Tracking Santa; the Eyes Have It; Death of Voicemail?

Posted December 24th, 2014 at 2:00 pm (UTC-4)
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Today’s Tech Sightings:

It’s Christmas Eve and the Battle of NORAD vs. Google Santa Trackers Has Begun!

Santa and his reindeer are traveling somewhere around the world; and Google is racing to track his every movement ahead of Microsoft and its North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD) partner. You can find Google’s Santa Tracker here and NORAD’s Santa Tracker here.

This Brain Hat Helps the Paralyzed Make Music

Musician Eduardo Miranda’s latest invention is a brain computer music interface that lets people create music using only their eyes. Once electrodes connect the device to the back of the head, the system monitors brain activity to determine where the subject is looking and flashes snippets of music on screen that can be selected by merely staring at them.

Diabetes Patients Are Hacking Their Way Toward a Bionic Pancreas

A kid using an Android app to keep track of his blood sugar levels and then tweeting the result has attracted thousands of interested parents and opened the door for an automatic bionic pancreas that measures blood sugar levels and doles out an appropriate insulin dose in response.

Skype Group Chat Hits Word, PowerPoint Online Apps

Skype now has the ability to hold group chats in Office Inline among people collaborating on  Word and PowerPoint documents. A chat button now appears when two or more people are working on a document, allowing them to communicate with each other.

South Korea Seeks China’s Cooperation in Probe Into Cyberattack on Nuclear Operator

South Korea has asked Beijing to cooperate in a probe into a recent cyberattack against one of its nuclear power plant operators after it traced related Internet addresses to a Chinese city near North Korea. An official said the addresses are not proof that either China or North Korea were the source of the attack.

South Korea Indicts Uber CEO, Local Unit for Transport Law Breach

Ride-sharing service Uber’s troubles just keep coming. The latest comes from South Korea, where prosecutors issued an indictment against the company’s local unit and its CEO for violating laws that prohibit companies or individuals from operating transportation services without the appropriate license.

The Slow Death of Voicemail

Coca-Cola has just become one of the world’s biggest companies to shut down its voicemail system. An internal memo advised employees that the move was intended to simplify work and increase productivity. The change makes a lot of sense for the younger tech-oriented generation that  grew up texting and using mobile phones.

Aida Akl
Aida Akl is a journalist working on VOA's English Webdesk. She has written on a wide range of topics, although her more recent contributions have focused on technology. She has covered both domestic and international events since the mid-1980s as a VOA reporter and international broadcaster.

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