Engineers from Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois have developed the smallest walking robot ever, and it's a crab. The half-millimeter robot is modeled after a peekytoe crab and is just the latest iteration in a long line of small robots created by the researchers. The goal for creating a bot so small is to move towards more practical uses of the technology and gaining entry to more hard to reach, tightly confined spaces.
After detecting over 1,300 Martian quakes, NASA's InSight lander will soon run out of power. A thick layer of red dust has coated the landmark robot's solar panels, depriving the geologic sleuth of the power it needs to continue investigating Mars' interior. The space agency expects to shut down InSight's science mission, notably the use of its temblor-detecting seismometer, over the summer. By year's end, InSight's successful, nearly four-year mission will likely end. "InSight is probably coming to the end of its scientific life pretty soon," Bruce Banerdt, InSight's principal investigator at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, said at a press briefing on May 17. A GIF NASA shared this week gives a vivid look at why InSight's power is diminishing.
My litter box is an open plastic box underneath the sink in my small Brooklyn bathroom. My cat, Colby Jack, likes to keep a clean house – and by that I mean that if his litter box is dirty, he will pee on your clothes. So I jumped at the opportunity to try out the Litter-Robot 4 and its promise that I wouldn't have to follow my cat to the bathroom and promptly clean up his business. The Litter-Robot 4 senses when Colby uses it and then goes through a cleaning cycle, moving the dirty litter into a trash bag and keeping the litter in the box clean. Ideal, I thought, for my neat freak of a cat.
TL;DR: As of May 22, you can get a lifetime subscription to LazyApply Job Application worth $999 for just $67. It may feel counterproductive to start a job hunt by signing up for a service called LazyApply, but hear us out. The LazyApply job application software lets you apply to hundreds of jobs in a single click, so you're actually being more productive than you normally would -- thanks to a little thing called automation. Signing up for LazyApply can save you from having to constantly repeat the same tasks over and over again in your job search. Just add the extension to your Chrome browser, log in, add your résumé and other details, and begin the application process.
Qualcomm's chips are powering some of the most powerful Android phones around, and now the company has a new flagship chip that is both faster and more energy efficient than its predecessor. The awkwardly named Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 (seriously, what's wrong with just a simple number?) is up to 10% faster than its predecessor, the Snapdragon 8 Gen 1, while drawing 30% less power. These improvements should be visible both in mobile gaming and regular use, thanks to the chip's new Adreno GPU and the new Kryo CPU. For an idea of what you can expect performance-wise, some of the phones touting Snapdragon's last chip include the OnePlus 10 Pro and the Xiaomi 12 Pro. The new chip will enable phones to take 8K HDR video, with support for the HDR10 format.
Based on early appearances, you should expect the unexpected when characters from Game of Thrones, Looney Tunes, and other popular Warner Bros. franchises team up and scrap together in WB Interactive Entertainment's upcoming MultiVersus. The "platform fighter" from the developers at Player First Games is built like a gaming sandbox where magical moments of play emerge from happy accidents and inventive players. The wascally wabbit can toss a projectile-blocking safe on the ground, but it's also a physics-based object that can be moved -- which means a punch can knock it into other players. Arya Stark, meanwhile, steps into the battlefield armed with a throwing knife that she can teleport herself over to, even if a teammate -- or, say, a cartoon safe -- is touching it. "Bugs Bunny will knock the safe up in the air and [Arya] will throw the dagger and teleport to the safe...and then re-direct it."
ECHO is a small yellow robot currently living with a colony of emperor penguins in Antarctica. The robot is part of a project by Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution studying climate change's impact on the South Pole's most iconic inhabitants. Physicist Daniel Zitterbart, who has been working alongside ecologist Céline Le Bohec, tells us about how ECHO works, what the project is trying to achieve, and his hopes for the future.
Today, May 19, is Global Accessibility Awareness Day, and Apple has announced several new accessibility features to mark the occasion. For people who are blind or have low vision, Apple has a feature called Door Detection, which is designed to help users locate a door when arriving at a new destination. The feature works on iPad and iPhone models with the LiDAR scanner and combines the LiDAR with the device's camera and AI capabilites. It will show up within Magnifier, which already hosts several accessibility features, including the People Detection feature launched in 2020. Door Detection will only work on the 2nd and 3rd gen 11-inch iPad Pro, 4th and 5th gen 12.9-inch iPad Pro models, as well as iPhone 12 Pro and 13 Pro devices.
Tesla's second AI Day will be held on August 19, 2022, CEO Elon Musk has announced. Musk said the event will feature "many cool updates," including a preview of Tesla's upcoming robot, the Tesla Bot. Tesla's AI Day is less a news-oriented event and more a technical playground designed to lure AI experts to come work for Tesla. Still, last year's event had some interesting news as well. The Tesla Bot was first mentioned during the inaugural AI Day.
Uber announced a few big plans at its product event on Monday, including autonomous deliveries and the ability to specify if you want your ride to be an electric vehicle. Now, to be clear, these new features will not be rolling out to everyone right away. Uber rolled out its Comfort Electric program in Los Angeles, San Francisco, San Diego, and Dubai, while promising it would add more cities soon. The feature lets riders choose an electric ride, similar to how you can order a larger vehicle (Uber XL) or a ride with your pet (Uber Pet). "It's as simple as tap a button and request a ride in a premium EV like a Tesla or Polestar," the company wrote in a press release.