Every film Pixar has produced has landed in the top fifty highest-grossing animated films of all time. What's their secret? Mathematics. Oh, and 22 Rules of Storytelling. [more inside]
Prototypes are usually the missing links in the evolution of human technology, the dead-ends of ideas that give way to the refinement of the final physical product. Prototypes aren't just for Darth Vader. While the legal back and forth between Apple and Samsung continues, a treasure trove of prototype designs for Apple devices has been released to the public, showing insights into various design approaches and feature enhancements, including larger form-factor iPads with and without kickstands and landscape ports and iPhones that parody the Sony logo, show a different layout for camera elements, and look remarkably like fourth-generation models, as far back as 2005. On the other hand, some have made prototypes into the end goal itself, such as the folks at Dangerous Prototypes, a site which features a new open-source electronic hardware project each month. Some are just gratuitous fun, while others are a bit more practical, such as one project that recycles old Nokia displays and another that provides access to infrared signal, useful for hacking together remote controls for all sorts of IR-based devices. Other prototypes of tomorrow's technology are less concerned with shrinking down the guts of the invention itself, to make it disappear, but rather on how we interact with and integrate physical representations of these ideas into our daily lives. Above all else, prototypes are always forward-looking and are therefore inherently optimistic expressions of human creativity: Even children are getting into imagining the world of tomorrow.
Spacehack "A directory of ways to participate in space exploration. Interact and connect with the space community."
This year, MIT is free. Well, not really -- you won't get the degree, and you won't get to talk to the top minds in science or stay in a really cool dorm. But OpenCourseWare provides, as Wired puts it, "Every lecture [sometimes on video, sometimes only the notes], every handout, every quiz." Curious about Psycholinguistics? Urban Transportation, Land Use, and the Environment? Non-linear Programming? Cognitive & Behavioral Genetics? String Theory for Undergraduates? They are in Kenya.
Genome liberation. "Life science researchers -- even those who work in academic settings -- are finding that corporations are just as eager to patent the tools as they are the data, and in many cases, universities are bending over backward to let the private sector have its way. As a result, a growing number of bioinformatics researchers are beginning to look to the free-software and open-source software movements for inspiration in their quest for bio freedom."
As the Human Genome Project gets closer to unlocking the entire genetic code that makes up human beings, Clinton is urging researchers to keep it open to all. Apparently many pharmaceutical companies have patents on chunks of the code and uses for it. The government funded research continues to be posted to the web, hopefully the entire database will be available when they're done.