(As for the rest of us, we find your lack of faith disturbing.)Loving Star Wars can be misunderstood as simplistic: the love of a sci-fi trilogy – of Empire aside – debatable greatness, and a prequel trilogy infamous in its mediocrity.I remember adoring the Knights Of The Old Republic games with their sheer volume of lore: wise-cracking robots, sleek spaceships piloted by brave rogues, traitorous Sith Lords.And it’s being a kid with my friends, our imaginations fired by a galaxy far, far away."Leia was a role model – a strong lady who doesn't take any BS and leads an army to freedom.me interested in SF which is a big passion to this day, and it got me to bond with my father.
Google, not being particularly amenable to letting other robots into your life has unveiled its own version, Home.Just by speaking, you can order an Uber, play Spotify, set alarms or just ask questions.Duo, meanwhile, is quite simply Google's answer to FaceTime or Skype, allowing internet video calls.Both are coming for iOS and Android in the summer.Google's next software operating system update for smartphones and tablets, codenamed Android N, has been released as a developer previewThe new system will be named after a tasty treat, and could be called Nerds, Nutella or NougatNew features include split-app multitasking, the ability to reply to messages from within a notification and increased battery efficiencyGoogle has been dipping its toes in low-end VR with Google Cardboard for a couple of years, but is stepping up by bringing it to Android N.A new feature called Daydream will allow certain phones to up their performance to deliver VR, and Google is releasing a Play Store, Street View and YouTube for VR.Google is also thinking beyond the limitations of Cardboard, and has produced a blueprint for a headset which it will share with third-parties, alongside a natty little controller reminiscent of the Siri-powered pointer Apple unveiled alongside the latest Apple TV last year.
Unlike the Greek sorceress it resembles in name, Midea Group 000333 -2.06 % doesn t have to be a prophet to realize it can no longer rest on cheap Chinese labor and low-end technology.That s why this top Chinese appliance manufacturer is willing to splash out for a German robotics giant.The offer looks unsolicited, suggesting Midea wants Kuka more than the other way around.Part of this is the natural result of China s rising wages in the past five years, especially in well-off Guangdong province, where Midea is based.That s richer than the 28 times a basket of 13 global peers trade at, and far richer than Midea s own 10 times.For investors who can access Midea s mainland Chinese shares, the stock could rally as Midea signals its intent to improve its technology.
Benjamin Stahl Photographer: Fredrik Karlsson Swedish industry has a good position when it comes to robotics. But it required a serious effort to retain the position, according to a new report. In 2015 there were 1.5 million industrial roots in use worldwide compared to one million in 2009, an increase of 50 percent in five years. The rapid development of sensors have influenced and robots have become smarter, smaller, easier to use - and yet cheaper. - But the development has not been driven by the traditional robot suppliers but rather by large companies like Google, Amazon and Apple actually been more interested in artificial intelligence, says Benjamin Stahl, research director at Blue institute with the recent report robots century. But now growing faster robot use in other countries - particularly in Asia.
Machines, after all, can perform many manufacturing tasks more efficiently, effectively and consistently than humans, leading to increased output, better quality and less waste.SeongJoon Cho/Bloomberg via Getty Images Of the more than 229,000 industrial robots sold in 2014 the most recent statistics available , more than 57,000 were sold to Chinese manufacturers, 29,300 to Japanese companies, 26,200 to companies in the U.S., 24,700 to South Koreans and more than 20,000 to German companies.The basic economic trade-off between the cost of labor and the cost of automation is the primary consideration.AP Photo/Kin Cheung Other countries that have been rapidly integrating robotics into manufacturing, but not quite as quickly, are Canada, China, Japan, Russia, the U.K. and the U.S. China is an interesting case because it s automating rapidly despite the fact that Chinese wages are still comparatively low.Countries moving more slowly in the adoption of industrial robotics include Australia, the Czech Republic, Germany, Mexico and Poland.German Chancellor Angela Merkel shakes hands with a robot at an industrial fair in 2006 alongside Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.
