• Electric Boats and foldable kayaks

    East Bank

    First time out in both the electric inflatable and the foldable kayak. The River Lea runs through our campus, is part of our living lab and therefore a space we need to access.

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  • Crystal Waters

    Nikiana, Lefkada

    Lefkada water and light. No words, just photos.

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  • DJI Mini 4 Pro

    N10 Looking towards city

    Have been testing a new DJI Mini 4 Pro. Exploring video and photos. Some first tests below.

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  • House Mill flood video

    House MillHouse Mill

    Almost nine months into flood monitoring at House Mill means this week I was working on a short video to showcase the work at an exhibition coming soon to One Pool Street.

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  • GVC Drone Pilot Training

    Phantom 4

    This week I took my first steps working toward my GVC qualification to pilot a drone safely in the UK. I spent three days with 8 others under the instruction of the excellent Chris Wright at Drone Pilot Academy. I have been flying small drones over the past ten years and have had a DJI Spark since 2016, but late last year we secured some internal funding that would allow us to expand our ground based Lidar to include a drone based device - the BLK2FLY.

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  • Factory Visit Portakabin

    Portakabin Titan

    We have just started a project with Portakabin and other SME’s. We are looking at using IoT and AI to support the more efficient running of these temporary modular buildings and increase the automation of the ESG reporting. This week the project team met for the first time face to face up at the Portakabin factory in York.

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  • GardenLab Opening

    GardenLab Vis

    A couple of weeks ago the GardenLab officially opened after months of transforming the roof garden into a space we can use for research. A lovely collaborative effort across research departments at UCL East and a great example of interdisciplinary research. We have been using the space to test our a variety of IoT sensors and for the development of some experimental data visualisation.

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  • Things seen

    Aurora borealis in North London

    Sometimes a picture is worth a thousand words. This week I just want to share some of the things I have seen over the past ten days. This was probably inspired by staying up til 2am taking pictures of the Aurora Borealis from a bedroom window in North London. Probably a once in a life time opportunity.

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  • The Birth of a Habit

    Do Interesting - top of the summer reading pile

    It has been about 9 months since I read a book by Russell Davies called “Do Interesting: Notice. Collect. Share”. It was the prompt I needed to start sharing things again. I love this quote from Russell on why the habit of doing things on a regular basis gives you an advantage over others, it comes from a recent talk (about 13 mins in) “most people don’t do, so if you do then you have an advantage”. So have I given birth to a new habit?

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  • The LLM whirrs

    Ollama running llama

    I am starting to use LLM’s as much as I am using Google. This shift has happened over the past six months as a result of both needing to check it out to see how students might be using it and since I am late comer to using ChatGPT to help me scaffold simple code for html, js, css, and python scripts (I have only just this week installed GitHub CoPilot!). I have found the latter transformative in helping me test out ideas quickly without some of the road blocks of trying to figure out what questions to ask on stackoverflow or google.

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  • Walnut Lamp

    Walnut Lamp<

    After a failed attempt using some fresh cherry, I reverted back to some walnut I had spare from a previous project (side table in walnut). I glued together three smaller pieces to form a volume and shaped it with a circular saw. The bulb is a little too bright without a shade but looks lovely in the living room.

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  • Blinking Neo Pixels and MQTT

    Blinking Neo Pixels

    Have had some fun over the past few weeks rethinking the term one workshop for CE. In previous years the students have built a plant monitor from nails and an Arduino through to setting up influxdb and grafana dashboards on a Raspberry Pi. The goal was to teach all the component parts of an IoT system. This year timings are changing a little which required an evolution of the project. This year we will have neopixel rings.

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  • Bob - introverts and lists

    Bob Mortimer - And Away

    We are a fans of Bob Mortimer in our house. My wife maybe a little too much. A friend lent me “And Away” a while back but it is still sitting on the shelf in the living room waiting to be read. My capacity for buying books seems to exceed my capacity to read them. I noticed the audio book a couple of weeks ago on Spotify so that has been my “listening while doing odd jobs” around the house.

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  • Cherry Tree - wait until dry

    Cherry tree found

    Back in March I spotted this lovely looking piece of Cherry on the wood chip pile at the allotment. I grabbed this piece and a few others to mess about with in the workshop. I was curious about what I could make with them.

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  • The fish are alive

    Frogs in the pond

    A couple of years ago I rebuilt the pond in the garden and we added 6 goldfish to help reduce the number of mosquito in the garden in late summer. The previous owners had a lovely water feature with lots of shaded still water - a perfect place for mosquito lava. The goldfish and the open pond with a mini pump to create an aerating waterfall seemed to work. But last year the fish all disappeared. We retrospectively observed a heron eating them all (plus a few frogs).

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  • MQTT live feed

    MQTT live feed

    This week I wrote a thing to help show the data spewing out of our building. For the past 5 years I have been campaigning to make the data commonly available in modern buildings more accessible in our new UCL East campus. For the past year with help from folk across the organisation we have been successfully harvesting data from One Pool Street. But rather than just explaining to people what we were doing, I wanted to have a quick dashboard to show them.

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  • How to write a report

    The Agile Comms Handbook

    Has been a real pleasure to work with Alex over this past term on our Ethics, Sustainability and Business of IoT module. We have had a great mix of people coming in to talk about their experiences and I have been learning each week. The last session was about how to write reports. The assessment for this module is all about writing a business report, so a little different to what the students have produced in the other 7 modules. We had the excellent Giles Turnbull come and share his wisdom from decades of trying to get people communicate more productively.

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  • Design Museum 2024

    Design Museum 2024

    It is always lovely to visit the Design Museum in London. Leah organised a class visit to help guide the students in prep for their exhibition designs this summer. Whilst the exhibits themselves were interesting the focus today was to think about how to exhibit work. (Although we did manage to also squeeze in a visit to the Skateboard exhibition)

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  • Vespa One Year In

    Vespa One Year In - 1000 miles on the day

    My first motorbike in London just over 20 years ago was a Vespa. It ended up being stolen in Camden one evening and then found in the early hours of the morning a day or so later. 20 years on and as a result of another motorbike theft - a Ducati Multistrada from outside the TfL offices in Stratford - I have found myself riding a Vespa, but this time an electric. Exactly one year of riding and I have done exactly 1000 miles. How does that happen!

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  • Ikigai


    My son bought me Ikigai for my birthday. We had been chatting a couple of months earlier about finding meaning in life, living rather than working and what it means to have a career. He is at the start of his, I was jokingly saying that I am near the end of mine (I am probably a little distance from being able to retire). He had somehow come across this book and I remember us discussing it from the perspective of Japanese culture so it was a lovely surprise to receive it as a gift.

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  • Home Energy Grafana

    Home energy dashboard daily gas last two weeks

    Grafana is one of our go to tools for data exploration at work. Since we are storing lots of data in InfluxDB it is a simple way to create quick dashboards. This week I found myself using it to explore how much energy we were generating via our house solar and trying to work out what was contributing to our base load. The image above shows our daily gas usage over the past 2 weeks (16-19th Feb were warmer days so less heating used).

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  • Birdbox camera

    Blue Tits Timelapse from 2023 on YouTube

    Last year I setup a RPi Zero with a NoIR camera to film inside a bird box in the garden. Whilst I managed to get some footage of eggs and the chicks fledging, this was only after the event. For some reason the WiFi connection dropped meaning I couldn’t remotely connect to the device to see if it was working. This weekend I set up a version 2 with a RPi 3B.

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  • Leica LIDAR


    Had a fun Friday this week exploring some new kit in the lab. We have few new projects emerging in the lab making use of LIDAR including our digital campus work, some heritage building scanning and our continued work in QEOP implementing a shared living lab environment. Late last year we were fortunate to win some RCIF funding to help kick start these collaborations and were able to purchase a Leica BLK360 and BLK2FLY. Today we had a visit from Chris (Leica UK rep) who accelerated our learning on the kit by spending a few hours with us to introduce the hardware and various bits of excellent software which look like they will really help speed up our workflow.

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  • Solar Scraping

    Zanussi Solar Inverter

    The home solar / battery system has been running for just over 5 years. While the system has been running smoothly in the background, we’ve encountered a few hiccups over the past six months. Such challenges are perhaps an inherent part of being an early adopter of new technologies. Nevertheless, during this period, we have generated about 1.5 megawatt-hours of energy per year from our roof. I had started to think about expanding the number of panels on our roof (we have 9, space for 6 more) so maybe these “issues” are an opportunity to kickstart that process. So what are the challenges we have been having.

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  • Counting Birds


    This weekend volunteers across the UK have been counting birds in their gardens as part of the RSPB Big Garden Birdwatch. I spent a sunny hour on Sunday afternoon counting visitors to our garden and trying to get some photos of the variety of birds seen. I have a 200mm lens on my Canon M6 but could probably have benefitted from something longer. When I uploaded my 36 observations there had been over 4 million bird counts added. I was also curious to see how my observations over an hour matched with those recorded by my Birdnet-Pi installation. Results below.

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  • Project Ideas


    One of my favourite January jobs is thinking about potential summer projects - both for self and for student dissertations. As we start to get the students thinking about potential projects we also present some ideas of things we would work on if we had 5 months to develop a project. A couple of my favourites this year are “Ambient Portals” (an interactive installation to ask the research question: do staff engage with ambient devices that communicate activity across dislocated offices? “a nabztag for offices rather than divorcees”) and “Jump Buddy” (A member of Pool Street staff is a potential future Olympic equestrian. We are keen to develop a device that can be worn by the rider to give either real-time performance information or post activity guidance to help improve performance.)

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  • The Bus Nook

    Nook E-Ink Bus Time Display

    A little project over the 2023/24 Christmas break involved putting back into use an old Barnes and Noble Nook that had been sitting in a drawer for years. The goal was to display when buses will be arriving at the bus stop at the top of our road using the excellent TfL bus API. I was also keen to include some info on weather - ideally I wanted to show the likelyhood of rain that day - useful when you are cycling to work.

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  • T1 2023 complete

    SDV presentations CE 2023

    Term One, 2023/24 complete. This week we had two sets of final crits - individual projects from Make Design Build and group projects from Spatial Data Visualisation. These projects seem to get better each year - not sure what that says about our teaching or the quality of our students!

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  • Thames Barrier Site Visit

    Type 316 stainless steel with a smooth 2B finish

    Today I finally managed a trip to the Thames Barrier thanks to a visit organised by CASA visitor Fuko (Assistant Prof at Nagoya Institute of Technology) and run by the Environment Agency. My recent involvement in the House Mill project has peaked my interest in flooding recently so this was a visit I was looking forward to.

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  • A Climate Unconference

    A Climate Unconference

    Today we hosted a climate unconference organised by Alex Deschamps-Sonsino. The Eventbrite blurb said “A free unconference to coincide with COP28. An opportunity for the London climate community to meet and learn from each other.” The agenda for the event was to create an enviroment where “the participants run a session/give a talk / play climate games / whatever that others who are attending can choose to sign up to on the day. It’s chaotic but fun.”

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  • Illustration


    Illustration is one of my favourite forms of visual communication. I am more of a doodler capturing subconscious thoughts but since today is the first National Illustration day I thought I would share a couple of illustrations I look at everyday.

