Bytemarks Cafe – Episode 29 – March 4, 2009

First we’ll look at the latest tech news and happenings in Hawaii and beyond. Later, Natasha Chappel from the Pacific and Asian Affairs Council will tell us about “Our Energy Future”. Finally, Olin Lagon and Kylee Omo from will join us, and we’ll talk about using the web to inspire people to do good deeds.

First the News:

  • In 2005 while vacationing in Puako on the Big Island, two Silicon Valley engineers, Joe Rizzi and Roger Hine, began building a device that would allow them to listen to the calls of humpback whales. What they produced, with their two-year-old company, Liquid Robotics, is the Wave Glider, a vehicle that will not only allow them to eavesdrop on whales but could also become a powerful tool that helps scientists better understand climate change and the military to monitor the high seas.
  • The Hawaii County Police Department is deploying BlackBerry smartphones throughout its force to gather and look up real-time information from a variety of databases, and to connect directly with each other.
  • isisHawaii a Hawaii-based non-profit organization has developed a partnership with complex administrators from the Pearl City school district. isisHawaii provides resources and opportunities to students to foster interest in the exploration of science, technology, engineering and math (i.e., STEM) education.
  • The Polynesian Voyaging Society is eager to begin its 1,050-mile journey to Palmyra Atoll aboard the Hokule’a, after several days of weather delays. Though the mission is to demonstrate traditional navigational skills, the crew is not afraid to embrace new technology. They’ve set up an official Twitter account to post updates on their progress, with the ultimate hope of “Tweeting around the world” when the Hokulea begins a two-year circumnavigation of the globe in May 2012.

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Bytemarks Cafe – Episode 28 – Feb. 25, 2009

First we’ll look at the latest tech news and happenings in Hawaii and beyond. Later, Bill Spencer from the Hawaii Venture Capital Association will tell us about their monthly lunch panel. Finally, Sandee Oshiro and John Garcia from the Honolulu Advertiser web team will join us, and we’ll talk about the engine behind and what it takes to deliver today’s multimedia news content.

First the News:

  • The Blue Planet Foundation is helping energize a new generation of leaders for Hawaii’s renewable energy movement by giving three University of Hawaii students free trips to Power Shift 09, a national youth summit on renewable energy being held in Washington, D.C., Feb. 27-March 2.
  • Millions of dollars have been allocated to upgrade the nation’s tsunami warning networks following the 2004 Indian Ocean disaster. But an Associated Press report out this week says that progress has been slower than expected.
  • In a house bill moving through the legislature, the state is considering awarding up to $500,000 in tax credits each year for donations benefiting science, technology, engineering and math programs at public schools. The bill would let donors claim a credit worth half the amount they give to support STEM subjects.
  • A local Navy facility is testing a new solution to dispose of thousands of gallons of oily sludge waste. The new process is both cheaper and more environmentally friendly than the old way — shipping the waste to the Mainland.

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Bytemarks Cafe – Episode 27 – Feb. 18, 2009

After the headlines, Meleana Judd from Hawaii SEED will tell us about an upcoming event. Then, Ron Hashiro and Rich Fewell from the Emergency Amateur Radio Club will join us to talk about the current state of amateur radio technology, and the role groups like the EARC play in the event of a disaster.

First the News:

  • Researchers at the University of Hawaii, working with colleagues from Johns Hopkins and Northwestern University, have discovered new promise in an old drug remedy. The team has found that clofazimine, a synthetic compound made in the 1890s and used to combat leprosy, has promise in treating multiple sclerosis, psoriasis, and type 1 diabetes.
  • Farrington is now the first high school on Oahu to establish a Project EAST program, which is a national initiative to teach students to solve real-life problems using technology.
  • We’ve previously discussed NASA’s Lunar Rover and its test runs on the rugged terrain of Mauna Kea, where the volcanic soil is the best representation of the lunar surface. This week, Michelin announced that it will provide its “Tweel” for upcoming missions of NASA’s Lunar Rover. The “Tweel” is an non-pneumatic Tire/WhEEL combination which offers a no-maintenance, easily-retreadable tire for consumers, and the holy grail for the military – a tire that can’t be “shot out.”
  • The National Park Service is in the middle of a multimillion dollar renovation of the Arizona Memorial Visitor Center. But work is also underway to give visitors an unprecedented look at the sunken battleship itself. The Parks Service is working with the U.S. Navy and researchers at the Woods Hole Oceanic Institution to create a 3-D video tour of the U.S.S. Arizona. Top-of-the-line high-definition equipment allows them to collect both detailed videos and still images.

