A research team from the University of Surrey in the UK has reportedly developed a new, noninvasive drug test for cocaine that accurately detects its presence in your system through your fingerprints. Specifically, it looks for two common cocaine metabolites: benzoylecgonine and methylecgonine. These can be found in blood, sweat, and urine using a mass spectrometry technique known as Desorption Electrospray Ionisation (DESI). And since the metabolites dissipate from our sweat more quickly than in urine or blood (in which it can persist for up to a week), law enforcement will one day be able tell if a suspect is currently high as opposed to having been high a few nights before. What’s more, “we can distinguish between cocaine having been touched,” Melanie Bailey, the study’s lead author, told Motherboard, “and cocaine having been ingested.” Plus since the sweat sample is tied to your fingerprint, it’ll be nearly impossible for someone to swap it out for a clean batch.
The research is still in its very early stages, however. According to the team, they need to collect much more data on the effects of dosage and timing before they can move on to reliability testing. Still, they remain confident that this technology will be available to law enforcement within a decade.
[Image Credit: Shutterstock / HamsterMan]
Filed under: Science
Source: Royal Society of Chemistry
Earlier this week we reported on efforts to take the version of the Amazon Instant Video app for Sony TV devices and port it over to other Android TV devices like the Nexus Player. New reports indicate that Amazon has rendered the app inoperable on non-Sony TV devices.
Users were interested in the Sony version of the Instant Video app because it was a better user experience than the version Amazon was officially deploying through the Google Play Store. Installation did require sideloading the APK.
Members of the XDA community are currently looking through the code in hopes of figuring out how Amazon may be determining the installs are not on Sony TV devices.
Come comment on this article: Amazon disables Sony TV Amazon Instant Video app on other devices
Although it may be a while still before they show up in carrier portfolios, Samsung has officially launched the two latest colors for its duo of Galaxy S6 smartphones. The Samsung Galaxy S6 is now available in Blue Topaz while the Samsung Galaxy S6 edge now comes in Green Emerald.
According to Younghee Lee, Executive Vice President of Global Marketing, IT & Mobile Division for Samsung,
“The Blue Topaz Galaxy S6 represents the perfect fashion accessory for style-conscious consumers looking for a vibrant, expressive and distinctive color, and the Green Emerald Galaxy S6 edge provides a simply stunning color choice that meets the needs of those who want a sophisticated, yet unique looking mobile device.”
According to Pantone, blue is enjoying some increased popularity recently with four shades amongst the top 10 tones of spring 2015. The new colors join White Pearl, Black Sapphire and Gold Platinum, all three of which are available for either device.
Come comment on this article: Samsung officially launches blue, green Galaxy S smartphones
The internet has more than one capacity problem to worry about, apparently. Researchers met in London this week to tackle growing concerns that fiber optic cables, which represent the internet’s backbone, are hitting their physical limits. An Alcatel-Lucent representative warned that we could hit this barrier, about 100 terabits per second, in five years — not good news when 8K video and other data-hungry technologies are just over the horizon. The only conventional solution would be to add more cables, which isn’t always practical.
Thankfully, the gathering also discussed some unconventional ways of getting around this seemingly insurmountable barrier. One technique would ramp up the power in fiber and use calculations to reconstruct a usable signal on the other end, while another would involve fibers with multiple cores that offer much more bandwidth in a similar space. The challenge is putting these theories into practice before it’s too late. As with processors, there’s no guarantee that big breakthroughs will come in the nick of time.
[Image credit: Getty Images]
Source: New Scientist
Apple has snapped up more than a few companies that know how to deal with your location data, but it now appears to be focused on improving the accuracy of that data from the get-go. MacRumors has discovered evidence that Apple recently acquired Coherent Navigation, a company specializing in very accurate GPS. It combined the usual GPS positioning with information from Iridium’s low-orbit communication satellites to pinpoint your whereabouts within inches, rather than feet.
