Researchers at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory's National Ignition Facility (NIF) recorded the first case of ignition on August 8, 2021, the results of which have now been published in three peer-reviewed papers....
Sunday, August 14, 2022
In January a California startup named Autonomy began "stocking up on EVs from pretty much every company that makes them," reports Bloomberg (including Tesla, Ford, and Polestar). Their plan? Collect a $5,900 "start fee," then charge $490 to $690 a month for an electric vehicle subscription with up to 1,000 miles of driving (but with no maintenance or registration fees):
That could be why auto executives are pushing to round up that sweet, sweet software revenue in smaller chunks. BMW, to much outcry, is selling an $18-a-month subscription for heated seats in the UK, and General Motors turned its OnStar voice navigation into a $1,500 "mandatory" subscription on every new Buick, GMC and Cadillac Escalade. Even without a la carte add-ons, one of the major forces propping up prices for used EVs is, ironically, their ability to update remotely — the same technology carmakers are using to nickel-and-dime drivers with subscription services.
I love digital engine control, that is a huge leap forward in technology. I'm a fan of the 10-speed electronic shift transmissions, those are great. ABS brakes, also great. But, and this is a big but, I still like my 5-speed stick-shift and basic tech old 2001 Dodge Ram 1500. It is an appropriate use of technology. Electronic engine control, ABS, both awesome. Stick shift, also awesome because I get to choose when it shifts. It doesn't decide when it is good and ready, which makes me crazy with automatics. There is a time during cornering when the power should come on, and they are always late. Always. Maybe I want to downshift as I slow for a corner or on a hill, that doesn't happen either. Maddening.
Tuesday, August 09, 2022
Harley Quinn, Doom Patrol, and Titans [and Batwoman] are all up next on the chopping block and cancellation is apparently imminent. They will join the never started Wonder Twins on the DCEU scrapheap.
That is not all. Another high profile show is also about to be made to walk the plank while it is still in development. Greg Berlanti's Green Lantern.
The show was in the process of casting with Jeremy Irvine locked as Alan Scott back in June. Alan Scott became one of the few DC superheroes to come out as gay in 2012, before it was fashionable.
Monday, August 01, 2022
On April 6, an autonomously driven truck fitted with technology by TuSimple TSP -9.59%▼ Holdings Inc. suddenly veered left, cut across the I-10 highway in Tucson, Ariz., and slammed into a cement barricade. The accident, which regulators disclosed to the public in June after TuSimple filed a report on the incident, underscores concerns that the autonomous-trucking company is risking safety on public roads in a rush to deliver driverless trucks to market, according to independent analysts and more than a dozen of the company's former employees. A TuSimple spokesman said safety is a top priority for the company and that nobody was injured in the accident.
An internal TuSimple report on the mishap, viewed by The Wall Street Journal, said the semi-tractor truck abruptly veered left because a person in the cab hadn't properly rebooted the autonomous driving system before engaging it, causing it to execute an outdated command. The left-turn command was 2 1/2 minutes old—an eternity in autonomous driving—and should have been erased from the system but wasn't, the internal account said.
But researchers at Carnegie Mellon University said it was the autonomous-driving system that turned the wheel and that blaming the entire accident on human error is misleading. Common safeguards would have prevented the crash had they been in place, said the researchers, who have spent decades studying autonomous-driving systems.
For example, a safety driver—a person who sits in the truck to backstop the artificial intelligence—should never be able to engage a self-driving system that isn't properly functioning, they said. The truck also shouldn't respond to commands that are even a couple hundredths of a second old, they said. And the system should never permit an autonomously-driven truck to turn so sharply while traveling at 65 miles an hour.