Autonomous self-driving technologies may be grabbing headlines for vehicle manufacturers but it’s hardly the only direction in which carmakers are innovating. Infotainment systems bring a smartphone-like platform for software applications straight to the dashboard, providing everything from navigation assistance to streaming music services and even phone call capabilities. Knob-based radio and air conditioning controls are being replaced by touch-sensitive displays and voice-controlled services connecting drivers and passengers to Internet-based services. According to market research reports, the market for in-car infotainment systems is expected to rise from $14.4 billion in 2016 up to $35.2 billion in 2020.
Recently, some major American tech companies operating across the globe have publicly announced their agreement to a code of conduct developed by the European Commission and designed to “combat the illegal spread of hate speech online in Europe.” The code of conduct, to which these tech companies have promised the European Commission their online services will adhere, stipulates that the companies have to establish a couple of processes that target the elimination of hate speech.
Google, the Internet software and services arm of Alphabet Inc. (NASDAG:GOOGL), offers a tremendously valuable portal to the wider Internet through its flagship search engine service. One of the more popular aspects of Google’s search engine is the image search features; as of July 2010, Google’s image search was delivering one billion pageviews per day to the company and 10…
If you were to ever wake up and find that messages were being transmitted directly to your eye, as was the case with Mike Peterson, you might be able to blame it on Alphabet Inc. Alphabet subsidiary Verily Life Sciences filed a patent application recently published by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office as U.S. Patent Application No. 20160113760, filed under the title Intra-Ocular Device. It would protect a method involving injecting fluid into an eye’s lens capsule after the lens has been removed, positioning an intra-ocular device having an electronic lens providing optical power within that fluid and then solidifying the fluid which couples the lens capsule to the intra-ocular device.
Alphabet’s smart home technologies extend beyond thermostats as is evidenced by the hazard detection device that would be protected by U.S. Patent Application No. 20160078751, entitled Smart-Home Hazard Detector Providing Sensor-Based Device Positioning Guidance. This invention is designed for the creation of more intelligent hazard detection networks for smoke, carbon monoxide and other hazards by providing a guide for placing a hazard monitoring device in the best possible location. Greater control over home HVAC systems to improve comfort in individual rooms is described within U.S. Patent Application No. 20160091220, which is titled Wireless Zone Control via Mechanically Adjustable Airflow Elements…
When considering what makes an autonomous vehicle truly autonomous, it’s important to note that there are different shades of autonomy leading up to the fully self-driving car. One of the organizations which maintains a rubric helping to define autonomous vehicles is the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), which recognizes five different levels of autonomy for vehicles, starting with Level 0, the most basic tier in which the driver controls all operations, as is the case for conventional vehicles today. Level 1 function-specific automation is reached when a single control function is automated, such as when electronic stability control systems help drivers maintain vehicle control, without completely replacing the need for driver vigilance. Level 2 combined function automation occurs when two primary control functions are designed to work together to relieve a driver…
The recent Model 3 announcement by Tesla took the industry by storm and saw Tesla collecting a whopping $276 million in preorders in a matter of days. In focus in particular was the autopilot features on the new Tesla car – which meant that Autonomous Cars (a.k.a. driverless cars or self-driven cars) are finally breaching the line between concept and mainstream… Though efforts have escalated significantly in the last five years, autonomous cars are not a new concept. Initial research can be traced back all the way to the 1920s.
The subsea data center operations will be cooled by the surrounding water and designs with turbines or tidal energy systems, which would further reduce electricity costs, have been considered. Although the data center’s aquatic environment is certainly a novel concept, the use of combined heat and power (CHP) plants to provide a cheap, dedicated power supply and temperature controls is being considered more often in recent months.
Unlike classical computing, which relies on bits that take on values of either 1 or 0 in order to process information, quantum computing relies on qubits. Qubits can take the distinguishable 1 or 0 value, but unlike classical bits, there are aspects of quantum mechanics, which make qubits much more useful in certain applications. One unique element of qubits are their ability to take on a superposition, meaning that a single qubit can be in multiple states at a single moment in the same way that a light can behave as a wave or a particle at the molecular level. Entanglement, or the state in which two qubits can be inextricably linked even when separated by great distances, is another effect of quantum mechanics which has implications for computing. Superposition and entanglement would allow a quantum computer to rapidly perform calculations which could never be completed by a classical computer, such as finding the factors of a number with more than 500 digits, unlocking a new world in data encryption and analysis.
The model for implementing digital wallets has largely relied upon what is known as the four-corner payment model by incorporating the use of payment cards, such as debit cards. Market research firm Research and Markets has reported that nearly three-quarters of all mobile digital wallets are funded by payment cards. By the end of 2013, 22 percent of the world’s population owned a smartphone, so it’s not inconceivable to think of a time in the future where credit and debit cards will become obviated by near-field communications (NFC) payment systems on smartphones entirely, despite the major rollout of payment cards with EMV computer chips by financial institutions. Today, we’ll take a look at the top three contenders in the mobile payment world to see what we can expect from each in the coming months.
American business interests could be adrift at sea after the European Court of Justice invalidated the U.S.-EU Safe Harbor agreement, which governs the transfer of data from European citizens to data centers outside of Europe. Meanwhile, the high tech world of Silicon Valley is getting a new, well-heeled neighbor when Japanese automaker Toyota Motors Corp. (NYSE:TM) realizes its plans of establishing a new five-year corporate venture focused on developing artificial intelligence (AI) technologies. Google is also undertaking the push to develop its own processing chips in an effort to stem fragmentation of Android device development.
Retailers always top the list of seasonal and holiday hiring sprees but one of the largest employer of seasonal workers the past few years doesn’t own a single brick-and-mortar retail establishment. That would be e-commerce giant Amazon.com, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN) of Seattle, WA. In 2014, the Internet retailer announced that it would hire 80,000 seasonal workers during last year’s holiday season. In 2015, Amazon has upped that number to 100,000 workers that it plans to employ on at least a temporary basis. This makes Amazon the single largest employer of seasonal workers during 2015, ahead of United Parcel Service, Inc. (NYSE:UPS) and its 95,000 holiday hires.
Google, now Alphabet Inc., is one of the world’s most valuable companies but employs only a tenth of the number of workers of past giants of industry like AT&T and General Motors did about a half century ago. But we need to point out some obvious problems with the theory that technological innovation is dealing irreparable harm to the American workforce. Simply stated, you cannot ignore the reality that technological innovation is a net creator of jobs, from those who create the innovation, to those who market and sell the innovations, to those who install and maintain the innovations. Focusing only on the low income workers who will be displaced by robotics, for example, creates an inaccurate picture that significantly distorts the workplace realities. Further, it is those innovation based jobs that are the high paying jobs that our economy most wants and which will pay livable wages.
By the end of 2015, about 40% of all credit and debit card transactions will use EMV cards. To process payments on EMV cards, businesses must upgrade to new card processing or point-of-sale technologies.
Although some tech companies publishing earnings reports had rockier third quarters than others, performance was very good almost across the board, making now a very good time to be in the consumer or high tech industries. The third quarter of 2015 is the first one for which Google reported its earnings under the name of its new parent holding company, Alphabet Inc. (NASDAQ:GOOG). The early returns are showing that the new structure is a profitable one for Alphabet, which beat analyst estimates for earnings per share (EPS) by almost 15 cents per share. It was a much different story for IBM (NYSE:IBM) of Armonk, NY, when its earnings report missed on the low side of analyst expectations, marking the 14th straight quarter for which the enterprise tech developer has reported falling revenues.