Bytemarks Cafe – Episode 13 – Oct. 29, 2008

This week, after the headlines, we’re joined in the studio by mobile technology guru Todd Ogasawara of to talk about the new Google-powered mobile phone called the G-1. Then, we talk to Joel Matsunaga from Hawaii BioEnergy about converting crops to fuel.

But first the headlines…

  • Deep inside Diamond Head Crater, in a World War I bunker, is the home of the State’s emergency operations center. This facility is in need of a major face lift and the state wants to build a new $70 million emergency operations center on Diamond Head Road.
  • Molokai High School ushered in a new era of state-of-the-art science instruction yesterday, with the blessing of a mobile science lab.  The mobile lab will allow students at both Molokai High School and Molokai Intermediate School to have access to equipment, after a recent splitting of the once unified campus left the high school without laboratory access. The new mobile lab will allow a full range of chemistry, physics, and biology experiments to be performed in the high school’s current classroom, without requiring students to walk to and from the middle school campus.
  • Bill Spencer, CEO of Hawaii Oceanic Technologies, spent last week at the Dow Jones Alternative Energiy Innovation conference talking about Oceansphere, a huge aluminum and Kevlar sphere, measuring 162 feet in diameter. This new innovation could pave the way for a new generation of fish farms.
  • One of Hawaii’s newest charter schools is trying to make the most of the many resources now available online for virtual classrooms, from lesson plans to rewards for student performance.  Hawaii Technology Academy in Waipahu advocates “blended” instruction, or a hybrid model that includes face-to-face classroom instruction, activities and study time away from campus, and distance learning via videoconferences, online courses, e-mail and telephone.

Download the MP3 File

Bytemarks Cafe – Episode 12 – Oct. 22, 2008

This week Lorelle VanFossen will join us in the studio to tell us about her work with Word Press and a couple of upcoming events. And later, we’ll talk to Hunter Downs and Erin Nishimura from local tech company Archinoetics. We’ll talk about brain painting, brain to computer interfaces, and Project Niu.

The headlines:

  • Honeybee populations around the world have seen troubling decreases around the world, with scientists studying what they’re calling Colony Collapse Disorder, or CCD. Now, a Hawaii company says its using nanotechnology to fight CCD, developing a protective hive coating that blocks potentially harmful particles from getting in, but still allows air to flow through.
  • Keeping kids safe online is a hot topic once again, with new laws at the federal level taking different approaches to protecting children on the Internet. Last week, President Bush signed the KIDS Act of 2008 — KIDS being an acronym for “Keeping the Internet Devoid of Sexual Predators.” Among other things, the KIDS Act requires convicted sex offenders provide their email and instant messaging addresses as part of their registration with the National Sex Offender Registry.
  • North Hawaii Community Hospital (NHCH), a private community hospital in Waimea on the Big Island of Hawaii, has partnered with Phoenix Health Systems, a national healthcare information technology management, and consulting company, to provide IT related management and infrastructure services.
  • Hawaii will be one of ten states included in the Real World Design Challenge, a new annual competition for high school students organized by the U.S. Department of Energy.  The Design Challenge is described as one way to ensure America’s economic competitiveness and national security, inspiring today’s students to become tomorrow’s engineers. The theme for the first challenge is “Aviation and Fuel Consumption,” and will require students to redesign an existing aircraft to improve its fuel efficiency without drastically reducing its performance.

Download the MP3 File

Bytemarks Cafe – Episode 11 – Oct. 15, 2008

This week, Eugene Villaluz will join us in the studio to tell us about HMAUS Mactoberfest and later, we’ll talk to Shari Tamashiro, Cybrarian from Kapiolani Community College about Digital Storytelling, the Hawaii Nisei Story and Hawaii Memories.

It’s day 8 (don’t ask me why I say day 5 on the recording) of Celebration 2008 so if you enjoy Bytemarks Cafe and want to support tech reporting in Hawaii, please do consider making a donation online or by calling (808) 941-3689. Be sure to mention Bytemarks Cafe!

