Saturday, February 18, 2017

Researchers Invent New Solar-Powered Technology that Purifies Dirty Water 160 Times Cheaper than Existing Ones

Water is one of our basic necessities, but as we have consistently reported, the situation on water accessibility around the world is very dire.

According to United Nations statistics, more than 2.9 billion people in 48 countries will face water shortages in the next 10 years. Water experts say it could destabilize and jeopardize the existence of some nations.

Particularly with clean drinking water, the statistics are appalling.  Over 1 billion people worldwide get their drinking water from unimproved sources including lakes, rivers, dams, springs and unprotected dug wells. The consequences of drinking from these sources is most likely death. Water-related disease kills around 840,000 people annually. Women and children are said to spend more than 140 million hours a day collecting usable water, which is more often than not from contaminated sources.

To solve this obvious problem, we need an impressive innovation that will ensure we no longer fully depend on our traditional sources for water. Or, if even we would depend on it, we should purify the dirty water many people are drinking around the world to avert disease and death.

Therefore, many researchers around the world have worked around the clock to help mitigate the problem. In the recent past, some researchers have invented resourceful technology to help solve the growing water problem. More researchers are still coming out with their inventions.

A group of researchers have announced in a new study, the invention of a new solar-powered water purifier that is cheaper than the existing ones. The raw materials needed to construct the solar still technology cost just $1.60 per square meter. Similar existing water purifiers can cost up to $200 per square meter.

Apart from the price, this solar still is said to be four times faster and more effective than its already available competitors. Solar stills have been around for years, with most being simple black-bottomed vessels filled with water, and topped with clear glass or plastic. Sunlight absorbed by the black material speeds evaporation, which is trapped by the clear topping and funneled away for drinking water. Most pollutants don’t evaporate, and so are left behind. But much of the sun’s energy is wasted in the slow heating of a full vessel of water. Even the best stills need to be around 6 square meters in size to produce enough water for a single person for one day.

To make the technology efficient, researchers have attempted two things. First, they designed their stills so that only the very top layer of water in the vessel is heated and evaporated, which means less energy is lost. Second, they’ve turned to nanomaterials to absorb more of the sun’s rays. However, efficient light-absorbing nanomaterials can cost hundreds of dollars per gram, making them unrealistic for widespread use in developing countries where the technology is needed the most.

However, Qiaoqiang Gan, an electrical engineer at the State University of New York (SUNY) in Buffalo realized the cost of the nanomaterials, and wanted a cheap alternative. Gan is the lead author of the latest study.

With a block of polystyrene foam and a fiber-rich paper – similar to the paper used to make currency – Gan and his research team produced a new super-cheap device. According to the researchers, their technology is not only cheap, but is also 88% efficient, channeling energy it traps from the sunlight into the evaporating water. This allows a 1-square-meter-sized device to purify 1 liter of water per hour, which is about four times faster than already commercially available versions.

Using extremely low-cost materials, we have been able to create a system that makes near maximum use of the solar energy during evaporation. At the same time, we are minimizing the amount of heat loss during this process,” Gan said.

The technology will “allow people to generate their own drinking water much like they generate their own power via solar panels on their house roof,” said Zhejun Liu, a visiting scholar at SUNY Buffalo who also took part in inventing the technology.

According to the estimate, providing the minimal water needed for a family of four, with this new technology, would cost as little as $5 for the raw materials per device. The cheap cost may not only help people in impoverished regions, but also help aid workers deploy cheap water purifiers to people affected by natural disasters which wipe out safe drinking water sources.

The researchers have presented their technology paper in the journal Global Challenges. The researchers announced the formation of a company called Suny Clean Water to commercialize their technology; further adding they’re already in discussions with other companies around the world to make the technology available, especially in developing countries where it is needed the most.

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Did You Know That Google Is Tracking Your Every Movement ?

It has emerged that Google has been tracking Smartphone users everywhere they go, indicating it with a red dot on a map to mark and make their location much clearer for identification.

If you do not believe this, you remember what appeared in the scene of the Minority Report, where Tom Cruise is on the run from the law, but is unable to avoid detection because everywhere he goes, there are constant retina scans feeding his location back to a central database? That is exactly what we are talking about here.

