Trouble reading this message? Read it online.

Feb. 05, 2009

Welcome to the omg-it's-HOW-cold?! issue of the Developer Shed newsletter. We feel for our brethren in the US Northeast, some of whom received as much snow in one month as they typically get all winter. Even down here, I had to put on TWO coats to exercise this morning. (Okay, so they were both light cotton...and your point is...?). If you're looking for protection from a different kind of vulnerability, you should check out the article we're highlighting for you this week from eWeek. It describes AppScan, an IBM tool that the company updated to detect vulnerabilities in Flash and Flex applications and it also works with today's wildly popular AJAX applications. If you program using any of these technologies, it's worth a look.

Before I launch into the list of articles we're offering for your edification this week, I want to tell you about some great news, especially for those of you who can't get enough of our fabulous content. We're increasing our publishing schedule on two of our sites! Hardware enthusiasts will be pleased to hear that they can now get their fix at Dev Hardware FIVE DAYS A WEEK instead of four. And those of you who enjoy the educational offerings on Dev Mechanic will be delighted to hear that we're bumping up its publishing schedule as well, from once a week to THREE times a week, on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays. Yes, we're crazy. Can we do more? Will we do more? Ah, that would be telling...but keep an eye on your newsletter and our sites, because you never know what will happen next.

Now, on to business. If I got the attention of debugging developers with the eWeek article, well, I hope they keep reading, because we kicked off a series on the Xdebug extension on Dev Shed this week. We also showed our international side with an article on building an IP-to-country mapping application, and rounded out the week by wrapping up a two-part series on using Prototip with AJAx. Readers more inclined to Microsoft technologies, meanwhile, enjoyed helpful items on Silverlight and VBScript, as well as a hopeful look forward to Windows 7.

Web site designers and developers checking out Dev Articles this week received a nice education, as we showed you how to build an image gallery in a 3D HTML table set, some interesting tricks with the Ext JS framework, and how to use XSL formatting objects. And for those of you interested in hardware, Dev Hardware's FIRST Friday article covered this year's Consumer Electronics Show! We also reviewed two hot cell phones and an excellent Nikon digital camera.

The SEO professionals reading SEO Chat will find themselves challenged this week, as we dared to ask if your brand is killing your search campaign. We also shared some advanced keyword research strategies and gave you an overview of pay-per-click ad campaigns. Dev Mechanic hasn't yet started its three-times-a-week schedule; that begins on February 23. But this week's article on using Chitika's AdPro service should provide some food for thought for anyone looking to monetize a web site with lots of content.

The cold weather must be making me absent-minded; I forgot to tell you some important Web Hosters news! Okay, it's not exactly life-changing, but we're happy about it. We've covered so many security-related items on the site that we finally created a new category: Web Hosting Security. While this week's article is a news item about Microsoft trying to eliminate piracy rather than a security-related item, you can look forward to seeing us use that category more in the coming weeks. Finally, on Codewalkers, you'll be glad to hear that we're continuing the article series on XML written by our always-easy-to-edit Editor-in-Chief, James not a Payne.

As always, thanks for reading. Until next week,
Developer Shed Staff

ARTICLES
Dev Shed Web Hosters
ASP Free Scripts
Dev Articles Tutorialized
Dev Hardware White Papers
SEO Chat Weird Cool
Dev Mechanic News You Can't Use
Codewalkers    
TOOLS
Get Our Content on Your Site
with DevText!
New Articles, Right To Your E-mail
Developer Search

IBM eKits Make Development eAsy!
Take advantage of free e-kits from developerWorks. E-kits give you a collection of tutorials, articles, webcasts, podcasts, and demos about a particular product, task, or role. This one-stop shop of resources empowers you to maximize your enterprise investment.
Learn more.

IBM Rational Project and Portfolio Management certification training e-kit
Get free PMI training in the IBM Rational Project and Portfolio Management certification training e-kit. As a member of the Project Management Institute's (PMI's) corporate council, IBM has more than 12,000 PMI-certified project managers and has been honored for its educational programs. Now, you can learn more about the difference that IBM's project management curriculum makes with six free courses based on IBM's best-practices processes and tools.
Learn more
.

