James Desmond

James Desmond

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The startup UneeQ has created a website that lets anyone build one of their digital humans for free and start talking to it. The new site is a sign of the growing access to conversational artificial intelligence and highly realistic on-screen personas — making a conversation with a chatbot just that much more personal.  UneeQ previously built a digital twin of a famous Swiss banker the investment bank UBS let clients engage with. It also counts BMW and Vodaphone as clients.  UneeQ's CEO says digital humans can be easier to talk to about delicate subjects, such as mental health.  Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories. A startup that makes highly realistic on-screen human personas – including a digital twin of a famous Swiss banker – has created a platform where anyone can create a digital human and talk to it for free.   The new site is an example of the growing affordability of conversational artificial intelligence and digital humans – a way to make interacting with software a little more personal. UneeQ has been working on digital humans – the hyper-realistic on-screen robots that look and act like humans – since 2010. The firm has worked with BMW, Vodaphone, and top banks in New Zealand to set up the digital humans as customer service helpers, giving a persona to the chatbots that have previously often been simply a box to type into.  UneeQ has raised $11 million in venture capital, and boasts an artificial intelligence heavyweight — Salesforce's former head of AI, Richard Soucher — as an investor. A $5 million bridge round is coming soon, Tomsett says, and a Series B round is expected next year. The company has small offices in New Zealand, Austin, and San Francisco.  "This is a giant leap forward in conversational AI," says Danny Tomsett, founder and CEO of UneeQ. The company's digital human creator website "eliminates a complex, multimillion-dollar barrier-to-entry," he says, and compares it to the way Squarespace has helped companies to easily build websites.  The conversational AI market brought in $4 billion last year, according to Adroit Market Research, and is expected to grow 30% annually until 2025.  'Judgment actually comes in hand-in-hand with human conversation' The point of having a digital human that can answer customer questions is "to create a human connection and better online experience," Tomsett tells Business Insider.  Some might say a highly realistic persona is still not a human, but Tomsett says digital humans actually have some advantages over the real McCoys. "Judgment actually comes hand-in-hand with human conversation, and with virtual humans we see a distinct advantage there."  In one case, Swiss investment bank UBS built a UneeQ digital human double of its chief economist, Daniel Kalt, that meets with clients. "He's a well-known individual in Switzerland and so they wanted to recreate him and make him available for anyone for financial advice so we recreated him," says Tomsett. UneeQ Creator, the startup's new website, allows anyone to create a persona based on UneeQ's stock of nine diverse young men and women digital humans. The free trial allows anyone to bring one of the personas to life and have a conversation with it.  Companies that are impressed with the demo can connect the persona to their existing chatbot to integrate their natural language processing software. UneeQ says its platform integrates with major cloud platforms including Amazon Web Services Lex, Microsoft Bot Framework, IBM Watson Assistant, and others.  The free demo digital humans and $900-a-month versions are "off the rack" pre-made personas UneeQ sells, but more expensive versions are customizable.  In what the company says is a good example of the potential for the technology, legendary New Zealand rugby player Sir John Kirwan has used a UneeQ persona in a program to help people discuss depression.  "For many people struggling with their mental health, going to see a specialist comes with fear of the unknown, anxiety or is difficult due to a lack of finances," Kirwan said in a previous interview about the UneeQ platform.   UneeQ isn't the only one chasing this idea: In May, Japanese tech giant NTT announced new labs in Silicon Valley where it will build hyper-realistic digital twins of people for medical research. Those digital humans will be exact digital replicas of people for research purposes.   A brief conversation with a UneeQ digital human Join the conversation about this story » NOW WATCH: How waste is dealt with on the world's largest cruise ship
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"I never heard of retweeting a tweet being a crime," one defendant wrote.
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Along with a new iMac refresh, we have some interesting new rumors (and a leaked display!) for the iPhone 12 series.
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Huawei is sort of a cat on the wall at the moment. The company is gearing up for the launch of next flagship smartphones, the ... The post Huawei has run out of its mobile Kirin SoC stock appeared first on Gizchina.com.
