Nissan, eyeing fully self-driving cars, offers a glimpse of its new semi-autonomous Leaf - The Verge

Nissan says the next generation of its all-electric Leaf vehicles will feature the Japanese automaker’s most advanced driver assistance system yet. Nissan first revealed its plan to include the ProPilot technology, which allows single-lane autonomous driving, in the forthcoming version of the Leaf back at CES last January. Now the automaker is offering a sneak peek of its latest effort to take on Tesla in the race to sell more advanced, mass-market electric vehicles.

“control acceleration, braking, and steering during single-lane driving on the highway”

The glimpse of the interior, behind-the-steering-wheel display looks similar to Tesla’s Autopilot, which offers similar functionality through its Autosteer and Traffic Aware Cruise Control features. The technology will help with “control acceleration, braking, and steering during single-lane driving on the highway,” Nissan says. “In the coming years, Nissan's ProPILOT technology will offer increasing levels of autonomy, with the system eventually able to navigate city intersections.”

Nissan also released this promotional video to tease the upcoming technology.

Nissan, along with its strategic partner Renault, is aiming to launch a fully autonomous ride-sharing service in the coming years, according to Reuters. Ogi Redzic, head of Nissan-Renault's Connected Vehicles and Mobility Services division, told the newswire that the automaker alliance was hoping to debut this new enterprise “certainly within 10 years,” though not before 2020. “We think that the big opportunity for us is in automation, electric vehicles and ride-sharing and hailing together.” Redzic told Reuters.

Photo: Nissan

Until then, the next-gen Leaf will give consumers the clearest look at Nissan’s approach to autonomous features. Nissan is aiming to compete with General Motors’ Chevy Bolt and Tesla’s Model 3 by offering a mass-market electric vehicle for under $40,000. Next-gen prototypes have been spotted on the road for the last several months, with production expected in September for final deliveries by the end of the year. It is likely that it will launch first in Nissan’s home market of Japan.

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Google purges private medical records from search - Engadget

Google might have begun working on the category's addition after an unfortunate event in December that exposed the sensitive medical condition of a massive number of people. An Indian pathology lab mistakenly uploaded 43,000 patients' blood tests, including their names and corresponding HIV test results. Google, doing what Google does best, indexed them all. This new policy could prevent mishaps like that from affecting people's lives, especially if they have a condition they only want close friends and family to know.

Before adding the new category, the search giant would only scrub your info if they're something that'd make it easy to steal your identity. Those include Social Security Numbers and photos of signatures, as well as personal financial data like credit cards and bank accounts. It then eventually started accepting requests to remove revenge porn or nude images uploaded to the internet without your consent. Other than those, though, the only way you could get your info pulled was to take advantage of EU's "Right to be forgotten" rule, and that would only work if you're from one of the union's member states.

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Galaxy S8's voice sidekick can do things Siri can't - CNET

The clickable button on the Galaxy S8 and S8 Plus is finally about to fulfill its purpose. Located just under the volume rocker on the S8's left side, the Bixby button will launch brand new voice software that phone owners have been waiting months for.

"It's not a voice assistant," Quam Erogbogbo, senior director and head of services for Samsung's services and new business division, said of Bixby Voice. "It's an intelligent interface that will change the way you interact with the phone."

Samsung doesn't want Galaxy S8 owners to compare Bixby Voice to Apple's Siri, Google's Assistant (which is also on the Galaxy S8) and Amazon's Alexa because it does some slightly different things. Bixby Voice puts searching your phone ahead of searching online, and it won't track your packages or tell you when to leave for the airport. Instead, it promises to do with your voice everything you can tap or type with your digits.

For example, instead of scrolling through layers of menus to look up your SIM card's phone number (three steps if the S8's locked), Bixby Voice will deliver it in one step -- yes, even if the phone is locked. You can toggle settings, do a ton with the camera and photos, and even set short, customized commands for long, specific steps (this the my favorite Bixby feature so far).

But for all intents and purposes, it's easiest to think of Bixby Voice as a sidekick of the Siri/Assistant/Alexa breed, because you do use your voice and the software does actually assist you with your phone.

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Destiny 2 Introduces Recoilless Weapons For Its PC Version - Twinfinite


Destiny 2’s developers have stated that some weapons in the PC version of the game may not feature any recoil.

Speaking to Australia-based Finder, Destiny 2 project lead Mark Noseworthy spoke at length about balancing when it comes to the PC version of the game. He stated that the team wanted to retain the same kind of experience between both PC and console versions, extending to weapon handling. This lead to the ultimate decision of removing weapon recoil. Here’s the full quote from Mr. Noseworthy himself:

“[…] There’s no recoil on guns on PC because recoil on the controller feels really good. ‘I’m firing, I’m firing, I’m firing, oh, I’m losing control of my gun a little bit.’ That feels great, especially with magnetism and all the magic in the controller that makes you feel it. With a mouse and keyboard, you don’t want the mouse moving without you moving it, so recoil doesn’t feel good, so there is no recoil on PC.”

According to Noseworthy, he believed that “all weapons” in Destiny 2’s PC version, regardless whether shotgun or automatic guns, will be free of recoil, but he urged fans “not to hold him to that.”

His announcement caused controversy among parts of the gaming community, as many users pointed out that previous gameplay footage from E3 2017 did show the same kind of weapon recoil the console version has on PC. Moreover, some players assumed that the interview might mistake the weapon recoil to the “auto-aim” function.

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Uber's ex-CEO knew a self-driving car engineer had Google's data long before it bought his company, Waymo says - Business Insider

Travis Kalanick Anthony Levandowski
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Associated Press

Travis Kalanick's rough week may have just gotten worse.

A court document filed Wednesday night states that Kalanick was aware in March 2016 that Anthony Levandowski was in possession of discs that contained data from Google. 

Waymo, which Google spun off, sued Uber over the theft of trade secrets and patent infringement related to its self-driving car technology. Waymo is trying to show that Levandowski, a former engineer in Google's autonomous car effort, took its proprietary information with him when he joined Uber, and the ride-hailing company was aware of and encouraged the theft.  

 The document may be a mixed blessing for Waymo's case.

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