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  • Moorfields

    Moorfields Ubisense Trials

    Ophthalmology typically records the highest levels of attendances for specialist outpatient treatments with figures reaching 5.5 million visits for 2020-21. During the COVID pandemic patients missed standard check-ups and examinations creating a significant backlog of appointments. To expand capacity Moorfields Eye Hospital tested pop-up eye clinics in decentralised easy to access locations as an alternative to traditional appointments in a central London hospital to increase patient flow through these services. Since 2021 we have been conducted several research projects with colleagues at Moorfields to analyse patient flow.

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  • Look Up

    Look up was a project exploring thermal projections. It was installed in the Urban Room at UCL East as “Heat Trace” part of a collaboration with Henrietta Williams and her Testing Ground exhibition hosted in the UCL Urban Room at UCL East. Thermal imaging, also known as infrared imaging, allows us to visualize and capture thermal energy emitted by objects in the form of heat. By detecting these temperature variations, thermal cameras provide a unique perspective that extends beyond what our naked eyes can perceive. This ability to see the invisible heat signatures makes thermal imaging invaluable across a multitude of industries and applications.

    Look Up thermal camera mounted in ceiling.

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  • Allotmenting

    Allotment Harvest

    My day to day is typically focused on technology and urbanization so it is a welcome change to get my hands dirty working on the allotment. It took us 5 years on a waiting list but about 6 years ago we got our own plot a very short walk from our house. The combination of physical labour, eating food you have grown and the mental health aspects have all proved to be more beneficial than I anticipated.

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  • I love Lego

    Lego Dunc

    I received this wonderful gift this week from my wife. It is a Diorama of me created by one of her awesome students who had made something similar for my wife last year as a thankyou for being a great supervisor. Hers had an amazing scene of lab life. Mine was based on the prompts - “he likes computers, motorbikes and surfing. And he likes bats, wears glasses and is balding!”

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  • CE2023 Prototype 1 - Blinking Monsters

    CASA0014 Blinking Monsters

    We are just over half way through the first couple of MSc Connected Environments modules and the students have presented their first work. After an “introduction to arduino” workshop each student was tasked with making a physical prototype that introduced themselves and their interests.

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  • House Mill flood monitoring

    House Mill SonarHouse Mill Sonar

    About six months ago I received an email from a colleague at the Institute of Archeology who has been volunteering at House Mill. He was keen to explore how technology might help them monitor flood events to build an evidence base to support future flood mitigation activity.

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  • Birdnet-Pi and Birdweather PUC


    In 2022 we held a Birdnet-pi workshop in the connected environments lab. In the prep for it we got a call from Tim at Birdweather suggesting we could also push data up to his website - 20 subscription keys later and we slotted it into the workshop. The event was a big success and I have been running a Birdnet-pi installation at home ever since, so I was curious when I came across the Birdweather PUC on kickstarter.

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  • Season 3, episode 1

    hopes for the day to day

    Has been lovely to meet our 3rd cohort of MSc Connected Environments students over the past week. The usual orientation sessions and software install day were followed up by the traditional CASA treasure hunt which this year finished over at one of our favourites - Crate Brewery - for drinks and pizza.

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  • Cohort 3 arriving means an updated device video

    The start of term means a new cohort of students and a new digital devices video from Andy!

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  • In Practice One

    In Practice

    Education is not just about absorbing knowledge; it’s also about applying it in innovative and meaningful ways. Recently, our MSc students completed a new challenge that pushed them beyond the traditional dissertation report. They were tasked with presenting their work as part of an exhibition in the Urban Room – a new space at UCL East for events, exhibitions, workshops and engagement with local stakeholders, professional audiences, and the wider public in east London. This choice of venue added a layer of significance to our students’ presentations, as they were challenged to make their academic work relevant and accessible to a broader audience.

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  • Gaia inflates

    Gaia inflates

    A week before the opening of UCL East Marshgate I happened to be in building for a meeting - love seeing the behind the scenes of art installations. This one is Gaia (more in a few weeks), I do like a serendipitous Timelapse.

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  • starting to notice, collect and share

    Do Interesting - top of the summer reading pile

    One of my summer reads was Do Interesting by Russell Davies (top of the pile). Will be using this with our students to encourage them to observe and record what they see in the world around them. This reminded me that I want to do more of this.

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  • Job Alert - PhD in Sustainable Digital Twins

    Interested in analysing how digital data can help create more sustainable buildings? Keen to explore how we can use data as a material to decrease the carbon intensity of our buildings rather than add to it?

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  • WLED

    Hacked an old IKEA lamp and inserted a string of LED’s controlled via an Arduino Feather Huzzah using the great WLED software package. Light is controlled over home wifi.


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  • Drivers of Change Convergence

    I was looking for a Drivers of Change card I wrote back in 2010 on Zoonotics and Pandemics. This led me down a path of trying to find a web page that no longer officially exists. But thanks to the Way Back Machine I was able to track down a “copy” of the site circa 2016.

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  • Geodesic

    Helped build a 4m diameter geodesic dome with 1500 LED lights controlled by a RPi using 3 Fadecandy controllers. Installed in a wood at Scout Park for their annual fireworks display.


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  • Connected Environments Curriculum

    A few people have been asking about the curriculum we plan to teach on the MSc in Connected Environments. The design went through a classic double diamond approach where the initial exploration expanded into something requiring a 3 or 4 year undergrad programme! The past six months have been spent narrowing this down into a connected curricula that could be approved by UCL. We are now in the second phase of the diamond as we actually start writing the course materials and again have to work out what we include and leave as additional resources.

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  • Calling all makers, hackers and tinkerers.

    The MSc in Connected Environments at UCL CASA has been given the go ahead. As such we are looking to make two additional hires into the team – one focused on helping teach the “hardware” side of IoT, the other to teach the “virtual” side of VR/AR/MR.

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  • Plywood Box Shelving

    Plywood shelving for study area made from a set of 16 different sized boxes.

    Building Boxes from Duncan Wilson on Vimeo.

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  • Greenhouse table

    A planting table with removable top so that planting trays / work surface can be swapped. Installed in allotment green house.

    Greenhouse Potting Table

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  • Connected Environments

    This week I started ‘Chapter 6’ of my working life with a move to UCL as Professor of Connected Environments to explore the question: how can digital technologies and connected environments help augment our understanding of the built and natural world? This is an evolution of the work I was doing at the Intel Sustainable Connected Cities research institute (see and prior to that at Arup. It is also the result of conversations over the past two years with many people here on the kind of Masters course we wish we could participate in and recruit from. The development of the Future Living Institute in UCL East and the academic vision for cross faculty collaboration (making, originating, connecting, living – (vision)) provides a fantastic platform and aligns with a need to learn by doing (see Smart London Medium post).

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  • Side table in walnut

    Side table made from a plank of walnut gifted from a neighbour.

    Side Table

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  • Plywood Shelving

    Shelving made to fit stairwell. Friction joints. Made with table saw.

    Plywood Shelf

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  • Intel Collaborative Research Institute

    The goal of the ICRI Urban IoT was to deliver outstanding research recognized by industry and academia. We brought together researchers from industry and academia in an Open IP environment to research, collaborate and build systems for deployment in the field. We applied creative approaches to the use of technology in an urban context and continued to innovate the IoT technologies required to deliver sustainable connected cities. The project reports on the ICRI website provide a summary of the 30+ projects and 150+ papers produced as a result of this work.

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  • Retropie

    RetroPi made to use at code club for teaching examples of classic arcade games. Donkey Kong was the favourite.


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  • Astropi

    Astro Pi made at Codeclub. Codeclub members were writing code to upload to the ISS so we used this 3D printed version to test the code. Final display for parents at the end of one code club including projection of coded examples onto wall of school.

    Astro Pi

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  • Trivet

    Trivet made as part of world working class at Blackhorse Workshops.


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  • Light Workshop

    Laser cut light workshop at Machine Rooms by @trispacekit.

    laser cut side lamp

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  • Workbench

    Workbench made from 2×4, 2×2 and 18mm plywood.


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  • Ring

    Silver ring made at EMF Camp 2016. Made from bar of silver, folded, soldered and then shaped with a hammer for three hours.


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  • Reaction Wall

    Reaction Wall made with Code Club members at Our Lady of Muswell Primary School. Arduino Mega controlling 20 Big Red Buttons that had been adapted with 10 bright LED’s in side the button for daylight use. Several modes of game play created including 1 and 2 player games. Final installation at Summer Fair and only 20p a go.

    Reaction Wall

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  • Bubbleao

    Inspired by Bubblino, this was a Galileo based bubble machine responding to tweets at Maker Faire Newcastle.

    makerfaireprep from Duncan Wilson on Vimeo.

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  • Delta Robot

    Arduino based Delta Robot made as an experiment for drawing faces.

    Delta Robot

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  • TED Global 2012 - Radical Openness

    TED Global 2012 was another fantastic feast of ideas from teaching to collaborative consumption and genetech to makers. The notes below are my highlights from the five days.

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  • IoT Week 2012

    IoT Week opening

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  • Small is the new big

    Autodesk IDEAS - 04

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  • Arup Explores Prototyping

    Arup Explores Prototyping was held in London on March 8th. Forty-five delegates, half from outside the firm, including practitioners and business leaders were provoked by 15 short presentations in three sessions; access to tools, successful prototyping business models and scale. The event was part of a series of events that aim to explore trends and technologies that may impact on the future of Arup and was held prior to a related evening event with our friends at 100%Open titled “User Makers and Distributed Production”. Both events were great, with lots of positive feedback. My take away from the events are below.

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  • TED Global 2011

    Last week I was at TED Global in Edinburgh. The event felt different to previous years in Oxford, it was bigger, seemed to have a broader mix of nationalities and a larger contingent of TEDx’rs.

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  • IoT expert mtg 5

    Xiaohui Yu from China Academy of Telecommunication Research (CATR) of the Ministry of Information Industry (MII) gave a fascinating overview of IoT activity in China. The scale of their investment is well reported so it was useful to hear about the support coming via government, enterprise and research, and where those programmes are being implemented.

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  • 3rd IoT European Conference

    I recently attended the 3rd Annual Internet of Things Europe 2011: Bridging the divide between policy and reality at the Management Centre Europe, Brussels I was invited by Rob van Kranenburg from Council and attending as a representative of the IoT Expert Group and was invited to contribute to the panel on standardisation. The event was useful to get a feel for the temperature of IoT developments in Europe and the progress being made. I think this was best summarised by Mike Nelson (@mikenelson) on the culture of the room when viewed through the lens of West Coast / East Coast / Europe. Which was a different take on the opening quote “Caminante, no hay camino, se hace camino al andar” (Traveller, there is no road; you make your path as you walk).

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  • system layers and science in schools

    I had the pleasure last week of two activities taking me out the office. The first was a trip to East Barnet School to see the installation of a series of science interactives developed under Project Faraday. We were part of the team that created the blueprints for the designs so it was great to see them in situ. The installations are built into the fabric of the building with the aim of exploding science out of the laboratory and into everyday school life. They included 60 year clock, a 3 storey high drop zone and the robot lab.

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  • IoT Expert Group governance, privacy, m2m

    The fourth meeting in Brussels of the EC expert group on the internet of things providing another interesting day of debate around the policy needed to support a humane yet commercial internet of things. On the agenda for the meeting were: continuing the review of a martyr paper on “governance”, a discussion on privacy and in particular the “privacy impact assessment” created through the RFID working party, and the implications of m2m standardisation.

