Customize Algae Fuel With AXI

Our list of startups trying to squeeze fuel from pond scum is growing as quickly as an algal bloom. Today we can add AXI, a new startup spun out of the University of Washington TechTransfer program, which has scored an undisclosed amount of funding from Allied Minds, a seed investment firm.

AXI says it has a technology that allows it to customize algal strains to its, or the distributors’, liking. There are basically three main areas of innovations that can add to the algae to fuel world: there’s the tweaking of algal strains, the development of bioreactor systems and the commercialization of fuel production. AXI joins players like Seambiotic, Aurora Biofuels and Solazyme who are all focused on developing superior strains of algae.

This means AXI doesn’t have to dabble with messy bioreactors or fuel fermenters that other startups are using to make biofuels — if it doesn’t want to. Instead, many on our list of startups could actually be customers for AXI’s algae strains. Rose Ann Cattolico, developer of the AXI technology at the University of Washington, said in a statement that its methods for developing “growth and productivity traits” will help the algae fuel industry improve output.

Fujitsu refreshes the P1510D with the LOOX P70T/V convertible

loox_p.jpgWe were just chatting about the P1510D in the podcast last night and now Engadget says there’s a upgraded model called the LOOX P70T/V. While it definitely has an 8.9-inch swivel screen like the P1510D, the LOOX appears to have an active digitizer based on the following quote: "Of course, it can operate the input with the keyboard even with the pen and the stick point. In addition, because it can do also letter input and the like with the pen, can manage with also just the pen." Since there is no mention of any control or input via touch, I’m making an educated guess on the active digitizer; one thing’s for sure: there’s a resolution increase up to WXGA or 1280×720.

Additional specs include a new Intel Core Solo at 1.2 GHz, Bluetooth 2.0, mini-SD slot, 30/60/80 GB hard drive and 512 MB of memory; I would have liked to see a full GB in there because the small size of the device typically means a single RAM slot and high priced memory. Expect to shell out more than $2,150 for this nicely powered small device in late-September starting in Japan and eventually…maybe…other shores?

(via GottaBeMobile)


Sell CPU Cycles To CPU Share

[email protected] may have stopped looking for ET, but don’t tell that to recently launched CPUShare, a market place in CPU cycles. Will it work? Not likely, even though I dearly wish for them to succeed, but I am such a fan of grids. It has a lot of shortcomings, the biggest problem is that it works on Linux, and there aren’t too many Linux desktops out there. The biggest concern I have is that the prices of hardware are declining so rapidly that companies or universities, the likely buyers of these CPU cycles can quickly build their own grids for a few million dollars. During the 1990s bubble many grid/distributed computing companies raised hundreds of millions of dollars in an attempt to build a processing marketplace. Almost all failed. I hope CPU Share avoids that fate, for it is a noble cause.
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