TECH NEWS REVIEW Week 18-25 May 2020, by Stelios Iordanis


Doctors Are Using Mixed Reality to Treat COVID-19 Patients

The Microsoft goggles let the wearer communicate with colleagues or request information like x-ray results from technicians waiting safely in a different room

Given how much critical assets doctors are for the the health systems, this operation mode is here to stay; the only problem is that nurses cannot enojy the same level of protection, but at least N95 masks can thus be economized. What is more, remote and isolated work of workers could eliminate bribery in hospitals and offer transparency.

Autonomous farm work – enter the robots – YouTube

Robots Take the Wheel as Autonomous Farm Machines Hit Fields – Bloomberg

There was a sever shortage in farm workers in Europe during the last 3 months and robotic systems could render agriculture and meat production competitive again for the Western European countries.

Robot Makers Like Japan’s Fanuc Will Get a Post-Coronavirus Boom – Bloomberg

The robots-are-taking-our-jobs threat gets real

In Germany, deploying robots led to an increase of gross domestic product per capita of 0.5 per cent over 10 years. The pandemic could reduce working hours by 6.7 per cent across the world, equivalent to 195 million full-time workers, according to the International Labour Organisation. For now, governments are offering wage subsidies to businesses to retain employees. The onus will eventually also fall on companies to re-skill and accommodate their workers.

Regardless, enhanced socialist policies seem inevitable in 10 years even for the most die-hard liberal thinking economists, if automatization continues to spread, as predicted.

Universal Basic Income Test Runs Blockchain to Share Money Worldwide

The CEO and co-founder of the cryptocurrency investment platform eToro, Yoni Assia, believes that blockchain technology may help solve some of the challenges associated with UBI models. After spending over 10 years building out eToro with the goal of making global markets open and transparent, Assia turned his attention to a project focused on delivering UBI worldwide.

UBI has been demonized and there was strong opposition against it, but COVID will help establish it permanently during the next years in various forms.


A new artificial eye mimics and may outperform human eyes | Science News

A new artificial eye mimics and may outperform human eyes

The artificial eyeball registers changes in lighting faster than human eyes can — within about 30 to 40 milliseconds, rather than 40 to 150 milliseconds. The device can also see dim light about as well as the human eye. Although its 100-degree field of view isn’t as broad as the 150 degrees a human eye can take in, it’s better than the 70 degrees visible to ordinary flat imaging sensors.In theory, this synthetic eye could perceive a much higher resolution than the human eye, because the artificial retina contains about 460 million light sensors per square centimeter.

Surveillance, medical, military, and autonomous driving could be revolutionized if this artificial vision system scales to more pixels in total.


Intel/MobilEye Promises Self-Driving Robotaxi Service In 2022, While Others Back Off

While car OEMs still put a lot of focus on making self-driving cars for private ownership, MobilEye, like Waymo, Cruise, Zoox and other non-OEMs believes the fleet-owned robotaxi model is the right path.

The implications for national economies like Germany from such development could be disastrous given how much it will reduce need for car ownership 20 years from now.


Facebook teases a vision of remote work using augmented and virtual reality – The Verge

a super-powered augmented workspace with multiple customizable screens in VR would further reduce dependency of workers from the region where they reside and could lead to greater equality in salaries worldwide for the high paying positions.


‘Taste Display’ Brings Fake Flavors to Your Tongue

When the device is pressed against the tongue, the user experiences all five tastes at the same time, but specific flavors are created by mixing those tastes in specific amounts and intensities, like the RGB pixels on a screen. This bizarre demonstration of biotechnology could have serious applications somewhere in the future.


Official Footage Shows US Navy Ship Use a Laser Weapon to Destroy a Flying Drone

A San Antonio-class amphibious transport dock ship, deployed its Technology Maturation Laser Weapon System Demonstrator (LWSD) against an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) last week during a demonstration, the first such use of a high-energy class solid-state laser, the Navy said.

Laser weapons could enhance defense power of small nations with small armies against external threats from larger enemies.


The Department of Energy’s super-computing facilities are dramatically speeding up the search for a cure for COVID-19 with new kinds of neural network designs and a novel computer from Silicon Valley startup Cerebras.

Pharmaceutical research could thus be revolutionized and resemble open source software developemnt, as AI chips and computational power become even cheaper and datasets including 10-to-the-60th-power possible small-molecule drugs or streaming through about 4 billion compounds that are articulated in the various libraries that companies have can be scanned for candidate treatment screening. Such research will be possible from a single moderately priced desktop computer boosting democratization of drug research and even individualization of therapies.