IT Business Elsewhere is a collection of unusual technology stories from around the world.
Maybe you thought you knew the seven
deadly sins. But do you know the seven deadly sins of e-mail? E-mailing too much or too little are two of them.
What’s harder, quitting the heroin habit or being without Internet access for two weeks? That’s what Yahoo! wanted to know, so it separated willing participants from their Internet access just to see how long it took before they started hallucinating — at least virtually.
Robots can be so touchy
If you needed proof the robots are about to take over the world, here it is. Japanese researchers are developing rugs and robots that feature receptors making them sensitive to pressure, like skin.
My PC’s all ears
IBM is developing call centre technology intended to speed up the time it takes for reps to retrieve the information you want. It does it by eavesdropping on the conversation and listening for key words, so it’s best not to swear at the CSR for it to be most effective.
The Popeye plan
Even if you’ve always hated spinach, the fact remains it’s good for you. And, apparently, for technology. MIT researchers are looking at ways to use it to power cell phones and laptops.
The Brits have come up with another, extremely useful way to put their mobile phones to work — by getting them to SMS beer vouchers.