technology

Facebook AI describes photos to blind users

Facebook AI describes photos to blind users

Facebook has detailed an ongoing effort with its artificial intelligence that enables its software to describe photographs to blind users. CEO Mark Zuckerberg posted a link to the video describing the technology on his own Facebook account yesterday, briefly discussing the feature and Facebook’s work. He said the video inspired him, and that, “Our AI can now look at a photo, figure out what’s in it and help explain it to you.”

Continue Reading

Mitsubishi Electric uses machine-learning tech to detect distracted drivers

Mitsubishi Electric uses machine-learning tech to detect distracted drivers

Distracted driving causes a huge number of accidents each year with some of those accidents resulting in the death of the driver, passenger, or pedestrians. Mitsubishi Electric has announced that it has developed machine-learning technology that is designed to help the automotive industry detect distractions in drivers when the vehicles are traveling straight.

Continue Reading

Sixth-grader offers secure passwords shipped to your door

Sixth-grader offers secure passwords shipped to your door

These days, so much of our content is stored online in a digital format. You need only enter your username and password, and you have instant access to it all. While that makes our lives so much easier, it can also make our lives a little less secure. After all, if someone is able to obtain or guess those credentials, all of your private information is laid bare. So how to you ensure that you have a password that no one will guess? One 11-year-old from New York thinks she has the answer.

Continue Reading

Tensegrity robot can crawl into air ducts to clean them

Tensegrity robot can crawl into air ducts to clean them

By now, robot vacuum cleaners are no longer the oddity or novelty they were a few years ago, but despite their hi-tech functionality, they are mostly limited to cleaning the ground you walk on. Trying to keep ventilation and air ducts clean is an impossible task for these robots, given the cramped spaces and vertical elevations involved in the process. Enter DuCTT, or the Duct Climbing Tetrahedral Tensegrity robot, taking lessons learned from NASA's robotics research to keep the indoor air you breathe clean and healthy.

Continue Reading

Hendo 2.0 hoverboard takes off on Back to the Future Day

Hendo 2.0 hoverboard takes off on Back to the Future Day

Few pop sci franchises can claim to have influenced and continue to influence the progress of technology as Back to the Future, from self-lacing shoes to hoverboards. Even fewer perhaps can lay claim to a date when reality and fiction intersect. That date is October 21, 2015, a real date this year and the very same date when Marty McFly traveled to the future to give birth to many of our hi-tech dreams. And to celebrate that momentous occasion, Arx Pax has unveiled version 2.0 of the Hendo hoverboard that promises to make at least one of those dreams come true.

Continue Reading

Microsoft Research tech autocompletes animation, not text

Microsoft Research tech autocompletes animation, not text

Autocomplete. That seemingly magical yet sometimes also illogical feature that has saved our fingers and our brains from some of the more tedious parts of typing out a long exposition on a small screen. It has become part and parcel of our smartphone-centric modern lives but some researchers are trying put a whole new spin on the concept. Instead of trying to guess what you will type next, Microsoft Research has an autocomplete system that tries to predict how a hand-drawn image will be animated.

Continue Reading

Magic Leap shows off AR demo made with no special effects

Magic Leap shows off AR demo made with no special effects

Earlier this year, Magic Leap published a video that demonstrated its vision, no pun intended, for an augmented reality experience with a still unknown device. Back then, it was already a sight to behold, showing off what AR dreams are made off. That said, it was for all intents and purposes a concept video that showed what can be done. Now Magic Leap is showing what has indeed been done, with a new AR reel that it claims was shot without the use of any special effects or compositing.

Continue Reading

Researchers give robot simulated neurons for travel

Researchers give robot simulated neurons for travel

Humans and animals alike are able to travel around in familiar places without using a map or getting lost; put the GPS away and pay attention to your surroundings, and you’ll quickly form a mental map of whatever unfamiliar place you’re visiting. This ability is due to two neuron types: grid cells and place cells, as they’re called. Scientists have recently used simulated versions of these cells to help a robot navigate.

Continue Reading

Wove may be the true fashion-friendly smart bracelet to beat

Wove may be the true fashion-friendly smart bracelet to beat

Earlier this year we saw Wove for the first time - now, several months down the line, we're able to see the device in a bit more detail. This device works with a bendable display that wraps around your wrist like a slap-bracelet from the 1990's. We saw what the display could do - now we're seeing more on how the content will exist on the band. We're also seeing the possibilities expand with how you'll be utilizing this band to be hyper-fashionable for the year 2015 and beyond.

Continue Reading

Project puts real-time virtual emotions on your stoic face

Project puts real-time virtual emotions on your stoic face

In a demonstration of what is perhaps the freakiest technology ever, Stanford researchers have managed to take the facial expressions from one person's face and transplant them onto another person's face...in real time through video. Imagine that you're channeling your inner stoic, sitting without expression in a chair, but a live video feed of your face shows you smiling, singing, sticking out your tongue, or any number of other things.

Continue Reading

Microsoft researchers eying multi-person mixed reality

Microsoft researchers eying multi-person mixed reality

You may have seen and may have even been wowed by the most recent demonstration of HoloLens last week. But as awesome and spectacular Microsoft's take on augmented or mixed reality may be, like all of its kind, it is still primarily a solitary activity that only the wearer can experience fully. Everyone else, in the end, is simply a spectator. Microsoft, however, might not content with simply accepting that restriction. Researchers at the lab of Jarod Lanier, a VR and AR pioneer in th 80s, are working on what could be the world's first multi-person mixed reality system.

Continue Reading

BMW 7 Welcome Light Carpet shows you where your car is

BMW 7 Welcome Light Carpet shows you where your car is

If trying to walk through a poorly lit parking lot weren't exasperating enough, struggling to find where your car and its door is could very well be. Imagine if you could, at the push of a button on the key fob, shine a light on the problem. That's exactly what BMW did with its BMW 7 Series and its new "Welcome Light Carpet" feature that illumines the ground on both sides of the car, guiding owners to the safety and comfort of their high-tech, luxurious car.

Continue Reading