#TheMJs, Sept. 16, 2016

On Fridays, Marcus Jackson (@MarcusJ_NG) provides a quick glance at the best Twitter has to offer.



Rich Warren: Apple's latest (ho hum) may still be its greatest

Eight days elapsed since Apple introduced the iPhone 7 and 7+ with iOS 10. The sun still rises in the east and sets in the west. I endured the entire tedious live-streamed press conference. Everything, as usual, was faster, better and more wonderful than last year's iPhone.

A continuing crescendo

The Pygmalion Festival started as a music showcase but has grown every year since 2005. This year, there's a Food Fest for the first time, says organizer Seth Fein, and more bands than ever, along with literature, arts and crafts, and high tech.

NCSA's founding director returning to mark 30th anniversary

URBANA — Larry Smarr, who brought the first supercomputer to the University of Illinois, is impressed by how the NCSA's work led to giant outcomes and tiny smartphones.

From those beginnings, he said Wednesday, "a modern smartphone is more powerful than the NCSA's first Cray supercomputer."

Joan Griffis/Illinois Ancestors: Online death records have been updated

Genealogy Roots Blog, the website maintained by genealogist Joe Beine, often mentioned in this column, includes links to data on the internet helpful to genealogical researchers.

Wired In: Fiona Kalensky

On Sundays, staff writer Paul Wood spotlights a high-tech difference maker. This week, Fiona Kalensky, 20, co-founder of Therapalz, a maker of robotic therapeutic stuffed animals aimed at helping people with dementia or similar issues. She is a junior studying systems engineering and design — but had considered nursing school.

Autonomous tractors: Future farmers?

URBANA — Case IH has created quite a social media buzz this month, unveiling a tractor that doesn't need a driver, but don't expect to see the cabless contraptions in the fields for harvest in coming weeks.

Brian McCoy, store manager at Birkey's in Urbana — a Case IH dealer — said it's going to be quite a while before autonomous tractors are for sale at their business.

Rich Warren: Sometimes, technology even gets the best of me

As your diligent technology writer for this venerable newspaper, technology is my friend, not my adversary. But not even I am immune to outside forces, specifically, the cable company.

Wired In: Jacob Sosnoff

On Sundays, staff writer Paul Wood spotlights a high-tech difference maker. This week, Jacob Sosnoff, 38, founder of STEADY and an associate professor in the University of Illinois Department of Kinesiology and Community Health. At the UI since 2005, Sosnoff is the director of the Illini Fall Prevention Clinic.

Rich Warren: Faster internet speeds available -- for a price

Like a tortoise rousing itself from a nap, U.S. internet speeds gradually accelerate. Businesses and some home users pay a premium for more bandwidth and higher speeds than the basic speeds offered by internet service providers (ISPs).

For most people it makes little difference whether a file downloads in 30 seconds or a minute.