Monday, June 19, 2006

Nokia and Siemens to merge their network units

Finland's Nokia and Germany's Siemens have announced monday that they will merge their mobile network businesses. The new joint venture's ownership will be split 50-50 and its combined value is estimated to be around 20 billion euros ($25 bln). Analysts see the move as another sign of the telecom industry's convergence, the previous one being the recent Alcatel and Lucent merger, and a way to compete with Ericsson in the equipment and network sector. The stock markets' response to the news was positive. Nokia expects to get cost savings of around 1.5 billion euros over the next few years from scrapping overlapping functions, which also means over 9000 jobs might be axed. The new company, Nokia Siemens Networks, will be based in Helsinki.

Yet another Slashdot news submission of mine, but somebody beat me to the punch. The news was accepted as Nokia & Siemens To Merge Network Business.

Thursday, June 15, 2006

Shuji Nakamura awarded the 2006 Millennium Technology Prize

University of California (UCSB) professor Shuji Nakamura, the japanese inventor of the bright green, white and blue GaN LEDs and a blue laser, has been awarded the 2006 Millennium Technology Prize. While blue LEDs are considered cool and thus needful things by most nerds, Nakamura adapted his blue LEDs to make a blue laser in the mid 90s. The next generation optical storage formats, HD-DVD and BluRay, are of course both based on blue laser. Also, his white LEDS need far less energy than normal incandescent lamps and can thus provide plenty of opportunity for energy-saving in the industrialized world.

But probably the most significant future application for Shuji Nakamura's invention comes in the form of sterilizing drinking water, since the the water purification process can be made cheaper and more efficient with the use of ultraviolet LEDs. This can improve the lives and health of tens of millions of people in developing countries. The 1 million euro (1.26 million dollars) prize is awarded by Finland's Millennium Prize Foundation every other year to innovators that aim to improve the quality of life. Inventor of the WWW Tim Berners-Lee received it in 2004.

A slashdot news submission of mine.