So here we are at Wednesday, and the prediction for this morning was not good. But look at it this way… AccuWeather, which is usually pretty reliable out to about 10 days or so, says back into the 50s by next week. So laugh at this white glop on the ground… it’ll be gone soon! And now, your favorite blend of local, national and global tech news…
* If you know of a girl currently finishing grades 4 through 7, who is interested in building video games, websites or robots, let her know about Camp Infinity, the Michigan Council of Women in Technology’s summer technology camp for girls. This year, Camp Infinity has been expanded to four locations in Southfield, Detroit, and Howell. Applications are now open for the weeklong, hands-on experience. Participants will learn about technology from professional university staff, certified teachers and counselors, and will have lunches with IT professionals. Complete the application at http://mcwt.org/Camp_Infinity_185.html along with a brief letter of recommendation from a teachor or organization. MCWT’s corporate sponsors cover the cost of the camp; attendees pay a $30 registration fee, which is refundable for those not selected. For details, contact Camp Director, Julie Patterson at firstname.lastname@example.org. The camps run June 16-20 at the Livingston Educational Service Agency in Howell, June 23-27 at the University of Detroit Mercy in Detroit, July 7-11 at Lawrence Technological University in Southfield and July 14-18 at Wayne State University in Detroit. The camp runs from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Thursday and 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Fridays. The Howell program is for fourth and fifth graders only, the Detroit and Southfield programs are for fourth, fifth, sixth and seventh graders.
* Michigan State University will host the fourth annual MSU Innovation Celebration Wednesday, April 16 from 4 to 6 p.m. at the Huntington Club in Spartan Stadium. The event will see the introduction of MSU’s Innovator of the Year, Innovation of the Year, and the MSU Technology Transfer Achievement Award. The celebration also showcases a diverse range of the many inventions and technologies developed in campus labs: from bomb-detecting lasers to documentary films to surgical models, the technologies on display illustrate how MSU drives innovation and economic development in mid-Michigan and beyond. Register at this link.
* The story of the Michigan Science Center is that of rebirth and commitment — a commitment to keep science, technology and engineering in the forefront of young students’ minds and to keep the center a part of Detroit’s cultural attractions. On Thursday, March 27, the Engineering Society of Detroit will host Tonya Matthews, president and CEO of the science center, who will outline the center’s growth strategy, as well as the technology behind some of its new science, engineering and technology-related exhibits for kids and adults. Matthews assumed leadership of the Science Center in October 2013. Her diverse background includes academic and professional work as a scientist in biomedical engineering, educator, community volunteer and award-winning writer-poet, as well as a member of the boards of directors for the American Alliance of Museums and Chatfield College. Prior to joining the science center, Matthews served as vice president of museums for the Cincinnati Museum Center, directing the education, research and community engagement footprints of the three-museum, three-research center, multi-site institution. She completed her doctoral work at Johns Hopkins University in biomedical engineering and baccalaureate studies at Duke University in biomedical and electrical engineering. Her undergraduate degree also includes a certificate in African/African-American studies. She is the recipient of a Whitaker Foundation Award for Engineering Excellence, and is an alumnus of the National Society of Black Engineers and the Society for Women Engineers. More about the science center at http://www.mi-sci.org. This program is part of ESD’s Business Over Breakfast series. Cost to attend is $35 for ESD members; $50 for non-members and includes a continental breakfast. Non-members can join ESD for $114 and attend the program for free. (This offer is available for first-time members only.) For more information, contact Della Cassia at (248) 353-0735, ext. 112. To register, visit http://www.esd.org or call (248) 353-0735.
* The Michigan Council of Women in Technology will sponsor a Mid-Michigan ConnectNet Forum on agile methodology. Panelists include Brenda Kendall, PMP, Scrum Master at Michigan Millers Mutual Insurance; Tonya McCarley, Associate Manager, User Experience Design at Ithaka; Holly Bielawa, SPC, Requirements Craftsman at Agile Growth Strategies; and Kim Manuel, PMP, Business Transformation Specialist at Agile Business Performance Improvement LLC. The event will take place at the Lansing campus of Davenport University, 200 S. Grand Ave., Room 305, from 5:30 to 8 p.m. The event is free for members and students, $10 for nonmembers. Register at https://mcwt.org/civicrm/event/register?reset=1&id=20.