LONDON— ARM Holdings ARMH 3.16 % PLC, the England-based tech firm that designs most of the world s smartphone chips, said Wednesday that it completed a $350 million acquisition of a computer-vision company, in a bet that it can further ARM s goal of getting its technology into new markets such as automobiles, robots and everyday household items.For example, its technology can help a security camera distinguish between a human and cat.Founded in 2002, Apical employs 100 people.As the growth in global smartphone shipments slows—ARM expects an annual increase of 6% to 7% for the next five years—the company has diversified.It can automatically transmit live video to the homeowner whenever it detects motion, but that would take up a lot of power and bandwidth.Based in Cambridge, England, ARM is regarded as one of the U.K. s top tech firms.
Dealing with obstacles is an inevitable part of life, and it looks like robots may be surprisingly adept at applying creativity to the challenge.Researchers from Carnegie Mellon University developed software that not only helped a robot deal efficiently with clutter but also revealed considerable creativity in solving problems.In one case, the robot, officially named the Home Exploring Robot Butler, used the crook of its arm to cradle an object to be moved.That's great in relatively clutter-free locations like factory production lines, but not so much in homes -- or on distant planets.It can also be taught to pay attention to items that might be valuable or delicate.Currently, CMU's algorithm forges ahead full-bore with any plan it makes, but work is under way to help it make corrections along the way.
Caption: Mineralbad BBStephan ZirwesRelated GalleriesAlways Moving?This Modular Furniture Is Easy to Take ApartDreamy Photos That Will Put Your Instagram Filters to Shame$30K Retrofit Turns Dumb Semis Into Self-Driving RobotsThis Trippy Looking Building Is Modeled After a Sand DollarMeet the Garden Designer Who Transformed Rio de JaneiroStephan Zirwes has a thing for aerial photography.He loves seeing the patterns in mundane places like golf courses, soccer fields and swimming pools.Pools often have nice structures and sometimes also strange designs, he says.Revealing these designs required caaaaarefully shooting his Hasseblad 50Mp from the window of a helicopter hovering 1,000 feet above pools in cities throughout southern Germany.Zirwes uses Photoshop to eliminate distractions like buildings and make a patterned frame of the surrounding title, transforming an ordinary swimming pool into a lovely minimalist scene.
Holding up the joy end were two magnificent follies: a man managed to get stupid single-button-pressing game Flappy Bird to play on the screen of an e-cigarette, and someone else installed Windows 95 on an Apple Watch.But in that same month we also lost seminal British development studio Lionhead.Electronic Arts, another well-meaning but lethal behemoth, has acquired and inadvertently milked to death nearly a dozen smaller studios in the last two decades, from SimCity developer Maxis to Westwood, maker of the once-great Command & Conquer series.And so it went with Lionhead, whose focus shifted from enthusiastic creativity to churning out new iterations of Fable, the final version of which has now been canned along with the company that made it.It uses the touchscreen to excellent effect as you monitor a bank of CCTV cameras to defend your base against hordes of incoming robots.The other widely maligned multiplayer beta this month was Gears Of War 4, a similarly hoary old beast whose clunky controls, unbalanced weapons and muddy colour scheme left players hoping that its remaining six months of development will trigger a rescue operation.
Henry HarrisRelated GalleriesHeavenly Aerials of Pools Will Send You Right Into SummerAlways Moving?This Modular Furniture Is Easy to Take ApartDreamy Photos That Will Put Your Instagram Filters to Shame$30K Retrofit Turns Dumb Semis Into Self-Driving RobotsMeet the Garden Designer Who Transformed Rio de JaneiroOn the third floor of Arup Global Acoustics office in Lower Manhattan is a small, fabric-enclosed space that looks and feels like a cocoon.The company line is that the SoundLab creates virtual sonic environments to help architects improve the acoustics of their buildings.We re using the data to help you feel, says Raj Patel, Principal at Arup Global Acoustics.To make it work, engineers build a computer model of a building or space and then map a web of measurements called impulse responses that create an acoustic signature.Patel and his colleagues are coordinating with researchers to recreate sensations of light, touch, temperature, and even smell.
