Robert Taylor, Internet Pioneer, RIP

A man who played a key role in the development of the Internet has died. Robert Taylor, who arguably conceived ARPANET, was 85. Taylor brought together two sets of existing work and ideas at ARPANET, a network at the US Defense Department’s Advanced Research Projects Agency. The idea of a computer network joining together multiple […]

Museum Displays Thousand-Year GIF

A Finnish museum plans to display an animated GIF for the next thousand years. Its title, As Long As Possible, acknowledges that may be a stretch. The GIF at Kiasma’s Museum of Contemporary Art is the work of artist Juha van Ingen and is designed to celebrate both the 100th anniversary of Finnish independence and […]

Space Flight Boss: No Bathroom On Board

The boss of a planned space tourism service says there’ll be no toilets or sick bags on the flight. But Jeff Bezos says neither should be needed. Bezos, who made his fortune from Amazon, now runs Blue Origin. It plans to run flights for six passengers that cross the Karman line that lies around 62 […]

Cellphone Voice Call Ban Continues For US Flights

The FCC looks set to continue a ban on voice calls by cellphone users on planes. The commission had previously considered dropping the ban on the grounds it was outdated and increased costs for passengers. Chairman Ajit Pai has formerly proposed ditching a 2013 plan to eventually allow cellphone calls. That proposal will need a […]

Apple Dubbed Most Accurate For Battery Life Claims

A consumer group says many laptops it tested had battery lives around half those advertised by manufacturers. The difference may well come down to “real world” use vs generous lab testing conditions. Which?, a UK group similar to the US’s Consumer Reports, gathered together data from its tests of 67 models over the past year. […]

Elon Musk Wants Wireless Brain-Computer Connection

Elon Musk is working on a program to wirelessly connect human brains and computers. Potential purposes include boosting brains with artificial intelligence and tackling neurodegenerative conditions. Musk plans to detail his new company, Neuralink, some time next week. What’s already known is that it will be based around neural lace, the concept of implanting electrodes […]

Samsung To Brick Remaining Note 7s Remotely

Samsung is to remotely disable the remaining Note 7 handsets that the most devoted users have refused to return under a safely recall. One of the hottest phones of last year turned out to be too hot to handle after a string of handsets overheated and even caught fire. Independent reports blamed attempts to make […]

Commercial Electric Flights By 2027 Claims Start-Up

A would-be aircraft manufacturer says it will run electrically-powered flights within a decade. Wright Electric says it would be able to carry 150 passengers on short-haul flights up to 300 miles, with London to Paris the initial route. Electric planes already exist, reaching up to 200 miles per hour, but existing models usually carry only […]

Oxford University AI Excels At Lip-Reading

A computer program can lip-read four times more accurately than a human expert according to Oxford University researchers. They worked with Google’s DeepMind project to develop an AI system named Watch, Attend and Spell. The project involved a neural network using image recognition tools to analyse 5,000 hours of TV news footage making up 118,000 […]

Patriot Missile Shoots Down Quadcopter Drone

An ally of the US has used a Patriot missile to shoot down a small quadcopter. A US general revealed the incident but noted it’s not exactly an economical tactic. The Patriot missile system has been in use since 1984 but came to prominence during the first Gulf War. It’s primarily designed to use radar […]

Chrome To Throttle Background Tabs

Google says it will limit the amount of processing power that background tabs can consume in Chrome. The change is designed to increase battery life on mobile devices without affecting usability too much. It builds upon an existing policy that means any background tab can only carry out actions (such as reloading data) once a […]

Washing Machine Gets Curry Mode

Panasonic has made a washing machine for India that has a dedicated button for cleaning curry stains. It’s one of five custom cycles on the machine designed to meet the specific stains that Indian customers said were often not removed by washing machines. The others cover hair oils, sauces, general sweat, and tide marks on […]