Golden Fall: Dreamlike Moments of Pleasure

Golden Fall: Dreamlike Moments of Pleasure

Golden Fall is a wonderful inspirational documentary short film by Miles Peterson, which captures spectacular fall colors in dreamlike moments of pleasure. Music is Flumina by Fennesz and Sakamoto.

Golden Fall: Dreamlike Moments of Pleasure

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After Almost 150 Years, Denver’s “Rocky Mountain News” Says Goodbye

After Almost 150 Years, Denver’s Rocky Mountain News Says Goodbye

On Thursday, the executives from E.W. Scripps Co., the corporate owner of Denver’s Rocky Mountain News, announced their decision in the 150-year-old newspaper’s newsroom to close the Rocky Mountain News. The announcement came as metropolitan newspapers and major newspaper companies all across the country find themselves reeling, with plummeting advertising revenues and dramatically diminished share prices. Earlier this week, Hearst, owner of the San Francisco Chronicle, announced that unless it was able to make immediate and steep expense cuts, it would be forced to put the paper up for sale and possibly close it. Two other major newspapers publishing with joint operating agreements, one in Seattle and the other in Tucson, are facing closure in coming weeks.

The Rocky Mountain News was founded in 1859 by William Byers, one of the most influential figures in Colorado history. Scripps bought the newspaper in 1926 and immediately began a longtime newspaper battle with The Denver Post. That fight ebbed and flowed over the course of the rest of the 20th century, at one point resulting in penny-a-day subscriptions in the late ’90s. Perhaps the most critical step for the Rocky Mountain News occurred in 1942, when then-Editor Jack Foster saved it by adopting the tabloid style for which it has been known ever since. Readers loved the change, and circulation took off.

During the past decade, the Rocky Mountain News has won four Pulitzer Prizes, more than all but a handful of American newspapers. Its Sports Section was named one of the 10 best in the nation just this week. Last year, its Business Section was cited by the Society of American Business Editors and Writers as one of the best in the country. And its photography staff is regularly listed among the best in the nation when the top photo newspapers are judged.

The closure of the Rocky Mountain News means that like the vast majority of larger American cities today, Denver now is left with only one major newspaper, The Denver Post.

Readers can read the “Farewell Editorial” from Friday’s edition of the Rocky Mountain News here.

Final Edition: Denver’s Rocky Mountain News Says Goodbye

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Jeff Han: The Amazingly Orgasmic Pixel Guy

Jeff Han: The Amazingly Orgasmic Pixel Guy

The Emergence of Multi-Touch Technology

When Steve Jobs first introduced Apple’s iPhone at Macworld last year, the feature that evoked the most excitement was its touch-screen interface, allowing more than one touch at a time. The multi-touch technology added innovative new functions, such as allowing the user to easily zoom in and out of pictures and web pages by pinching the screen with two fingers.

But a more advanced version of the amazing power of multi-touch technology has been unleashed upon screens much larger than those on the iPhones. Over the past few years, Jeff Han, a research scientist at New York University, has developed a relatively inexpensive way to make large multi-touch screens that can accommodate 10, 20, or even more fingers. He foresees applications that range from interactive whiteboards to touch-screen tables and digital walls, any of which can manipulated by more than just one person. Han’s company, Perspective Pixel, is based upon the unique multi-touch technology that he’s pioneered.

The Amazing Perspective Pixel

Han’s touch display is made of clear acrylic with light-emitting diodes that are attached to the edges, which illuminate a six-millimeter-thick acrylic piece with infrared light. Normally, the light from the diodes reflects along predictable paths within the acrylic plate, a physical phenomenon called total internal reflection. However, once a finger or other object touches the acrylic, the internally reflecting light diffuses at the point of contact, scattering outside the surface. Behind the acrylic surface, there is a camera that captures this light and using simple image-processing software, the captured scattering is interpreted in real time as discrete touches and strokes.

Many researchers who’ve been working for decades on touch technology have been extremely excited to see these developments. “For almost two decades, we’ve been trapped by the tyranny of the screen, the mouse, and the keyboard,” observed Don Norman, professor at Northwestern University, in Chicago, and the author of The Design of Future Things. “It’s nice to think we’re breaking away from that and going toward touch-screen manipulation in the real physical world.”

What follows below is a video that presents a fascinating demonstration of Han’s Pespective Pixel, an exhibition that he made of “Perspective Pixel” at the annual TED Conference in Aspen, Colorado.

Jeff Han Presenting Perspective Pixel at TED

You can read more about Jeff Han’s groundbreaking Perspective Pixel in The Technology Review here.

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