When it was announced that Intel and AMD had collaborated on a processor design that bundled together an Intel CPU core and an AMD graphics chip on the same die, it seemed as if dogs and cats were about to start living together. But as the days rolled on, other market participants absorbed the news, which is why it’s no surprise that a leaked Nvidia specification appears to be going after the new combo-chip with a design termed GTX 1050 Max-Q.
Spotted by NotebookCheck in the latest Nvidia driver release for Linux platforms, the GTX 1050 and 1050 Ti Max-Q chips are expected to sit somewhere just beneath the standard GTX 1050 and 1050 Ti cards in terms of performance, offering improved efficiency and thermal controls. If the speculation is correct, the idea would be to integrate such chips into lightweight laptops.
Although that kind of talk is all conjecture, the educated guesses at clock speeds by the likes of VideoCardz suggest that these new 10-series graphics processors (GPU) could have a purpose beyond expanding the existing range of Nvidia chips. Their speculated performance would put them around about the power of the recently announced Kaby Lake G series with AMD graphics on board. These new Max-Q GPUs could be Nvidia’s attempt to counter the new strategy from the chip giants.
How effective a strategy that will be, though, remains to be seen. We still don’t know what the real-world performance of the new Kaby Lake G chips will be like, as the close proximity of the CPU and GPU and the pairing with second-generation high bandwidth memory (HBM2) could give it a unique performance profile. Nvidia’s more typical graphics chip design could end up more powerful in some scenarios and less so in others.
Nvidia has yet to make any sort of official announcement of the GTX 1050 and 1050 Ti Max-Q cards, so we have no idea when we can expect them to see the light of day. However, with them starting to receive official, certified driver support, we would be surprised if they didn’t appear, at least in a reference design, some time in the next few months.
- Intel wants to bring you faster Wi-Fi in the next couple of years
- Time to upgrade your gaming PC? These are the best processors to choose from
- Intel promises its new CPUs will match Nvidia’s potent GTX 1060, thanks to AMD
- Intel’s Cannonlake processor is still scheduled to fire off by the end of 2017
- The monstrous ROG G703 Asus laptop could easily chew through your PC games
Everyone knows that vegetables are part of a healthy diet, but very soon a stick of broccoli each day could actively help your body to battle cancer, thanks to some smart genetic modification. That’s based on work being carried out by researchers at the National University of Singapore (NUS), who have been working on a new treatment for colorectal cancer, one of the most common cancers found in the developed world. As a new method of fighting this disease, researchers in the NUS Medicine lab aim to transform vegetables and a “bacteria cocktail” into a targeted system, specially designed to seek out and destroy colorectal cancer cells wherever it finds them.
“Our primary goal was to make use of what we already have in our body for disease prevention and treatment; basically reprogramming gut microbes that live with us to convert food into drugs on demand,” Professor Matthew Wook Chang, one of the researchers on the project, told Digital Trends. “In this particular study, we reprogrammed gut microbes to harness dietary vegetable compounds to target colorectal cancer. These gut microbes specifically recognize and bind onto the colorectal cancer cell surface. Following this, the microbes use enzymatic conversion to unlock the latent anticancer properties of the plant-derived compounds to inhibit cancer cell growth and cause the cancer cells to self-destruct.”
In studies, the mixture of engineered probiotics and broccoli extract was shown to be capable of killing over 95 percent of colorectal cancer cells in a dish (although it had no effect on other types of cancer). The combination of probiotics and vegetables reduced tumor numbers by 75 percent in mice suffering from colorectal cancer. Those tumors which did appear were three times smaller than those found in mice which hadn’t undergone the treatment.
“We hope that these microbes could be used as a form of supplement drink or pills that could be taken on a weekly basis for people above a certain age or at risk of colorectal cancer,” Chang said. “The ingested microbes will screen the gut for any abnormal cells and naturally clear them with the help of a vegetable diet. Another application is to have these cells used in post-operative care where patients can take these microbes to help eliminate any remnant cancerous tissues after a surgery to remove the tumor.”
A paper describing the work was recently published in the journal Nature Biomedical Engineering.
