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Magic Alternative Energy Bloom Box

It's a shiny box with a whole lot of mystery that's receiving a whole lot of attention this week. The "Bloom Box" a roughly cubic structure has already been embraced by eBay, Google, Staples, FedEx, and Walmart, which extol its savings. But is the new box the solution to all of mankind energy problems or a snake oil remedy for the world's fossil fuel habit?

In an exclusive interview on the CBS television program 60 Minutes, company K.R. Sridhar, CEO of Bloom Energy, gave the public a tantalizing first peek at the secret alternative energy device.

Developing Nations Risk E-Waste Crisis

Unless proper electronic-waste recycling is established in developing countries, they will face serious environmental and public health consequences, a United Nations report says.

The urgency in addressing e-waste disposal is driven by the sharp rise in sales of electronic products expected over the next 10 years in countries like China and India, across continents such as Africa, and over large regions including Latin America, the U.N. said. Such imports are expected to add millions of tons of e-waste in regions where recycling efforts are inadequate to handle even current e-waste levels.

Windows 7 "memory hog" story

"A few days ago I wrote about the claims that Windows 7 was a memory hog, and that Windows 7 systems tended to be short on memory. The claims were made by "Craig Barth," CTO of Devil Mountain Software, a Florida-based company that has a small utility that collects Windows performance data and sends it to DMS's servers, where it is then collated and interpreted.

For its part, DMS was unimpressed with our coverage. "Company representatives" made a blog post "rebutting" my original coverage.

DVD capacity an issue for 360

Bigger titles starting to need more than 9GB

Some developers are starting to whisper about the fact that the use of DVD storage on the Xbox 360 is finally leading to capacity issues.

MIT's Flyfire Micro Helicopters

"Micro helicopters, the kind that fit in the palm of your hand (and sometimes spread holiday cheer) are huge fun -- and hugely frustrating. Have you ever tried to get one to hover in place next to another? Impossible! MIT thinks it can do that, not with just two but thousands of the little beggars all hovering in harmony as part of a project called Flyfire. By using LED-equipped drones the project pledges to build free-floating 3D displays, endowing them with enough smarts and positional awareness to organize themselves into an airborne canvas.

Artificial Retina Enables Blind to See Again

Silicon retina prostheses capable of being implanted inside the eyes to restore sight are entering the third generation with the aim of enabling reading, facial recognition and unaided mobility for previously blind patients.

The U.S. Department of Energy has awarded major responsibility for the development of a third-generation retina prosthesis to Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL, Livermore, Calif.).

Google to buy & sell energy

Last month, Google announced that it was applying to buy and sell electricity on federally-regulated wholesale energy markets via a new subsidiary called Google Energy. Well, it just got the green light from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission — giving it the same rights and abilities as any other utility company, just like PG&E. The question now becomes: how will it exercise its new power?

It still seems unlikely that Google will actually set up its own utility company. It doesn’t seem to have any interest in selling electricity to average homeowners.

New USB Drive Features Infinite Storage

The USB port is one of the most ubiquitous computing interfaces ever designed. The port in its various sizes and guises is found on all manner of computers, game consoles, TVs, cable boxes, cameras, and more. The number of uses for USB is simply staggering.

A company called Infinitec has announced a new Infinite USB Memory Device or IUM. The company describes the IUM as the next generation of USB flash drives.

Hotmail Breached; Microsoft Investigates

Microsoft said that it is investigating a security snafu at its Hotmail property that occurred earlier this week. Some Hotmail users report that, upon logging into their account, they would see the inbox that belonged to someone else.

Microsoft quickly issued a statement: "Microsoft is investigating reports of a limited number of instances in which Windows Live customers may have access to other customers' accounts when accessing their account through mobile web browser.

Jobs disses Adobe Flash as CPU hog

Apple CEO Steve Jobs has reportedly continued his campaign against Adobe's Flash video technology, this time at a meeting with The Wall Street Journal, according to a report in Valleywag.

People who were at a recent meeting Jobs had with some of the paper's executives told the Gawker-owned site that Jobs dismissed Flash as "a CPU hog," full of "security holes," and "old technology" and would therefore not be including the technology on the iPad, or presumably, the iPhone.

It's not the first time we've heard this.

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