     
Moblin v2: It's the UI, The Whole UI, and Nothing But the UI (Almost)

By Alan Zeichick
Developers are abuzz about the forthcoming update of the Moblin platform. Moblin v2, expected to appear later this year, is a huge step forward for Mobile Internet Devices (MIDs).But what, exactly, will be in Moblin v2?
Read the full article >
Clutter Adds a Cool Factor to Devices and Development

By Lisa Morgan
Last August, Intel acquired OpenHand and with it Clutter, which improves end user and developer experience. Clutter is an open source library written in C which allows users to manipulate two-dimensional (2D) images in a three-dimensional (3D) space.
Read the full article >


Mobile World Congress
February 16th-19th, 2009 | Barcelona, Spain | WEBSITE >
The GMSA Mobile World Congress (formerly 3GSM World Congress) combines the world's largest exhibition for the mobile industry with a stimulating and insightful congress that brings together prominent leaders and personalities.

O'Reilly Emerging Technology Conference 2009
March 9th-12th, 2009 | San Jose, CA | WEBSITE >
ETech, the O'Reilly Emerging Technology Conference, is O'Reilly Media's flagship "O'Reilly Radar" event. Since 2002, ETech has brought to light the disruptive yet important innovations that we on the horizon, rather than the ones that have already arrived.

OSIM USA (Open Source in Mobile)
March 11th-12th, 2009 | San Francisco, CA | WEBSITE >
The 2nd Annual OSiM USA will equip you with all the necessary knowledge to understand, act, and succeed in the North American Open Source industry.

 


Moblin Clutter Interface


Aigo MID Video Demonstration
  top
It's edgy! It's irreverent! It's all about technology! It's News You Can't Use,
and you won't want to miss it! View this week's edition to learn the answers to these burning questions:

  • News of the weird wants you to know that it cares about your feelings. It cares about hurting them.
  • The triumphant return of Bobby and Juan. And plantains.
  • Say hello to the Tech Auction Network. Then say goodbye, because you will never see it again.

Watch the video!

   
ADVERTISEMENT

Build Web 2.0 Applications Without Hand-Coding
Generate data entry and reporting .NET Web apps in minutes, straight from your database. Quickly create visually stunning, feature-rich Web 2.0 applications that are easy to customize and ready to deploy.
Read More!>

How Modern Code Generation Works
More IT shops are facing tighter deadlines and stretched development teams. That pressure, as well as the emergence of widely accepted standards and new technologies make database applications development tools more viable today than ever before.
Read More!>



Sun Studio software is widely used by enterprises across the globe to quickly deliver optimized, high-quality applications. Accelerate your development today with Sun Studio 12 software!
 
 
  top
Using Prototip with AJAX
by Dan Wellman, 2009-02-04

In the first part of this tutorial we looked at the ease with which a default implementation of Prototip tooltips could be put on the page, and how, with just a little configuration we could change the appearance and behavior of the tooltips. In this part of the tutorial we are going to take a look at the built-in AJAX functionality boasted by the plugin, and see how we can extend the tooltips by supplying HTML elements instead of plain text as their content.
Read the full article
.
Building an IP-to-Country Mapping Application with PHP
by Alejandro Gervasio, 2009-02-03


If you have content in several different languages, your visitors probably speak several different languages as well. Would not it be nice to serve them content from your site in their native language, based on the country from which they hail? You can, even if you are a small company, with an application that tells you a visitor country based on their IP address. This four-part article series will show you how to build the application and incorporate it into your web site.
Read the full article
.
The X-debug Extension
by Alejandro Gervasio, 2009-02-02

If you program at all, you understand the necessity of debugging. Fortunately, depending on the language in which you program, you can find an assortment of tools to help you with this task. One very good debugging tool for PHP is the X-debug extension. This seven-part series will reveal its capabilities and help you add it to your programmer toolbox.
Read the full article
.
The Dictionary Python Object Type
by O'Reilly Media, 2009-01-29