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- Hijacked sperm in magnetic harnesses could be the next weapon in war on cancer
- With CRISPR, geneticists have a powerful new weapon in the battle against ALS
- If young blood can really halt death, things are going to get weird
- Swallow this ingestible gas sensor to spill the secrets of your angry gut
Two well-known tech companies have competing — but also different — home alarm systems. Which one’s right for you?
For as smart as our homes have become — with damned near every device you can buy today connected to the internet, and probably with some sort of smart assistant baked in — alarm systems have sort of lagged in the past. Legacy companies continue to dominate, in no small part because there traditionally was very little for homeowners to do other than sign a check.
But advances in networking and in the simplification of the technology itself means that it’s gotten easier for anyone with a screwdriver to install all sorts of cameras and sensors in and around their home. In late 2017, Nest — already known for its thermostats, smoke detectors and cameras — announced its “Nest Secure” system. And upstart Ring — which has made quite the name for itself with a series of connected doorbells and lights, each with cameras built in — has followed suit with its “Ring Alarm” system.
Nest Secure is available today. Ring Alarm is coming sometime in the spring of 2018. The two systems aren’t really a 1:1 comparison, whether it’s in price or products. If you’re looking to deck out every point of entry in your home, one will cost significantly more than the other, at least on paper.
But it’s still worth taking a look at them side by side, which we’ll do now.
Nest Secure ($499, available now)
What you get: For the base price you get a Nest Guard base, two Nest Detects, and two Nest Tags. The Nest Guard includes a keypad and is how you’ll arm and disarm the system. (You also can do so with your phone.)
The Nest Detect looks like a typical door or window sensor to alert when something’s been opened, but it also serves as a motion detector. Or, it can do both. (It also provides path lighting.)
Nest Tags are little keyring-size pucks that you can tap on the Nest Guard to arm and disarm the system.
Add-ons: An additional Nest Detect will cost $59 each. That’ll get expensive real fast if you’re looking to monitor every door or window in your home. But remember that each one can also serve as a motion detector. Additional Nest Tags cost $25 each, and you can pick up a Nest Connect range extender for $69.
Monitoring: Just like with Nest’s other products, everything will ping into your phone. For $50 a year (or $5 a month) you can add a cellular backup option, so you’ll still be alerted even if your home internet is down. And there’s full 24/7 professional monitoring available through MONI, starting at $25 a month with a three-year contract — $900 over the life of the plan.
Our take: Nest Secure certainly looks like an expensive option. But that also fits into Nest’s product range — function and style, along with ease of use, and a price tag to match. Arming every single point of entry would get very expensive — we might just concentrate on strategic locations instead.
See at Nest
Ring Alarm ($199, not yet available)
What you get: The bottom-line price gets you a base unit and separate keypad. Also included is a single door/window contact sensor, and a single motion sensor.
Add-ons: The basic Ring Alarm system is a lot less expensive but comes with fewer sensors. However, it also has more products available to tie in to the system.
An additional keypad runs $50. Each additional motion detector is $30, and additional contact sensors are $20 each. A flood/freeze sensor is $25, as is a smoke/CO sensor.
Monitoring: Ring Alarm doesn’t appear to have as extensive monitoring options — including cellular backup or professional monitoring. But $100 a year (or $10 a month) hooks you in to Ring’s “Protect Plus” plan, which gives full playback and sharing from all of your Ring devices, lifetime warranty, and discounts on future devices.
Our take: Ring Alarm was pushed back due to legal issues, and we don’t know exactly when it’ll be available, or what might change in the interim. It’s more of a DIY home security thing and lacks the sophistication of other systems. But it’s far less expensive and should still be a good option.
More info at Ring
The bottom line
If you’re looking for alternatives to the legacy alarm vendors, both Nest Secure and Ring Alarm should be intriguing options — especially if you’re already using products from either ecosystem.
Nest Secure is more expensive. I could rig up all of the doors and windows of my home with Ring Alarm and have money left over for more motion detectors. On the other hand, Nest Secure may make more sense if you’ve got a Nest Thermostat or Nest Cam and want to have products in as few ecosystems as possible.
I’ve got Nest products in my home. I’ve got Ring products in my home. Both work well, though Nest’s software tends to work a little better in my experience (your mileage may vary), and often is easier to set up. On the other hand, I love my Ring doorbell.
