quasi live feed from planet earths orbit…

“MIRAVI stands for MERIS Images RApid VIsualization and it’s a data-driven system for real time image rendering and quality analysis. Those images, though fascinating, are not suitable for scientific use. Scientists usually prefer to work with MERIS data products, which fully exploit the 15 spectral bands of the instrument, and which are generated with sophisticated algorithms.

MIRAVI generates the images directly from the MERIS raw data (i.e. the Level 0 data), usually available within 2 hours from data acquisition, depending whether the raw data have been transmitted directly to ground stations, or first recorded onboard then transmitted to ground stations.

The MIRAVI image processing does not intend to provide a very accurate geolocation or calibration. The high geolocation accuracy is achieved within the standard MERIS data products (less than ½ pixels).

MIRAVI generates the images using the MERIS Full Resolution (FR) mode (resolution about 260 m) which is activated systematically over land and coastal areas of Europe, Africa and Asia, and non-systematically over America. In its Reduced Resolution (RR) mode (resolution about 1200 m), MERIS operates systematically along its orbit illuminated by the sun.”

Source: http://miravi.eo.esa.int/en/

granny in space, what’s it to live 10 times longer than supposed?

Do you remember the landing of the two mars exploration vehicles calles Spirit and Opportunity in 2004? Well I think you do. They were built to last 90 days. But it’s now more than 1000 days – more than 10 times the timespan.

Well well, the two sneaky space travellers are kind of tattered – ones wheel isn’t working anymore and the other one had to get his brain “reformated” several times…but all over all they are in good shape for very old fellas.

Source: http://marsrovers.nasa.gov/home/

Go,Go, Gadget-o-Power-Suit!!

Everybody will need one of these when the guardians attack zion…

“In 1990, we started to develop a Wearable Power Assist Suit, and in 1991 we fabricated a Powered Arm constructing the master and slave system in one unit by utilizing a rubber tube air actuator and sensing cuff, [ref. 1]. In 1994, we developed a Wearable Powered Suit constructed with powered arms, a powered waist, and powered legs [ref. 2], and finally in 2002, we developed a Stand Alone Type Wearable Power Assist Suit [ref. 3]. This suit was composed of newly developed air bag actuators driven by micro air pumps, newly developed muscle hardness sensors, and an embedded micro computer. The muscle hardness sensor was developed for detecting the muscle force driving joints. The micro computer was for calculation of the necessary joints torques to lift heavy objects. The calculation equations was derived by body mechanics. This suit could run continuously 20 minutes with 12 volts Ni-Cd portable batteries. The latest power assist suit can generate higher assist power, and is composed of compact body, a compact embedded micro computer, small and flat rotary sensors, and has newly designed muscle sensors which are embedded in 3-D mesh [ref. 4].”

Source: http://www.we.kanagawa-it.ac.jp/~yamamoto_lab/pas/index.htm

get me a Cerbera or a Sagaris…you decide

I do like two car manufacturers (well, their cars to be precise) more than all the others. One of them is Mercedes-Benz and the other is…TVR. Yes, the brits.

They make great looking powerful sports cars and I hope one day one will be mine ;) They are quite affordable compared to other supercars – for example you can get a brand new TVR Sagaris (4l V6) for 80k EURO…a pre owned 2004 Cerbera (4.5l V8) comes for about 48k EURO…did I mention they do not come below 380 bhp and weigh as much as two packs of chewing gum? (I’ll have to pay royalties to Jeremy Clarkson for that…damn!).

The fact is that the Cerbera has gone out of official production in 2004. But now TVR is auctioning the last made Cerbera on the Internet:

Yes, you can get that brand new, pepper white, 420 bhp supercar…just sign up and bid…well if you have the money (which I don’t)…

Beside the Cerbera I fell in love with the Sagaris…look how gorgeous it is:


raaawwrrr!!

I just found the sagaris video:

If you want to buy me one…contact me :-)

Source 1: http://www.thelastcerbera.com/
Source 2: http://www.tvr.co.uk/overview_sagaris.php

how Google Map/Earth works…

I want to share with you a fantastic page where Pascal Buire discusses his investigations on Google Earths tiling and algorithms:

“This is my analyse about how google map works, et specially how the tiles are encoded. Google map uses pre-rendered tiles that can be obtained with a simple url. This article explains how to build the url for a tile from its geo coordinates (latitude/longitude)”

Google Earth mirroring anyone?

Source: http://www.codeproject.com/useritems/googlemap.asp

revisited: what’s the size of the earth compared to…and why earth needs a haircut…

A couple of days ago I wrote about a website that has some interesting pictures of the planets of our solar system compared to each other in size. The idea was great but the quality of the pictures was bad. So we decided to push our knowledge about 3D tools a bit and render our own high-quality version.

