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Waymo seeking $2.6 billion from Uber for one trade secret

Daily Mail

Waymo accused Uber and Otto, acquired by the ride services company in August, with stealing confidential information on Waymo's Lidar sensor technology to speed its own efforts As we get fully self-driving cars ready for the road, we'll need more types of vehicles to refine and test our advanced driving software,' Waymo CEO Jon Krafcik wrote. 'Before starting production in October, we'd put these early vehicles through their paces at our own test track in California, and FCA's Chelsea Proving Grounds in Chelsea, MI and their Arizona Proving Grounds in Yucca, AZ. To underscore his point, Krafcik revealed the project had hit a key milestone in the journey to having fully autonomous cars cruising around public roads. It marked the first time one of the project's cars had given a passenger a ride without a human on hand to take control of a self-driving car if something went wrong.


Machine Learning Is Making Video Game Characters Smarter And Robots More Competent

#artificialintelligence

So says Danny Lange, the VP of AI and machine learning at Unity Technologies, a major maker of game "engine" software that handles the underlying mechanics of titles like Firewatch and ChronoBlade. Today the company announced Unity Machine Learning Agents--open-source software linking its game engine to machine learning programs such as Google's TensorFlow. It will allow non-playable characters, through trial and error, to develop better, more creative strategies than a human could program, says Lange, using a branch of machine learning called deep reinforcement learning. And Nvidia's new Isaac Lab uses rival Epic Games' Unreal Engine to generate lifelike virtual environments for training the algorithms that control actual robots.


Inside the Second Coming of Nest

WIRED

But because I am visiting Nest, and Mittleman is its Head of Product Design, working on a new gadget that this startup-turned-controversial Alphabet division is launching, I can't say I am surprised. The new products include the aforementioned Nest Secure, a home security system; Nest Hello, an internet-connected doorbell; an outdoor version of its Nest Cam IQ security camera (which uses Google face recognition to identify people who wander into range); and, perhaps most significant, the integration of the voice-based Google Assistant into Nest products, beginning with the indoor IQ camera. When Fadell left in June 2016, Larry Page replaced him with Marwan Fawaz, a nuts-and-bolts guy who is much in the mold of other recent Alphabet division leaders: experienced, middle-aged guys (always guys) known less for vision than for delivering quarterly results. Though no case like that had ever been reported, Nest halted sales for a few weeks and issued a recall to disable the feature in 440,000 Protect units.


Apple Music Update Adds 'OK Google' Support To Android App

International Business Times

Apple rolled out a new version of its Apple Music app for Android. With version 2.2.0, users who are accessing the Apple service via an Android device can now use the "OK Google" voice command to control Apple Music. This feature is actually part of the iOS 11 update that Apple started rolling out to iOS users yesterday. Apple has updated its Apple Music app for Android.


Google X's online course teaches you to build flying cars

Daily Mail

'Our students will develop the software skills and conceptual understanding necessary to build a flight system for an autonomous flight vehicle that can reliably complete complex missions in urban environments,' the firm said. 'Our students will develop the software skills and conceptual understanding necessary to build a flight system for an autonomous flight vehicle that can reliably complete complex missions in urban environments,' the firm wrote. Thrun, who used to work at Google before leaving to set up his flying-vehicle firm, Kitty Hawk, said he envisions a world where he can fly the 34-mile (55 km) journey from Palo Alto to San Francisco in just ten minutes. Thrun, who used to work at Google before leaving to set up his flying-vehicle firm, Kitty Hawk, said he envisions a world where he can fly the 34-mile (55 km) journey from Palo Alto to San Francisco in just ten minutes.


Spoiler alert: Google's Pixel event will still be more exciting than Apple's iPhone X reveal

PCWorld

As expected, Google will be announcing several new products at its event: Google Home Mini, an updated Daydream View VR headset, Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL, and a new Chromebook Pixel that will apparently be rechristened Pixelbook. After all, Google's own teaser for the phone presents some pretty big questions it's supposed to answer, alluding to things like improved image stabilization, long-lasting battery life, and auto updates. It's all but confirmed that HTC is manufacturing the smaller Pixel anyway (complete with its side-squeezing Edge Sense feature). With Google Home, the Pixel phones, Chromecast, and Daydream, Google has a numerous product lines to nurture.


Apple HomePod faces tough odds against Amazon Echo in connected home market

Boston Herald

Connected speakers are part of a broader white-hot market for connected home devices, which Amazon, and Google hope to control against rival devices planned by number of others like Apple and Microsoft. CIRP estimates that Amazon has sold 15 million Echos, accounting for 75% of the U.S. market, while Google has sold an estimated 5 million Homes, or 24%. While sales of 15 million Amazon Echo units is a big number, as of last year there were about 125 million U.S. households. The HomePod speaker will be heavier than Echo or Google Home, and Kevin Tofel, a gadget enthusiast and blogger, said that means it will offer much better sound.


Amazon wants to give Alexa a pair of smart glasses--Report

Boston Herald

Amazon.com is developing its first wearable product--a pair of "smart glasses" that will allow you to use its digital assistant Alexa wherever you are, according to the Financial Times. The FT noted that Babak Parviz, the founder of Google's ill-fated smart glasses project, and other former Google Glass researchers now work at Amazon's labs. Read: Here's How You Can Buy Snapchat Spectacles Online As the FT points out, a wearable and always-on Alexa allows Amazon to make good one of its key shortcomings. While an iPhone user can call Siri or an Android phone users can summon Google's Assistant, the current Alexa app needs you to unlock the phone first.


Google X's Sebastian Thrun: Flying car ready in February

Daily Mail

In April, Kitty Hawk revealed a prototype of its flying vehicle – an electrical aircraft that resembles a flying jet ski. According to Sebastian Thrun, a working version of Kitty Hawk's flying car will be ready by February 2018 And according to Thrun, a working version of the product will be ready by February 2018. Steve Jurvetson, one of the original investors in SpaceX, is also optimistic about flying cars, adding: 'They're kind of like autonomous cars, you get a peek of the future. And Steve Jurvetson, one of the original investors in SpaceX, is also optimistic about flying cars, adding: 'They're kind of like autonomous cars, you get a peek of the future.


The Morning After: Wednesday, September 20th 2017

Engadget

We've got our full verdict on Apple's iPhone 8. The biggest news is confirmation of the Google Home Mini, an Echo Dot-like puck that will sell for $49 with a focus on Google Assistant instead of high-quality audio. With a new A11 Bionic CPU inside, upgraded cameras and wireless charging, an iPhone 8 could be the right one for you. Here's everything from PlayStation Japan's 2017 press event The Tokyo Game Show has been a smaller affair in the last few years, and Sony has typically spun off its own pre-show press event.