Sky Fire

Image: Sky Fire, this photo is available to licence on EyeEm.


Friday, March 1, 2019

In This Edition:
100 years of Sci-fi, hidden data in sound, advice on change, heat camo, quick draw, male biases in design and animation eyes!

Last week I was in Bangor in North Wales. I did some limited exploring of the Isle of Anglesey for somewhere to fly the drone and found the Cefni Reservoir and dam. There's a nice forest walk down to the middle of the reservoir where you come out at the small dam and you can walk across the top of it, as pictured from above in this photo I took with the drone.

100 Years of Sci-Fi Visualised

Image: Wired, Eric Berlow

Data Scientist Eric Berlow has analysed 100 years of Science Fiction output and analysed and categories the data. Theme trends show that exploration has seen a boom in recent years, but aliens are also on a comeback. The data also shows that the topic of AI has been re-introduced in the last 30 years.


Real Time Hidden Acoustic Signals

Image: Man Zhou, Qian Wang, Kui Ren, Dimitrios Koutsonikolas, Lu Su, Yanjiao Chen

Researchers in China and the U.S. have created a system for receiving hidden data in audio signals using smartphone microphones. The Dolphin system uses commercial off the shelf (COTS) smartphones to detect, error correct and decode hidden data transmitted in audio within an 8 meter distance and up to an angle of 90 degrees. Transmission of sport stats data via stadium speakers without the need for internet connectivity is one possible implementation of this mass transmission system.


Walk In Their Shoes


One of Seth Godin's blog posts this week really hit home with me. Seth talks about how the emotion filled arguments on important issues between two sides rarely result in anything constructive. Seeing things from other peoples point of view is how you can work to change the narrative, the position or the issue. This works at all levels, from people to nations. This is how the momentous Good Friday Agreement was ratified by all sides. This is not how Brexit has been executed.


Heat Camouflage

Image: American Chemical Society

Research published by The American Chemical Society shows that aerogel film coated with polyethylene glycol and a waterproof layer acts as an effective invisibility cloak to infrared detectors. The relatively inexpensive coated material effectively absorbs heat but releases it slowly over time, making it less visible.



Image: With Google

Pit your drawing skills against a neural network trying to recognise what you are drawing. Hilarity ensues with the sound on! :-)


One Size Doesn't Fit All

Image: The Guardian, Kellie French

This is a fascinating article that every man should read. An edited extract of Caroline Criado-Perez's book Invisible Women: Exposing Data Bias in a World Designed for Men was published in The Guardian this week. Example after example of everyday things that we all take for granted which are inherently biased towards men in their design shocked me. The paper size A1 is designed to fit under the average arm when being carried, the average man's arm that is. Police stab vests and body armour are designed to protect you, as long as you are a man. Protective face and eye wear are designed to fit over the average face, as long as that face is male. A brick is designed to fit in your hand, a bag of cement designed to be lifted comfortably, but not if you are a woman.

That car you drive with the great safety rating, well it probably got that rating using only male crash test dummies and small male dummies as a proxy for women. And if you are pregnant, well bizarrely that edge case doesn't really warrant proper testing and besides, a seatbelt often doesn't fit on a pregnant woman anyway, madness! The article also does an eye opening job at describing how the provision of toilets in buildings is astoundingly unequal when divided 50/50, based on the usage needs of users. Again, the article is well worth the read, if only to recognise some inherent biases.


Funny Thing of The Week: Animation Eyes

Image: Twitter, Drew Gibson

Kudos Drew Gibson.


About Found This Week

Found This Week is a curated blog of interesting posts, articles, links and stories in the world of technology, science and life in general.
Each edition is curated by Daryl Feehely every Friday and highlights cool stuff found each week.
The first 104 editions were published on Medium before this site was created, check out the archive here.

Daryl Feehely

I’m a web consultant, contract web developer, technical project manager & photographer originally from Cork, now based in London. I offer my clients strategy, planning & technical delivery services, remotely & in person. I also offer freelance CTO services to companies in need of technical bootstrapping or reinvention. If you think I can help you in your business, check out my details on

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