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David Benjamin
Member Since: May 8, 2010
Blog Posts: 136
Posts: 16

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FCC’s Pai Debuts as ‘Light Touch’ Heavyweight
News & Analysis  
2/28/2017   Post a comment
The new chairman of the FCC Ajit Pai, virtually claimed the copyright on the term “light-touch regulation” here at the Mobile World Congress, guaranteeing that he will strive to roll back “net neutrality” restrictions on Internet service providers.
IoT in Industry Still 'Infant,' But a Big One
News & Analysis  
2/27/2017   Post a comment
IoT in industry poses great potential but could be stalled by interoperability issues and the "human factor," according to a panel at the Mobile World Congress.
Continental AI Effort Stresses ‘Responsibility’
News & Analysis  
1/7/2017   Post a comment
Continental has merged with a software developer, Elektrobit and partnered with Digilens, a leader in holographic projection technology, to vastly expand its market penetration in cars with different technologies, especially in the use of artificial intelligence.
Toyota Exec on Robo-Cars: ‘Not Even Close’
News & Analysis  
1/6/2017   11 comments
Although honesty in corporate presentations at the CES is typically not treated as the best policy, Gil Pratt, Toyota Research Institute CEO, bucked that trend and leveled with his audience here about the real future of autonomous cars.
Hot and ‘Connected’ at Mobile World Congress
News & Analysis  
2/26/2016   Post a comment
As we roamed the Mobile World Congress this week, we spotted a few things that the future is going to be connected, to you, your car, your bike, your house, your kids, your eyes and ears and even your teddy bear.
Consumer Key to 5G: 'Cost, Cost, Cost'
News & Analysis  
2/22/2016   4 comments
5G Panel at Mobile World Congress promised enrichment of the consumer experience but discussed the issues of connected cost of services in the 5G future.
CES: High-Tech Pix from a No-Tech Photographer
Engineer’s Bookshelf  
1/9/2016   1 comment
Subjective photo impressions of CES from a casual observer's point of view.
The Greatest Thing Since...
1/8/2016   7 comments
General Motors CEO Mary Barra touted her company's newest electric vehicle during her Consumer Electronic Show keynote Wednesday. She boasted the unprecedented virtues of the Bolt.
FCC, FTC Chiefs Pit 'Sharing' vs. Regulations
News & Analysis  
1/7/2016   1 comment
The Consumer Technology Association chairman discussed regulations of "the sharing economy" with both FCC and FTC chairmen before the packed audience at the Consumer Electronics Show.
Toyota Presses R&D, Hydrogen at CES
News & Analysis  
1/6/2016   8 comments
The fully autonomous car is a long way from reality, says Gill Pratt, CEO of Toyota Research Institute. One reason: drivers aren't ready to "trust something they don't understand."
Comment: Re: A first - David Benjamin - 10/8/2015
Autonomous Cars: 'We Will Have Accidents'
News & Analysis  
10/7/2015   12 comments
The only certainty about the interaction of people — drivers, passengers, pedestrians, bicyclists — with the autonomously driven cars of the near future is that much of the technology will be in the streets before the human/machine interface (HMI) is fully understood.
Futuremobile Takes Charge
Engineering Pop Culture!  
10/7/2015   2 comments
George walks up to his car, trying to open it. Nothing happens. The car says: “I’m sorry, Dave. I’m afraid I can’t do that.”
FCC Chief at MWC: 'No One Blocks Internet'
News & Analysis  
3/3/2015   15 comments
FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler, at the Mobile World Congress, compared the FCC's controversial Open Internet Rules to the First Amendment and said, “No one blocks the Internet.”
Telcos Demand 'Digital Neutrality'
News & Analysis  
3/2/2015   8 comments
Telco operators at Mobile World Congress called for a “level playing field” with apps/service providers such as Google, Facebook and Amazon.
Best Car Ever Made: My Car, the Mother… Board
2/12/2015   21 comments
Asking the question: 'What's the best car ever made?'
The Thing Is...
1/11/2015   5 comments
"Thing" is a word that encompasses everything, goes with anything and clarifies just about nothing.
FCC Chairman at CES Takes Net Neutrality Pledge
News & Analysis  
1/8/2015   19 comments
FCC Chairman said at CES, “We need to propose a rule that says there will be no blocking [of access], no throttling, no paid prioritization. We need a yardstick against which [ISPs’] performance should be measured.”
No Fee DIY Home Security Kit Debuts at CES
News & Analysis  
1/8/2015   2 comments
Echostar brings a DIY home-security system called Sage to CES that promises no monthly service fees.
