Big Tech &
Another New Tesla Semi Prototype Spotted in California (2 minute read)
A new Tesla Semi truck prototype has been spotted in Truckee, CA. The engineering has been completed on the truck and some production models are scheduled for late 2021. There are some differences on the back of the cab on this prototype compared to other previously seen versions of the vehicle. It could be the first of several new prototypes. Images of the Semi are available in the article.
Here’s a first look at Microsoft’s xCloud for the web (2 minute read)
Microsoft employees are now testing a web version of xCloud ahead of a public preview. xCloud allows Xbox players to access their games through a browser. It is unknown what resolution Microsoft will be streaming games at, but full 4K streaming won't be supported until later this year. Microsoft is planning to bundle the web version of xCloud into the PC version of the Xbox app on Windows 10. A public preview of xCloud via the web is planned for sometime in Spring.
Clean-Energy, No-Cost Skylight Makes Seawater Drinkable (2 minute read)
The Solar Desalination Skylight stores the sun's energy during the day to light homes at night. It also distills seawater into drinking water, allowing the owners of the skylight to use a tap at the base to pour water. The leftover brine from the process is used to generate an electrical charge to power a diffused light. The design is cheap and solves two key issues faced by the inhabitants of shantytowns. It is one of six finalists of the Lexus Design Award 2021.
Scientists accidentally discover life 900m under Antarctic ice (3 minute read)
Researchers have found sea sponges and several potentially undiscovered species living 900 meters below an Antarctic ice shelf. The creatures were living in complete darkness in temperatures of -2.2 degrees Celsius. They were found by geologists as they were drilling for sediment samples. The drilling site was 260 km away from open water, so it is a mystery where the creatures were obtaining food for survival.
Programming, Design & Data Science
github.🏄♂️ (GitHub Repo)
github.🏄♂️ opens up GitHub pages in a browser-based VS code environment and allows developers to easily explore code on GitHub. It can be activated by replacing '.com' with '.surf' on GitHub, by using the Chrome browser extension, or through CLI. Examples are provided in the repository.
ARLOOPA is an AR visualization tool that allows users to place virtual content into real environments. It can be used to create interactive experiences. Brands can use the app to grow their business with immersive ads and promotions. A short video explaining how the app works is available on the site.
Pigs Can Game, Scientists Discover (5 minute read)
Scientists have confirmed that pigs can game. Four pigs showed a remarkable ability to play a joystick-operated video game originally developed by NASA to test monkeys. The pigs were trained on how to use a joystick and then they gamed once a day for 12 weeks. They had to stop the study as some of the pigs had grown too large to stand long enough to complete the sessions. Each pig had its own individual aptitude for the tasks. Positive encouragement from their caretakers resulted in better outcomes in the game. A picture of a pig on one of the gaming consoles is available in the article.