Daily Report: A Net Neutrality Setback for Facebook in India
In the United States, the social media giant has been an advocate of equal treatment of all Internet content. In India, regulators who share that belief have effectively blocked a free Facebook service.
Amazon reveals an Alexa-powered microwave, in-car Echo device
Amazon announced a whole mess of hardware today, including several new smart speakers and devices to add smarts to your existing speakers. Rounding things out are some new devices for around your home and in your car.
Google launched note-taking app “Keep” back in 2013, and the company has been updating the app to make it one of the more worthwhile options on Android ever since. But the app’s biggest change to date is happening right now.
Acer's Value Lab and its subsidiary International Smart Union (ISU) have jointly provided AI (artificial intelligent)-based hardware/software solutions for a daytime care center for the elderly established by government-sponsored Taipei Veterans General Hospital, according to ISU chairman Maverick Shih.
US and Europe equipment vendors have reduced investment and R&D efforts for the PV sector in the wake shrinking demand from China, and instead are focusing more on the semiconductor sector, according to industry sources.
WayRay unveils holographic AR navigation system for cars
Switzerland startup WayRay has newly developed the world's first holographic AR (augmented reality) navigation system for cars, allowing drivers to focus on the road and make driving safer while also able to access navigation information.
The Taiwan government-sponsored Industrial Technology Research Institute (ITRI) has announced to establish an office for developing technologies and solutions for power grid management and modernization.
What is behind HPE reported call for switch to AMD?
HP Enterprise (HPE) has recently been said to have recommended its partners adopt its server products using AMD's platforms to avoid the impact of Intel processor shortages. But Digitimes sources from the upstream supply chain have indicated that no other server players have seen issues with supply of Intel's server processors.
ASEAN sees fast growth in e-commerce, says ASOCIO chairman
The ASEAN market sees fast growth in e-commerce, with total transaction value increasing by about 20% annually, according to ASOCIO (Asian-Oceanian Computing Industry Organization) chairman David Wong Nan Fay.
Raytheon developing system that lets artificial intelligence explain itself: DARPA program applies 'trust but verify' to AI
Under the Defense Research Project Agency's (DARPA) Explainable Artificial Intelligence program (XAI), Raytheon (NYSE : RTN ) BBN Technologies is developing a first of its kind neural network that explains itself.
The XAI program aims to create a suite of machine learning techniques that produce more explainable models while maintaining a high level of performance. It also aims to help human users understand, appropriately trust and effectively manage the emerging generation of artificially intelligent partners.
Raytheon BBN's Explainable Question Answering System will allow AI programs to 'show their work,' increasing the human user's confidence in the machine's suggestions. "Our goal is to give the user enough information about how the machine's answer was derived and show that the system considered relevant information so users feel comfortable acting on the system's recommendation," said Bill Ferguson, lead scientist and EQUAS principal investigator at Raytheon BBN.
EQUAS will show users which data mattered most in the AI decision-making process. Using a graphical interface, users can explore the system's recommendations and see why it chose one answer over another. The technology is still in its early phases of development but could potentially be used for a wide-range of applications.
"A fully developed system like EQUAS could help with decision-making not only in DoD operations, but in a range of other applications like campus security, industrial operations and the medical field," said Ferguson. "Say a doctor has an x-ray image of a lung and her AI system says that its cancer. She asks why and the system highlights what it thinks are suspicious shadows, which she had previously disregarded as artifacts of the X-ray process. Now the doctor can make the call – to diagnose, investigate further, or, if she still thinks the system is in error, to let it go."
As the system is enhanced, EQUAS will be able to monitor itself and share factors that limit its ability to make reliable recommendations. This self-monitoring capability will help developers refine AI systems, allowing them to inject additional data or change how data is processed.
Raytheon Company, with 2017 sales of $25 billion and 64,000 employees, is a technology and innovation leader specializing in defense, civil government and cybersecurity solutions. With a history of innovation spanning 96 years, Raytheon provides state-of-the-art electronics, mission systems integration, C5ITM products and services, sensing, effects, and mission support for customers in more than 80 countries. Raytheon is headquartered in Waltham, Mass. Follow us on Twitter.
Northrop Grumman, DARPA Set New Standard for Wireless Transmission Speed
Northrop Grumman Corporation (NYSE: NOC) and the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) have set a new standard for wireless transmission by operating a data link at 100 gigabits per second (Gbps) over a distance of 20 kilometers in a city environment.
The two-way data link, which featured active pointing and tracking, was demonstrated Jan. 19, 2018 in Los Angeles.
