Collaborating Authors


This $250 robovac will clean your house for you


Today's deal will eliminate that hassle from your life. Amazon is selling the SharkNinja Shark IQ AV970 robot vacuum for $250. It's not clear when the sale price will end. This robovac features Wi-Fi, and the accompanying smartphone app allows you to set schedules or start a cleaning session. It also works with Amazon's Alexa and Google Assistant for activation via voice control.

AI Processing Is Critical For Smartphones And Benchmarks Show Snapdragon Out In Front


When's the last time you chirped, "Hey Google" (or Siri for that matter), and asked your phone for a recommendation for good sushi in the area, or perhaps asked what time sunset would be? Most folks these days perform these tasks on a regular basis on their phones, but you may not have realized there were multiple AI (Artificial Intelligence) engines involved in quickly delivering the results for your request. In these examples, AI neural network models were used to process natural language recognition, and then also inferred what you were looking for, to deliver relevant search results from internet databases around the globe, but also targeting the most appropriate results based on your location and a number of other factors as well. These are just a couple of examples but, in short, AI or machine learning processing is a big requirement of smartphone experiences these days, from recommendation engines to translation, computational photography and more. As such, benchmarking tools are now becoming more prevalent, in an effort to measure mobile platform performance. MLPerf is one such tool that nicely covers the gamut of AI workloads, and today Qualcomm is highlighting some fairly impressive results in a recent major update to the MLCommons database.

The Role of Social Movements, Coalitions, and Workers in Resisting Harmful Artificial Intelligence and Contributing to the Development of Responsible AI Artificial Intelligence

There is mounting public concern over the influence that AI based systems has in our society. Coalitions in all sectors are acting worldwide to resist hamful applications of AI. From indigenous people addressing the lack of reliable data, to smart city stakeholders, to students protesting the academic relationships with sex trafficker and MIT donor Jeffery Epstein, the questionable ethics and values of those heavily investing in and profiting from AI are under global scrutiny. There are biased, wrongful, and disturbing assumptions embedded in AI algorithms that could get locked in without intervention. Our best human judgment is needed to contain AI's harmful impact. Perhaps one of the greatest contributions of AI will be to make us ultimately understand how important human wisdom truly is in life on earth.

Google's new Pixel Buds A-Series: They sound good and the $99 price is right

USATODAY - Tech Top Stories

Could be a price war coming to the wireless ear bud battle? Less than a month after Amazon's Echo Buds debuted undercutting Apple's AirPods, Google is launching its newest Pixel Buds at a lower price than Amazon's latest – and lower than previous Pixel Buds ($179), released last year. Pixel Buds A-Series ($99) can be pre-ordered today on Google's web site and will be shipped by June 17. Google's latest may not have all the bells and whistles found on pricier pods – such as the noise cancellation you get on AirPods Pro ($249) and Samsung's Galaxy Buds Pro ($199). But the new Pixel Buds may be just the right choice if you are looking to join the wireless wave.

This week's best deals: 40 percent off Amazon's Echo Dot and more


As the month comes to a close, we saw a bunch of solid tech deals across the web. Amazon's latest Echo Dot is down to just $30 and you can still save up to $200 on Samsung's Galaxy S21 smartphones. Fitbit's Mother's Day sale is in full swing, bringing record-low prices to many of its wearables, and May the 4th sales began early this year with discounted Star Wars Instant Pots. Here are the best tech deals we found this week that you can still get today. The latest Echo Dot and Echo Dot with Clock remain on sale for $30 and $40, respectively, which is very close to their all-time lows.

Qualcomm aims to consolidate auto systems, expands GM, Amazon Alexa partnerships


Qualcomm on Tuesday outlined a broad strategy to advance its Snapdragon platform in the auto industry as it aims to expand in the cockpit as well as a bevy of subsystems. The Qualcomm playbook for the automotive industry rhymes with its plans for IoT, artificial intelligence and compute. That strategy revolves around using 5G and the Internet of everything to consolidate compute platforms. In an event dubbed Automotive Redefined, Qualcomm outlined a new software defined architecture called E/E (electronic/electrical) that aims to put its platforms in everything from the cockpit to autonomous driving to sensors to electric charging infrastructure. As automobiles become more connected via 5G enabled C-V2X technology, Qualcomm ultimately sees cars as the "ultimate mobility platform" with new experiences updated over the air.