World Cup Soccer: Designed to Be Dull
6/16/2014   98 comments
Most sports become more interesting as the skill of the players advances. The striking exception to this rule is World Cup soccer. In soccer, the higher you go, the duller it plays.
FCC chair looks to break Wi-Fi traffic jam
News & Analysis  
1/10/2013   5 comments
FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski announced a plan to free up a large chunk of airwaves for better Wi-Fi. He also touted "mobile body area" technology for medical applications.
Panasonic spotlights Newark HQ move at CES
1/9/2013   Post a comment
Panasonic executives keynoting CES were having a tough time selling their message of putting "people over products" until Newark Mayor Cory Booker showed up.
Sharp doubles down on large screen TV
News & Analysis  
1/8/2013   2 comments
Sharp Electronics said the Japanese company's future would rest squarely on TV that are bigger and broader, with higher resolution.
Lexus drives 'advanced safety' initiative
Design How-To  
1/8/2013   1 comment
Toyota’s Lexus group believes that "autopilot" is not the solution to the 32,000 road deaths (one in six caused by distracted driving) that occurred last year in the U.S.
Comment: re: Top 10 tech blunders of 2012 - 12/20/2012
Comment: re: Top 10 tech blunders of 2012 - 12/20/2012
Comment: re: Top 10 tech blunders of 2012 - 12/20/2012
Comment: re: Top 10 tech blunders of 2012 - 12/20/2012
The 'ponderous chain' that keeps jobs overseas
12/19/2012   21 comments
Resident Luddite David Benjamin ponders the parallels between the global supply chain and the Dickensian "ponderous chains" that Jacob Marley forged in life.
Future of SSL LED lighting is not dim, but it’s flickering
News & Analysis  
3/28/2012   35 comments
Michael Poplawski has led one of the government’s teams – at the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory – seeking to solve issues that currently hobble the widespread deployment of LED
CES post-mortem: Fear and loathing of the show
Social Mania  
1/24/2012   5 comments
So, it’s the first day of the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) and I’m stuck in a nerd queue long enough to wrap twice around the Death Planet in Star Wars IV:A New Hope.
FCC calls for free hand in spectrum auctions
News & Analysis  
1/12/2012   4 comments
In a CES talk, FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski prodded an ambivalent Congress to pass a law allowing incentive auctions of broadband spectrum and to act fast, without "tying the hands" of the FCC.
Scenes from the CES show floor, day one
News & Analysis  
1/11/2012   2 comments
Scenes from the show floor at the Las Vegas Convention Center on the official opening day of CES 2012.
Superbattery: The next great triumph of engineering
12/29/2011   39 comments
The next great engineering advancement in batteries is in the lab and it is tantalizingly close to solution.
‘Woz’ says schools, corporations ‘tamp down creativity’
News & Analysis  
5/3/2011   82 comments
Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak regaled a crowd at the Embedded Systems Conference with an idiosyncratic critique of U.S. education while encouraging a revival of creativity among technology companies.
Ford CEO Mulally 'electrified' at CES
News & Analysis  
1/8/2011   7 comments
Ford expects to have five different electric cars on the market by 2012. By 2015, Ford plans for its fleet to be 10-15 percent electric, compared to one percent today.
FCC chair and CEA chief agree on spectrum, but will Congress?
News & Analysis  
1/8/2011   2 comments
FCC chief Julius Genachowsky came to CES to promote a "national broadband plan," designed to free up spectrum for mobile wireless.
CEA chief sees low growth 'bright future'
News & Analysis  
1/7/2011   Post a comment
CEA President Gary Shapiro predicted a gradual recovery for his industry, but joined with other industry leaders to tout “innovation” and a lighter regulatory touch as the keys to a full “comeback” for consumer electronics and the U.S. economy.
Call any rib roast, call it by name
12/23/2010   20 comments
A new consumer electronics gadget fills the universal need for people to develop a meaningful dialog with the food they cook.
ESC keynoter Kaku beams audience back to the future
4/27/2010   2 comments
Physicist Michio Kaku, keynote speaker at the Embedded Systems Conference in San Jose, offered his audience a feast of futurism, predicting extraordinary advances in medical technology, and science-fiction turned reality in areas like teleportation, invisibility and molecule-size computers.
U.S. broadband plan needs more spectrum, says FCC chief
News & Analysis  
1/9/2010   Post a comment
In his annual "one-on-one" with the Chairman of the Federal Communications Commission, Consumer Electronics Association CEO Gary Shapiro, learned the new deadline for a U.S. plan for universal broadband, discussed the country's "spectrum shortage" and confirmed the death of the Fairness Doctrine.