The blazing data rate is fast enough to download a 50 Gigabyte blue ray video in four seconds. The demonstration marked the successful completion of Northrop Grumman’s Phase 2 contract for DARPA’s 100 Gbps (100G) RF Backbone program.
The 100G system is capable of rate adaptation on a frame by frame basis from 9 Gbps to 102 Gbps to maximize data rate throughout dynamic channel variations. Extensive link characterization demonstrated short-term error-free performance from 9 to 91 Gbps, and a maximum data rate of 102 Gbps with 1 erroneous bit received per ten thousand bits transmitted.
The successful data link results from the integration of several key technologies. The link operates at millimeter wave frequencies (in this case, 71-76 gigahertz and 81-86 gigahertz) with 5 gigahertz of bandwidth, or data carrying capacity, and uses a bandwidth efficient signal modulation technique to transmit 25 Gbps data streams on each 5 gigahertz channel. To double the rate within the fixed bandwidth, the data link transmits dual orthogonally polarized signals from each antenna. Additionally, the link transmits from two antennas simultaneously (spatial multiplexing) and uses multiple-input-multiple-output (MIMO) signal processing techniques to separate the signals at two receiving antennas, thus again doubling the data rate within the fixed bandwidth.
According to Louis Christen, director, research and technology, Northrop Grumman, “This dramatic improvement in data transmission performance could significantly increase the volume of airborne sensor data that can be gathered and reduce the time needed to exploit sensor data.”
“Next generation sensors such as hyperspectral imagers typically collect data faster, and in larger quantity than most air-to-ground data links can comfortably transmit,” said Christen. “Without such a high data rate link data would need to be reviewed and analyzed after the aircraft lands.”
By contrast, a 100G data link could transmit high-rate data directly from the aircraft to commanders on the ground in near real time, allowing them to respond more quickly to dynamic operations.
The successful 100G ground demonstration sets the stage for the flight test phase of the 100G RF Backbone program. This next phase, which started in June, demonstrates the 100G air-to-ground link up to 100 Gbps over a 100 km range and extended ranges with lower data rates. The 100G hardware will be flown aboard the Proteus demonstration aircraft developed by Northrop Grumman subsidiary Scaled Composites.
Northrop Grumman’s 100G industry team includes Raytheon, which developed the millimeter wave antennas and related RF electronics and Silvus Technologies, which provides the key spatial multiplexing and MIMO signal processing technologies.
Northrop Grumman is a leading global security company providing innovative systems, products and solutions in autonomous systems, cyber, C4ISR, space, strike, and logistics and modernization to customers worldwide. Please visit news.northropgrumman.com and follow us on Twitter, @NGCNews, for more information.
Today, FLIR announced that it has received a delivery order for FLIR IBAC ™ 2 biological agent detector systems to support the United States (U.S.) Forces Korea (USFK). The delivery order is under a 10-year indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity (IDIQ) contract in support of the Joint United States Forces Korea Portal and Integrated Threat Recognition (JUPITR) program led by the Joint Program Executive Office for Chemical and Biological Defense (JPEO-CBD). The order is valued at $4 million with deliveries beginning in July 2018.
The FLIR IBAC 2 is a real-time air monitor that alarms in less than 60 seconds when an airborne bio-threat, such as spore, viral, cellular, and protein toxins, are present, then collects, preserves, and transmits data to command and control centers. With more than 1,500 operating units worldwide, the FLIR IBAC 2 is the most widely deployed biological trigger on the market today.
“We are proud to support our U.S. militaries with reliable products that ensure accurate analysis of biological threats for safe and fast response,” said David Ray, President of the Government and Defense Business Unit at FLIR “This order supports our mission to provide solutions that save lives and livelihoods, equipping U.S. soldiers with technology that gathers, interprets, and communicates actionable information, reducing decision time in support of our national security.”
U.S. Air Force's First Advanced GPS III Satellite Shipped To Cape Canaveral For Launch
The first of the U.S. Air Force's advanced new, higher-power, harder-to-jam GPS III satellites is making its way to the launch pad.
On August 20, Lockheed Martin (NYSE : LMT ) shipped the U.S. Air Force's first GPS III space vehicle (GPS III SV01) to Cape Canaveral for its expected launch in December. Designed and built at Lockheed Martin's GPS III Processing Facility near Denver, the satellite was shipped from Buckley Air Force Base, Colorado, to the Cape on a massive Air Force C-17 aircraft.
GPS III will be the most powerful and resilient GPS satellite ever put on orbit. Developed with an entirely new design for U.S. and allied forces, it will have three times greater accuracy and up to eight times improved anti-jamming capabilities over the previous GPS II satellite design block, which makes up today's GPS constellation.