I’d look at this as a couple of good options for different budgets. And, again, we’ll have to see how the thing actually work once Ring Alarm is released.
The app’s called ‘YouTubeAuto’ and you can download it now.
Android Auto had a surprisingly big presence at this year’s CES. Wireless connectivity and full Google Assistant support are the two main features that are coming to Android Auto, and now there’s an app you can download that lets you watch YouTube videos while in the car.
The app is called “YouTubeAuto” and it was created by developer Kiran Kumar. You can browse all the latest trending videos, check out new uploads from channels you’re subscribed to, and search through YouTube’s entire catalog of clips. It’s essentially a port of the regular YouTube app for Android phones and tablets, and while some of the UI looks a bit stretched off and janky, you do have access to just about every YouTube feature that you’d find in the mobile app.
I certainly don’t recommend watching YouTube videos while driving, and this something you’ll see a warning for every time you open the app. With that said, if there’s a podcast, song, or other video that you can just listen to in the background, this might be worth checking out.
YouTubeAuto isn’t available in the Play Store as it violates Android Auto’s guidelines, but you can download the APK file now from Kumar’s website.
Android Auto is fantastic with the addition of Google Assistant and wireless connectivity
Call me a princess. I dare you.
I’m a child of the 90’s, and as such, I was raised on Disney Princess movies. Everyone thinks princesses — and everything around them — should be light, bright, and saccharine. Well, we’ve got a princess theme that brings our favorite royals into the lovely embrace of the dark. Whether you kick it old-school with Snow White or rock the harem pants with Jasmine, we’ve got you covered for the six “original” Disney Princesses. Sorry, Raps, we’ll get to you later.
This six-facet theme pack is built upon Nova Launcher, using subgrid positioning to get our icons placed around the dockless home screen and tint both our folders and app drawer. If you’re an Action Launcher user, you’ll have a slightly harder time positioning your home screen icons, but Quicktheme will make quick work of coloring the folders and app drawers.
These wallpapers originally came from a post on Disney Style of papercut Disney Princess wallpapers. They’re cute they’re colorful, but the darks aren’t nearly as dark as they could be, and the colors are a tad pastel. We’ve tweaked the exposure and layering on these wallpapers to produce more vivid colors and blacker blacks.
- Snow White
How to apply your wallpaper
Long-press an open space on your home screen.
Tap Pick image.
Select your downloaded princess wallpaper.
Make sure your image is centered on the screen to your liking.
Tap Set wallpaper.
Icons and Folders
These dark wallpapers deserve dark icons, and no pack does simple, refined black icons quite like Zwart icon pack. Before applying the icon pack, position your icons around the screen outside the black areas. For Ariel and Jasmine, position your icons in a sort of gentle slope over the screen. For Snow White and Belle, arrange your icons above the princesses in the second quarter of the screen, leaving room for the widgets to come. For Aurora, surround the royal couple with your icons.
For Cinderella, line up the icons on the left-hand side of the screen. If you want an extra little bit of magic, you can set the phone icon over the glass slipper and then set the icon to a blank .png image. This way, when you tap the slipper, you get the dialer.
Tap the three-line menu icon in the top left corner.
Tap your launcher to apply the icons.
Theming folders and app drawers in Nova Launcher
This theme features black icons on a wallpaper that has black in it, and that can make the app drawer a bit of a beast to read, so we’re going to help keep things easily visible by adding a royal hue to our folders and app drawer so that icons will pop instead of fading into the darkness. Each princess has her own hue for this process, and here are the hex color codes we’ll be using in a moment:
- Snow White – #B20058C0
- Cinderella – #B20068A0
- Aurora – #B2D71475
- Ariel – C4189070
- Belle – #C4F8A818
- Jasmine – #C428A0A0
Open Nova Settings.
Input the hex code for your princess as listed at the top of this section.
Go back to the main Nova Settings menu.
Tap App & widget drawers.
Tap the first color in Recents, which should be the color we just applied to our folders.
