Find your Qi in furniture

With so many people now communicating over wireless phones, wireless technology is now OLDWorthy.  Even powering your phone wirelessly has been around for a while now.

Furniture is, of course, also OLDWorthy.  But with Ikea about to release its line of wireless charging furniture that support the Qi standard built into many new phones, wireless and furniture are about to become NEWWorthy again.  They’re also selling DIY kits so you can embed wireless charging technology into your own furniture.

IKEA Belgium presents a vision below of how wireless charging technology can easily integrate into the home.

Picture programming

I’ve done quite a bit of image processing and image manipulation programming using C or C++.  But now there’s Picture, a new probabilistic programming language that could make writing machine learning applications easier.  More information on Picture can be found here.  I was going to include a YouTube video, but I couldn’t find a good one that was less than 4 minutes long.  So explaining Picture — or any other probabilistic programming language — may be harder than using Picture.

Software Box clip art

Bronto-comeback

What does the dwarf planet Pluto have to do with a Brontosaurus?  Both are trying to make a comeback!  Some scientists would like to promote Pluto back to full planet status.  And what about the species Brontosaurus, which got rolled into the same classification as Apatosaurus Ajax?

Dinosaurs are OLDWorthy.   But according to The Scientist magazine, researchers from Portugal and the U.K. are considering reinstating the genus Brontosaurus.  If they do, the Brontosaurus will once again be NEWWorthy.

Brontosaurus clip art

The Dow Jones, historically speaking

It is perhaps interesting to look at the Dow Jones historical average as a complete amateur in finance, but with an eye towards patterns.  I present this as entertainment and not a financial analysis of any kind.   Note that NEWWorthy does not offer financial advice.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average is OLDWorthy.  As you may well know, from 1997 to 2015 we have seen at least two major drops in the average, but in recent years it has risen sharply.  Take a look at the years 1915 to 1934 in the Dow Jones chart (see link above).  Does it look like a similar curve?  How about the years 1936 to 1946?  In one case we see a sharp fall, and in the other a continued rise.

Is the stock market just a machine that repeats itself?  Can stock prices be predicted — with far more and accurate analysis than I just did — based on statistics and past history?  You’ll have to decide that for yourself.  If you do not believe the market can be predicted, then what happens in the next several years may be NEWWorthy.

The American Association of Individual Investors presents a Sentiment Survey each week.  That’s another way that some data researchers look at trends in the stock market.

So what’s a quant? A quantitative analyst, someone who tries to predict market trends using past and current data. A Prudential video below provides a fairly quick definition.  They present quants as people who may be able to provide some form of comfort for investors, particularly when the market is hard to predict.   Some say that the quants were responsible for the 2008 market crash — as in this Scientific American article — while others today — as in this Wall Street Journal article — are saying that quants are predicting the future.

Ultimately, it is difficult for the average person to know how to apply historical information to stock market trends, or whether it even makes sense to do so.  Like many other things in life, it’s something you have to figure out for yourself.

Emerging Sports television

Emerging Sports TV will launch in April 2015, according to their website.  Since there are many sports that are growing — even quickly — but still relatively small compared to many televised sports, someone decided to combine these interesting sports into a televised channel.  One of these sports is disc golf, a sport which I enjoy playing and watching.

Their motto is “At Emerging Sports TV, our mission is to recapture the spirit of ‘Why We Fell in Love with Sports in the First Place.’  I think that’s a refreshing look at sports and potentially NEWWorthy.

Are replicants back?

Anyone who has seen or heard of “Blade Runner” knows what a replicant is.  Are they back?  Blade-Runner 2 says that a sequel is in the works.

The movie “Blade Runner” is OLDWorthy, having been released in 1982.  But a sequel, if done well, could feel like a new movie to many.  Older fans might be looking forward to a sequel that might consider what happened to Deckard, while new fans could be introduced to an updated plot with modern themes and graphics.

Of course, it could be just another attempt by a studio to make money, with little thought about the stature of this story in science fiction.  But if it is done well, it could become NEWWorthy.

But will Rutger Hauer or Sean Young be in it?  Will mobile phones be used to test replicants?

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Arads and Vrads

With Virtual (VR) and Augmented Reality (AR) systems coming in the not too distant future, advertisers are already planning ways to meet consumer’s eyes.  Ads have been around for a long time — long before the year 0 — so they’re OLDWorthy.  Ads on VR and AR — which I’m calling Arads and Vrads or ARads and VRads — are a relatively new idea.  So maybe they’re NEWWorthy.  That is, if you don’t mind a slightly new meaning to the old Bell ad motto “Reach Out and Touch Someone” — or in the case of VR and AR, touch or control something.