Got to pay your dues if you wanna sing the blues, but apparently even a robot can play jazz now. Listen to a robot named Shimon accompany a human jazz pianist on the marimba. You know that don't come easy.
With an eye toward narrowing the tech talent gap, researchers at MIT are experimenting with new training methods for teaching children as young as 4 the rudiments of computer programming. For their trials, the scientists relied on an interactive robot called Dragonbot and stickers corresponding to specific stimuli and responses to allow kids to develop basic computer commands.
A group of graduate students at the University of Washington have turned a hacked Microsoft Kinect gaming system into a prototype for a device that could make robotic surgery easier for doctors and safer for patients. The engineers are part of an industrywide effort to enhance touch sensitivity for physicians using mechanized surgery tools, a necessary and as-yet-elusive step on the road to full robotic surgery. The students envision using the Kinect's 3D sensors to provide surgeons a tactile point of reference -- or force feedback -- while a surgical robot does the dirty work.
PCs come in great variety and a multitude of price points; they have some good features that Macs don't have; and some Web sites are still optimized for Microsoft's Internet Explorer. Harry McCracken, a blogger at Technologizer and former editor of PC World, shares these and five other reasons why you should buy PCs. But he also has eight reasons you should buy Macs instead.