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"Quantamental" is gaining hype on Wall Street. It's a type of investing strategy that tries to blend the best of quant funds and fundamental analysis. Bringing the two disciplines together is a feat in itself — hedge funds have tried and failed many times to get the culture and responsibilities just right. But both sides need each other, as fundamental analysts struggle to sort through massive amounts of data and quant models malfunction during never-before-seen market conditions brought on by the coronavirus. "I don't see my job as automating away humans," Man GLG's Paul Chambers told Business Insider. "I'd rather turn them into robo cops or Terminators, a machine-augmented human." Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories. This story was originally published in May.  With a degree in physics and experience working as a scientist on airspace-weapon systems, Paul Chambers has the type of background many believe is the future of Wall Street. And while traditional portfolio managers might fear for their future at the sight of someone like Chambers, the reality couldn't be farther from the truth.  For Chambers, who heads up quantitative investment and research at $26.7 billion hedge fund Man GLG, it's all about bringing the two sides — man and machine — together. "I don't see my job as automating away humans," Chambers told Business Insider. "I'd rather turn them into robocops or Terminators, a machine-augmented human." Chambers and Man GLG aren't alone in their efforts. Across Wall Street, from highly quantitative shops like D.E. Shaw to well-known stockpickers like Steve Cohen, hedge funds are working to find the sweet spot between human and machine.  The push comes following a recognition in recent years that both sides could benefit from learning from each other. Commonly referred to as "quantamental," the strategy has picked up steam in recent years with funds on both sides of the aisle trying their hand at it.  Traditional managers have felt a growing pressure to use cutting-edge technology such as artificial intelligence and machine learning to digest the seemingly endless amount of data made available to Wall Street. Meanwhile, recent events, like March's market downturn driven by the coronavirus epidemic, have been a lesson for quants about the need to diversify their systematic models. "The two sides are becoming closer to one." said Chambers, who re-joined Man last year to "supercharge" the work already happening at the hedge fund leveraging quant data in the discretionary world. "Some quant performance has faded as easy trades have been arbed away, so it benefits them to learn what drives different types of companies to get the most from the data, and discretionary managers want to access the data that quants can unlock in order to remain competitive." No simple solution to bridging the gap Quantamental might be a topic du jour among hedge funds, but the increased buzz has hardly led to a standardized approach.  Take mutual-fund manager Strategic Global Advisors. Founded in 2005 as the brainchild of Gary Baierl, a former quant at Causeway Capital, and Cynthia Tusan, a portfolio manager at Wells Fargo, the firm attempted a quantamental approach from the get-go.  Brett Gallagher, SGA's president, told Business Insider the firm's strategy starts with a quantitative model built based on 15 factors. The suggested portfolio is then analyzed by fundamental analysts who have the option to kick stocks out — they typically reject 10-20% — but can't add any in.  That's followed by portfolio construction, which is then given a final look by the portfolio managers to make the last tweaks. Adjustments made by humans to the model are tracked and analyzed to recognize commonalities that could be plugged back into the model to improve it.  "I think having the fundamental overlay — we call them the gatekeepers — is really important to what we do," Gallagher said. "Even moreso in this time of craziness where there are a lot of things that may make the quantitative model look a little bit wonky on certain aspects. We have the analysts there who can scoot out the issues." PanAgora Asset Management, meanwhile, takes the opposite approach. George Mussalli, PanAgora's chief investment officer, told Business Insider the firm was unhappy taking a purely quantitative approach, finding it difficult to get differentiated results in what was quickly becoming a crowded field.  As a result, the fund adjusted its focus to discretionary idea generation that could lean on the quantitative techniques they'd already built up. At it's core, Mussalli said, it's about understanding the fundamental framework of companies and industries and then finding the necessary data to emulate that.  "What you end up with are very differentiated signals, very differentiated approach," he added. "You're using the power of quant and the techniques of breadth, portfolio construction, and risk management to build the best portfolio. But what you get is a portfolio that acts very differently than a lot of other portfolios." At Ray Dalio's Bridgewater, the largest hedge fund in the world with $160 billion in assets, the process is led by "human understanding," the firm's co-CIO Greg Jensen told Business Insider in an email. "Nothing in our process is purely 'quantitative' in the sense that it is based on statistical relationships or historical patterns that machines are discovering. Everything is grounded in human understanding, and every part of our process is inspectable to us, so that we can have the computer read our logic back to us in more or less plain English and ensure that our decisions are consistent with that understanding," Jensen wrote. Still, there are times that the machines can outweigh the people — Dalio himself was overruled in 2018 about a trade involving the US dollar, according to The Wall Street Journal.  Quantamental isn't without its own challenges There is no denying interest in pursuing quantamental strategies is rising, but the trend hasn't been adopted with open arms by everyone in the space.  Josh Pantony, CEO of Boosted.ai, a fintech that helps fundamental managers use quantitative tools, recounted a particularly difficult sales call. "The most brutal feedback I ever got from a prospective client was, 'Using your platform would be an admission of failure to my investors,'" he said.  Pantony's experience isn't an outlier. In many cases, fundamental managers view the usage of quantitative techniques as a threat to their job.  "I think it's always something that a true MBA from Harvard who is great at Excel and finance but doesn't know anything about coding worries about in the back of their mind," Daniel Goldberg, founder of advisory and consulting firm Alternative Data Analytics, told Business Insider. Culture needs to be a key consideration of bringing both sides together. Speaking on a webinar in April, Carson Boneck, the chief data officer at Balyasny Asset Management, said transparency between the two groups was critical. Having "translators," or employees that can work with both quants and portfolio managers, also helped the process. Balyasny ran into its own trouble with the strategy — the firm cut a 10-person team known as Synthesis after only a year because of poor performance in 2019. Coatue, the Tiger Cub manager known for fundamental stock-picking, rolled out a quant strategy a year ago — but has already returned outside capital after the pandemic overwhelmed its data-driven processes.  Industry sources echoed a similar sentiment, adding that quant teams brought into discretionary firms need to have clear responsibilities that show they are having a direct impact on the firm, as opposed to side projects that won't affect actual returns.  "Nobody likes to be put in a room and told to collaborate," Man GLG's Chambers said. "What you need to do is find a way for both sides to get something out of the process. ... Quants can't be seen as service providers." To be sure, quant-based shops have their own issues attempting quantamental strategies. For one, quants tend to take a build-over-buy approach, believing proprietary tech to be a key differentiator. But when it comes to the tools needed for quantamental strategies, they often don't have the same expertise and struggle with the process, Emmanuel Vallod, cofounder and CEO of SumUp Analytics, a natural-language-processing platform that analyzes text, told Business Insider. The issue of explaining models also tends to be a hangup for quant-focused firms, as they aren't accustomed to having to break down models to the level required by fundamental managers. "There is a need for explicability of the algorithm that is much, much, much higher than what systematic quants are usually requesting," Sylvain Forté, CEO of SESAMm, a provider of alternative-data analytic tools, told Business Insider "Reconciling the two worlds is not easy." Whichever side you approach the process from, nearly all agreed it takes time. It's not something that can be expected to work overnight. Constant tweaking of the system is required to find the perfect blend. Most firms can't resist pursuing quantamental strategies There will always be those who remain either purely fundamental or quantitative. Quants like Renaissance Technology or stock-pickers like Warren Buffet have been successful for too long to drastically change their ways now. But for the rest of the industry, a shift towards the middle seems more likely. "I don't think anyone can sit still," Andrew Fishman, president at Schonfeld Strategic Advisors, told Business Insider. The true definition of quantamental is probably lost forever as it has "one of those wildly generic Wall Street terms that is so amorphous that it doesn't mean much," according to Ryan Caldwell, chief investment officer and co-founder of Chiron Investment Management, a $1.8 billion manager that was bought by FS Investments at the end of last year.  But, Caldwell says, the evolution is necessary with alpha — returns generated beyond what the market churns out for everyone — becoming harder and harder to find.  Fundamental analysts have been pushed even further away from the research that was once the backbone of MBA programs across the country thanks to alternative data that can track supply chains more efficiently. No longer is it about "shaking info out faster than the guy sitting next to you," Caldwell says. "The fundamental part of this is understanding the macro environment with which we operate in," he added. And, during a global pandemic that has introduced never-before-seen volatility and record-low interest rates into the equation, quants can't rely on analyzing past situations to react to today because today is unprecedented.  "We would worry about any approach reliant on historical patterns or quantitative models based on historical data, whether combined with fundamental measures or not, as so much of the current environment and where we're likely headed isn't in the data, and instead requires a logical understanding of the economic machine," Bridgewater's Jensen wrote.  Former Goldman Sachs PM Mike Ho put an even finer point on the future. Quantamental, Ho wrote in a 2017 Medium post, will eventually be like "dating in the 7th grade": Everyone says they're doing it, even if they're not. Ho, who ran a firm called Quantavista for a time, is now at Steve Cohen's Point72. "We suspect quantamental may become an official word in the coming years, too. But, by then we'll probably all drop the 'quantamental' term and it will just be the way that most investment analysis is done," Ho wrote. "After all, why would you not want to combine quantitative and fundamental analysis?"SEE ALSO: Billionaire Steven Schonfeld poaches a top quant from Glenn Dubin's Engineers Gate to run a new fund SEE ALSO: The chief data officer at $6 billion hedge fund Balyasny explains how to merge quantitative and fundamental trading strategies — and the importance of 'translators' to bridge the gap SEE ALSO: 'Quantamental' investing is suddenly a buzzword in the hedge fund world, and we talked to the CEO of a fintech that just nabbed $8 million to help power the approach Join the conversation about this story » NOW WATCH: Why American sunscreens may not be protecting you as much as European sunscreens
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Creators may be hesitant to immediately make the jump
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A study by Juniper Research projects the global consumer spending through direct carrier billing will grow from $33 billion in 2019 to $100 billion in 2025, with a key driver being the shift to subscription-based monetisation model of digital services.
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(NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center) NASA's Aqua satellite obtained visible and water vapor imagery as Tropical Storm Isaias continued moving along the east coast of Florida. On Aug. 3, 2020, warnings and watches stretched from Florida to Maine.
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As Microsoft continues to narrow Cortana’s scope and turn it into an AI assistant that’s primarily used in Microsoft 365, the company has made the decision to drop pretty much all of Cortana’s consumer integrations. Today, Microsoft outlined a roadmap for Cortana’s end of support, and it begins in September with the company pulling the plug on all third-party Cortana … Continue reading
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EA's Dual Entitlement feature will allow you to upgrade FIFA 21 and Madden 21 to their next-gen versions for free. Here's how it works.
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Netflix's "Umbrella Academy" showrunner Steve Blackman talked with Business Insider about how season two used the show's budget "more effectively." Blackman teased plans for future seasons and said he already knows what season three would be about if Netflix renews it. He also discussed the deviations from the comic book source material by Gerard Way and Gabriel Bá. Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories. Warning: This post contains spoilers for "The Umbrella Academy" season two When Netflix's comic-book series "The Umbrella Academy" debuted last year, it was an instant hit. Netflix said that the show, based on the Dark Horse comic of the same name by writer Gerard Way and artist Gabriel Bá, was watched by 45 million member households in its first month of release, making it one of its most popular shows ever. So expectations are high for season two, which debuted on the streaming giant on Friday. But showrunner Steve Blackman said that the show's popularity didn't change his plans for the second season. He always knew that he wanted it to be bigger in scope. "The goal was always to step it up a little more but without losing what makes our show entertaining," Blackman told Business Insider. Critics are already loving the season, which has a 92% critic score on Rotten Tomatoes. With the show's popularity, it would be surprising if Netflix didn't renew it for a third season — and Blackman already knows what it would be about. In his interview with Business Insider, Blackman teased future plans and talked about how season two deviates from the comic book.  