But first a before-after comparision:


before

Aaaaaand:


after

Tell us what you think of it!

We will add some more pictures in the next hours, beside that a short movie in 720p is in the rendering process at the moment.

Last time I worked with 3D tools they were called “3D Studio Max 3.0″…which is quite a while ago. 3D Studios current version number is 8… You can grab your own trial version here.

We actually experimented a lot with the tools…look what earth became after just seconds of play:


yes,we even hair-styled earth!

Source 1: original article and picture
Source 2: 3D Studio MAX trial

spot the IIS…the space station not the web server…

“A number of amateur astronomers and Space Station enthusiasts regularly take photos as ISS rises above the horizon in westerly direction and sets towards the East. In response to a recent article on this website, you sent us some of your ISS images. A selection of your photos is presented below.”

Source: http://www.esa.int/esaCP/SEMY46XAIPE_index_0.html

cracking galileo positioning system and talking about it…

The americans managed to crack…well they call it different but the fact remains that they cracked the PRN codes of the european global non-military positioning system called “Galileo

“Because GPS satellites, which were put into orbit by the Department of Defense, are funded by U.S. taxpayers, the signal is free — consumers need only purchase a receiver. Galileo, on the other hand, must make money to reimburse its investors — presumably by charging a fee for PRN codes.”

Source 1: http://www.newswise.com/articles/view/521790/?sc=rsla

Source 2: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Galileo_positioning_system

meet the Jetsons: a new type of elevator

Have you ever seen the Jetsons? If so, you might remember the vacuum elevators. Well. If you ever wanted to have one of those, you can now:

“It is our self-supporting vacuum elevator; a light and resistant structure built with aluminium and polycarbonate. By simple principles of physics; the difference in air pressure above and beneath the vacuum elevator cab literally transports you by air. It is the vacuum pumps or turbines that pull you up to the next Floor and the slow release of air pressure that floats you down.

Pneumatic Vacuum Elevators are easier to install, maintain, and operate than traditional elevators. They are especially ideal for existing homes due to their compact design because excavating a pit, and hoistway are not required. Air pressure above and beneath the elevator cab are the key to transporting.

The reliability and safety of these vacuum elevators are unsurpassed due to the physics behind the design; it is virtually impossible to get stuck between floors, or freefall.”

Source: daytonyelevators

the quiet revolution

“An elegant vertical-axis wind turbine, quietrevolution has been designed and developed by XCO2, an established low-carbon energy consultancy and engineering practice.

Virtually silent and vibration free, quietrevolution is ideally suited to both urban sites and exposed locations.

The simple and robust design (patent pending) has just one moving part, maximising reliability and minimising maintenance requirements.”

Vertical-axis wind turbines not only look very sci-fi, but when you add LEDs to the border of the turbine you can use them as a display:

So I leave you with a patent pending revolution which produces power and is virtually silent…whatever that means.

Source: http://www.quietrevolution.co.uk/

PS3 and all the fuss about it



Despite focusing on the lies we were told about the PS3 in the last year and months here are the hard facts with the source of the information for backup:




  • You won’t get HDMI and Wireless LAN with the “cheap” EURO 499,- version which means you even won’t get BlueRay-HDTV movies with this SKU.


  • 32,5 cm x 9.8 cm x 27,4 cm and 5 kg is HUGE compared to:



    • The Xbоx 360 weights 3.5 kg and is 30,9 cm x 8,3 cm x 25,8 cm
      or even


    • The Xbоx weight 4 kg and is 32,0 cm x 10,1 cm x 26,0 cm


  • you won’t get a controller with rumble/vibration… because of the innovative motion sensors…


  • you get GigaBit ethernet… for what purpose?

stay tuned for more tales of interest…


Source 1: PS3 press release
Source 2: PS3 controller press release

BMW 320i touring on the road…

Sixt gave me a brand new BMW 320i touring. What a great car! It could use some more bhp but it was fun to drive in every way: Fast and Slow.


Since my GPS logging tool is not working at the moment I just made a picture of the timer that comes with BMWs iDrive. So it’s 9 Minutes 25 seconds for the complete racetrack…very nice.

flow – a flash game that really relaxes

What a game! It’s one of the most relaxing games I’ve played in the last months… going to sleep now

How to Play?

What am I suppose to do?

  • Dive deep into the space eat and evolve

Control

  • Use Mouse Cursor to guide your creature
  • Hold on Left Mouse Button to accelerate

Tips

  • Red makes you dive down
  • Blue brings you back up
  • Filling up your body to grow longer
  • + makes your current body segment evolve
  • Move slowly to make smaller turns



Source: http://intihuatani.usc.edu/cloud/flowing/core.html

AIM…oh well not the Instant Messenger…but Accurate Image Manipulation…

When it comes to washed-out colors…or green/red/blue tinted displays… try to calibrate them with the help of this great site. Thanks to Kiesow.