GPS III also will be the first GPS satellite to broadcast the new L1C civil signal. Shared by other international global navigation satellite systems, like Galileo, the L1C signal will improve future connectivity worldwide for commercial and civilian users.
"Once on orbit, the advanced technology of this first GPS III space vehicle will begin playing a major role in the Air Force's plan to modernize the GPS satellite constellation," said Johnathon Caldwell, Lockheed Martin's program manager for Navigation Systems. "We are excited to start bringing GPS III's new capabilities to the world and proud to continue to serve as a valued partner for the Air Force's positioning, navigation and timing mission systems."
Headquartered in Bethesda, Maryland, Lockheed Martin is a global security and aerospace company that employs approximately 100,000 people worldwide and is principally engaged in the research, design, development, manufacture, integration and sustainment of advanced technology systems, products and services. This year the company received three Edison Awards for ground-breaking innovations in autonomy, satellite technology and directed energy.
Pixel 3 price revealed by premature retail listing
With the launch of the Pixel 3 scheduled for October 9th, the price of Google’s new phone has been the one detail that’s been most elusive. Thankfully, a retail listing for the Pixel 3 popped up on JD.com with a list price of 4,999 RMB or $730 USD. Last year’s Pixel 2 sold for $649 in ...
A lot of people are eagerly awaiting the launch of the OnePlus 6T. The phone isn’t expected to be more powerful than the wildly-successful OnePlus 6, but rumors have claimed that the phone would feature an improved camera setup with a total of three sensors on the back of the phone. Unfortunately, a new image ...
The iPhone XS still can’t compete with the Pixel 2’s camera
There’s a lot of hype around the new Apple iPhone XS and it’s “improved imaging sensor” which captures more light and delivers better images. While Apple’s smartphones have often been regarded as having the best smartphone cameras on the market, things started shifting a few years ago. When the Samsung Galaxy S7 was introduced, it gave ...
Twitter is making a change that no one thought they’d ever make — the chronological timeline is officially making its return! Shockingly, Twitter admitted that its “show the best Tweets first” feature hasn’t really panned out. While the algorithm did promote content from other users that you might be interested in, it also hid a lot of ...
Massive Undersea Walls Could Stop Glaciers From Melting, Scientists Say
An anonymous reader quotes a report from CNN: Building walls on the seafloor could prevent glaciers from melting and sea levels rising due to global warming, scientists say. Barriers of sand and rock positioned at the base of glaciers would stop ice sheets sliding and collapsing, and prevent warm water from eroding the ice from beneath, according to research published this week in the Cryosphere journal, from the European Geosciences Union. The audacious idea centers on the construction of "extremely simple structures, merely piles of aggregate on the ocean floor, although more advanced structures could certainly be explored in the future," said the report's authors, Michael Wolovick, a researcher at the department of geosciences at Princeton University, and John Moore, professor of climate change at the University of Lapland in Finland.
Using computer models to gauge the probable impact of walls on erosion of the Thwaites glacier in Antarctica, one of the world's largest, Wolovick and Moore hoped to test the efficiency of "a locally targeted intervention." They claimed the simplest designs would allow direct comparison with existing engineering projects. "The easiest design that we considered would be comparable to the largest civil engineering projects that humanity has ever attempted," they said. "An ice sheet intervention today would be at the edge of human capabilities." For example, building four isolated walls would require between 0.1 and 1.5 cubic km of material. "That is comparable to the 0.1 km3 that was used to create Palm Jumeirah in Dubai ($12 billion)...(and) the 0.3 km3 that was used to create Hong Kong International Airport ($20 billion)," the report said. The authors say there's only a 30% probability of success due to the harsh environment, but did mention that the scientific community could work on a plan that was both achievable and had a high probability of success.
Southern California Sees Its Longest Streak of Bad Air In Decades
According to state monitoring data, Southern California violated federal smog standards for 87 consecutive days -- the longest stretch of bad air in at least 20 years. "The streak is the latest sign that Souther California's battle against smog is faltering after decades of dramatic improvement," reports San Francisco Chronicle. From the report: The ozone pollution spell began June 19 and continued through July and August, with every day exceeding the federal health standard of 70 parts per billion somewhere across Los Angeles, Orange, Riverside and San Bernardino counties. It didn't relent until Sept. 14, when air pollution dipped to "moderate" levels within federal limits for ozone, the lung-damaging gas in smog that triggers asthma and other respiratory illnesses. It's not unusual for Southern California summers to go weeks without a break in the smog, especially in inland communities that have long suffered the nation's worst ozone levels. But environmentalists and health experts say the persistence of dirty air this year is a troubling sign that demands action. Regulators blame the dip in air quality in recent years on hotter weather and stronger, more persistent inversion layers that trap smog near the ground.
