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Spectrum, IEEE

Issue 2 • Date Feb. 2009

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Displaying Results 1 - 25 of 37
  • [Front cover - IEEE Spectrum]

    Page(s): C1
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    Freely Available from IEEE
  • Table of contents

    Page(s): 1 - 3
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    Freely Available from IEEE
  • Coming of Age in Fiji

    Page(s): 4
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    Freely Available from IEEE
  • Contributors

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    Freely Available from IEEE
  • The 21st-Century Engineer

    Page(s): 7
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    In the popular imagination, all engineers are Dilbert: socially stunted idiot savants who sit in cubicles all day, fiddling with numbers on a computer. Part of the problem is that the gulf between technologists and the general public has never been greater. As technologies have become sophisticated to the point of boggling the mind, mainstream press outlets, particularly in the West, have reacted mostly by marginalizing thoughtful technology coverage. View full abstract»

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  • Forum

    Page(s): 8
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    Freely Available from IEEE
  • Technology vs. Pirates

    Page(s): 9 - 10
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    Over the past few months, the popular image of pirates has morphed from drunken swashbuckler to Somali bandit, as raiders in the Gulf of Aden, off the Indian Ocean, have brazenly taken on larger targets¿like the oil tanker Sirius Star-and more of them. During the first nine months of 2008, there were more than 120 pirate attacks off East Africa, compared with 60 in 2007 and 13 in 2004, according to the International Maritime Organization. Military missions haven¿t succeeded at stemming piracy so far, but could there be a technological fix? View full abstract»

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  • Relief for Digital Relics

    Page(s): 10
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    When archaeologists swap tales from the field, they tend to use hand-drawn images of relics. But hand drawings can be time-consuming, expensive, and rife with error. View full abstract»

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  • Commercial Communications Satellites for the Moon

    Page(s): 11
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    NASA is planning to rely on commercial communications and navigation services to support missions to the moon in the next decade, say engineers at Johnson Space Center, in Houston. The network, consisting of moon-orbiting satellites and ground stations on Earth, would initially serve robotic lunar missions by NASA, other governments, and private ventures. It would expand to provide 70 percent of the communication requirements for human space missions by the end of 2020, according to NASA documents. View full abstract»

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  • Nano-dreadlocks

    Page(s): 11
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    Harvard University scientists admit being distracted by the appearance of the helical nanometer-scale bristles they've made. View full abstract»

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  • Robocopters Unite!

    Page(s): 12
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    The meter-long helicopters lined up under the fluorescent lab lights at the Berlin Technical University might look like overgrown toys, but they've got a little more under the hood. These are flying robots. They take off, land, and scout terrain autonomously and are being wired to deploy ad hoc communications sensor networks. And unlike any other robocopters, they can work together. View full abstract»

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  • Cellular Kung-fu Grip

    Page(s): 14
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    Researchers at Johns Hopkins University have developed 700¿micrometer metallic grippers that can be remotely triggered to clench. View full abstract»

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  • Bailouts for Memory Makers

    Page(s): 14
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    Pity the makers of memory. Prices for DRAM, the principal memory in computers, have fallen more than 80 percent in the last two years, dropping below cost. View full abstract»

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  • Cellphones for Science

    Page(s): 16
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    Being at the right place with a camera phone can make anyone an amateur reporter nowadays. How about turning cellphone users into amateur scientists? Cellphones can take pictures, record sounds, reveal location, and even measure temperature and sense light. And they are everywhere-there are more than 260 million subscribers in the United States alone. So cellphones seem an ideal tool for collecting research data, according to Eric Paulos, assistant professor at Carnegie Mellon University's Human-Computer Interaction Institute, in Pittsburgh. View full abstract»

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  • The Effect Effect

    Page(s): 22
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    Scientists and technologists have long used the word effect-as in the Doppler effect, the butterfly effect, and the greenhouse effect-to good effect. In fact, effect has been so, uh, effective at naming things that it has branched out into the mainstream. View full abstract»

