Wednesday, 25 May 2016

A New In-Ear Devices Promises a Future Devoid of Language Barriers

Instant language translation devices have only been the element of the science fiction literature and cinema. For a long time we have been waiting for such a kind of device which can help in erasing the language barrier. As of now, we have speech recognition and translation technology which does the job fairly well but it means you must have working internet connectivity. Near real-time translation has improved immensely recently due to effort of the Apple, Google and other tech companies but we can’t still convert the videos or audios directly to other language. Over the years, a number of rumors have emerged regarding a so called GoogleX super project which is believed to developing a similar kind of language translation device. A new device has been launched named Pilot which will offer near real time language translation in a seamless fashion.

Problems associated with the development language translation devices

Real-time translation is simply hard to perform even for the machines. It has already taken more two decades to come with advanced and respectable translation services and application in the form Google translation and others. But these application and services takes a small amount of information at a time and translates into another language but accuracy is quite questionable in various cases. In simple words to offer real-time and completely error free language translation we will still require the help from the super-computer which won’t be profitable for any consumer at all.

Second major issue while developing real time language translation device is that whether they will require internet connectivity or huge amount of power or not. In order to use translation apps one is required to have working internet subscription as apps use their online data and language repository to translate the texts. Pilot works in its own unique way by wirelessly accessing the cellphone processor in order to perform the translation exercise seamlessly.

Other problems related to creating universal translator are basically revolves around the design concept and practicality of the device. Should the device be kept online at all times or should it remain offline when not required, automatic and manual functionality is also a concern.

The features of Pilot

Pilot isn’t a single earpiece gadget rather it is a two-earpiece gadget. In order to get instant language translation users has to be give one earpiece to other person who speaks a different language and put other in their own ear. Now both the person can start conversing in the language of their own choice and it will be instantly translated by the device. Sin both other earpiece has translator users will be able to understand each and other in the profound manner.

It is still in its nascent stage so there will be some glitches and shortcoming, which means simply putting the device in your ear, wouldn’t turn everyone speaking in your language. However it appears to be highly ambitious device and thus tend to offer better and more refined instant translation than the present services offered by the Microsoft’s Skype and Google translation.

Tuesday, 24 May 2016

FTC and FCC Shine A Light on Mobile Security Updates


Queries Raised on Security Updates on Devices by FTC & FCC

Since the Stagefright bug had been revealed, Google has started issuing monthly security updates for Android with companies like Samsung, LG and Sony dedicated to the program to also issue updates to their Android devices. Some of the queries which the Federal Trade Commission – FTC and the Federal Communications Commission - FCC have raised are – how exactly are these updates moving along, what is the process of deciding which phones tend to get updates, do manufacturers communicate to software developers when there are threatening vulnerabilities?

To seek additional information regarding how they issue security updates to address vulnerabilities in smartphones, tablets together with other mobile devices, the FTC had issued orders to around eight companies and the list of companies were not restricted to Android device manufacturers. The orders had been sent to Apple, BlackBerry, Google, HTC, LG, Microsoft, Motorola and Samsung. The requests for information include topics like `when does a company decides to disclose a susceptibility to consumers, whether companies provide unlocked variants of devices, what security testing procedures should each company follow’ and much more.

Rise in Susceptibilities with Mobile Operating System

The FTC also needs to know how the mobile device companies have responded to each weakness that could end in unauthorized code execution or compromise the confidentiality of consumer data. FCC in a blog post had mentioned that there have been a growing number of susceptibilities linked with mobile operating systems which tend to threaten the safety as well as the reliability of a user’s device that includes Stagefright in the Android operating system that could affect around 1 billion Android devices all over the world.

Yet the way the mobile device manufacturers, OS provider as well as mobile carriers have reacted to vulnerabilities could leave the user defenceless, for long period of time or even indefinitely, according to FCC. According to Google’s second annual Android security report that had been released last month, around 30% of Android devices seemed to be running the older versions of the OS which Google no longer tends to support with security updates.

As for operating system such as Android, the main reason as to why the updates do not tend to reach the consumers is due to carriers. Several of the carriers seem to delay pushing updates for a substantial period of time and generally wait for big operating system updates.