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  • smart pop up retail

    Over the past couple of years we have done several workshops on the theme of retail of the future with collaborators such as the Gottlieb Duttweiler Institute and the Narrative Environment students at CSM. One of the consistent “future tech” ideas that popped out of those charettes would include some magic that allowed friendly robots to make “suggestions” that supported your consumption. Over the next couple of days we will be testing such robots in a temporary pop up retail installation at Arup Phase 2.

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  • Aedas Network Campus Berlin

    I was invited by Dietmar Leyk to participate in a workshop as part of the ANCB Metropolitan Technologies Programme in Berlin. The attendees were a mix of students from all over the world and experts from the fields of architecture, design, engineering and behaviourial science.

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  • Urban Internet of Things Tokyo

    The Urban Internet of Things workshop kicked off in the IBM Japan Hakozaki Headquarters “Solution Centre” with several presentations and demos including Arup’s Engin and Shane and Mayra presenting a well received “TenderVoice / TenderNoise: A two-faceted web-based community journalism and acoustic ecology project“.

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  • Internet of Things, police rather than prevent activity?

    An interesting “expert meeting” on the Internet of Things last week. We were joined by DG JUST who had prepared a draft paper for comment titled “A comprehensive approach on personal data protection in the European Union”. It is an update to the 1995 Data Protection Directive (Directive 95/46/EC of the European Parliament) and is reviewing data protection in general but is being influenced by the Internet of Things work in response to a changing world where “new ways of collecting personal data have become increasingly elaborated and less easily detectable”. The review is particularly looking at the following issues:

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  • INTA 34 World Urban Development Congress

    I presented our work on the Internet of Things at INTA34 yesterday. The theme was “Reinventing the Urban Environment” and discussion ranged from the philosophical to the practical and was interspersed with examples of work in progress (e.g. the nearby Port of Pasaia).

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  • Millennium Bridge Thermal Interactive

    ‘A Day in the Life of the Millennium Bridge’ by Joseph Giacomin was a collaboration between myself, Joseph and Kaveh Shirdel as part of the new exhibition in Arup Phase 2 called Bridge Stories.

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  • IoT Expert Group

    Internet of things expert group mtg

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  • SmartSantander

    Today i was at the kick off meeting for an interesting EU funded project called SmartSantander. It builds on the work of a couple of previous European projects in the “future internet” domain including Sensei which completes at the end of this year. The project overview is:

    (link to more...)
  • TED Global 2010

    After last years experience at TED I really wish this post was coming from me, but instead it is coming from our TED Global competition winner Salomé Galjaard.

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  • Web of Light

    Last week I attended a small gathering at Philips Design to workshop ideas for a public lighting scheme in Eindhoven.

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  • Ove Arup Key Speech

    It is 40 years today since Ove Arup presented the “Key Speech” in Winchester. I can remember reading it in late 1999 before I joined the firm and cynically thinking what a great leaders pitch. But within a year, and maybe through working on projects like the wobbly bridge, I observed that most of what he wrote is actually embedded in the culture of Arup.

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  • Pervasive 2010 Helsinki

    Gonzalo had a demo of his UCL / Arup CASE research at Pervasive this year and I was presenting at a workshop on “Energy Awareness and Conservation through Pervasive computing”. We had great feedback on the ambient displays with several requests for others to use the devices as communication media on their own projects. Next steps will be to make robust units with doorways into different datasets (e.g. resource use at Arup offices).

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  • Jordan - National Campaign for Public Awareness on the Drivers of Change

    Half the team have spent this week in Jordan to launch the “National Campaign for Public Awareness on the Drivers of Change”. The patron of the campaign is His Majesty King Abdullah II and our client is HRH Princess Sumaya bint El Hassan, President of EHSC.

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  • User Centred Design for Energy Efficiency in Buildings

    I spent last week at a TSB Sandpit on User Centred Design for Energy Efficiency in Buildings. 5 days with 30 people from academia and industry thinking about how UCD could be used to support energy efficiency in buildings.

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  • ITOBO wireless sensor network design tool

    Alan Gibney was over at Arup a couple of weeks ago testing a Wireless Sensor Network design tool in number 8 Fitzroy Street that he developed during his PhD on a tool for wifi access point positioning.

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  • The Well Connected City

    I spent the day at Imperial College Business School as part of a Design London and Living Labs Global event to bring together the tech and public sectors to talk about connected cities and to launch the Living Labs Global report Connected Cities Handbook – “a book about opportunity and frustration” (Sasha Haselmayer)

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  • SlimCity

    We recently finished the last leg of a great project we had been working on for the World Economic Forum. Our task was to create an online presence for the SlimCity knowledge cards we had produced in 2009. The aim was to make the cards accessible to a broader audience than those at the SlimCity workshops. As such, all the cards are accessible via the SlimCity website where they can be read online, browse the relationships between the cards, download a pdf version or leave comments on the themes raised by the cards.

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  • Open innovation for future Internet-enabled services in smart cities

    DG INFSO (Information Society and Media Directorate-General of the European Commission) is exploring the idea of pilot projects on “Open innovation for future Internet-enabled services in “smart cities”. Their recent communication “A Strategy for ICT R&D and Innovation in Europe: Raising the Game” recommended that “the CIP will support SMEs piloting highly innovative technologies, and the development of open platforms for user-driven innovation”.

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  • Thinking like a futurist at Amplified Leicester

    Spent an interesting day at Curve, Leicester speaking to the Amplified Leicester (@AmplifiedLeic #ampleic) crowd via an invite from Sue Thomas @suethomas.

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  • SENSEI breathes

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  • dConstruct 2009 Designing for Tomorrow

    Just back from a beautifully sunny Brighton attending dConstruct 2009. The blurb says: “dConstruct 09 brings together leading thinkers from the fields of ubiquitous computing, interface design, gaming and mobile to explore the challenges of designing for tomorrow.” Great low cost conference, sold out, great speakers, in a great venue. Below is a summary of observations during the day.

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  • TED Global the substance of things not seen

    Just back from my first TED. Have watched the videos over the past couple of years and have heard first hand accounts from past participants, so was looking forward to living it in real time.

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  • Liberias Blackboard Blogger

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  • collaborleaders

    Had a really interesting evening at the at abrahams event hosted by Arup on the theme of “collaborleaders”. at abrahams is curated by abrahams and Claire Curtice Publicists with this event chaired by Sophie Howarth from the School of Life. The evening highlights were Philip Sheppard playing an impromptu cello solo and then later joining Steve Lodder and John Etheridge to show how three musicians can come together and improvise a piece of music – collaboration at its best. The video below is a bit shakey – i had to improvise 😉 but watch how the three are continually watching each other – to quote one of the general observations from the evening “the non verbal communication amongst the collaborators was visible”.

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  • World Economic Forum Africa Drivers of Change

    The World Economic Forum on Africa are using our Drivers of Change voting application to solicit public opinion prior to the event on the challenges African countries need to be the most prepared for in the coming year. The highest ranked Drivers of Change will be used in a session during the event. 1200 votes had been cast by with one week to go before the public vote closes on Thursday 11th.

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  • cut n paste cities

    A global call to action and an invitation to urban dwellers to describe through photography the places and things they love about their cities, and those that they could do without.

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  • Hackday fun

    I spent the weekend at the Yahoo Hackday last week. As Crave puts it

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  • Corporate innovation network

    Thanks to David at Oracle and Roland and David at Nesta for taking the time to get together a bunch of corporate bods who are tasked in some form with trying to nurture innovation in their respective organisations. The group is still reasonable embryonic with a few different agendas becoming clear. I am keen to catch up with others to discuss what Arup are doing and to learn about the approaches and lessons learnt in other corporate contexts. At the other end of the spectrum the group were also keen to pool resources on identifying SME’s start-ups who they should be investing in “it takes too long to use normal networking techniques to monitor and assess all the new start-up out there…” Not quite sure how the latter applies in my environment yet, but one to watch.

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  • Arup Design School

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  • ETech 2009 - summary

    Excellent few days at ETech, book full of notes and lots of links in delicious, but a few memory aids for myself….

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  • ETech 2009

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  • Todays Future Designer

    Last month we were asked to pull together a short thought piece for an internal Global Buildings event at Arup on the “Future of Design”. The pre-recorded piece was being used alongside feedback from clients on their view of the value of design. Both pieces provided the introduction for break out groups to think about 4 plausible scenarios for Arup in the years ahead.

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  • Dopplr personal annual report

    Another great piece of work by Dopplr and this time it is even more personal. Just received my dopplr2008report.pdf. 50,000km traveled, away from home for 55 days and the velocity of a duck (5.73 km/h). I love the timeline that links through to the flickr images – just need to figure out how to add one in for Ambleside…

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  • Interactive Lighting Workshop

    A second interactive lighting workshop is being held at Arup, organised by Tinker with presentations from Arup, UVA and Philips Lighting.

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  • Ubiquitous Computing at a Crossroads: Art, Science, Politics and Design

    At Imperial College for a UK centric workshop on current state of the art in Ubiquitous Computing research in the UK. Most of the UK universities were represented with talks covering the Art and Design of Ubiquitous Computing, the Politics of Ubiquitous Computing (sustainability and environment issues) and the Science and Technology of Ubiquitous Computing.

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  • Forcefield Interactive

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  • Open Everything

    5th International Open Everything event, a global conversation about the art, science and spirit of ‘open’.

    (link to more...)
  • Forcefield

    A new lighting installation is up and running in Phase 2 at 8 Fitzroy Street. Worth taking a look if you get the chance.

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  • Energy Literacy - ETech 2008

    Great presentation by Saul Griffith at ETech this year. Two points stick. 25min 25sec in he compares his “low estimate” of his actual energy usage and it turns out to be much higher than all other footprints currently being used on the internet. The slide after then makes the point beautifully by suggesting the next Nobel prize for economics should be awared to the person able to accurately calculate our energy usage… The second point was 36min 40sec in. The list of what we as individuals can do was brilliant “these are all things we want to do anyway” – spot on. So why don’t we do it.