* The Troy-based solidThinking Inc. subsidiary of Altair Engineering announced the availability of LiveLinking, a compete integration between solidThinking’s Evolve software and KeyShot, realtime rendering software developed with Irvine, Calif.-based Luxion Inc. The companies said the new integration allows users to generate photographic images and animations of their designs quickly and easily. LiveLinking enables continuous updates to KeyShot scenes directly from Evolve, speeding up the design process and eliminating the rework associated with design changes. In solidThinking Evolve, users are able to explore styling and design solutions with the freedom of organic surfaces and parametric, history-based solids. Now, with a single click, users can export the model directly from Evolve into KeyShot. In KeyShot, users may apply scientifically accurate materials, real-world lighting, and animations to the model through simple drag-and-drop operations while seeing the results in real-time. With this integration, changes to the model in Evolve will automatically update the geometry in KeyShot without the need to re-apply materials, lighting, animations, or camera views. This eliminates rework, streamlining the workflow and freeing up time for more creative tasks. The KeyShot Integration for solidThinking Evolve is available free of charge and is included in solidThinking Evolve 2014. More details are available at solidThinking.com/Evolve, including video overviews of the new KeyShot LiveLinking feature, the enhanced user interface, and how hybrid modeler Evolve releases designers from the constraints of engineering-oriented CAD while preserving its flexibility. SolidThinking was started in 1991 to meet the needs of Italian industrial designers, and acquired by Altair in 2008.
* JobFairGiant.com will sponsor the Hired in Detroit Job Fair Thursday, March 27 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Holiday Inn Hotel, 17201 Northline Road in Southgate. This will be the largest face-to-face interview job fair featuring over 50 recruiters with 500 immediate positions available. The purpose of this job fair is to eliminate the wait and see process that many job seekers experience when applying for positions, candidates have the opportunity to meet company recruiters face-to-face and interview for available positions at the Hired in Detroit Job Fair. Over 50 companies will be ready to interview experienced job seekers, veterans, college graduates, industry professionals and entry-level candidates for immediate job placement. Participating companies will hire in the engineering, manufacturing, sales, finance, banking, restaurants, driving, customer service, management, retail, IT, machining, medical and many other career fields. Candidates should prepare to interview with recruiters onsite interview clothing is mandatory, bring at least 50 resume copies. Companies include Quicken Loans, Target Steel, Uncle Ed’s Oil Shoppe, Global Information Technology, First Financial Insurance Group, The Art Institute, New York Life Insurance, New Horizons Computer Learning Center, C-Mac Transportation, Auto Warehousing Company, Goodwill Industries of Greater Detroit, H & H Wholesale Distributors, Waddell & Reed Financial Advisors, Match RX, Titan Solutions, Rxtra Solutions, Walden University (Student Recruitment Only), Dorsey Schools, International Trucking School – Recruiting Students, and many other local and national employers. For candidates who need resume or cover letter assistance, resume writing experts will be onsite to provide free resume evaluations and tips. More at http://www.JobFairGiant.com.
* The Ann Arbor PLM management consulting and research firm CIMdata Inc. has announced a new research effort on enterprise innovation management, a key set of strategies that are helping global companies bridge the chasm between corporate strategy and purposeful action across a wide spectrum of business operations. EIM helps link company strategy to execution leveraging a range of other enterprise solutions, including ERP, PLM, CRM, enterprise asset management, and program and portfolio management. As part of this effort, CIMdata and Sopheon, a leading provider of EIM solutions, are collaborating on primary research about how companies are ensuring strategic business alignment including a survey on this important topic. Survey participants will receive a summary report on the study results. For more information on the survey, please see www.CIMdata.com/innovation. In the coming weeks, CIMdata will publish a paper on EIM and PLM, and will collaborate with Sopheon on a Webcast about the research and initial survey results.
* The Southfield private investment firm Cascade Partners LLC has added David A. Strickler as a vice president. Strickler brings 15 years of investment banking, private equity, venture capital and asset management experience to the firm, including numerous transaction and advisory assignments. In addition, he has substantial operational experience in manufacturing, healthcare services, information technologies and software development. Over the course of his career, Strickler’s responsibilities have included structuring and executing M&A transactions, and managing portfolio companies, including actively working with company leadership at the board level for numerous technology companies. Strickler has also played significant operating roles at companies such as Case Management Consultants, a healthcare service provider, NextGen Healthcare, a healthcare software company, Inforth Technologies, a healthcare IT service firm, and Nissan Motor, an automotive OEM. Strickler graduated from Tennessee Tech with a bachelor of science degree in electrical engineering. He also holds an MBA from Vanderbilt University’s Owen School of Business Administration. More at http://www.cascade-partners.com.