FTC/FCC – Focus on Significant Delays from Device Manufacturers/Carriers

It is said that FCC had send out orders to carriers and in a separate though parallel inquiry. The FTC and FCC intend to focus on the significant delays from device manufacturers as well as carriers in addressing vulnerabilities in order to safeguard consumers from security threats.

If this type of action tends to take place, it would be a boon for Google since it could probably fix Android’s fragmentation problem. Since its launch, security has been an uncomfortable spot for Android and with several manufacturers manufacturing Android devices with their own customization; it has become difficult for Google to control the updates. It has instead been the task of manufacturers to update devices.

Monthly security updates seems to be quite common of late though only for certain devices. Cheaper and older devices are left aside and security seems to be a problem.

Google Patents ‘Sticky’ Cars to Save Pedestrians hit by Driverless Vehicles


Google’s Driverless Cars – Safer than Humans

Google has stated that its driverless cars would be several times safer than humans vividly reducing the millions of road accidents which are seen every year. However, it does not mean that they will not hit someone and many times accidents could be inevitable. Google has patented a design for sticky layer on the front of a car which would tend to defend pedestrians when they get hit by a vehicle. Google’s self-driving vehicles would soon be catching pedestrians like flies which as per the patent granted recently tends to act like flypaper and instead of bodies bouncing off a car and resulting in further injury when hit; they would stay stuck to the vehicle till it slows down and stops.

These vehicles are fitted with sensors, clever lane mapping and networking in order that the vehicles can stay away from obstacles much better than human and also park accurately. The patent reads that `in case of an accident between the vehicle and the pedestrian, injury to the pedestrian takes place not only due to the impact of the vehicle as well as the pedestrian but also by the secondary impact between the pedestrian and the road surface or any other object. The adhesive bonds the pedestrian to the vehicle in order that the pedestrian remains with the vehicle till it stops and is not thrown from the vehicle’.

Work as Human Flypaper

The technology which has been awarded by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office – USPTO tends to work as human flypaper wherein the front bumper, hood and the side panels of the car would be enclosed with the sticky coating. Whenever a pedestrian is hit, the protective layer would break apart and trap the pedestrian and save the person from be sent skywards which could cause injuries.

It is said that the adhesive layer would cover the complete front area of the car, though would itself be underneath a special coating only activated in case of a collision, preventing bugs, leaves and other deposits from getting stuck to the car.Google’s fleet of 57 self-driving cars had covered over 1.5 million autonomous miles and had been involved in many collisions, most of which have been other drivers rear-ending the vehicles.

Bryant Walker Smith, self-driving car expert and Affiliate Scholar with Stanford Law School’s Centre for Internet and Society informed The Mercury News that there is another issue utilising sticky cars – What if the person tends to obscures the view of the driver thereby resulting in them crashing into another surface or vehicle?

Company Has Targeted 2020 for Public

However, Smith admired Google for its solution. He said that the idea that cars need to be safe for people other than the ones in them is the next generation of automotive safety and I applaud anyone for thinking as they should about people outside the vehicle. As a target date for being made available, the company has targeted 2020 for the public though they still tend to have many technical as well as legal challenges to overcome. Apple, Tesla, Uber together with other has been involved in driverless car research with many trials underway in the UK. Members of the public now can sign up to the first trials to be in London.

Saturday, 21 May 2016

Leaks point to two 2016 Moto X phones with modular add ons

Moto X

Leaks reveal that the upcoming Moto X series could up the ante for competitors 

Motorola faced a terrible phase back in 2012 when Android and iPhone won penchant in the market, and Moto failed to compete against the leading manufacturers. However, this international company faced a turning point when Google oversaw the launch of new and improved Moto X series. With Motorola now acquired by Lenovo there are a host of features in the Moto X that is liable to undergo a series of drastic changes. One of the top trends of 2016 is modular phones which is something to be looked forward to with regard to Moto X now.

Some major tweaks are in the offing: 

One of the major revelations is changes to the way looks are likely to undergo tweaks in the Moto X range. One of the major leaks the Moto X range will undergo some serous changes in terms of its look. The flat metal back panel was not much preferred by the Motorola fanatics, and the absence of the Moto dimple made it look even shoddier. Rather, people had expected the Moto X with a panel of curved plastic, leather or wood like finish and hence there has been a re though on this aspect. The dimple was preferred primarily because it allowed a decent finger hold and allowed for a hand held stability.