It’s not clear just what the Coherent team is doing under Apple’s wing. Its CEO and co-founders have taken positions in the Maps and wireless technologies teams, but that’s about as far as the revelations go. We’ve reached out to Apple to confirm the deal, but it doesn’t historically reveal what its plans are following buyouts. However, it could be for more than just ensuring that your Maps directions are on the mark. Apple is rumored to be developing an electric car with self-driving features that, by their nature, would depend on very accurate GPS info to get you around safely. There’s no guarantee that Apple took on these new hires with autonomous vehicles in mind, but the move would at least make sense in that light.
In one of its latest efforts to bolster its mapping capabilities, Apple appears to have acquired Coherent Navigation, a Bay Area GPS-related firm founded in 2008 by engineers from Stanford and Cornell.
One of Coherent Navigation’s areas of focus was High Integrity GPS (“iGPS”), a system that combines signals from the traditional mid-earth orbit GPS satellites with those from the low-earth satellites of voice and data provider Iridium to offer greater accuracy and precision, higher signal integrity, and greater jam resistance. Iridium touts iGPS as having the potential to provide location information accurate to within centimeters.
A number of Coherent’s key employees recently began working for Apple, including tech veteran and CEO Paul Lego in January and co-founders William Bencze and Brett Ledvina as of last month. Coherent’s website has also been taken offline, but on April 30 the name servers for the domain were updated to point to Apple’s servers.
It is unclear exactly what the Coherent Navigation team is working on at Apple and whether there was a specific technology Apple was interested in or if it simply wanted to apply the expertise of Coherent’s employees to its own projects. Lego simply notes that he is now a member of Apple’s Maps team, while Ledvina and Bencze are working in similarly location engineering roles.
Coherent Navigation would be just the latest in a long string of mapping-related acquisitions Apple has made over the last several years, including the developers behind Pin Drop, Locationary, WifiSLAM, Hopstop, Embark, and Broadmap. Apple has continued to improve its mapping services since a rough transition away from Google Maps with the release of iOS 6 in 2012, with the company working to add features like transit information and perhaps Street View-like imagery to its services.
Each week our friends at Inhabitat recap the week’s most interesting green developments and clean tech news for us — it’s the Week in Green.
Tesla‘s on a roll lately — it’s planning to reveal a $35,000 electric car next year, and it just unveiled a home battery that could take your house off the grid. But if you’re hoping to get in on the paradigm-shifting technology, you might have to wait — the Powerwall home battery is sold out through 2016. The enormous level of interest in the batteries has translated to $800 million worth of reservations, begging the question: Can Tesla’s battery hit $1 billion in sales faster than the iPhone? On the topic of the iPhone, Apple is seriously greening up its act. Back in 2011, Greenpeace named Apple the least clean tech company. Now, just four years later, Apple rates as the greenest tech company of all. Part of the reason for that improved rating could come from Apple’s partnership with World Wildlife Fund in China to create sustainable forests.
On the green energy front, a startup called Move Systems is working to bring 500 solar-powered street food carts to NYC. The carts come equipped with solar power, rechargeable batteries, plug-in hybrid technology and alternative fuel hookups. Hawaii is aiming to become the first US state to run entirely on renewable energy. If the measure passes, the state would get its energy from a mix of solar, wind, hydro, geothermal and biomass facilities. And is this the world’s most efficient solar system? Ripasso has developed a massive sunlight-concentrating disc that converts 34 percent of the sun’s energy into electricity — that’s twice as much as traditional solar systems.
California is still gripped in its worst drought in recorded history, and it shows no signs of stopping any time soon. It’s gotten so bad that San Diego County is building a massive $1 billion desalination plant — the largest of its kind in the Western hemisphere. In response to the drought, Starbucks announced last week that it will stop sourcing water from California, and it will begin bottling its Ethos Water in Pennsylvania instead. But despite the severity of the problem, not everyone is working to conserve water. Nestlé CEO Tim Brown actually wants to increase the company’s bottled water operation in California, and new aerial photos reveal that some of Hollywood’s biggest stars are still pumping loads of water into landscaping to keep their estate grounds lush and green. To deal with the ongoing drought, Inhabitat has rounded up 10 possible solutions, ranging from wastewater recycling to fog catchers.
