Another criteria of an ideal life-harboring earth analog is that it should orbit a solar analog; that is, a star much like our Sun. However, this criteria may not be entirely valid as many different types of stars can provide a local environment hospitable to life. For example, in the Milky Way, most stars are smaller and dimmer than the Sun. One such star, TRAPPIST-1, is located 12 parsecs (39 light years) away and is roughly 10 times smaller and 2,000 times dimmer than our sun, yet it harbors at least 6 earth-like planets in its habitable zone. While these conditions may seem unfavorable to life as we know it, TRAPPIST-1 is expected to continue burning for 12 trillion years (compared to our suns remaining 5 billion year lifetime) which is time enough for life to evolve de novo. For comparison, life evolved on earth in a mere 3-4 billion years.
Analog Dialogue is a forum for the exchange of circuits, systems, and software for real-world signal processing and is the technical magazine published by Analog Devices. It discusses products, applications, technology, and techniques for analog, digital, and mixed-signal processing. Analog Dialogue is published monthly on the Web. The featured technical articles are also compiled in quarterly print editions.
In 1982, Atari released a controller with a potentiometer-based analog joystick for their Atari 5200 home console. However, its non-centering joystick design proved to be ungainly and unreliable, alienating many consumers at the time. During that same year, General Consumer Electronics introduced the Vectrex, a vector graphics based system which used a self-centering analog joystick.
In 1999, Sony's Ape Escape became the first video game in history to require the use of two analog sticks.
In the console generations that followed, many video game console controllers have included two analog sticks, with the exception of the Sega Dreamcast controller and Nintendo's Wii Remote controller. Other exceptions to this dual-stick rule are Sony's PlayStation Portable and Nintendo's 3DS handheld game consoles aside from the New 3DS (although the latter may be upgraded to dual-stick functionality through the use of an accessory), which both feature only a single small, flat sliding analog "nub". However, Sony's PlayStation Vita does have a dual analog stick configuration.
On November 20, 1997, Sony released their third analog controller to the market: the DualShock. The controller featured similar twin analog sticks to the Dual Analog, although they featured convex rubber tips rather than concave plastic ones. Sony also removed the third analog (flightstick) mode and added two new buttons, L3 and R3, under the thumbsticks, which could be used by pressing down on the sticks.
On July 5, 1996, Sega released Nights into Dreams... for their Saturn console in Japan; bundled with it was the Saturn 3D control pad which featured an analog pad intended to give the player more fluid control over that game's flight-based gameplay. The analog pad used magnet-based Hall effect sensors, which was a unique implementation of the technology that was carried forward into the design of the Dreamcast controller as well. The Saturn's analog controller was previously mentioned in the June 1996 issue of Computer and Video Games magazine.
In 1967, Analog Devices first published Analog Dialogue. Dan Sheingold took the position of editor two years later, which he held for over four decades. The current editor is Scott Wayne. It is currently the longest-running in-house publication in the electronics industry.
In 1985, Sega's third-person rail shooter game Space Harrier, released for the arcades, introduced an analog flight stick for movement. It could register movement in any direction as well as measure the degree of push, which could move the player character at different speeds depending on how far the joystick is pushed in a certain direction.
Sega's analog Mission Stick was released for the Saturn console on September 29, 1995. On April 26, 1996, Sony released a potentiometer-based analog joystick for use in Flight-Simulation games. The Sony Dual Analog FlightStick featured twin analog sticks and was used in games such as Descent to provide a much greater degree of freedom than the typical digital joysticks of the day.
The first consumer games console which had analog joysticks was the Prinztronic/Acetronic/Interton series, launched in 1976. This system was widely cloned throughout Europe and available under several brand names. The 2 sticks each used a pair of potentiometers, but were not self-centering.
In its early years, ANALOG Computing also sold games via mail order under the name ANALOG Software. Most of these were written by magazine staff members. Some games were never completed or published, such as Sunday Driver.
On April 25, 1997, Sony introduced the world's first dual stick controller for its game console, PlayStation. Based on the same potentiometer technology that was used in the larger Dual Analog Flightstick, the Sony Dual Analog Controller featured rumble, three modes of analog (Flightstick, Full Analog and Analog-Off), and dual plastic concave thumbsticks.
In 1989, the Japanese company Dempa released an analog thumbstick controller for the Sega Mega Drive console and Japanese computers called the XE-1 AP. This new controller included a thumb-operated control stick which allowed for varying levels of movement and near-360-degree control, translating into far more precise movements than were possible with a D-pad. It also distinguished itself by having the player control it with the thumb, similar to a D-pad, rather than gripping a handle.
Analog computing devices are fast, digital computing devices are more versatile and accurate, so the idea is to combine the two processes for the best efficiency. An example of such hybrid elementary device is the hybrid multiplier where one input is an analog signal, the other input is a digital signal and the output is analog. It acts as an analog potentiometer upgradable digitally. This kind of hybrid technique is mainly used for fast dedicated real time computation when computing time is very critical as signal processing for radars and generally for controllers in embedded systems.
Other computing elements include analog multipliers, nonlinear function generators, and analog comparators.
The largest manufacturer of hybrid computers was Electronics Associates. Their hybrid computer model 8900 was made of a digital computer and one or more analog consoles. These systems were mainly dedicated to large projects such as the Apollo program and Space Shuttle at NASA, or Ariane in Europe, especially during the integration step where at the beginning everything is simulated, and progressively real components replace their simulated part.
Integrating with respect to another variable is the nearly exclusive province of mechanical analog integrators; it is almost never done in electronic analog computers. However, given that a problem solution does not change with time, time can serve as one of the variables.
Analog multiplication can be accomplished by using the Hall Effect.
Electronic analog computers typically have front panels with numerous jacks (single-contact sockets) that permit patch cords (flexible wires with plugs at both ends) to create the interconnections which define the problem setup. In addition, there are precision high-resolution potentiometers (variable resistors) for setting up (and, when needed, varying) scale factors. In addition, there is likely to be a zero-center analog pointer-type meter for modest-accuracy voltage measurement. Stable, accurate voltage sources provide known magnitudes.