Robotics & Automation


Python programming language: Pyboard D-series arrives for MicroPython robots

ZDNet

The new Pyboard D-series micro-controller is now available for purchase at a rather hefty price of £43 ($56), offering developers a low-powered device for running programs created with MicroPython, a stripped-back version of the hugely popular Python 3 programming language. The standout feature of the Pyboard is that it runs MicroPython on bare metal, making Python an operating system for running electronic projects on devices with as little as 16kB of RAM. The software and hardware is the brainchild of UK-based programmer and physicist Damian George, who launched a successful Kickstarter campaign in 2014 to bring to life micro-controllers for making tiny, low-powered robots that can bleep, flash and detect objects. Pyboard micro-controllers are aimed at developers who know Python, the world's third most popular language behind Java and JavaScript, which is sweeping the developer world right now. As opposed to the better-known $10 Raspberry Pi Zero W, which runs on Linux, Pyboards rely on MicroPython for operating system functionality and access to low-level hardware.


The $70,000 smoothie-making ROBOT that can blend drinks in 2 minutes or less

Daily Mail

It's official: you can now add smoothie-making to the increasingly long list of tasks commandeered by robots. A one-armed autonomous robot designed by California-based startup Blendid was recently rolled out at the University of San Francisco and is capable of making a dozen different blended drinks in about two minutes, according to the San Francisco Chronicle. Customers of Blendid's smoothie robot are able to order on their mobile device via the company's app, or at one of several tablet kiosks nearby. An autonomous robot arm is automating the smoothie world, blending customers drinks in 2 minutes or less. Blendid is an automated smoothie-making robot that can whip up an array of drinks in 2 minutes or less.


Robot 'Natural Selection' Recombines Into Something Totally New

WIRED

Worms, mammals, even bees do it. Every living thing on Earth replicates, whether that be asexually (boring) or sexually (fun). Robots do not do it: The machines are steely and very uninterested in reproduction. But perhaps they can learn. Scientists in a fascinating field known as evolutionary robotics are trying to get machines to adapt to the world, and eventually to reproduce on their own, just like biological organisms.


Apple streaming event: New News service asks people to pay for magazines, premium articles and websites

The Independent

Apple has unveiled a complete update to its news offering, known as News, which allows people to pay to subscribe to magazines as well as newspapers. The company suggested that the new service is the best way of reading magazines online, as well as offering a way for news organisations to sell premium subscriptions. People will pay just $9.99 per month and get access to all of the magazines and news organisations available through the app. Subscribing to the various outlets included in the service would cost over $8,000 per month, it said. We'll tell you what's true.


Apple updates TV app so people can watch original shows and host of other channels on iPhones and Macs

The Independent

Apple has announced a complete update for its TV app – as well as changes that will bring it to other company's smart TVs. The update brings the company's new streaming service, known as Apple TV, to all of the supported devices. But it also allows for new ways of watching content from other companies, too, allowing people to watch video from companies such as HBO or Amazon Prime. Unveiling that Apple TV service, it said it had worked with the likes of Steven Spielberg, Reese Witherspoon and Jennifer Aniston among others. We'll tell you what's true.


Apple Arcade: New game subscription service for iPhones, iPads and Mac to 'redefine games'

The Independent

Apple has unveiled its widely-rumoured game subscription service, hailed as the "Netflix of games". Designed for mobile devices, desktop computers and "living room" devices, Apple Arcade, will "redefine games", the tech giant claimed, adding that will be curated on originality, quality and creativity. However, the price and release date still remain a mystery. We'll tell you what's true. You can form your own view.


Apple streaming event sees launch of TV, news and games subscriptions – but few details about how they will work

The Independent

Apple has launched a whole host of new services, intended to make more money from the people who have already bought its products. In what was hailed as one of the most significant Apple events in years, the company did not reveal new products or software but instead a range of premium services, intended to counter a drop in iPhone sales by bringing in revenues after people buy their products. There are news subscriptions, TV and games – as well as a new way to pay for anything, with a titanium credit card. The highlight of the announcement was Apple TV, a streaming service built to compete with Netflix and Amazon Prime Video. Apple invited many of the world's biggest stars and directors on stage to talk about its TV shows, on which the company is thought to have spent billions of dollars.


Huawei P30 Pro leaked images reveal nearly everything about new flagship Android - except the price

The Independent

The world's second biggest smartphone maker is about to unveil its latest range of flagship phones, but an inundation of leaks mean there is little to reveal that is not already known. Huawei will show off the P30, P30 Pro and P30 Lite - as they are expected to be called - in what the Chinese manufacturer hopes will offer a trio of rivals to Apple's iPhones and Samsung's Galaxy range of smartphones. The latest leak of the new phones, which comes just hours before the 26 March unveiling event in Paris, shows complete front and rear images of the three Huawei devices. We'll tell you what's true. You can form your own view.


EU passes 'meme ban' copyright rules that could change the way the internet works

The Independent

The European Union has passed controversial copyright rules that campaigners claim could change the way the internet works. The suite of reforms include rules that could force internet companies to ban memes and to stop them showing links in the way they do today. Supporters claim the rules are required to ensure that music companies and news outlets are properly paid for the content that technology companies distribute. But opponents, who assembled in force, allied with those tech firms to argue that it could change the way the internet works and destroy some of its fundamental principles. We'll tell you what's true.


Apple's new News app crashing on iPhones and Macs as soon as it is released

The Independent

Apple's brand new News subscription service appears to have run into problems as soon as it was released. News is a subscription service within Apple News that allows people to sign up for $9.99 and get unlimited access to 300 magazines and newspapers including the Wall Street Journal. But the new app – which arrived in an update yesterday, after the launch event – appears to have caused some of the devices that run it to crash. Numerous users reported problems, specifically with the versions of the app on iPhone XS Max and on Mac. Opening the app would see it break almost straight away, and then shut down again, affected users said.