Apple Acquired A Highly Qualified Free Agent

Posted by Kirhat | Wednesday, April 18, 2018 | | 0 comments »

Tech free agency trended a few days ago after Apple was able to poached one of Google's top AI executives in a move likely to have far-reaching consequences.

Apple has hired John Giannandrea, previously Google's Head of AI and Search, the NYTimes reports. Giannandrea will lead Apple's “machine learning and A.I. strategy," the Cupertino company said in a statement to the Times, he will be one of only 16 executives that report directly to CEO Tim Cook.

The Information had reported that Giannandrea would be stepping down from his role at Google and would be replaced by 19-year Google veteran Jeff Dean. Giannandrea first joined Google in 2010 after it acquired MetaWeb, where he served as CTO. The startup sought to make search results more contextually aware through its hefty database of tagged data.

The hire is particularly important as Apple has seemed to fall far behind its rivals in the race to build smarter software powered by artificial intelligence. Siri, the digital assistant which Apple has pumped much of its consumer-facing AI technologies into, is far behind Amazon's Alexa and Google's Assistant in capabilities.

TechCrunch chatted with Giannandrea at their most recent Disrupt SF conference where he described at length about how humans could help make computers smarter, but that everyone could also lend them their biases if they aren't careful.

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Touchless Control and Curved Screen for iPhones

Posted by Kirhat | Tuesday, April 17, 2018 | | 0 comments »

iPhone Curve Screen
Mark Gurman of Bloomberg reported that Apple is working on touchless gesture control and curved screens for future iPhones, projects that may help the company differentiate its most-important product in an increasingly crowded market, according to people with knowledge of the matter.

The control feature would let iPhone users perform some tasks by moving their finger close to the screen without actually tapping it. The technology likely won’t be ready for consumers for at least two years, if Apple chooses to go forward with it, a person familiar with the work was quoted by Bloomberg.

Apple has long embraced new ways for humans to interact with computers. Co-Founder Steve Jobs popularized the mouse in the early 1980s. Apple’s latest iPhones have a feature called 3D Touch that responds differently depending on different finger pressures. The new gesture technology would take into account the proximity of a finger to the screen, the person said.

Apple is also developing iPhone displays that curve inward gradually from top to bottom, one of the people familiar with the situation said. That’s different than the latest Samsung smartphone screens, which curve down at the edges. So far, every iPhone model has used a flat display. The iPhone X’s OLED screen curves slightly at the bottom, but the shape is mostly invisible to the human eye.

OLED, or organic light emitting diode, displays can be shaped into curves or even folded, unlike the less-flexible LCD screen technology used in prior iPhones. A curved iPhone may be as little as two to three years away, the person said. Apple is also working on new screen technology, known as MicroLED, but that’s at least three to five years away, Bloomberg News reported last month.

Both features are still in the early research and development stage and Apple could choose to not go forward with the enhancements. An Apple spokeswoman declined to comment.

The work comes as the Cupertino, California-based smartphone pioneer looks to make its gadgets stand out. Smartphones have become increasingly similar as Apple, Samsung Electronics Co., Google, and Huawei Technologies Co. adopt features like full screens, advanced cameras, and facial recognition at roughly the same time.

In the fourth quarter, Apple was responsible for about 20 percent of smartphone shipments following the launch of the iPhone X and iPhone 8, beating out second place Samsung and Huawei, according to IDC. To stay ahead, Apple needs compelling new features and designs. Samsung is already working on a foldable smartphone, while Huawei is seeing increased success in Asia.

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Instagram Drops Apple Watch App

Posted by Kirhat | Thursday, April 12, 2018 | | 0 comments »

Apple Watch Instagram
The trend of companies pulling their Apple Watch apps isn't quite done yet.

Instagram has quietly removed its Apple Watch app as of the latest iOS app update, leaving users without a way to check their photo feed on their wrist. The company didn't have much choice in the matter - Apple stopped accepting updates to non-native watchOS apps as of April 1st, so Instagram either had to rework the software or drop it altogether.

Endgadget was was not surprised that Instagram would cut the app. Even if users didn't mind browsing photos on a tiny screen, the Apple Watch version was rapidly falling behind in terms of features. It couldn't play videos or deliver direct messages, and its non-native roots kept it from working either on WiFi or an LTE-equipped Apple Watch Series 3 when away from an iPhone.

This isn't to say that the Apple Watch is in trouble.

CEO Tim Cook noted that Series 3 sales in the fall quarter were more than double those of the Series 2 from a year earlier, so there's no shortage of potential users. Rather, Instagram is likely joining Slack, Twitter and others in rethinking the need for a smartwatch app in the first place. While some mobile apps clearly benefit from watch versions (such as mass transit and weather clients), many others are largely superfluous. Think of this as the smartwatch app industry growing up, with companies now creating wrist-based apps only when they make sense.

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Boring Company
It appears that flamethrowers weren't enough for Elon Musk. His next merchandise under Boring Company will sell will be life-sized Lego bricks that anybody can use to build their own structures. The bricks are made of rock extracted during The Boring Company's drilling, and according to tweets from Musk, they interlock and have a "precise surface finish" so they could double as affordable housing materials.

