Marc Leonard

Marc Leonard

Followers 9
Following 16
US
If you know anything about me, you know that I'm all about saving time and making tech more efficient.And one thing that can always use a potent productivity booster-shot is the act of inputting text from our mobile devices.We've indeed talked about the time wasted with smartphone text input before — not that long ago, in fact, when we were getting into the subject of macros and advanced text substitution.As of this week, though, there's an even easier way to create and use templates for common phone-based responses, and it's built right into one of my favorite messaging apps.With Pulse, you can view and access your messages from practically any device imaginable, including multiple Android phones and tablets as well as desktop computers.Your messages are always synced and available anywhere you sign in, and it's as easy to see or send a text from your laptop as it is from your phone.
US
Imagine wafer-thin eyeglasses or a smartphone camera so small it is invisible to the naked eye.Imagine an aerodynamic sensor that can conform to the exact slope and angle of a jet airplane wing.These visions of future technologies emerge from a technical paper titled "Inverse-designed broadband all-dielectric electromagnetic metadevices" published online today in Scientific Reports.The Northwestern University team used inverse design principles and a basic 3D printer purchased from Amazon -- technologies not commonly used in their field-- to create highly efficient, non-resonant, broadband metadevices at millimeter-wave frequencies that could prove revolutionary for consumer products, defense, and telecommunications, including next-generation 5G wireless networks."I feel like we're really on the verge of something big," said Koray Aydin, assistant professor of electrical engineering and computer science at the McCormick School of Engineering, who is leading the research efforts in inverse-designed metadevices.Using computer modeling, optimization software and complex algorithms, the team set out to build metadevices that could bend or focus millimeter waves but that avoided problems with conventional approaches, such low efficiency, narrow bandwidth and the bulkiness of the devices.
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UK
Theresa May is facing a showdown with her own MPs over her Brexit deal, with 75% of Tories wanting freedom of movement to end immediately after the UK leaves the EU.In her landmark speech in Florence in September last year, the Prime Minister confirmed she would seek an “implementation period” with the EU after Brexit day – March 29 2019 – which would see the UK continue to trade with the bloc on “current terms”.If that agreement was carried through, freedom of movement would continue during the implementation period, as would jurisdiction of the European Court of Justice (ECJ).A survey of MPs carried out in the months after the speech revealed that three-quarters of Tories think it would be unacceptable for freedom of movement to continue during a transition period, while 63% oppose the ECJ having jurisdiction in the UK after March 2019.With May only staying in power thanks to a deal with the DUP, backbench influence over Government thinking has arguably never been stronger.One leading Tory who has already spoken out against freedom of movement continuing as it is is Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson.
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China
Regulatory filings reveal that Carousell has secured at least US$45.3 million in funding since its series B round in August 2016.Filings with Singapore’s Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority indicate that EDBI, the VC arm of the city-state’s Economic Development Board, is among the company’s new backers.The online classifieds site generated US$10 million in revenue last year, a significant increase from the US$6.4 million it made a year earlier.Quikr’s acquisitions of startups in real estate, hyperlocal services, and online job search have contributed to this revenue growth, accounting for up to 55 percent of the company’s income last year.The online platform for health insurers and patients secured funds from China’s Haitao Capital and US accelerator SOSV, in addition to a several other investors.It will use the money to expand to Southeast Asia, as well as for tech and business development.
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UK
CEO and CFO in crosshairs after shareholder lossesAMD stands accused of "artificially inflating" its stock price by not making public a CPU design flaw the tech world now knows as Spectre, according to a class-action lawsuit brought by investors.Yesterday's filing in the Northern District of California court stated: "As a result of Defendants' wrongful acts and omissions, and the precipitous decline in the market value of the Company's common shares, Plaintiff and other Class members have suffered significant losses and damages."This comes in the wake of several similar legal bombs thrown at rival Intel – also class-action suits brought by disgruntled stockholders.Intel has a quartet of lawsuits vying for the attention of its lawyers, and AMD is – for the moment – saddled with just the one.The period in question is between 21 February 2017, the day AMD filed its 2016 end-of-year financial statement, and 11 January this year, when the company made an official response to the reports of the flaws.
US
Tuesday, January 16th, 2018, Baltimore, MD - Insilico Medicine, a Baltimore-based next-generation artificial intelligence company specializing in the application of deep learning for drug discovery, announces the presentation of Polina Mamoshina, Senior Research Scientist involved in multiple deep learning projects at the Pharmaceutical Artificial Intelligence division of Insilico Medicine, at 5th annual Advanced Pharma Analytics Europe Summit, January 31, 2018.The presentation will cover the recent advances in the applications of generative adversarial networks (GANs) for new molecules development in drug discovery.The fundamental principle of GANs is adversarial training based on game theory results: competition between the Generative and Discriminative networks leads to joint evolution and almost perfect results."It is a privilege for me to speak alongside the leaders in the industry at the 5th annual Advanced Pharma Analytics event.Technologies based on AI have a great potential to change drug discovery process dramatically mainly by speeding it up introducing a limited amount of highly promising molecules instead of thousands with unknown activities and possibly increase the drug space, finding new drugs, a new mechanism of action, new chemistry", said Polina Mamoshina, Senior Research Scientist in Insilico Medicine, Inc."Generative adversarial networks (GANs) revolutionised deep learning and found its applications in several areas, including realistic image synthesis, text-to-image synthesis or even animating movie, etc Vast amounts of data collected within pharmaceutical industry can be utilised to build similar models.
