23/10/12

La ‘cocina inteligente’


No tendrán ustedes una máquina que les ponga la comida en la boca y que la empuje hacia la garganta?”, fue la memorable pregunta que el líder soviético Nikita Jruschov le hizo a Richard Nixon en el Debate de cocinade 1959, hoy de dudosa fama.
Mientras tales máquinas alimentadoras siguen teniendo pendiente la invasión (no digamos la conquista) de nuestros hogares, no ha cesado el empeño por conseguir hacer más inteligentes a nuestras cocinas. Las tecnologías de hoy día, sin embargo, pueden hacer mucho más. Algunas ofrecen no ya simples accesorios pasivos destinados a la experiencia culinaria, sino diminutos y sofisticados sensores que “entienden” —si esa es la palabra adecuada— lo que está pasando en nuestras cocinas e intentan pilotarnos, a nosotros sus amos, en la dirección correcta. Y si la intervención de Jruschov pretendía poner de relieve las limitaciones de los consumidores, los actuales intentos de construir una cocina inteligenteponen de relieve las de los frikis culinarios.
Un artículo publicado en la prestigiosa revista británica The New Scientist ha llamado la atención sobre varias de esas iniciativas. Nos presenta a Jinna Lei, científica informática de la Universidad de Washington que ha construido un sistema que utiliza varias cámaras de vídeo instaladas en la cocina para controlar al cocinero. Esas cámaras son realmente listas: pueden reconocer la profundidad y la forma de los objetos ante su vista y distinguir, digamos, entre manzanas y tazas. Lei está estudiando añadir también una cámara térmica especial que identificaría las manos del usuario por el calor corporal.
¿Para qué todo ese esfuerzo? Pues para que los chefs puedan ser advertidos en el caso de que se hayan desviado de la receta elegida. “Por ejemplo, si el sistema detecta que se vierte azúcar en un recipiente que contiene huevos, y la receta no requiere azúcar, el sistema podrá registrar la anomalía”, nos dice Lei entusiasmada. Lamentablemente, ese empeño por convertir a la cocina moderna en un templo del taylorismo no es algo que nos sorprenda. Los frikis, ya ven, odian cometer errores y adoran ceñirse a los algoritmos. El que la cocina prospere a base de ensayo y error, o que el desviarse de las recetas ortodoxas esté en el origen de las innovaciones culinarias se desecha como algo caprichoso e irrelevante. Para muchos de esos bienintencionados innovadores no importa el contexto de la práctica que tratan de mejorar, no mientras se pueda aumentar la eficiencia. En consecuencia, a los chefs no se les ve dotados de un virtuosismo autónomo o como a talentosos artesanos, sino como a robots esclavizados que nunca deben desafiar las órdenes de sus sistemas operativos.

Con ese fin, los investigadores japoneses han instalado cámaras y proyectores en el techo de la cocina para poder proyectar instrucciones directamente sobre el ingrediente. Así, si se va a cortar un pescado, el sistema proyectará un cuchillo virtual y marcará el punto del cuerpo del pescado al que debe ir.Otro proyecto mencionado en The New Scientist es todavía más degradante. Un grupo de investigadores informáticos de la Kyoto Sangyo University de Japón está intentando casar la lógica de la cocina con la lógica de la “realidad aumentada”, ese elegante término empleado para poblar nuestro entorno cotidiano con tecnologías inteligentes (piénsese en los códigos de Quick Response que pueden ser escaneados con un smartphone para abrir su información adicional, o en los inminentes Google Glasses, unos lentes que pueden mejorar tu campo visual con nuevas corrientes de datos).

Pero ¿qué hay exactamente de “aumentado” en esa realidad? Podría estar tecnológicamente aumentada pero también parece intelectualmente disminuida; en el mejor de los casos, nos deja con una “realidad disminuida aumentada”. Algunos frikis se niegan a reconocer que los desafíos y los obstáculos realzan más que menoscaban la condición humana. Hacer que cocinar sea más fácil no significa necesariamente aumentarla; más bien lo contrario. Someterla completamente a la lógica debilitadora de la eficiencia es privar a los humanos de la capacidad de lograr la maestría en esa actividad, es hacer imposible el progreso humano y empobrece nuestras vidas.

