Big Tech &
Amazon announces its first fully autonomous mobile warehouse robot (3 minute read)
Amazon has unveiled Proteus, its first fully autonomous mobile robot. The robot is designed to move large carts throughout Amazon's warehouses. It can safely navigate around humans. Proteus robots feature advanced safety, perception, and navigation technology. A video of the robot stopping when a human steps in front of it is available in the article. Amazon also announced a robotic arm that can lift and move packages and a camera system that can scan barcodes.
Scientists Are Getting Better and Better at Levitating Objects With Sound Waves (2 minute read)
A new video shows researchers making polystyrene beads and water particles levitate inside a special enclosure using hundreds of small speakers. The team was able to develop a system that could handle interference, resulting in 3D displays that can exist outside of a vacuum. The technology opens up the possibility for fully immersive virtual reality experiences and interactive holograms. A video demonstrating the technology is available in the article.
EU gives millions to start-up developing 550km/h maglev rail (1 minute read)
Nevomo is a railway technology startup that claims it can turn existing tracks into magnetic levitation rails. The company has received a €2.5 million grant and may get more funding from the EU's European Innovation Council. Preparations for a full-scale test of its system began in summer 2021. Its system is currently able to operate at speeds of up to 550kph, but the company's goal is to eventually develop hyperloop-style transport systems that can travel at up to 1,200kph.
Programming, Design & Data Science
GitHub Copilot is generally available to all developers (3 minute read)
GitHub Copilot is now generally available to individual developers. Developers can get a 60-day free trial, after which the service will be billed at $10 per calendar month or $100 per year. Verified students and maintainers of popular open source projects will be able to use GitHub Copilot for free. GitHub Copilot will be available for companies later this year.
Does Bionic Reading actually work? Test for yourself! (9 minute read)
Bionic Reading is a typographical technology that is supposed to increase reading speed. It involves bolding the first few letters of each word. The system claims to deliver faster reading speed with no loss of comprehension. A study of the system found that Bionic Reading slightly increased reading speed, but there was not enough evidence to suggest that the difference in reading speed was significant. It also lowered comprehension. A link for readers to test out Bionic Reading for themselves is available at the end of the article.
Meta, Microsoft, NVIDIA, Unity and others form Metaverse Standards Forum (2 minute read)
Meta, Microsoft, Epic Games, Adobe, Nvidia, Sony, Unity, and other companies have joined together to form the Metaverse Standards Forum, a group that aims to drive open interoperability in the metaverse. The forum is free to join and it will focus on projects like hackathons and open-source tooling. The group sees the upcoming metaverse as an interconnected system that will need standards, norms, and rules for it to operate everywhere. It is led by the Khronos Group, a nonprofit that tried to set a standard for VR APIs in 2016.