This Week In Digital – Week 49

AI can now detects floods and fire accidents, VR can make you a Jedi, and now you can 3D print in AR using a robotic assistant. Read more to find about all the tech revolutions that have happened in the past week.

3D Printing In AR Using A Robotic Assistant – Kyle Melnick, December 3, 2018.

In a 2018 research paper entitled RoMA: Interactive Fabrication with Augmented Reality and a Robotic Printer, Huaishu Peng, an information science doctoral student at Cornell University, and his team of researchers based primarily out of MIT and Cornell University, introduced RoMA, a robotic modeling assistant that utilizes an AR CAD editor to provide an interactive fabrication system operated via a VR headset and motion controls. In the video provided, Huaishu wears an Oculus Rift headset outfitted with an Ovrvision stereo camera as he designs a 3D model of a teapot in a 3D space using a pair of slightly-altered Oculus Touch controllers. As he works on his digital object in augmented reality, a 6DoF robotic 3D printer mounted to a rotating platform mimics the users actions in real-time, creating a real-world replica of the augmented object in the process. “Instead of designing 3D models on the computer screen, we wanted to give users the opportunity to work in conjunction with the robot,” states Peng. “We call it in-situ fabrication.”

G20 leaders call for taxation system of cryptocurrencyWieke Beenen, December 3, 2018.

Off the back of the G20 meeting that took place in Buenos Aires, Argentina, over the weekend, G20 leaders called for the taxation of cryptocurrency. A document jointly delivered by G20 leaders called for “a taxation system for cross-border electronic services”, with a final version of regulations expected to be in place by 2020, in line with Financial Action Task Force (FATF) standards. The development of international standards to regulate new technologies, such as cryptocurrencies, is a necessary step for the cryptocurrency market to evolve. Without having regulatory oversight and a defined framework for taxation and reporting, there is no way larger entities will enter the space for fear of regulatory backlash.

“Blockchain for Europe” Launched by Leading Global Blockchain Companies –  Wieke Beenen, December 4, 2018.

The new association wants to help Europe to create smart regulation to shape the global agenda on blockchain. Four leading global blockchain companies (EMURGO/Cardano), Fetch.AI, NEM and Ripple) have recently come together to establish an association representing blockchain originating organisations within Europe. With ‘Blockchain for Europe’, they hope to create a unified voice for the blockchain industry in Europe. The reason behind the launch of the association is that the policy debate in Europe has been fragmented – with inconsistent information from those outside the blockchain sector challenging consensus within it.

This Tech Lets You Move Virtual Objects Like A Jedi – Alice Bonasio, December 6, 2018.

It was only a matter of time. In fact, I’m a bit surprised it took this long, but researchers at Virginia Tech have put their brains to good use and come up with a way for ordinary mortals to replicate the telekinetic powers of a Jedi in VR. The recently developed technique is called “Force Push,” and it gives users the ability to move faraway objects with “Yoda-like calm, nuance, and focus” using an approach for remote object manipulation in VR. Users employ their bare hands using a natural gesture-to-action mapping for object manipulation in a VRsetting, using subtle hand gestures to push, pull, or twirl objects.

Cloud Architecture and Cloud Computing Trends in 2019 – Entrepreneur, December 6, 2018.

Business agility, scalability, efficiencies and cost savings are some of the top benefits offered by cloud computing technology, and more importantly, it doesn’t require any significant capital investment upfront. The tech game has changed! With the dawn of the internet, the advances in computing and software development anyone can access the world’s best technology while sitting at his/her kitchen table. Almost all enterprises, small or big – doesn’t matter, seems to have shifted their focus towards considering appropriate procedures to handle and manage such disruptive technologies within their existing environment. Cloud computing technology entirely relies on the virtualizations of hardware and software and its service-oriented architecture and several other value-added services.

Facebook AI researchers detect flood and fire damage from satellite imagery – Khari Johnson, December 7, 2018.

Facebook AI researchers have developed a method to analyze satellite imagery and determine the level of damages an area has suffered following natural disasters like fires and floods. In the wake of a natural disaster, the approach could help emergency personnel identify the worst-affected areas. The team of researchers also created a metric to measure the extent of damage caused by a natural disaster called the Disaster Impact Index (DII), which can be used to infer severe flooding or fire damage.

Customer support: How bots and automation are reaping outsized dividends for brands (VB Live) – VB STAFF, December 8, 2018.

Contact centers will shrink by 50 percent in the next three years as routine tasks are automated by bots that offer an 8.6 percent increase in profit margin per customer. When you think about interactions that the contact center is able to provide, whether it’s voice or non-voice, the end consumer is not going to be overly concerned about what the interface is going to be — human or bot? says Peter Ryan, principal analyst of Ryan Strategic Advisory. What they’re going to be concerned with is effectiveness: is my problem going to be resolved as quickly as possible?

Amazon finds more efficient cloud computing solutionTim Sandle, December 9, 2018.

To improve its cloud-based computing services, Amazon is to deploy an ARM-based Graviton processor. The e-commerce giant says this will lead to cost savings of up 45 percent for “scale-out” services. The reason behind Amazon changing the technology behind its cloud services is to deliver a faster performance and to save costs. The new system is expected to provide Amazon with a performance-per-dollar advantage.



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