* The Michigan Film Office announced the feature film “The End of the Tour” has been approved for a film incentive from the state. Based on the book “Although of Course You End Up Becoming Yourself,” the project is currently filming in Grand Rapids and surrounding communities. The End of the Tour was awarded an incentive of $495,380 on $2,105,652 of projected in-state expenditures. The project is expected to hire 66 Michigan workers with a full time equivalent of 12 jobs. The film is based on the true events of a four-day long interview conducted by Rolling Stone Magazine writer, David Lipsky with acclaimed author David Foster Wallace. The interview took place in the final days of Wallace’s 1996 book tour promoting his landmark novel, “Infinite Jest.” The road movie is an extended dramatic and comedic conversation between the two men exploring women, depression, writing, success and jealousy. The project stars Jason Segel (The Five-Year Engagement, The Muppets) as David Foster Wallace and Jesse Eisenberg (30 Minutes or Less, The Social Network) as David Lipsky. It is being directed by James Ponsoldt. In Fiscal Year 2014, five projects have been awarded $40,980,829 on $153,887,708 of approved production expenditures for the year. These projects are expected to create 780 hires with a full time equivalent of 763 jobs. The Michigan Film Office was created in 1979 to assist and attract incoming production companies and promote the growth of Michigan’s own film industry. The Film Office also administers the incentive program for film, television and other digital media production in Michigan. For more on the Michigan Film Office, visit MichiganFilmOffice.org.
And now the national and international stuff, courtesy of CBS News, CNet’s News.com and elsewhere…
* Happy 25th birthday Internet! Here’s a fun look at one man’s journey through 25 years of dot-com-dom.
* And here’s the kind of thing the web was made for — the Oscar Mayer bacon app, complete with a gadget that spews vaporized bacon scent into the air when the alarm goes off. It’s called Wake Up & Smell the Bacon. And you can apply to be a lucky bacon gizmo beta tester at the official Wake Up & Smell the Bacon site.
* Our friends at SpaceX want to go to Mars — and have a realistic-sounding technology plan to get there. Part of it has the promising name Mars Colonial Transport — sending 100 colonists at a time to Mars.
* Speaking of space, in Ukraine, superpower cooperation continued unabated Monday with two cosmonauts and a NASA astronaut departing the International Space Station aboard a Russian Soyuz ferry craft and plunging to a landing in snowy Kazakhstan to close out a 166-day mission. Landing in arctic conditions, the Soyuz TMA-10M crew module settled to a jarring parachute-and-rocket-assisted touchdown at 11:24 p.m. Eastern time (9:24 a.m. Tuesday local time).
* On the third anniversary of the earthquake, tsunami and disaster at the Fukushima nuclear power plant in Japan, the ever so slightly radioactive water of which is just now reaching American shores on the ocean current, here’s a harrowing first-hand account of the events on March 11, 2011.
* Stanford University’s campus has a large central quad full of plants, flowers, trees and pedestrian walkways — this was Apple late co-founder Steve Jobs’ vision for the design of the company’s upcoming futuristic spaceship-like campus. Architecture firm Foster + Partners is heading the project, which is slated to be done in 2016. The firm’s founder, Norman Foster, recently spoke to Architectural Record about the thinking behind the new headquarters. Jobs laid out plans for the campus in 2011. The facility is expected to have four stories and span a whopping 2.8 million square feet. Apple said in 2011 that it hopes to have 12,000 people on the campus — up from about 2,800 in its current headquarters.
* Twenty of the passengers aboard that missing Malaysia flight work with Freescale Semiconductor, a company based in Austin, Texas. The company said that 12 of the employees are from Malaysia and eight are from China.
* Marcus Stern and Sebastian Jones report on Bloomberg that as federal regulators continue investigating why tank cars on three trains carrying North Dakota crude oil have exploded in the past eight months, energy experts say part of the problem might be that some producers are deliberately leaving too much propane in their product, making the oil riskier to transport by rail.
* According to Colin Angle, CEO and founder of advanced robotics company iRobot, the idea of having a humanoid robot like Sonny in Isaac Asimov’s Robot series or the robot butler in futuristic cartoon The Jetsons, is pretty unlikely. “Building a robot that has legs and walks around is a very expensive proposition,” Angle tells International Business Times UK.
* What if it were possible to explore your brain in virtual reality, watching your thoughts flashing before your eyes? A neuroscientist and a videogame developer have created a way to do precisely that. A new system developed by Philip Rosedale, creator of the game Second Life, and Adam Gazzaley, a neuroscientist at the University of California San Francisco, combines brain scanning, brain recording and virtual reality to allow a user tojourney through a person’s brain in real-time. Rosedale and Gazzaley demonstrated this “glass brain” at the South by Southwest (SXSW) Interactive festival on Monday.
* Wild elephants can distinguish between human languages, and they can tell whether a voice comes from a man, woman or boy, a new study says. That’s what researchers found when they played recordings of people for elephants in Kenya. Scientists say this is an advanced thinking skill that other animals haven’t shown. It lets elephants figure out who is a threat and who isn’t.