Tesla Is Not Releasing a 'Self-Driving' Car This Summer

  • Published on Sunday, 22 March 2015 04:20
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Tesla Model S

Elon Musk this week offered a peek at some new driver-assist capabilities Tesla will be adding to its vehicles this summer, prompting a bit of a rush in the media to declare that Silicon Valley's favorite auto maker is about to launch a "self-driving" car.

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If James Bond drove an electric car, it'd be this Aston Martin concept

  • Published on Sunday, 08 March 2015 23:53
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Aston Martin DBX EV

Bulging fenders? Check. Nubuck leather-wrapped everything? Check. V12 rumble? Ch-- oh snap. For the first time an Aston Martin, car, albeit a concept, has an all-electric powertrain instead of pistons. The Brit carmaker says the all-wheel-drive DBX Concept is "a thought starter... that envisages a world where luxury GT travel is not only stylish and luxurious, but also more environmentally responsible." Marketing buzz aside, the DBX is definitely packed with interesting tech. It has drive-by-wire electric steering, toughened, "auto-dimming" windows, heads-up displays, in-wheel motors and the piece de resistance, lithium-sulfur batteries.

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Valve vs. Sony: Who's Got The Better VR Experience?

  • Published on Friday, 06 March 2015 04:48
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HTC Valve

Ladies and gentlemen, we've got two front-runners in the virtual reality race. Sony's Project Morpheus and the HTC Vive are the best VR we've ever seen. Both let you actually reach out and grab objects, unlike the Oculus Rift. But which of these two technological marvels is the most promising?

Before today, we couldn't begin to answer that question. I saw Sony's latest Morpheus prototype in San Francisco, and my counterpart Carlos Rebato saw Valve's Vive demo in Spain. Our experiences were an ocean apart.

But today, I tried the Vive too. Now I've seen both.

Sony Morpheus

Sony's Project Morpheus is still the most comfortable VR experience I've ever tried. It still blows my mind that Sony managed to figure out a way to balance the headset so the display just floats in front of your head. The Vive still uses the typical ski goggles approach of strapping front-heavy displays to your noggin with elastic bands.

And honestly, I also really prefer the Sony's lenses, which gave me a slightly wider field of view and felt more... transparent. With the Vive, I occasionally felt like I was looking through goggles instead of just using my eyes.

But Sony's weakness is that Morpheus is limited by existing hardware: the PlayStation 4 and PlayStation Camera.

The PS4 is powerful, sure, but the virtual environments it creates don't have anywhere near the detail that Valve is pumping out with a single Nvidia GTX 980 graphics card inside a beefy gaming PC. In Valve's Aperture Science demo, an incredible experience that sticks you right into the technologically advanced world of the hit video game Portal, you can get right up close to objects that are so lifelike that my brain forgot they didn't exist.

Read more at Gizmodo

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Apple “Titan” Electric Car to be ready by 2020

  • Published on Friday, 20 February 2015 05:19
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Apple Electric Car

Rumors and leaks about Apple's electric vehicle, which may or may not be self-driving, just keeps on pouring in. Apple has been known to eye cars but, until recently, everyone presumed it was just for in-vehicle infotainment systems. Now insider sources are revealing just how aggressive Cupertino's automobile push really is, saying that the iPhone maker is eying a 2020 deadline for its rumored Titan EV. That is, of course, if it manages to overcome not just technological hurdles but recent new legal problems as well.

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Google Glass 2 prototypes reportedly already in the hands of developers

  • Published on Tuesday, 24 February 2015 03:17
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Google Glass 2

Despite the fact that Glass was all but a complete misfire for Google, the project isn’t going away any time soon. Earlier this month, Tony Fadell told The New York Times that “future products” in the Glass line won’t be subjected to the same public experimentation as the first-generation model.

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The Anti-Aging Pill

  • Published on Thursday, 05 February 2015 04:37
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Facing a long wait for evidence, a longevity researcher takes an unusual path to market.

An anti-aging startup hopes to elude the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and death at the same time.

The company, Elysium Health, says it will be turning chemicals that lengthen the lives of mice and worms in the laboratory into over-the-counter vitamin pills that people can take to combat aging.

The startup is being founded by Leonard Guarente, an MIT biologist who is 62 (“unfortunately,” he says) and who’s convinced that the process of aging can be slowed by tweaking the body’s metabolism.

The problem, Guarente says, is that it’s nearly impossible to prove, in any reasonable time frame, that drugs that extend the lifespan of animals can do the same in people; such an experiment could take decades. That’s why Guarente says he decided to take the unconventional route of packaging cutting-edge lab research as so-called nutraceuticals, which don’t require clinical trials or approval by the FDA.

This means there’s no guarantee that Elysium’s first product, a blue pill called Basis that is going on sale this week, will actually keep you young. The product contains a chemical precursor to nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide, or NAD, a compound that cells use to carry out metabolic reactions like releasing energy from glucose. The compound is believed cause some effects similar to a diet that is severely short on calories—a proven way to make a mouse live longer.

Elysium’s approach to the anti-aging market represents a change of strategy for Guarente. He was previously involved with Sirtris Pharmaceuticals, a high-profile biotechnology startup that studied resveratrol, an anti-aging compound found in red wine that it hoped would help patients with diabetes. That company was bought by drug giant GlaxoSmithKline, but early trials failed to pan out.

This time, Guarente says, the idea is to market anti-aging molecules as a dietary supplement and follow up with clients over time with surveys and post-marketing studies. Guarente is founding the company along with Eric Marcotulli, a former venture capitalist and technology executive who will be CEO, and Dan Alminana, chief operating officer.

The company says it will follow strict pharmaceutical-quality production standards and make the supplements available solely through its website, for $60 for a 30-day supply or $50 per month with an ongoing subscription

Read more at MIT Technology Review

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