Invisibility Cloak: Not just for Harry Potter anymore?

Wow! Just Wow! I was browsing CNN this morning and I came across the article about how scientists are creating material that can redirect light around objects. This is pretty cool stuff. No longer is Harry Potter going to be the only one with an awesome invisibility cloak. Summer camps beware!

Beyond the normal perverted male thoughts I can image a million and one practical applications for this. Not to mention then billion and one ways to exploit it. 🙂 I think the Hollywood movie industry would be the first adapters of this technology in the public sector (CIA/NSA/DHS/etc. in government of course). You could theoretically wrap a camera or person in this gear and not have to worry about keeping them out of the shot. I wonder though if it would be less “see-through” for HD cameras due to the higher pixels resolution/counts.

I’m going to have to set a reminder for myself to pick up a copy of Nature or Science for the details of this thing. I don’t remember who said it but I’ve always agreed with the saying “Magic is just science we don’t understand yet.” This type of research and technology continue to blur the line between science people will understand and what others will call “magic.” I’m all for that. We could all use a little more magic in our lives.

Posted under Technology

This post was written by Michael Tougeron on August 11, 2008

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Aug PHP Meetup was a success!

Last Thursday’s SF PHP Meetup had a pretty good turnout; about 70 people by my count.  Joe Stump from gave his talk titled “Deploying code with PEAR” to the group.  Thanks to Ray and Roger from who contributed pizza & sodas for an opportunity to tell the developers about the job opportunities at zynga. & are both hiring (Digg and GameSpot) as well.  Mariano Peterson and I both took pictures and posted them on Flickr at and respectively.

I already have next month’s talk/speaker lined up.  Aaron Newton from (formerly CNET) will be giving us a preview of his Mootools talk titled “Mootools: An Overview” that he has planned for the upcoming AJAX Experience conference.  Aaron has a Mootools book coming out that’s available now via pre-order on Amazon.

Posted under Events, JavaScript, Technology, Web Development

This post was written by Michael Tougeron on August 10, 2008

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SF PHP Meetup July 2008 – PHP::$unicode->i18n()

Kudos to Mariano for taking the lead while I’m out on paternity leave (I’m going to write about that ones of these days) and setting up July’s PHP Meetup.  Thanks to an introduction from Terry, Mariano asked Andrei Zmievski to talk about the unicode updates to PHP 6.  Due to the 4th of July, we’ve moved the meetup from it’s normal date/time to Thursday July 10th @ 7pm.  It is still at CNET like usual (thanks to funding the meetup).

Title: PHP::$unicode->i18n()

PHP 6 brings fully functional and mature Unicode support to the Web world. This talk will cover all the layers of the PHP (bread)/Unicode (butter)/i18n (jam) sandwich. Come and find out how to work with locales, use collation to compare and sort strings, and format numbers, currencies, and dates for any country in the world. Bring your appetite because the toasty goodness is waiting.

When: Thursday, July 10th, 2008 at 7pm
Where: CNET Networks: 235 2nd St, San Francisco, CA  94518

You can RSVP on the SF PHP Meetup’s site or just show up.  I always like it when people RSVP so that I know how much food to buy.  But it isn’t a prereq or anything.

EDIT: I just saw that Terry mentioned PB&J and I like the idea.  So PB&J it is; plus the usual chips, sodas, candy, etc. of course.  🙂

Posted under Events, PHP, Technology, Web Development

This post was written by Michael Tougeron on June 29, 2008

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3D Ultrasound

Back on April 5th my wife Denise and I went to a 3D Ultrasound center to check out some pictures of the baby coming in June. I’m not a huge fan of places like this. There seem to be a lot of medical centers and procedures popping up these days. I have to wonder if they are taking advantage of the John Q Public’s health paranoia or if they provide a valuable service. Anyway, that’s off-topic…

I posted them up on Flickr so my family can see them. It is pretty amazing how detailed the photos are of the face. Of course he had to be difficult and keep his foot in his face the whole time. 😛 This one is probably my favorite.

3D Ultrasound - Justin Michael Tougeron - April 5th, 2008

I think the “Dad” hormones are kicking in. I cannot wait for the next 6 weeks to pass and for him to pop out.

Posted under Family, Technology

This post was written by Michael Tougeron on May 3, 2008