GM will make an autonomous car without steering wheel or pedals by 2019

GM will make an autonomous car without steering wheel or pedals by 2019

General Motors plans to mass-produce self-driving cars that lack traditional controls like steering wheels and pedals by 2019, the company announced today. Its a bold declaration for the future of driving from one of the country’s Big Three automakers, and one that is sure to shake things up for the industry as the annual Detroit Auto Show kicks off next week.

The car will be the fourth generation of its driverless, all-electric Chevy Bolts, which are currently being tested on public roads in San Francisco and Phoenix. And when they roll off the assembly line of GM’s manufacturing plant in Orion, Michigan, they’ll be deployed as ride-hailing vehicles in a number of cities.

“It’s a pretty exciting moment in the history […]

AMD is releasing Spectre firmware updates to fix CPU vulnerabilities

AMD is releasing Spectre firmware updates to fix CPU vulnerabilities

AMD’s initial response to the Meltdown and Spectre CPU flaws made it clear “there is a near zero risk to AMD processors.” That zero risk doesn’t mean zero impact, as we’re starting to discover today. “We have defined additional steps through a combination of processor microcode updates and OS patches that we will make available to AMD customers and partners to further mitigate the threat,” says Mark Papermaster , AMD’s chief technology officer.

AMD is making firmware updates available for Ryzen and EPYC owners this week, and the company is planning to update older processors “over the coming weeks.” Like Intel, these firmware updates will be provided to PC makers, and it will be up to suppliers to ensure customers […]

This Robot Will Build Homes on Mars for Future Humans

This Robot Will Build Homes on Mars for Future Humans

Mars Robot Mars is the next frontier, and humans are grooming robots to make sure the next generation are comfortable there. Humans on the red planet will require the services of specialists with an overabundance of knowledge, along with the ability to keep up with pressure.

Yes, we’re talking about robots, one in particular that goes by the name, Justin. The robot is being developed by the German Aerospace Center, also known as DLR, and one of the main purposes is to build houses on Mars for future settlers . Source: Wikimedia Justin is pretty slick

We understand that for over a decade, engineers have been refining Justin’s physical capabilities. For now, the Justin robots can handle tools, catch objects, […]

Robot subs are uncovering what makes underwater volcanoes blow

Robot subs are uncovering what makes underwater volcanoes blow

The remotely operated vehicle Jason (which is about the size of a large car), landing on the seafloor at Havre submarine volcano at 900 meters below sea level A pair of autonomous underwater vehicles have helped uncover details of the biggest undersea eruption of the century. The daring mission is helping to unlock the mysteries of a rarely-seen event and shed further light on underwater volcanism.

Guided by top volcanologists from the University of Tasmania, Australia, the vehicles plunged 650 meters below sea level to map the ocean floor, shedding light on a an eruption that occurred in 2002.

That eruption, of the Havre Seamount off the coast of New Zealand, released 400 square kilometres of porous volcanic rock, some of […]

Amazon drives a fifth city-shaping retail revolution

Amazon drives a fifth city-shaping retail revolution

As possibly the world’s oldest economic activity, retailing didn’t venture away from the traditional street, with its congestion, grime and weather exposure, until about 1800. This resulted in new types of retail space, including enclosed shopping arcades and freestanding or anchor department stores. These are still evident in cities today.

It helps to visualise the evolution of modern retail activity and structures in terms of five broad revolutionary cycles. Each has lasted about 50 years, as shown in the diagram below. Revolutionary cycles and disruptive innovations. After the first industrial revolution of the late 18th and early 19th century, two industrial revolutions followed, from about 1850 to 1900, and then from 1900 to 1950. A consumer revolution began about 1950. […]

Terrorism and UAVs: an increasing risk

Terrorism and UAVs: an increasing risk

Violent non-state actors have increasingly been making use of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs). Initially, this was limited to intelligence, surveillance, target acquisition, and reconnaissance (ISTAR) missions. More recently, some terrorist organizations – among them, the Islamic State and Hezbollah – have extended their use of UAVs to include the deployment of Improvised Explosive Devices (IED) in warzones. Now, the threat of UAVs being used in attacks in Europe or North America is rising.

Since 2001, the war on terror has witnessed the gradual emergence of a new weapons system: the Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV). Efficacy, affordability, and low political costs have increasingly made UAVs the weapon of choice against violent non-state actors. Simultaneously, commercial UAVs – considerably smaller and […]