Talk to Your Mirror

AutoLink has combined a cellular phone and a global positioning system to work from a car's rearview mirror.

Users can immediately determine their exact location, request emergency and roadside assistance, receive driving directions and information on restaurants, hotels or the shortest routes.

AutoLink's cellular phone system features a voice recognition system that allows drivers to keep their hands on the wheels. A small display screen on the mirror also provides compass direction and temperature.

The system costs about $800.

For additional information, contact HighwayMaster Communications, 16479 Dallas Parkway, Suite 710 Dallas, TX 75248. Call 800/828-4696.

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Simulated Eye Surgery

A new surgical simulation technology was demonstrated at the American Medical Association's Medicine Meets Virtual Reality conference. The technology allows surgeons and students to practice delicate opthalmic surgery.

During the practice session, the user looks through a mounted binocular -- revealing a computer-generated eye -- and holds a joystick manipulated much like a surgeon's scalpel. Surgeons can "feel" the scalpel as they practice making incisions on the virtual cornea.

The system uses 3D immersive display binoculars from n-Vision, a SensAble Technologies Phantom 3D Touch device, and it runs on an Intergraph NT workstation with visualization software developed by the University of Colorado Center for Human Simulation.

For additional information, contact n-Vision, 7680 Old Springhouse Road, Madison Building, First Floor, Mclean, VA 22102. Call Kiera Reilly at 703/506-8808 x 3002.

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Next Generation PCs

Toshiba Infinia 7260 is not just any PC desktop computer sitting on a store shelf.

Infinia 7260 allows users to switch among CD, TV, radio, phone or video conferencing capabilities with just a touch of a button. Users can surf online while listening to the radio or update their database while watching a football game on television.

A sleep button and an "Instant On" feature is also provided, which brings the system right back to where users left off.

Every Infinia has access to Toshiba's InTouch Center -- toll-free technical support available 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Infinia 7260 features a 266MHz Pentium Processor with MMX, a 6.4GB hard drive, 64MB EDO RAM, a 24X CD-ROM and a 56Kps modem. It is bundled with Windows 95, Microsoft 97, Netscape Navigator, Quicken and many other applications.

For additional information, contact Toshiba, Computer Division System, P.O. Box 19724, Irvine, CA 92623. Call 800/457-7777.

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Optical Storage

on Bacteria

Scientists at Syracuse University are using protein found in bacteriorhodospin -- a bacteria found in the salt marshes -- to write and store data.

Jeff Stuart, senior research scientist, said that two lasers beams are used to access and/or write information to a bit of the protein. These beams cause structural changes in the protein similar to how an optical plate is altered.

The protein has the ability to store information three dimensionally and for up to 5 years. "Currently, we are working on a storage system that can store up to 10GB of information," said Stuart.

For additional information, contact Syracuse University, Chemistry Department, Center for Science & Technology, Room 1014, Syracuse, NY 13244. Call Jeff Stuart at 315/443-5908.

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Secure Your Phone Conversation

The Tele Safe II is a phone security device that alerts users to the presence of an eavesdropper on their telephone line. Automatic muting ensures that no sensitive information is revealed.

It features a comprehensive LED display, auto-mute function and RF sensitivity adjustment. It weighs 5.4 ounces and requires a 9V alkaline battery.

For additional information, contact P3 International, 71 W. 23rd St., New York, NY 10010. Call Scott Longnecker at 212/741-7373.

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Underwater Encounter