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The entire windshield is turned into a transparent display to highlighting landmarks, obstacles and road edges on the windshield in real-time. Such a system can point out to drivers potential hazards, such as a running animal, even in foggy or dark conditions, GM says. GM uses a special type of glass coated with red-emitting and blue-emitting phosphors--a clear synthetic material that glows when it is excited by ultraviolet light. The phosphor display, created by SuperImaging, is activated by tiny, ultraviolet lasers bouncing off mirrors bundled near the windshield. Three cameras track a driver's head and eyes to determine where she is looking. [Via Technology Review]
Today, cars can have as many as 70 electronic control units, or ECUs, based on microcontrollers (sometimes generically referred to as microprocessors). ECUs manage engines, doors, transmissions, seats, and entertainment, and climate systems. Electronic throttle systems use an array of sensors, microcontrollers, and electric motors to control how the car is accelerated. Gone are the old steel cables to connect the driver's foot to the engine. Because of all of this added complexity and the need for chips to talk to each other, a bus system was introduced--not unlike the Peripheral Component Interconnect, or PCI bus used in virtually all PCs today. Called the Controller-area network, or CAN-bus, it is designed to allow microcontrollers and devices to communicate with each other within a vehicle. Click the title for the main commentary!
It seems as if Tata Communications is out to one-up BSNL -- or at least claim its share of the limelight, anyway. More specifically, the outfit has teamed up with Telsima in order to roll out the "world's largest commercial WiMAX network" in India. Over 5,000 enterprise / retail customers are already connected in ten cities, and there are plans in place to secure nearly a quarter million customers in retail alone during fiscal year 2009. Furthermore, we're hearing that the services should be stretched to 110 cities for enterprise users and 15 cities for the retail segment by the year's end, but users in Delhi, Mumbai, Pune, Bangalore, Chennai, Hyderabad, Cochin, Chandigarh, and Kolkata are the only ones celebrating at the moment. Not a bad way to grab a bit more market share from Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited, eh?
Intel's had its new processor plans slipped out to the public thanks to Sun, according to DailyTech. Details on the 6-core (!) Xeon Dunnington, as well as the kinda-sorta hush-hush Nehalem were apparently leaked out onto Sun's public web server over the weekend, including plans for the new Xeons to overtake the company's Tigerton CPU line. The Dunnington processors will have a 16MB L3 cache shared by all six cores, and will be pin-compatible with the Tigertons, thus making integration with your Clarksboro chipset slightly less painful... by being possible. The Nehalem also got the spy treatment, with news that it will not only replace the Penryn line in Q4 '08, but will also be the first time in 18 years that Intel includes on-die memory controllers. If this sort of thing is important to you (and we think it may be) hit the read link and get all the juicy details.
Note: The Dunnington processor would be the first fully designed processor core out of Intel's India Design Center
If you've fantasized about how wonderful your life could be if the merits of DRAM, SRAM and Flash memory could all be mixed harmoniously into one "dream semiconductor," listen up. You may not be up to speed on all the advancements in ferroelectric materials, but we're pretty sure even the technological newbie could appreciate a new discovery by Korean researcher Dr. Shin Young-han. Reportedly, this fellow has "succeeded in figuring out the operational mechanism of ferroelectrics," which could potentially lead to FeRAM -- a technology that could "store data ten times faster than Flash memory and keep it for longer than ten years." Kudos to you, Dr. Shin, now let's get this stuff on the production line, shall we?