Flying robo-taxis eyed for Bay Area commuters


French inventor Frank Zapata grabbed headlines around the world this summer when he flew his hoverboard across the English channel from Pas de Calais, France, to the famous white cliffs of Dover. But Bay Area commuters may soon do Zapata one better by skimming above San Francisco Bay on autonomous, single-passenger drones being developed by a Peninsula start-up company with ties to Google. The automated drones are electrically powered, capable of vertical takeoff and landing, and would fly 10 feet above the water at 20 mph along a pre-determined flight path not subject to passenger controls. The drones' rotors are able to shift from vertical to horizontal alignment for efficient forward movement after takeoff. The company behind all this, three-year-old Kitty Hawk Corp., has personal financial backing from Google founder Larry Page, now CEO of Google's parent, Alphabet, who has long been interested in autonomous forms of transportation.

Within 10 Years, We'll Travel by Hyperloop, Rockets, and Avatars


Try Hyperloop, rocket travel, and robotic avatars. Hyperloop is currently working towards 670 mph (1080 kph) passenger pods, capable of zipping us from Los Angeles to downtown Las Vegas in under 30 minutes. Rocket Travel (think SpaceX's Starship) promises to deliver you almost anywhere on the planet in under an hour. Think New York to Shanghai in 39 minutes. As 5G connectivity, hyper-realistic virtual reality, and next-gen robotics continue their exponential progress, the emergence of "robotic avatars" will all but nullify the concept of distance, replacing human travel with immediate remote telepresence.

FASTER: Fusion AnalyticS for public Transport Event Response Machine Learning

Increasing urban concentration raises operational challenges that can benefit from integrated monitoring and decision support. Such complex systems need to leverage the full stack of analytical methods, from state estimation using multi-sensor fusion for situational awareness, to prediction and computation of optimal responses. The FASTER platform that we describe in this work, deployed at nation scale and handling 1.5 billion public transport trips a year, offers such a full stack of techniques for this large-scale, real-time problem. FASTER provides fine-grained situational awareness and real-time decision support with the objective of improving the public transport commuter experience. The methods employed range from statistical machine learning to agent-based simulation and mixed-integer optimization. In this work we present an overview of the challenges and methods involved, with details of the commuter movement prediction module, as well as a discussion of open problems.

Mobility, Hyperlanes, Bullet Trains, and AI Autonomous Cars - AI Trends


I feel the need, the need for Maglev speed. The Maglev has been considered the fastest commercial High-Speed Rail (HSR) line and whisks passengers at a breathtaking 267 miles per hour from the Pudong airport to the Longyang station in Shanghai, a distance just shy of 20 miles. Named the Maglev because it uses magnetic levitation, it has been a marvel since it first opened in 2004. There are other high-speed rail lines of a research nature that are faster than the Maglev but holds the top record for a commercial in-use line. Let's call high-speed rail lines a more flavorful name, bullet trains. Of course, a bullet train cannot really go as fast as a bullet (which travels around 1,700 mph), though if you are standing on the sidelines when a bullet train goes past it might seem like it is going over a thousand miles per hour. Those of us in the United States don't have many bullet train choices and the preponderance of bullet trains are found in Europe and Asia. If you hold your breath, you might get a chance to someday ride a bullet train in California. That's actually a funny statement because anyone that lives in California knows that we've been pining away to have a bullet train for quite a long time.

Parents of dead girl lose case to access her Facebook account and see if she was cyber bullying victim

The Independent - Tech

The parents of a girl who died after being hit by a subway train have lost their appeal for access to her Facebook account. The 15-year-old died in Berlin in 2012, and her parents say they want to use her Facebook messages to work out if she was a victim of online bullying, and if she took her own life. Berlin's court of appeals has rejected their claim and ruled in favour of the social media site, which has repeatedly rejected their requests. 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.