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Tuesday Afternoon (7 Comments) (link)
 Tuesday, 15-January-2013  15:39:03 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Gunna sent in this video about a lumpy tablet screen demonstrated at CES. When you can't feel individual keys on a touchscreen device it can be hard to type at speed. That is why Tactus, a company based in California, has developed technology which can turn a typical flat tablet screen into a real keyboard with bumpy buttons. The keyboard rises from the tablet when needed, before disappearing when the typing is done.

Vodafone will apparently be charging for blocks of 1MB of mobile data. The company will now charge for data in "blocks" of one megabyte rather than for actual usage, the Daily Telegraph reports. Next month Vodafone will also stop providing free access to social media sites, in a move that could force some prepaid customers to upgrade their plans.

The TSA have a blog post about the worrying things they've seized from people trying to board planes in 2012. A few examples would be bear mace in a sock, a spear gun, dead venomous snakes, a chastity belt, more cane swords than you could shake a cane sword at, a shocking amount of stun guns, a gassed up chainsaw, an 8oz. bottle of vodka discovered in a passenger's pants, a knife mounted on a walker, eels, prohibited bling, a marijuana filled grenade, another speargun, samurai swords, a stun cane, and jingle bell shotgun shells.

On a related note, a Qantas flight recently had a snake on a plane. QF191 was about 20 minutes into its 6.15am flight from Cairns to Port Moresby on Thursday when a woman pointed outside the plane and told cabin crew: ''There's a snake on the wing Ö There's its head and if you look closely you can see a fraction of its body.''

IBM's Watson supercomputer developed a potty mouth recently, with more info here, thanks Stygian. Ultimately, Brown's 35-person team developed a filter to keep Watson from swearing and scraped the Urban Dictionary from its memory. But the trial proves just how thorny it will be to get artificial intelligence to communicate naturally. Brown is now training Watson as a diagnostic tool for hospitals.

A Chinese web censor has expressed exasperation at the situation of being a web publisher there. If we donít delete your post, the alternative is that your account will be banned. This platform belongs to the public. It has changed our life and can exercise influence on the society and government through the spread of opinion.

Back to CES, and Tech Report think the the Oculus Rift is amazing. Immediately, I was plunged into an immersive environment with a true and robust sense of depth, with none of the flickering or momentary disorientation and focus problems associated with most stereoscopic 3D schemes. Meanwhile ArsTechnica think smart glasses need some work.

Yif spotted some robots at CES. Shown off at IFA 2012, Famibot is a service droid that can be controlled via your smartphone or any Wi-Fi connection. Its primary function is to roam around your floors and purify the air. When it senses a particularly dirty zone, such as cigarette smoke, it will focus on that area.

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All original content copyright James Rolfe. All rights reserved. No reproduction allowed without written permission.