The Pixel 2’s home screen style may be a bit controversial to some, but the At A Glance widget that it touts is a very handy widget, and since it’s transparent, it blends with many, many themes. While the original At A Glance widget is only available on the Pixel Launcher, Another Widget is available for everyone and is even better than the original, as it’s customizable.
Long-press a blank space on the home screen until a menu appears.
Drag and drop Another Widget onto your home screen.
In the widget editing window, Tap See your Events.
Allow Another Widget calendar permissions to see your events.
Tap Control the Weather.
Allow Another Widget location permissions to see where you are and get weather info for it.
(Optional) Tap Tap on weather opens.
(Optional) Select your favorite weather app to open.
Tap the home button.
Long-press and drag your new Another Widget to your intended place on the home screen. For Belle, drag the widget to the bottom of the screen. For everyone else (except Aurora), drag it to the top.
Resize the widget to make it one row high, or half a row high if you want to keep the widget small and subdued.
1Weather Widget for Aurora
There wasn’t enough room for an Another Widget to fit comfortably on the Aurora theme alongside the thorny music widget and the icons, but I think I found something even better: a nice pink temperature widget from 1Weather, which blends right into Aurora’s skirt. If you wanted to do this with any of the other princesses, all you’ll need to do with swap Aurora’s bright pink to a hue that matches the princess of your choice.
Long-press a blank space on the home screen until a menu appears.
Under 1Weather, drag and drop a 1Weather 2×1 widget onto the skirt of Aurora’s dress.
In the widget editing window that appears, tap Background color.
Tap Custom (the rainbow).
Set the color to a nice bright pink and then tap OK.
Uncheck Show refresh.
Long-press and drag your widget to better align it within Aurora’s dress.
Resize the widget until just the temperature is showing.
Melodi Music Widgets
Music is an integral part of a princess’s life, especially ones that are so iconic they have their own songs. Whether you’re singing ‘Cinderella’ or ‘Belle’, ‘Part of Your World’ or ‘Whole New World’, music widgets can add an extra bit of flair to a home screen while also giving us quick control of our currently playing music. Each of the princess themes employs a different widget from the Melodi for Kustom pack, and as such, to implement them we’ll also need KWGT Pro. Perfect princess widgets might look like they take a whole lot of work, but trust me, these are easier than whistling a happy tune, and here’s how it goes:
Long-press a blank space on the home screen until a menu appears.
Under KWGT press and drag a 2×2 KWGT widget to your home screen. For Snow White, Ariel, and Jasmine, drag the widget to the bottom of the screen. For Cinderella, Aurora, and Belle, drag the widget to the top of the screen.
Long-press the new KWGT until a menu appears.
Resize the widget to fit the music komponent to come:
- For Ariel and Cinderella: resize the widget into a square slightly left of the center on the screen. For Ariel, you should aim for the square to sit completely within the rock she’s perched on, for Cinderella, set the square above Cinderella’s head.
- For Snow White, Aurora, and Belle, resize the widget to cover 1 or 1.5 rows of the home screen from edge to edge.
- For Jasmine, resize the widget to cover the bottom third of the screen.
Tap the new KWGT to configure it.
Under Installed, tap Melodi.
Select the Melodi Preset for your princess:
- Snow White: Melodi_9
- Cinderella: Melodi_11
- Aurora: Melodi_6
- Ariel: Melodi_12
- Belle – Melodi_14
- Jasmine – Melodi_13
Tap Layer in the center bar.
Tap the – and + icons to adjust the scale of your widget to fit the widget box. Start at 100 and adjust up and down as needed.
Tap Save (the floppy disc icon in the top bar). At this point, Ariel’s widget is done.
Tap Items in the center bar.
Tap the Music komponent.
For Cinderella, tap the toggle for NiteMode to On. Tap Save and Cinderella’s widget is done.
Tap Background Color.
- For Aurora and Belle, type in #FF000000 and then tap the color box underneath it.
- For Snow White, type in 00000000 and then tap the color box underneath it.
- For Jasmine, type in D0000000 and then tap the color box underneath it.
Tap Save (the floppy disc icon in the top bar) and return to the home screen. The widget is complete.
