Meet the Japanese tech guru who is betting big on the future of drones

The Japan Times

The only person in kimono at a recent government meeting on flying cars was Kotaro Chiba, a former online-game executive turned financier of a very specific kind. For Chiba, 44, who wears kimono on special occasions to show his pride in Japanese culture, is gathering money for what he calls the Drone Fund. It invests in unmanned vehicles to survey buildings, make deliveries and take aerial photos for tourist boards; hover scooters; and a pilotless cargo craft that's seeking to make it all the way from Japan to Silicon Valley in one go. Chiba is at the forefront of an industry that's only years away from changing our lives. In five to 10 years, the skies could be alive with drones delivering goods, according to McKinsey & Co.


Delivery by robot soon to be reality in China as startup Neolix begins mass production of 'robovans'

The Japan Times

The future of deliveries may be "robovans." A Chinese startup called Neolix kicked off mass production of its self-driving delivery vehicles Friday -- saying it's the first company globally to do so -- and has lined up giants such as JD.com Inc. and Huawei Technologies Co. as customers. Neolix expects to deliver a thousand of the vehicles, which resemble tiny vans, within the first year as it broadens out. The implications are potentially huge: Billionaire Jack Ma predicts there will be 1 billion deliveries a day in China within a decade and the commercialization of the technology could provide lessons for autonomous vehicles carrying passengers. Neolix isn't alone in this space as Silicon Valley's Nuro raised almost $1 billion this year and is starting to deliver groceries in Arizona.


Facebook's Mark Zuckerberg savaged by politicians from around the world for avoiding them

The Independent - Tech

Facebook has been savaged by politicians from across the globe after boss Mark Zuckerberg once again refused to answer questions. The company was accused of undermining democratic institutions and failing to take responsibility for the damage it had done to the world. But the hearing was marked by the fact that Mr Zuckerberg had not arrived, despite a request that came from a coalition of lawmakers from around the world. Uber has halted testing of driverless vehicles after a woman was killed by one of their cars in Tempe, Arizona. The I.F.O. is fuelled by eight electric engines, which is able to push the flying object to an estimated top speed of about 120mph The giant human-like robot bears a striking resemblance to the military robots starring in the movie'Avatar' and is claimed as a world first by its creators from a South Korean robotic company Waseda University's saxophonist robot WAS-5, developed by professor Atsuo Takanishi and Kaptain Rock playing one string light saber guitar perform jam session A man looks at an exhibit entitled'Mimus' a giant industrial robot which has been reprogrammed to interact with humans during a photocall at the new Design Museum in South Kensington, London Electrification Guru Dr. Wolfgang Ziebart talks about the electric Jaguar I-PACE concept SUV before it was unveiled before the Los Angeles Auto Show in Los Angeles, California, U.S The Jaguar I-PACE Concept car is the start of a new era for Jaguar.


Self-driving cars begin transporting groceries to Texas homes

FOX News

Now, it's self-driving cars to make the delivery. Two Kroger markets in Houston are rolling out a self-driving car program, in which orders can be placed online and delivered right to your home without a driver. The self-driving service will be offered at stores in South Post Oak Road and Buffalo Speedway, per ABC13. Those in Texas can access the service from the 77401, 77096, 77005 and 77025 ZIP codes, for same- or next-day delivery. The delivery service was conceived by the robotics company Nuro, founded by two ex-Google employees.