On 3rd March, City Connect celebrates the birthday of Ronan Keating, the Irish singer/songwriter who came to prominence in 1994 as the lead singer of Boyzone. His solo career started [...]
Wolfram|Alpha positions itself not as a search engine to rival Google but as an “answer engine”. You give it a question and it seeks out and processes data on the internet to give you an answer. The system is based on the computational platform Mathematica, written by British scientist Stephen Wolfram in 1988. It was announced in March 2009 and launched 15 May 2009.
You could use it to determine which of two websites is most popular, to reveal your computer’s IP address, the direct distance between two places, trace your genealogy, get a weather forecast, calorie count, convert units, show local time for anywhere on the planet and much more.
Use the phrase “facebook report” as a search term, however, and W|A will let you connect your Facebook account and pull out lots of interesting relationships and facts about how you use the social networking site. For instance, it will show your five oldest and five youngest friends on the site. Apparently, organic chemist and pastel artist Dan is my oldest friend on there at 81 years and student friend Nessa is the youngest at 21.
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About the Author: David Bradley has worked in science communication for more than twenty years. After reading chemistry at university, he worked and travelled in the USA, did a stint in a QA/QC lab and then took on a role as a technical editor for the Royal Society of Chemistry. Then, following an extended trip to Australia, he returned and began contributing as a freelance to the likes of New Scientist and various trade magazines. He has been growing his portfolio and and has constructed the Sciencebase Science News and the Sciencetext technology website. He also runs the SciScoop Science Forum which is open to guest contributors on scientific topics.