China
ZUK Mobile CEO, shared an image of an unidentified Lenovo phone on their Weibo account.This post has now sparked rumors surrounding the existence of a ZUK branded smartphone.The leaked image shows a Lenovo branded phone with a glossy back.Last year, Lenovo decided to completely scrap the ZUK line of smartphones.The ZUK Edge was the last phone to be released under the brand.Just a few months after the shutdown, Chang Cheng, Vice President, Lenovo Group, said that the ZUK Z3 is in the works.
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US
Users on the Google Product Forums have reported that the Google Home Max smart speaker is crashing certain Wi-Fi networks.As of right now, the reports of crashes appear to be limited to users of the TP-Link Archer C7 router.Users of this router have reported recurring some serious connectivity issues when the Google Home Max is online.Users say that the problems begin as soon as the Google Home Max is connected to a network using the Archer C7.So far, it only appears to affect networks using this combination of Archer C7 router and the Google Home Max.TP-Link has placed the blame on the MDNS packets, which keep the Google Home Max connected to the router.
UK
GM has revealed its new self-driving car, the Cruise AV, which the automaker says is the first production-ready autonomous vehicle.The fourth generation of GM‘s Cruise AV driverless car, it’s even more of a departure from what you’ll currently find on the automaker’s dealership forecourts.That’s because it has no steering wheel and no pedals: indeed, no manual driving controls whatsoever.In an image of the dashboard – and the video below – you can see the somewhat unsettling result.The Cruise AV is based on the Chevrolet Bolt EV electric car, but the dash looks like it has been mirrored in photoshop.Gone is the wheel, the digital instrumentation panel, and the pedals; there’s no shifter or stalks for turn-signals.
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UK
From technology companies who are finally starting to own their responsibility, to the rest of us saying goodbye to boring hardware—here are five design trends we’d like to see more of this year.Technology companies prefer to seal their handy work inside a black box as a way to protect IP and keep the user-friendly magic of “it just works” intact.DARPA has a program committed to researching machine learning techniques that allow models to explain their decision-making.There’s still a long way to go before AI is actually able to walk the average person through its rationale in a way they can understand, but the push for algorithmic transparency is something all technology companies—especially those whose business models depend on harnessing user data (ahem, social media)—should be thinking about in the coming year.Facebook is finding out the hard way that obscuring its algorithms can lead to disastrous results, like it did in the 2016 election.Shedding light on how algorithms make their decisions will assuage the anxiety that people feel about new—and existing— technology.
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UK
Big TVs, self-driving cars, slick laptops, and more smart home gadgetry than your WiFi can handle.CES 2018 brings the latest, greatest, (and often the oddest) technology to Las Vegas every year, and each year we pick our favorite products for our big “Best in Show” awards.Read on for the full list…Best of CES 2018 – Mercedes-Benz MBUXAutomotive news continues to grow in prevalence at CES, with some of the biggest names in the industry choosing to make their announcements in Las Vegas rather than wait it out a week for the Detroit auto show.Mercedes went one step even further, unveiled no mere concept but, in the shape of Mercedes-Benz MBUX, its new infotainment system that’s headed to production cars.
US
This past fall, media software maker Plex expanded its service with the integration of a dedicated news hub within its app — a feature that arrived by way of its acquisition of streaming news startup, Watchup.Now the company is preparing to move into other verticals that will further complement its software for organizing home media, and streaming and recording live TV from a digital antenna.What makes the integration potentially more interesting is that, along with Watchup’s partnerships and deals in the news media space, the startup also brought to Plex its own recommendation technology, designed to help people find the news they want to watch.For example, if Plex knows you watch or record a particular TV program, it could recommend a podcast — perhaps one of those “after-shows” — that you also might like.This is a large ambition — and one that will take years to fully realize.A small, and still undisclosed, portion of its 15 million registered users is paying for a premium subscription, the Plex Pass, which adds more advanced features to the Plex experience.
US
Last year TCL's P series was the best 55-inch TV for the money and its successor, the 2018 6 series, looks even better.It keeps everything that made the P series great, namely full-array local dimming, compatibility with both HDR10 and Dolby Vision HDR formats, and Roku's excellent Smart TV system.Local dimming, which illuminates different areas (zones) of the screen independently, is one of the best ways to improve LCD image quality.TCL has upped the number of local dimming zones to 96 on the 55-inch version of the 6-series and a whopping 120 zones on the 65-incher.Compare that to Vizio's M series, one of our favorite TVs of 2017, which only had 32 zones.More local dimming zones usually mean better image quality because they allow more precise control of screen lighting.