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  • links for 2008-09-09

    • hould we insure the gene pool rather than the gene?
      (tags: [convergence]( [genetech](
    • It’s about how we all lie online in terms of the way we present ourselves, or rather, that we’ve been lying about ourselves for an awful long time – how we feel, how we feel about our partners and jobs, our height, weight and age, for example – and this hasn’t changed just because technology has speeded up. According to psychologists, we tell between six and 200 lies a day in order to socialise (’I'm fine’), for play and fun, to hide misbehaviour, feel safer, feel private, feel better about the world for ourselves and to try to be more popular. There are lots of good (and bad) reasons to dissemble.
      (tags: [convergence]( [selfsurveillance](
    • It rose from the hundreds of millions of dollars in 2001, to $2.5 billion in 2002, when President Bush signed a bill funding the Department of Health and Human Services. New grants and other projects are also underway.
      (tags: [convergence]( [bioterrorism](
    • On January 10, 2002, President George W. Bush signed Bill 107-117, making more than $2.5 billion available to the Department of Health and Human Services “for emergency expenses necessary to support activities related to countering potential biological, disease and chemical threats to civilian populations.”
      (tags: [convergence]( [bioterrorism](
    • De Villepin said it was crucial for countries to pool information from their biotech labs, security agencies and hospitals to better track terrorist threats and know where to turn for help.There were now 117 countries contributing to Interpol's global database of names and photographs of suspected terrorists. The database, which held information on 2 202 people in 2001, now had the names and pictures of more than 8 000 suspects.
      (tags: [convergence]( [bioterrorism](
    • HealthMap brings together disparate data sources to achieve a unified and comprehensive view of the current global state of infectious diseases and their effect on human and animal health. This freely available Web site integrates outbreak data of varying reliability, ranging from news sources (such as Google News) to curated personal accounts (such as ProMED) to validated official alerts (such as World Health Organization). Through an automated text processing system, the data is aggregated by disease and displayed by location for user-friendly access to the original alert. HealthMap provides a jumping-off point for real-time information on emerging infectious diseases and has particular interest for public health officials and international travelers.
      (tags: [convergence]( [health](
    • The City of Toronto is committed to working with residents and businesses to reduce our greenhouse gas emissions by 80% by 2050. We're pleased to add Zerofootprint to the mix of innovative programs that make us a leader in the fight against climate change and make Toronto the greenest and most liveable city it can be.
      (tags: [convergence]( [toronto]( [resourceaccountability](
    • The Lab is dedicated to investigate the potential benefits of Ubiquitous Computing (UbiComp) technologies for a sustainable development. Our aim is to help achieve a more rational use of energy and to make resource consumption more transparent to companies and consumers.
      (tags: [convergence]( [resourceaccountability](
    • Sousveillance as well as inverse surveillance are terms coined by Steve Mann to describe the recording of an activity from the perspective of a participant in the activity, typically by way of small portable or wearable recording devices that often stream continuous live video to the Internet.
      (tags: [convergence]( [selfsurveillance](
    • Elahi was inspired to document his life like this after being detained and questioned by the FBI at an airport in 2002. He had mistakenly been placed on an FBI terrorist watch-list and was accused of storing explosives in a locker in Florida.
      (tags: [convergence]( [selfsurveillance](
    • My current project revolves around using the Arduino and the X10 home automation protocol and hardware. The gist of what I am doing with this project is using the Parallax RFID (found here) tag to identify me and then use X10 protocol/hardware (Part# 1134B from SmartHomes via Amazon) to automate my home.
      (tags: [arduino]( [x10](
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  • links for 2008-09-08

    • The use of genetic information in actuarial decision-making is not an entirely objective but an arbitrary product of the current state of research
      (tags: [convergence]( [genetech](
    • Should genetic information be disclosed to insurers?
      (tags: [convergence]( [genetech](
    • he technique involves inserting nanomagnets into monocytes – a type of white blood cell used to carry gene therapy – and injecting the cells into the bloodstream. The researchers then placed a small magnet over the tumour to create a magnetic field and found that this attracted many more monocytes into the tumour.
      (tags: [convergence]( [nbic](
    • Europe spends nearly twice as much as US on nanotech risk research
      (tags: [convergence]( [biorisk](
    • Computational neuroscience is an interdisciplinary science that links the diverse fields of neuroscience, cognitive science, electrical engineering, computer science, physics and mathematics.
      (tags: [convergence]( [neurosystems](
    • The use of biological weapons for terror is ancient. Assyrian politicians (c. 650 B.C.) dumped fungus from rye into their opponents' wells, giving them fatal ergot poisoning. Armies besieging a town relied on increased disease among the defending populace and threw dead animals into water supplies to encourage it. Fourteenth-century Tatars spread bubonic plague by catapulting diseased corpses into towns.
      (tags: [convergence]( [bioterrorism](
    • The region accounted for 44 percent of global nutraceutical sales in 2006, compared to 32 percent for North America and 14 percent for Western Europe.
      (tags: [convergence]( [nutraceutical](
    • It is estimated that global nutraceutical market is valued at over US $ 80 billion. USA holds a significant share (35%) in world nutraceutical market followed by Japan (25%). The nutraceutical market size in European Union is estimated to be US $ 8 billion, a share of 10%
      (tags: [convergence]( [nutraceutical](
    • This study analyzes the $11.7 billion world nutraceutical industry. It presents historical demand data (1995, 2000, 2005) and forecasts to 2010 and 2015 by nutraceutical product (e.g., nutrients, minerals, vitamins, herbal and non-herbal extracts), by world regional market (e.g., Asia/Pacific, Western Europe, North America) and for 36 major national markets.
      (tags: [convergence]( [nutraceutical](
    • Many consumers perceive these products as completely safe because they are often sold with labeling, suggesting that they are all-natural alternatives to prescription drug products that have been approved by FDA for treating ED," she says. "But these products may be laced with potentially hazardous ingredients that aren't noted on the label."
      (tags: [convergence]( [biotech](
    • ndustry sources value the nutraceutical segment in India at roughly $400 million (Rs 1,750 crore) and expect it to grow at approximately 20% per year.
      (tags: [convergence]( [nutraceutical](
    • As a research area, wireless sensor networks have been investigated for number of years, primarily for military purposes. However, there is increasing interest in developing such technology for civilian and commercial applications.
      (tags: [convergence]( [spimes]( [wsn]( [survey](
    • On World of Warcraft's Elune server, two players recently bought out the entire contents of the Auction House in Ironforge, with the exception of premium-priced high-level weapons and armor (e.g., they bought all the trade goods) and then resold all of what they bought at a higher price.
      (tags: [convergence]( [rss]( [mmog]( [worldofwarcraft]( [economics](
    • Instead "farming" is jargon for those that stay in one area of the game world and repeatedly kill particular monsters just to get at the coveted loot, be it arms or armour, that they drop. In Warcraft many farmers repeatedly go through the game's "instances" – stand alone dungeons – because the monsters in them are guaranteed to drop rare items. Stocked up with this loot, the farmers travel to an auction house and flog their gear for gold.
      (tags: [convergence]( [rss]( [worldofwarcraft]( [economics](
    • Can you make a real living buying and selling goods which only exist in the virtual world of an online fantasy game?
      (tags: [convergence]( [rss]( [virtualdesignplatform]( [finance](
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  • links for 2008-09-07

    • Over 100.000 people have responded to the call of GalaxyZoo to help with the classification of pictures of galaxies. The result of this mass collaboration is that every picture of galaxies that was uploaded on the site was analyzed and rated 30 times reaching high levels of validity.
      (tags: [crowdsourcing]( [convergence]( [proams]( [amateur]( [astronomer](
    • Typology of innovation Stone Yamashita
      (tags: [innovation](
    • A century of innovation 3M
      (tags: [innovation](
    • Rap inflects global popular culture from music to fashion. Linux poses a real threat to Microsoft. The Sims is among the most popular computer games ever. These far-flung developments have all been driven by Pro-Ams — committed, networked amateurs working to professional standards. Pro-Am workers, their networks and movements, will help reshape society in the next two decades.
      (tags: [convergence]( [proams]( [amateur]( [make](
    • TIME Magazine editor Richard Stengel discusses creative capitalism with Microsoft founder and philanthropist Bill Gates.
      (tags: [convergence]( [csr]( [gatesfoundation]( [newphilanthropists](
    • Bill Gates on creative capitalism and the gates foundation
      (tags: [convergence]( [csr]( [gatesfoundation]( [newphilanthropists](
    • This one-page summary highlights key facts about the foundation, including grantmaking areas, foundation leaders, locations, and statistics.
      (tags: [convergence]( [csr]( [newphilanthropists](
    • The average billionaire is worth $3.9 billion, $250 million more than last year. The superrich are also becoming younger. The average age is 61, down from 62 last year, thanks in part to big gains in Russia (average age: 46) and China (48).
      (tags: [convergence]( [csr]( [richlist](
    • This combination puts the pair at the forefront of a new wave of entrepreneurial philanthropists. They are eschewing traditional areas of giving such as the arts in favor of big global social issues, particularly poverty, health and education.
      (tags: [convergence]( [csr]( [philanthropists](
    • This list of the 100 wealthiest people is a list of the world's 100 wealthiest people as of February 11, 2008, based on each person's total net worth.
      (tags: [2008]( [business]( [convergence]( [csr]( [richlist](
    • This is a list of heads of state and government by their net worth, mostly of their liquid assets.
      (tags: [convergence]( [csr]( [richlist](
    • For this first release, I am showing how I go about making a generic particle emitter. I used Processing v.135 and Karsten Schmidt’s Vec3D library.
      (tags: [seewatt]( [processing]( [visualization]( [particle](
    • In addition to making your RSS feed available to your visitors for use with their RSS Feed Reader, as a webmaster you may also want to make the same feed available on your website for viewing with a regular web browser.
      (tags: [web]( [rss]( [php](
    • a list of great examples of self surveillance
      (tags: [convergence]( [selfsurveillance](
    • The Flare Dependency Graph uses a circular graph layout with edge bundling to show which classes import which other classes in the Flare toolkit.
      (tags: [flex]( [visualization]( [circulargraph](
    (link to more...)
  • Bop Making Sense of Space – Summary

    BOP – Making Sense of Space was a £1 million, two-year, multidisciplinary project, funded by the UK government’s Technology Strategy Board. It investigated how ubiquitous computing, using wireless sensor networks (WSN), could be used to create a better understanding of the creative workplace. The project ended in December last year but I am still finalising the last few *project management* items.

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  • links for 2008-09-01

    • The Flare Dependency Graph uses a circular graph layout with edge bundling to show which classes import which other classes in the Flare toolkit.
      (tags: [flex]( [visualization]( [circulargraph](
    • Project Faraday's main objective was to develop exemplar designs to inform and inspire all those involved in renewing or refurbishing their science facilities, particularly those involved in major capital programmes such as Building Schools for the Future (BSF) and Academies.
      (tags: [faraday](
    • Eco-eye real-time electricity monitors literally ‘keep an eye’ on the total amount of electricity coming into your home and constantly display this information in a user-friendly way.
      (tags: [energy]( [meter](
    (link to more...)
  • links for 2008-08-31

