In his diary, Warhol later wrote, “I said that once some man had been calling me a lot wanting to give me one [a Macintosh], but I’d never called him back or something, and then the kid looked up and said, ‘Yeah, that was me. I’m Steve Jobs.”

Warhol didn’t like the Mac because it was grayscale, and he was all about color - so he preferred the Commodore Amiga. By 1985, he was making stuff like this:

New self-filling water bottle harvests drinking water from the air
Austrian designer Kristof Retezar has invented a new device for your bike that collects the moisture contained in the atmosphere, condenses it and stores it as fresh drinking water.
By Bec Crew

A new self-filling water bottle has been invented that can not only serve as a nifty device for long bike tours and races, but could also offer a new method of fresh water collection in parts of the world where groundwater sources are hard to come by.

Developed by industrial designer Kristof Retezar from Austria’s University of Applied Arts, the new device - called the ‘Fontus’ - works best in humid weather, which allows it to condense the moisture in the air into safe, fresh drinking water. Experiments have shown that under the right weather conditions, it can produce 0.5 Litres of water in just under an hour.

Continue Reading.

Robotics and the law: When software can harm you

Recent headlines declaring “Robot Kills Man in Germany” are examples of growing news coverage about the impact of robots on society. This is the subject of a new law review article by a University of Washington faculty member.

Twenty years in, the law is finally starting to get used to the Internet. Now it is imperative, says Ryan Calo, assistant professor in the UW School of Law, that the law figure out how to deal effectively with the rise of robotics and artificial intelligence.

“Technology has not stood still. The same private institutions that developed the Internet, from the armed forces to search engines, have initiated a significant shift toward robotics and artificial intelligence,” writes Calo in “Robotics and the Lessons of Cyberlaw.” His article, published in June in the California Law Review, is among the first to examine what the introduction of robotics and artificial intelligence means for law and policy.

Robotics, Calo adds, is shaping up to be the next transformative technology of our time: “Courts that struggled for the proper metaphor to apply to the Internet will struggle anew with robotics.”

Though mention of robotics and artificial intelligence can prompt images of unstoppable Terminators and mutinous HAL 9000 computers, Calo dismisses such drama early on. “And yet,” he adds, “the widespread distribution of robotics in society will, like the Internet, create deep social, cultural, economic and of course legal tensions” long before any such sci-fi-style future.

To Calo, robotics is essentially different than the Internet and so will raise different legal issues.

“Robotics combines, for the first time, the promiscuity of data with the capacity to do physical harm,” Calo writes. “Robotic systems accomplish tasks in ways that cannot be anticipated in advance, and robots increasingly blur the line between person and instrument.”

But does that mean robotics and artificial intelligence need different treatment under the law, or different laws entirely, than the technologies of which they are made, such as computers?

In the paper and a 2014 article in Slate on the same subject, Calo relates an anecdote about Chicago judge and law professor Frank Easterbrook, who in 1996 famously likened research in Internet law to studying “the law of the horse.” Easterbrook felt any single approach is doomed to “be shallow and to miss unifying principles.” Calo quotes science fiction writer Cory Doctorow, who in a response to Calo wrote in The Guardian that he could not think of a legal principle applicable to robots that would not also be usefully applied to the computer, and vice versa.

“I disagreed with Easterbrook then and I disagree with Doctorow now,” Calo writes. “Robotics has a different set of essential qualities than the Internet, which animate a new set of legal puzzles.”

Calo’s conclusion is, in a sense, a follow-up to his 2014 call for the creation of a federal robotics commission: Robotics and artificial intelligence, he finds, have essentially different qualities than the law has yet faced.

“So I join a chorus of voices, from Bill Gates to the White House, to assume that robotics represents an idea whose time has come. The qualities, and the experiences they generate, occasion a distinct catalogue of legal and policy issues that sometimes do, and sometimes do not, echo the central questions of contemporary cyberlaw.”

Calo, whom Business Insider named one of the most important people working in robotics, concludes, “Cyberlaw will have to engage, to a far greater degree, with the prospect of data causing physical harm, and to the line between speech and action. Rather than think of how code controls people, cyberlaw will think of what people can do to control code.”

Calo’s recent paper has already attracted commentary from a fellow legal scholar, Yale Law School’s Jack. M. Balkin, who calls it a valuable discussion: “Calo’s account of the problems that robotics present for law is just terrific, and I believe it is destined to be the starting point for much future research in the area.”

anonymous asked:

Do you have advice for writing modern fantasy and incorporating modern technology into magical adventures?

This isn’t so much as advice as it is a reference: check out this series called the Iron Fey by Julie Kagawa. She gives a very interesting outlook on the mixing of modern day technology and fantasy/magic and is the only one I’ve seen of its kind.

As for real advice though: it’s kind of a toss up of how you want to go about it. There hasn’t been any big hit fantasy novels that address the modern technology thing, especially since the modern age of so much technology has hit, so it is up to the modern-raised generation of writers to use the chance to address that. You write the “rules,” because as of now, there aren’t any! 


anonymous asked:

What's your opinion on the surface 3 with using it academically ? Does it work fine for what you like it to do or do you wish it had different components to it ? I'm just wondering because I'm looking into getting a laptop for school and I was interested in it

I really like using it. It’s easy to type on, and I have all of the apps/programs that I need for my note taking. There’s a PDF drawing app that came pre-installed that seems especially useful for students. You can write using the pen, and the tablet will convert it to typed text. It can record lectures, while you type your notes; later on, you can click a section of the notes and it will play the relevant section of the recoding.

This is a really good guide to what students can do with a surface 3.