Big Tech &
Blue Origin announces plans for a commercial space station (3 minute read)
Blue Origin is working on creating a space station with Sierra Space. Orbital Reef will be an industrial and commercial hub, offering services like space transportation and logistics, space habitation, equipment accommodation, and operations including onboard crew. It will be habitable for up to 10 people and feature an open system that will enable any customer or nation to use it. Orbital Reef will start operations in the second half of this decade.
Toyota's New Hydrogen-Powered Vehicles Just Hit the Race Tracks (2 minute read)
Toyota has fitted racing cars with hydrogen combustion engines to test the feasibility of the technology for use in commercial vehicles. The technology still suffers from limitations regarding range, and some big names in the automotive industry have criticized its use in cars. Japan's government has strongly backed the use of hydrogen. Toyota set a world record in June by driving a hydrogen-fueled vehicle 623 miles on one tank of hydrogen fuel.
150 mph without a driver: Indy autonomous cars gear up for race (3 minute read)
Nine autonomous vehicles took part in the Indy Autonomous Challenge recently. The vehicles raced separately with a $1 million prize on the line. Each team, made up of students from around the world, was given the same model car and equipment. The teams programmed the code to control the vehicles, pushing them to their limits. The aim of the challenge was to increase trust in autonomous technology by proving that it can work in extreme conditions.
Programming, Design & Data Science
LittleJS (GitHub Repo)
Flatmap (GitHub Repo)
Flatmap is a tool that generates Mapbox Vector Tiles from geographic data sources like OpenStreetMap. It packages tiles into files that can be served using tools like TileServer GL or even queried directly from the browser. A live demo is available.
What we can learn from “_why”, the long lost open source developer (8 minute read)
_why was a prolific member of the Ruby community in the 00s. He mixed his art into programming and his programming into art and was everywhere online until he disappeared in August 2009. While his work has been maintained by others, it's not clear how much of his original code remains. This article tells the story of _why and the impact he had on the programming world.
Mastercard will allow banks on its payments network to provide cryptocurrency services (2 minute read)
MasterCard has signed a deal with cryptocurrency firm Bakkt to make crypto options available to merchants and banks across its payments network. Banks on the network will be able to provide cryptocurrency rewards on credit and debit cards. Consumers will be able to convert their crypto to pay for purchases and hold digital assets through wallets on Bakkt's platform. The deal could significantly expand access to and adoption of cryptocurrencies, with more than 22,000 banks and financial institutions on the MasterCard network.