In this third part of a four-part series on Python object types, we will wrap up our discussion of lists and introduce you to some remarkable things you can do with dictionaries. This article is excerpted from chapter four of the book Learning Python, Third Edition, written by Mark Lutz (O'Reilly, 2008; ISBN: 0596513984). Copyright © 2008 O'Reilly Media, Inc. All rights reserved. Used with permission from the publisher. Available from booksellers or direct from O'Reilly Media.
Read the full article
.
  top
Introduction to Binding ComboBox and DataGrid Controls in Silverlight 2.0
by Jagadish Chaterjee, 2009-02-04

This is my seventh article in a series focusing on Silverlight 2.0 development using Visual Studio 2008. In this article, I will introduce you to binding WCF object collections to ComboBox. We will also explore cascading ComboBoxes and the DataGrid relative to ComboBox.
Read the full article
.
Looking Forward to Windows 7
by Bruce Coker, 2009-02-03

In late October 2008 Microsoft began distributing the first pre-beta versions of Windows 7 at its Professional Developers Conference. This is the clearest indicator to date of the urgency with which it wants to roll out the new operating system and put the Vista debacle behind it once and for all. Welcome to the second part of a two-part series that takes a close look at what we can expect from the new OS.
Read the full article.
Completing Calendars with VBScript Date Functions
by Nilpo, 2009-02-02


In my last article, we began building a script that could produce and display a formatted calendar for a specified month and year. In this article, I will show you how to wrap up this project by putting all of the pieces together.
Read the full article
.
Working with Media in Vista
by O'Reilly Media, 2009-01-29


If you're wrestling with the way Windows Vista handles media on your computer, keep reading. This article, the first part of a five-part series, will help you troubleshoot any problems you have playing video. It is excerpted from chapter four of the book Windows Vista Annoyances: Tips, Secrets, and Hacks for the Cranky Consumer, written by David A. Karp (O'Reilly, 2008; ISBN: 0596527624). Copyright © 2008 O'Reilly Media, Inc. All rights reserved. Used with permission from the publisher. Available from booksellers or direct from O'Reilly Media.
Read the full article
.
ADVERTISEMENT


Are you a Developer with the skill and know-how to change the way we live through the use of Windows Embedded Products? Take a moment to
"SPARK your Imagination"
and listen to this exciting opportunity to earn a $15,000 cash reward for your product idea or win other unique prizes.

Windows Embedded SPARK Contest

 
  top
Using XSL Formatting Objects
by Peyton McCullough, 2009-02-04

If you need to format content not just for web pages, but for pages that will actually be printed out, keep reading. There is a technology called XSL Formatting Objects that can help you get the job done. In this article, we will explain how to use it to format your content appropriately.
Read the full article
.
Grouping Field Sets on Dynamic Web Forms with the Ext JS Framework
by Alejandro Gervasio, 2009-02-03


In the first part of this series, I showed you how to build a simple dynamic web form with the Ext JS framework. The form performed basic client-side validation on some of its fields. In this second part of a five-part series, I am going to show you how to build a more complex form with this framework, capable of more sophisticated behavior.
Read the full article
.
Building an Image Gallery in a 3D HTML Table
by Chrysanthus Forcha, 2009-02-02


This article aims to show you how you can use an HTML three-dimensional table as a picture gallery. The HTML specification does not specify a 3D HTML table. However, you can create one, as I have discussed in a previous article. You will also need basic knowledge of database tables, HTML, DOM and JavaScript. This article is the first part of a three-part series.
Read the full article
.
The Resource-Oriented Architecture
by O'Reilly Media, 2009-01-29


If you have an interest in building web sites that can be used by machines, keep reading. In this four-part article series, you'll learn about the architecture behind Representational State Transfer (REST) and how to make use of it. It is excerpted from chapter four of the book RESTful Web Services, written by Leonard Richardson and Sam Ruby (O'Reilly, 2008; ISBN: 0596529260). Copyright © 2008 O'Reilly Media, Inc. All rights reserved. Used with permission from the publisher. Available from booksellers or direct from O'Reilly Media.
Read the full article
.
  top
Samsung Instinct
by jkabaseball, 2009-02-04

