Technology

Community news on your mobile device

Community news on your mobile device

I have some great news for anyone who uses a mobile device to consume news.

The new KOMO News mobile app now includes community stories!

If you read this site you care about news here in your community.   Now you can download the new app for your iPhone, Andriod or iPad and read the stories you see here when you are on the go too.

Girl Scout cookies are just a mouse click away

Girl Scout cookies are just a mouse click away

Once upon a time, getting your mitts on a box of Girl Scout cookies meant waiting patiently for a scouting troop to wander through your neighborhood.

Or, if you really needed to get your thin mint fix, you could always drive from one grocery store to another in hopes of running into a cookie booth.

Now, thanks to advances in technology, finding Girl Scout cookies takes little more than a computer or smart phone. Visit the "Cookie Locator" website, type in your zip code, and before you know it you'll be knee deep in Lemon Chalet Cremes and Samoas.

UW Students Hack Kinect to enable robotic surgery

 

Fredrik Ryden is a graduate student from Sweden working with University of Washington Electrical Engineering Professors.  His goal, to one day make surgeries safer for doctors by using virtual environments.  "The problem with surgical robotics today is that the surgeon can see what he's doing but he can't feel what he's doing," Ryden says.

Ryden recently took up a challenge from his professors: to hack into Microsoft's Kinect and reprogram it to add sensory feedback.  A process that can take some hackers up to two months to complete.  Fredrik did it in slightly less time.  "I bought it on Friday and it was finished on Monday."

Right now the UW team is exploring Kinect's potential to improve robotic surgeries by creatine off-limit aeras that would protect vital organs around the body.  But the most exciting part for the team?  The Kinect is relatively cheap and mass produced, meaning that this technology which previously cost tens of thousands of dollars could potentially be made much much cheaper in the future.

Mocha on your mobile: Starbucks rolls out wireless payment nationwide

Mocha on your mobile: Starbucks rolls out wireless payment nationwide

Next time you order that venti, half-skinny, half-1 percent, extra-hot cappuccino (with whip), perhaps the least complicated part will be how you pay.

Starting today, Seattle-based Starbucks has launched mobile payment in all of its company-operated stores in the United States. The technology allows customers to pay for their in-store purchases using a smartphone.

Currently, 20 percent of all Starbucks purchases are paid for using a mobile device, according to the company. The way it works: customers download the Starbucks Card Mobile App and register a Starbucks card (like a gift card). Customers then pay for their mochas (or lattes, or Americanos) by placing a cell phone or wireless device in front of a scanner on the counter, and scan their App's barcode to pay.

Mobile payment "elevates the customer experience by delivering convenience, rewarding loyalty and continuing to build an emotional connection with our customers," said Brady Brewer, vice president Starbucks Card and Brand Loyalty, in a statement.