Thursday, January 12, 2012

Future games machines to read your emotions


>>One of Sony’s most striking goals was advanced haptics that can replicate sensations as specific as stroking a cat. “What we have today is solely based on vibration.” Tsuruta-san then envisaged the use of broader sensor technology that might read vital signs, body heat and facial expressions to gauge a player’s emotions and use them in the context of a game.

Sony hints at super-HD, haptic and sensor tech for PS4


>One of the most interesting points regarded haptic technology. E&T reports that the new tech is able to replicate sensations, taking feedback way beyond simple vibration and resistance.

Cable&Wireless Worldwide and Equinix Collaborate to Deliver Cloud-Based Services for Global Enterprises

Singapore — January 12, 2012 — Cable&Wireless Worldwide (LSE: CW.), a global provider of mission critical communications, is collaborating with Equinix Inc. (Nasdaq: EQIX), a provider of global data centre services, to become a one-stop shop for global enterprises that require best-of-breed data centre services.

This collaboration will strengthen C&W Worldwide’s existing cloud capabilities and will be a springboard from which the company will deliver a comprehensive suite of data centre services, such as co-location, managed hosting and cloud computing services to global customers.

Gartner predicts that, by 2015, 50 percent of Global 1000 enterprises will rely on external cloud-computing services for their top 10 revenue-generating processes[1]. C&W Worldwide’s hybrid cloud offering, which brings together the best of managed hosting, multi-tenant and private cloud deployments, will help companies reduce complexity, minimise infrastructure costs and increase business agility. The company already offers a Flexible Computing product in the UK that has been successfully deployed with clients in industries such as facilities management, IT services, media, retail and financial services.

“Telcos are natural providers of enterprise-class infrastructure services. Our ambition is to create an ecosystem of best-of-breed solutions from different service providers that can deliver a flexible and risk free cloud computing roadmap for customers,” said Nick Lambert, managing director, wholesale, mid-markets and global markets, C&W Worldwide.

He added, “Equinix is the ideal company for us to collaborate with because its footprint of data centres closely aligns with our global network. Both companies share a complementary vision to deliver reliable, on-demand services that will enable some of the largest organisations to transit into a world-class cloud computing and communications environment.”

“Our global relationship with Cable&Wireless Worldwide is testament to the value of Platform Equinix™ for enabling network service providers to easily expand their service reach to access new revenue opportunities,” said Samuel Lee, Equinix President, Asia-Pacific. “As part of our growing network ecosystem of more than 680 network service providers, C&W Worldwide has access to our global platform of 99 data centres, while customers have a broad choice of best-in-class network providers to meet their telecommunications needs.”

Enterprise customers can expect a complete approach to service management with a single point of accountability for the company’s network and hosted computing infrastructure. C&W Worldwide and Equinix will help customers deal with the complexities of supporting a geographically diverse operation, so that customers can focus on their core business and respond rapidly to changing market conditions and emerging opportunities.

Additional resources

For more information and best practices for aligning the networks and cloud communities, download and watch the Equinix webinar, “Networks & Clouds: Navigating the Potential” here.

For more information about C&W Worldwide’s Flexible Computing platform, please click here.

[1] Gartner: ‘Emerging Technology Analysis: Cloud Storage and Its Impact on Data Center Transformation’, February 2011

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Samsung confident of outselling Nokia in 2012

from Yahoo:

>>Samsung Electronics Co, the world's biggest technology firm by revenue and the world's No.2 handset maker, is confident of its handset shipments overtaking that of Nokia this year, its chief executive said on Monday.


According to the latest polls by Reuters, Nokia's 2011 handsets were estimated at 418 million versus Samsung's 320 million but it would continue its lead in 2012, although the gap is seen declining to 388 million versus 359 million.

Monday, January 9, 2012

Continental Ensures Better Road Safety with New Control Elements

To help the driver's eyes return to the road more quickly, Continental has integrated haptic signals into touch-sensitive surfaces. At the 2012 Consumer Electronics Show, the company will show how consumer electronics and infotainment are becoming more and more intertwined in vehicles.

LAS VEGAS, Jan. 9, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Consumer Electronics Show -- Modern vehicles are supporting motorists with a growing number of new functions. In this context, Continental, the international automotive supplier, is researching more intuitive, safer and simple control options for motorists. The latest development is the integration of haptic feedback into touch-sensitive surfaces. By this means, the driver is able to sense directly whether he has actually activated a "touch element" after touching it. With its innovations, Continental is supporting automotive manufacturers all over the world with the development of modern human-machine interfaces (HMI). The first series orders underline the promising future of this technology, and at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas in January 2012, Continental will show several applications for touch elements that provide direct feedback to users.