Should you get a cell phone or a smart phone? That division is becoming more and more artificial these days. Today, we will take a look at a phone that walks the line: it is as easy to use as a merely functional cell phone, but offers as many applications (if not more) as a smart phone. It is the Samsung Instinct, and it just might give the iPhone something to worry about. Keep reading to find out why.
Read the full article
.
Nikon D300
by Bruce Coker, 2009-02-03

In the D300, Nikon have created a worthy successor to the widely respected D200 professional Digital SLR camera. Wisely retaining the most valued features of its predecessor, such as the weather-sealed metal chassis and extensively backward-compatible metering, the company has added significant new capabilities to the new model while managing to avoid sacrificing anything in terms of usability or build quality.
Read the full article
.
Motorola W755 Cell Phone Review
by Joe Eitel, 2009-02-02


If you are in the market for a cell phone with the latest bells and whistles that might even replace your MP3 player, then you have to strongly consider the Motorola W755. Today we will take a good look at it to tell you why.
Read the full article.
CES 2009
by jkabaseball, 2009-01-30

Once a year the geeks of the world gather at the Consumer Electronic Show (CES). This happens in early January every year. It is a time to see the very newest gadgets in development and gadgets right around the corner for us. Keep reading to find out what was hot at this year's show.
Read the full article.
Security Issues with the Bluetooth Headset
by Katie Gatto, 2009-01-29


You probably love the hands-free and wires-free aspects of your Bluetooth headset. Well, there are some disadvantages that come with it, and no, we do not mean that it makes you look like a cyborg who is talking to himself. We are talking about your cell phone security, and the possibility that someone could hijack your phone for some very long international conversations at your expense. Keep reading for the details, including some advice on how to prevent it and what to do if you fall victim to this hack.
Read the full article.
 
ADVERTISEMENT
 
  top
Top PPC Tips for Effective Marketing
by Stephen Davies, 2009-02-04

Interested in pay-per-click ad campaigns, but nervous about taking the plunge? This article will give you a good overview of what is involved. It will lay out the benefits and introduce you to the top companies with which you can do PPC marketing. You will also learn what you need to know to make the most of your campaign.
Read the full article
.
Advanced Keyword Research Strategies
by Ivan Strouchliak, 2009-02-03

Keyword selection will haunt your search engine optimization campaign forever, so in this article we aim to help you make better choices. In this first part of a two-part series, you will learn where to find an abundance of keywords, and how to narrow them down to the ones that will be most effective for your web site.
Read the full article
.
Is Your Brand Killing Your Search Campaign?
by Terri Wells, 2009-02-02

Building a brand gets you name recognition that translates into online searches, web site traffic, and conversions, right? Not in all cases. You may try to position yourself as one thing, but your target market is looking for something else. And it does not matter if you can fulfill that need, too, if your audience can not find you!
Read the full article
.
  top
Microsoft Aims to Eliminate Piracy
by Joe Eitel, 2009-02-04

Despite being a powerful technology giant that earns billions in revenue and has millions of devoted users worldwide, Microsoft still struggles to keep knock-off software bearing its name away from popular public auctions sites such as eBay. This was the third consecutive holiday season that the Redmond, Washington-based company went after suspected sellers of counterfeit software both domestically and abroad. Is it a hopeless battle?
Read the full article
.
Spam Increasing, and This Time it`s Personal
by Joe Eitel, 2009-01-28

As a new year is upon us, we have much to be thankful for and even more to look forward to, but according to many experts, anyone who owns and uses a computer has something unexpected coming their way: a major influx of personal spam. Since the advent of e-mail, spam has been an annoying part of everyday life. The problem, though, is that we are now inundated by spam in all of its various forms - from e-mail to texts - and it is becoming more personal, more dangerous and more legitimate-looking in terms of its appearance.
Read the full article
.
New Internet for Space, New Technologies to Test
by Brian Sutherland, 2009-01-21

We have an Internet here on Earth, but how will we communicate in space? NASA's old network is just that: old, with everything that implies. Fortunately, its replacement is already being tested, and it can do a few things our own earthbound and earth-orbiting Internet can not. Get ready for Disruption-Tolerant Networking (DTN), coming to a satellite near you!
Read the full article
.
 