“Accurate Image Manipulation for Desktop Publishing (AIM) is devoted for the best possible quality in the desktop publishing workflow. This calls for accurate calibration and correct choice for the working space.

Very accurate monitor gamma calibration charts, CGI simulations for Kodak Q-60 and Agfa IT8 calibration targets, Photoshop plug-ins and much more are available for download. Many evaluations are provided.

The calibration setup that is in use in high-end professional digital imaging, the linear workflow, is explained here in detail as well as the issues of CRT gamma.



this is NOT usable for calibration…go to the site…

Source 1: http://www.kiesows.de/blog/2006/03/11/kalibrieren

Source 2: http://www.aim-dtp.net/aim/evaluation/cdg/cdg.htm

after a week: update, speakers acting, 22c3, my 360 and more…


I did not write for over a week now – I simply had no time to write – but now I want to give you a short update on what happened the last days:


2. December: the 360 arrives. I had only some time to unpack and testdrive PGR3 – in fact it’s what was promised – the next generation gaming console. (please make a firmware update so that the DVD drive is more quiet).



yes, there’s an apple keyboard attached to the 360.


To raise the pain-bar the desperatly needed XBOX VGA cable is not available anywhere around. I actually have to wait till it’s available again. Until then I am using the 360 via PAL-60 – which is – oh well …


There are some nice and some bad things to say about the 360 – one thing I just found out and impressed me: when you want to type – let’s say in XBOX live – you might want to use the on-screen keyboard. But when you attach a commonly used USB keyboard to the 360 – you can use it for the typing job … I wasn’t expecting that.


late last week I attended the 3rd “Speakers Acting” Training held by Vision Voices Executives Alexandra Schwarze and Martin Marx. As you can imagine it was a fantastic and enriching experience.



And the this weekend it finally happened: SIXT gave me my the first V6 – a Mercedes Benz ML320 – what a … hell of a car.



hmm… a SUV at >220 km/h… hrhr eat this mother nature!


Oh, I almost forgot to tell you what I did with the addictive ML – We took a trip to Berlin to meet with the guys of the Chaos Computer Club Berlin who are organising the 22th Chaos Communication Congress. As things work out we will be in Berlin at 25th of december with 10 people – recording and streaming the whole congress for you. Working closely together with the guys from congress-tv, congress-streaming… I can only cross fingers and hope that everything is going to happen as planned and discussed.



Source 1: http://www.visionvoice.de
Source 2: http://www.ccc.de
Source 3: http://www.ccc.de/congress/2005

storage space sizes for removable media growing…


Finally there are definitive words about holographic storage medias. Maxell made a press release today of it’s upcoming 300 GByte holographic medias – yeah!


“With uncompressed storage capacities achieving 1.6 TeraBytes per disk and data rates as high as 120 MBPs.”



“One 5¼ inch-diameter optical disc can store up to 150 million pages – more than 63 times the capacity of DVD. Also, with holographic recording, a multiple of form factors, such as discs, cards, etc., and laser wavelengths (red, green, and blue) can be used. “



“The first generation of holographic media with 300 GB of storage capacity and a 20 MBPs Transfer Rate is scheduled for release in late 2006.”


Source: Maxell-USA

when you want ISDN…you get ISDN… well leave all the work to us… T-COM


The T-COM was supposed to install some ISDN lines – and what did they do? Take a wire and span it across the server room… why not…!!!!!!!!!!!!!!




and as if this wouldn’t be enough…make it go through the CLOSED window…


Mercedes Benz SLK 200 Kompressor on the “racetrack”

average speed: 193,373239 km/h
top speed: 234 km/h
duration: 00:09:38
track length: 30,51 km



It’s my favourite car. And Sixt was so kind to offer me a “free ride”… this thing is awesome. Finally I got to drive one with compressor. Mercedes listen! I want one! Now!





GPS-Logfile: GPS20051121205829-568.zip (29,65 KB)

use TerraServer Webservices with Visual Studio 2005


Nico wrote a cool article about the TerraServer WebService and how to use it with Visual Studio 2005. He uses this WebService in his talks as a WebService example – a great idea: The problem is now, that the example sourcecode does not work under Visual Studio 2005. So he changed it to work – and you can download the new sourcecode here.



Source 1: Nico’s Weblog
Source 2: TerraServer WebService
Source 3: Example Source
Source 4: Download VS2005 compatible Sourcecode