China slams brakes on autonomous car public testing

China slams brakes on autonomous car public testing

Public testing of autonomous cars in China has been put on hold, with regulators insisting automakers must wait until the government has figured out the necessary regulations. Several self-driving vehicle projects are underway in the country, but the moratorium means that, for now, prototypes can only be trialled on private facilities.

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Firefox will block some Flash content starting next month

Firefox will block some Flash content starting next month

As of next month, Mozilla will have its Firebox browser block some Flash content, following the same trend we’ve seen with the other major Web browsers. Only non-essential Flash content will be blocked; this includes Flash elements that aren’t visible to the end user. As a result, says Mozilla, users will experience less issues with Flash crashing or causing the browser to hang. Battery life, page load speeds, Firefox’s responsiveness, and overall security will all be improved as a result.

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DARPA CHIPs program seeks miniature, modular ‘chiplets’

DARPA CHIPs program seeks miniature, modular ‘chiplets’

DARPA has a new program called CHIPS, which is short for Common Heterogenous Integration and Intellectual Property Reuse Strategies Program. A mouthful, right? CHIPS seeks innovation as complex as the name behind the acronym: the taking of modern printed circuit boards and doing away with them via the development of miniature, modular “chiplets.” Says DARPA, it wants “an entire PCB” to be condensed down into a single device that is about the size of one present-day chip.

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Animal Crossing: New Leaf receiving amiibo support later this year

Animal Crossing: New Leaf receiving amiibo support later this year

Nintendo is taking a quick break from all of the Pokemon GO hysteria to give us a truly surprising announcement: Animal Crossing: New Leaf will be getting amiibo support this autumn. Obviously you'd expect Nintendo to throw a ton of support behind amiibo considering their popularity, but the surprising bit about this announcement is that Animal Crossing: New Leaf was released in North America more than three years ago.

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How Gorilla Glass 5 made surviving everyday phone drops the priority

How Gorilla Glass 5 made surviving everyday phone drops the priority

It's a fact of life that, as smartphones have got bigger, slimmer, and more slippery, you're increasingly likely to drop them while playing Pokemon GO and smash the display. Corning can't stop you from getting over-excited at the sight of a wild Pikachu, but it does have a new version of its toughened glass, Gorilla Glass 5, which promises even greater resilience to being dropped on the next generation of smartphones and other devices.

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NASA atmosphere study: two exoplanets could possibly support life

NASA atmosphere study: two exoplanets could possibly support life

NASA says a pair of exoplanets may have habitable atmospheres based on an atmospheric study researchers recently performed. The scientists focused on exoplanets similar in size to Earth that are described as being ‘temperate.’ The study was done using the Hubble Space Telescope, and found that the exoplanets TRAPPIST-1c and TRAPPIST-1b have atmospheres that could possibly support life.

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Swiftmoji brings predictive emoji keyboards to Android and iOS

Swiftmoji brings predictive emoji keyboards to Android and iOS

The use of emoji is something that only seems to get more popular by the day, but as the popularity of emoji rises, so too do the sheer number of them. After all, there are just so many emoji to use these days that it can be difficult to find the perfect one for what you're trying to say, even though you know it's out there. SwiftKey recognizes this struggle, and today rolled out a new emoji prediction app for iOS and Android, aptly named Swiftmoji.

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Sony Z Series 4K TVs launch with ultra-contrast and HDR

Sony Z Series 4K TVs launch with ultra-contrast and HDR

Sony has taken the wraps off its new line of premium 4K-resolution televisions, the Z Series. This line, which is currently comprised of three models ranging from 65-inches to 100-inches, offers high-contrast and High Dynamic Range image quality in an Ultra HD resolution, as well as thin bezels, Backlight Master Drive technology, the 4K Processor X1 Extreme, and more. Two of the three new models are available for preorder now and will be launching some time this summer.

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These Star Wars and My Little Pony collectibles will be Comic-Con exclusives

These Star Wars and My Little Pony collectibles will be Comic-Con exclusives

San Diego Comic-Con kicks off tonight with a special preview of the show, and Hasbro will be arriving at the convention with a bunch of limited edition collectibles in tow. The collectibles on offer cover a range of franchises, from Hasbro's own My Little Pony and Transformers to licensed collectibles from the Star Wars universe. These collectibles will be available exclusively at Comic-Con while the convention is taking place, with Hasbro saying it will make a limited number of them available at its online store once Comic-Con wraps on Sunday.

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Will car-sharing and self-driving cars kill congestion? It’s not so simple

Will car-sharing and self-driving cars kill congestion? It’s not so simple

Car sharing and autonomous vehicles are widely expected to cut road congestion, but the future for drivers may not be so clear cut, according to two new studies released this week. The impact of alternatives to individual car ownership is still fairly uncertain, particularly as the long-term market viability of self-driving vehicles remains mired in legal, ethical, and technological questions, with the potential for traffic jams to initially get worse, not better.

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Facebook Messenger hits 1 billion user milestone

Facebook Messenger hits 1 billion user milestone

Facebook's Messenger service has hit a rather impressive milestone today, revealing that it has crossed the one billion user threshold. This means that Messenger has added another 100 million users to its ranks in just a couple of months, with the announcement that it had hit 900 million active users coming back in April. In order to celebrate its one billion user achievement, Facebook says that using the balloon emoji in open conversations will summon floating balloons, much like Messenger's Valentine's Day hearts.

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Google put DeepMind in charge of data center cooling, and the AI wowed

Google put DeepMind in charge of data center cooling, and the AI wowed

Putting a multi-million dollar, cutting-edge artificial intelligence in charge of your thermostat might not seem an obvious use, but it's helping Google make big savings on its electricity use. The AI in question is DeepMind, which Google acquired back in 2014 for an estimated $600m+, with one of the learning computer's new roles being management of its data centers.

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