12.1.05

Technology in Korea

In spite of the lack of movement, or progress, or cheaper prices :) in some areas of technology, it does appear that Korea is ahead in some ways compared to home. I came to Korea expecting to buy, among other things, a cheap laptop (a digital camera would be nice to). To my chagrin I found out that laptops are not only ridiculously expensive out here, they are behind. I have no idea why... they just are. I could, and did, order a computer from the U.S. that was, after shipping and customs fees, cheaper than I would have paid to get a worse computer out here. Digital cameras are also more expensive out here than on the internet from N. American websites, but not by nearly as much as the laptops were.

Meanwhile, cell phone technology, from what I know, is quite far ahead. Maybe I am just out of touch with what they have at home? but in march they are releasing a new phone with a whole array of sensors so that it can detect movement in a three dimensional plane. That means that when you want to hang up your phone you can shake it twice. What to speed dial the third number in your phone book? draw a three in the air in front of your phone. What about if your listening to MP3's? (a fairly common feature on phones out here). Move the phone sharply to the right to go to the next song. And on it goes, using this new interface with all the features of the phone (mp3, internet if you want it, phone, camera, etc.). Do we have stuff like this at home?

Also, there was a new bioethics law passed last January in Korea, that came into effect on Jan 1st of this year. They are officially funding stem cell research. Apparently some Korea researcher 2 years ago or so successfully cloned human embryo's and extracted stem cells for research. Immediately afterward he stopped due to ethical concerns, but now that it is legal in S. Korea he is beginning again. He already has 1.1 billion dollars in private and government support. From what I gather the new bioethics law allows stem cell research for therapeutic purposes.

I am not making moral judgements on any of this stuff. I wonder if we have that cell phone at home. I wonder if stuff like this is going on a lot more than is announced at home. With the U.S.'s famous position on stem cells, exactly what is being suppressed in the media? Maybe I am to cynical. I find it all interesting anyway.

2 comments:

Arnold said...

Yeah, those Koreans are always up to something. Korea isn't as cheap as it used to be. You'd think it'd be like China where you can buy electronic gadgets off the street for almost a quarter of the price of something in N. America. They're catching up to Japan. Hope you're having fun out there. Tell Mrs. Demoline (aka your wife, not your mom cause I don't know her, but I'm sure she's a nice woman), I said, "Hi!"

Peace.

Bucky Jr. said...

Speaking of technolololology. I've picked up Resident Evil 4 Andrew. Leon is the main character so of course, I automatically thought of you. ;) Email me sometime man.