Practically Princess Perfect
Whether you take it easy with just a wallpaper and an icon pack or you get down and dirty with KWGT for that perfect widget, I hope you give these royal home screen themes a try. They are regal, they are radiant, and they’re not blinding beacons of white, glitter and glitz, which is proof positive that you can be a princess while still loving all themes dark and handsome. Which theme is your favorite? Which princess do you take after (or wish you did)? Nerd out with me in the comments, and tell us what themes you’d like to see me conquer in the future!
If your Wi-Fi derps while using Google Home or Chromecast, you’re not alone.
Google’s been trying its hand at connected home gadgets for a few years now, and now that it has devices like the Chromecast, Google Home, and soon Smart Displays, it’s clear now more than ever that this is a market it wants to dominate. Before that happens, however, Google needs to issue a fix to a bug that’s recently caused Wi-Fi networks to go dark when using these gadgets.
According to the folks at Android Police, the issue first appeared with the Google Home Max and TP-Link Archer C7 router. Users reported that the router would go offline and be inaccessible as soon as the Home Max was added to their network, and shortly after this, TP-Link issued a software update through its beta channel that supposedly fixed the issue.
However, after this update was released, more and more complaints appeared. More people were quick to report that other Home devices, Chromecast/Cast-enabled products, and even other routers were exhibiting the same problem.
If this sounds familiar, that’s because users of the Nexus Player ran into a similar roadblock last September. MDNS packets are used to keep products with Cast technology online and available to use, but rather than sending these packets at a steady rate every 20 seconds, the Home Max and other gadgets are doing so at a much faster rate and causing routers to overload and shutdown.
Google has since responded and said that it’s actively looking into a fix, and considering just how many Google Homes were sold this holiday season, the sooner the better.
Google and Qualcomm are poised to put assistants in all the things
Many car manufacturers have joined the modern era by adopting Android Auto, Apple CarPlay or both, but not Toyota. It insisted on going its own way, and that has usually meant skipping its cars entirely if you cared about smartphone integration. Thankfully, the automaker has seen the light. The 2019 Avalon and future models (including Lexus vehicles) with an Entune 3.0 or Enform 2.0 system will support Apple CarPlay, letting you use the more sophisticated apps from your iPhone instead of making do with limited built-in features. CarPlay will be standard on all Avalon trim levels when the sedan goes on sale in late spring, although that’s no guarantee it’ll be standard on other models.
A spokesperson told MacRumors that CarPlay would initially be limited to US models, and that there’s no wireless option. Also, there’s no mention of Android Auto. If you carry an Android phone, you’ll have to use the Avalon’s Alexa voice control and smartwatch support. You do get Qi wireless charging and a WiFi hotspot feature, however.
Toyota hasn’t outlined pricing for the Avalon, but its role as Toyota’s flagship sedan suggests it won’t be trivial. As such, the car giant isn’t quite going toe-to-toe with smartphone-friendly rivals like Honda or Volkswagen, which offer Android Auto and CarPlay across a wide range of designs. It’ll be a while before you can get a seamless smartphone interface in a new Corolla. Even so, it’s good to know that the feature is at least on the horizon — this closes a gaping hole and lets you focus your buying decision more on driving dynamics and style than on in-car tech.
Click here to catch up on the latest news from NAIAS 2018!
Via: AppleInsider, MacRumors
Apple faces its first legal action over Meltdown and Spectre in the United States, even though the vulnerabilities were found to affect nearly all computers and other devices, according to court documents reviewed by MacRumors.
Meltdown and Spectre are serious hardware-based vulnerabilities that take advantage of the speculative execution mechanism of a CPU, allowing hackers to gain access to sensitive information. All modern Intel, ARM, AMD, and Nvidia processors are affected, with many patches and mitigations already released.
Anthony Bartling and Jacqueline Olson filed a class action complaint against Apple last week in a U.S. district court in San Jose on behalf of anyone who purchased a device with an ARM-based processor designed by Apple, ranging from the A4 to A11 Bionic chips used in iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, and Apple TV models.
The complaint alleges that Apple has known about the design defects giving rise to the Meltdown and Spectre vulnerabilities since at least June 2017, and could have disclosed details to the public more promptly.
