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Old 2013-05-16, 12:13   #1
jasong
 
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"Jason Goatcher"
Mar 2005

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Default What's you dream device?

I know everyone has their own idea of what would be an optimal technological device. It can be anything you want, but don't have. But it has to be something that's at least technically creatable according to the laws of physics. Different people have different views about what's possible, and I don't have any mod powers, so I guess it's sort of silly for me to try to make a rule, lol.

My device relates to the paperless office. I've never had an office job, but the idea of a truly paper-less office, and on a wide scale in most offices, sort of tickles me in the places that I want to be tickled.(sorry for the mental image)

The reason I'm so excited at the moment is that I think the necessary components will arrive in the next decade. We already have E-Ink screens with a somewhat limited ability to write on them, but they're stiff, expensive and kind of heavy. But the technologies necessary to tie together all the attributes of regular paper and then add to them, because it has to be better than paper to truly convince people to switch, are coming together.

Recently, I saw a video of a bendable black and white screen that could be written on, but it was also aware of other versions of itself. So you could make copies of a document simply by doing a bit of tapping on other sheets of paper. So no more making extra copies you don't need and wasting paper. It could send an email with an additional tap, and you could bring up a file on one piece of paper and attach it to an email started on another piece of paper. Each piece of paper is semi-autonomous, so you could let someone borrow your paper and give you a different one later to pay you back. You could put it on the refrigerator to track a family's comings and goings, and you could even use it to make a grocery list and remove items as you buy them.

Editing is normally a chore, we have computers, but sometimes you want to write something in the margins and not in the main document. With this paper you could write something in the margins and then later erase and update without having to worry about wearing out the paper. You could insert information in a handwritten document as if the handwriting was regular computer text.

The only problem I could see is if you wanted to lock a document as evidence of something being written at a certain time. I suppose there could be a way created to attach a permanent time-stamp to a document, but I'm not sure about how it could be implemented.

Well, I've jabbered long enough, what's your perfect technology?
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Old 2013-05-16, 13:14   #2
Mini-Geek
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"Tim Sorbera"
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jasong View Post
The only problem I could see is if you wanted to lock a document as evidence of something being written at a certain time. I suppose there could be a way created to attach a permanent time-stamp to a document, but I'm not sure about how it could be implemented.
Encrypted signatures and/or trusted timestamping could be used on whatever sort of digital format is used for your electronic paper.
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Old 2013-05-16, 20:36   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jasong View Post
Recently, I saw a video of a bendable black and white screen that could be written on, but it was also aware of other versions of itself. So you could make copies of a document simply by doing a bit of tapping on other sheets of paper.
:-D

That's very close to the electronic paper I described to some folks twenty years ago. (Not my original idea; I'd read the concept elsewhere and was just passing it on.)
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Old 2013-05-16, 20:43   #4
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Here's a technology I imagined in high school math class:

Device to create 3-D images in mid-air for math instruction. Glowing lines and such ...

Curves that one could modify by reaching out to "pinch and move", with automatic adjustment of corresponding equations and such at the side.

Show how a parabola and associated equation could have two, one or zero x-intercepts, by stretching it up and down so students see how it's all related. Etc., etc., etc. ...

Last fiddled with by cheesehead on 2013-05-16 at 20:45
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Old 2013-05-16, 20:58   #5
chalsall
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cheesehead View Post
Here's a technology I imagined in high school math class:

Device to create 3-D images in mid-air for math instruction. Glowing lines and such ...

Curves that one could modify by reaching out to "pinch and move", with automatic adjustment of corresponding equations and such at the side.
Trivial to implement with today's technology. It's done every day in "3D Theaters" and relatively inexpensive home gaming solutions. (Special glasses must be worn, of course.)

For some reason, "gaming" and "entertainment" seems to be more important now-a-days than education....
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Old 2013-05-16, 21:16   #6
cheesehead
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chalsall View Post
Trivial to implement with today's technology.
Less obvious in 1966.

Quote:
For some reason, "gaming" and "entertainment" seems to be more important now-a-days than education....
Don't diss gaming.

http://www.colloquium2012-2.us.mensa.org/

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Explore the social and societal aspects of gaming

Explore the evolving world of social gaming and how gender issues are changing how games are developed. Learn about the gamification of society and how organizations are turning to social games for marketing and fund raising. Discover how the five dimensions of game addiction might relate to your experiences. Hear about the history and development of video games from one of the "rock stars" of the industry.

