The Northern Spy: don your computers
TweetFollow Us on Twitter

The Northern Spy: don your computers

By Rick Sutcliffe

Wearable computing technology has been the "latest" buzz longer than most ideas (indeed longer than some ideas endure from conception to death), generating endless speculation about who will bring out what product in the genre and when.

As often the case, the Spy has the inside track. Mind, he does not deal in speculation or rumour. However, he does keep his ear to the ground, his eye on the horizon, his nose to the grindstone, his hand in the industry, and his mind on the probabilities, which for simultaneity may be a literal anatomical improbability and for metaphorical use too much a melange merely to be termed "mixed."

One new technology recently in the news was a means to read the brain's diversified visual storage and reconstruct memories of faces--touted as useful in identifying perpetrators of crimes. Sounds quite interesting. Add this to a new manufacturing technique from I.R.C. for integrated circuits that strings out the components as hair-thin threads emanating from a flexible substrate rather than on fixed two-dimensional silicon surfaces, and to the more-than-substantial stories of research into wearables at Apple, and it is not difficult to forecast that the Spy's long-predicted (since before 1990) PIEA (Personal Intelligence Enhancement Appliance) may soon be a reality.

For those new to the Spy's work, and in particular those who haven't read his "Fourth Civilization" text, or his novels in which the PIEA plays a prominent role, the basic premise was that of the Metalibrary (universal hyperlinked storage of everything informational, with devices called MTs (Metalibrary Terminals) that served for as information access, communication, computation, and reader combined as one.

The PIEA is the portable version of an MT, with glasses or an implanted eye-screen for video, ear buds or implants for audio, a throat microphone, a belt-slung tablet that a user grips with one or both hands to code text and data for addresses, queries, and texted responses, and incorporating a diamond-coated screen for times when the eye-wear was deemed inadequate. Throw in an optional neural interface and you have the ultimate in what older SF referred to as the "pocket brain"--a true intelligence enhancement appliance to which can be offloaded computational tasks better done in hardware. Isn't it interesting the extent to which his vision has been achieved by the busy boys and girls beavering away in the basement labs of academia and corporatia over these last twenty-five years?

How does the rest of it come together in the real world as an iPIEA? Not as a mere iWatch--that would be selling the vision far short of the probabilities, let alone the possibilities that Cupertino can dream of. No, the next announced product cooked up by iTim will be the ultimate wearable, consisting of twelve components, though with some twinning, only 10 or 11 discretely different ones:

° A a pocket or pouch unit containing the basic computer. Various trade names have been bruited about, including iPhone Pro, and/or iPadTouch+, but the Spy's dark horse favourite is iCon (iconnect). After all, the Spy, being not bound in this case by a non-disclosure agreement, can freely admit to the rumour that Apple has not as yet signed a licensing agreement with Arjay Enterprises for the rights to use the designation iPIEA--for free. Neither will he admit even to negotiations.

° One or two wrist bracelets containing a wireless connection to the above for interface purposes. Think iWatch-enhanced, as these would be flexible metal with a polished surface acting as a touch screen. Each bracelet comes in five or 7.5 centimetre widths and has an effective screen height of up to fifteen centimetres, depending on the circumference of the user's wrist. Rotating the bracelet on the wrist provides a brand new gesture, as does moving one's entire arm about in one of several manners. (e.g. hand in the air to ask a question of Siri, hand out sideways to generate a communications handshaking protocol, hand behind the back to request that a web site respect privacy, and so on);

° The aforementioned eyeglasses (eye implants are a later iteration), but done in Ruby "glass", not sapphire. Interviewed earlier this week by the Spy, iTim commented "I've always looked at the world through rose-coloured glasses, so why change now?" A thinly deposited diamond surface as in the Spy's first novel, "The Peace" is a bit of a technological stretch as yet;

° The likewise aforementioned throat mike and ear buds, connected wirelessly to the main machine via a very personal LAN;

° Apple will release the package with limited, pre-packaged, and non-upgradable storage in 16, 32, and 64G models only, in a variety of screen sizes from zero to 22cm, with a price point comparable to current iPhones and iPads, and in 4G and Wi-Fi-only models. The base unit will be available separately for a discount, and all current iPhone, iPad, and iPodTouch devices will be dropped from the lineup.