Amazon Is Making It Easier To Set Up New IoT Gadgets
At an event yesterday where the company unveiled a range of new Echo smart speakers and other Alexa-enabled devices, the company announced a new way to easily set up internet of things (IoT) devices. The Verge reports: Called Wi-Fi Simple Setup, the system will use Amazon's Wi-Fi Lockers to store your Wi-Fi credentials and share them with compatible smart home devices. Amazon is debuting this tech with TP-Link and Eero, with the idea that customers can reuse network credentials in order to set up new devices. This means devices will connect on their own instead of you having to manually set up each smart product. According to Amazon, it's as easy as plugging in a Wi-Fi Simple Setup-enabled device. The device will automatically look for the Wi-Fi Simple Setup Network and connect once it receives encrypted credentials. Amazon says the process should take no longer than 30 seconds. The ecommerce company also announced a "plug-and-play smart home kit called Alexa Connect Kit. "It starts with a module that has Bluetooth LE and Wi-Fi and a real-time OS that companies can put in their products in order to make them smart," reports The Verge.
FCC Angers Cities, Towns With $2 Billion Giveaway To Wireless Carriers
An anonymous reader quotes a report from Ars Technica: The Federal Communications Commission's plan for spurring 5G wireless deployment will prevent city and town governments from charging carriers about $2 billion worth of fees. The FCC proposal, to be voted on at its meeting on September 26, limits the amount that local governments may charge carriers for placing 5G equipment such as small cells on poles, traffic lights, and other government property in public rights-of-way. The proposal, which is supported by the FCC's Republican majority, would also force cities and towns to act on carrier applications within 60 or 90 days. The FCC says this will spur more deployment of small cells, which "have antennas often no larger than a small backpack." But the commission's proposal doesn't require carriers to build in areas where they wouldn't have done so anyway.
The FCC plan proposes up-front application fees of $100 for each small cell and annual fees of up to $270 per small cell. The FCC says this is a "reasonable approximation of [localities'] costs for processing applications and for managing deployments in the rights-of-way." Cities that charge more than that would likely face litigation from carriers and would have to prove that the fees are a reasonable approximation of all costs and "non-discriminatory." But, according to Philadelphia, those proposed fees "are simply de minimis when measured against the costs that the City incurs to approve, support, and maintain the many small cell and distributed antenna system (DAS) installations in its public rights-of-way." Philadelphia said it "has already established a fee structure and online application process to apply for small cell deployment that has served the needs of its citizens without prohibiting or creating barriers to entry for infrastructure investment." The city has also negotiated license agreements for small cell installations with Verizon, AT&T, and other carriers. In addition to Philadelphia, the Rural County Represenatives of California (RCRC), a group representing 35 rural California counties, also objects to the FCC plan. They told the FCC that its "proposed recurring fee structure is an unreasonable overreach that will harm local policy innovation."
"That is why many local governments have worked to negotiate fair agreements with wireless providers, which may exceed that number or provide additional benefits to the community," the RCRC wrote. "The FCC's decision to prohibit municipalities' ability to require 'in-kind' conditions on installation agreements is in direct conflict with the FCC's stated intent of this Order and further constrains local governments in deploying wireless services to historically underserved areas."
Facebook Will Open a 'War Room' Next Week To Monitor Election Interference
An anonymous reader quotes a report from The Verge: Sheera Frankel and Mike Isaac [write from The New York Times]: "Sandwiched between Building 20 and Building 21 in the heart of Facebook's campus, an approximately 25-foot by 35-foot conference room is under construction. Thick cords of blue wiring hang from the ceiling, ready to be attached to window-size computer monitors on 16 desks. On one wall, a half dozen televisions will be tuned to CNN, MSNBC, Fox News and other major cable networks. A small paper sign with orange lettering taped to the glass door describes what's being built: "War Room."
Set to open next week, the conference room is in keeping with Facebook's nick-of-time approach to midterm election preparedness. (It introduced a "pilot program" for candidate account security on Monday.) It's a big project. Samidh Chakrabarti, who oversees elections and civic engagement, told the Times: "We see this as probably the biggest companywide reorientation since our shift from desktops to mobile phones." Of course, the effort extends beyond the new conference room. Chakrabarti showed the Times a new internal tool "that helps track information flowing across the social network in real time," helping to identify misinformation as it goes viral or a surge in the creation of new (and likely fake) accounts.