When you step into a self-driving car, you want to be fairly certain that the technology is sound — and above all, that the car is safe. So on the surface, it might seem concerning to learn that Google’s self-driving cars have been involved in a total of 11 minor accidents. But there’s good news: Google says the autonomous cars weren’t at fault in any of the accidents. In other transportation news, a Brazilian Star Wars fan created the ultimate tribute: a VW camper van retrofitted to look just like R2-D2! San Francisco is paving the way for bicycle safety by constructing new bike lanes that are raised two inches above the rest of the street. Parallel parking is one of the more difficult maneuvers asked of urban drivers, but the German Research Center for Artificial Intelligence has produced a vehicle that makes it easy to parallel park in even the tightest of spaces. The EO Smart Connecting Car 2 can drive sideways, change its shape and even shrink itself to fit in smaller spaces. On the topic of mobility, a mobile garden with a wall of flowers and edible plants rolled into Expo Gate Milano last week. And on the interplanetary travel front, The Planetary Society is preparing to launch a test flight of the solar-powered LightSail spaceship that Carl Sagan dreamed up 40 years ago. The first test will take place on May 30th.
After a number of leaks and hints, this week Plex and TiVo announced their products will start working together soon. Plex media server gives users a way to easily stream photos, music or video files to devices like Roku and Chromecast, and pulls content from local hard drive or the cloud all the same. Mixing up its abilities with TiVo gives people who like traditional TV and their own media libraries an easy way to enjoy both (on an unrelated note — the HDHomeRun DVR Kickstarter added Plex support as its $250,000 stretch goal).
TiVo’s DVR setup, OnePass queues and apps for streaming services are great for cable and paid streaming services but it’s always been a bit weak at serving up users their own media — until now. As Dave Zatz has uncovered, this is built using TiVo’s support for Opera and HTML5 apps, bringing the Smart TV experience that’s already available on TVs from Vizio, LG and Sony, as well as the PS3 and PS4. The app comes to TiVo Roamio, Mini and Premiere boxes June 8th, while interested users can check out the most recent app updates here.
TiVo Inc., a global leader in next-generation television services, today announced Plex, the all-in-one personal media solution across home and mobile devices, will be available June 8 for TiVo subscribers. The Plex application on TiVo gives users the ability to organize video, music, and photo collections and stream them to their TiVo box quickly and easily for big screen viewing and enjoyment. Plex makes media beautiful by automatically adding movie posters, plot summaries, cover art, and descriptions. The app will also allow TiVo users to share their personal media collections on their TiVo boxes.
The Plex for TiVo app enables users to:
- Keep track of personal media by showcasing recently added content front and center, so users easily can pick up from where they left off, or play the next episode of their favorite show stored on their PC or media server.
- Free themselves from single-screen viewing. With Plex, users can fling great content from the Plex app on their mobile device to their TiVo devices to watch on the big screen.
- Effortlessly share media and exchange precious memories among friends and distant family members, to discover and enjoy even more content.
- Easily save online videos from favorite sites to watch later, even on the big screen. Or share the experience by recommending videos to a friend.
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We knew that Android Lollipop for the Samsung Galaxy Note 3 was always coming, but it’s always good to get confirmation. It’s been reported today that Galaxy Note 3 devices in South Korea, with the model number SM-N900S, are today receiving the update to Android 5.0. As always, the roll-out to Note 3 devices will be gradual so don’t freak out if your device doesn’t see the update tomorrow or even during the week – it can often take a few weeks for the update to roll out globally.