You can even track yourself to see whether what we are talking about is true or not. Just log in with the same account you use on your Smartphone. You will be able to see records of everywhere you have been from day one of that month. Just follow this link 

It is an established fact that no matter what privacy settings you may try to implement, your information is still being collected and stored somewhere by our governments.

But somehow, you can minimize your tracking by adhering to the following procedure below. Just follow the following steps carefully and share this information with your friends, families and anybody you know.

How To Disable Tracking & Erase Your Past History ?

To check whether location history is enabled on your account, go to the Google Maps Location history page and click the gear-icon button to access History settings.

You can disable or enable the service there. Disabling location history however, does not remove your past history.

If you would like to erase the locations Google Maps has stored for the past 30 days, go back to the Location history page. The default time period shows location history for the current day, so you may not see any plots on the map. Use the pull-down menu below the calendar on the left to show your history, up to 30 days.

If you choose a time period in which Google Maps has tracked your location, you will see the points where you have been on the map. Below the calendar, you will see options to delete your history from the time period you have chosen or to delete all history.

Thursday, November 24, 2016

The Top 5 Supercomputers in the World

A supercomputer is a beast-like machine that runs on unbelievable amounts of power and produces almost unheard of amounts of data. So, where are the top 5 supercomputers located?
In today’s world, supercomputers are retrogressive images from those in the mid to late 1960’s. Typically speaking, supercomputers appear to be one (or several connected) large metal containers. Inside the containers, you will find several other “micro-computers” that connect together by a series of wires, ultimately leading to a giant monitor for the system administrator(s).  Over all, the amount of processing power that these expensive machines possess is crazy-stupid. Just imagine playing Call of Duty or Halo on a supercomputer with 1TB internet connections. You’re sure to be the host of any match you participate in!

Starting off our “Top 5” list is a supercomputer located in the United States of America.

Mira is utilized by IBM’s self-fabricated supercomputer, in which peaks out at 8.6 Petaflops (Pflop/s). This supercomputer has found itself a home at the Argonne National Laboratory, and is making great use of the IBM’s BlueGene/Q stage that contains 786,000 center processors. This supercomputer is capable of handling an outstanding 10 quadrillion computations every second. This new line of supercomputers will soon perform, in a single day, what most modern computers can do in 20 years.This machine is also open for those in science who desire a substantial scale of computing power.

Coming in at number 4, our next supercomputer is hosted in Japan.

K Computer, also known as ‘K PC,’ is an interesting place. This location provides us with the most elevated gauge on these massive supercomputers. The sole development of this massive computer was to provide the highest possible status for speed performances. With an enormous hard drive bay coming in at a total of 10.5 Pflop/s, Fujitsu has designed an impressive supercomputer, now situated in RIKEN Advanced Institute for Computational Science in Japan. Hosting 705,000 SPARC64 Octa center processors, this massive computer has full capabilities for performing logical operations. Such operations include worldwide catastrophe counteractive actions; those in the field of meteorology; and even therapeutic examination.

Holding down the list at number 3, we have another supercomputer hosted within the United States.

With Sequoia we have yet another IBM-based supercomputer. Sequoia, much like its predecessor Mira, is running off the BlueGene/Q and holds a vast 1.6 million 16 center processors. This massive supercomputer has been performing at a peak rate of 17.2 Pflop/s!

This supercomputer has found itself a home nesting inside the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory. There, it has finally finished the never-ending move to characterize the registering of backing up data on the Stockpile Stewardship Program. This program is intended to aid the United States with the wellbeing, security, and even the viability of the maturing atomic weapons stockpile.

Dropping into second spot is the United States, again.

Titan is indeed one of the most promising moves forward. This massive supercomputer, dubbed Jaguar, is capable of performing the extreme speeds of 17.6 Pflop/s. This supercomputer can utilize an aggregate of 561,000 Opteron 6274, 16 center processors, running at 2.2GHz. To make matters even more outstanding, this mega supercomputer is also running alongside several NVIDIA GPUs. Here, my friends, is your gaming supercomputer.

This supercomputer, is in fact, the most recent supercomputer sent to Oak Ridge. The company had, just last week, taken the ribbon off their new establishment.