Tesla Model 3 Earns Five-Star Crash Safety Rating From NHTSA
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has awarded the Tesla Model 3 with a five-star safety rating -- the highest possible score. This means that every car Tesla has built has earned a five-star rating. Jalopnik reports: The NHTSA tests cover three primary categories: Frontal Crash, Side Crash, and Rollover, and the Model 3 received the highest ratings in all categories. For some categories, it's easy to understand why Teslas do so well. Rollover resistance, for example, makes sense for cars that carry most of their weight at the very bottom, in the batteries sandwiched in the Tesla's chassis design. Other reasons for the remarkable crash safety may be that, without the need for a heavy chunk of metal as a drivetrain, effective and large crumple zones can be designed in, front and rear. The NHTSA has released videos of their frontal collision test, side pole collision test, and side collision test, for those who like watching these sort of things.
After becoming the third most popular free app on China's App Store, Twitch is now no longer accessible and the Twitch app has been removed from the country's App Store. Engadget reports: While Twitch was available in China previously, it never gained much traction since its service is much slower than it is elsewhere. But when the country's CCTV state broadcaster chose not to air the Asian Games, those wanting to watch the event's eSports competitions sought coverage from other outlets. Now, with Twitch seemingly blocked in the country, it follows in the footsteps of other banned sites, including Facebook, YouTube and Twitter. Abacus first reported the news.
Apple Will Judge Call, Email Activity To Assign Users a 'Trust Score'
In practical terms, the Cupertino crew will only look at Apple account usage patterns and hoover up metadata rather than more personal, and potentially damning information. [T]he data collection and trust score assigning should help Apple better spot and dodgy activity going on in Apple accounts that aren't in keeping with those of the legitimate users. [I]t's not entirely clear how Apple will use the metadata to actually spot fraud, as it hasn't explained its workings.
Sprint: LG G Flex Will Launch Online on January 31 for $299 on Contract
Starting today, Sprint customers can pre-order the unique LG G Flex smartphone for $299 online with a two year contract. By pre-ordering between now and January 31st, customers will receive a complimentary Quickwindow Folio Case, which is valued at $60. Sprint…
Motorola Announces Moto X Launch in UK, France, and Germany on February 1
Certain European consumers interested in the Moto X smartphone from Motorola will soon have their chance to purchase the excellent handset. Expected to launch on February 1st, Motorola will sell its iconic Moto X device in Black or White in…
Microsoft's Jet crash: Zero-day flaw drops after deadline passes
Don't click on the link, people – well, people using the database on a vulnerable installation
The Zero Day Initiative has gone public with an unpatched remote-code execution bug in Microsoft's Jet database engine, after giving Redmond 120 days to fix it. The Windows giant did not address the security blunder in time, so now everyone knows about the flaw, and no official patch is available.…
Developer goes rogue, shoots four colleagues at ERP code maker
Gunman dead and now named by cops, one worker in critical condition, two serious
Cops have named the programmer who went on a gun rampage at WTS Paradigm – a US maker of enterprise resource planning software – this week. He shot four colleagues, leaving one in a critical condition.…
US sanctions Trinidad and Tobago nationals as key ISIS financial facilitators
By Caribbean News Now contributor WASHINGTON, USA — The US Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) on Wednesday designated two Trinidad and Tobago nationals as Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) financiers pursuant to a presidential executive order, which targets terrorists and those providing support to terrorists or acts of […]
New tropical depression likely to form as it heads towards the Caribbean
By Caribbean News Now contributor MIAMI, USA — Showers and thunderstorms associated with a tropical wave in the eastern tropical Atlantic are showing some signs of organization. The environment is forecast to be conducive for slow development, and a tropical depression could form early next week while the system moves westward at 15 to 20 […]
Cayman Islands governor officially removed from post
GEORGE TOWN, Cayman Islands (CNS) — Cayman Islands Governor Anwar Choudhury will not be returning to the Cayman Islands but will be re-posted to London, according to an extremely brief statement from the governor’s office on Thursday. Officials said that a short-term successor will now be appointed while the recruitment process for a permanent replacement […]
Consensual sex between male adults no longer illegal in Trinidad and Tobago
by Caribbean News Now contributor PORT OF SPAIN, Trinidad — In delivering a 14-page decision in Port-of-Spain on Thursday, High Court Judge Devindra Rampersad modified sections 13 and 16 of the Sexual Offences Act, which had previously criminalised buggery and serious indecency in Trinidad and Tobago, even between consenting adults. Although Rampersad had declared that […]