UI, UX: Who Does What?


By Lo Min Ming – The boundaries between each of these various design roles are very fluid.

Some UX designers are also expected to do interaction design, and often UI designers are expected to push pixels as well.

The best way to look for the right person is to describe what you expect the designer to do within your company’s process, and choose a title that best represents the primary task of that person. more> http://tinyurl.com/pdns7uk

Swiss cross made from just 20 single atoms


R&D – Ever since the 1990s, physicists have been able to directly control surface structures by moving and positioning single atoms to certain atomic sites.

A number of atomic manipulations have previously been demonstrated both on conducting or semi-conducting surfaces mainly under very low temperatures.

However, the fabrication of artificial structures on an insulator at room temperature is still a long-standing challenge and previous attempts were uncontrollable and did not deliver the desired results.

In this study, an international team of researchers around Shigeki Kawai and Ernst Meyer from the Department of Physics at the University of Basel presents the first successful systematic atomic manipulation on an insulating surface at room temperatures. more> http://tinyurl.com/qgw3gcy

How to start a bank and let each of the BRICS be in charge


By Devjyot Ghoshal – It’s not easy to bring five world leaders together, get them to negotiate a landmark deal and have them all leave happily.

But something like that may have just happened in Fortaleza, Brazil.

Leaders of the BRICS—Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa—met for their sixth summit, and hammered out an agreement to establish a new development bank.

The New Development Bank (NDB), as it’ll be known, is being pitched as an alternative to the World Bank and IMF, mostly because the two Bretton Woods institutions remain dominated by western powers. more> http://tinyurl.com/oxmzjym

Views from the Solar System (217)


Reddish Bands on Europa

NASA – This colorized image of Jupiter’s moon Europa is a product of clear-filter grayscale data from one orbit of NASA’s Galileo spacecraft, combined with lower-resolution color data taken on a different orbit. The blue-white terrains indicate relatively pure water ice, whereas the reddish areas contain water ice mixed with hydrated salts, potentially magnesium sulfate or sulfuric acid. The reddish material is associated with the broad band in the center of the image, as well as some of the narrower bands, ridges, and disrupted chaos-type features. It is possible that these surface features may have communicated with a global subsurface ocean layer during or after their formation.

The image area measures approximately 101 by 103 miles (163 km by 167 km). The grayscale images were obtained on November 6, 1997, during the Galileo spacecraft’s 11th orbit of Jupiter, when the spacecraft was approximately 13,237 miles (21,700 kilometers) from Europa. These images were then combined with lower-resolution color data obtained in 1998, during the spacecraft’s 14th orbit of Jupiter, when the spacecraft was 89,000 miles (143,000 km) from Europa.

Image Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/SETI Institute

Rethinking computing and cyberspace


By George Mattathil – There are two characteristics that determine the value of applications:

  1. Intrinsic data intensity, and
  2. Economic utility.

Weather prediction, gene sequencing and product design simulations are high data intensity applications with high economic utility.

Entertainment videos are examples of high data intensive application with low economic utility.

Electronic payment is a low data intensity application with high economic utility. more> http://t.co/KeeCW98SbL

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Shaping the Workforce You Need


By Allison Schrager – Once upon a time, manufacturing jobs entailed more routine tasks. An auto assembly plan, traditionally a big employer in Detroit, could take someone with a high school diploma, train him fairly quickly, and provide him with a comfortable, benefit rich, middle-class life assembling cars.

According to Kim Hill of the Center for Automotive Research, when it comes to auto assembly: “Certainly the jobs are more technical than they were 30 years ago, or even 10 years ago.  In order to work on an assembly line, prospective employees must have an associate’s degree—or equivalent—before they are even considered for employment.”

This change in the manufacturing industry has polarized the economy. more> http://tinyurl.com/pzbmv8n

Optimizing Graphene Characterization


By Lishan Weng – Before 2004, when Geim and Novoselov demonstrated the existence of graphene, a single-atomic-layer-thick crystal of carbon, physicists didn’t believe such a substance could exist. Since then, graphene has attracted tremendous research interest because of its exceptional physical and electrical properties, including remarkably high electron mobility at room temperature, high transparency, very high thermal conductivity and superior mechanical strength.

Graphene is highly conductive, so measured voltages are low. The results (Figure) show the longitudinal resistance of the graphene layer as a function of the silicon substrate. They demonstrate graphene’s ambipolar nature; that is, that it conducts when either electrons or holes are induced into the material. The large slope on each side of the peak indicates a rapid decrease in resistance as the magnitude of the gate voltage increases, which offers evidence of graphene’s high carrier mobility. more> http://tinyurl.com/pvkbmm7

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