Check out the amazing tutorials from IBM developerWorks and see what all the buzz is about!

WebSphere Service Registry and Repository
Manage, govern, and share services across your organization by using WebSphere Service Registry and Repository. Follow the hands-on exercises to learn how to navigate the Web interface to publish, find, reuse, and update services.

Building JavaScript applications with JSEclipse
Using JSEclipse, JavaScript programmers now have their own Eclipse plug-in that provides many important features to aid in the development of JavaScript applications. JSEclipse gives JavaScript developers the same ease of use that Eclipse has been providing in the Java language and others for years. Learn to use this tool, while creating a colony of evolving "creatures" on your page.

Learn how to install and use the Rational Asset Manager Eclipse client
In this tutorial, you can learn how to install and configure the IBM Rational Asset Manager Eclipse client, explore the different views in the Asset Management perspective, learn various search techniques, work with existing assets, and submit a new asset.

Improve your build process with IBM Rational Build Forge, Part 1: Create a continuous build and integration environment
Learn how to implement a build management system that uses and extends your existing automation technologies. This tutorial shows, step-by-step, how to install and configure IBM Rational Build Forge to manage builds for Jakarta Tomcat from source code.

Build Web services with transport-level security using Rational Application Developer V7, Part 1: Build Web services and Web services clients
Build secure Web services with transport-level security using IBM Rational Application Developer V7 and IBM WebSphere Application Server V6.1. Follow this three-part series for step-by-step instructions about how to develop Web services and clients, configure HTTP basic authentication, and configure HTTP over SSL (HTTPS). This first part of the series walks you through building a Web service for a simple calculator application. You generate and test two different types of Web services clients: a Java Platform, Enterprise Edition (Java EE) client and a stand-alone Java client. You also handle user-defined exceptions in Web services.

Test terminal-based applications with Rational Functional Tester
Regression testing -- in which code is thoroughly tested to ensure that changes have not produced unexpected results -- is an important part of any development process. But many testing environments neglect the terminal-based applications that still form the backbone of many industries. In this tutorial, you'll learn how the Rational Functional Tester Extension for Terminal-Based Applications works with other Rational Functional Tester to help test terminal-based applications quickly and easily.

Improve your build process with IBM Rational Build Forge,
Part 2: Automate builds for a real-world Tomcat project

Learn how Rational Build Forge can extend a simple compile and package build process by adding customization and deployment capability. Go from a manual method to automating: checking for code changes; getting the latest source; compiling and packaging; customizing; copying to and restarting a deployment server; and sending e-mail notification that a new version is available.

NEW! Application development for the OLPC laptop
The XO laptop (of the One-Laptop-Per-Child initiative) is an inexpensive laptop project intended to help educate children around the world. The XO laptop includes many innovations, such as a novel, inexpensive, and durable hardware design and the use of GNU/Linux as the underlying operating system. The XO also includes an application environment written in Python with a human interface called Sugar, accessible to everyone (including kids). Explore the Sugar APIs and learn how to develop and debug a graphical activity in Sugar using Python.

 
  top

Tutorialized is dedicated to programming, designing, and many other
tech related tutorials.

Straighten Crooked Photos
Learn how to easily straighten crooked photos in Photoshop.
Read the tutorial.

Basic Drag and Drop in Flash 8
How to create basic drag and drop with Flash 8.
Read the tutorial.

Blend Techniques With Layer Mask
Learn blending techniques by using this layer mask. Read the tutorial.

Grails Services and Google Maps
A guide to using them. Easy tutorial and simple to read. Read the tutorial.