US
Debating is at the core of a robust society — as are online social networks.With products today, we are either living in an echo chamber of like-minded people who agree with us all the time, or we’re duking it out in trench warfare format for little gain and few opinions changed.The product, which officially launched its debate platform app on the App Store today, uses short presidential debate-style videos to elevate the discussion around controversial topics.The idea is that it is too easy to troll on traditional social networks, not to mention that bot networks can quickly devolve interesting debates.By emphasizing video in its product, Micgoat’s goal is to persuade people to talk to one another in a more human way, reducing the disinhibition effect that comes from posting text online.The app is the brainchild of Justin Zhen and Gregory Ugwi, the co-founders of Thinknum, a New York-based financial data and analysis platform, along with Marta Lopata, who joined the company last year and is now Micgoat’s CEO.
UK
Alton Towers has licensed a film to make a ride out of.There's nothing too unusual about this, until you learn what film they're using.There's going to be a Wicker Man rollercoaster, complete with massive burning effigy.To make this sound even more bonkers a proposition, Alton Towers says it's building the ride out of wood, combining the Holy Trinity of personal injury — wood, fire and rides — into one genuinely terrifying proposition.The 58-foot tall wicker man effigy will appear to burn as passengers fly past it on the new £16m ride, with the first passengers due to be ferried around this spring.Bradley Wynne from Alton Towers said: "We hope visitors will be blown away by Wicker Man's breath-taking scale whilst the primal essence of the wooden coaster and astonishing effects will leave them delighted, exhilarated and eager to ride again."
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UK
Tesla founder and chief executive Elon Musk has continued his Twitter trend of offering up unique ideas for buyers of his electric cars.This time, Musk has tweeted that he wants to build an old-fashioned drive-in diner - complete with roller-skating waitresses - for Tesla owners who need to charge their car.Drive up to the charging station, juice up your car and have a burger while you are waiting.Twitter users were stuck debating whether or not Musk was meaning a drive-in theatre or just a drive-in restaurant.In response, he said there could be both.The movie screen would show "a highlight reel of the best scenes in movie history", he said.
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US
Netatmo wants you to interact with your smart home through Facebook Messenger and Netatmo's own Smart Home Bot.Netatmo's Smart Home Bot is a free chatbot available exclusively through Facebook's Messenger service, ready to respond to your queries whether you're home or away.Many of the company's home security and climate and weather monitoring devices already integrate with Siri, Alexa and Google Assistant.Now, Netatmo says, it's expanding to Facebook's messaging service -- to allow for "greater mobility and privacy."In places where you either can't -- or wouldn't want to use voice commands -- instead type out questions to the Smart Home Bot.Ask it about the current weather, who's at home or even instruct it to turn on lights.
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US
We’ve got more and more devices these days that rely on Wi-Fi, whether they’re cellphones, laptops, or something in between.With the increase of all these new technological tools, the need for more reliable and faster wireless networks has become very important.Intel recently made an announcement that it is readying new chips for what will be the next generation of Wi-Fi.In 2018, Intel is going to make its home Wi-Fi portfolio larger with its new 802.11ax chips.With these new chips comes a whole host of upgrades and improvements from the predecessor, 802.11ac.The 802.11ax chips should be able to offer up to 40 percent higher peak data rates for an individual device, which means a change from 433Mbps to 600Mbps.
US
Hobbits, fairies, Dr. Septimus Pretorius’ people in bell jars—Hollywood has been miniaturizing things in movies for decades.But ever since Pretorius put ballerinas and kings behind glass in Bride of Frankenstein in 1935, filmmakers have used many different methods to make people appear small onscreen.Back in the 1930s, it was done by filming two different sets of shots that were composited together.By the time Steven Spielberg made Hook in 1991, visual effects artists were able to use composites and blue-screen tech to place Julia Roberts’ Tinkerbell in the movie.Now, like with Alexander Payne’s Downsizing, directors and their effects departments can use everything from green-screen technology to rotoscoping to make humans look much smaller than they really are.“I think what’s most exciting about the trajectory that visual effects technology has taken is how much freedom filmmakers have now,” says Jamie Price, who handled the VFX for Downsizing.
US
The last time scientists got a good look at half the Earth in far ultraviolet light came in 1972, when astronaut John Young snapped some photos with a special camera during a spare moment of the Apollo 16 mission to the Moon.Since then, heliophysicists and other scientists interested in the complicated interplay between Earth’s upper atmosphere and outer space have suffered from a paucity of data.That should finally change later this year, after two NASA-sponsored satellites begin to collect data about the composition and temperature of the ionosphere, ranging from an altitude of about 60km above Earth to more than 1,000km.Scientists used to think the Sun’s radiation dominated the Earth’s extremely tenuous atmosphere at this altitude, but in the last decade they have begun to understand that weather at the planet’s surface also can change conditions far above.“We’d really like to be able tease out the effects from the Sun above and the Earth below,” said Sarah Jones, a mission scientist with the GOLD (Global-Scale Observations of the Limb and Disk) mission that is scheduled to launch later this month.She and other mission scientists spoke this week during a NASA briefing.
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