Initially, they'll be sold in kits to recreate versions of ancient Egyptian structures like pyramids and the Sphinx. It stands to reason that Musk could use these to build the Hyperloop infrastructure and stations, too.

Musk says the bricks are rated for California seismic loads, so they should be plenty strong, and that they'll be bored in the middle so they aren't nearly as heavy as they look. More than that, two people could use the bricks to build a small house's outer structure in "a day or two." It isn't clear if that's an entire house, or just the basement/foundation.

There isn't a timeline for when anybody will be able to purchase these, either, but Musk says they'll go on sale soon. They aren't nearly as wild as a flamethrower, but while flamethrowers are flashy, they don't exactly address the dearth of affordable housing in bigger cities.

Hey @elonmusk any way to turn this into affordable housing etc. in the areas of future drilling locations? Little to no transportation costs if contractors come to the drill sites to pick up material by the pound. 
Yeah, the boring bricks are interlocking with a precise surface finish, so two people could build the outer walls of a small house in a day or so

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An Affordable 9.7-inch iPad With Apple Pencil Support

Posted by Kirhat | Thursday, April 05, 2018 | | 0 comments »

iPad With Pencil Support
Apple recently held a press conference in Chicago. And the company unveiled a brand new device — well, sort of. Apple is going to sell a brand new 9.7-inch iPad that works with the Apple Pencil.

Before that event, only (more expensive) iPad Pro models could take advantage of the Pencil. The company said that the new iPad would be the most affordable iPad yet. Apple hasn't shared any price yet. Current 9.7-inch only cost US$ 299 to schools.

Based on the introduction video, it looks and works just like the existing 9.7-inch iPad. The bezels are identical and there’s a Touch ID sensor. Apple Pencil support is the only thing that seems new so far on the hardware front.

Existing iPad users will also get new features as Pages, Numbers and Keynote for iOS are all going to be updated to support the Apple Pencil. It’s surprising that those Apple apps haven’t supported the stylus yet, but now it’s possible.

This feature is going to be called Smart Annotation and is going to be available as a beta. Teachers could use it to grade papers for instance.

Apple showed some tech specs. This new iPad should have an LTE version, an 8MP camera, all the sensors anyone would expect in an iPad and an A10 Fusion chip. This chip first appeared in the iPhone 7.

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Attention Grabbing Business Name

Posted by Kirhat | Wednesday, April 04, 2018 | | 0 comments »

Business Name
By Michael Cohn
Compukol Communications

When it comes to naming your business, it is critical that your name choice is the most effective and enticing that it can be. It must grab the attention of your connections online and in person so make it great.

The name that you ultimately choose for your business should not only have a positive impact in the short term but needs to be a name that endures throughout time. The name needs to represent who and what your business stands for and considering that you only have one shot at it, you need to make the name as fitting as you possibly can. As a new business owner, you undoubtedly have several important issues on your mind, such as money, staff, inventory, etc.

If you don't feel immediately inspired regarding your business’s name, it will come to you from one source or another. As you are setting up and organizing all of the elements that will make your business succeed, you may feel that you have time until you have to actually settle on a name that will be with you forever. However, there is more urgency to get the name in place than you think.

There are several different ways in which you can choose your business's name. Of course, you need to make certain that you have put a great deal of thought into your business’s name and make sure that you adhere to the following so that everything goes smoothly.

The simplest name is not always the best name
When you are thinking of a name for your business, you may be tempted to adopt the philosophy that your clients (present or future clients) won't have a clue about what your business is about if your business's name isn't either descriptive or literal. You need to give them more credit for intelligence than that. If you choose the easy way when it comes to the name, you won’t be giving any insight about the company and what makes it unique. Your business’s name should be interesting and inspiring to others. If your business’s name is effective, your returning clients will never forget the name and they will also be able to communicate the name to other people whom they know easily.

Using a product or service name is not a good choice
If you use a product or service in your business’s name, you are running the risk of the product or service having a shorter lifespan than your business has and that wouldn't work. It also gives the perception that the only thing that your business has to offer is that particular product or service and that is most likely not that case at all. Obviously, you have hopes that your business will be around for a very long time and the last thing that you need to do is create a name that cuts that lifespan short. Obviously, you can’t change the name of your business every time you introduce a new product or service. You should consider naming your business after a positive attribute that is a associated with your business.

Don't be limited by geography
Another thing that you should not include in your business's name is a geographic location. What if you expand your business reach eventually or move to a totally different location far away from the original location. The name will not make sense in that case. It is important to think about that upfront. It is difficult to enough to successfully run a business. The last thing that you need to do is to shoot yourself in the foot by not thinking everything through from the start.

Don't use acronyms in your name
It doesn’t make sense to use an acronym in your business's name if it won't be totally familiar to everyone (which will generally not be the case). The chances are great if you do use an acronym that you will have to keep explaining it over and over again. You need to use a name that is easy, clear, and clever.

You may feel that choosing the name of your business is no big deal; however, it is a huge deal in reality. In fact, the name of your business may be the most important element of all when it comes to how your clients view you. Make sure that you choose the name wisely and that it grabs the attention of your readers in a giant way. The name should express expertise, value and the unique qualities that only your business possesses. Of course, your name should also be solid and it should tell your story.

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