As AppleTV will be incorporated, that separate box may be dropped sooner rather than later. Personal proximity to one's home theatre will be sufficient to communicate input and output over with it.

The Spy has learned that in addition to the base and enhanced configurations detailed above, two significant upgrades will be available--in case the reader's appetite for this kind of thing is insufficiently whetstoned thus far.

First, purchasers will not be limited to the paltry memory Apple provides, as I.R.C. plans to release a wearable device with up to thousands of memory threads attached that can communicate wirelessly to the main box and serve as auxiliary memory--scaleable to multiple terabytes. These threads may be woven into shirt, socks, or slacks and fitted with a USB port so the whole thing can alternately be plugged into a computer.

This ultimate portable storage will be used for the owner's personal data store/cache, and to protect it from would-be thieves, it will be password protected to the DNA in the user's sweat. However, apparently some very high-forehead early alpha-testers requested another alternative, so I.R. has promised to release the wearable solid state storage also as a dyed-to-order hairpiece--guaranteed to be a real head-turner.

Second, by purchasing four slave units to the wrist bracelet--a second bracelet without a screen (software switch for lefties to reverse orientation) two likewise for the ankles, and a belt buckle of the same material, the wearer will be able, in combination with the ear buds, to listen to music in seven channel surround sound.

Bass sound? Mens' and women's underwear from Joe Boxer and Stanfield in various sizes, with not one, but two wireless bottom-mounted sub-woofers. Skinnier people may need padded bits. Getting the subwoofers wet voids the warrantee. And what is I.R.C? The Irreproducible Results Corporation. Have a good April first.

--The Northern Spy

Opinions expressed here are entirely the author's own, and no endorsement is implied by any community or organization to which he may be attached. Rick Sutcliffe, (a.k.a. The Northern Spy) is professor of Computing Science and Mathematics at Canada's Trinity Western University. He has been involved as a member or consultant with the boards of several community and organizations, and participated in developing industry standards at the national and international level. He is a co-author of the Modula-2 programming language R10 dialect. He is a long time technology author and has written two textbooks and nine novels, one named best ePublished SF novel for 2003. His columns have appeared in numerous magazines and newspapers (paper and online), and he's a regular speaker at churches, schools, academic meetings, and conferences. He and his wife Joyce have lived in the Aldergrove/Bradner area of BC since 1972.

Want to discuss this and other Northern Spy columns? Surf on over to ArjayBB.com. Participate and you could win free web hosting from the WebNameHost.net subsidiary of Arjay Web Services. Rick Sutcliffe's fiction can be purchased in various eBook formats from Fictionwise, and in dead tree form from Amazon's Booksurge.

URLs for Rick Sutcliffe's Arjay Enterprises:

The Northern Spy Home Page: http://www.TheNorthernSpy.com
opundo : http://opundo.com
Sheaves Christian Resources : http://sheaves.org
WebNameHost : http://www.WebNameHost.net
WebNameSource : http://www.WebNameSource.net
nameman : http://nameman.net

General URLs for Rick Sutcliffe's Books:
Author Site: http://www.arjay.ca
Publisher's Site: http://www.writers-exchange.com/Richard-Sutcliffe.html
The Fourth Civilization--Ethics, Society, and Technology (4th 2003 ed.): http://www.arjay.bc.ca/EthTech/Text/index.html

 
AAPL
$118.68
Apple Inc.
+1.08
MSFT
$47.91
Microsoft Corpora
+0.44
GOOG
$538.63
Google Inc.
-2.45

MacTech Search:
Community Search:

Software Updates via MacUpdate

RapidWeaver 6.0.3 - Create template-base...
RapidWeaver is a next-generation Web design application to help you easily create professional-looking Web sites in minutes. No knowledge of complex code is required, RapidWeaver will take care of... Read more
iPhoto Library Manager 4.1.10 - Manage m...
iPhoto Library Manager lets you organize your photos into multiple iPhoto libraries. Separate your high school and college photos from your latest summer vacation pictures. Or keep some photo... Read more
iExplorer 3.5.1.9 - View and transfer al...
iExplorer is an iPhone browser for Mac lets you view the files on your iOS device. By using a drag and drop interface, you can quickly copy files and folders between your Mac and your iPhone or... Read more
MacUpdate Desktop 6.0.3 - Discover and i...
MacUpdate Desktop 6 brings seamless 1-click installs and version updates to your Mac. With a free MacUpdate account and MacUpdate Desktop 6, Mac users can now install almost any Mac app on macupdate.... Read more
SteerMouse 4.2.2 - Powerful third-party...
SteerMouse is an advanced driver for USB and Bluetooth mice. It also supports Apple Mighty Mouse very well. SteerMouse can assign various functions to buttons that Apple's software does not allow,... Read more
iMazing 1.1 - Complete iOS device manage...
iMazing (was DiskAid) is the ultimate iOS device manager with capabilities far beyond what iTunes offers. With iMazing and your iOS device (iPhone, iPad, or iPod), you can: Copy music to and from... Read more
PopChar X 7.0 - Floating window shows av...
PopChar X helps you get the most out of your font collection. With its crystal-clear interface, PopChar X provides a frustration-free way to access any font's special characters. Expanded... Read more
Carbon Copy Cloner 4.0.3 - Easy-to-use b...
Carbon Copy Cloner backups are better than ordinary backups. Suppose the unthinkable happens while you're under deadline to finish a project: your Mac is unresponsive and all you hear is an ominous,... Read more
ForeverSave 2.1.3 - Universal auto-save...
ForeverSave auto-saves all documents you're working on while simultaneously doing backup versioning in the background. Lost data can be quickly restored at any time. Losing data, caused by... Read more
Voila 3.8.1 - Capture, annotate, organiz...
Voila is a screen-capture, recording, and annotation tool that is a full-featured replacement for Mac's screen-capture and screen-recording capabilities. It has a large and robust set of editing,... Read more

Latest Forum Discussions

See All

You Can Play the Final Chapter of Lone W...
You Can Play the Final Chapter of Lone Wolf: Dawn Over V’taag Right Now Posted by Jessica Fisher on November 26th, 2014 [ permalink ] Universal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad | Read more »
Tales from the Borderland​s Will be Comi...
Tales from the Borderland​s Will be Coming to iOS by the End of the Year Posted by Jessica Fisher on November 26th, 2014 [ permalink ] Telltale Games has announced | Read more »
Sunburn! Review
Sunburn! Review By Campbell Bird on November 26th, 2014 Our Rating: :: DON'T DIE ALONEUniversal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad Platform through the depths of space to make sure your entire crew dies together in this satisfying... | Read more »
Black Friday has Started Early – Lots an...
It’s almost turkey time! Which means lots and lots of food but also lots and lots of sales. Some sales have even started a few days early, which is why we’ve put together a list of iOS games that are currently discounted (sometimes by a lot).... | Read more »
Loose Leaf Review
Loose Leaf Review By Jennifer Allen on November 26th, 2014 Our Rating: :: SIMPLE SKETCHINGiPad Only App - Designed for the iPad Sketch out ideas with simple drawing tools, courtesy of Loose Leaf.   | Read more »
Screeny (Utilities)
Screeny 1.0 Device: iOS iPhone Category: Utilities Price: $.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: Screeny is an utility app that helps you save space consumed by screenshots. It screens your camera roll and helps you to filter and... | Read more »
Tilt to Live Bundle Set to Arrive This T...
Tilt to Live Bundle Set to Arrive This Thanksgiving Posted by Ellis Spice on November 25th, 2014 [ permalink ] One Man Left has unveiled an upcoming Tilt to Live bundle, allowing players to get the series for a di | Read more »
BattleLore: Command (Entertainment)
BattleLore: Command 1.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Entertainment Price: $9.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: ***NOTE: Compatible with iPad 2/iPad mini, iPod touch 5 and up and iPhone 4S and up – WILL NOT RUN ON EARLIER... | Read more »
Weather Or Not Review
Weather Or Not Review By Jennifer Allen on November 25th, 2014 Our Rating: :: STYLISH WEATHER REPORTINGiPhone App - Designed for the iPhone, compatible with the iPad Check the weather quickly and conveniently with Weather or Not... | Read more »
The All-New Football Manager Handheld 20...
The All-New Football Manager Handheld 2015 is Available Now Posted by Jessica Fisher on November 25th, 2014 [ permalink ] Universal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad | Read more »