    • Co-author of the 2006 and 2007 Fact Books here. Although PFF does have an agenda, little of that agenda affects how the Fact Book is written. The main goal is to summarize all the free information about the digital economy that's out there and condense it into one file.
      (tags: [technology]( [research]( [convergence](
    • Using mobile technology to deliver mobile microcredit services overcomes previously limiting restrictions of space and time by using existing infrastructure to give even the most impoverished to access financial services.
      (tags: [mobile]( [finance]( [convergence](
    • “This six-part, three-hour, BBC TV series aired in 1997. I presented and co-wrote the series; it was directed by James Muncie, with music by Brian Eno. The series was based on my 1994 book, HOW BUILDINGS LEARN: What Happens After They’re Built.
      (tags: [video]( [buildings]( [design](
    • This is a write-up of my diploma project in interaction design from the Oslo School of Architecture and Design. The project is entitled ‘Adventures in Urban Computing’ and this weblog post contains a brief project description and a pdf of the diploma report.
      (tags: [urbancomputing]( [convergence]( [ubiquitouscomputing](
    • I hope you'll consider joining me on Blog Action Day on October 15 this year. It's a day for bloggers around the world to all discuss one topic to raise awareness where attention is needed. Last year, 20,000 bloggers took part to discuss the environment. This year's topic is poverty, and of course, we should all know by now that data visualization can play a huge role in showing that.
      (tags: [poverty]( [doc](
    • This IDTechEx report comprehensively analyzes the technologies, players and markets with detailed ten year forecasts, including tag numbers, unit prices and interrogator numbers and prices.
      (tags: [rfid]( [foresight]( [convergence]( [spime](
    • Welcome to IMA Dashboard, an ongoing effort to measure various aspects of the Museum's performance. To navigate the Dashboard in particular areas, the tabs at the top of the screen drop down to allow for more detail. The goal of the Dashboard is to seek to quantify and report out on areas of activity of general interest to museum observers and to particular interest to museum studies specialists, colleagues, and patrons
      (tags: [visualization]( [seewatt]( [energy](
    • Blog by Jemima at iKnowHow – "Right now, I’m writing a book for Triarchy Press on the impact of web 2.0 technologies on business leadership." When people ask what it’s actually about, I find myself coming up with a slightly different answer every time:
      (tags: [management]( [innovation](
    • The WWF have just published a report on the UK's water footprint. "This report tells the important but largely unknown story of the water we use and where it comes from. More importantly, it highlights the impact of the UK’s consumption patterns on water resources across the world. WWF’s intention in publishing this report is to start a debate about how UK-based organisations can help to ensure that critical, and often scarce, water resources are managed wisely."
      (tags: [water](
    • nokia community site brings together phones, gps, mapping and health / fitness – with gprs even allows love tracking of where you are on the route – is that so that your partner can make sure you have not collapsed or so that a sales reps movements can be tracked…
      (tags: [convergence]( [n95]( [maps]( [health]( [gps](
    • Nokia Sports Tracker is a GPS based activity tracker that runs on S60 smartphones. Information such as speed, distance and time are automatically stored to your training diary. To be able to use application for real, you need Nokia S60 3.0 or 3.1 phone with Bluetooth GPS device or Nokia S60 3.0 or 3.1 phone with integrated GPS.
      (tags: [convergence]( [n95]( [maps]( [health](
    • current TV's guide to how to make videos
      (tags: [faraday]( [splashtv](
    • A place for schools to upload and share videos
      (tags: [faraday]( [splashtv](
    • A site collecting how to videos…
      (tags: [tutorials]( [faraday]( [splashtv](
    • Film: 21st Century Literacy aims to bring greater coherence and consistency to the provision of film education in the UK so children and young people have equal opportunities to watch, understand and make films.
      (tags: [faraday]( [splashtv](
    • website for teaching about film media and film making
      (tags: [video]( [film]( [faraday]( [splashtv](
    (link to more...)
  • links for 2008-08-18

    • great collection of science videos
      (tags: [video]( [science]( [faraday]( [splashtv](
    • If you're looking for advice and tips on how to make documentaries, these guides provide useful information on how to plan, shoot and edit your documentary.
      (tags: [video]( [howto]( [faraday]( [splashtv](
    • "Great idea to video his experiment. I did this in a teacher's workshop a couple of years ago. We also learned about the scientific principle behind the experiment too"
      (tags: [faraday]( [splashtv](
    • How to… Edit. Shaping your film, putting scenes together…
      (tags: [video]( [tutorial]( [howto]( [bbc]( [faraday]( [splashtv](
    • Edge Futures are a series of five books that explore the impact that climate change will have on different aspects of our lives in the future. They are available to order as individual titles or as a complete set.
      (tags: [books]( [future]( [city]( [education]( [knowledge](
    (link to more...)
  • links for 2008-08-14

    • It’s not just about presenting data in a presentation. Infovis also helps us find and understand things quicker With the growing implementation of electronic dashboards, we need to learn how to create effective visual representations of data
      (tags: [visualization]( [tools]( [resource]( [reference](
    (link to more...)
  • links for 2008-08-13 []

    • GFN is a free, community-edited, nonprofit ASF initiative to find and connect our planet's 1) foresight professionals, 2) future-oriented specialists, and 3) foresight/futures educators, and use and improve social networks and Web 2.0 tools for advancing (via gonzalo)
      (tags: [foresight]( [socialnetwork](
    (link to more...)
  • links for 2008-05-28

    • Here you will find a list of coldfusion related projects being developed within
      (tags: [coldfusion](
    • Java and ColdFusion libraries to lookup country code and language from IP address. It uses a local copy of the WHOIS database to perform fast, accurate lookups of country codes. Useful for log analysis, internationalization, geolocation, etc.
      (tags: [coldfusion]( [geotagging](
    • A compact development framework for Adobe ColdFusion applications, implementing an MVC design pattern for web applications. CFRhino has both an event and extension frameworks allowing it to be fully extended.
      (tags: [coldfusion]( [mvc](
    • CFRSS is a fast and adaptable Coldfusion 7 CFC used to parse and create RSS. It is able to handle various formats and can be easily modified to handle new ones.
      (tags: [coldfusion]( [rss](
    • ColdFusion GIS tool library.
      (tags: [coldfusion]( [gis](
    (link to more...)
  • links for 2008-05-24

    • Mike Liebhold a veteran technologist now at Silicon Valley’s Institute for the Future, calls it a “3D data arms race”, with some of the biggest technology companies rushing to amass vast libraries of information describing the world in painstaking d
      (tags: [geoweb]( [maps]( [convergence]( [sensei](
    (link to more...)
  • links for 2008-05-22

    • This work reports on the findings of a field study examining the current use practices of large ambient information displays in public settings. – ethnogrphic study of large public displays
      (tags: [display]( [ethnography]( [information]( [publicspaces](
    • UPS uses GPS to “minimize the number of left turns… reduces idling which in turn lowers fuel consumption… multiply it across 88,0000 vehicles making nearly 15 million deliveries every day during the course of a year, it adds up.”
      (tags: [convergence]( [gps]( [ubiquitouscomputing](
    • Janine Benyus describes how biomimicry works, pointing to its origins in early human history. She explains how and why western industrial nations are only now rediscovering the profound implications that biomimicry has for the future of design.
      (tags: [biomimicry]( [convergence](
    (link to more...)
  • links for 2008-05-21

    • The role of technology in supporting and enhancing our relationships with(in) the settings we inhabit and designing interactions that can sustain affective and diverse cultural and environmental life-experiences.
      (tags: [hci]( [conference]( [2008]( [ubiquitouscomputing](
    (link to more...)
  • links for 2008-05-20

    • SoundBite is the quickest and easiest way to create great-sounding playlists in iTunes. Once installed, SoundBite will get to know your music collection and when it’s done, you’re ready to create playlists to suit your mood.
      (tags: [music]( [playlist]( [itunes]( [generator](
    • Every six months, the Materials Research Society celebrates the most eye-catching images found in the course of their researchers’ studies — celebrating the serendipitous convergence of science and art.
      (tags: [convergence]( [nanotech]( [biotech]( [visualization](
    (link to more...)
  • CO2 footprint from travel - dopplr

    Great addition to the already great Dopplr tool. Am just about to expend the significant part of this years carbon footprint…

    (link to more...)
  • links for 2008-05-11

    • An exhibition critically exploring the evolving relationship between ubiquitous/pervasive computing and urban architecture – SUBMISSION DEADLINE: June 27, 2008
      (tags: [architecture]( [competition]( [ubiquitouscomputing](
    • DMX512 – DMX512 (Digital MultipleXed) is an agreement over the connection between lighting controllers, dimmers,scrollers, scanners, etc.. base page for workshop info
      (tags: [dmx]( [arduino]( [lighting](
    • Weather RSS feeds in half hour periods.
      (tags: [weather]( [seewatt](
    • Interactive Light – DMX Receiver Documentation (beta) DMX PWM converter Code Examples We’re going to be using the DMX shield for arduino to generate DMX signals
      (tags: [arduino]( [dmx]( [lighting](
    (link to more...)
  • links for 2008-05-08

    • Data Analysis and Visualization with Excel, R and Google Tools Analysis, Chart and Map Tools to Better Understand Our Data
      (tags: [excel]( [visualization](
    (link to more...)
  • links for 2008-05-06

    • Flare is a collection of ActionScript 3 classes for building a wide variety of interactive visualizations.
      (tags: [flash]( [actionscript]( [flex]( [visualization]( [as3](
    (link to more...)
  • links for 2008-05-03

    • Walking with Robots is a three-year programme of public events funded by the EPSRC that aims to address: What is a Robot? What do we want robots to do in the future? What can they do now? Can robots have personalities?…
      (tags: [convergence]( [robotics](
    (link to more...)

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  • links for 2008-05-01

    • Sixth Framework EC, April 2006 – March 2009. The challenges raised by NBIC convergence call for renewed, informed and democratized knowledge politics. relevant to all concerned about the political, social and ethical implications of emerging technologies.
      (tags: [convergence]( [nbic]( [nanotech]( [biotech](
    • Convergence Culture Henry Jenkins ISBN 0814742815 336 pages Henry Jenkins at Authors@Google (video)
      (tags: [books]( [convergence]( [culture]( [media](
    (link to more...)
  • links for 2008-04-30

    • data feed from house automation system to twitter – good example of using other peoples notification systems to get your data “out there” – i think there is a how to in Make Feb 2008
      (tags: [twitter]( [sensei]( [pwte]( [energy](
    • helping ensure that as nanotechnologies advance, possible risks are minimized, public and consumer engagement remains strong + the potential of these new technologies are realized. Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars / Pew Charitable Trusts
      (tags: [convergence]( [nanotech](
    • WASHINGTON – The Project on Emerging Nanotechnologies and National Science Foundation will host the Washington, DC, premiere event for the television series “Nanotechnology: The Power of Small”
      (tags: [convergence]( [nanotech](
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  • links for 2008-04-27

    • We drew on a simple insight that in the not too distant future humanity will have extracted and worked much of the valuable minerals once buried in planet Earth. We will be compelled to reuse and celebrate what is essentially “above ground”.
      (tags: [convergence]( [craft]( [sustainability]( [recycling]( [waste](
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  • links for 2008-04-25

    • Reducing energy usage, an office case study by Dave Farebrother FEI Environmental Director – pdf of slides from energy institute presentation. A case study from an office in London, UK
      (tags: [seewatt]( [energy]( [pwte]( [bop](
    • Buildings 2.0 a grand vision of the future of internet-centric buildings. Following two years of industry roundtables, in 2008 BuilConn will host an industry discussion on the subject of green energy, sustainability, and the role that Buildings 2.0
      (tags: [pwte]( [seewatt]( [energy]( [wsn]( [bms]( [sustainability](
    • Interactive institute’s Design Research Unit is happy to announce that funding has been granted from STEM (Energimyndigheten/The Swedish Energy Agency) to launch the project ‘SWITCH! Energy Ecologies in Everyday Life’….
      (tags: [seewatt]( [energy]( [visualization]( [pwte](
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  • links for 2008-04-23

    • Reading local energy consumption on the cloud. The kW values shows the actual level on consumption in Ruoholahti & Lauttasaari. The % value shows the percentage of 41,000kW, which is the estimated peak consumption for the last week of February 2008.
      (tags: [energy]( [visualization]( [monitoring]( [sensei]( [seewatt](
    • The United Nations Statistics Division (UNSD) of the Department of Economic and Social Affairs (DESA) – UN statistical databases through a single entry point. Users can now search and download a variety of statistical resources of the UN system.
      (tags: [statistics]( [data]( [un]( [visualization]( [foresight](
    • Data visualization, the art of using visual thinking to understand complex information, is a growing trend–but it also has an illustrious history.
      (tags: [visualization]( [information](
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  • links for 2008-04-19

