Big Tech &
Android 12 developer preview is available now with many under-the-hood updates (6 minute read)
The developer preview for Android 12 is now available for Pixel devices. Android 12 updates how the OS handles images, videos, and future security updates. The developer preview is full of developer-facing changes and it is likely nowhere near ready for day-to-day use. Many UI changes will not be included until after the Google I/O conference. The official release isn't expected until after August this year.
Apple Hiring Engineers to Develop 6G Wireless (3 minute read)
Apple recently posted job ads looking for wireless system research engineers for current and next-generation networks. The people hired for the positions will research and design 5G wireless communication systems for radio access networks. 6G isn't expected to be rolled out until around 2030, but Apple wants to be involved in the earliest stages of development. Apple currently relies heavily on Qualcomm for its 5G modems. It started development on its first custom modem last year.
Researchers explore using light to levitate discs in the mesosphere (3 minute read)
Researchers from the University of Pennsylvania have levitated thin discs in conditions that mimic the atmosphere high above the Earth's surface using laser light. The mesosphere is a part of the atmosphere at approximately 50 to 80 kilometers above the surface, and the ability to send sensors into that range would allow for monitoring airflow and could improve weather predictions. Those altitudes are too thin for airplanes to fly and too thick for satellites and rockets to make long-duration flights. The levitation is caused by heat created as the laser makes contact with the discs. A video explaining the experiment is available in the article.
Scientists Achieve Real-Time Communication With Lucid Dreamers In Breakthrough (3 minute read)
A team of international researchers has achieved real-time dialogues with people during lucid dreams. The participants in the study responded correctly to questions while in rapid-eye-movement sleep. About 18 percent of the trials in the study resulted in clear and accurate communication from the dreamers, while 60 percent didn't provoke any responses. Many participants were able to recall the interactions after they woke up. Further research will probe the possibilities of two-way communication with lucid dreamers.
Programming, Design & Data Science
Dapr (GitHub Repo)
Dapr is a portable, serverless, event-driven runtime for building resilient, stateless, and stateful microservices that run on the cloud. It codifies best practices for building microservice applications into building blocks to enable development with the language and framework of your choice. Dapr can transition seamlessly between platforms and underlying implementations without rewriting any code.
I Am a Heroin User. I Do Not Have a Drug Problem (12 minute read)
Carl Hart, a neuroscientist and Ziff Professor of Psychology at Columbia University, says that the media's sensationalistic coverage of the opioid crisis exploits ignorance and fear to vilify certain members of society. More than 70 percent of drug users do not meet the health criteria for drug addiction. A typical drug user is likely to be a responsible professional who uses drugs for many reasons. This interview with Hart discusses the opioid crisis, drug use, addiction, and how society's views on drugs should be reviewed.
NASA's Mars rover successfully touches down on the red planet (5 minute read)
Perseverance successfully landed on Mars on Thursday at around 3:55 PM ET. It is the fifth rover to land on Mars. The rover will now begin its two-year mission to roam the surface of the planet and search for signs of ancient microbial life. It will spend the next few days taking pictures of the Jezero Crater, where it landed. Jezero's lakebed is one of the best places to look for biosignatures. The rover is also carrying Ingenuity, a small helicopter, which could be the first controlled aircraft on another planet. Earlier this month, spacecraft launched from the United Arab Emirates and China reached Mars and moved into orbit around the planet.