Read the full interview below: This interview has been lightly edited for length and clarity. Travis Clark: The scope of this season feels bigger. After the popularity of the first season, did anything change from your initial plans for season two? Steve Blackman: I had a pretty good sense of what season two was as I was finishing season one before we had even gotten picked up [for a second season]. I wanted the storytelling to feel bigger in season two and we stepped it up with the VFX and honed our craft a little more with that. And I think we told bigger, more rounded stories. We dealt with bigger issues this year, like what it would be like to be a person of color in the South [in 1960s America] and homophobia in that time period. So the goal was always to step it up a little more but without losing what makes our show entertaining as this wonderful show about family dysfunction. Clark: You mentioned that you stepped it up with VFX ... did Netflix throw more money at you after the first season was so popular? Blackman: [laughs] I think there was a bit of an increase but we used our money more effectively. In the first season we were testing things out and trying different things, but once we got the rhythm of the show, in season two we were more effective in how we did things.  The Dallas street [the setting for much of the season, including the restaurant where the sit-in protest takes place] was actually shot in a town in northern Ontario. It has no VFX treatment, it really looks like that. We just did physical changes on the storefronts. But we decided that if we could find a place like that where we didn't have to spend a lot of money, we could spend that money more on A.J. Carmichael, young Pogo, and other things. We did actually go to Dallas to film on the Grassy Knoll, so there's obviously VFX treatment in the Kennedy motorcade, but the setting is all real. We were very careful about how we spent our money this year. Clark: Allison's [played by Emmy Raver-Lampman] story [as a Civil Rights activist] this season takes on new meaning after recent events. Has that been on your mind leading up to the premiere of the season? Blackman: Yeah. We wrote the show a year ago, but I knew we couldn't tell a story set in Dallas in 1963 and not address the racial issues and homophobia of the time period. We did an enormous amount of research, especially for the sit-in scene. It wasn't based on any one sit-in, it was an amalgamation of many sit-ins, but it was an emotional few days to shoot that scene. We wanted it to feel real and to tell an honest story about this time period and racial injustice. Clark: One of my favorite aspects of the show is the musical cues. Were there any that were your favorites and how did those come to be? Blackman: Music is a big part of my life and I see it as another character in this show. On most shows, they shoot it and then put music in afterwards. I pick the songs ahead of time. I encourage the writers to include them in the scripts. If I think of a song, I'll write a scene because of that song. So I know pretty much ahead of time all the music that will be used in the season and we like to use music that will subvert expectations. For instance, the Backstreet Boys song probably shouldn't fit in that fight scene and that sequence, but it does magically work. It was fun to think of what lyric Klaus would steal from a song in the future and tell his followers "here's an inspirational quote of mine." Those are some of my favorites but I love all the music.  Clark: I'm a big fan of the comic but respect the deviations the show takes from it.  I wanted to walk through some of those and how they came to be, like the Sissy and Harlan storyline, introducing Lila, and even Diego's powers, which aren't really explained in the comic but in the final episode we see him slow down those bullets. Blackman: The source material is a great springboard and I have a great relationship with Gerard [Way, the writer] and Gabriel [Bá, the artist]. But we realized early on that it couldn't be a carbon copy. There were a lot of things we couldn't afford to do even with a feature budget. They've been kind of enough to allow me to deviate, as a TV creator, and do what I want to do. I'm always extremely respectful of the graphic novels. Like, I couldn't not do A.J. Carmichael this year. That was something I was striving to do and the VFX company Weta came through with that. But it's a TV world and it's necessary for us to create some other characters. Lila was a lot of fun, because the premise of the comic was that there were 43 mothers out there who gave birth to 43 [superpowered] kids. It was great to meet another one of those kids this year, and it's fair to say we could meet some others. With Diego, his powers aren't really defined, but we thought "if you can curve and bend metallic objects like knives, why can't you do that to bullets?" But all of their powers are still evolving. They never finished their training with their dad because the family broke up. I think as long as the show is on the air we're going to show that their powers are always evolving and they're discovering new bits of their powers. Clark: Especially Vanya's [played by Ellen Page] powers, and her story really goes in a new direction this season. How did the relationship with Sissy come to be? That's the heart of the season and you realize that by the final episode. Did you always know, even looking back to season one, that you wanted to flesh out Vanya's storyline with this new character? Blackman: Her love story in season one wasn't a real love story. In season two, her memory is gone and she's coming into her own, so I wanted her to have a beautiful love story, but I needed to complicate it, too. Being gay or queer in 1963 was a criminal offense, but also, Sissy has a family and a kid who can't speak, which is similar to my son. My son's on the spectrum.  