Price Scanner via MacPrices.net

Early Black Friday MacBook Air sale prices, $...
 MacMall has posted early Black Friday MacBook Air sale prices. Save $101 on all models for a limited time: - 11″ 1.4GHz/128GB MacBook Air: $798 - 11″ 1.4GHz/256GB MacBook Air: $998 - 13″ 1.4GHz/... Read more
Why iPhone 6 Tablet/Laptop Cannibalization Is...
247wallst.com blogger Douglas A. McIntyre noted last week that according to research posted on the Applovin blog site the iPhone 6 is outselling the iPhone 6 Plus by a wide margin . Hardly a surprise... Read more
Worldwide Tablet Growth Expected to Slow to 7...
The global tablet market is expected to record massive deceleration in 2014 with year-over-year growth slowing to 7.2%, down from 52.5% in 2013, according to a new forecast from International Data... Read more
Touchscreen Glove Company Announces New Produ...
Surrey, United Kingdom based TouchAbility specializes in design and manufacture of a wide variety of products compatible with touchscreen devices including smartphones, tablets and computers. Their... Read more
OtterBox Alpha Glass Screen Protectors for iP...
To complement the bigger, sharper displays on the latest Apple devices, OtterBox has introduced Alpha Glass screen protectors to the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus. The fortified glass screen protectors... Read more
Early Black Friday Mac Pro sale, 6-Core 3.5GH...
 B&H Photo has the 6-Core 3.5GHz Mac Pro on sale today for $3499 including free shipping plus NY sales tax. Their price is $500 off MSRP, and it’s the lowest price available for this model from... Read more
Early Black Friday sale price: 15-inch 2.2GHz...
 B&H Photo has the 2014 15″ 2.2GHz Retina MacBook Pro on sale today for $1699.99. Shipping is free, and B&H charges NY sales tax only. Their price is $300 off MSRP, equalling Best Buy’s price... Read more
13-inch 2.5GHz MacBook Pro (refurbished) avai...
The Apple Store has Apple Certified Refurbished 13″ 2.5GHz MacBook Pros available for $170 off the cost of new models. Apple’s one-year warranty is standard, and shipping is free: - 13″ 2.5GHz... Read more
Early Black Friday iPad mini 3 sale: $75 off...
 Best Buy has iPad mini 3s on sale for $75 off MSRP on their online store for a limited time. Choose free shipping or free local store pickup (if available). Sale prices available for online orders... Read more
Early Black Friday MacBook Pro sale: 15-inch...
 Best Buy has posted early Black Friday prices on 15″ Retina MacBook Pros, with models on sale for $300 off MSRP on their online store for a limited time. Choose free local store pickup (if available... Read more

Jobs Board

*Apple* Solutions Consultant (ASC) - Apple (...
**Job Summary** The ASC is an Apple employee who serves as an Apple brand ambassador and influencer in a Reseller's store. The ASC's role is to grow Apple Read more
Senior Event Manager, *Apple* Retail Market...
…This senior level position is responsible for leading and imagining the Apple Retail Team's global event strategy. Delivering an overarching brand story; in-store, Read more
*Apple* Retail - Multiple Positions (US) - A...
Sales Specialist - Retail Customer Service and Sales Transform Apple Store visitors into loyal Apple customers. When customers enter the store, you're also the Read more
*Apple* Solutions Consultant (ASC) - Apple (...
**Job Summary** The ASC is an Apple employee who serves as an Apple brand ambassador and influencer in a Reseller's store. The ASC's role is to grow Apple Read more
*Apple* Solutions Consultant (ASC) - Apple (...
**Job Summary** The ASC is an Apple employee who serves as an Apple brand ambassador and influencer in a Reseller's store. The ASC's role is to grow Apple Read more
All contents are Copyright 1984-2011 by Xplain Corporation. All rights reserved. Theme designed by Icreon.