CES:'Avatar' provides avatar for hopeful 3-D promoters
News & Analysis  
1/9/2010   Post a comment
Agreeing that most technical obstacles to 3-D television have been overcome, a panel of experts at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas expressed optimism about consumer acceptance of the technology, citing the movie "Avatar" as a positive omen.
CES: Industry chief Shapiro says, 'Innovate or die!'
News & Analysis  
1/8/2010   1 comment
Consumer Electronics Ass'n CEO Gary Shapiro, addressing the Consumer Electronics Show, condemns government bailouts, advocating innovation as a survival strategy and warning against an "entitlement society."
CES: 'Connected' Ford redefines 'the driving experience'
News & Analysis  
1/8/2010   3 comments
Ford Motor Co. CEO Alan Mullaly, at the Consumer Electronics Show, explains how Ford will balance a wave of new dashboard infotainment features with his company's emphasis on reducing "driver distraction" and enhancing safety.
The gift of 3-D vision (if you're willing to risk the surgery)
12/22/2009   5 comments
Funny man David Benjamin has stumbled upon a technology that will make those goofy 3-D glasses a thing of the past -- maybe.
Astronaut invokes 'Apollo spirit' for 'hard days ahead'
News & Analysis  
3/31/2009   Post a comment
Kenneth Mattingly recalled the Apollo spirit of cooperation in the rescue of the Apollo 13 mission and encouraged engineers at the Embedded Systems Conference to apply the same determination to the current hard times.
FCC Chairman, at CES, hedges on shutoff date for analog TV
News & Analysis  
1/11/2009   Post a comment
Pressed by the incoming Obama administration to delay the planned conversion of all U.S. TV broadcast from analog to digital on February 17th, FCC Chairman Kevin Martin, at the Consumer Electronics Show, hedged his bets, admitting that a coupon program to subsidize conversion boxes, is not working.
Medical technologists at CES: 'Your lungs are calling!'
News & Analysis  
1/9/2009   Post a comment
A CES medical electronics panel, discussing the potential of implantable devices, remote patient monitoring and even robotic surgery, agreed that the U.S. health care system is poorly equipped to take advantage of the technology available bot now and in the future.
Sony CEO downplays economy, offers 'lucky seven' policies
News & Analysis  
1/8/2009   Post a comment
Howard Stringer, CEO of Sony, focused his keynote speech at the Consumer Electronics Show largely to new Sony products, while introducing celebrities such as Tom Hanks and Reggie Jackson, as Consumer Electronics Ass'n President welcomed in a new administration in Washington by issuing a subtle "hands-off" our industry warning.
Comment: CES Presents 'The Giant Horny Gorilla from the 3-D Lagoon'
1/8/2009   Post a comment
A commentary on the promotion of 3-D video at this year's Consumer Electronics Show, featuring a panoramic glimpse at the history of 3-D movies and a skeptical suggestion that 3-D in its new incarnation might be just a costly exercise in planned obsolescence.
Web functions key to mobile-phone growth, says NTT Docomo
News & Analysis  
10/1/2008   Post a comment
The future growth of the mobile handset industry, according to an NTT Docomo executive, will be the expansion of Internet functions on each device, with software standardization allowing global expansion.
Opinion: It's a Chinese thing. You wouldn't understand
9/14/2008   2 comments
Capitalism's love affair with communist China, as exemplified by a panel of China specialists at IBC 2008, is compared to American Left's discredited affection with the Soviet regime under Joseph Stalin.
Chinese CATV, "huge" but dysfunctional
News & Analysis  
9/13/2008   Post a comment
The Chinese market for cable television, although enormous, is controlled by local operators who resist any central guidance from the government and by subscribers unwilling or unable to pay more than $2 a month.
Broadcasters' 'parasites' dissected at IBC
News & Analysis  
9/12/2008   Post a comment
Leonardo Chiariglione, the father of MPEG, triggered a lively discussion of technology versus content as the essence of broadcasting, including remarks by British TV executive Michael Grade describing Google and other IPTV aggregators as "parasites."
Web content on your TV? Just press 'Play'
News & Analysis  
9/11/2008   Post a comment
Panelists at IBC in Amsterdam assure consumers that new simplified search engines and devices finally allow "convergence" of a vast library of Internet-based context with the big TV screen in the living room.
Engineers' pay in India growing fast; China, not so much
News & Analysis  
6/11/2008   Post a comment
Representatives from India and China, at the Design Automation Conference in Anaheim, offered a snapshot of salary growth for high-tech jobs in India, the outsourcing picture, and the problem of protecting intellectual property rights in China.
