With New Years Eve coming up, it is time to talk about the future of firework. Disney World Orlando changed this ancient Chinese tradition to start the new year with a bang. When dusk falls over the entertainment complex, hundreds of luminous drones take off, replacing their regular fireworks show.
This gridlocked highway looks like a river of red and white. Yesterday, during the Thanksgiving getaway, ABC7 news channel’s helicopter captured this massive traffic jam on one of the busiest and most congested routes in the U.S., the 405 in southern California. This year in fact, a record number of Americans – nearly 49 million – traveled for the Thanksgiving holiday. In suburbia, we hope to get away from it all. Unfortunately, everyone else had the same idea. Happy Thanksgiving to our American readers!
A study by Cambridge and Stanford Universities found that Facebook can understand you better than your closest friend based only on a handful of likes. We are what we like. This is the power of artificial intelligence combined with the value of data. Personal data comes in all shapes and sizes: from the data we generate online, to the data captured by our smartphones as we go about our daily lives. Data is a currency that we use almost every day to buy services. We don’t pay to use Facebook with money. Instead, we give away our data (every click, scroll and like) in exchange for using the platform. This seems like a good deal right? But how valuable is your data?
In the wake of Samsung burning phones scandal, news websites promptly followed the development of the story. After reports of their flagship phone catching fire and causing serious damage, plane delays and even hospitalization, the company made a first recall to substitute the batteries with the ones of a different provider. Nevertheless, the new phones were still bursting into flames. After a second recall, a strong warning followed to urge consumers to turn off and “stop using the device”.
A new wave of automation lies in pizza. Not only will robots deliver your pizzas in the future, they will also prepare them. A startup company in Mountain View, California, has replaced human chefs with robotic ones, cutting its labor costs in half and allowing for a bigger budget to use higher-quality ingredients.
When last year Microsoft Japan introduced an artificial intelligence program in the form of a teenage schoolgirl, young men nationwide were lining up to meet her. The AI was made to improve human-like experiences of the company’s customer service chat-bots. It was designed to learn from the conversations and interactions with human users on social media platforms. Unfortunately things took a turn for the worse, as she appears to have fallen into a suicidal depression.
Every year at Next Nature Network we search the globe for people and projects that have outstandingly contributed to making this planet a more sustainable place to live and honor them with our ECO Coin Award. Last year the award was given to Yoyo Yogasmana for his work in Indonesia for transferring his knowledge on growing more than 130 rice varieties without the use of insecticides to the digital domain.
Don’t look now if you’re someone who enjoys driving. Blame Elon Musk, blame Google, blame Al Gore… but there’s no escaping the fact that, in just a few short years, we’ll all be coddled from one destination to the next inside shiny, smart transportation appliances. And you thought holding out hope for a stick-shift was audacious.