    • senZations’08 summer school will be held in Serbia this summer.The school will be supported by the EU funded FP7 Prosense project
      (tags: [sensei]( [wsn](
    • Oct 29-31, 2008 in Zurich, Switzerland. Techniques, algorithms, architectures, protocols, and user aspects, underlying context-aware smart surroundings, and cooperating intelligent objects, and their applications to provide context-aware smart assistance.
      (tags: [conference]( [wsn]( [2008]( [sensei](
    • In the context of convergence, the 17th ICT Mobile and Wireless Communications Summit will address the challenges of Future Ubiquitous Networks based on mobile and wireless communications, complemented with fixed infrastructures. (SENSEI have booth here)
      (tags: [sensei]( [convergence]( [wsn]( [conference]( [2008](
    • The 2009-10 Programme for ICT research in EU’s FP7 will be presented in detail. Other sources of EU research funding for ICT will also be examined (JTIs CIP) representing more than €2 billion in EU support for ICT research over the next two years.
      (tags: [sensei]( [conference]( [2008]( [ict]( [convergence](
    • The first Future Internet Symposium will take place 28-30 September 2008 in Vienna, Austria. The programme will be international in scope, and focused on research, especially that which crosses the traditional boundaries of our field.
      (tags: [sensei]( [conference]( [2008](
    • SENSEI (Integrating the Physical with the Digital World of the Network of the Future) is an Integrated Project in the EU’s FP7, in the ICT Challenge 1: Pervasive and Trusted Network and Service Infrastructures: ICT-2007.1.1: The Network of the Future.
      (tags: [sensei](
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  • links for 2008-04-17

    • a collection of links to telco futures via Olivier in Sensei project. Interesting movie from Nokia on nantechnology from their Cambridge Labs – aim is to tell the rest of Nokia and the outside world what their R&D labs are doing
      (tags: [sensei]( [nanotech]( [convergence]( [telecoms](
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  • H3 Interactive Lighting workshop

    We have been working with here in London in organising a few workshops around Arduino. The first is on Interactive Lighting and will involve a mix of presentations on current state of the art and building some simple protoypes. Guest talks include our own Francesco Anselmo, Massimo Banzi from and Daniel Hirschmann from Jason Bruges Studio. The giveaway swag to all attendees include a DMX controller and a DMX shield for Arduino.

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  • links for 2008-04-11

    • Swedish industrial company decided to outsource the energy management to a specialist firm, setting the straightforward goals: “Room temperature should be adjusted to a suitable and verified living climate, and what is not needed should be shut off.”
      (tags: [energy]( [wsn]( [sensei](
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  • links for 2008-04-04

    • A Flex data visualisation for a WSN trial held at Arup over the summer of 2007.
      (tags: [arup]( [visualization]( [bop](
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  • links for 2008-04-03

    • The Doing Business project… provides objective measures of business regulations and their enforcement across 178 countries and selected cities at the subnational and regional level. (via Alice Clarke)
      (tags: [business]( [statistics]( [data](
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  • links for 2008-04-02

    • The calculation requires daily measurements of maximum and minimum outside air temperatures and a ‘base temperature’ Tbase, nominated by the user as an estimate of the outside air temperature at which no artificial heating (or cooling) is required.
      (tags: [environment]( [degreedays]( [temperature]( [energy]( [seewatt](
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  • links for 2008-04-01

    • *The virtual-water content of a product (a commodity, good or service) is the volume of freshwater used to produce the product, measured at the place where the product was actually produced* – useful for other representations of water usage
      (tags: [visualization]( [seewatt]( [water](
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  • story of stuff

    Chris posted a link to the story of stuff 20 min video last week. I am re-blogging for two reasons. First it is a really well put together video and a great information piece covering many of the issues I hear the Drivers of Change researchers talking about in a CONNECTED way. Second, the story of stuff website is an excellent example of making it really easy for other people to use your work such as the section on *host a screening* or the provision of embeddable video like this:

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  • IRC: The Myths of Innovation by Scott Berkun

    Have just finished pulling together and writing up the second in a series of internal Arup workshops on innovation. The series are sponsored by our Europe Region Design and Technical Executive and are aimed at stimulating thought around innovation amongst some of our senior leaders. It was fun to research the *overview of innovation* presentation since it has been a few years since I have had to talk about this stuff. One book I came across was The Myths of Innovation by Scott Berkun. (I actually picked up a free copy of this book at Scifoo 2007 but had not read it until recently). I loved the stories around the myths and found it a very useful way to describe the effort that normally goes into innovating. I couldn’t attend the innovation reading circle meeting around this book but Nico has a great overview page as per usual and links to a Googletalk by Scott Berkun which is worth a watch if you don’t like reading books…

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  • links for 2008-02-28

    • The new web forum to support the European discussions on the Internet of the future is now available. Within FP7, the EU has over 60 projects addressing Future Internet issues. These projects represent a combined investment of over 400 million euros
      (tags: [internet]( [research]( [sensei]( [convergence](
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  • links for 2008-02-22

    • Scott Berkun doing tech talk at Google on his book tour from the Myths of Innovation. Nice overview of parts of the book and reminded me of a couple of themes I need to build into Arup innovation material. The book gives you more so worth a read…
      (tags: [innovation]( [video]( [books](
    (link to more...)
  • links for 2008-02-21

    • For anyone interested in Dopplr and who didn’t had the chance to try it out, here’s an interesting presentation from Matt Jones he presented at Reboot 9.0.
      (tags: [convergence]( [dopplr](
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  • links for 2008-02-14

    • Very cool – just works… “Use a simple web form, email participants, visually juggle constraints, presto: the precise opposite of all the meeting scheduling software that no one uses! 100% free; 100% private; no registration; no setup; no hassle.”
      (tags: [calendar]( [collaboration]( [software](
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  • links for 2008-02-04

    • Tigoe: “I’ve been looking for simple ways to graph the data from a sensor attached to a microcontroller lately, because it’s such a necessary activity if you want to look at sensor data over time.” very handy
      (tags: [arduino]( [graphing](
    • lecture theme this year is “From Ideation to Innovation,” and I used the theme as an opportunity to describe our recent projects, including our work with the Henry Ford, and our products, and the theoretical framework that we’re developing to think about
      (tags: [ubiquitouscomputing]( [convergence]( [physical\_computing](
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  • links for 2008-02-02

    • As the UN specialized agency for telecommunications, ITU collects the most comprehensive range of statistics on Information and Communication Technology penetration, accessibility and use.
      (tags: [data]( [mobile]( [research]( [statistics]( [convergence](
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  • links for 2008-01-30

    • The Common Craft Show is a series of short explanatory videos produced on our own time. Great one to explain to your mum what a blog is or social bookmarking.
      (tags: [blogs]( [video]( [training]( [youtube](
    • We made this video for our friends (and yours) that haven’t yet felt the power of our friend the RSS reader. We want to convert people-if you know someone who would love RSS and hasn’t yet tried it, point them here for 3.5 minutes of RSS in Plain English.
      (tags: [rss]( [video]( [tutorials](
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  • links for 2008-01-29

    • This compilation of energy and environment related indicators and statistical data has been assembled from open sources that are available on the Internet.
      (tags: [convergence]( [dataenergy]( [seewatt](
    (link to more...)
  • links for 2008-01-28

    • The Stanford University Bio-X program supports, organizes, and facilitates interdisciplinary research connected to biology, medicine, engineering, information sciences, physics and chemistry.
      (tags: [Stanford]( [bioengineering]( [convergence]( [holistic](
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  • links for 2008-01-27

    • Taking its name from the immersive virtual world imagined by Neal Stephenson in his visionary novel, Snow Crash, the Metaverse Roadmap (MVR) is the first public ten-year forecast and visioning survey of 3D Web technologies, applications, markets, and pote
      (tags: [convergence]( [metaverse]( [transmedia]( [cim](
    (link to more...)
  • links for 2008-01-26

    • Useful site collecting audio from all the main speakers at events such emerging technology, poptech, where2.0 and items such as *interviews with innovators* – one for the ipod commute
      (tags: [audio]( [technology]( [podcasts]( [innovation]( [convergence](
    • “[presented at] TED conference in 2006. I think he does a good job of explaining how mentally immersive games are becoming. (Reading a book about a war is nothing like being in that war.)” – this 22 yr old drove 25k real and 35k virtual miles-great video
      (tags: [convergence]( [transmedia]( [games]( [learning](
    • Google tech talk April 2007. World-renowned Science Fiction writer and futurist Bruce Sterling will outline his ideas for SPIMES, a form of ubiquitous computing that gives smarts and ‘searchabiliity’ to even the most mundane of physical products.
      (tags: [video]( [spime]( [sterling]( [convergence](
    (link to more...)
  • links for 2008-01-23

    • great example of documenting and presenting what you have done. A fair amount of data capture must have been going on through out the year…. maybe some inspiration for our internal end of year investment report…..
      (tags: [design]( [visualization]( [charting](
    • Excellent write up by Dan of his talk at Interesting South, Sydney. If you want to understand why i am measuring *stuff* or what is that i am doing then read this.
      (tags: [ubiquitouscomputing]( [convergence]( [wsn](
    • Van der Heide also draws clients into the creative mix. “If you go to the theater, why is it beautiful? It’s the magic of sharing the moment…. interesting interview with Rogier VdH
      (tags: [architecture]( [arup]( [lighting]( [convergence](
    • This is a site for large data sets and the people who love them: the scrapers and crawlers who collect them, the academics and geeks who process them, the designers and artists who visualize them.
      (tags: [data]( [visualization]( [datasets]( [programming]( [web2.0](
    (link to more...)
  • links for 2008-01-12

    • two interesting documents from e-Sense project on “User’s expectation, technological roadmaps and business cases analysis” and “Scenarios and audio visual concepts”. Also a collection of AV demos in flash describing the scenarios used. Useful for Sensei
      (tags: [wsn]( [e-sense]( [sensei]( [scenarios](
    (link to more...)
  • Pervasive Computing at Arup

    The end of 2007 saw the final conference for the DTI Bop project. There has been a number of PR items around it including airtime on BBC Radio 5 (on the morning of the conference) and BBC Radio 4’s Today programme. It also appeared in Design Week. The move into 2008 means the two DTI / TSB projects we have been working on applying wireless sensor networks within an office environment are coming to a close but two new projects are starting up.

    (link to more...)
  • links for 2008-01-10

    • …According to Duncan Wilson, who describes himself as a ‘futurist’ at engineering group and Bop partner Arup, there are commercial benefits to be gained from applying pervasive computing technologies to the design of working environments….
      (tags: [bop]( [office]( [designweek](
    • While there may be a new generation that thinks that email is for old fogies, for many of us, email is a primary online tool, at least as important to us as the web. Many of us no longer file documents or attachments — we just search for them again in ou
      (tags: [email]( [markmail](
    • Have just started to use Xobni Insight and after a week of use the verdict is great – finally a tool that helps me to understand the how I use the application I consistently spend most of my time in. …[It] is an add-on for Microsoft Outlook that offers
      (tags: [email]( [outlook]( [socialnetworks](
    • just arrived via Amazon – looking forward to getting some weekend time to play with this book…
      (tags: [physical\_computing]( [books](
    (link to more...)
  • Service resumed!

    two months later, two additions to the family (Aoife and Orla) and hopefully the blog posts will start again.

