Cell Phone Carrier Ratings

Cell phone carrier ratings, CNN App for iPhone, Traffic light systems, Windows Mobile 6.5, Kindle.

News, tips and information impacting your life through technology.

Show Notes Episode 11

What’s New in Tech!

According to Loopinsight.com, Apple amending iPhone developer agreement to include VoIP apps.  With AT&T’s decision on Tuesday to enable the use of VoIP apps on its network, Apple is moving quickly to make changes for its developers.

According to Neowin.net, Microsoft announces availability of Windows phones.  October 6th is being marked as the last day of the “Windows Mobile” device brand as Microsoft has announced the availability of Windows Phones worldwide at an exclusive event in NYC hosted by Robbie Bach, president of Microsoft’s Entertainment and Devices Division. The devices announced today ship with Windows Mobile 6.5, which has been a long time coming.

According to Reuters, Amazon.com takes Kindle global.  The move, announced on Tuesday, gives the world’s largest online retailer the widest global reach among its competitors, including chief rival Sony Corp. The Kindle will sell for $279 in other countries.  Amazon also said it would cut prices for its U.S.-only Kindle by 13 percent to $259 from $299, bringing its cost closer to its rivals. The new price is $100 lower than it was a year ago.

Topics

1. Rating the Carriers: Customer Service Showdown (More information under the Contents drop down menu, if you didn’t see it)

2. CNN app for iPhone – user based news

Discussion of the Cast

How do they detect cars at traffic lights?

Some traffic lights are done using timed events.  It does not matter if there is a car there or not, it goes off at a certain time for one direction, and then for the other. To detect if cars are at a light, coils are placed within the road to trigger the light to go green.  It does a constant loop with the coil and actual light.

Traffic Signal Preemption

Traffic preemption devices are implemented in a variety of ways. For example, they can be installed on road vehicles, integrated with train transportation network management systems, or operated by remote control from a fixed location, such as a fire station, or by a 9-1-1 dispatcher at an emergency call center.

Vehicular devices can be switched on or off as needed, but in the case of emergency vehicles they are frequently integrated with the vehicle’s emergency warning lights. When activated, the traffic premption device will cause properly-equipped traffic lights in the path of the vehicle to cycle immediately, to grant right-of-way in the desired direction, after allowing for normal programmed time delays for signal changes and pedestrian crosswalks to clear.

(FYI: Most OptiCom devices, those on top of light poles used for detection, are paid for 50/50 between ambulatory providers and public safety agencies depending upon jurisdictional boundaries)

Device Types: Line of Sight, GPS, Radio Signal

Red Light Cameras

They rely on the following:

*  One or more cameras
*  One or more triggers
*  A computer

The cameras are mounted on poles a few yards high and the cameras are pointed inward.  Then it uses triggers, like the coils mentioned above, to detect a car at a certain part of the road.  When the car hits the triggers when the light turns read the computer, sets off the camera to take a picture at the beginning and middle of the infraction.

Has this changed our driving habits? Do you consider this another distraction? Law enforcement has found needs elsewhere (drug trafficking, domestic violence, gang activity, etc)

Fun Fact: Red-light cameras have been around for more than 40 years, but they’ve only gained widespread popularity in the past decade.

Moving to LED Lighting for Traffic Lights

*  LEDs are brighter. The LED arrays fill the entire “hole” and have equal brightness across the entire surface, making them brighter overall.

*  LED bulbs last for years, while halogen bulbs last for months. Replacing bulbs costs money for the trucks and people who do the work, and it also ties up traffic. Increasing the replacement interval can save a city big dollars.

*  LED bulbs save a lot of energy.

Tip or Site of Interest

Steve:  Tip on pst files :  Limit the file size to 2 GB – File recovery:  Recuva

Mikee: H1N1 Information

Dave: Get Drop Box Easy way to manage files across various computers, File sharing with yourself and family, Files are accessible at anytime, Use across Macs and PCs, Follow on Twitter and Facebook, New iPhone app

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