IBM and Space Flight: What’s Next for Billions of Earth-Like Planets in the Galaxy?

Missions of the future?  (Photo Credit:  IBM 100)

Missions of the future?  (Photo Credit: IBM 100)

A new analysis of data from NASA’s Kepler spacecraft by Erik Petigura has revealed that there could be billions of habitable Earth-size planets in the galaxy.  According to Mr. Petigura’s paper, published Monday in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, one out of every five sunlike stars in the galaxy has a planet roughly the size of Earth flying in orbits around those suns – at distances that make temperatures on the planet neither too hot nor too cold for liquid water to exist.

The Space Shuttle Columbia’s launch on April 12, 1981, with five IBM computers, marked humanity’s first reusable spacecraft and the beginning the US Space Shuttle Program.  (Photo Credit:  IBM 100)

The Space Shuttle Columbia’s launch on April 12, 1981, with five IBM computers, marked humanity’s first reusable spacecraft and the beginning the US Space Shuttle Program. (Photo Credit: IBM 100)

So what’s next in space exploration?  Some scientists speculate that a permanent residence on the Moon would be the next logical step. Others predict a human mission to Mars will be feasible by the mid-21st century. Whatever the task at hand, technology companies like IBM and others will be there to lend their technological know-how and scientific expertise to help explore the boundaries of what’s possible.

For many millions of people around the world, the most dramatic moment in the history of space flight was the first lunar landing 35 years ago. Of course, the journey to the Moon began long before Neil Armstrong stepped out of the Eagle onto the Sea of Tranquility, and it was built on a series of accumulating achievements over many years. IBM was involved both at the beginning of that journey and throughout. And in the three decades following the July 1969 Apollo 11 mission, IBM continued to play an important role in mankind’s exploration of the high frontier and in the increasing use of space for science, communications and business.

Did you know that IBM’s involvement with the US space program began even before NASA existed?  In fact, IBM developed computers for NASA’s predecessor, the US National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics. IBM was involved in the Apollo program from the beginning. And in the three decades following the July 1969 Apollo 11 mission, IBM continued to play an important role in humankind’s exploration of the high frontier—helping advance science, communications and business.  Learn more

(Video description):  A global collaboration of 19 countries, the SKA will be the largest and most sensitive radio telescope ever built. The SKA will revolutionize humankind’s understanding of the cosmos by answering questions about the origin and evolution of the universe, as well as other mysteries of time and space. It will consist of thousands of receptors stretched across an area the size of a continent—the total collecting area of these receptors combined will be approximately one square kilometer. IBM is working to map and model the complex ecosystem of capabilities that will be required to build the SKA.

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- Posted by Julie Yamamoto, Program Manager, The Greater IBM Connection

IBM Werewolf – Happy Halloween!

Produced in 2006 for Lenovo by Motion Theory – Full Credits can be found here

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-Posted by Julie Yamamoto, Program Manager, The Greater IBM Connection

IBM Computer Creativity: 3 Things You Never Knew – Movies, Cooking, Books

Image Credit:  Lord of the Rings movie trilogy

Image Credit: Lord of the Rings movie trilogy

This is Part 2 of the IBM Creativity Series – Part 1 covered 3 Things You Never Knew About IBM Creativity – Games, Art, and Music. This post will cover 3 things you never knew about IBM computer creativity.

In addition to IBM driving innovation and creativity for 102 years, as IBM CEO Ginni Rometty recently shared, IBM computers have also long been used to help spur the creative process.  Here are few of the more notable examples of how IBM computers and technology played a critical part in the creative process.