Además, no es tan difícil predecir adónde conduce esa lógica: una vez dentro de nuestras cocinas, esos nuevos aparatos recopiladores de datos nunca las dejarán, desarrollando nuevas y supuestamente inesperadas funciones. Primero instalaríamos cámaras en las cocinas para recibir mejores instrucciones, luego las empresas de alimentación y de electrodomésticos nos dirían que les gustaría que conserváramos las cámaras para mejorar sus productos y, finalmente, descubriríamos que todos nuestros datos culinarios residen ahora en un servidor de California, donde las compañías de seguros analizan cuánta grasa saturada consumimos a fin de ajustar nuestras primas de seguros. Cocinar inducidos por tecnología inteligente puede acabar siendo un caballo de Troya para proyectos mucho más siniestros.No se trata de hacer una defensa esnobista del elitista arte culinario. En un mundo en el que solo unos pocos escogidos pudieran dominar los secretos del oficio, esas cocinas aumentadas probablemente serían bienvenidas, aunque solo fuera por su promesa de democratizar el acceso a dicho arte. Pero no es ese el mundo en el que habitamos: Internet está abarrotado de detalladas recetas y de vídeos con instrucciones de cómo cocinar los platos más exquisitos. ¿Realmente necesitamos de un robot —y no digamos de cámaras de vigilancia sobre nuestras cabezas— para cocinar tal pavo relleno o para asar tal cordero?
Con todo esto no quiero decir que la tecnología no pueda aumentarnos el disfrute de cocinar, y no solo en términos de hacer una comida más sabrosa y más sana. La tecnología, utilizada con cierta imaginación y sin el tradicional fetichismo de los obsesos por la eficiencia y la perfección, realmente puede hacer que el proceso de cocinar sea más estimulante, abriéndose a nuevas perspectivas para la experimentación y proporcionándonos fórmulas nuevas con las que transgredir las reglas.
Compárese la empobrecedora visión culinaria expuesta en The New Scientist con algunos de los imaginativos artilugios adoptados por el movimiento de la gastronomía molecular. Desde circuladores de inmersión termal para cocinar a bajas temperaturas hasta impresoras de papel comestible, desde jeringas para inyectar extraños rellenos hasta cocinas de inducción que calientan el recipiente metálico con la emisión de ondas magnéticas, todos esos gadgets hacen que cocinar sea más difícil, más estimulante, más fascinante. Pueden inculcar a cualquier aspirante a chef una gran pasión por el arte culinario, mucha más que las cámaras de vigilancia o que los robots que expelen instrucciones.
Los pesimistas y los tecnófobos están equivocados: la humanidad y la tecnología no están en desacuerdo la una con la otra. Sin embargo, cuando el diseño y la puesta en práctica de las tecnologías descansa sobre una comprensión más bien superficial de lo que nos hace humanos, es muy natural que la tecnología tenga tan mala reputación. Pero el problema son los frikis, no sus tecnologías.
Aquí reside, quizá, la gran lección para todos esos bienintencionados innovadores que están tan deseosos de mejorar el mundo con la ayuda de la tecnología. Celebrar la innovación solo por serlo es de mal gusto. Para que la tecnología aumente de verdad la realidad, sus diseñadores e ingenieros deberían tener una mejor idea de las complejas prácticas de las que se compone esa realidad; tales prácticas tienen sus propios objetivos, ideales y valores.
Así, el fracaso y la imperfección podrían ser evitados en algunos contextos y ser apreciados en otros. Incluso la ignorancia, la ambigüedad y la incertidumbre podrían llegar a desempeñar importantes papeles. Declarar una guerra preventiva a esos valores solo porque tecnologías inteligentes y conscientes del contexto nos permitan erradicarlos parece equivocado e inmaduro. Los frikis necesitan poner coto a su entusiasmo y aprender a apreciar las innumerables paradojas e ironías de la condición humana.