High-tech will relieve energy crisis--some day
News & Analysis  
6/10/2008   Post a comment
Gas prices, clean energy, immigration restrictions on foreign engineers and legislation to fund high-tech research dominated a panel discussion of election-year politics and its intersection with technology at the Design Automation Conference in Anaheim.
IPhone nudging embedded design toward standard
News & Analysis  
4/16/2008   1 comment
The trend toward standardized platforms for development of embedded systems is almost certain to accelerate, according to a panel of engineers who study consumer behavior.
DRM debate gets louder
News & Analysis  
4/16/2008   Post a comment
The battle over digital rights management resumed during the Embedded Systems Conference when a Hollywood studio proponent of DRM locked horns with an attorney who demanded unfettered consumer rights to use and share copyrighted video.
Opinion: A little charity, please
2/15/2008   Post a comment
The diminishment of "charity" as a motive for Third World telecom development and the current trend toward Social Darwinism should remind us of the Biblical exaltation of charity as the greatest of all virtues.
Wireless entrepreneurs are 'connecting the unconnected'
News & Analysis  
2/14/2008   Post a comment
Wireless entrepreneurs seek to "connect the unconnected."
Users' love affair with iPhone stumps Mobile World panel
News & Analysis  
2/14/2008   8 comments
A panel of experts at the Mobile World Congress used psychology, behaviorism, technology and a touch of mysticism to fathom users' fondness for Apple's iPhone experience, in hopes of helping mobile telcom companies to capture some of the iPhone magic.
'Free voice' forecast for mobile Web, but no 'free lunch'
News & Analysis  
2/13/2008   Post a comment
Talk may be cheap, but if Softbank CEO Masayoshi Son has his way, talk-- regardless of distance, length and the number of people in the conversation--will be free "because the mobile phone is becoming an Internet machine."
Mobile execs tout cooperation but differ over WiMax, LTE
News & Analysis  
2/12/2008   Post a comment
Cooperation emerged as the theme of Cisco Systems CEO John Chambers at the Mobile World Congress' keynote session.
GSMA: 'Don't take candy from strangers in cyberspace'
News & Analysis  
2/11/2008   Post a comment
The GSM Association, joining forces with EU governments and the International Telecommunication Union, announced a Mobile Alliance Against Child Sexual Abuse Content to forestall the wholesale migration of child pornography from the Internet to the fast-growing universe of mobile devices.
Media money moving to mobile--maybe
News & Analysis  
2/11/2008   Post a comment
Nokia executive Pertti Kasanen, at the Mobile World Congress, predicts that media services that migrate from fixed-line devices such as PCs and TVs to mobile devices will shift revenue and profits proportionately.
Commentary: Observing the herd at CES
1/17/2008   Post a comment
Our man at CES thinks the consumer electronics industry is selling the same old technology in new packages.
Negroponte seeks momentum for One Laptop Per Child at CES
News & Analysis  
1/10/2008   Post a comment
Nicholas Negroponte, founder of the One Laptop Per Child movement, to supply IT learning devices to children in developing countries, spoke at the Consumer Electronics Show, describing his program and technology and shrugging off the defection of Intel from the coalition of companies committed to the non-profit OLPC initiative.
'Internet cloud' hovers over CES panel
News & Analysis  
1/9/2008   Post a comment
CES panelists each took different angles on how to exploit the Internet to achieve their goal of "enabling your customers."
FCC chief promises CES a digital America, and higher cable bills
News & Analysis  
1/9/2008   Post a comment
Speaking to Consumer Electronics association president Gary Shapiro, FCC Chairman Kevin Martin previewed this month's auction of 700 megahertz wireless spectrum and guaranteed that the oft-delayed "digital transition," shutting down all analog TV broadcast in the U.S., will occur on schedule in February 2009. He was less sanguine about making the cable TV industry more consumer-friendly or ending the spiral of "ever-increasing cable rates."
Panasonic erects 'Life Wall' at CES
News & Analysis  
1/8/2008   Post a comment
The president of Panasonic AVC Networks Co. blitzed a standing-room crowd at the Consumer Electronics show with a cavalcade of new products, climaxing with the futuristic prospect of "Life Wall."
CEA chief blasts 'protectionists, isolationists, TV demagogues'
News & Analysis  
1/8/2008   Post a comment
Consumer Electronics Association president Gary Shapiro called out for pressure on Congress for free trade, including approval of treaties with Colombia, Panama and North Korea, while blasting, protectionists, isolationists, pundits and TV demagogues for placing security issues ahead of America's tradition of open borders and "engaging with the world."
