|Ken Novak's Weblog
Purpose of this blog: to retain annotated bookmarks for my future reference, and to offer others my filter technology and other news. Note that this blog is categorized. Use the category links to find items that match your interests.
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Saturday, October 12, 2002
MPEG-4 zooms in on new video codec:
"Known as H.264, among other designations, the new format is turning heads over claims that it can deliver DVD-quality broadcasts over the Internet using considerably fewer network resources than rivals. " The new format requires 3-4x the computing power of other codecs, but delivers video at 1 mbps, compared to 4 mbps in MPEG-2 and 1.5 mbps in other MPEG-4 codecs. The article has a good review of the MPEG formats and recent issues in its adoption. 10:14:37 PM
80% of China's computers have viruses: "Viruses have infected at least 80 percent of China's computers, the official China Daily newspaper said on Thursday, highlighting the vulnerability of one of the world's biggest PC and Internet markets. The findings were the result of a six-week survey conducted by the National Computer Virus Emergency Response Center, the newspaper said. .. China added 12 million new Internet users in the first six months of this year, pushing its total to more than 45 million, official data show. " 10:03:24 PM
Converting sewage to hydrogen:
"Waste from sewage plants could be transformed into clean hydrogen fuel with high efficiency using new processing technology devised in Europe. The process involves extracting hydrogen from "wet" waste, i.e. that which contains large amounts of water, such as sewage or paper mill waste. Although this sort of waste is abundant, extracting hydrogen from has required a large amount of energy, making it inefficient.. The new process begins with turning waste "biomass" into hydrogen, methane, water, carbon monoxide and carbon dioxide, using standard gasification techniques that involve heat and pressure. But further hydrogen is then produced by also breaking down the methane and water with the aid of a nanocrystalline catalyst. " 10:00:47 PM
Electricity from microbial fuel cells? "A battery that runs on scraps of food could fuel a battery providing electricity to top up your home's supply, say UK researchers. Although such "microbial fuel cells" (MFCs) have been developed in the past, they have always proved extremely inefficient and expensive. Now Chris Melhuish and technologists at the University of the West of England (UWE) in Bristol have come up with a simplified MFC that costs as little as £10 to make. Inside the Walkman-sized battery, a colony of E. coli bacteria produce enzymes that break down carbohydrates, releasing hydrogen atoms. The cell also contains chemicals that drive a series of redox, or reduction and oxidation reactions, stripping electrons from the hydrogen atoms and delivering them steadily to the fuel cell's anode. This creates a voltage that can be used to power a circuit. .. [When] connected in series, they could power domestic appliances, running a 40-watt bulb for eight hours on about 50 grams of sugar." 9:58:43 PM
Rainy Japanese island going for hydrogen economy
: "Yakushima, a volcanic island off southern Kyushu, is planning an energy revolution. The island--which is on the World Heritage List for its thousand-year-old cedar trees--will shun the use of petroleum and other fossil fuels in favor of clean hydrogen energy in an effort to stop the emission of carbon dioxide, the main culprit of global warming. Yakushima has embarked on an experimental project to use hydrogen as the sole energy source for the island's 14,000 people. " Recent run-of-river hydro projects yield 60MW, which significantly exceeds local electric grid requirements. More hydro and wind are available. 1:02:47 AM