For those of you interested in what exactly has changed in Android Lollipop for the Samsung Galaxy Note 3, check out the full changelog below:
- Material Design: You will quickly notice a whole new colorful look and feel to your device – from fluid animations to new application and system themes, colors and widgets.
- Notifications UI & Priorities: In order to alert you to the mosttimely and relevant information, the format and behavior of notifications have evolved:
- notifications will appear on the lock screen and are intelligently ranked by type and who sent them.
- you double-tap to open one, swipe left or right to clear one, or clear all notifications from the bottom of the list.
- you can set the priority and privacy of notifications for each application.
- very high priority notifications will pop up briefly over other applications so that you can take action.
- when you dismiss a notification on one device it will be dismissed on your other Android devices, if they are connected to the Internet.
- you can further tailor how notifications behave with the new Downtime and Ambient Display settings (see below).
- New Interruptions & Downtime Settings: You can tailor how interruptions behave, choosing to allow all, none, or only priority interruptions. You can personalize what counts as a priority interruption (reminders, events, calls, messages) and even tailor them to be from only contacts you specify. The Downtime setting will allow only priority interruptions during the times and days that you specify. e.g. allow only priority interruptions on the weekend.
- Recent Apps (Multi-tasking): The redesigned Overview space (formerly called Recents) will include both applications and separate activities within those applications. For instance, each open tab in Chrome will also appear here along with recent applications; both your Gmail Inbox and a draft email message will appear as separate cards. This provides a consistent way to switch amongst tasks.
- Flashlight: Lollipop includes a new flashlight option as part of Quick settings (swipe down with two fingers from the status bar to see it).
- Pin a view/app: Screen pinning allows you to keep a specific app or screen in view. For example, you can ‘pin’ a game and your child will not be able to navigate anywhere else on your phone.
- Battery: The Battery settings panel now shows an estimated projection for how much time you have left while discharging or charging. You can also enable a new battery saver mode that will save power by reducing performance and most background data operations to extend your battery life.
- Smarter Internet Connections: With Android Lollipop, your phone will not connect to a Wi-Fi access point unless there is a verified Internet connection. This feature improves hand-offs between Wi-Fi and cellular connections, helping to maintain your video chat or voice-over-IP (VoIP) call as you switch.
- Performance: Your phone now uses the new Android Runtime to help optimize application performance. After upgrading to Lollipop, your applications will undergo a one-time optimization process. Note that the optimization for ART requires more space.
- Security: Encryption can now use a stronger 256-bit key to help protect your data. Note that the stronger key willonly be used after you perform a factory reset on Android Lollipop. Otherwise encryption will continue to use 128-bit key. You can turn on encryption in the Security settings menu.
Are you excited to see Android Lollipop for the Samsung Galaxy Note 3 rolling out? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.
The post Android Lollipop for the Samsung Galaxy Note 3 is now rolling out in South Korea appeared first on AndroidSPIN.
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A common trend among Nexus smartphones is that the device will generally be based on one of the devices the manufacturer has made earlier that year – this was definitely true for the Nexus 4, based on the LG Optimus G, and the Nexus 5, based loosely on the LG G2. We’ve been hearing quite a lot of chatter that suggests Huawei will be the manufacturer of this year’s Nexus smartphone, and if true, this Huawei Nexus smartphone will be based on the Ascend Mate 8.
The Ascend Mate 8 isn’t expected to be released until northern Fall this year, but you can sort of see how this would be a good fit for what we’ve heard of the device so far. What we think we know so far is that the Huawei Nexus would be packing a Snapdragon 810, 5.7-inch 2K display, which does appear to fit the form factor that the Ascend Mate 8 would fall into. We’ve still got a while yet before we know who the potential manufacturer might be, but who ever it is, it looks like it’s going to be a pretty stellar device.
What do you think about the Huawei Nexus smartphone being based on the Ascend Mate 8? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.
The post Huawei Nexus smartphone will be based on the Ascend Mate 8, report alleges appeared first on AndroidSPIN.