ISTVS Newswire / Membership Directory & the weekend read
Reminder | Early-bird deadline coming April 30 Early-bird deadline is April 30 for submissions for the 2013 ISTVS 7th Americas Regional Conference, which we're holding in conjunction with the annual meeting of the Agronomy Society of America.
Announcement | ISTVS Membership Directory Our members-only LinkedIn group welcomes the participation of all ISTVS members. Connect with others who share your work interests and reach out to find colleagues with particular areas of expertise for collaboration. If you're not already a member, visit the group here and request membership.
Tire Society Call for Papers | The Tire Society is hosting its 32nd annual conference September 10-11, 2013, in Akron, Ohio, USA. This conference is attended by engineers & scientists from the tire & vehicle industries, academia, & government from around the world. Deadline for submitting papers extended to April 30. Link
Off-highway goes hybrid | Excavators and wheel loaders: Deere, Caterpillar, Ricardo, Eaton, and Dana are all manufacturers bringing large hydraulic and electric power hybrid vehicles to market. SAE reports that benefits include reduced fuel consumption and emissions and improved performance through more consistent torque delivery. Read about a hybrid Humvee, too.
New rocky planets | NASA's Kepler has discovered two new planetary systems, including the smallest "habitable zone" planets so far. The "habitable zone" is the range of distance from a star where the surface temperature of an orbiting planet might be suitable for liquid water. NY Times story here.
Robot Futures: Cool, with a chance of lost humanity | A new book by the head of Carnegie Mellon's Community Robotics, Education and Technology Empowerment (CREATE) Lab is a sober look at the human side effects of current robotics trends. Illah Nourbakhsh is also blogging on the topic.
Browse books at scale | Harvard Library Innovation Lab has launched a useful and appealing way to browse books at scale. StackLife shows a visualization of books on a scrollable shelf, turned sideways so you can read the spines. It always shows you books in a context: remember browsing the stacks, for those of us old enough to remember? FAQs here. Cf: Open Library. Digital Public Library of America.
We've all been there | The umbilical data cable of the Antares rocket got pulled accidentally 12 minutes before launch on Wednesday. Mission control lost all ability to communicate with the flight computer: scrub. Commiserate here. via @adamspacemann
Hidden gem at Google | Google Alerts are one of Google's hidden gems. If you can think of a useful search that you perform on a semi-regular basis, Google Alerts can automate it for you. Set one up to follow your organization, for example, and you'll know when you are mentioned online by other.
And a Google Maps hack | You can often zoom in closer than the defaults allow using this trick.
Waterless washing | This could be big: LG is building a washing machine that doesn't use water. Really really efficient refridgerators, too. Next-gen smart appliances are on the way.
Neuroplasticity for fun and profit | Encouragement to always be learning: Why "Useless" Skills Like Juggling Are Still Worth Learning. (Editor: See next item for a quick way to neuroplay right now.)
Quick check on your computing age | Harvard's Lab in the Wild is working to make computers more accessible and easier to use. Take this test and the program will guess your age. Created by the Intelligent Interactive Systems Group. (Editor: I scored a very generous 29, but only because I spend far too much time at a computer.)
Neologisms of our time | The 10 best words the internet has given English. How many do you know? Avatars. #Hashtags. Trolling. Memes. Cupertinos. Meh. Geeks. Don't know why he left out nerds.
Travel a lot? | You might pick up something useful here: How to Sleep on a Plane.
2013 ISTVS 7th Americas Regional Conference
Prof. Schalk Els | Ms. Heidi Howard
Soil and terrain modeling and characterization | Track 1
Dr. Lutz Richter | Mr. Jeff Durst
Planetary rovers and mobile robotics | Track 2
Prof. Paul Ayers | Prof. Corina Sandu | Mr. Jody Priddy
Tires, wheels, and tracks modeling | Track 3
Dr. George Mason | Dr. Lal Kushwaha
Agricultural and earthmoving equipment | Track 4
Dr. Sally Shoop | Mr. Timothy Cary
Operation on soils, vegetation, snow, and ice | Track 5
Mr. Randy Jones | Mr. Daniel Koch | Dr. Paramsothy Jayakumar
Vehicle dynamics, mobility, and safety | Track 6
Mr. Niels Svendsen | Ms. Pat Sullivan | Ms. Stephanie Robert
Terramechanics | Track 7
International Society for Terrain-Vehicle Systems
Dr. Lutz Richter, General Secretary
Dr. Sally Shoop, President
Dr. Peter Kiss, Vice President