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Recent Readings

Book review: Darwinia
Reviewed: Friday, August 11, 2006

Summer reading: Spin
Reviewed: Saturday, August 5, 2006

Reviewed: Tuesday, July 18, 2006

the Omnivoire's Delimma
Reviewed: Wednesday, July 12, 2006

the Golem's Eye
Reviewed: Wednesday, May 31, 2006


Smart Radios
Wednesday, July 27, 2005

Wireless communication works because the makers of the sender and the receiver agreed to use a particular standard. There are already dozens of standards and more keep coming; furthermore, standards keep evolving and it takes time to implement them in hardware. This reduces flexibility and time to market. Suppose that the standards could be implemented in software instead of hardware? Then your radios could handle multiple standards and be upgraded easily in the field. Then groups from different communities (e.g., fire fighters and police or army and navy) could merge their radios simply and not be frustrated by communication disasters while coping with a disaster. Put it all together and you have Smart Radio. The Economist had a nice overview article but now it's only available for a few. If you want to really go out on a limb, you can instead talk about 'Cognitive Radio':

... the ultimate smart radio would be aware of its surroundings, be able to adapt itself in response and learn from experience...

Sounds almost scary! One thing I haven't seen in this coverage is how secure such things would be. I'd hate to have my radio break or only allow me to listen to certain stations (with lots of ads) because of a virus infection.


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Copyright -- Gary Warren King, 2004 - 2006