    (link to more...)
  • Walking the digital dog - IET

    Went to the IET at Savoy Place last night to listen to Roo Reynold’s Mountbatten Lecture (30th in the series and still in his 20’s, just, Roo is the youngest Mountbatten speaker by a good 20 years…)

    (link to more...)
  • Bop Conference – London

    entrance area to CSM innovation centre

    (link to more...)
  • love


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  • Poptech update

    Voting closed on the poptech voter after 4500 votes cast…

    (link to more...)
  • Poptech votes on drivers of change

    Chris was at Poptech 2007 last week. Great blog coverage at blogginglive and a nice post by Ethan Zuckerman. Chris used the DoC voting app to canvass opinion on current drivers. The top votes (today) with 85 are Peak Oil and Climate Change with US Fascism taking 59…

    (link to more...)
  • Future of Imaging - UCL Advances with support from NESTA

    Summary from afternoon event at UCL on the future of imaging. Organised by UCL Advances, left half way through afternoon, got a bit fed up with the hard sell on how well academia can solve all industries research needs. Had planned to listen to the Space Syntax talk but missed it. Notes below.

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  • H3 RFID workshop at Arup

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  • Supply Chain, Logistics and Marketing forum - Aurora

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  • Heat in the Librarything

    Two posts in one here… first is to say that I am finally starting to use to keep a record of all the books i am looking it (if they haven’t got a star rating it means i have not quite finished the book yet…) Second I will also be using it to try and store some reviews such as this review of Heat.

    (link to more...)
  • IRC: wisdom of the crowd

    I had fun reading the Wisdom of Crowds by James Surowiecki. It had been on the list to read for a while since the ideas in it (at least from what I had heard) reflected the strategy we had used in creating the Drivers of Change programme at Arup. If you go and speak to enough people then themes (drivers) that concern them start to emerge. The Drivers of Change 2006 book and the upcoming *Rainbow* set are the result of this collective wisdom. Here is my review.

    (link to more...)
  • Scifoo day 2

    Andrew Walkingshaw – *sketching* data by creating simple query interfaces based on structured data repositories. Had similarities to the Bricks framework. Generated quite a discussion around how and who should be marking up the content. I liked one of Tim O’Reilly’s comments *you need to create the context for a set of interactions* and then gave an example of not just asking parents to contribute to a wiki about baseball games, rather provide them with a system that has all the structure of the little league games, info on who is playing when etc, and then *allow* the parents to upload information such as commentary, photos, organisational data etc *what ever they choose*. Just sitting and listening to all the real examples being cited had my head racing with ideas that i would love to implement on the internal Arup investment and technical news websites.

    (link to more...)
  • Scifoo day 1

    154 sessions to choose from – hmmm, how do i do that…

    (link to more...)
  • iphone magic

    Couldn’t resist this. Played with the iPhone in Apple Store, SF. The touch interface including typing is pretty cool and the web page navigation was pretty useful – e.g. tap to resize to column width. You end up just trying gestures and they work. The resizing of images etc was very nice. So, when can we get one….

    (link to more...)
  • Scifoo Day 0

    The best bit about conferences is actually the time you get to spend with people over lunch, in the breaks and in the bar in the evening. The sci foo events are designed to so that all the time is spent doing those three things…

    (link to more...)
  • DoC Convergence

    Work has finally started on my first set of Drivers of Change cards. The theme is convergence and has been identified by many delegates in the foresight workshops as a key Driver of Change. The first step is to start talking to people to try and unpack what this driver might mean. Below is my starting point, postings in this thread over the next six months with document my conversations around this theme. All comments and inputs welcome!!

    (link to more...)
  • Innovation stimulator

    Inspired by what i saw at product design firms like IDEO and manufacturers like 3M we tried to set-up a materials showcase in R&D at Arup. The basic idea was to collate samples of interesting materials, technology or even products and have them on display around our offices / project areas. It never quite established the inertia required to keep it living. Stumbled across inventables today via the SciFoo wiki – sounds like a great venture…

    (link to more...)
  • Sci Foo Camp


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  • Clima2007 keynote


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  • mass customisation of my feet

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  • What the World Eats | Photo Essays | TIME

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  • Crossbow / Microsoft .NET imote pack

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  • Drivers of Change briefing - Arup Campus, Solihull, June 2007

    The FII team have just completed an impressive briefing (I can be complementary since I was not involved…) at the Arup General Annual Meeting (150 of the firms directors). Chris did a brief intro talking about how “change is constant, context is variable – our work is about looking at our future contexts” and how we use an approach the focuses on “gut + heart + head – we think in that order. we have an idea about what is important, we focus on things we believe in, and finally we analyse to understand the implications of our assumptions”.

    (link to more...)
  • Networked Embedded and Control Systems

    Spoke at ICT Call 2 Information Day – Hotel Carrefour de l’Europe 110, Rue Marché aux Herbes 1000 Brussels, Presentations have been uploaded to the agenda webpage.

    (link to more...)
  • Flights

    Nice example of time lapse photo. Posted on Flickr but saw via everyoneforever – amazing photograph currently showing at the Seoul City Museum in South Korea.

    (link to more...)
  • Sound Business - Julian Treasure

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  • Wattson 105 - measuring electrical usage

    Received the Wattson from DIYKyoto last week and had a quick install at home to see how it works. It has been running for 10 days and no problems so far but have not downloaded any data yet – software is to be delivered. Install was extremely simple, just clamp the current transducer (or is it a transformer?) around one of the two wires between the house electricity meter and fuse box and then turn on the wattson. Was very interesting when we first turned it on to see how many *hidden* appliances were running. Managed to get from 600 watts down to 80 watts by turning things off standby, however notice that it seems to average 700-800 watts in the evening. Max to date has been about 2500 watts when the dishwasher was on… Next step is to install it in Arup to monitor office appliance use…

    (link to more...)
  • Haringey interactive heat loss map

    Nice project for Haringey Council by Hot Mapping and Horton Levi. The aerial survey measured heat loss from every property by taking thermal images. The council claim this piece of work was completed for under 21k GBP. My house is shown circled below – not bad considering our poor level of insulation – but i did not live here (in 2000) and cannot be sure if, for example, any heating was on when Horton-Levi conducted the aerial thermal survey of the whole of London. More info.

    (link to more...)
  • RealCosts - visualising flight CO2 costs

    Plugin for firefox that allows you to see the C02 impact of your journey WHILST you search for flights using you favorite website (US focus at mo so i had to use soon to come is a version for car directions… The calculations they are using are available on the project wiki

    (link to more...)
  • visualising C0 from cars

    Nice example of tangibly making the invisible visible. On the balloon it says: Drive one day less and look how much carbon monoxide you’ll keep out of the air we breath. [via infoaesthetics]

    (link to more...)
  • Activity Space Research, The Chadwick Project

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  • IET talk on Bop and CMIPS

    Video of DW presentation at IET Wireless Sensor Networks Conference

    (link to more...)
  • future leaders survey

    54000 responses to the survey – pretty good sample size… look at what the crowd of 18-21 year olds are saying about our world in 2031- thanks to Caf for the link.

    (link to more...)
  • engineers at the top

    In 2005 all members of the Chinese Politburo were engineers

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  • IRC: The social shaping of technology

    The third innovation reading circle reviewed The Shock of the Old: Technology and Global History since 1900 by Professor David Edgerton (Profile Books, 2007) Held at the offices of LBi near Angel. The session was chaired by Nico with an introduction to his book from David.

    (link to more...)
  • Arduino BT PIR sensor

    Finally got the Arduino BT PIR working and installed in Central Saint Martins and pushing data to the data server. Some photos are on Flickr and more will follow. The Arduino code used is here and a processing app to view the data being sent over the BT serial here. I ended up using a Perl script on the live installation. I will post that once I extract it from the installation.

    (link to more...)
  • DoC cards review

    A kind review of our Drivers of Change cards at Chip Overclock™ blog. Nice to be compared alongside Brian Eno, Tom Peters and IDEO.

    (link to more...)
  • London Events

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  • Eco Chic or Eco Geek

    Came across this report at Sponge a *sustainabilty development network for property and construction professionals in the UK* via the developing news blog. The MORI report commisioned by Sponge looked at the demand for zero carbon development. An interesting shift in public opinion reports that 64% of homeowners want sustainable features to be compulsory for all new homes but also they are willing to pay more for these features or services. Of interest: 44% don’t know how much they spend on utilities per month; 40% of people were willing to pay up to £25 per month for sustainable features.

    (link to more...)
  • Podcast: A discussion with Chris Luebkeman, Director for Global Foresight -Innovation, Arup Group, London - McGraw-Hill Construction | ENR

    []( “Podcast: A discussion with Chris Luebkeman, Director for Global Foresight & Innovation, Arup Group, London - McGraw-Hill Construction ENR”)
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  • NRF - DOC voting results


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  • Bop project website


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  • IRC: user-led innovation

    The second innovation reading circle event theme was User-led innovation. The titles discussed were:

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  • Photographing smoke

    I wish i could do this….

    (link to more...)
  • bop_event_2

    The second public workshop of the DTI project Arup are leading. Drop me a line if you want to attend…

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  • National Retail Federation Conference

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  • 2006_1015_1021_light_temp_colour

    Starting to think about how to view the sensor network data at a macro level. This sample (one week) shows 20 nodes day by day. Temperature on the y axis (and colour), time on x, alpha level showing amount of light.

    (link to more...)
  • Crossbow MTS410 Nov 2006 G13

    sample data file from crossbow network.

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  • Path Intelligence - tracking people in retail

    Met with guys from Path Intelligence today. They are aiming at the holy grail of being able to track people in retail spaces without any kind of intervention being required (e.g. people wearing tags). They are using mobile phones as the tag (penetration in the UK is over 100%!!) and are measuring signal strength from radio beacons set-up around the venue. The volumes of data collected present some interesting data visualisation problems…

    (link to more...)
  • Corian - led pong

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  • LAb[au] - Dexia Tower - Brussels

    Nice example of an interactive facade and building as a device that can be altered by the public. What makes this different from other similar projects is the fact that you can interact with the building *screen* via a kiosk. A distant camera then takes a picture of your artwork and emails it to you. Visit the site to see what images others created.

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  • Drawing water challenge

    This competition, aimed at finding an original idea that could help many impoverished people gain access to safe water and effective sanitation, needs your creativity and enthusiasm. There are many ways to get involved – participate by proposing a new solution, or promote the competition, encouraging others to help make a difference.