There was also a leak about the bottom rear panel having connected modular system called amps. Similar accessory attachments have been seen on the LG G5; however the Moto X is slated to be much superior in this respect. This accessory attachment allows one to change from a camera grip to a hi-fi audio module. All in all compared to the G5 the Moto X changes a much more user friendly.

Major enhancements could give competitors a run: 

Reliable sources have disclosed the news that there will be some new and enhanced attachments in the Moto X series. These include a pico projector, extraordinary camera module, optical zooming, and a simple and trendy cover available with the handset itself, stereo speakers, handy battery pack and wide angle camera lens with sturdy case. Leaks have also confirmed that to make it even more user friendly, the accessories can be snapped onto device with any rebooting. The Amps can be fixed onto the rear of the mobile device, and they would be held in place with the help of magnets.

Motorola never fails to surprise its fans, and thus will be launching two different handsets this year will the advanced add-ons. The Moto X Vertex will have Snapdragon 625, 1080p AMOLED, 5.5 inch screen, along with a 3GB Ram. The Moto X Vertex thin will have the flagship 1440p AMOLED, 5.5 inch, a startling 4 GB Ram, and Snapdragon 820. The Vertex thin is super slim, 5.5 mm and thus will have a 2600 mAh battery, however the Vertex will have 3500 mAh and is thicker, 7mm. the latest feature incorporated in both the handsets will be the finger print sensor that will be present on the bottom front of the devices. Even though Vertex comes will 2600 mAh, users can purchase battery Amps for convenience.

Canon's Macro Lens has a Built in Ring Flash


First Macro Lens for EOS M Camera System

The first macro lens for the EOS M camera system, the EF-M 28, f/3.5 Macro IS STM, had been announced by Canon. There are two amazing things regarding Canon’s new EF-M 28mm f/3.5 Macro IS STM lens.
  • It is an EF-M lens for the EOS M mirror less system and Canon has totally neglected EOS M, releasing only five lens when the system had been launched almost four years back, four slow zooms as well as a 22mm f/2 prime. The macro lens of 28mm is said to be the sixth though it has a trick up its sleeve which is not found anywhere in the extensive DSLR lens line-up of Canon. 
  • It essentially has a pretty innovative design. Several of the macro photographers tend to opt for the relatively long focal lengths, in order not to disturb their subject. For stationary objects also, wider macro lenses seem to cast a shadow since one has to get too close. The EF-M 28mm though tends to get around that with a built-in mini ring flash which features two user-controllable `Macro Lites’. One could utilise both or one at a time and adjust the intensity of the lighting. Canon also mentioned that the lens’ tapered shape whenever extended tends to help to avoid shadows.

Eliminates Shadow/Darkness

The tiny MacroLite electronic flash units tend to curve around the front component of the lens, giving the effect of a ring flash, which helps in eliminating shadow and darkness from subjects. Users could also adjust the brightness and opt whether both units are illuminated together or individually.

The new lens is also said to be the first autofocus lens for exchangeable lens cameras which has the potential of focusing from infinity to life-size – 1x, in usual shooting and 1.2x enlargement in Super Macro mode. The other features comprise of the same Hybrid IS system that is found on the Canon EF 100mm f/2.8L Macro IS USM lens to lessen camera shake, a lead screw type STM stepping motor for the purpose of smooth as well as quiet focusing operation while taking videos and an angle of view just like a 45mm standard lens. This enables users to capture videos in near-silence.

Lightweight – 130 g/ Outdoor Trips

The EOS M cameras are lightweight, weighing just 130 g and easy to take it along on outdoor trips. Canon states that the biggest breakthrough of the EOS M is in Canon’s ability to contain an EOS System in a compact body with full compatibility with new and existing EF and EF-S lenses, (with adapters). EOS M is by far the most accessible EOS camera offering the same level of photographic brilliance of a DSLR.

Canon has informed that the new EF-M would be available in June this year from authorized vendors at a price of $299.99. Besides this Canon has also announced the Speedlite 600EX II-RT flash, which is compatible with the majority of EOS cameras. On using the standard AA batteries it tends to increase continuous flash rate by around 1.1 to 1.5 times and up to two times on using the latest Compact Battery Pack CP-E4N.