Flash Zoom In and Zoom Out
A Flash zoom in and zoom out application with Actionscript 2.0.
Read the tutorial.

Google AdSense Split Testing
Guide to maximizing your revenue with a small PHP script.
Read the tutorial.

 

Want to Earn Cash & Fame Writing
for ASP Free?

Developer Shed is actively seeking fresh, new writing talents for our Microsoft Windows technology site. We're looking for Windows programmers, system administrators, and more to provide our readers with the latest, up-to-date techniques and strategies.

Here's your chance to earn some cash, gain some exposure, and beef up your resume! If you would like to join our team, email your name, a description of your qualifications, and the topic areas you would like to cover to contact_editor@developershed.com.

 
  top

Scripts is dedicated to developer and programming related scripts both commercial and free, and for all OS platforms.

h2desk Help Desk Software
h2desk is the powerful way to provide online support to your customers. Create, manage, and overlook unlimited staff and more.
Learn more.

PHP Store Pixel Ads
PHP Store Pixel Ads comes with advanced settings including the ability to use interlaced images, and much, much more. Learn more.

Framework for WEB Development
You will be able to develop easily and really fast grids, reports, graphics, filters, forms, and more.
Learn more.

Inventory Bookkeeping
Billing accounting software generate various accounting reports including final report, stock reports, sales reports, and others. Learn more.

Time Tracking
TimeTracking is a web based time tracking application. It allows you and your team to enter time spend on different task while working.
Learn more.

Remote PC Monitoring Software
Network asset database administration freeware utility generates software auditing and management reports. Learn more.

  top
A Guide to Using Chitika AdPro Service
by KC Morgan, 2009-02-04


Chitika AdPro service is quickly gaining attention on the Internet. It is often compared to Google AdSense, and is specifically made for sites featuring a lot of content. Chitika is very much designed with blogs and bloggers in mind. But does that mean it will be a success on your site? Learn more about earning income with Chitika.
Read the full article
.
Customizing Title Tags in Blogger Classic
by Codex-M, 2009-01-28


If you are thinking about getting into blogging online, and looking for a cheap and easy way to get started, you can do worse than to go with Blogger. It is a nice system, but it has a few problems when it comes to SEO. If you decide you want to use Blogger but still want to turn up well in the search engines, keep reading; help is at hand.
Read the full article
.
How to Make a (Good) MySpace Page
by KC Morgan, 2009-01-21


MySpace, that highly popular social networking site, is open to all and used by many. With MySpace, you can create an online profile and even a blog to talk about your interests and potentially meet like-minded individuals. It is social networking at its best, but is it more than that? You may already know how to create a MySpace page. Now, find out how to make a good MySpace page that helps promote your business interests.
Read the full article
.
  top
Getting to Know XML
by James Payne, 2009-02-04

In this second article in a series on beginning XML, I hope to familiarize you with some basic terminology used when discussing XML, as well as show you the basics of syntax, and furthermore, how to begin moving your data into an XML document.
Read the full article
.
A Friendly Approach to XML
by James Payne, 2009-01-28

This tutorial covers the basic ideas and methodologies behind XML. It will attempt to teach you, the reader, how to get started using the language. In this first part we will uncover the history of XML and learn its basic syntax, as well as its advantages and disadvantages, in the hopes of learning if it is right for you.
Read the full article
.
Fedora 10 Released
by Barzan 'Tony' Antal, 2009-01-21

Finally, Fedora 10 is now available to the public. So far, it has received good reviews. Fedora 10 is a Linux-based operating system that is built on the Linux kernel version 2 .6 .27. In this article, we will take a close look at this long-awaited open source challenger to the Microsoft desktop hegemony.
Read the full article
.
  top

Google Gives Users Some Latitude

Wondering where your friends are so you can hang out? Need to know where your teen-ager or perpetually late boyfriend got to? Google can help you find them. The search company just introduced a service called Latitude that lets mobile phone users reveal where they are to a few contacts and even find others. "What Google Latitude does is allow you to share that location with friends and family members, and likewise be able to see friends and family members' locations," explained Steve Lee, product manager for Google Latitude.

