USA TODAY Tech columnist Kim Komando has tips for organizing your online photos. Improved cameras on smartphones are flooding our digital accounts with snapshots. Using the most basic digital or smartphone camera, you can shoot thousands of photos, dump them onto a computer, and then shoot thousands more. In seconds, you can edit a photo series in ways that would take days to develop in the darkroom. But our images are usually stored on our various devices, often leaving duplicates to sort through.
"Of all the questions you could have asked…" That's how Microsoft Cortana, the digital assistant and female voice inside the new $199 Invoke voice-activated speaker from Harman Kardon, responded when I asked what she thought of Amazon Echo, the rival speaker it will inevitably draw comparisons to. It was Echo and its own chatty artificial intelligence-infused assistant Alexa, after all, that started what is rapidly becoming an increasingly crowded market for such intelligent cloud-connected speakers. The speakers let you use your voice to set alarms and timers, turn on lights, list appointments, deliver the news and play music. More: Google Home, Amazon Echo, Apple HomePod -- or all 3? How to choose a smart speaker Google's been expanding its lineup of Google Home speakers with the Google Assistant. Apple is readying a HomePod speaker with Siri for a December release.
What are they actually good for? In the recent months we've heard a lot about specialized silicon being used for machine learning in mobile devices. Apple's new iPhones have their "neural engine"; Huawei's Mate 10 comes with a "neural processing unit"; and companies that manufacture and design chips (like Qualcomm and ARM) are gearing up to supply AI-optimized hardware to the rest of the industry. What's not clear, is how much all this benefits the consumer. When you're buying your phone, should an "AI chip" be on your wish list?
Apple's self driving car project has been shrouded in secrecy - but its latest vehicle has been spotted by an arch rival. Dubbed'The Thing', it looks like an ordinary SUV - apart from a giant white'Star Wars' rack of sensors strapped to its roof. The video was captured by MacCallister Higgins, co-founder of self-driving startup Voyage, which is testing its own vehicles in a San Jose retirement community. He refers to it as'The Thing,' due to the bulkiness of its sensor array. He told CNET he took the video at the intersection of De La Cruz and the Central Expressway in Sunnyvale, and he is convinced that it was one of Apple's cars.
The Sonos One wireless speaker, priced at $199, will be available Oct. 24. It will support multiple voice services, launching with Amazon Alexa, but will add Siri using AirPlay 2, and Google Assistant, in 2018. Sonos is upping the volume in the smart speaker race. Already well-known for its great sounding wireless home speakers, Sonos is bringing to market the first whole home speaker system with built-in voice control using Amazon's digital voice-commanded assistant Alexa. The new speaker, the $199 Sonos One, due out Tuesday, raises the bar for good-sounding smart speakers.
If climate change, nuclear weapons or Donald Trump don't kill us first, there's always artificial intelligence just waiting in the wings. It's been a long time worry that when AI gains a certain level of autonomy it will see no use for humans or even perceive them as a threat. A new study by Google's DeepMind lab may or may not ease those fears. There are two unmistakable sides to the debate concerning the future of artificial intelligence. The researchers at DeepMind have been working with two games to test whether neural networks are more likely to understand motivations to compete or cooperate.
Jefferson Graham tests the Google Pixel 2 XL smartphone camera--is it the best one ever, as some have said? He compares to the Apple iPhone 8 Plus in a beach shootout on #Talking Tech. LOS ANGELES -- OK Google, we love the new Pixel XL 2 smartphone as a camera, but alas, for photos and videos, our hearts go to the Apple iPhone 8 Plus. With each new smartphone release, critics are quick to dub a new one as the best mobile camera out there. We said just that last year about the then-new Google Pixel, which won our 2017 shootout.
Are you ready for the WWE of giant robot fighting? Don't worry, we weren't either. Anyway, it's Thursday, which means it's time to make a plan for cleaning up dead satellites. Chainsaws aren't against the rules, FYI.USA vs. Japan giant robot battle was a slow, brilliant mess On Tuesday, Team USA's mechs scrapped it out with Japan's Kuratas in an abandoned steel mill for the world to watch. There could only be one victor, and it proved to be -- well, click here if you'd like to watch without a spoiler.
By 2021, early adopter brands that redesign their websites to support visual- and voice-search will increase digital commerce revenue by 30%. Gartner has found that voice-based search queries are the fastest growing mobile search type. Voice and visual search are accelerating mobile browser- and mobile app-based transactions and will continue to in 2018 and beyond. Mobile browser and app-based transactions are as much as 50% of all transactions on many e-commerce sites today. Apple, Facebook, Google and Microsoft's investments in AI and machine learning will be evident in how quickly their visual- and voice-search technologies accelerate in the next two years.
Apple has been low key about it autonomous car tech, dubbed Project Titan, but there is now a short video of the iPhone company's self-driving efforts. Voyage co-founder MacCalister Higgins posted a short video of Project Titan's test Lexus SUV, which he called "The Thing." The video givies the public a glimpse of what Apple is up to. The top of the white vehicle is equipped with a suite sensors and self-driving hardware. Higgins said on Twitter the front and back both have 6 LiDARS and that the "majority of the compute stack is likely located inside the roof unit."