U.S. military forces in Iraq and Afghanistan have been making use of a tiny, tossable robot for recon and observation for several years, and now--thanks to a decision handed down by the FCC--law enforcement and firefighters can deploy the hardy little ‘bot, known as the Recon Scout Throwbot.
After a bitter five year debate, the Federal Communications Commission is expected to pass a set of net neutrality rules at a meeting today that draw a stark distinction between wireline and wireless internet, scoring a measured victory for net neutrality advocates but spelling uncertainty for the future of the web. On the one hand, traditional hard-line internet providers will be prohibited from blocking or reducing access to any sites or applications.
911 has been very slow to respond to improvements in technology, sometimes to the detriment of its service. Smartphones, carried everywhere by millions of Americans, have sophisticated tracking, communication, and multimedia capabilities which lie largely untapped by 911. Today, the FCC announced plans to update 911 to allow for texting, as well as other tools like streaming video and MMS.
Humans make terrible drivers. Research shows we’re panic-prone, unpredictable and slow to react behind the wheel. Now a new breed of robot cars promises to eliminate human error for safer roads, less traffic and major fuel savings
By Lawrence UlrichPosted 04.11.2010 at 1:07 pm 0 Comments
Step One: Prove Robot Cars Can Handle the Worst
This fall, a driverless Audi TTS will attempt to race up Pikes Peak. If a robot can ace this harrowing mountain run, your daily commute could be next
When an Audi TTS roars to the summit of Pikes Peak in Colorado later this year, it will rumble over 12.4 dusty miles, navigating 156 hairpin turns at up to 90 mph, a speed only a pro racer would attempt. Yet Audi won’t have to hire one: The TTS will make the perilous ascent without a human at the wheel.
As part of its grand new plan, the FCC is making a major push to involve and inform the public. RSS feeds, a blog, and a Twitter account have all made relatively recent appearances, along with a home broadband speed test. To better help the public understand the current frequency allocations, the FCC has also rolled out several great new interactive tools on their website for "reviewing how spectrum bands are allocated and for what uses, and who holds licenses and in what areas."
Today the Federal Communications Commission unveiled its plan to expand broadband Internet access to 100 million more Americans within the next five years. The plan calls both for the expansion of wired networks in under-serviced areas, and for the dedication of more wireless spectrum for Internet use as opposed to television. Largely deficit-neutral, the plan has bipartisan support in the current Congress, in part because contentious issues of net neutrality and privacy were not tackled by the FCC's plan. As you remember, PopSci called for an improvement to the nation's broadband infrastructure last year
When TV went digital, Verizon, AT&T and other cellphone carriers shelled out a combined $19 billion for some of the freed-up airwaves, known as white spaces. Now wireless company Spectrum Bridge is using the parts that are still unclaimed to deliver high-speed Internet from its broadcast tower to your laptop computer.
Besides world peace and a visit from the Publishers Clearing House van, the one thing I want in life is an always-on Internet connection—and, I want it affordably. More specifically, I want always accessible, reasonably priced, quick and dependable wireless Internet. After all, my broadband connection through the cable company is technically always on, but it's worthless once I walk out of the house. It stands to reason, then, that only a mobile provider will ever be capable of fulfilling this wish.
It dawned on me while on vacation recently that I actually already have what I've always wanted. The problem is that it's a last-generation definition of what Internet access is and needs to be.
No less than the open freedom of the Internet is at stake in the war over net neutrality. Now FCC chairman Julius Genachowski has waded into the fray with two new proposals and a clear message: an open and nondiscriminatory Internet is a must for the future.
That stance emerged today in Genachowski's address at the Brookings Institute in Washington. He laid out problems such as the limited competition among ISPs, the economic incentives for ISPs to sell bundled phone and TV service with Internet, and the burden of growing Internet traffic that puts pressure back on ISPs.