As a Mensa Foundation-sponsored event, Colloquium annually provides Mensans and the public alike the opportunity to gather with industry experts and researchers to dig deeper into socially relevant topics. Past and current topics include the impact of the arts, gifted children, biosafety, consciousness, humor and climate change.

Instead of focusing on the specifics of individual games or the latest releases at the July 2012 event, Colloquium 2012.2 will consider the bigger issues: what our societal obsession with electronic gaming says about us, how we got to this point and what the future could bring. We're confident the program will include topics โ€” and renowned speakers โ€” you've never seen collected into one forum in any other venue. You are cordially invited to be there when we delve into this multi-billion-dollar industry and find out why we play the games we play.
http://www.region3.us.mensa.org/conn...colloquium.htm

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American Mensa - Region 3



Quick Links
Annual Events



American Mensa Foundation's
Colloquium 2011


Electronic Gaming
And Its Impact on Society


February 18, 2011 - February 20, 2011
Austin, Texas
Learn about the history and future of gaming
and related societal issues, including the positive
and negative perceptions and the impact of the
medium on our society.
Hotel:
Omni Austin Hotel at Southpark
4140 Governorโ€™s Row
Austin, Texas 78744
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Room rate is $119 for singles and doubles.
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Registration:
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$199 if postmarked by December 31, 2010
$249 thereafter

print the flyer or register online
Your registration includes:
Friday dinner and Saturday lunch and dinner
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Old 2013-05-17, 17:48   #7
Stargate38
 
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My dream device is made from the following:

1. An HD with MM127 bytes, yet it could fit into a human hand (maybe quantum-based).
2. A bug-free 65536-bit operating system (OS) based on Puppy Linux
3. A 1 Yottahertz 512-core CPU (preferably Intel)
4. An infinitely powerful RAM, capable of holding all the digits of Graham's Number.
5. An indestructable frame to house all the above, as well as the motherboard.

I could hook up any compatible monitor to that.

Last fiddled with by Stargate38 on 2013-05-17 at 17:49 Reason: Monitor info
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Old 2013-05-17, 18:00   #8
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A smartphone-like device that can be resized/morphed at will. E.g. it could be stretched to the size of a large TV, a tablet, or a phone, and could be morphed to have multiple screens or a keyboard (with physical keys; no tactile-less surfaces, please) and mouse. It's also very lightweight, and has a battery that lasts for weeks between charges (and it charges automatically any time I'm near a power source, including the sun). To give it the feel of weight where helpful (e.g. prevent it from blowing away when it's a TV, or feeling too light as a mouse), it uses something to stay put when you want it to (suction? artificial gravity?).

And it has the computing power of Stargate38's device, or the most power that the laws of physics support in a device like this.

While I don't expect such technology any time soon, I don't think it violates any laws of physics. And it would be so awesome!

Last fiddled with by Mini-Geek on 2013-05-17 at 18:02
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Old 2013-05-21, 13:26   #9
jasong
 
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with physical keys; no tactile-less surfaces, please.
I don't know the official term for the technology, but I call them blister keys, because they blister up from a flat surface. The technology is being worked on at the moment. No idea if it'll make it to retail. I believe the keys have to be installed at the factory, so you can't alter their location once they're placed, even though you can make them appear and disappear whenever you want.
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Old 2013-05-21, 17:18   #10
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My personal dream device (IT related), well perhaps slighly off topic, but:
http://www.mersenneforum.org/showpos...&postcount=158
A working 3dfx Voodoo 5 6000

Oliver

Last fiddled with by TheJudger on 2013-05-21 at 17:18
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Old 2013-05-21, 18:51   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jasong View Post
I know everyone has their own idea of what would be an optimal technological device. It can be anything you want, but don't have. But it has to be something that's at least technically creatable according to the laws of physics.
I would like to have an alchemist's engine.

To be more precise, something which could rearrange the distributions of nucleons of substances placed within it. To abide within the laws of physics, energy might have to be added or removed from the device but, with careful design, two or more reactions could be chosen such that the exothermic reactions of one or more processes (3H -> 3He for instance) exactly balance the energy requirements of (an) other(s), such as 56Fe -> 197Au.

Producing gold from iron is rather futile from an industrial point of view, but being able to generate energy by fission/fusion to iron would be rather useful, as would be the production of copious quantities of free neutrons, positrons (by inverse beta decay of appropriately chosen nuclei) and isotopes which would otherwise be rather expensive to make in large quantities.
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