Mercury Rising 鳯女

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Archive for the ‘technology’ Category

US wages match India’s

Posted by Charles II on August 17, 2010

James Lamont and Joe Leahy of FT report that it now costs as much to hire someone in a US call center as in an Indian one. The owners of Indian call centers are now threatening to replace their workers with Americans. Suresh Vaswani, who is co-CEO of Wipro, says that his workforce will increase from 39% non-Indian to 50% non-Indian.

How much further can this farce run before the American people understand that they’re being taken advantage of?

Posted in abuse of power, capitalism as cancer, financial crisis, India, technology | 5 Comments »

The Storage Problem

Posted by Charles II on July 13, 2010

Via Paul Kedrowsky, Donald R. Sadoway at MIT on Liquid Metal Batteries. This is a possible solution to one of the problems of renewables: intermittency. Personally, I think that there are better approaches (e.g., storage as heat, e.g., superconducting loops) but the great thing about science is that any path can prove to be the industrially practicable one.

MIT has a website devoted to public lectures. Not sure I’ll listen to Thomas Friedman.

Posted in renewable energy, science and medicine, technology | 3 Comments »

I Am Impressed

Posted by Phoenix Woman on October 10, 2009

Taking a quick break from this blog’s trying to save a nation from corporafascism (which nation, I will leave up to you), I just wanted to let you all know that I love the fact that my 8GB flash drive made it through my washer and dryer and still works like a charm. (I’d tell you the brand, but I don’t want the FCC coming after me for illicit quid pro quo or whatever.)

Try that with any other digital storage medium!

Posted in computers and software, Good Things, technology | 16 Comments »

The Sublime And The Ridiculous

Posted by Phoenix Woman on June 11, 2009

The sublime:

Michigan gets a polysilicon plant, poised to supply silicon to solar cell makers

Minnesota farmers working with Juhl to supply wind power to rural areas

The ridiculous (if not obscene):

Conservatives like Glenn Beck refuse to admit that the Holocaust Museum murder was one of them

Posted in rightwing moral cripples, solar, technology, wind power | Comments Off on The Sublime And The Ridiculous

The H-1B Program

Posted by Phoenix Woman on May 1, 2009

Boo hoo hoo, American banks that took bailout money must be forced to — GASP! — hire Americans first, rather than the cheaper H-1B workers whose labor they’ve been exploiting for years.

The H-1B program needs to be reformed, if not eliminated altogether. Right now the H-1Bs are little more than indentured servants, allowed to stay in America only to work for a single company, and only so long as they are employed by that company. Which doesn’t help the H-1Bs or the American workers whose jobs they take, but it sure benefits the CEOs. As recently as March of 2008, when the economy was already showing signs of stress (and when Microsoft was seeing the full bitter flowering of the poisoned fruit that was Vista), Bill Gates was asking Congress for more H-1B visas.

Posted in computers and software, financial crisis, industry, infrastructure, technology | 3 Comments »

Fun Things To Do With An iPod

Posted by Phoenix Woman on April 28, 2009

From via Hack a Day: Learn how to turn your iPod into a GPS. (That is, if you’ve got a Nemerix GPS chip to stick on the iPod’s circuit board — though presumably other chips should work as well.)

Posted in technology | Comments Off on Fun Things To Do With An iPod

Free Dictionary For Your iPhone

Posted by Phoenix Woman on April 10, 2009

Or for your iPod touch, as the case may be:


Looks pretty nifty.

Posted in Good Things, technology | 1 Comment »

Tuesday Morning News Roundup

Posted by Phoenix Woman on March 31, 2009


— Still no Election Contest Court ruling in the Franken-Coleman contest as of this morning. They’ve been at it for over two weeks now. What could be the problem? [UPDATE: They hear and obey!]

— Speaking of the Franken-Coleman contest, Eric Boehlert notes that the same media that was viciously attacking Al Gore for being a “sore loser” in 2000 is being nice as pie to Norm Coleman even though his actions have been far more sore-loserish — and have been far more time-consuming — than Gore’s ever were.

— In more pleasant news, Skype has come to the iPhone. Glorious.

Posted in 111th Congress, 2008, Al Franken, Al Gore, GOP/Media Complex, media, Media machine, mediawhores, Minnesota, Norm Coleman, technology | 2 Comments »

The iPhone 3.0: Why It Will Rule

Posted by Phoenix Woman on March 18, 2009

As Philip Elmer-DeWitt says (after listing several new features – including cut/copy/paste and Flash – that are slated to come to the iPhone):

Owners of competing smartphones snicker when they read these lists; Microsoft’s (MSFT) Windows Mobile and Research in Motion’s (RIMM) BlackBerry have had many of these features for years. According to one report, Apple’s primary motivation for introducing the improvements now is to head off competition from the forthcoming Palm (PALM) Pre.

But what none of the competing smartphones have is an SDK that’s as easy to use as Apple’s or an App Store that makes marketing and distributing applications so painless — and profitable.

This is why the iPhone is going to win out. That, and having a touch screen instead of a physical keyboard. They don’t have to spend millions retooling every six months when a new model comes out.

Posted in technology, Uncategorized | Comments Off on The iPhone 3.0: Why It Will Rule

Christmas Eve News Roundup

Posted by Phoenix Woman on December 24, 2008


The cost of conventional silicon solar cells is set to drop slightly next year, thanks to a marked decrease in the cost of the silicon used to make them.

— Speaking of renewable energy: Venezuela, a nation known for its vast oil reserves, is getting into wind power with a 100-megawatt wind farm facility. Construction is set to commence by this time next year.

— Want solar heat and hot water, but live in a cold climate? Evacuated-tube technology is the way to go. It makes use of even cloudy-day sun and is good down to minus 40 degrees F. below. They cost twice as much as conventional solar panels, but need far less space, which may be a good trade-off for urban dwellers with limited roof space. The other downsides are that it doesn’t work during the evening, and that the heat energy isn’t stored as electricity, but in the water itself — and even with insulated tanks this energy dissipates after a few days without sun, so it’s probably not an option for polar climates or as your sole source of heat or hot water.

— And on another note, American scientists are giving rave reviews to Obama’s science team.

Posted in Barack Obama, climate change, energy, environment, science and medicine, solar, technology, Venezuela, wind power | 1 Comment »

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