Google hasn't forgotten the privacy issues. You must specifically sign up for the service to use it. You can choose to share your precise location, what city you're in, or nothing at all. What's more, you get to decide who is allowed to know where you are, and in how much detail. As with almost all Google services, this one is free, though the search giant hopes it will lead to location-based advertising revenue.

Google Latitude works in 27 countries. It finds users' locations via both GPS satellite and proximity to mobile phone towers and wireless networks. It will work on most BlackBerry phones with a color screen, most phones with Windows Mobile 5.0 or later, and most Symbian-based devices. The Google Android operating system is being updated to support it, and iPhone and the iPod Touch will be able to use the service very soon. Lest this service sound a little too much like Big Brother, it's worth noting that you CAN lie with it; it lets you hide from specific people, disappear altogether, and even manually set a specific location if, for example, you want to tell someone you were at the gym when you were really at the donut shop.

Read more about this

The World's Biggest Sundial?

You think you know a building, and then you learn that it's hiding something in plain view. That's what Robert Hannah of the University of Otago in Dunedin, New Zealand, would have us believe about the Roman Pantheon. This enormous structure, completed in 128 AD, is widely believed to be nothing more (and nothing less) than a temple. But Hannah argues that it is, in fact, the world's largest sundial.

The Pantheon features a cylindrical chamber with a domed roof. At the center of the roof, a circular hole lets in a shaft of sunlight. In addition, the structure includes a colonnaded courtyard at the front. But here's where it gets interesting: during the six months of winter, the light from the noon sun travels along a specific path on the inside of the domed roof. During summer, that light falls on the lower walls and floor. At the equinoxes, in March and September, the light through the hole hits a point between the roof and wall, landing just above the Pantheon's grand northern doorway where a grill above the door lets light into the front courtyard. It is only during these equinoxes that the front courtyard sees sunlight if its main doors are closed.

Hannah notes that a hollowed-out hemisphere with a hole in the top represents one style of sundial the Romans used, and that making the Pantheon in the form of a sundial was meant not only as a tribute to the gods, but to elevate the emperors who worshiped there into a more godly realm. Astronomy historian James Evans is intrigued by Hannah's theories, but thinks the case is far from certain, because if the Pantheon ever included sundial-related markings, they have not survived.

Read more about this

Teaching the Singularity

Singularity University is more than just a name; it's a guiding philosophy for the new educational institution that is the brainchild of world-renowned scientists Ray Kurzweil and Peter Diamandis. To be set up on the NASA Ames base near Mountain View, the college will open its doors to its first students in June. Its mission: help solve the world's biggest problems.

The school is looking for students with a background in a number of emerging disciplines, such as nanotechnology, biotechnology and information technology. "We are reaching out across the globe to gather the smartest and most passionate future leaders and arm them with the tools and network they need to wrestle with the grand challenges of our day," said Diamandis. The university derives its name from Kurzweil's theory of "Technological Singularity," which expresses the belief that certain exponentially growing technologies will radically increase human intelligence in the next 20 years and reshape humanity's future. For his part, Kurzweil hopes the university will accelerate technology enough to help us solve the pressing problems of humanity. Health and medicine. Poverty. Democratization.

Funding for the school came in part from Google, and Nobel Prize-winning scientists had a hand in its creation. As to Singularity's curriculum, it will consist of a single, nine-week course of study every summer. During this course, 120 students from various disciplines, chosen from graduate and post-graduate programs around the world, will mix with the goal of tackling important issues, large in scope and their affect on mankind. Tuition for the course will cost $25,000. If that sounds like too much for you, never fear; Singularity University will also feature three-day and ten-day courses for business executives, to provide them with a look at the future.

Read more about this

Advertising
If you wish to advertise in our newsletter, please contact us.

Unsubscribe
If you don't want to receive our emails, please unsubscribe.
An email will be sent with additional instructions to confirm your unsubscription.