Big Tech &
China is building a GitHub alternative called Gitee (3 minute read)
Chinese companies have grown due to the technological decoupling between the US and China. Many Chinese companies heavily relied on US-based services and have had to redevelop their own versions. While GitHub is still available in China, the developer community is wary of the effects of political conflict. The Ministry of Industry and Information Technology has chosen Gitee to be China's open-source hosting platform. GitHub has previously hinted at plans at opening a subsidiary in China and Tencent has backed local rival Coding.net.
Spotify creates ‘Alone With Me’ AI experience with The Weeknd (2 minute read)
Spotify has released an AI experience called 'Alone With Me' that allows users to interact with a life-like version of The Weeknd. A link to the experience is available in the article. Users will have to connect their Spotify accounts and it works best if they have a strong listening history of The Weeknd on the service. The Weeknd will talk about highlights from the user's listening data, including things like the most listened to Weeknd song, when the user first started listening to The Weeknd, and more. Spotify has also released an experience centered around Billie Eilish where fans can write a letter to their future selves.
This plane flies itself—we went for a ride (8 minute read)
Commercial airliners already use automation to control planes after takeoff. However, these features still mean that pilots are required to control the plane for takeoff and landing, as well as in some other situations. The pilot's primary role in the air is to take instructions from air traffic control and to adjust the automated system accordingly. Xwing has replaced pilots with ground-based controllers, similar to military drone operators. The system means that pilots can manage many flights from one central base. Xwing is attempting to build an autonomous cargo fleet but it requires licensing and approval from the FAA.
This ailing scientist is trying to save his life by becoming world's first full-fledged cyborg (4 minute read)
Peter Scott-Morgan was diagnosed with Motor Neurone Disease (MND) in 2017. Since then, Scott-Morgan has embarked on a mission to become a cyborg, developing an exoskeleton that he hopes will eventually be able to give him superhuman strength and the ability to communicate while being paralyzed. People with MND eventually become locked inside their bodies, with fully alert minds but unable to move. Scott-Morgan has undergone several surgeries already, including a series of surgeries to reconfigure his digestive system to make the MND more manageable.
Programming, Design & Data Science
Handcrafting your own SVG (6 minute read)
Software-generated code can be far from optimal. Generated SVGs can result in unorganized code that can be more complex than required. This article analyzes the weaknesses of generated SVG code and then teaches the reader how to customize their own SVG images. Using a code-generation tool is always easier and spending some time to modify the output will yield much better results.
Computer Vision (GitHub Repo)
This repository contains examples and best practice guidelines for building computer vision systems. It uses existing state-of-the-art libraries to teach students about computer vision algorithms, neural architectures, and operationalizing these systems. Examples are provided as Jupyter notebooks and common utility functions, using PyTorch as the underlying deep learning library.
Persisting as a solo founder (3 minute read)
Being a solo founder can be difficult and it can take a while to find a rhythm that works without burning out. Patience and perseverance will help with dealing with challenges. Meditation can help with developing the ability to identify negative thought patterns and to deal with overwhelming situations. Breaking down tasks into chunks and attaching reasons for completing tasks can help in reducing procrastination. When working alone, keeping track of tasks and thoughts will help keep your project focused. Keeping in touch with friends and colleagues, and also allowing yourself to enjoy life and hobbies, will help keep you grounded.