by Suzanne Deffree @ edn.com:
Intel announced its 4004 processor and its chipset through an ad in Electronic News on November 15, 1971, making them the first complete CPU on one chip and the first commercially available microprocessor.
The building-block 4004 CPU held 2300 transistors. The microprocessor, the size of a little fingernail, delivered the same computing power as the first electronic computer built in 1946, which, in contrast, filled a room. Full technical details for the 4004 can be found in this January 1972 EDN story on the technology: One-Chip CPU available for low-cost dedicated computers.
Intel 4004 is announced, November 15, 1971 – [Link]
In a serious case of out-of-the-box thinking, a design team at Roost in Sunnyvale California have come up with a method to add Wi-Fi connectivity to your old smoke or carbon monoxide alarm by just swapping batteries. Your smoke detector uses a 9 V PP3-type battery right? The new Roost battery contains 9 V lithium cells together with a processor and Wi-Fi chip in the standard PP3-sized battery outline. It monitors the battery voltage and power drain to alert you via Wi-Fi and a smartphone app when the alarm has been triggered, even if you are not at home.
New Battery Smarts-up your Smoke Detector – [Link]
by Junko Yoshida @ edn.com:
As automotive electronics takes center stage at Electronica this week in Munich, a “microcamera” module recently designed by researchers at the Fraunhofer Institute for driver-assistance applications is expected to enjoy the spotlight.
The new camera module — an image sensor with optics mounted on a printed circuit board — measures 16x16x12 cubic millimeters. It is visibly smaller than current-generation driver-assist cameras, whose edge lengths are “20x20x20 cubic millimeters (without optics),” according to a Fraunhofer press release.
CogniVue, Fraunhofer debut supersmall camera at Electronica – [Link]
The Raspberry Pi Foundation has unveiled the Raspberry Pi A+ – a smaller version of its original Model A – that costs only $20. The Model A+ is significantly smaller than the Model A (65 mm in length versus 86 mm), consumes less power, uses the BCM2835 application processor, and has 256 MB RAM.
$20 Raspberry Pi Model A+ is smaller, uses less power – [Link]
Representatives from the Fraunhofer Institute for Photonic Microsystems IPMS in Dresden will be showing off their Li-Fi wireless communication system at the upcoming electronica exhibition held in Munich from November 11 to 14. The system uses infra-red light as the transmission medium and can transfer data at a speed of up to 1 Gigabit per second over a distance of up to 10 meters.
Li-Fi Goes Live at electronica – [Link]
by Darren Quick @ gizmag.com:
It can be a herculean task to get kids to eat their vegetables, but they’ll happily chow down on things they aren’t supposed to. If one of those things is a button battery, serious injuries can result in the form of burns to the esophagus or tears in the digestive tract. Researchers may not have found a way to stop kids swallowing button batteries, but they have found a way to make such culinary no-nos safer.
Coating makes swallowing batteries safer for curious kids – [Link]
by David Szondy @ gizmag.com:
Getting into the Guinness Book of World Records isn’t just about who can eat the most hotdogs or fly a paper airplane the highest. Sometimes it involves technological breakthroughs with huge potential. Guinness has handed DARPA’s Terahertz Electronics program the award for the fastest solid-state amplifier integrated circuit. Developed by Northrop Grumman, the Terahertz Monolithic Integrated Circuit (TMIC) is a ten-stage common-source amplifier that cranks speeds of one terahertz (10^12 Hz), or one trillion cycles per second.
DARPA circuit smashes electronic speed record – [Link]
Paul Buckley @ edn.com:
MIT researchers have developed a circuit design that could make simple superconducting devices with zero electrical resistance much cheaper to manufacture, and which would be 50 to 100 times as energy efficient as today’s chips. Even though the circuits’ speed probably would not top that of today’s chips, they could solve the problem of reading out the results of calculations performed with Josephson junctions.
Simpler superconducting promised by nanowire device – [Link]
by iFixit Video @ youtube.com:
Its been two years since the last full redesign for the iphone, and we couldn’t be more anxious to see the new upgrade up close. So we sent our Teardown team all the way to Melbourne, Australia to get the first look inside the new iPhone 6.
The iPhone 6 Teardown Review – [Link]