May has been a big month for personal robotics.So keep tabs on your parents and grandparents: they could be cyborgs one day.The suit works a little like an image stabilizer in a camera.There are some actuators in the belt that detect shaky movements.The team even received $2.9 million in funding from DARPA, the US government's futuristic technology arm, to develop the suit so that soldiers on the field would suffer less from muscle cramps.The researchers hope eventually the suit will mimic natural skin to the point where you can pretty much slip it on before you put actual clothes on.In the video above, though, you'll see that the robotic suit is more in the middle of the road between being the clunky power-walking suits Hyundai made and actual clothes.In the past few years, engineers have been making strides toward building robotic walking suits that would give paralyzed patients the ability to move again.This obsession with restoring limb function has led to things like mind-controlled arms and printable hands, among many other life-changing advances in prosthetics.Soon enough, these people won't have to worry about looking like robots — it'll just be like putting on a second skin.Read the original article on Tech Insider.More from Tech Insider:Take a tour of London's new super-sleek train systemGoogle just released a new messaging app that lets you do much more than send messages GOOG There's a secret Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle Airbnb in NYC you can rent for freeGoogle just announced its Amazon Echo competitorA war is brewing between brands and the social media 'influencers' they payNOW WATCH: A hair scientist debunks the biggest myth about shavingLoading video...
Apical's computer vision in actionARM Holdings, the British microchip company whose designs power the iPhone, has looked to a future beyond the smartphone, buying a computer vision company whose technology allows cars, cameras and robots to see the world around them.ARM announced has paid $350m £240m to acquire Apical, a Loughborough-based designer of imaging processors.ARM designs the low-power processors that feature in almost all smartphones and tablets around the world, but as these markets reach maturity, it has extended its ambitions into other areas.Computer vision is in the early stages of development and the world of devices powered by this exciting technology can only grow from here, ARM s chief executive Simon Segars said.Shares have fallen 9pc since the start of the year, during which time Apple has reported its first-ever decline in iPhone sales.The company's shares rose by 1.6pc on Wednesday after the deal was announced.
Project Mainstream is global project targeting areas of sustainability thwarted by complexities such as e-waste, using a circular economy model.One example, IBM is working to keep industrial products in continuous loops to maximize residual value and ensure that end-of-lease and client-owned IT equipment is refurbished, resold, disassembled or sold as parts, to be used for repair and maintenance work.The fishermen, many of whom are unable to read or write, are being trained to use the smartphones and are being provided with local charging facilities.The research is being led by CSIRO and aims to improve honey bee pollination and productivity on farms, as well as help understand the drivers of bee Colony Collapse Disorder CCD , a condition decimating honey bee populations worldwide.Using proprietary algorithms, TreeTAG generates a one-time code that captures precise data on the potential maximum yield of each tree, as well as the species, time, date, and exact location where each tree is felled.In Italy, researchers at SUNRISE are also working to enable seas, lakes and rivers to be digital highways for data transfer from sensors, robots, and underwater vehicles capable of performing tasks too dangerous for humans.
This year's Google IO developers conference had both a brand new mostly-outdoor venue and a rather brightly-colored surprise.Paint colors and actions are selected by users like yourself with a smartphone app dedicated to said actions.The robot itself is not strictly new - there've been robots like these dedicated to painting devices and vehicles for a number of years now.The robot and the rotating block on which the white cube sat were controlled separately.We've got to applaud the people who proposed this display for Google I/O, imagining the meeting at which that took place.We'd love to give you credit as this is, indeed, a place where credit is due.
