The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Crystal Ball

Software beings

Five European universities are collaborating on the New Ties project, where they plan to create millions of “software beings” (virtual humans living in computers) with the goal of studying how they interact and evolve. The software beings don’t have names, but they do have distinct characteristics, including gender, life expectancy, size and metabolism. Their traits will be passed on as they reproduce, but they'll also be able to learn and gain new characteristics. Two thousand artificial beings have been created so far, but the goal is to create a grid or cluster of computers to host potentially millions of them

Phone piano

Samsung says it can turn a cellphone into a full-size piano or a drum kit. The South Korean company plans to use a small video projector, embedded in the phone, to project an image of a keyboard or drum skins onto a plain, flat surface. As the owner presses the keys or hits the drums, a camera in the phone would detect the motion and convert it into the appropriate musical sound. The phone could either play the sound out loud or make a recording and the phone’s camera could even make a video of the performance.

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