New Products

June 15, 2011
By George I. Seffers, SIGNAL Connections
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Wearable Tactical System

The Modular Tactical System integrates a command, control, communications, computers, intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance capability with the rest of the equipment worn by the dismounted soldier. The commercial system is produced by Black Diamond Advanced Technologies, Tempe, Arizona, and was tested by special operations units during operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan. It offers a vest-based configuration with a tactical mission controller, cables routed through an interchangeable cummerbund with body armor, a night vision goggle-compatible visual display and a tactical hub for interfacing with mission-specific components, such as range finders. The system can be powered by a wide array of existing military batteries. It is designed to be interoperable with existing systems already on the battlefield. It is adaptable for specialized missions requiring application-specific equipment, including targeting, combat medics, explosive ordnance disposal, combat weather and military intelligence.

Mobile Eye Tracker

Eye-tracking technology is used to test how users view data presented on the computer screen. Now, that technology is being applied to mobile devices and mobile application software. Tobii Technology AB, Danderyd, Sweden, recently introduced the Tobii Mobile Device Testing Solution. The technology is designed to enhance the precision of usability studies for mobile devices and mobile applications and allow manufacturers to understand exactly what consumers see using their devices. The Tobii system can test a wide range of mobile devices, operating systems and graphical user interfaces, and it provides quantitative data for testing any size or type of mobile device. It can be used to test cell phones, smartphones, tablets, e-readers, portable gaming products and other mobile gadgets, including iPhone, Android and BlackBerry platforms. It can be used to determine, for example, whether a user is actually reading the name of a software application or simply looking at the application’s icon. Participant calibration time takes less than one minute, and devices or applications can be tested under varying light conditions.
TriMode Vessel Identification

Traditionally, marine vessel crews rely on expensive satellite communications systems for vessel reporting and messaging. But PortVision, Houston, is offering a less expensive alternative by integrating a two-way cellular and satellite service for messaging and position reports into its automatic identification system (AIS). It also includes least-cost routing, which company officials say can cut overall expenses in half. TriMode, a Web-based solution, increases fleet visibility and enhances maritime business intelligence while saving money on hardware and airtime costs. The system integrates least-cost routing across three communication paths, including: AIS for real-time reporting of the fleet and other AIS-enabled vessels when near shore or in port; cellular for near-real-time reporting at very low cost whenever a vessel is within a cellular coverage area; and satellite for guaranteed reporting and text messaging whenever cellular is unavailable. Customers can use the TriMode service to create email alerts, view arrival and departure history, and tap into PortVision’s data warehouse, which processes 40 million vessel positions daily and archives more than 15 billion arrival, departure and vessel movement records spanning the last five years. It can also be used to improve safety and efficiency; streamline vendor and resource coordination; handle all traffic scheduling, dispatch and management; perform integrated port delay reporting and analysis; enhance market intelligence; and accelerate and improve incident response.

Hard Drive Hammer

In this corner stands the new Model 0101 Sledgehammer Hard Drive Crusher. The opposition can be any computer hard drive regardless of size, format or type, including 3.5” and 2.5” technology. The outcome of this particular death match is practically assured because the Sledgehammer, produced by Security Engineered Machinery (SEM), uses 12,000 pounds of hydraulic force to destroy any computer hard drive in 10 seconds or less. When users place a drive—or multiple laptop or notebook drives—in the crusher, close the safety door and push the button of ultimate destruction, a conical punch inside the unit causes catastrophic trauma to the hard drive’s chassis while destroying its internal platter. The hard drive’s death is quick, quiet, clean and humane. The Sledgehammer makes it easy for offices, hospitals, data centers and other facilities to destroy confidential or sensitive information in accordance with various government regulations and industry standards. It also satisfies National Security Agency (NSA) requirements for physical destruction of drives after they have been degaussed by an NSA-listed degausser. The system is 22 inches tall and weighs in at 105 pounds. It uses a standard 120-volt wall outlet. To protect the operator, a safety interlock prevents the unit from functioning while the door is open, and an emergency stop button halts operation.

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