21/10/12

How to be popular


What do all popular people have in common? Do they all wear the same clothes? Have the same hair? Say the same things? Of course not. There are popular people all over the world, enjoying their social status at school, work, and wherever they go. They don't all look or act like each other, but they do all share one very crucial characteristic: people skills. Maybe they were born with them, or maybe they learned them from their family; however, they got them, they have them, and maybe you feel like you don't. Here's how to develop your people skills and start being the popular kid around your school!

Steps

  1. Create an objective. It is great to have a friend. If becoming popular is your goal, you need to know how you will get to know that you are popular. Is it when all your colleagues come to know your name? Or will you consider yourself popular when passersby wave at you?



  2. 2
    Understand the methods of successful people. Once you have your objective clearly in your mind, proceed to check who is popular in that particular area and what they are doing. These people take steps that the not-so-popular guys are not taking. Example: One manager is known for his good communication with clients. How does he do that? He makes all his presentations very simple. He is ready with his suggestions and spends time understanding the client’s real needs. These are a few things that he does which most of the other managers do not do.
  3. 3
    Be Confident. Everyone has some flaws. Don't let that stop you! Even if you feel that you just aren't good, keep believing. Love yourself and believe in yourself. Don't sit in the corner. Get up, and get into the spotlight. Don't worry too much about yourself. Get some courage!


  4. 4
    Be willing to step out of your comfort zone. If you're not popular, it's because you're not comfortable doing the things that popular people tend to do--making conversationcracking jokesflirting, and in general, engaging people. You might be introspective, shy, or quiet, but in order to get what you want, you need to change how you interact with people. At first, that might feel like you're being shallow or fake, but remember that being yourself is, at its core, all ...about knowing what you truly want out of life. There's nothing wrong with wanting to be on good terms with most people (which is what popularity really is). To be popular, you're going to need to take a few chances (on a social level) that normally feel uncomfortable (perhaps terrifying) to you. So be prepared to be bold.


  5. 5
    Be friendly. Popular people are on friendly terms with pretty much everyone--not only their peers, but also the teachers, the supervisors, the grocery store clerk, the janitor, the parents, the kids, and generally anyone who's even the tiniest bit nice. (The only people they're not friends with are the ones who arepractically impossible to get along with.) They're on good enough terms that they can hold a short, friendly conversation with anyone in the room. There's no reason you can't do that, too.


    • Talk to anyone and everyone who crosses your path. Smilesay hello, and if they greet you back, ask them how they're doing. No matter where you go, make it a habit to chat with strangers and acquaintances alike, even if it's just for a few minutes.
  6. 6
    Have good style. No one wants to follow a person who has a bad fashion sense. If you can't afford brand names, shop at stores that still have cool clothes at an affordable price (e.g. charming CHARLIE, Target, Aeropostale, Abercrombie, American Eagle, etc.) If you want your own signature style, buy from all stores and mix & match. Everyone loves a person who has no fear when it comes to fashion.
    • Keep it casual. Small talk is all about sticking to "safe" topics. Stay away from anything controversial, like religion or politics. By expressing your views on a controversial topic, you're bound to be unpopular with people who disagree. Keep the topics "light".
    • Be polite. Respect people's privacy; don't pry. Learn to read body language so you can see when your questions are starting to make them feel uncomfortable. Don't invite yourself anywhere, don't brag, and don't interrupt. In other words, don't be annoying.
  7. 7
    Stop thinking about yourself. Of all the people skills that popular individuals have, the one that none of them can do without is empathy. How well do you relate to other people? If you're so caught up in how they perceive you that you don't consider how they feel, then you're being self-absorbed--not in that cocky, obnoxious sort of way, but still, your thoughts are revolving around youStop worrying so much about how you look, how you sound, how you compare, and start thinking about how other people are doing. Don't try to act interesting to get other people's attention; act interested in them. Ask them how work or school is going, how their family is doing, how that situation they mentioned a while back turned out, and so on. Then relate. Talk to them about how you or someone you know had something similar happen to them, and how they dealt with it. Find common ground.
  8. 8
    Give a helping hand. Popular people don't just know everyone--they're on good terms with everyone. They establish those terms by helping people out, and they don't do it in particularly noticeable ways (they're not the martyrs or saints of society). They do little things to establish rapport (in addition to some big things, like volunteering). They offer someone a pencil when they need it. They close the neighbor's gate when it opens after a strong wind. They hold the door open and wait for the person behind them. But most often, they listen to people when they talk, and they offer to help somehow. If you truly empathize with people, you'll want things to work out for them. If there's nothing you can do to help then, at the very least, let them know that you're hoping the best for them. Here are some phrases that you'll often hear popular people saying:


    • "Well, I hope things work out. If you need anything, just call me, OK?"
    • "Whoa, that's crazy. I can't believe he did that. Do you want me to talk to him for you?"
    • "Yeah! I definitely want to go check that out. Do you want to go there together? We can split the gas that way."
  9. 9
    Be yourself. It may sound trite, but popular people live out this popular phrase. You might think that in order to be popular, you need to be attractive and talented, but--while it's true that those qualities are more likely to make you a hit with people--there are extremely popular people who are otherwise quite average, and there are extremely good-looking and talented people who are anything BUT popular. Remember, the only thing you need in order to be popular is a good set of people skills--the remainder is all yours to mold as you see fit, regardless of what anyone else thinks.
  10. 10
    Don't try too hard. Surprisingly, many "popular" people don't put too much conscious effort into it. They simply are themselves. If you're desperate to be popular, it will show in your actions, and people will think you're a poser, or worse, a freak. It helps if you find a group of friends that shares your interests, whom you can easily be yourself around. Then as you become more and more accustomed to hanging out with people, you can branch out and start talking to different people. But don't abandon your old friends!
  11. 11
    Dress like you mean it. Being popular is being dressed like you mean it. Most popular people wear those expensive, rare clothes 'imported from Singapore', but it's easier to dress like yourself. Most people don't like people who wear flashy clothes, but they also don't like people who look like they've just finished rolling in the mud. Be yourself! Remember to dress accordingly too, being popular doesn't mean dressing yourself in a Sweater with Jeans in 0 degree weather!
  12. 12
    Know that this is something you grow into - and not over night. So you need to start with the attitude/ personality. There's no point putting your hand up in lessons, because that's nerdy- the complete opposite to cool. However, if the teacher does ask you a question, saying "No" or "I don't know" will not only make you look dumb, but it will make you look like a slacker, and someone who doesn't care about their life. Home life should be pretty simple. Avoid telling your parents to bog off, butt out, etc. It is offensive, and might cause you to get grounded. Be careful about what you do and say.
  13. 13
    Try to fix your hair. Parents may restrict this, but whatever, you're cool. Trying colourful (non-permanent) hair extensions is a risky idea, so just go for some choppy bangs, side fringe and lots of hairspray. Coon tails can be a good idea too and a cute flippy fun bun as well.


  14. 14
    Accessorize. Loads of cool accessory shops can provide colorful, costume jewelry, and they can always provide good gift ideas for your friends.
  15. 15
    Wear the shoes! Uggs (with skinny jeans) /sandals/flip-flops are what popular kids are wearing these days, if you're a girl. If you're a boy, wear Nike or any other shoe brand that looks nice!
  16. Tips

    • Look approachable. Pleasant people are a joy to be around. People who always walk around looking like their dog just died aren't. Give people a chance to warm up to you.
    • If you can't say anything nice, don't say anything at all. That might sound like something you would hear from your grandmother, but it is good advice. Even if people around you are denigrating someone, avoid being drawn into negative gossip. If pressed for an opinion just say something neutral like "Well, she's always been nice to me, so I don't know" or "Maybe he has personal issues that we don't know about--who knows?"
    • Join a sport! Usually, all the more popular girls are athletic and play sports! Cheer leading and dance are obvious ones. If you're not into those, you could try field hockey, lacrosse, swimming, track, basketball, volleyball, or soccer. Almost all sports teams have popular people on it. Again, athletic girls are usually the more popular ones.
    • Although, in some communities, you might have to be mean to the "unpopular". This is most common in middle and high schools. If you live in this community, think carefully before trying because you might permanentlylose one of your friends, even probably your best friend.
    • If you have a Facebook account, you can add your school friends if they have a Facebook account too. Always talk to them. But don't get on and start saying, "Hey I'm bored." Then they respond, "Me too." Then that would seem lame. So have something to say when you start talking to them.