Category 1 (Movies):  

Lord of The Rings Trilogy:  IBM supplied digital effects facility Weta Digital, Ltd., with 150 IBM® IntelliStation® workstations, running Linux®, for the Lord of the Rings movie trilogy. Weta created effects, from digital horses to Gollum, a character in the series.  Weta and its sister company, Weta Workshop, won two Oscars for their digital effects work on the first “Lord of The Rings” trilogy.  To learn more:

Image Credit:  IMDb

Image Credit: IMDb

Despicable Me:  IBM provided an iDataPlex system to Illumination Entertainment to help it meet the massive production requirements involved in creating the computer-animated 3-D feature film, “Despicable Me”, released in 2010.  The animation process to produce the film generated 142 terabytes of data — an amount roughly equivalent to the traffic generated by over 118 million active MySpace users or 250,000 streams of 25 million songs.  The iDataPlex solution also included a water-cooled door that allows the system to run with no air conditioning required, saving up to 40% of the power used in typical server configurations for this type of production process.  To learn more:

Image Credit:  Fast Company (Italian grilled lobster, with a complex set of pairings including salt, pepper, saffron, green olives, tomato, pumpkin, mint, oregano, white wine, water, macaroni, orange juice, orange, bacon, and oil. )

Image Credit: Fast Company (Italian grilled lobster, with a complex set of pairings including salt, pepper, saffron, green olives, tomato, pumpkin, mint, oregano, white wine, water, macaroni, orange juice, orange, bacon, and oil. )

Category 2 (Cooking):  When you think of the creative things that humans do, cooking comes to mind as one creative outlet that appeals to many.  After winning at chess and Jeopardy, taking on large databases of information to cook up something creative for dinner seems like a logical step.  After all, while most chefs may only consider pairings of hundreds of different ingredients for the evening meal, there are probably unlimited possibilities of pairings that might taste good.  So, the IBM flavorbot is looking to put together underrated highly flavorful ingredients, unusual but tasty flavor pairings, and bring them all together into whole recipes.  To generate leads, the flavorbot looks at three databases of information – recipe index, hedonic psychophysics (quantification of what flavors people like at the molecular level), and chemoinformatics (connecting what foods the molecular flavor is actually in).  To learn more, see the links below:

Category 3 (Books):  Ever heard of “Abechamycin”?  It’s not a new antibiotic….but it may be one day.  At Pfizer in 1956, an IBM 702 helped create a 198-page, 42,000 word book of potential chemical names as a way of spurring and accelerating the naming process for the many new drugs the firm introduced on an annual basis.  Learn more.

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- By Julie Yamamoto, Program Manager, The Greater IBM Connection, and Paul Lasewicz, IBM Corporate Archivist

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The October 2013 theme for The Greater IBM Connection is ”creativity and innovation”, and The Greater IBM Connection will be sharing various tips, tools, and resources on this topic.

Coffee Personality: What Does Your Favorite Coffee Say About You? (Infographic)

Graphic Credit:  Johnny Self, GSU

Graphic Credit: Johnny Self, GSU

Clinical psychologist Dr Ramani Durvasula recently conducted a study of 1,000 coffee drinkers and assessed a number of common personality styles and psychological traits.  The study found that people who drink certain types of coffee share common attributes such as introversion and extroversion; patience; perfectionism; warmth; vigilance; sensitivity; and social boldness, among others.  For example, if you drink your coffee black, you might be quiet and moody, while if you drink iced coffees or frappucinos, you might be a trendsetter.  To learn more, check out some of the infographics and articles below.

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- Posted by Julie Yamamoto, Program Manager, The Greater IBM Connection

Coffee Break: The Giant Cable Ball Attack!

Photo Credit:  David Lan

Photo Credit: David Lan

These are some fun IBM Blade Center ads from a few years ago.  Enjoy!

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- Posted by Julie Yamamoto, Program Manager The Greater IBM Connection

Do You Know the IBM Blue? Play Name That Blue

tumblr_muii6mg6G61s141c3o1_r1_500

Graphic from IBMlr

Several companies use blue as part of their brand.  Do you know which is the IBM blue? Play Name that Blue (via Fast Company) – from IBMblr

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–Posted by Julie Yamamoto, Program Manager, The Greater IBM Connection

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The October 2013 theme for The Greater IBM Connection is ”creativity and innovation”, and The Greater IBM Connection will be sharing various tips, tools, and resources on this topic.