Ellen and I talked a lot about the LGBT storyline and how to tell a sweet love story but with all of these layers to it. And all of their powers come from something inside of them and Vanya inadvertently gives Harlan [Sissy's son] her powers when she saves his life. So the origin of their powers is something we may explore later on, too. Clark: Did Ellen and the other actors give a lot of feedback for their characters' storylines this season? Blackman: I always welcome their input. I talk with all of them about their storylines before and during the season. Ellen had many thoughts, all good, and a lot of that story we crafted together, especially the ending. Ellen really wanted to tell a story that still had hope in the end and wasn't a tragic queer love story. [Vanya and Sissy] aren't together in the end, but had they not separated they would have stayed together for many years. But yeah, the ending is definitely something Ellen and I talked about a lot and I think that's what made it beautiful in the end.  Clark: You've mentioned a few things you'd want to explore in later seasons and season two ends on a big cliffhanger. Have you heard from Netflix about a third season? Blackman: We haven't gotten picked up yet but I definitely know what it would be about. My fingers are crossed. Clark: Do you have a longterm vision for the series or taking it one season at a time? Blackman: I'm taking it one season at a time. With that said, I know Gerard has many volumes in his mind of what he wants to do and he's working on volume four [of the comic series] now. So as long as Gerard has ideas for the future, I like to think we could do at least four seasons. But I know season three and I'll worry about the next season as it comes. SEE ALSO: What AMC and Universal's deal to shorten the theatrical window to 17 days means for the future of movies Join the conversation about this story » NOW WATCH: What makes 'Parasite' so shocking is the twist that happens in a 10-minute sequence
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Changing the date of the election would require an act of Congress.
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Nothing beats a frosty beverage on a hot summer day, but you'll need a dependable cooler to hold the cold. Here are the winners out of the 18 we've tested.
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A photographer captured an epic showdown between a lioness and a lion that is actually a pre-mating ritual.
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At the dawn of its appearance in 2004, the clamshell Motorola RAZR phone revolutionized the market and was a total success. At one time for ... The post Motorola RAZR 2020 appears in a live photo from a credible source appeared first on Gizchina.com.
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The essential pros and cons you should be aware of before opting for a second-hand fitness tracker.
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Samsung India has been teasing the Galaxy M31s on its social media for a while. The company looks to increment the M31 with faster charging, ... The post Samsung Galaxy M31s: All details disclosed appeared first on Gizchina.com.
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Illustration by Alex Castro / The Verge The pandemic hasn’t been too terrible for Snap. The company behind Snapchat announced its second quarter earnings today, detailing how its business has fared during the COVID-19 outbreak around the world. Its user base is up by 9 million people daily over last quarter, and its revenue is up 17 percent year over year, at $454 million. Snap is positioning the growth as a win, especially given that advertiser budgets are shrinking amid a global economic downturn. “The economic environment has become challenging for many of our advertising partners and this has had an impact on the rate of growth in our business,” says Derek Andersen, Snap CFO, in prepared remarks. The pandemic took an obvious hit on the company’s business. Year-over-year... Continue reading…
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This is going to be one hell of a set, from the looks of things.
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We looked at the Vietnamese ecommerce scene in detail. Expect more coverage about Vietnam in the future.
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Microsoft announced Azure Arc, an application-centric tool for deploying and managing applications running on virtual infrastructures, towards the end of 2019. Since then it’s rolled out two waves of product previews: the first targeted at virtual machines running on-premises and in the cloud; the second, a more recent release, at applications running on Kubernetes clusters.To read this article in full, please click here
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The company removes all product promotion from Apple.com to mark the life of the iconic civil rights activist, who died Friday.
