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Ford opening Silicon Valley research lab in 2012

Ford silicon valley

Living in the northwest, the weather can make of break your day. From sun, to snow, to rain, it can all be seen in one day, depending on the season. So as any Northwesty, I'm constantly checking my iPhone for updated weather conditions. But alas, no two weather apps, let alone forecasters, can agree on Seattle weather.

Ford has announced that they will be neighboring next to Intel, Google, and other Silicon Valley giants. Other automotive giants such as Volkswagen, Mercedes-Benz, and BMW have already moved into the Valley, and Ford will be moving its Research and Innovations (R&I) Unit into the neighborhood. The question you might be asking is, "what does Ford and Northwest weather have to do with each other?" The answer is real-time data. Ford is aiming to utilize the sensors in its vehicles to transfer data to the client services we use.

Put it this way, when you're driving down the highway and it begins to rain, the sensors on the wipers transmit a signal to a client service; say a weather app you might use on your phone. The more vehicles equipped with this technology, the more accurate our weather forecasting becomes. Furthermore, I can see this technology also providing real-time traffic congestion info. In conjunction with a solid GPS, your commuting time could be reduced.

Read More | Autoblog

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Bleeding Edge TV 262: HP Garage tour video

The HP Garage is recognized as the birthplace of Silicon Valley. We got the rare opportunity to get inside of the Garage (thanks to our sponsor HP) to bring you a look at an important piece of tech history. Be sure to also check out our HP Garage photo tour. We also have a bunch of images in our HP Garage photo gallery.

We give you a peek at the rich history behind HP - if you are into tech, this is definitely one to watch. We get the story of how two men took HP from your average startup, to what we see today.

A big thank you goes out to HP and Verizon FiOS for sponsoring this episode.


HP Garage photo tour

Another view of HP Garage entrance

We had the honor of getting invited to tour the Garage, considered almost universally to be the “birthplace of Silicon Valley.” In a nutshell, the HP Garage is a literal 12’ x 18’ wooden garage. This is where Dave Packard and Bill Hewlett founded the Hewlett-Packard company, way back when in 1939. Yes, even HP was a struggling, bootstrapped startup.

The Gear Live crew, along with Xavier from Notebooks.com, Michael from Hardware Geeks, and Rob from Windows Now, got a fantastic history lesson from HP Archivist Anna Mancini. If you are a geek like we are, you would have had a blast hearing all the interesting tidbits that Anna shared. For example, did you know that the company name was decided by the flip of a coin? Had the coin landed different, the company would have instead been named Packard-Hewlett, and would no doubt have been nowhere near successful. That’s how those things work, right?

Another interesting fact is that the bread and butter of HP was their line of audio oscillators, which they actually made by hand. They even baked the metal slabs in their kitchen oven. Way to save cash, eh? After Disney ordered eight of them to use in conjunction with the release of Fantasia, HP was well on its way to the big time.

We’ve put together an HP Garage tour photo gallery, featuring a good 26 images that Xavier Lanier graciously hooked us up with. Check it out for a fantastic glimpse into the history of consumer electronics.

Read More | HP Garage photo tour

Gallery: HP Garage photo tour


Writers Continue Without Studios

And the beat goes on. As studios continue to lose millions to make a point, many of the writers on strike have taken it out online as we reported earlier. At the very least it can be a sort of therapy. Director/Writer George Hickenlooper has developed a series of short films to show his support. Dubbed “Speechless,” it seems proof that if a writer has to write, they can always skip the middleman. In all, 7 Silcon Valley investors and Hollywood folks have formed companies to create work without studio assistance.

 

Read More | stuff

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