Gaining ground: Touch-sensitive surfaces in cars

Touchscreen smartphones are enjoying increasing popularity as more and more people rely on their simple and intuitive operability. Motorists are also calling for more touch-sensitive surfaces in cars. Products such as secondary displays, large-scale displays in the central console and touchpads are ideal for facilitating driver interaction via adapted and context-related presentation of information. As early as 2014, Continental expects one in six new cars registered in Western Europe, the USA and Japan to be fitted with touchscreens.

More attention to traffic thanks to haptic feedback

"However, it is not possible to simply transfer the concept of touch-sensitive surface operations from the field of consumer electronics into a car exactly as it is," explains Guido Meier-Arendt, an HMI expert at Continental. "Up to now, feedback was received directly through classic control elements such as rotary switches or switches and buttons, the eyes, ears and above all the operating hand whereas touch-sensitive displays in cars were disregarded as an important feedback means." To make the operation of touch elements even safer and more effective for motorists – whose primary task is, after all, to keep their eyes on the road – Continental is focusing on tactile (i.e. haptic) feedback from touch-sensitive surfaces. For example, slight counter-pressure from the display on the driver's finger indicates that an operating step has been performed successfully, making it unnecessary for the driver to look at the screen again.

For the haptic feedback, Continental calculates the exact position of the finger in the touch process. Touch sensors on a purely electrical (capacitive), electromechanical (resistive) or optical (via an infra-red sensor) basis perform this task. They reliably locate the position of the finger to less than a millimeter deviation. Depending on the position identified, a decision is made on how haptic feedback is to be provided. Whether a touch element is actually activated also depends on the operating force, which is calculated via further sensors or through signal processing steps on the basis of existing data. The actuators needed to carry out mechanical movements can generate various types of haptics information within a frequency range of up to 200 hertz and more.

Feedback can be provided in forms ranging from slight counter-pressure to vibration, depending on the respective control concept. This allows different feedback strategies to be implemented which are tailored to the manufacturers' requirements. Series of tests have shown that haptic feedback is accepted much better by motorists than visual or acoustic signals. Continental has also made use of this principle in its Accelerator Force Feedback Pedal (AFFP). Thanks to haptics, the world's first active gas pedal in serial production offers a new possibility to provide imminent danger warnings to motorists directly through the feet, for example.

Ready for serial production – for more safety and pleasure to use

Continental has completed the basic pre-development phase and is now in a position to work on specific implementation for new vehicle models together with automotive manufacturers. "Let's say that the combination of touch-sensitive surfaces and haptic feedback is a tangible innovation, that will provide even better support for motorists," declares Eelco Spoelder, Head of the Instrumentation & Driver HMI division. "Our customers can use this technology to improve safety for passengers, but also to create a kind of magic sensation for the operator due to the haptic feedback."

Continental will showcase a version of this technology during the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, January 8-13, 2012. Continental will host a private hospitality salon during the event, and executives will be on hand for on-site interviews to share additional information about these and other Continental technologies.

With sales of EUR 26 billion in 2010, Continental is among the leading automotive suppliers worldwide. As a supplier of brake systems, systems and components for powertrains and chassis, instrumentation, infotainment solutions, vehicle electronics, tires and technical elastomers, Continental contributes to enhanced driving safety and global climate protection. Continental is also an expert partner in networked automobile communication. Continental currently has approximately 164,000 employees in 45 countries.

SOURCE Continental

Cadillac Contextual Research Drives Innovative Tech Design


>>Among the breakthroughs the CUE team developed: proximity sensing that minimizes the display when not in use; capacitive touch screen with haptic feedback; natural voice recognition; icon-based menu functions with home screen and customizable shortcut menu bars, and a concealed storage compartment behind the user interface. The haptic feedback gives users a pulsing sensation when the select menu items while capacitive touch screen allows for swipe and pinching gestures to move and resize items on the main screen.

Cadillac will offer CUE starting with the new XTS luxury sedan in spring of 2012 and in the ATS compact luxury sedan, followed by the SRX luxury crossover.

CES: GM Wants To Turn Your Car Into An iPhone On Wheels

from Forbes:

>>The Detroit, Michigan-based automaker announced it will debut its new CUE infotainment software on the Cadillac ATS — a new BMW 3-series fighter GM introduced at the Detroit Auto show earlier Sunday.

Short for Cadillac User Experience, CUE is built around an 8-inch touch screen, kind off like an iPad. ”Customers want things that are elegant, intuitive, and simple to use,” Cadillac Global Marketing Director Jim Vurpillat told a crowd of journalists.