer Science, making this costume all the more apropos.
In 1842, Ada Lovelace, known as the “enchantress of numbers,” wrote the first computer program.
Fast-forward 171 years to today (which happens to be Ada Lovelace Day, for highlighting women in science, technology, engineering and math), and computer programming is dominated by men.
Women software developers earn 80 percent of what men with the same jobs earn. Just 18 percent of computer science degrees are awarded to women, down from 37 percent in 1985. Fewer than 5 percent of venture-backed tech start-ups are founded by women.
Those statistics, released by Symantec, the security company, and the Anita Borg Institute, which works to recruit and promote women in tech, provide context for recent debates in Silicon Valley, like why Twitter has no women on its board.
Given that girls begin to shy away from computer science when they are young, because of a lack of role models and encouragement from parents and teachers, perhaps a short history lesson on Ms. Lovelace would be helpful….
left to right: Limor, Molly, Risa Rose, Jess, Angel, Erin, Roxanne, Rebecca, Alicia, Becky, Kelly
You may not know who we all are, but the ladies of Adafruit are a big part of what keeps the company running smoothly. There are some familiar faces among us (Limor! Becky! Risa Rose!) but there’s also Angel, Erin, and Rebecca who ship out many of your packages, as well as Jess and Kelly, who answer your support questions. Risa Rose, whose face you have probably seen in many of our tutorials, is also an expert photo retoucher and is the wearable electronics assistant too. Alicia gathers your packages and is an Arduino enthusiast and Leia (not pictured), who just started this October, puts your kits together. Roxanne keeps the books and Molly keeps everything in operations running smoothly (and keeps the FreshDirect order coming so we don’t starve). And of course you are all familiar with Lady Ada herself, Limor Fried, whose fearless leadership and incredible talent bring us here together every day!
This concludes Lady Ada Lovelace Day, the women in our posts today are a reminder that there are makers everywhere and of every kind. We want to take this day to appreciate all the women out there that are advancing themselves and others in STEM fields. Thanks to their dedication, the world is becoming a better place every day.
October 15th is Ada Lovelace Day! Today the world celebrates all of the accomplishments of women in science, art, design, technology, engineering, and math. Each year, Adafruit highlights a number of women who are pioneering their fields and inspiring women of all ages to make their voices heard. Today we will be sharing the stories of women that we think are modern day “Adas”. We will also be referencing women from history that have made impacts in science and math. Please promote and share #ALD13 with your friends and family so we can promote and share with all of the world wide web!
Today everything in the Adafruit store is 10% off, just use the code ALD13 on checkout! Today’s the perfect day to spark the imagination of a future “Ada” with a gift from the Adafruit store!