Wyze's Outdoor Cam is the best outdoor security camera for the money

USATODAY - Tech Top Stories

Here are the Wyze Outdoor Cam's specs: The Wyze Outdoor Starter Bundle includes one Outdoor Cam and one base station required for use. Running on two 2,600 mAh integrated rechargeable batteries, Wyze's Outdoor Cam is completely wire-free and claims a battery life of three to six months for normal use (about 10-20 events per day). A base station is required to use the camera, but it's included in the Wyze Outdoor Cam Starter Bundle, so there are no additional products to buy. Up to four total cameras can be added to the base station, allowing you to outfit the exterior of your home with multiple cameras for less than the cost of one Arlo Pro 4, our No. 1 pick for outdoor security cameras. Wyze's outdoor camera delivers 1080p video and night vision that are easy on the eyes, as well as two-way talk functionality that's clear and easy to understand.

Apple's huge 5G and Siri bets risk user satisfaction and legal issues


Though it was held this year in October instead of September, Apple's "Hi, Speed" media event was a largely typical iPhone launch party, opening with the expansion of its Siri-powered line of HomePod speakers ("Hi"), and concluding with the long-awaited addition of 5G cellular connectivity to the iPhone lineup ("Speed"). Some companies might have tread cautiously on these topics -- Siri and 5G have both been dogged by complaints -- but Apple didn't hold anything back, using a seemingly endless parade of spokespeople to hype the new devices ahead of preorders. The 5G iPhone 12 family, it promised, will "blast past fast," while the $99 HomePod mini will become a hub to "control your smart home," bringing "intelligent assistant" access to the lowest price yet for any Siri device. Having covered Apple for a long time, I'm not surprised that its latest pitches were all sunshine and roses, but I couldn't help but feel that it was making big promises that could come back to bite the company and its partners. As of October 2020, the only thing less likely to thrill someone than a Siri speaker is typical U.S. 5G network performance, which despite boasts of 1-4Gbps downloads has seen average speeds that are barely better than 4G/LTE. Siri and 5G are both theoretically moving targets -- they're services that could improve at any time and in any region without advance notice -- but prior to this event, neither has delivered on its transformative potential.

The Best Smart Water Leak Detectors

USATODAY - Tech Top Stories

The Flo by Moen Smart Water Leak Detector is a reliable gadget to help protect your home from water damage. Flo by Moen's Smart Water Leak Detector is the very best smart water leak detector we've ever tested, beating out our previous No. 1 pick, the Honeywell Home Water Leak Detector. While the two detectors are comparable, Moen is the more affordable of the two and, most of all, we were impressed by the near-instantaneous alerts (an imperative function of a smart leak detector) the Moen leak sensor sent to both of our iOS and Android devices, as well as via email. The Flo by Moen Smart Water Leak Detector passed all of our tests with flying colors and even continued to function after being submerged in water during our final round of testing. When a leak is detected, the sensor begins playing an alarm sound and flashes red, in addition to sending timely alerts in a matter of seconds. However, what it lacks in voice-control capabilities, it makes up for with a beautifully designed app full of useful data insights. The sensor also keeps track of the temperature and humidity within your home, which can help with moisture control.

How to make phone calls with Alexa and Google speakers

USATODAY - Tech Top Stories

Beyond asking for the latest temperature, calendar appointments and recipes, Amazon Echo and Google Nest Hub devices can be used for phone calls. Amazon announced on Wednesday a new alliance with wireless carrier AT&T to enable AT&T customers (on "eligible rate plans") to link their mobile numbers and turn their speaker into a two-way phone. This will enable them to make calls and answer their phone from contacts at home by saying "Alexa answer" without having to search for the phone, or answer on a dead battery. You can also have a choice of where you want to answer, via the phone, on your device, or Echo speaker. The alliance is exclusive with AT&T.