  • Mauna Kea will soon be the center of attention for NASA scientists when they test a robot designed for lunar prospecting. From  November 1st  through the 13th, the Big Island volcano will stand in for the moon so that the robot — called Scarab — can simulate a lunar mission to extract water, hydrogen, oxygen and other compounds that could potentially be mined for use by future lunar explorers.
  • Speaking of Mauna Kea, spectacular new photos of the planet Uranus taken from the Keck II Observatory were unveiled Monday at a meeting of the American Astronomical Society’s Division for Planetary Sciences. Since Uranus takes 84 years to orbit the sun, suffice it to say space observation has evolved considerably since the last time astronomers got a good look at the icy blue planet.
  • With fluctuating oil prices and a challenging economy, both public and private sector organizations are turning to alternative work environments such as telecommuting, flex time, work at home and four-day workweeks to ease the pain to their bottom lines and their employees’ wallets. That includes the Hawaii state government, which is piloting a four-day work week. Information Technology, or IT, is key to making it work.

Download MP3 File

Bytemarks Cafe – Episode 10 – Oct. 8, 2008

This week, we speak with Anderson Le of the Hawaii International Film Festival about “Metal Samurai.” Then, we’re joined in the studio by Lisa Gibson and Mike Hamnett to discuss the state of the tech industry in Hawaii, as profiled in a comprehensive report just released by the Hawaii Science and Technology Council.

It’s pledge week at Hawaii Public Radio, so if you enjoy Bytemarks Cafe and want to support tech reporting in Hawaii, please do consider making a donation online or by calling (808) 941-3689. Be sure to mention Bytemarks Cafe!

  • The Senate last month passed SB 1492 which would require the U.S. Federal Communications Commission to issue an annual report on the availability of broadband access across the U.S., instead of the current law, which requires the FCC to issue a report “regularly.”
  • Hawaii’s emerging life-sciences industry received its first comprehensive check-up in a report released last week by the Hawaii Science & Technology Institute. The institute surveyed 10 tech-based sectors in the life sciences arena, finding them anchored in agriculture as well as in traditional drug discovery.
  • Aqua Engineers, a Kauai company located in Kalaheo, has been awarded a $229-million contract to take over the government-owned sewer systems on U.S. Army bases on Oahu and run them for the next 50 years. 
  • A five-person startup here in Honolulu is looking to harness natural wind power to generate electricity — but not in the way you might expect. Humdinger Wind Energy is the brainchild of Shawn Frayne, who envisioned a new way to get power from wind after studying the famous collapse of the Tacoma Narrows Bridge in 1940.

Download MP3 File

Bytemarks Cafe – Episode 9 – Oct. 1, 2008

This week, after the news, we’re joined in the studio by Mark Hakoda, who tells us about a special event called “Pecha Kucha 3.0.” Then, we talk with Larry Wiss and Scott Belford about eWaste. Old computers and electronic gear are piling up. What do you do with all this junk?

  • Representatives from Hoana Medical, a local biomedical company, will be presenting findings from a study of nurses who have worked with their “LifeBed” at a Nashville conference later this month.
  • U.S. Coast Guard and Hawaii state officials have just launched “Anuenue,” a new inter-island digital microwave network. The network will support the day-to-day and emergency data transport needs of federal and state government agencies and improves emergency communications capabilities in Hawaii.
  • Research conducted here in Hawaii almost 10 years ago is proving to be timeless. Heterocyclic aromatic amines (HAAs), a group of chemicals formed during high-temperature cooking of meat and fish, are potent mutagens and are suspected to play a role in colorectal cancer.
  • Space Exploration Technologies, a US space company founded by an Internet multi-millionaire, has become the first private venture to successfully blast a rocket into Earth’s orbit. Falcon 1, a liquid fuel rocket built by SpaceX, took off from Kwajalein Atoll on Sunday and entered orbit carrying a dummy payload.
  • Apple opened its third Hawaii store in Honolulu this past weekend, building its largest local retail location yet in the heart of Waikiki. The store, in the Royal Hawaiian Center on Kalakaua Avenue, is situated between Apple’s Ala Moana and Kahala Mall locations.

We close with our song pick of the week, Trash 80 and a song called “Say Goodbye.”

Download MP3 File