    (link to more...)
  • the darfur wall

    This came via infoaestheitcs blog – what a great visualisation…

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  • European Construction Technology Platform Conference

    In Versaille at the European Construction Technology Platform (ECTP) conference. The ECTP has been created to establish a voice for the european constuction sector with the European Commission (EC) and in particular at the moment Framework 7 funding. The days were a mix of EC representative presentations, member presentations (from industry and academy) and a series of brokerage events around the 7 focus areas of the platform (networking opportunities to support the creation of collaborative projects). The focus areas are: innovative use of underground space, a living cultural heritage for an attractive Europe, ICT supported new integrated processes for the consturction sector, high added value construction materials, resource efficient and clean buildings, sustainable management of transport and utility networks, environment and quality of life for all. (Arup are coordinating the ICT processes focus area with VTT and facilitated the brokerage workshop in quite a bizarre room – Salle Lulli in the Palais des Congres)

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  • City Centre Retail

    Coming up in the pipeline of the *of the future* series of workshops is on the subject of station retail. We have started work with the Narrative Environments students at CSM to create a series of future narratives around this theme. First design crit was held today and work is progressing – research is being posted at the fii delicious account

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  • Innovation Reading Circle

    Nico Macdonald did an excellent job of hosting the first Innovation Reading Circle today. The theme was sustainability, design and society, and the main title to be discussed was *In the Bubble: Designing in a Complex World* John Thackara and Bruce Sterlings *The Shape of Things To Come*

    (link to more...)
  • WorkTech06

    Attended WorkTech06 conference and exhibition on 7.11.06 at the British Library in London. It all sounded familiar and cannot point to anything new that stood out from the day, but was great to be inside the British Library – a great venue. The day was charied very well by Jeremy Myerson (Director of Innovation RCA) and it was good to hear Charles Handy presenting although I found myself disagreeing with his idea that the future of the corporate HQ is nearing its end. I like coming to work where there are other like minded / spirited people (i also like working at home and public spaces such as this Eurostar…). James Woudhuysen gave an excellent closing presentation / rant – just a pity Charles wasn’t there to respond…

    (link to more...)
  • innovations in washing

    I thought this was urban myth but maybe not, anyway, good story from our current chairman…

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  • PhD: Ambient and ubiquitous designs for context-aware navigation

    This is a fully funded three year PhD studentship in collaboration with ARUP. The overall aim of the project is to explore ways in which navigation services can be personalised and made more context-aware. This studentship will provide a very exciting opportunity for a dedicated individual to advance their knowledge and skills in this cutting edge area.

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  • we think - draft book for comment

    Charles Leadbeater was a speaker at our first Hotel of the Future conference back in 2002. He gave an excellent insight into luxury. His latest project is We-think – an exploration of and experiment in collaborative creativity. His book, We-think, is due out next year but his publishers have agreed to him putting it on-line now in the spirit of open innovation. Blurb from an email circular below:

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  • ICT in FP7 – opportunities for UK

    Notes from FP6 UK Information Society Technologies meeting at DTI conference centre 06.10.06 to launch the the ICT component of FP7 to UK audience.

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  • Bop presentation to John Prescott

    just presented Bop to John Prescott – when i spoke about the reasons why we were doing it the analogy he made was to do with military strategy in the American civil war – apparantly the red coats lost a few battles due to the heat and their inability to take off their red coats which hampered their performance due to effect of heat….

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  • Ubi Comp 2006 summary

    Time lapse with alpha blending was showing who was looking at what in the demo session…

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  • batteryless wsn

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  • Design Hotel - Copenhagen

    Staying in Hotel Skt Petri tonight. Nice website but just wanted to find a picture of the place… also led me to find which looks handy for trying to find nice hotels for those city stop overs…

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  • low power mode and temp variation


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  • UbiComp 2006

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  • Intelligent Environments event | Intelligent Media Initiative

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  • traer.physics - processing

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  • accelerometer memsic 2125

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  • Fluidforms - punch bag design

    A great example of how people are using Arduino as an input conduit to design product…. uses a home made pressure sensor (conductive wire grids separated by foam) around a punch bag as the input device, the ouptut is a 3D model of the object to be made. Great video, love the soundtrack.

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  • Arduino workshop at Artificialtourism

    Just back from 2 days with Artificialtourism getting some hands on experience with Arduino. After a morning of intros to Arduino, basic does and don’ts and looking at sensors available we got onto building some prototypes. First up was using a tri colour LED (see Farnell) with a simple cross fade app (from examples in Arduino).

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  • Perpetuum vibration energy harvester

    “Perpetuum’s vibration energy-harvesting microgenerator is an enabling technology that makes wireless, battery-free sensors a reality.” Forwarded by a colleague at Arup – Paul Fuller – good to see that a UK product is pitching for the holy grail of energy harvester for wireless sensor networks.

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  • Anisotropy - Polarization

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  • learning arduino

    Arduino – LearnArduino – tutorial on setting up arduino board and ide. Am getting ready for arduino tutorial with Artificialtourism next week. Received boards today from Italy – excellent turn around, just ordered them last week and they were with me this morning – nothing like tearing open a ups package to find a nice little circuit board. Took the usb printer cable out the printer (which is wireless anyway…), downloaded the ide, extracted the usb / serial drivers, plugged it all together and hey presto – the little green led lights up and says *hello world* (well, it wakes up, the next step is to get it saying hello world). Lets get some LED’s flashing….

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  • Processing coursework

    Daniel Shiffman � The Nature of Code – coursework on intro to processing – nice examples.

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  • Arduino and zigbee

    Arduino Xbee, Zigbee wireless sensor and actuator iterface forwarded by Gonzalo and a potential avenue to explore for bop prototypes. BUT, would need to think about all the apps needed to get the real benefit of the *wirelessness*. The radio removes the need to wire together two communicating arduinos but thats it. To get a network setup and running would need to source methods for multihop networking etc.

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  • Anterior Insight

    Anterior Insight is a consumer–focused insight agency providing qualitative market research, forecasting and analysis of the impact that trends and consumer activity have on brands, product development, the potential for new services and business tone of voice. Their first newsletter has trends on retail.

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  • WSN xbow presentation - how to

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  • The Futurist

    VQR � The Futurist is the precursor to James Othmer’s book.

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  • MTS310 hardware problem

    Have sent off 19 MTS300 and MTS310 back to Crossbow for rewiring (2-3 week turn around). Have installed Moteworks v2 rel B. So for time being focusing on application of MTS400 (3 off) and the A/D sensor boards….

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  • nVIDIA on fire

    Alvise found this when looking for reviews on the new laptop he is getting…. nothing like seeing other peoples experiences. I like the quote from the guy who posted this *It is only a matter of time until such an incident breaks out on a plane*…

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  • Ad hoc routing

    Animated gif showing some time stamps of ad hoc routing over the duration of a 2 day trial – note changes in routing patterns – probably due to changes in battery strength and physical changes in space (people, obstructions etc).

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  • Getting things done

    Met with Dan Hill today talking about interactivity in the built environment and away days – an unusual mix… the conversation reminded me to look up: Getting started with “Getting Things Done” 43 Folders

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  • 20 node 24 hours

    screenshot_24hr_cycle.JPG This is a screenshot of a 24 hour cycle of 20 motes measuring temp, light, battery, mic, accel and mag. Motes are micaz, sensor boards are MTS300 and 310’s. Gateway is an MIB510 connected via serial to USB converter. Data being captured into Postgres db on sony laptop. Code on gateway is XMeshBase as shipped with moteworks 2.0. Code on motes is xmts310 from xmesh folder, again shipped with moteworks 2.0 – the only change was my addition of the following to hard code into the application a timer interval of 30 seconds:

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  • 20 nodes fluctuations

    screenshot2.JPG The 20 node network gave some interesting trends but weird results. Not sure why there is so much fluctuation in temperature and seems a little too periodic…. lodged a request with the support desk…

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  • wind at southend

    WindGURU at Southend

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  • 20 nodes


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  • - gallery

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  • 5 nodes

    1 gateway and 4 sensor motes running. Having trouble deciphering code to get all sensors working. Have tried to use the XMesh samples as my base. Used the tutorial file (containing the temp only code) and expand it to include the other stuff. All the examples seem to be slightly different implementations though so figuring out what is and what is not required has been tough. Had some fun at one point trying to figure out that the x in AccelX had to be capitalised…..

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  • Interaction Design for Augmented Objects

    Making Ubicomp Approachable – workshop at UbiComp 2006. Sounds like an interesting workshop…. Topics include:

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  • Mythical Man Month

    Engineering Management Hacks: The BigBook Technique”> A reminder to myself about the mythical man month:

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  • info glut

    Came across the back logged life while browsing 43folders Merlin Mann’s site on life hacks (linked from Make:) The posting and the 43 folders site contain common sense (but useful reminders) on how to deal with the glut of information digitisation has created.

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  • a few teething issues

    took delivery of 20 motes, a mix of 20 sensor boards, internet gateway and the new moteview software. Started by following the user guide and the tutorials and got simple temp readings out. When i started to try doing my own thing I started to struggle – here are a few reminders for me:

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  • Visualising project gannts

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  • please stand securely for talk off

    One Day, That Economy Ticket May Buy You a Place to Stand – New York Times Charles forwarded me this link after our recent workshop on Airport Retail. Inevitably part of the discussion ended up around the future of airline interiors and the kind of services that may become available.

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  • Intelligent Sensing Programme Meeting

    Intelligent Sensing Programme

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  • Programmers Notepad 2

    Programmer’s Notepad 2 – i started using PN when developing in NesC for Crossbow motes and have just come across this updated version – a great simple code editor for windows.

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  • SunSPOTWorld - About Us, Who are we?

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  • explain it to your mum

    Howstuffworks “How Motes Work” – came across this great intro again…

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  • WSN video of vineyard app

    Discovery Channel Video – on the use of motes for monitoring vineyard growing conditions – had seen the articles about this but good to see a video of the environment and the packaging they are using.

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  • WSN blog

    WSN Update – News and Information About Zigbee & Wireless Mesh Sensor Networks a handy blog to review what is going on in the world of WSN – has a US focus.

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  • flocks of motes

    Paper in IEEE Computer and course info for

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  • how fast did i really go

    GpsActionReplay have been looking for this kind of GPS tool for a while – should have thought to look for an application made by / for windsurf speed sailors… Just need to download a .gpx xml file (i use easygps) containing data for a route and then load it into the gps actionreply applet to analyse your speed over a journey (on the bike, motorbike, snowboard or windsurf session)

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  • Building visions on R&D

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  • WSN application

    MoteWorks Wireless Sensor Network Platform has been launched by Crossbow – this should mean out the box configuration of wireless sensor networks (given the apps that ship with it and those that can be used as plugins…) Watch this space… will report more when I have installed and played with it.

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  • Drivers of Change Cards

    The shopping cart has been added to the Drivers of Change 2006 card site so you can now buy them online…

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  • Neither working nor having fun

    Another thing blogs and open source software have in common is that they’re often made by people working at home. That may not seem surprising. But it should be. It’s the architectural equivalent of a home-made aircraft shooting down an F-18. Companies spend millions to build office buildings for a single purpose: to be a place to work. And yet people working in their own homes, which aren’t even designed to be workplaces, end up being more productive.

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  • The Meatrix 2: Revolting now showing online

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  • Retrievr

    Want to find images on Flickr? Just sketch the kind of image you want on retievr. Here is my effort to find trees in a field with blue skies and green grass.

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  • Habitat Hotel LED mesh


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  • persistence of vision

    Two great examples of persistence of vision. One is at the planned public library in Minneapolis where LED’s on the outside of the lift reveal letter by letter words describing the titles of books being checked out. The second came via Make magazine – one for the kids – SpokePOV – LED bike wheel images – look at the how to on instructables

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  • GPS Google Maps

    From Arup Bike User Group – gmap-pedometer. You can plot routes, work out distances and even get plots of elevation along the route – great for cycling.

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  • Night time in the NE


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  • wattson energy display

    Another cool example of people visualising energy usage but also developing the theme of ambient devices….

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  • Airtrax omni-directional wheels


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  • WSN products, people and reports

    Crossbow – we are using this product at Arup – the Mica2, Mica2 dot and more recently the Micaz. Gateways include the MIB510 (with USB adapter) and the MIB600 ethernet gateway. Sensor boards include the MTS300 and 310’s, the MTS420 and the MDA500. We also have the Moteworks software.

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