A viral Christmas story
News & Analysis  
12/23/2007   Post a comment
Forget the Wii shortage, says humorist David Benjamin. This year's must-have, can't-find game console is the "Veeblefetzer." Good luck finding one, and Happy Holidays.
State of the Engineer: Immigration--The reactionary side of engineering
News & Analysis  
10/29/2007   Post a comment
Although engineers are decidedly open-minded about "green" technology, they are much less liberally disposed toward immigrants.
Salary Survey: They're not rock stars, but EEs earn satisfaction
Design How-To  
10/29/2007   4 comments
In the greater scheme of things and for the time being, engineers--especially in North America--have it pretty good, at least according to their replies to the EE Times Annual Salary and Opinion Survey.
Jack Sparrow: Alive and well, and living in the digital domain
Product News  
9/10/2007   Post a comment
The pirates of the digital domain have little to fear from authorities, according to the uneasy consensus of an expert panel that convened here during the International Broadcast Conference.
Broadcasting industry not dead yet, says CEA's Shapiro
News & Analysis  
9/10/2007   Post a comment
Gary Shapiro, president of the Consumer Electronics Association, assured his listeners that though broadcasting faces massive and fundamental changes in both its business and markets, the "death of a great industry" is hardly inevitable.
HD-DVD, Blu-ray sow high-definition 'confusion'
News & Analysis  
9/6/2007   Post a comment
The format battle among Hollywood studios and consumer electronics giants over control of the high-definition DVD market boils down to three words: "Confusion, confusion, confusion!"
Comment: 'No good reason'
4/18/2007   Post a comment
The massacre at Virginia Tech University again prompts us to say, "They died for no good reason."
Ease-of-use crisis: Designers or 'feature creeps'?
News & Analysis  
4/5/2007   Post a comment
A panel of experts on "ease of use" convened by the MIT Club of Northern California ruefully agreed that simplicity is one of the most complicated challenges in electronic engineering.
Comment: Al Gore and the inconvenient amendment
News & Analysis  
4/4/2007   Post a comment
In my effort to attend former Vice President Al Gore's keynote speech at the Embedded Systems Conference in San Jose, I bumbled into a curious sequence of events.
Italians 'willing to pay' for mobile TV
News & Analysis  
3/9/2007   Post a comment
Italy's 3 Italia has declared itself a modest success at not only carving out mobile TV spectrum but putting enough TV on handsets to attract more than 250,000 subscribers.
Google exec: TV's future looks bright--for 90 seconds
News & Analysis  
3/7/2007   Post a comment
Vincent Dureau, head of TV technology for Google, reassured his audience of television technologists at the DVB World Forum that TV remains "relevant," even as it seems to face a mortal threat to its popularity and revenue from his medium, the Internet.
Comment: Asked to choose between rice and ringtones
News & Analysis  
2/28/2007   Post a comment
The wireless industry's laudable goal of reaching out to the emerging world appears to have been derailed by the credit industry in the year since it was first announced.
Asked to choose between rice and ringtones
News & Analysis  
2/26/2007   Post a comment
The "emerging markets" initiative announced at the 3GSM World Congress by GSM Association CEO Rob Conway is a joint GSMA/ MasterCard program, in collaboration with banks, to help "unbanked and underbanked" itinerant workers remit small amounts to their families back home. Conway noted that the annual volume of such transfers exceeds $200 billion, but fees for sending money through current systems can devour as much as 40 percent of the remittance. Conway said GSMA and MasterCard would reduce s
EMF radiation: the cigarette of the 2000s?
News & Analysis  
2/19/2007   Post a comment
Given anxieties over the possible ill effects of electromagnetic-field (EMF) radiation, cell phone makers would be wise to design in safeguards, the CEO of Exradia Ltd. said last week. EMF "could be the cigarette of the 21st century," James Lawler told the 3GSM World Congress here.

Mobile TV preferences depend on where you live
News & Analysis  
2/15/2007   Post a comment
The level of worldwide interest in mobile television remains low and its future is uncertain, a market researcher told the 3GSM World Congress, and distinct national preferences pose programming problems for providers in different countries.
Is EMF radiation the cigarette of the 21st century?
News & Analysis  
2/13/2007   1 comment
James Lawler, CEO of EMX Corp. and Exradia Ltd., told the 3GSM World Congress that 40 percent of consumers believe this form of radiation might compromise their health.
Wireless carriers following the money
News & Analysis  
2/13/2007   Post a comment
ARPU is dead, but greed is still good.

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Max Maxfield

Aloha from EEWeb
Max Maxfield
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Just a few minutes ago as I pen these words, I posted this blog about this month's Cartoon Punchline Competition over on