This Weeks News
- AI: Tesla to roll out fully self driving cars that still need your attention this year!
- COMPUTING: Energizer says hold my beer, creates hilarious battery brick with screen
- COMPUTING: USB-IF has mental breakdown, renames everything to make it more confusing
- CRYPTO: Bitcoin’s Lightning network gets an awesome new GUI – Spark
- NANOTECH: Mad scientists inject nanoparticles into mice and give them infrared vision
- ROBOTICS: MIT throws down challenge to Boston Dynamics, makes back flipping cheetah
- SPACE: SpaceX launches its new Dragon capsule and successfully auto docks to ISS
- TRANSPORT: Tesla finally launches their $35,000 USD Model 3! Wooo!
- TRANSPORT: Tesla drops price of Model S P100D in Australia by over $90,000!
- SECURITY: Facebook’s releases new feature to help scammers breach all your accounts!
We believe that everyone’s future can be richer, happier and more efficient, but you can’t embrace that future unless you take the first most crucial step, being informed of it.
Welcome to The Tipping Point, news from the most critical future industries curated for you every week so you can stay informed and prepared. No need to waste hours everyday researching, stay on top of it all with one post and then get back to doing what you do best.
The Tipping point is named after the point at which a new technology goes from being disappointing, expensive and buggy to exciting, exponential, cheap and mainstream. This point of change often sneaks up on and surprises everyone including industry experts!
No matter if you’re personally employed in the industry or just a lurker, The Tipping Point is vital to staying up to date and being ready to transition smoothly rather than getting caught off guard.
Tesla announced that they’re going to be rolling out updates to their Autopilot system sometime this year to “recognize and respond to traffic lights and stop signs”. This should mean you’ll be able to turn it on and drive virtually everywhere driveway to freeway and back again all automatically… at least while you continue to hold the steering wheel and monitor it at all times. Baby steps but steps none the less!
We all want our phones to last longer but with Apple et al all vying to make them as thin as possible (despite pretty much everyone all agreeing phones are totally thin enough) batteries always take a hit. You’re phone is 4 mm thin!… and has a battery that lasts 4 hours to boot but Energizer is saying no more!
They’ve gone ahead and created the worlds first 18,000 mAh phone. At this point we should really just be calling it a “18 A” phone but either way it’s absurd. Coming in at the thickness of 3 normal phones its specs aren’t actually too bad, especially the 50 days of standby time. Still no head phone jack though…
Are you confused about USB 1.0 vs 2.0 vs 3.0 vs 3.1? You should be! Hell, most manufacturers of USB things are so confused they constantly get their ads wrong as I noted a long time ago in my Ultimate Guide To USB And USB Type-C piece. Thankfully the people that design and certify the USB standard (USB-IF) have had a further mental break down and decided to screw up the naming standard even more. USB 3.1 Gen 1 is now USB 3.2 Gen 1. USB 3.1 Gen 2 is now USB 3.2 Gen 2 and a new 20 Gbps USB spec is called USB 3.2 Gen 2.2. Yeah… the entire tech community has performed a unified face palm at the sheer idiocy of it all.
Bitcoins fantastic for unstoppable transactions that no one can censor or take back but its fees are high and its transaction times slow. Enter the Lightning network to add a little bit more complexity but drastically reduce that transaction time to mere seconds whilst at the same time reducing the fees to near zero. Most people aren’t too jazzed about buying their daily coffee with Unix command line though which is why Sparks new GUI is glorious! Simple, fast, open source and support for web, Android and iOS soon. Check it out!
Want thermal or night vision? Don’t mind having an injection in your eyes? Well the very not mad scientists at the University of Science and Technology of China have successfully enabled mice to see infrared light by injecting nanoparticles into their eyes. These nanoparticles bind to the rods and cones on the eyes retina. When infrared light enters the eyes they absorb it and then re-emit visible light that the mouses normal rods and cones respond to. “This is an exciting subject because the technology we made possible here could eventually enable human beings to see beyond our natural capabilities,”
MIT’s new mini cheetah robot is springy and light on its feet, with a range of motion that rivals a champion gymnast. The four-legged power pack can bend and swing its legs wide, enabling it to walk either right-side up or upside down. The robot can also trot over uneven terrain about twice as fast as an average person’s walking speed. Perhaps most impressive is its ability to perform a 360-degree back flip from a standing position. Researchers claim the mini cheetah is designed to be “virtually indestructible,” recovering with little damage, even if a back flip ends in a spill. There’s even a cool video of it trotting around and doing its flips.
After launching the day before SpaceX’s new Crew Dragon capsule has autonomously docked to the ISS. This critical part of its test flight is something that it will need to do all the time once it’s flying real humans into space. The Stage 1 Falcon 9 booster also managed a flawless landing on their drone ship and you can check out the full Crew-1 launch on their YouTube channel here.
That’s right, what many said would never happen is now the reality we live in. You can buy a $35,000 USD Tesla Model 3… assuming you’re in America that is. Check out their online configurator here for more info but there are now 5 separate versions of the Model 3 all with varying power, range and specs. This is fantastic news for all EV enthusiasts and quite frankly very troubling for any other car manufacturer.
For a straight up apples to apples comparison here in Australia people are estimating the base Model 3 Standard that does 0-100 km/h in 5.6 seconds and costs about $10 AUD per “tank” should come in at around $55,000 AUD drive away. BMW’s comparable base model, the BMW 318i, costs around $63,000 AUD drive away and only manages a poultry 0-100 km/h time of 9.1 seconds. I wonder how long it’s going to take for word to get out that Tesla EV’s are now not only faster, cheaper to maintain and run, provide a safer environment, have better infotainment and upgradability abilities but now also cost less.
Hot on the heels of their Model 3 announcement Tesla also completely revamped all their pricing and Model S/X line ups. Renaming everything to no longer include battery sizes they also made huge cuts to the prices. If you were looking to buy one now looks like the perfect time as both the top level Model S and X Performance cars are now more than $90,000 AUD cheaper. The price reductions are so ridiculous some of their customers are protesting. Yes, you read that right. Their customers are protesting them decreasing prices… first world problems I guess!
Got a Facebook account? Of course you do. Like scammers having easy access to your personal mobile number? Of course you do… wait. That’s right, Facebook has created yet another huge security hole with more of their notorious privacy leaking “features”. Make sure you have a quick read of this article and double check your Facebook privacy settings as described. Better yet, delete your phone number off Facebook or just delete your entire account.
Have a great week and see you next week for more news!
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