The UpStream

Urine + Forward Osmosis - Electricity = NASA Experiment

posted Sunday Jul 10, 2011 by Jon Wurm

Urine + Forward Osmosis - Electricity = NASA Experiment

NASA has a tradition of conducting fun experiments in space and given that the space shuttle Atlantis is on its last trip in the final frontier, I thought it would be fitting to discuss one of the last fun experiments we may see for quite a while.

Those of you who have been paying attention to these kinds of experiments in the past might remember something really similar. It works like this, first someone urinates or pours undrinkable water in the "forward osmosis bag" where it filters through a semi-permeable membrane which excludes certain bacteria and particles. Next, the filtered water saturates with sugars to form what they call a "sports drink." The entire process takes about 4-6 hours and was designed by a company in Oregon for hikers, Bear Grylls and other people who find themselves in positions where drinking urine out of a bag is a required option for survival. The big difference between the forward osmosis bag and its predecessors is that it requires no outside power source like electricity; something that is cherished outside city limits and in space.

Take a bathroom break and then hit the break to watch an incredibly detailed demonstration.

Apple Enlists Secret Service to Investigate Webcam Scheme

posted Sunday Jul 10, 2011 by Nicholas DiMeo

Apple Enlists Secret Service to Investigate Webcam Scheme

I think the idea of capturing images of people staring blankly at computers while trying to decide if they want to purchase one is pretty awesome. It's even better if they are the stares of the latte-sipping Mac buyers. This is such a good (in this instance, good can also be synonymous with strange or demented) idea that Kyle McDonald seems to agree. He started a project called People Staring At Computers, a Tumblr site that posted images of people...staring at computers.

Apple isn't thrilled about this idea and the Secret Service are involved. How? We discuss after the break.

Google Bids with Constantly Crazy Math Skills

posted Sunday Jul 10, 2011 by Nicholas DiMeo

Google Bids with Constantly Crazy Math Skills

For years and years, Google has been slowly evolving into an Internet monster that looks pretty on the outside but will be quick to swallow you whole without thought or remorse, kind of like a Venus flytrap. For the past two weeks, however, Google seems to have turned a new leaf and have been kind-hearted. They have even been somewhat humorous. Who knew that Google had a sense of humor hiding behind those grimacing red and yellow O's?

Last week, we covered Google's support of equality and LGBT causes. This week, Larry Page and company showed a little bit of their funny bone at the auction for Nortel Networks' wireless patents.

What happened and why is it funny? We talk about it after the break.

In MW3 Color Blind Gamers Can See the Light...and Team Members

posted Sunday Jul 10, 2011 by Jon Wurm

In MW3 Color Blind Gamers Can See the Light...and Team Members

It has come to my attention that the VP/COO of Sledgehammer Games understands the frustration that color blind gamers endure as well as those that are forced to play with them, especially in games like Modern Warfare 3. We don't mean to be team killers; it's just sometimes hard to tell who's who. Better safe than sorry right?

Hit the break to read the refreshingly pro-color blind forum post from Nick to Michael Condrey, the VP/COO of Sledgehammer Games on July 7th 2011.

Apple Quickly Becoming 'The Man'

posted Sunday Jul 10, 2011 by Scott Ertz

Apple Quickly Becoming 'The Man'

You have to admire the nerve of a company like Apple who started their life off with a commercial literally breaking people free from the man's hold on them with a sledgehammer going after companies for using a pretty common phrase that has been around since before Apple got into the mobile space. That, however, is exactly what has happened once again, this time between Apple and GetJar, a mobile phone application marketplace.

They refer to their marketplace as an app store, because it is, and apparently have since around 2005 when the company first launched this app store to the world (most likely for the Windows Mobile platform). Well, like Amazon before them, Apple claims this infringes on a trademark they registered in 2008 (3 years after GetJar started using the term).

How will this turn out? Hit the break for some idea.

Two Batmen are Better Than One

posted Sunday Jul 10, 2011 by Scott Ertz

Two Batmen are Better Than One

The Batman franchise has been in live production for a long time. It starts with Adam West in the original 60s television series, then moves to the big screen with Michael Keaton, Val Kilmer and George Clooney. Most recently, the darker version of The Dark Knight has been played by Christian Bale. The next entry in the series, The Dark Knight Rises may have a bit of surprise in store.

According to reports, Adam West has been seen on the set for the next film and it is suggested that he will be playing a role in the new film. Most likely a cameo of sorts. In fact, Floss magazine's Twitter feed published,

Hollywood big wigs confirmed actor Adam West (Batman on the TV series) will make a cameo on The Dark Knight Rises set to open July 20, 2012

My hopes for the cameo are that Batman somehow interacts with Quahog, RI and it is Mayor Adam West we will be seeing. Probably not, though.

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