Dragonfly Spacecraft And New Smart Cane

On Episode 463 of the Waves of Tech, we dive into a number of fun and related technology topics for you. NASA announced a new mission to Titan, one of Saturn’s moons, in which a dual quadcopter drone will survey for organic matter and water. A blind engineer has created a smart cane that includes voice assistant, Google Maps integration, and Bluetooth syncing to assist the visually impaired. We breakdown what we know as details surface about Facebook’s own internal Supreme Court that intents to review content after reports of misuse. The NFL is bragging about streaming 4K but that is quite misleading when you read the fine print. Lastly, Google Maps had some fun with the Area 51 with a “We Click in Peace” feature.

Dragonfly Spacecraft Being Sent to Saturn Moon

If you haven’t heard the news from NASA’s New Frontiers program, it appears that they will soon be launching a octocopter to Saturn’s moon Titan. Titan is known for its carbon-rich chemistry, interior ocean, dense atmosphere, and low gravity – all ideal conditions for flying a drone in the atmosphere and potential for biological creation.

  • The drone will be powered on the moon by essentially a nuclear energized battery
  • Areas of interest on Titan include a volcanic flows, organic compounds, and water
  • The conceptual idea took hold with scientists Jason W. Barnes and Ralph D. Lorenz
  • The contributions to science could be revolutionary with the help of a simple drone

WeWALK – The New SMART Cane

In a world filled with gadgets, internet enabled devices, moving vehicles, obstacles, and more, those with visual impairments and blindness experience significant challenges. However, thanks to Kursat Ceylan, blinded persons now have access to a Bluetooth enabled, Google Maps connected, sensoring buzzing, built-in speaking, voice assisted cane!

  • Ceylan is Founder and CEO of the Young Guru Academy based out of Turkey
  • WeWALK makes integration and participation with society just a bit easier with it
  • One user, Bill Ward, joked, “Just add a taser and it’s perfect for all situations!”
  • An estimated 36 million people of blind/visually impaired around the world

Facebook’s Content Oversight Board Takes Shape

Last November, we reported that Facebook announced the creation of an internal board to moderate and review appeals for posts and accounts that had been removed from the platform due to some form of misuse or abuse. They board is now taking shape but questions are still popping up in terms of if this in-house “Supreme Court” is the answer.

  • The board will be made up of 11 to 40 people with varying backgrounds and experience
  • Full time staff are charged with review submissions and background research
  • The main driver in decision making with be the existing Facebook use guidelines
  • Rumor is that even CEO Mark Zuckerberg cannot override the review board’s decisions

FOX Touts 4K NFL Streaming

The sports entertainment industry is always looking to push the envelope in terms of at-home viewing quality. A big push to 4K is on the horizon with more and more 4K units being sold and more broadcasters getting on board. The NFL is going to begin streaming their Thursday evening football in 4K-ish; it’s really upscaled 1080p, but they won’t say that.

  • Hardware is the big hurdle, with users needing 4K support from set-top boxes
  • It’s sad to see a league promise a resolution without actually providing the real thing
  • More and more live sports viewers are demanding higher mobile resolution
  • The conflict between streaming, data needs, costs, and speed continue to factor in

Resources & Links

Dragonfly to Saturn Moon, Titan
Blind Engineer builds Smart cane
Facebook’s Supreme Court
Thursday Night Football in”4K”
Area 51 Icon

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