From futuristic elevated buses that will straddle cars, to robots designed to feel pain, it’s been an interesting month in the world of technology, here’s all the info you need for tech – May 2016!
Xbox fans? This one’s for you
Microsoft will be releasing at least two new Xbox models in the next two years, with a smaller, cheaper Xbox One being released later this year, and the model set for 2017 release will have a more powerful GPU according to sources.
WhatsApp users have been receiving messages from what claims to be a premium version of the app, called WhatsApp Gold, which encourages them to switch versions offering video calls, the ability to send 100 pictures at once and to delete messages after they’ve been sent, actually contains malicious software. WhatsApp has stated that it will never send users a message via the app asking them to upgrade or download another app, and will only message users if the communication has been started through official contact such as email.
Robots that feel pain
German researchers are teaching robots how to feel pain by developing an artificial nervous system which will allow them to respond quickly to potential system damage, as well as enabling them to potentially protect humans working alongside them.
The artificial neurons will pass on information that the robot will either classify as light, moderate or severe pain, just as human neurons transmit pain.
Microsoft ‘tricks’ Windows users into upgrade
Microsoft has been accused of a ‘nasty trick’ after changing the ‘X’ in the pop-up upgrade box from rejecting to upgrade to accepting it. When Windows users clicked on the cross to reject the Windows 10 upgrade it actually agrees to a scheduled update. Microsoft said the update can still be cancelled when the scheduled time for it appeared.
Futuristic elevated bus to ‘straddle’ cars
An elevated bus has been designed by engineers in China, which will have a tunnel-like space underneath that cars will be able to drive through. The bus, called the Transit Elevated Bus, has been designed in the hopes to ease traffic congestion, and will have a capacity of 1,200 passengers, which is the same as a standard subway train but will cost only a fifth of the price to build.
Using Facebook Reactions helps advert targeting
The Facebook Reactions feature will be used to gauge the effectiveness of advertising on users’ profiles, according to Belgian Police, who are advising people not to use the feature if they want to protect their privacy. A statement said: “If it appears that you are in good spirits, Facebook will infer that you are receptive and will be able to sell advertising space by explaining to the advertisers that they are more likely in that way that you will react.”
Hackers steal data from Kiddicare
Baby superstore Kiddicare has admitted customer data has been hacked, with customer names, addresses, emails and phone numbers accessed, but no payment details were taken. The company has said that it does not store credit or debit card information on its systems, but has increased security measures now in place.
10-year-old hacker rewarded $10,000
Instagram has rewarded a 10-year-old boy $10,000 (£6,900) after he notified them of a flaw in their servers which let him delete user’s comments and captions. The boy didn’t breach any user information in the process, having used a test account, and sent an email to Instagram after finding the flaw. Instagram has now fixed the issue and rewarded the boy.
Changes to Twitter character limit
Currently adding photos, GIFs and quote tweets count towards your 140 character limit on Twitter, but this is all going to change over the coming months according to a statement from Twitter, and they will no longer count toward the character limit. Using someone’s Twitter handle in a reply also won’t count towards the character limit, but links will still add 23 characters.
Underwater internet highway coming soon
Microsoft and Facebook have announced they will be building a private internet highway underwater from the US to Spain. The project is to ensure fast enough connectivity for Facebook’s virtual reality Oculus Rift and live video services, and Microsoft’s cloud and online services, amongst other things. The project is set to run from August 2016 to October 2017.
[Image credits: Xbox controller Jeramey Lende / Shutterstock.com, Whatsapp dennizn / Shutterstock.com, Microsoft, Transit Elevated Bus CCTV/YouTube, Facebook Reactions rvlsoft / Shutterstock.com, Instagram tanuha2001 / Shutterstock.com, Twitter Bloomua / Shutterstock.com, Microsoft]