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     Print Edition: November 2012

CHIP THAT 'FUNS' A CAR
If they could, users would surely convert their cars into big phones and tablets, so addicted are they to the infotaintment provided by their mobile devices. Recognising this, Volkswagen has latched on to NVIDIA Tegra, the super chip on many smart devices, to power its new infotainment system on its Golf. The system will offer real-time Google navigation and rich interactive graphics, in addition to a telephone module, tuner modules, a six-channel high-performance amplifier, and a DVD drive.

MY LOVE MY DEVICE
You love your gadget, you can let your heart protect it. Foteini Agratioti, an engineer at the University of Toronto, Canada, has developed technology that uses heart beats to unlock smartphones, tablets, gaming consoles and other devices. "ECG biometrics identifies people by their cardiac rhythm," says Agrafioti, who has now started a company, Bionym, to market the technology.

CLEARER THAN CLEAR
Those who thought hi-definition was the ultimate in visual acuity gaped at 4K, a tech that offered four times the pictorial density of HD. If 4K is unbelievable, Japanese broadcaster NHK has now developed a data-rich tech that allows over 16 times the pixel count of Full HD (33 million pixels vs HD's 2 mil). But with trials scheduled only for 2020, don't throw away your HD set-top boxes just yet.

SWITCH ON A PHONE
LIFX is a bulb being developed in Australia that will be switched on by your Android or Apple phone. It is a Wi-Fi connected LED bulb that you remotely control or whose colour you can change. It can also notify you when a new Twitter message arrives. It will cost around $60.

60: Years since the birth of the barcode. however, while the first barcode was filed in the us on october 7, 1952, it was only in 1974 that a packet of chewing gum became the first sale to be scanned. a laser reader did not exist before that.

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