Future Tech | TowleTech

Towletech v.120: Drones, Patrick Stewart, Doctor Who, Matrix California, Quantum Mechanics



A weekly round-up of the best tech, science, and geek-related news from around the web.

Road Anderson Cooper to make his Marvel Comics debut in an upcoming "Black Widow" storyline. "'It’s Anderson doing what he does best: looking for the truth and reporting on events. We imagine that in Black Widow’s world, as would be the case with many other Avengers, things she does can’t be ignored by the media and all it takes is somebody who knows how to ask the right questions to make her world very uncomfortable for her but in a way that is perhaps not unjust.”

 Road Amazon may be launching its drone delivery service as early as this October....in India. 

 Road Patrick Stewart adds some class to the Ice Bucket challenge. 


 Road Matthew McConaughey is reportedly up to play the villain in the long-gestating adaption of Stephen King's The Stand

Who Road 5 reasons not to worry about artificial intelligence destroying humanity. 

 Road Texas gay couple's Doctor Who-themed engagement photo goes viral - just in time for the Season 8 premiere tonight.

 Road Economic theorist Jeremy Rifkin explains his concept of The Internet of Things and its potential role in the future fall of capitalism. 

Controversial video-hosting site LiveLeak bans ISIS following their release of the James Foley execution video. 

 Road Google is testing its self-driving car in a complete virtual "Matrix California" - "According to the Guardian, this virtual world is housed inside computers at Google’s headquarters in Mountain View, and provides a complete map of California’s entire road network. It even throws in some real life obstacles to trip the cars up, like overzealous motorists and jaywalking pedestrians.

 Road An informative little video explaining quantum mechanics and quantum entanglement - featuring adorable kitties!


 Road Indicted Texas Gov Rick Perry, expressing concern that ISIS could come in through Mexico, is hoping to get more drones patrolling the US-Mexico border

CavillRoad Henry Cavill on set in his full superhero suit for the upcoming Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice

 Road Verge looks at how the U.S. goverment's online presence could use an upgrade: "Imagine a single, central website that could answer any question you had about government and whether it can help you. One portal where you could log in, and with a tool as familiar as Google search, ask: "how can I apply for a passport?" "is it illegal to fish without a license in Washington, DC?" "where do I vote?" "what do I do if my disability claim is taking too long?" "what forms do I need to establish my business?" No matter your query, you are met with an actionable answer, or a way to contact a human being who can help you with your request."

 Road Another way to prove Moon landing hoax conspiracy theorists wrong: moon dust

Road Check out what a circa 1987 Apple thought the world would be like a decade later

Road How does the iPhone 5 camera hold up against Fujifilm's X-T1?

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  1. I love this feature; keep 'em coming!

    Posted by: drew | Aug 23, 2014 5:41:39 PM

  2. " long-gestating adaption of Stephen King's The Stand. "

    They already adapted The Stand. It was OK, but ultimately the story just isn't that interesting. Why remake it? It's not fixable.

    Posted by: Randy | Aug 23, 2014 6:04:43 PM

  3. O Captain! My Captain! Patrick Stewart is the best person I've ever seen.

    Posted by: Carmelo | Aug 23, 2014 6:06:01 PM

  4. meh on "scary" AI

    computer scientists are nowhere near even understanding SENTIENCE let alone make something that is SENTIENT

    SENTIENCE thus self awareness, motivation, and will to act are not going to come about due to making computers faster and able to hold more info

    A retarded chimp is more self aware than anything humanity can come up with.

    Posted by: HIS | Aug 23, 2014 6:35:22 PM

  5. The AI article is utterly worthless. The author doesn't know enough about the subject to give a useful opinion. Take his example about learning Chinese:

    "imagine taking a brilliant English speaker who has never spoken a word of Chinese, locking her in a room with an enormous stack of books about the Chinese language, and asking her to become fluent in speaking Chinese. No matter how smart she is, how long she studies, and how many textbooks she has, she's not going to be able to learn enough to pass herself off as a native Chinese speaker."

    This analogy misunderstands and misrepresents how natural language technology works. Current language learning technology works by automating the process of immersion, not by programming computers with grammar rules. He also overestimates how much progress is needed before a computer could reasonably replace a human. It doesn't need to pass as a native speaker. It just needs to get by, just like any person speaking a second language can get by with a basic grasp of the language.

    Elsewhere in the article he proves to be uninformed about the state of automation technology, and just as with the language learning example, he completely overestimates how much this technology needs to advance before it will displace humans. Machines don't need to rival human intelligence to replace them. The Google car mentioned in this Towletech post is a great example. In twenty years or so there will be no taxi drivers in the developed world. That job won't exist—not because a self-driving car will be able to argue with you in fluent Chinese about what's the fastest way to the airport, but because it will be able to get you there at much lower cost to the taxi company than a human driver, even if it can't pass as human.

    Posted by: JJ | Aug 23, 2014 8:31:12 PM

  6. Why isn't Towleroad covering the Laverne Cox scandal? The story is busting out all over the internet. I thought Towleroad loved covering that tranny, so why so quiet?

    Posted by: Tim | Aug 24, 2014 4:39:57 AM

  7. VERY important comment: isn't this Superman costume a tad more blue than that in Man of Steel? I may have to keep looking and looking at it to be sure...

    Posted by: Kile Ozier | Aug 24, 2014 7:05:12 AM

  8. Jeremy Rifkin was a scare-mongering loon ("microwave ovens should be banned for causing cancer!") until he found out he could make more money working for big business.

    Posted by: anon | Aug 24, 2014 11:58:53 AM

  9. Quite a while ago, Rifkin wrote a book that tried to use the concept of entropy to describe how society works (I forget if it was economics or politics, but it was certainly not the physical world). The really scary part of it was a recommendation from some clown in the U.S. Senate who seemed to take the book seriously!

    To Rifkin, mathematics and the laws of physics get used as metaphors and then the metaphors are "justified" by appealing to physical laws. It is a classic circular argument.

    Posted by: Bill | Aug 24, 2014 3:26:51 PM

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