TC Graham Prize for innovation

The Association for Iron & Steel Technology AIST has announced they will be awarding a $20,000 prize for innovative applications of steel.

http://www.asminternational.org/news/industry/-/journal_content/56/10192/21470854/NEWS

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1M Prize for Engineering

Presumably to celebrate the Queens Diamond Jubilee, and to also celebrate engineering, a 1M pound prize has been announced to be given biannually for achievements in engineering.

Lord Browne, Chairman of the Queen Elizabeth Prize Foundation, said, ‘Too often the engineers behind the most brilliant innovations remain hidden – The Queen Elizabeth Prize aims to change that. It will celebrate, on an international scale, the very best engineering in the world’.
Candidates from around the world are able to win the prize, which is funded by 11 British and Indian companies, including BP. Organisers hope that the £1m award will come to rival the level of prestige enjoyed by the Nobel Prize.

http://www.iom3.org/news/prime-minister-launches-1m-queen-elizabeth-prize-engineering

This is interesting, but I think to rival the Nobel prize a fund would need to be established where the funding for the prize is completely independent from the sponsoring companies. I also think it is worth pointing out that although the Nobel Prize is given in Physics, Chemistry, Peace, Literature and Physiology or Medicine, it is worth reminding people that is was established by an Engineer.

— update —

The first Queen Elizabeth Prize for Engineering of 1 Million Pounds was awarded to Sir Tim Berners-Lee, Robert Kahn, Vinton Cerf, Louis Pouzin and Marc Andreessen for their pioneering work developing the the internet.

Read about the first QEEP at the BBC

Boeing 787 Dreamliner Launch

The Boeing Dreamliner was launched for the first test flight yesterday.

The Boeing 787 is around the same size as 767-300. However the 787 is planned to be 20% more fuel-efficient than the 767. The efficiency comes equally from improvements in the engines, aerodynamics and reduced weight by use of composite materials, and the use of improved systems.

20% improvement in efficiency should translate into a 15% saving in operational efficiency.

Each plane can interchangeably use either the General Electric GEnx or Rolls-Royce Trent 1000, due to the design of a common interface. The Rolls-Royce engine was used for the test-flight.

Windows Vista Sounds, The Same Just Quieter

You have to make a new release of your product, you need to convince people you have changed it, but actually changing things is going to make them unusable. The solution? If you are developing a computer operating system for a captive audience? You need to add more eye-candy to keep the hardware manufacturers and retailers happy, then spend 18 months tweaking the sound themes.

Is it really true they spent 18 months to develop the windows start-up sound?