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Loon just launched balloon-powered internet in Kenya, in partnership with Telkom Kenya. Loon is part of Alphabet, Google's parent company. The high-altitude balloons act as "floating cell phone towers." Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories. Project Loon started as one of Alphabet's moonshot projects, and now its providing internet service in Kenya.  The company makes solar powered balloons that fly high up in the stratosphere and send internet access down to earth. These mobile, floating stations are more flexible than typical cell stations, as they're constantly moving. They also have much wider coverage areas; as much as a hundred times that of a cell tower. Right now, Loon stations are mostly used after disasters take out existing infrastructure, or in places where cell towers and connections are otherwise difficult, but Loon has much bigger plans. CEO Alastair Westgarth said " Loon is well positioned to play this role and serve as the operating system for the global connectivity ecosystem of the future." He hopes to create a global third layer of connectivity, on top of cell towers on earth and satellites in space. Here's how the balloons work. SEE ALSO: A Norwegian designer created a $13,500 tiny home office with tinted glass to be a perfect backyard workspace — see inside the Studypod Loon's balloons are launched from stations in California and Puerto Rico. Launches that were once done by hand are now done by two 90-foot-tall automated machines. They can launch a balloon up to 60,000 feet high every 30 minutes. Helium and pressure are used to steer the balloons, directed by machine learning algorithms. The balloons are specifically to bring internet connectivity to a 50,000 square kilometer region of Kenya filled with mountains and sometimes inaccessible terrain that makes traditional connectivity methods difficult. Loon worked on this project with local company Telkon Kenya, the third largest ISP in Kenya. Source: Reuters Loon CEO Alastair Westgarth said that the need for internet connections is even more pressing with the coronavirus, as people are unable to go to school, work, or sometimes even a doctor. To provide coverage for this area, Loon is using at least 35 balloons that will be constantly moving above the stratosphere in eastern Africa. Loon will continue adding balloons to reach 35, and internet service should become more consistent as a result. So far, the team has found the connection works even for video calls and YouTube. Since it began testing this project, Loon says it has already connected 35,000 users. The balloons work as "floating cell towers." At any point, a particular balloon might be providing an internet connection, acting as a feeder in the mesh network to support other balloons, or repositioning itself. . Each has a solar panel and battery. According to Loon, the advantage of these floating internet connections is that they're flexible and need much less lead time than a cell tower or other permanent infrastructure. The stations can also be used quickly in emergencies that take out infrastructure, like after an earthquake in Peru last year. Source: Loon
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Henry Cavill knows exactly how you imagine him: bulging muscles, epic chin, movie star grin, sitting alone in his man-cave playing PC games all day because that’s what he told GQ he likes to do best. Yes, your Witcher (and Superman) is an avid PC gamer, and today he’s taking advantage of the COVID-19 pandemic to prove it to fans by fulfilling last year’s promise to build his own custom gaming PC in the most seductive way a chiseled man without a proper cinematographer can. OH GOD, THE MUSIC: View this post on Instagram This kind of material isn't for everyone....viewer discretion is advised. You may see a lot of parts that you haven't seen before. #PC #AllTheParts #AllNightLong A post shared by Henry... Continue reading…
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Check out the newest trailer for this year's Viking-themed Assassin's Creed game.
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Users will be able to 'override ... restrictions' on phones and other kit, says engineering team Android 11 Beta 2, out this week, is a fairly modest update, focusing primarily on stability and bug fixes. But behind the scenes there are strong indications that a broader shift is afoot, with Google trying to address overall ecosystem inconsistencies that have formed since its initial release.…
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There appears to be a clear method most smart TV owners use to stream content.
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Amazon Music Unlimited is offering a solid deal just before everyone kicks off most of their Black Friday deals.Right now, users can sign up for four months of unlimited ad-free music streaming for only $0.99!Amazon’s music streaming service is a solid competitor to the likes of Spotify, Apple Music, and YouTube Music.It has a huge library of music, the app has Chromecast and Alexa voice support, and with this deal, it’s nearly free for the next four months.There are a few things to note about this deal.First, it is only available for people who have not previously signed up for Amazon Music Unlimited.
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Flygplanstillverkaren Boeing bedömer att flygplansmodellen 737 Max kommer att kunna flyga kommersiell trafik igen i januari nästa år.Det innebär att bolaget flyttar fram flygstarten för olycksplanet en månad.Flygplansmodellen 737 Max har efter två katastrofala dödskrascher fått stanna på marken världen över sedan modellen belagts med flygförbud världen över."Vi arbetar med det slutliga godkännandet av de uppdaterade utbildningskraven vilka måste vara klara innan Max kan återgå till kommersiell trafik, vilket vi bedömer ska ske i januari", skriver företaget i ett uttalande på måndagen.Det var den 28 oktober i fjol som ett Lion Air-plan kraschade bara minuter efter det att planet lämnat marken.Alla 189 som befann sig ombord omkom.
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