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Bytemarks Cafe – Episode 26 – Feb. 11, 2009

After the headlines, Sabrina Velazquez from the Academy of Arts will tell us about “Wikipedia Loves Art.” Then, Ted Liu from the Dept of Business, Economic Development and Tourism and Bill Parks from the US Department of Energy will join us to talk about Hawaii’s energy future, and the role the Clean Energy Initiative plays in shaping it.

In the News this week

  • The U.S. Department of Education has granted nearly $192,000 for a project to help native Hawaiian elders (or kupuna) to record their personal histories and have them endure in digital form.
  • After 10 years of development here in Hawaii, an Australian-based drug company says it’s confident that a dengue fever vaccine it’s developing will protect people against all four strains of the mosquito-borne disease.
  • For a large data processing company like Island Insurance Company, disaster recovery is an important business consideration. To address this need Island Insurance has selected Houston, TX INX’s Virtual Infrastructure Recovery Service (VRS) as their DR solution.
  • As commercial aquaculture grows, the need for fish food grows as well, and catching wild fish to feed to farmed fish presents obvious problems — not the least of them being the impact on the environment.

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Bytemarks Cafe – Episode 24 – Jan. 28, 2009

After the headlines, Caroline Kim from the Small Business Development Center will join us to tell us about an upcoming workshop for small businesses. Then, we’ll speak with Frank Schowengerdt, from the Pacific International Space Center for Exploration Systems, and Jim Crisafulli from the Dept of Business, Economic Development and Tourism on Hawaii’s Space Industry.

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Bytemarks Cafe – Episode 23 – Jan. 21, 2009

After the headlines, Rob Farrow from joins us to tell us about some big upgrades to the company’s “identity management” service. Then, we’ll speak with Richard Brill from Honolulu Community College and Robert Paull from UH’s College of Tropical Agriculture about Genomics and advances in plant genetic engineering.

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Bytemarks Cafe – Episode 22 – Jan. 14, 2009

After the headlines, Mike Stollar joins us to tell us about a new telehealth service called HMSA’s Online Care. Then, we talk to Susan Jackson from the Hawaii State Dept. of Health and Lou Darnell from Comtel about the 4-day work week and alternatives to working from the office. Our song pick of the week, Burning Bush with “Honest Days Work.”

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Bytemarks Cafe – Episode 21 – Jan. 7, 2009

After the headlines, we learn about “Star Parties” and sidewalk astronomy with Barry Peckham. Then, we’re joined by Sen. Carol Fukunaga and David Watumull of Cardax Pharmaceuticals to discuss Act 221 and the challenges it faces in the current legislative and economic landscape.

  • A new study of pygmy killer whales shows that those living off Hawaii tend to stay close to the islands and don’t swim out to the open ocean. There are very few of the whales, probably less than 200 individuals, in this distinct pygmy killer whale population off the islands.
  • Astrophysicists have used neutrino telescopes for decades to study neutrinos originating in the sun and elsewhere in the cosmos. Now earth scientists are taking a neutrino telescope and looking down, to illuminate the Earth’s interior by detecting “geoneutrinos.”
  • Hawaii might have a head start on the federal shortfall because of its early digital TV transition on Jan. 15. The first-in-the-nation transition date has prompted residents to order their redemption coupons early.
  • President Bush will create three new marine national monuments in the Pacific Ocean, spanning 195,280 square miles and protect some of the most ecologically rich areas of the world’s oceans.

Our song pick of the week is “These Dreams,” the opening track off the new album from Kenneth Makuakane.

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Bytemarks Cafe – Episode 20 – Dec. 17, 2008

After the headlines, Russel Cheng from Oceanit will join us to tell us about a very cool iPhone app. Then, we’ll talk to Dan Zelikman and Sid Savara about privacy and transparency in the brave new world of social media.

In the News this week:

  • Puna Geothermal Ventures is celebrating it’s 15th anniversary, and Bytemarks Cafe got at chance to talk with Mike Kaleikini, the company’s general manager, about reaching the milestone. Kaleikini said, “it was a tough start in the beginning, but we’re still here after 15 years and needed now more than ever.”
  • In the search for extraterrestrial life, some astronomers are on the hunt for “Super-Earths,” and specifically, planets in other solar systems that may have liquid oceans.
  • The Air Force’s Pacific Air Command is getting into blogging, and is going outside conventional military channels to do it. Acknowledging that their audience no longer turns to mainstream media, officials at Hickam Air Force Base recently rolled out the PACAF Pixels blog.
  • Construction began in earnest last week on a 65-foot research vessel that will help a Hawaii-based ship design company develop and test new technologies for port security, including “unmanned surface vessels” or USVs.
  • Event update: The Pacific Telecommunications Council will be holding its 31st Annual International Conference from January 18th to the 21st at the Hilton Hawaiian Village.

The song pick of the week is “I Love Nerdy Boys” by Emi Hart.

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