Panther, their old supercomputer, is currently being overhauled. Panther highlights 18,699 figure hubs; each of these hubs will host a 12 center AMD Opteron CPU. The Titan – the updated version of Panther – has the same base concept, however, the Panther, has been updated from the 12 center to the 16 center. These CPU’s are also matched with the power of NVIDIA Kepler K20x GPU nested into each hub. Altogether, this supercomputer hosts 18,688 CPUs and another 18,688 GPUs.

And finally, at number 1 on the list, a supercomputer hosted in China.

The Tianhe-2 supercomputer is by far, the most significant of the “Milkyway-2.” Dubbed as the lord of all supercomputers, it produces bolting fast speeds, reaching 33.9 Pflop/s. This supercomputer has been manufactured by China’s National University of Defense Technology.

But what makes this supercomputer so unique is that this beast-of-a-machine is running on an unheard 3,120,000 cores. Thus, involving a series of blended technological services using the Intel Xeon E5 Processors, custom built processors, and even the Intel Xeon Phi co-processor.

With a variety of supercomputers, researchers have found a new way to extend their capabilities from what was once their limitation of working with ultra-complex quantum mechanical counts. These types of supercomputers are often used for atmospheric research, as well as reproducing snippets within the universe. We can also see various groups and military organizations using them for nuclear research, as well as crypt-analysis.

Bringing a future to the forefront of digital/cyber threats and attacks, one day supercomputers will lead the world in war, and in defense of cyber terrorists.

Best Secret Codes for Android Phones

The main functionality of having secret codes hidden within a mobile device was originally intended for the employees of the respective devices to trouble shoot and perform procedures. Yet now, living in a digital world, everyone has access to this information.
The most common Android codes are:

Factory Reset

Open your dialer and type in the following *#*#7780#*#*. Another way is to open up settings and click on Restore > Factory Reset.

Reinstall Firmware

You can reinstall your device’s firmware with ease by typing in *2767*3855#. Ultimately, you can also use a third party software on your computer to connect your phone and install new firmware modules.

Enable Testing Services Mode

This is commonly used for testers and android programmers. Activate your Testing Services Mode by typing *#*#*#*#197328640 into your dialer. Once you’ve done this, open the settings page to find the new Testing Menu.

Camera Information

Like most programmers, I often want to see the type of camera on the phone. Type in *#*#34971539#*#*.

Backing up Media Files

Believe it or not, you can create backups of your media files by using the phone’s dialer. Simply type *#*#*273 283 255* 663 282*#*#*.

Google Talk Monitoring Service

“Spy onto them, as they spy onto us” – line from the 90’s movie “Hackers.” Yes, Google is spying on you. So, let’s open up that monitoring service by typing in *#*#8255#*#*. From there you’ll soon find out what data Google really has on you.

Battery Status

While the top-right part of your screen displays the battery status, you can also see more information by typing in *#0228#.

Encryption Information

What type of encryption is your phone carrier using to protect you? You can see the encryption type your phone is using by entering *#32489#.

Data Usage Stats

Everyone who owns a mobile device is often curious as to how much data they really have used. Most times, it seems the phone bill comes in saying you used X amount of data, and you’re sure you didn’t. Put the phone company to the test: simply type in *# 3282 * 727 336*#.

3D Testing

This may not work on all devices, but you can test out your 3D settings by typing in 3845 #*920#. This will show you if your devices are capable of rendering 3D modules.

WLAN Testing

You can easily check the status of your Wireless Lan network settings by typing in 526#*#*#*#* or 528#*#*#*#*.

GPS Test

You can perform a full GPS test to see how accurate your GPS settings are. GPS isn’t always 100% dead on target. Just run the test *#*#1575#*#* to see how well your GPS is actually working for you.

Bluetooth Testing

Ever wondered why your Bluetooth settings are dropping connections? Maybe you can’t connect as quickly as you once could? Test out your Bluetooth for potential issues, and to see what type of Bluetooth hardware you’re using. Simply type *#*#232331#*#* into the dialer pad.

Checking FTA SW (Software)

If you wanted to look at your device’s firmware to see the type of software used, type *#*#1111#*#*.

