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Rubbing along with robots tackles Abe's double dilemma

File photo of humanoid robots working side by side with employees in the assembly line at a factory of Glory Ltd., a manufacturer of automatic change dispensers, in Kazo, north of TokyoBy Leika Kihara and Kaori Kaneko TOKYO (Reuters) - Factory worker Satomi Iwata has new co-workers, a troupe of humanoid automata that are helping to address two of Japan's most pressing concerns - a shortage of labor and a need for growth. The 19 robots, which cost her employer Glory Ltd about 7.4 million yen ($60,000) each, have eye-like sensors and two arms that assemble made-to-order change dispensers alongside their human colleagues in a factory employing 370. Glory is in the vanguard as Japanese firms ramp up spending on robotics and automation, responding at last to premier Shinzo Abe's efforts to stimulate the economy and end two decades of stagnation and deflation.

07/04/2015 09:06 PM

Minecraft celebrities draw record crowd to gaming

Child plays video game Minecraft at the Minecon convention in LondonNot for them the rock stars or sporting heroes, but video gamers who have won millions of global followers piling up blocks in the Minecraft virtual world and who came to London for the Minecon convention on July 4 and 5. The 10,000 tickets sold made it the largest ever such event for a single video game. The fact those tickets cost 129 pounds ($200) was a sign of what big business Minecraft has become.

07/04/2015 04:07 PM

Canadian judge rejects request for injunction against Uber
An Ontario court on Friday rejected the city of Toronto's request for an injunction to halt Uber's operations in Canada's largest city. Judge Sean Dunphy dismissed the application and said there was no evidence the company operates as a taxi broker, according to a copy of the ruling provided by Uber. "We are pleased with today’s ruling, which confirms that ridesharing is a new business model, distinct from traditional taxi services," Ian Black, general manager for Uber Canada, said in a statement.
07/04/2015 12:35 AM

UberPOP halts service in France after clampdown, protests

A leaflet which reads "Uber go home" is seen on a taxi as striking French taxi drivers block the traffic on the Paris ring road during a national protest against car-sharing service Uber, in ParisBy Mark John PARIS (Reuters) - Uber Technologies will suspend its UberPOP ride-hailing service in France, the U.S. company said on Friday, after it faced sometimes-violent protests and local authorities denounced it as an illegal taxi service. After fierce protests last week by licensed French taxi drivers who argue it threatens their livelihood with unfair competition, France took two executives from California-based Uber into custody and said they will face trial in September. France's legal clampdown was the latest setback for Uber in Europe.

07/03/2015 08:50 AM

Stick-on smart sensor offers hassle-free car hire
DropTag Drive, from development firm Cambridge Consultants, is a small tag that is fixed to the inside of a car's windshield and continually monitors all vehicle accelerations and impacts during the hire period. The technology is based on an existing condition monitoring device that was developed by Cambridge Consultants to track a parcel's location if it was damaged at any time in transit.
07/03/2015 11:52 AM

Solar-powered plane lands in Hawaii, pilot sets nonstop record

Swiss pilot Piccard takes a selfie in the Solar Impulse 2 plane during the 6th leg of the round the world trip from Chongqing to Nanjing(Reuters) - A Swiss man attempting to circumnavigate the globe with an aircraft powered only by the sun's energy landed in Hawaii on Friday, after a record-breaking five-day nonstop solo flight across the Pacific Ocean from Japan. The Solar Impulse 2 is the first aircraft to fly day and night without any fuel. Pilot Andre Borschberg's 120-hour voyage shattered the 76-hour record for nonstop flight by late American adventurer Steve Fossett in 2006 on the Virgin Atlantic Global Flyer.

07/03/2015 01:23 PM

How many iPhones does it take to stop a bullet?

How many iPhones does it take to stop a bullet?Can a stack of iPhones protect a Samsung Galaxy S6 from a blast fired from a Russian assault rifle? You'll just have to watch and see.

07/05/2015 02:11 PM

Petition for Pao resignation from Reddit grows to 130K

Petition for Pao resignation from Reddit grows to 130KPetition organizers say they fear Pao's leadership is fostering a "new age of censorship" will destroy community-curated news site.

07/05/2015 01:33 PM

On 9th day, Kerry says Iran nuke talks could go either way

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry informs the media in front of Palais Coburg where closed-door nuclear talks with Iran take place in Vienna, Austria, Sunday, July 5, 2015. (AP Photo/Ronald Zak)VIENNA (AP) — Nine days into marathon nuclear talks, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry on Sunday said the diplomatic efforts "could go either way," cutting off all potential pathways for an Iranian atomic bomb or ending without an agreement that American officials have sometimes described as the only alternative to war.

07/05/2015 01:17 PM

I, robot, take this other robot to be my wedded wife

I, robot, take this other robot to be my wedded wifeHere comes the robot bride, all dressed in white. The first ever robot wedding takes place in Japan between humanoid robot Yukirin and slightly-less-humanoid bot Frois.

07/05/2015 01:07 PM

Scanner Pro 6 simplifies scanning documents with your iPhone

Scanner Pro 6 simplifies scanning documents with your iPhoneIf you need to scan a document these days, you're often presented with two choices: find an actual scanner (good luck), or use your phone's camera. The newest version of the Scanner Pro app, which came out this week for iOS users, suffers none of those problems and even offers a few clever options that make scanning documents even easier. Scanner Pro 6 is a really good scanning app at the most basic level.

07/05/2015 01:00 PM

Don't battle the Terminator T-800, own one

Don't battle the Terminator T-800, own one"​Terminator: Genisys" is out, and so, soon, will be a life-size Terminator T-800 endoskeleton bust. Because nothing says shabby Skynet chic like a killer robot on the fireplace mantle.

07/05/2015 12:55 PM

Dartmouth contests showcase computer-generated creativity

In this Jan. 20, 2015 photo provided by Dartmouth College, Dan Rockmore, director of the Neukom Institute for Computational Science, poses on the Dartmouth campus in Hanover, N.H. Dartmouth is seeking artificial intelligence algorithms that create “human-quality” short stories, sonnets and dance music sets that will be pitted against human-produced literature, poetry and music selections. Rockmore, a mathematics and computer science professor, spun off the idea for the contests from his experience riding a stationary bike. He started thinking about how the music being played during his spin class helped him pedal at the right the pace, and he was surprised when the instructor told him he selected the songs without the help of computer software. (Dartmouth College via AP)CONCORD, N.H. (AP) — Can an algorithm pass for an author? Can a robot rock the house? A series of contests at Dartmouth College is about to find out.

07/05/2015 12:35 PM

This Month in Luxury: NFC-powered bottle service

This Month in Luxury: NFC-powered bottle serviceDom Pérignon and Armand de Brignac are flowing freely in VIP as usual, but your palate is demanding something a bit more exclusive to sip on. Enter Rémy Martin. The company has partnered with Selinko to create the world's first NFC-connected bottle, called the Rémy Martin Club Connected Bottle.

07/05/2015 12:00 PM

Business value of container technology: a subject that deserves more discussion

Business value of container technology: a subject that deserves more discussionMany technologists love container technologies. How does this love translate into business value? 'Your boss doesn't lose sleep at night over how many lines of code it takes to automate a VM.'

07/05/2015 11:05 AM

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