Lunch & learn: An app a day: Tasty apps for iPhone and Android

droid.jpg“Smartphones are the new platform, and apps are the core,” says Douglas Dixon, an independent technology consultant, author, and speaker specializing in digital media. “In just a year and a half, the Apple App Store for iPhone users has surpassed 140,000 applications, and users have downloaded more than 3 billion apps. — Not bad for a new market that was created only a year and a half earlier.”

At the February 24 Lunch ‘n Learn seminar, Dixon explored the range of apps being developed for these new platforms. Beyond rude sound effects and popping bubbles, developers are leveraging both the intelligence of handsets and the power of back-end cloud computing to provide new kinds of timely

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Screencast: How to Create and Edit Maps in Google Maps

Google Maps for Android
Google Maps for Android (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

In this screencast, we will show you how to create a maps, edit the map (by adding directions, points of interest via markers, and drawing boxes to highlight areas on the map), and save them to share with others, under the My Maps feature. We also demonstrate how to change the language of the map and the directions you save on the map. To view the screencast, click on the link below (larger view) or on the player.


Lunch & Learn: The Joys and Ploys of Little Toys with Doug Dixon

devices.jpgDoug Dixon, Manifest Technology, returned to Princeton to exhibit the hottest, miniature technological wonders in the electronic marketplace, notably media players, communication devices, and audio accessories. On his web site, Dixon maintains a technology blog as well as thematic galleries with information on trends and sample products including detailed specifications and prices about these latest hip-pocket wonders.
So much fun, or too many choices? As became obvious at his April 23 Lunch ‘n Learn presentation, there’s no one integrated full-featured gadget that does it all. Suggests Dixon, it’s a wonderful, but confusing, world at the electronics store — for consumers as well as manufacturers. What is the industry to do? There’s so much new technology to leverage, so many possible features to add, and so much potential in integrating multiple devices. But you can’t ask customers what they want, because the new devices have not been invented yet. So instead we see a profusion of different combinations of features, form factors, and price points thrown into the market to see what sticks.

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Lunch & Learn: Why Your Humble iPod May Be Holding the Biggest Mystery in All of Science with Bernard Chazelle

chazelle1.jpgIn 1965, Intel co-founder Gordon Moore predicted that the number of transistors placed on an integrated circuit would double approximately every two years. That prediction, notes Bernard Chazelle, Computer Science Professor at Princeton, if anything underestimated the results during the past half century and should continue for at least another decade. Moore’s Law, he posits, is responsible for most of the desktop and hip-pocket wonders of the computer age, notably remarkable improvements in processing speed, memory capacity, and network bandwidth.
Moore’s Law correctly predicted revolutionary technological and social change in the late 20th century. But by 2020 if not before, as transistor features approach just atoms in width, Moore’s Law will have run its course. New technologies may replace integrated circuit technologies to extend Moore’s Law for decades; Chazelle argues that the years ahead will usher in the era of the “Algorithm,” a notion which, he contends, may prove to be the most disruptive and revolutionary scientific paradigm since quantum mechanics.

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Lunch & Learn: Teaching with Tablet PCs with Serge Goldstein

At the December 6 Lunch ‘n Learn, Serge Goldstein, the Director of OIT’s Academic Services, presented “Teaching with a Tablet PC.” Tablets, explained Goldstein, are simply Windows laptops (there are no Mac versions currently) that use a special “pen” rather than a mouse. The screens, which fill the length and width of the tablet, also act as a built in scanner.
The tablets run a special operating system (Windows XP Tablet PC) that recognizes the pen and is able to run all Windows XP applications including Microsoft Office. Microsoft’s new Vista operating system will have built in support for tablets. Some special applications take full advantage of having a pen as their input device.

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