Facebook's Acquilla drone completes its second flight without damage
Facebook is undoubtedly the largest network in the world. But, from a famous saying from Spider-Man, "With great power comes great responsibility", the Web Monolith has some considerable responsibility on its shoulders. Not only does it need to connect the world and make them a common platform for communication, it also has to solve the connectivity problem for the next billion users who will be online. The interesting thing about these next billion users is that they will be using smartphones mostly online and will be from developing regions. In the same light, Facebook has taken on some very ambitious projects to help connect users to the Internet's next.
Such an ambitious project happens to be Aquilla. Aquilla is a solar-powered drone capable of connecting unreached areas where the internet is beaming. Facebook boasts the fact that the Aquilla is extremely energy efficient, running the equivalent of 3 blow molding machines worth the power. This week marked yet another milestone for the Acquilla, which completed its second successful flight. On this second flight, it flew a total of one hour and 46 minutes. Facebook is detailed in a blog post, and you can check out all the details of the flight here. It also mentions Latest Mailing Database modifications made to the drone after initial trials failed. In its first test, a 20-foot section of the wing had snapped off. This time the social network adds hundreds of sensors to collect more data, a new and improved autopilot software, a Horizon propeller stop mechanism, successful landings and spoiler wings. Facebook said the company had learned from the failure of the first flight and proposed several iterations to improve on its second. It's worth mentioning that Acquilla was conceptualized by Mark Zuckerberg in 2014 as a possible way to make the internet functional for people, which is his goal to have it in a few years.
Apple iPhone to 10
And the iPhone will always be the most important piece of technology of our generation. Not only did it open us to the era of smartphones, it also revolutionized the way we communicate. And the iPhone is indeed a revolution both in hardware and software. When Steve Jobs took the stage 10 years ago to unveil the original iPhone, people were a little skeptical. After all, this is the first time anyone has attempted to replace a keyboard with a touchscreen. The iPhone introduced by Steve is just as amazing. Perhaps there is indeed such an argument as the hidden pinch of the lure, but the iPhone is nothing short of a magical device, and it is. This week, the iPhone turned 10 years old and there are some bittersweet memories that users have had with the iPhone. And the iPhone was the first device that introduced apps to the world. As we know, the world is eaten by apps. Well, it all started because of the iPhone.
And the iPhone killed the concept of a phone because we knew it. Looking back at the original iPhone, it barely lived up to its internet connectivity requirements. It's slow without third-party apps and data, and it's limited to AT&T's slow edge connection. Even Safari is useful for miles away by any proximity. But with the journey of ten years in place, Apple managed to pull together and build the perfect product from a hardware and software standpoint. Android's incredible success has certainly put billions of dollars in smartphones in hand globally, but it's the iPhone that started the trend to truly put the internet in your pocket, the first device.
Apple releases first public beta for macOS High Sierra
A few weeks ago, Apple took to the stage in San Jose at WWDC 2017 to announce some exciting new iterations of the platform, one of which happened to be a new version of macOS, which it unexpectedly called macOS High Sierra (really Apple?). It brings a significantly enhanced number of OS SANS to any major visual overhaul. Most of the changes are internal. To name a few changes to macOS High Sierra, which is supposed to be replaced by HFS+ as the new default filesystem APF. Before installing the new MacOS, you must stick to HFS+, otherwise your drive of choice will be upgraded to an active power filter.
It sounds like a scary process, but Apple has had little trouble upgrading, and millions of iOS devices perform APF so if you're running on standard Apple hardware, it should be a breeze to migrate to the new filesystem . Other important features on macOS Shanghai Isera include support for VR and external GPUs and the new HEVC and HIEF video and image formats, which will also ship with the brand new iOS Metal 2 graphics API. Other small improvements come in Safari, Photos, and Siri. However, this is mostly a high-tech version of our foundation. The best part? Beta Joe is available for you to try out.
Dubai Police have recruited robot cars to scan unwanted people
Dubai Police are known to be one of the most high-tech in the world, showing off supercars like Lamborghini and BMW teams and it's clear that they're not resisting in keeping their tech talk nicks. Well, by the end of the year, Dubai's police force will have a new recruit patrolling the streets, self-driving cars acting as mobile surveillance units. The car is equipped with a 360-degree camera that scans the wanted and unwanted using facial recognition technology. The robot is built by Singapore-based startup OTSAW Digital and its official name is Built-OR.
The company said Dubai will be the first city in the world to use the O-R3 for daily patrols. Note that the robot is not here to replace the human police, but to perform tasks in a low-level order. The O-R3 can automatically charge itself, and is equipped with a vehicle-mounted drone to follow the individual where the robot cannot drive. The introduction of -OR is to be expected. Dubai says it wants 25% of its police force to be robots by 2030.
Instagram is now using AI to block vulgar comments
Online abuse is a real problem, and we're constantly covering the issues that relate to it. These days Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Snapchat are the hottest destinations on the internet and they are sure to see a lot of traction. But they also see the most online complaints about harassment and abuse. This week's Instagram introduced a new AI system to thwart offensive opinions.
It employs machine learning to identify situations that seem offensive to the system, giving the system some ability to potentially capture worse comments, and at the same time cut down on false positive comments, taking into account responses. Another notable change is that Instagram is turned on by default on the Offensive Comments filter, the sooner you have to turn the filter on yourself. The filter is only available in English at launch, but Instagram says it's working on extending it to other languages over time. Instagram also announced an AI-powered spam filtering system today, too. The spam filter has been secretly in place since October last year, but it was only revealed today. Since no one has noticed this in the past nine months, the filter probably doesn't block too many comments, it shouldn't. The filter is active in nine languages, including English.
Uber completes 500 million travel smoke and rain scandal
Uber has been facing a lot of heat in its work culture lately. Because of this, CEO Travis Kalanick stepped down and the company is now leaderless. But amidst all these issues the company managed to complete its 5 billion journey this week. This comes less than a year after the company has completed 2 billion rides.