Aprender Ruso!

Aunque si queremos aprender Ruso lo de irse a Rusia sea una buena opción (por ejemplo aquí:http://apms.es/R7ZSc1 ) lo mejor para empezar es hacerlo con un curso básico a distancia, baratito y... ¡Bonificado! Удачи.

 Más información gratis en --->http://apms.es/R80I8x

A distancia - Información general


  • Tipo de Curso: Curso
  • Modalidad: A Distancia
  • Fecha inicio: A distancia
  • Fecha fin: A distancia
  • Duración: 180 Horas
  • Precio: Consultar más información
Objetivos: - Ofrecer una sólida base gramatical y un vocabulario suficiente, para que el alumno pueda desenvolverse en situaciones cotidianas.
- Expresarse correctamente en forma oral y escrita.
- Acceder a un texto y saber buscar en un diccionario las palabras y/o formas gramaticales desconocidas.

Para qué te prepara: Aporta una formación básica en la lengua rusa con la que podrá enfrentarse a diferentes situaciones tanto a nivel profesional como en la vida cotidiana.

Dirigido a: Este curso está destinado a quienes deseen adquirir conocimientos básicos de lengua rusa para poder mantener una conversación simple con cualquier persona.



20/10/12

How Can I Earn Some Pocket Money Online?


Many of us have more free time than we have money, so why not turn that extra, wasted time into cash? Unfortunately, practically everyone would like to make money in their spare time, so this topic is rife with online scams. (You've seen the ads: "Make money from home right now! Click here to order..."). Still, there are a few legitimate ways you can get paid for what you know or can do with nothing but your computer or smartphone and an internet connection. Which path you choose depends on your skills, interests, and how much effort you want to put into this.

For Occasional Cash Boosts: Easy Online Tasks Everyone Can Do


How Can I Earn Some Pocket Money Online?There are several types of simple online tasks you can do—and the services that pay you to do them—to earn some pocket money. These include things like taking surveys (e.g., for Lightspeed Consumer Panel), quick odd jobs (e.g., for Amazon's Mechanical Turk), testing websites (e.g., UserTesting.com), and answering tech support answers (e.g., FixYa). 
For most of these tasks, you have to wait for the right opportunity to arise and fit specific criteria. They're not recurring jobs, so you can't really count on this as a major source of income. They could pay off big, though, if the gig is a good fit for you. For example, participating inHarvard Business School Computer Lab's Experimental Research studies or a 20|20 Panel could earn you over $100 in less than an hour. See our previous guide for more tasks like these.

Mobile Gigs and Online Rewards Programs

You can also earn some beer money with your mobile phone by doing simple gigs while you're out and about. Previously mentioned Gigwalk is one example, paying from $3 to $90 for tasks, such as mystery shopping, taking photos of parking lots, testing mobile apps, and so on. You just need an iPhone or an Android device. If you can't find any gigs on Gigwalk, there are several other options in this "mobile taskforce" marketplace, such as Field Agent or Easy Shift (both only iPhone only right now).
If you don't mind being paid in rewards like gift cards, you can try previously mentioned CheckPoints or similar Shopkick mobile rewards programs (both on iOS and Android). Bing Rewards is an easy way to get stuff like gift cards and Xbox Live credits. All you have to do is search with Bing.
This post on Reddit's beermoney subreddit offers a list of rewards programs you can join that require only about 5 to 10 minutes of your time per task. They seem to pay only about a few bucks or in rewards credits.