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  • Managing your Boss

    Page(s): 17
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    You've often told your colleagues, "If those guys upstairs knew what we know down here, they'd do things completely differently." Now here's your chance. Your boss brings you to a meeting with a bunch of C-level executives. Instead of just throwing you a technical question or two, the executives ask you to tell them what you think, their questions moving further and further from your areas of expertise. The CEO is listening to you attentively, your boss is watching you warily, but all you can think about is the bead of sweat forming on your forehead. Your dream moment is about to turn into your worst nightmare. What should you do? View full abstract»

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  • The Doodlemeister

    Page(s): 17
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    Discusses designs of webmaster, Dennis Hwang. View full abstract»

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  • Fouling Our Own Net [review of "Future of the Internet and How to Stop It" (Zittrain, J.; 2008)]

    Page(s): 18 - 19
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    Freely Available from IEEE
  • Dumb and Dumber [Review of "The Dumbest Generation: How the Digital Age Stupifies Young Americans and Jeopardizes Our Future, Or Don't Trust Anyone Under 30" (Bauerlein, M.; 2008)]

    Page(s): 19
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  • Where Rap and Physics Collide [YouTube Rap Video Review]

    Page(s): 19
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    Who says rap and particle theory don't mix? A YouTube rap-video tour of the Large Hadron Collider by European Organization for Nuclear Research staff science writer Kate McAlpine, 23, [below, right] drew more than 3.5 million views in September, the month that it-and the supercollider-debuted. "Besides the fun of making a physics rap, I wanted something with good science content and no swear words, so teachers could use it in their classrooms," McAlpine says. View full abstract»

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  • Strategic Patenting

    Page(s): 20
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    Every day high-tech companies receive offers for "strategic patenting" and "patent mapping" services and "comprehensive patent analysis platforms." What exactly are these things? The idea is simple. Instead of handling patent problems ad hoc, you devise a strategic plan-that is, one that establishes priorities so that you can jettison patents and filings not worth pursuing and defend yourself against the patents of others. You consider all the associated profits and losses comprehensively, as you would with finance or real estate. View full abstract»

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  • Polaroid 2.0

    Page(s): 21
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    It's a nice party trick to pull the new Polaroid PoGo out of your purse and start printing out sticky-backed cellphone pictures. And it's as easy as can be: To go from staring at a closed package to holding a wallet-size photo of my dog and her new Christmas toy took five minutes. View full abstract»

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  • Scientific Sages

    Page(s): 21
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    You'd think it would be the religious leaders and philosophers who had a handle on the existential, but of the 175 people that director Roger Nygard interviewed for his upcoming documentary. View full abstract»

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  • Dream jobs 09 special report

    Page(s): 23
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    What's the difference between a good job and a dream job? Just ask the 10 technologists in this year's Dream Jobs report. Working on an assembly line, Shannon Bruzelius knew what a dream job wasn't. He also knew what his dream job was: making really cool toys. Hundreds of phone calls later, he landed it. That's not to say that a dream job can't fall into your lap: Philippe Lauper was asked to oversee the building of a solar-powered plane that will circle the globe. His reply? Yes! View full abstract»

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  • Marco Migliari Studio Virtuoso

    Page(s): 24 - 25
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    Marco Migliari steps into the vast recording studio and shuts a heavy metal door behind him. Silence fills the cavernous space where Peter Gabriel, Van Morrison, Coldplay, and Robert Plant have all taken their turns behind the microphone. "I like this sort of steadiness, the quietness of the studio," Migliari says. "It's kind of waiting for something to happen." View full abstract»

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Aims & Scope

IEEE Spectrum Magazine, the flagship publication of the IEEE, explores the development, applications and implications of new technologies.

Full Aims & Scope

Meet Our Editors

Editor-in-Chief
Susan Hassler
IEEE Spectrum Magazine