Checking FTA HW (Hardware)

Now that you have your software information, find out what it’s running on. Type in *#*#2222#*#*.

Diagnostics Settings

View the settings configurations of your diagnostic testing by typing in *#9090#.

Sources: AnonHQ (iPhone Tricks), Android Stack Exchange, XDA-Developers.

Saturday, November 5, 2016

Aviation Experts: The Truth Behind Switching Your Smartphone to Airplane Mode During Flight

It is a routine practice for flight attendants to ask passengers on board an aeroplane to switch off or put their smart devices on flight mode. This warning is repeated with all seriousness, especially when the plane if taking-off or about to land.

When the plane has taken off and gained stability in the air, those who have their devices off can switch it on, but it is still recommended that they put it on flight mode.

Passengers obey the instruction without asking about why they are being told to put their Smartphones on flight mode. Today, we are lucky to have some aviation experts who will educate us on what will happen if passengers refuse to switch their devices to flight mode while on board an airplane. We acknowledge that we sourced the article from the Tech Worm.

The shortest answer a passenger will get from a flight attendant, is failure to switch off will result into the device’s signals interfering with the plane’s electrical and telecommunication systems. So, the next question will be, if the signals interfere with the plane’s communication systems, what will happen next? Can it cause a malfunction, or even lead to the plane crashing? The attendant might not be able to give a detail answer to these questions, so let us now hear what the experts have to say.

According to aviation experts, there is no evidence that signals from passengers’ electronic devices have ever caused a plane to malfunction and crash. The experts say that the reason for prospective safety concerns on the devices is due to when you are more than 10,000 feet in the air, your cell phone signal bounces off multiple towers, sending out a stronger signal. This is something that might congest the networks on the ground.

Again, if you do not switch your device to flight mode, it can annoy pilots by causing an unpleasant sound for air traffic controllers. It is said a Smartphone’s radio emissions can be very strong. It can go up to about 8 Watt per square metre. Repetition of this extreme noise from passengers’ devices could cause the crew to miss a crucial radio call from air traffic control.

A pilot wrote in a blog post for Airline Updates that transmitting mobiles can cause audible interference on an aircraft’s radios, saying that it is not that a critical safety concern.

“Your phone will probably annoy a few pilots and air traffic controllers. But, most likely, not badly enough for them to take action against you if that’s what you want to know. You may have heard that unpleasant noise from an audio system that occasionally happens when a mobile phone is nearby. I actually heard such noise on the radio while flying. It is not safety critical, but is annoying for sure,” the pilot wrote.
According to the pilot, those problems are something like the noise that can be heard when a Smartphone rings near to a speaker: A slow, percussive thumping. But instead of coming out of a speaker, it can be heard through the headsets that are worn by pilots.

He adds that if 50 people on board the plane did not turn their Smartphone to flight mode, it would cause a lot of radio pollution, admitting that there has never been a case of a Smartphone or any device causing a plane to crash.

An aeronautics engineer named Coenraad Loubser explains further on the issue: “To compound matters, the weaker the signal your cell phone picks up from the tower, the more it amplifies its signal to try and get a response (and the more battery it uses). Planes with onboard cell coverage, allow your phone to communicate using very low power, or Wi-Fi. When you put your phone in Airplane mode, the GSM/3G Radio inside your phone is completely disabled and you can still use the phone for other functions.”
So, now you know why you are being asked to put your phone on flight mode while on board a flight. You also know the consequences of failing to do so. We advise that when you are flying, always stick to the rules onboard.

Saturday, October 22, 2016

The 10 Important URLs That Every Google User Should Know

What does Google know about the places you’ve visited recently? What are your interests as determined by Google? Where does Google keep a list of every word that you’ve ever typed in the search box? Where can you get a list of Google ads that were of interest to you?

The 10 Important Google Links

Google stores everything privately and here are the 10 important links (URLs) that will unlock everything Google knows about you. They are hidden somewhere deep inside your Google Account dashboard and they may reveal interesting details about you that are otherwise only known to Google. Let’s dive in.

