Monthly Archives: September 2017

Vehicle Could One Day Be Your Uber

With every passing year, we grow more disappointed by the fact that science fiction hasn’t come true, and we still aren’t riding around in flying cars. But maybe it’s time to re-evaluate what a flying car would actually look like.

German startup Volocopter (formerly E-Volo) has been developing drone-like VTOL (vertical takeoff and landing) vehicles for the better part of a decade, and this week at CES, the electric-powered Volocopter 200VC took its first autonomous flight in North America at CES in Las Vegas. During Intel CEO Brian Krzanich’s keynote address, Volocopter CEO Florian Reuter joined him onstage to announce a partnership between the two companies and kick off the flight demonstration.

Last year, automotive corporation Daimler invested $30 million in Volocopter after a succesful test flight in Dubai and the launch of an autonomous air taxi testing program with the city.

The partnership with Intel serves to bolster Volocopter’s safety and data processing.

Volocopter is not the only air taxi at CES. Workhorse Group is also showcasing its SureFly “octocopter” at the show, and Bell Helicopter unveiled an “air taxi” in partnership with Uber.

Some Surprising Facts About Wikipedia

While bosses and teachers might dub it as an unreliable website, Wikipedia’s popularity is undeniable. Today, Wikipedia has 299 different language versions, more than 32.5 million active editors and an average 600 new articles a day just on the English Wikipedia site. It’s safe to say, since its launch in January 2001 by tech entrepreneurs Jimmy Wales and Larry Sanger, Wikipedia has shaken up the internet.

Quickly rising to prominence, Wikipedia was one of the first user-generated online encyclopedias where people from the general public could become editors and contribute content.

From Wikipedia theme songs to celebrations, here are 15 facts about Wikipedia that you probably didn’t know.

“I’ve seen robots do much more complicated things than these ones are doing now,” a tech worker named Adam told The Daily Beast. “So I’m a little underwhelmed. You look at stuff on YouTube, I mean robots can operate on your brain and do really precise things now. These are a little too mechanical.”

That’s a good thing. After all, stripping is one of the few industries that hasn’t been impacted by automation.

Robot Strippers for CES

Let’s just get this out of the way: most women do not want to go to a strip club, especially during a business conference.

But, that’s the intent behind Sapphire Las Vegas’s introduction of — we’re really in the future now — robot strippers to its stage during this year’s CES.

“We were looking for something creative to do during CES that would sort of match what was happening in town,” Sapphire Managing Partner Peter Feinstein told The Daily Beast in an article with the excellent headline, “Do Androids Cry After Stripping in Vegas for CES?”

He continued, “If you’re six people from a company and there’s two women and four guys, you can still [come] here and have some fun and see the robots and not feel like you have to be part of a strip club.”

It’s clear Sapphire doesn’t take the whole thing too seriously. The club placed buckets for tips near the robots that read “MIT bound” and “Need money for batteries.”

Of course, launching a stunt such as this around an expo is usually a surefire way to get media attention. But, it’s also a smart strategy to come up with new things to appeal to potential new customers. CES attendees are in town to check out the latest technology, and may not want to spend the time gawking at scantily dressed women. This is giving customers what they want.

That is, if what they want are female-figured robots with security cameras for heads shaking their robutts. (The robots were created by an artist named Giles Walker as a statement on voyeurism.)

The plan seems to have been on target. After all, people weren’t offended. Instead, they wanted more advanced stripper robots.

“I’ve seen robots do much more complicated things than these ones are doing now,” a tech worker named Adam told The Daily Beast. “So I’m a little underwhelmed. You look at stuff on YouTube, I mean robots can operate on your brain and do really precise things now. These are a little too mechanical.”

That’s a good thing. After all, stripping is one of the few industries that hasn’t been impacted by automation.