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February 19, 2015 Leah Bortz

ICYMI: Automation News Roundup, Week Ending Feb. 20


Infographics for the Future

Have you ever wondered why viewing infographics can be so satisfying? An infographic on infographics explains


Affinova’s infographic

the increase of gathering info visually in 13 reasons, but to summarize, over half of our brains are involved in visual processing, our eyes contain 70% of all sensory receptors, and we can get the gist of a visual scene in only 1/10th of a second.

And, of course, we all know we are constantly  “suffering” from information overload these days.

With this in mind, an infographic created by marketing technology company Affinova (recently acquired by the consumer/media insights company, Nielson) describes well what consumers want, and don’t want, for that matter, out of the Internet of Things.

By clearly separating the results into what consumers most wanted, somewhat wanted, and least wanted, it is interesting to see what the average consumer gleaned as appropriate for the Internet of Things as a whole.

You’ve Got a Big (Data) Heart

BBC News published a heart-warming story on Valentine’s Day featuring the work of doctors/medical researchers in London.

1,600 beating, human hearts have been stored “in digital form on a computer,” in a big data study in hopes of “develop[ing] new treatments by comparing the detailed information on the hearts and the patients’ genes.”

Photo courtesy http://www.freeimages.com/photo/1099993

Photo courtesy freeimages.com

The scientists involved in the  study are from the Medical Research Council’s Clinical Sciences Centre at Hammersmith Hospital. By scanning 3D videos of the 1,600 patients hearts, they are able to identify genetic information from each patient.

This genetic code is then stored on computers at the  European Bioinfomatics Institute (EBI) in Cambridge. Just how big is the data collected? BBC reports that the collected data “occupies the equivalent of more than 5,000 laptops.”

Vehicle-to-Vehicle Communication

Photo courtesy imcreator.com

Photo courtesy imcreator.com

 MIT Technology Review posted a thought-provoking, new idea for the tech world- cars that can communicate with one another.

The communication would help to prevent crashes or other incidents with vehicles by broadcasting the car’s “position, speed, steering-wheel position, brake status, and other data to other vehicles within a few hundred meters.”

The article explains that this is the time, more than ever,  to introduce a new technology to keep the roads safe, reporting that “more than five million crashes occur on U.S. roads alone every year, and more than 30,000 of those are fatal.”

So who is actually planning on using it? Upon some testing in Europe and Japan, the U.S. Department of Transportation said they would begin to draft regulations that could eventually mandate the use of vehicle-to-vehicle communication.

OJ Power & Wastewater

Scientists from Sao Paulo State University in Brazil have developed a way to generate power by using the orange juice industry, potentially helping to reduce factory carbon emissions, scidev.net reports. 

Photo courtesy freeimages.com

Photo courtesy freeimages.com

“The technology uses waste water produced by orange processing to make hydrogen. Hydrogen has a high energy density and produces no pollution, making it a good source of clean energy.”

The research project completed last month by Sandra Maintinguer, a researcher at the university’s Center for Monitoring and Research of the Quality of Fuels, Biofuels, Crude Oil and Derivatives, said that the process will work best on a smaller scale, and that it is ready to be tested at local juice factories.

“We can combine the treatment of the industrial effluents with energy generation,” Maintinguer says in the scidev.net article, “We propose to install a reactor to capture hydrogen and generate electricity out of the waste water. This energy could be used as a sustainable solution to provide electricity to factories.”

Big Data & Event Planning

Big Data affects more industries than you might think.

On the events & hospitality blog, Social Tables, Big Data is said to actually impact the event planning industry in four major ways:

  •  Creating personalized, attendee-centered experiences
  • Making adjustments in real time
  • Having a better control on crowd flow
  • Revamping travel & safety precautions

“The ability to utilize the information gleaned by crowdsourcing and big data will revamp the industry,” according to the events & hospitality blog,  Social Tables. 

 A Love Letter to Water

 Northeast Ohio Regional Sewer District confessed  their love for clean water in the form of a video right in time for Valentine’s Day with the description: “A love like this is often hard to put into words. Water, please allow us to try.  #LoveCleanWater”

The love letter starts with a simple declaration “you and I have ebbs and flows, ups and downs, and waves of affection,” and while it may sound silly at first, the sewer district actually makes some great points.

Without  proper treatment, life would be a lot different. Clean water is a precious gift.

Media we link to:

“13 Reasons Why your Brain Craves Infographics” – NeoMam Studios

“What Consumers Want – and Don’t Want – From the Internet of Things (Infographic)” – Entrepreneur 

“Doctors store 1,600 digital hearts for big data study” – BBC News

“Car-to-Car Communication” – MIT Technology Review 

“Fruit Juice Factories Could be Powered from Wastwater” –scidev.net 

“4 Ways Big Data is Driving the Events Industry” – Social Tables 

“A Love Letter to Water” – Northeast Ohio Regional Sewer District 

 Hero Image by Robert S. Donovan

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