We will no longer need computers in the future, according to Fujitsu, which showcased the “first genuine Zero Client” at the CeBIT 2010 international information and communication technology show, held in Hanover, Germany, from March 2 to 6.
This ‘intelligent screen’ requires no opera- ting system, no processor, no applications and no local data storage. All it needs is a network card and a source of electricity. The screen connects to a desktop virtual machine located in a cloud or a corporate network.
Fujitsu says companies can reduce their overheads by using a Zero Client because the system has lower maintenance costs and a longer service life than traditional computers. It says setting up new workstations will be fast and more cost effective for companies with this technology.
The device is intended primarily for government departments, banks and offices, as well as call centres and healthcare facilities.
3-D Cinema on Your Living-Room Wall
You love films, but hate cinemas? Well, now you can enjoy three-dimensional (3-D) blockbusters like Avatar from the comfort of your own armchair! The new H5360 3D from Acer makes it possible for people to watch movies in all screen sizes at home.
Combined with a computer, a compatible graphics card and special 3-D glasses, the Acer H5360 turns your living room wall into a 3-D screen.
The system works by rendering every image twice,once for the right eye and once for the left. These are then superimposed with an offset. This image information is sent to the Acer H5360, which projects it onto the wall at a frequency of 120 Hz. Viewers wear 3-D glasses that have a battery-operated infrared transmitter which connects to a computer through the USB port. The glasses are synchronised with the projector and open and close the right and left lenses at a frequency of 60 Hz. The result is uninterrupted 3-D film viewing pleasure.
Using Electricity When it Costs the Least
With the increasing use of solar and wind power, the price and availability of electricity is expected to fluctuate considerably in the future. Consumers should, therefore, aim to use electricity when it is available at the lowest price. At CeBIT 2010, the Fraunhofer Institute for Experimental Software Engineering demonstrated how this can be achieved with new software that adjusts energy consumption as required.
The system is based on software installed on a home computer. This allows users to define electricity consumption rules. Users can set the temperature for air conditioning or heating, for example, or specify the highest price that they are willing to pay for each kilowatt hour or set a maximum consumption level. The software then calculates when the home appliances should be switched on and off, and controls the appliances directly through electricity cables or remotely.
The system regularly obtains the necessary information regarding expected price movements from the energy provider. However, this new power control device does not just switch appli-ances on and off – the system also uses it for energy purposes; for example, if the energy provider advises that the price of electricity is expected to rise, refrigerators and freezers can prechill their contents, ensuring that they require no electricity for some time afterwards.
Wireless Keyboard Doubles Up As Mini Mouse
It is black, weighs just 200 g and fits in your hand like a remote control – it is the Air keyboard from MSI. The Taiwanese hardware manufacturer showcased this stylish wireless keyboard, which can also be used as a computer mouse. A built-in movement sensor allows this petite keyboard to function like a 3-D mouse – all you need to do to move the cursor is to tilt the keyboard up or down, or left or right. The left and right mouse buttons are located on the forward edges of the device, just like the buttons on Xbox and PlayStation controllers.
With its small keypad, this mini keyboard is most suitable for typing short messages and texts. But the clever thing about the Air keyboard is that, besides the usual keyboard functions, it has multimedia buttons for controlling music and video playback. The device connects to the computer through Bluetooth and has a range of up to 50 m.
Read My Lips
How do you understand someone who is moving his or her lips, but is not produc- ing a sound? The answer to this riddle could be found at CeBIT 2010, courtesy of researchers from the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology.
The technology behind this innovation uses electromyography. Electrical activity produced by muscles as they contract during the act of speech is translated into language through several stations. The system could make it easier for people suffering from a damaged larynx to communicate or could allow telephopne calls to be made without the risk of bugging.
Edited by: Martin Zhuwakinyu
Creamer Media Senior Deputy Editor
EMAIL THIS ARTICLE