Consideo's Modeler is the sort of unusual software that turns up from time to time. It's designed to visualize and analyze "connections of arguments, ideas, strategies, projects, and processes." It can model complex, multifactor business strategies, but it's useful to everyone from scientists to students. Among the real-world virtues it claims are the ability to shorten meetings by focusing questions and clarifying arguments. It functions as both a qualitative analysis tool, identifying, tracing, and describing factors and connections ranging from "weak" to "strong," and a quantitative modeler, running simulations based on … Read more
LAS VEGAS--At last year's show, Mad Catz treated us to a series of new controllers, but at CES 2010 we're getting a taste of the first force-sensing flight stick we've seen.
Due out in February, the Saitek Pro Flight X65F Control System is designed specifically to emulate aircraft controls found in modern military fighter jets. While most conventional flight sticks tilt with your movement, the X65F responds solely to pressure while remaining still.
Bundled in with the X65F is a CD loaded with preset control maps for some of the most popular flight simulation games out there. … Read more
Housed in a 10-story building at NASA Ames Research Center in Mountain View, Calif., is one of the world's most unique machines. The Vertical Motion Simulator is a massive installation that gives pilots and engineers the opportunity to test aircraft design and explore flight characteristics with an incredibly high level of realism and accuracy.
Last week CNET visited the facility as NASA was testing out Altair, the design for the next generation of lunar landers. As they test the current design, pilots and engineers make recommendations, enhancements, and alterations.
MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif.--There I was, staking my claim to a pilot's slot in one of NASA's next-generation lunar landers, and to be perfectly frank, I think I'd better not quit my day job.
"I think we probably walked away from that," said NASA aerospace engineer Eric Mueller, after one rough touchdown. It was an overly charitable assessment of my performance. I'd hate to know what he was really thinking.
If you've been paying attention, you're probably aware that there are no current missions to the moon, and so you know that … Read more
ECG Simulator provides a variety of mimicked heartbeats and heart disease simulations. It's a valuable tool for learning about electrocardiology and the heart. With a simple layout and controls, this software could be an essential helper for medical students or anyone studying anatomy, physiology, or sports medicine.
This program's smooth interface is easy to navigate, even without medical training, which suggests that med students and others with medical backgrounds will have no trouble with its clearly labeled commands and visual aids. The program resembles an EKG monitor with a spiking heartbeat scrolling across the screen. ECG Simulator shines … Read more
Wall Street Raider provides a realistic simulation of the wheeling-dealing stock market lifestyle. Much like the real Wall Street, this game is incredibly complex and not for novices.
The program's interface was so confusingly dense that it practically gave us a headache with its multicolored, compartmentalized display. Unfortunately, we quickly discovered that Wall Street Raider is reserved for those with prior stock-trading knowledge, since the Help file was just as dense with text and jargon. From our limited understanding of Wall Street dealings, the program does an impressive job of recreating a trader's life, despite its horrible organization. … Read more
A hard-core racing simulation fan from Japan has created this very rudimentary (yet somewhat cool) DIY driving station out of PVC pipes, a wooden plank, and cable ties. While it doesn't look as polished as its video game arcade equivalent, this skeletal concoction is actually very functional, complete with a steering wheel and foot pedal mounts, plus folding capability for easy storage.
One important point we'd like to highlight: this driving station has nothing to do with Gran Turismo (which is a PlayStation exclusive) as claimed by game portal Kotaku, since the pictured steering wheel is manufactured by … Read more
An updated software tool combines energy-use evaluation with Google's 3D-modeling program to help improve building design in its early stages.
"OpenStudio is lauded around our office as one of the most complicated plug-ins ever written for SketchUp," Christopher Cronin, Google's strategist for SketchUp, said in a statement.
While Google may see OpenStudio as a plug-in for SketchUp, OpenStudio's creators may instead see SketchUp as an add-on to its simulation program.
The … Read more
Haunted 3D Rollercoaster Rush Free is a free three-level preview of Haunted 3D Rollercoaster Rush, a Halloween-themed, 3D follow-up to the 2D arcade game Rollercoaster Rush. Like its predecessor, Haunted 3D Rollercoaster Rush has you controlling roller coaster cars on a series of architecturally outrageous tracks, over jumps, curves, loop-the-loops, and increasingly vertiginous drops.
The interface gives you two options for controlling your cars: you can tilt your device right or left to accelerate or brake, or you can use a touch slider to meter your speed. In each level's Play Track mode, you earn from one to three … Read more
Room Arranger offers to help users by setting up a virtual room or rooms. While the controls require a steep learning curve, many users may feel that the exciting results are worth it.
This program definitely requires users without prior design experience to make a trip to the online Help file. Here, users will get a better idea of what the confusing icons and command buttons, which are scattered throughout, do. Designing a room was surprisingly simple after we got a feel for the program and did a little experimenting. Users choose the dimensions of their room and can even … Read more