3 Things You Never Knew About IBM Creativity – Games, Art, and Music

smarter ideaIn IBM’s 2010 Global CEO study of over 1,500 corporate heads and public sector leaders across 60 nations and 33 industries, creativity was touted as being the most important leadership quality for success, outweighing even integrity and global thinking.

So how much creativity and innovation can the world’s 13th largest employer inspire?  Apparently, quite a lot, as the following list shows.  So here is today’s list of cool things you never knew about IBM creativity, focusing on Games, Art, and Music.

1. IBM and Serious Games

You may have heard of Zynga when it comes to games, but did you know that FastCompany listed IBM as one of the Top 10 Companies in Gaming due to our work in serious games?  IBM has been investing in serious games since 2000 and has made advances in performing key research, prototypes, and/or complete games in these five areas – technical training, leadership skill-building, marketing, talent on-boarding, and productivity building.  Watch the trailer below and learn more about IBM and Serious Games here.

2. IBM and Art

Image credit:  Hermitage Museum

Image credit: Hermitage Museum

Of course, there is a lot of very creative IBM advertising art to be found as the quick list below shows.  But there are a number of other ways that IBM has had a connection to art.  For example, in 1997, IBM built the online Hermitage Museum for Hermitage in Russia which was touted as the “World’s Best Online Museum” by National Geographic Traveler.   IBM was also a major collaborator on the Eternal Egypt project and website, with the goal of bringing to light more than 5000 years of Egyptian civilization to help preserve it for tourists, students and scholars.  More recently, the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York worked with IBM to install a wireless sensor network to help preserve the works of art in its world-renowned, encyclopedic collection.  Works of art are very sensitive to fluctuations in temperature, relative humidity, and other environmental conditions.  IBM’s sensor network is enabling the museum’s scientists to monitor and analyze the reaction of art objects to environmental changes that will help them to develop predictive models for art preservation more accurately.  Learn more about IBM and art here.

Other IBM Art Related

3. IBM and Music

IBM Orchestra in 1944 - courtesy of IBM Archives

IBM Orchestra in 1944 – courtesy of IBM Archives

IBM has a long history with music.  Did you know that there was even an official company song book, published in the 1930s, called Songs of the IBM?  It started in the earliest years of the company’s history with a 32 member employee band, which was followed by a variety of other employee musical groups — an orchestra, singing groups for men, for women, for men and women, even for children.  Soon, singing and instrumental performances spread to other IBM sites and groups, and many IBM meetings would start with employees singing various “fellowship songs”, such as “Ever Onward” (the IBM rally song).  However, IBM’s connection to music was just not limited to employee musical groups.  Much like IBM’s modern-day creativity often manifests itself in the form of leveraging technology to create something very cool like the world’s smallest movie made from atoms, there were early creative efforts to create music from mainframes as the stories below show.  Learn more about IBM and music here.

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- By Julie Yamamoto, Program Manager, The Greater IBM Connection

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The October 2013 theme for The Greater IBM Connection is ”creativity and innovation”, and The Greater IBM Connection will be sharing various tips, tools, and resources on this topic.

Light-hearted Introduction to Cloud Computing

Watch this cartoon video for a light-hearted introduction to the concept of cloud computing and what’s possible when IT systems are dynamic and smarter.

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Video courtesy of IBM Smarter Planet Australia/New Zealand:

- Posted by Julie Yamamoto, Program Manager The Greater IBM Connection

Are You Smarter Than Watson? Try Playing the Trivia Challenge

Photo credit:  LA Times

Photo credit: LA Times

In 2011, IBM’s Watson beat the reigning Jeopardy champions, but maybe you are smarter?  Give it a try with this interactive Trivia challenge from The New York Times where you can play against Watson yourself –> play trivia against Watson

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- Posted by Julie Yamamoto, Program Manager, The Greater IBM Connection

Coffee Break Cartoon: How Not To Collaborate in the Workplace

tumblr_mtyd8ul59h1s141c3o1_500

How not to work smart, from IBMblr
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Cartoon courtesy of @MidmarketIBM:

- Posted by Julie Yamamoto, Program Manager The Greater IBM Connection