1. Google stores a list of usernames and passwords that you have typed in Google Chrome or Android for logging into various websites. They even have a website too where you can view all these passwords in plain text.

2. Google creates a profile of yourself based on the sites you visit, guessing your age, gender and interests and then use this data to serve you more relevant ads. Use this URL to know how Google sees you on the web.

3. You can easily export all your data out of the Google ecosystem. You can download your Google Photos, contacts, Gmail messages and even your YouTube videos. Head over the the Takeout page to grab the download links.

4. If you ever find your content appearing on another website, you can raise a DMCA complaint with Google against that site to get the content removed. Google has a simple wizard to help you claim content and the tool can also be used to remove websites from Google search results that are scraping your content.

5. Your Android phone or the Google Maps app on your iPhone is silently reporting your location and velocity (are you moving and if yes, how fast are you moving) back to Google servers. You can find the entire location history on the Google Maps website and you also have the option to export this data as KML files that can be viewed inside Google Earth or even Google Drive.

6. Create a new Google Account using your existing email address. The regular sign-up process uses your address as your Google account username but with this special URL, you can use any other email address as your username.

7. Google and YouTube record every search term that you’ve ever typed or spoken into their search boxes. They keep a log of every Google ad that you have clicked on various websites, every YouTube video you’ve watched and, if you are a Google Now user, you can also see a log of all your audio search queries. OK Google. (Google searches) (Voice searches) (YouTube searches and watched videos)

8. You need to login to your Gmail account at least once every 9 months else Google may terminate your account according to their program policies. This can be an issue if you have multiple Gmail accounts so as a workaround, you can setup your main Gmail account as the trusted contact for your secondary accounts. Thus Google will keep sending you reminders every few months to login to your other accounts.

9. Worried that someone else is using your Google account or it could be hacked? Open the activity report to see a log of every device that has recently connected into your Google account. You’ll also get to know the I.P. Addresses and the approximate geographic location. Unfortunately, you can’t remotely log out of a Google session.

10. Can’t locate your mobile phone? You can use the Google Device Manager to find your phone provided it is switched on and connected to the Internet. You can ring the device, see the location or even erase the phone content remotely. You can even find the IMEI Number of the lost phone from your Google Account.

Sunday, August 14, 2016

World’s First Underwater Floating Tunnel : Norway

The world’s first floating submerged tunnel system is set to be built in Norway, in a $25 billion infrastructure project that aims to significantly reduce the amount of time it takes to travel across the country.

The route from the southern city of Kristiansand to Trondheim in the north, takes an average driver 21 hours to complete. A total of seven fjords cut into the route. As a result, travelers are forced to take ferries across the wide waterways.

However, if Norway’s Public Roads Administration (NPRA) successfully completes the project, the journey is expected to shorten to just over 10 hours. “This idea of Norway’s is sort of an intermediate technology of things that have been done before,” says Henry Petroski, a Duke University civil engineer who specializes in bridges. The world’s first floating submerged tunnel system about 30 meters (100ft) underwater. The underwater tunnels are said to be the most practical solution to the issue, as many of the waterways are too wide – with the largest being nearly a mile deep – for a typical bridge.

The tunnel system itself will be made up of two 1,200 meter (4,000ft) curved concrete tubes, floating up to 30 meters (100ft) below the surface. The tubes will be held up by pontoons on the surface, while connecting trusses keep them stable. In an effort to provide the tube with extra stability, the structure might also be bolted to the bedrock below.
Meanwhile, on the surface, wide gaps between the pontoons will allow ferries to pass through unhindered.
If you are wondering what It might feel like to drive underwater, the experience is said to feel the same as any other tunnel, according to Arianna Minoretti, a senior engineer with the country’s public roads administration.
The first underwater tunnel will connect Oppedal and Lavik. The tunnel will pass through the 1,300 meter (4,300ft) deep, 1,000 meter (3,300ft) wide Sognefjord.
Although the county regularly experiences rough weather, the NPRA is confident the submerged construction will be able to cope.
Having this connection means that people there do not have to wait for a helicopter to go to the hospital,” Minoretti says.
As the system is positioned underwater, the surrounding landscape will remain intact, the agency says. The project is expected to be completed by 2035.
Source: Anonhq