Images: V MuseumLondon s Victoria & Albert Museum has unveiled an incredibly intricate robotically woven and biologically inspired carbon-fiber pavilion in its courtyard.Each panel is made from a combination of transparent glass fiber and black carbon fiber, woven into a structure inspired by a beetle s forewing—known as elytra, hence the structure s name, Elytra Filament Pavilion.The panels weigh around 100 pounds each.The installation is the brainchild of experimental architect Achim Menges, along with collaborators Moritz Dörstelmann, Jan Knippers and Thomas Auer.One of those robots will sit within the courtyard during the course of the exhibition.While in situ, it will create new elements that can be added to the structure based on real-time sensed data.
Road User Protection, Tesla capital and robotics researchers. Google is working since long with self-driving cars will be safer than human drivers. If an accident does occur, the company has now patented a technique where a hit person detained on the car, read more about the "human flugpappret" on Io9. Apple is investing heavily in India and will recruit 4,000 developers to its office in Hyderabad, it writes The Next Web. Tesla is gearing up to bring in new capital to fund the production of new Model 3, read more on Techchrunch. Robot scientist Hajimi Asama, who this week visited Stockholm, asking for access to robots that can make the response to disasters.
Having constructed four different Valkyrie robots, the space agency has kept one at its birthplace, the Johnson Space Center in Houston.For one thing, the tiny holes which prevent Val from overheating could get clogged by spiraling Martian dust.If not the Valkyries, it will be their descendants serving as the android vanguard which could make human life on Mars possible."Given the positions of Earth and Mars, these pre-deployment missions will take place only every two years," says Taskin Padir, a professor at Northeastern University.A time delay between communications from Earth to Mars means humans won't be able to remote-control robots which will be required to build structures and do emergency repair work."Obviously one can argue that we can have a human to teleoperate this robot and perform tasks," says Padir.
Get your sea captain's hat and harpoon at the ready, Far Harbor is the latest and biggest DLC in the Fallout 4 universe and it's ready to play today.Bethesda released the add-on at midnight and it's looking like the island adds a huge area to explore, with new weapons, armour, monsters and quests to fill out.To get started, download the DLC separately, then go to the Fallout 4 add-on menu to check it's there.Load up the game, and as long as you've done a Nick Valentine quest 'Getting a clue', you'll be able to receive the pipboy notification that'll start you off.Watch lead developers talk us through what to expect, here:We attempted to re-create some of our favourite movie robots in Fallout 4 Automatron
AllChinaTech recently talked with Tomotaka Takahashi, a robot creator and founder of Kyoto University s ROBO GARAGE.Inspired by the cartoon Astro Boy, Takahashi wanted to become a robotics scientist from the age of five.He started making his own robots as a university student.Robots that Takahashi has created include Mr. Evolta that climbed a Grand Canyon cliff within seven hours, rescue robot Enryu T-52 that can lift cars or other debris in the aftermath of a disaster, Ropid that can jump and run in a smooth and natural manner, and Kirobo , that acted as a Japanese-speaking companion on the international space station.Takahashi said that the shape and form of robots will become increasingly important.He would create prototypes by himself to help people understand robots possibilities and potential.Takashi s latest project is RoBoHon, literally meaning robot phone .In Takahashi s words, a cute little buddy that stands under 20cm tall.Additionally, he pointed out that there is little room for innovation in the smartphone industry nowadays, with most products looking alike.Takahashi wants to create a new era, where people live with robots like they are living with smartphones today.Top photo from Baidu Images
Subsidies are harder to get and Chinese labor is not tolerating the abuse that it once did.It clearly saw a large market opportunity and a way to appease the Chinese government.These robots cost less than $40,000 to purchase and as little as a dollar per hour to operate.In 2015, the supply chain for Apple s products consisted of 198 global companies with 759 subsidiaries — so this is quite complex.The largest proportion, 32.7 percent, were Japanese; 28.5 percent were American; 19.0 percent were Taiwanese; and 6.5 percent were European.To put it simply, more than half of the components of Apple s products are imported into China and practically none of the important, core, technologies are made by Chinese companies.