Microjobs

How Can I Earn Some Pocket Money Online?The "microjobs" marketplace—for short, one-off tasks—is booming now. In addition to Gigwalk and the mobile gigs above, there aremany other microjobs you can do online.Fiverr, for example, pays you $5 for doing any kind of simple online task that someone will pay for. You can list your own services or reply to service requests. I've used Fiverr to get audio files transcribed on the cheap; you could sell (or outsource) other small jobs such as proofreading a one page document, customizing a Wordpress template, or even impersonating a famous character in a custom video messageGigbucks andTaskRabbit (which includes offline jobs as well) are two alternatives where you can pick up miscellaneous jobs. These microjobs pay from $5 to about $50 and typically take less than an hour to do.

For More Recurring Part-Time Cash: Sell Your Skills or Start a Low-Maintenance Side Business

Microjob services can net you some pocket money, but they don't tend to offer regular, recurring deposits into your bank account (although some people do microjobs as their only source of income). For more regular side pay, you'll need to get more entrepreneurial.

Freelance from Home

What are your marketable skills? You can use them to take on home-based work. If you enjoy writing, for example, you can become a freelance blogger or writer; typical blogging jobs pay you to post regularly but on your own schedule. ProBlogger and Freelance Writing Jobs are great resources for writers or would-be ones.
How Can I Earn Some Pocket Money Online?Find temporary or recurring project opportunities for all sorts of online skills (programming, web design, photography, and more) on job boards like Freelance Switch or freelance marketplaces such asoDesk and Elance. With the marketplaces, you can set your own rate and reply to employers' requests for project help. The only issue with these types of marketplaces is there's a lot of competition, and you can easily be underbid way beyond what your time is worth. So be careful. But if you're just starting out, these are good places to look for contract work.

Make Money Off Your Own Website or Online Store

How Can I Earn Some Pocket Money Online?It's also possible to make money with your own blog or passive-income-producing website. JetSetCitizen highlights fourteen travel bloggers and how they generate enough income from their blogs to fund their travel. Some of these include using affiliate links/ads or offering information products for sale. You'd need a good amount of traffic before your blog lets you quit your day job, but if you can offer something no one else does in a particular niche and are willing to do some marketing, you have a better chance.
Or if you have a hobby and something worth selling, you could set up your own online store on your website or using a store-building service. If you're crafty, of course there's Etsy.
In short, there are lots of scam-free ways to make money online—whether it's a quick buck or more substantial side income. Also keep in mind that once you earn more than $400 in a year from your freelance endeavors, you'll have to report the income and pay taxes on it. But it's worth it if your time isn't otherwise being spent productively. Good luck!

6/10/12

Studying in a coffee shop?

One prediction for the future claims that we’ll trade our offices, universities and stores for coffee shops in the future, but won’t all this time in buzzing spaces disrupt the thinkers among us who chase eureka moments in quiet solitude? Not according to a new study.

There's this notion that claims that in the future not only will we trade our offices for coffee shops, but universities and retail stores will come to resemble coffee shops as well. That might alarm those who aren’t fans of a good cup of coffee, but it might also be unwelcome news to those who like to work in seclusion. Won’t all this time in buzzing public spaces disrupt the visionary thinkers among us who chase eureka moments in quiet solitude?



Not according to a new study published in the Journal of Consumer Research. To investigate the link between creativity and noise levels, researchers asked 300 participants to complete mental exercises like word association games and dreaming up as many ways as possible to use a brick while in environments that were either totally silent, moderately buzzing or straight up loud.

The results show that those who worked in moderately noisy environments with sound levels on par with your average bustling cafe (about 70 decibels) scored higher on these tests of creativity and were also rated as more innovative by other participants.

The study adds to research suggesting that small doses of distraction — including hard-to-read fonts — prompt the mind to work at a more abstract level, which is also a more creative level. (The possibility that sound energized people was considered but rejected: Participants’ heart rates did rise when they first encountered noise, but soon subsided.) The effect of noise is inverted-U-shaped, this study suggested: There’s a sweet spot between silence and din.

That’s good news if we’re soon to be doing everything from studying to buying socks in a coffee-shop-like environment.