An excerpt from the complaint:
ARM Holdings PLC, the company that licenses the ARM architecture to Apple, admits that it was notified of the Security Vulnerabilities in June 2017 by Google’s Project Zero and that it immediately notified its architecture licensees (presumably, including Apple) who create their own processor designs of the Security Vulnerabilities.
The complaint added that it is unlikely Apple would be able to fully and adequately release fixes for Meltdown and Spectre without the performance of its processors decreasing by between five and 30 percent.
Apple addressed Meltdown in macOS High Sierra 10.13.2 and iOS 11.2, while Spectre mitigations were introduced in a macOS 10.13.2 supplemental update and iOS 11.2.2, both of which were released early last week. The vulnerabilities have also been addressed in older versions of macOS and OS X.
Despite one claim that Apple’s patch for Spectre resulted in a significant performance decrease on one developer’s iPhone 6s, Apple said its testing indicated that the Safari-based mitigations had no measurable impact on its Speedometer and ARES-6 tests and an impact of less than 2.5 percent on the JetStream benchmark.
The complaint expects at least 100 customers to be part of the proposed class, with the combined sum of compensatory and punitive damages expected to exceed $5 million if the case proceeds to trial.
A group of Israelis have filed a request with the Haifa District Court to file a class action lawsuit against Apple, Intel, and ARM over Meltdown and Spectre as well, according to local news publication Hamodia.
iPhone Slowdown Lawsuits Continue to Mount
Apple continues to face an increasing number of lawsuits that either accuse the company of intentionally slowing down older iPhones, or at least of failing to disclose power management changes it made starting in iOS 10.2.1.
In the United States, the iPhone maker now faces at least 39 class action complaints as of January 15, according to court documents compiled by MacRumors. Additional lawsuits have been filed in France, Israel, Russia, Korea, and Vietnam, with another pending in Canada, bringing the total to 45.
Many of the lawsuits demand Apple compensate all iPhone users who have experienced slowdowns, offer free battery replacements, refund customers who purchased brand new iPhones to regain maximum performance, and as Apple has already promised, add more detailed info to iOS about a device’s battery health.
We’ve already answered many frequently asked questions about Apple’s power management process, and covered the issue extensively, so read our past coverage for more information about the matter.
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There’s a spot on the corner of Paradise Road and Sahara Avenue in Las Vegas where you can stand, facing the convention center, and see ads for Huawei, Hisense, Bosch and naked women. The tech-branded tents and billboards have now disappeared, soon replaced by different ads specific to a different industry, but for one week in January every year, Sin City is overrun with technology companies for CES.
The newsstand offering images of nude women isn’t directly connected to CES, but it’s still there, in the background of the entire show — this idea of women as a commodity, rather than thought leaders, creatives, entrepreneurs or even a viable market. The Consumer Technology Association, which puts on CES every year, came under fire in November when it announced the 2018 lineup of keynote speakers, all of whom were men. White men, in fact, aside from one speaker.
Tech-industry leaders, people on Twitter and groups like Gender Avenger noticed the lack of women in the keynote lineup and started the hashtag #CESSoMale. Others compiled lists of female tech leaders who could potentially host a keynote address, noting that this would be the second year in a row with no female keynote speakers.
“When the lineup was announced, I immediately imagined all the women like me, sitting in a dark room, watching the stage and waiting for that sign of a future in which they could see themselves — and waiting, and waiting, and waiting, and having that not happen,” Sonos chief marketing officer Joy Howard said. “That feeling is really demoralizing when you’re trying to be a part of the future of technology.”
CTA senior vice president Karen Chupka penned a blog post in December addressing the outcry. It reads, in part, as follows:
To keynote at CES, the speaker must head (president/CEO level) a large entity who has name recognition in the industry. As upsetting as it is, there is a limited pool when it comes to women in these positions. We feel your pain. It bothers us, too. The tech industry and every industry must do better.
Chupka and CTA president Gary Shapiro promised to add women to the keynote lineup, but they didn’t. The CTA did, however, redesign the keynote page, adding women from smaller conferences to the main hub.
For many women at CES, the lack of female representation in the keynote wasn’t surprising. It wasn’t even the CTA’s sole fault. A 2016 study by the National Center for Women and Information Technology found women held 57 percent of all professional occupations, yet only 25 percent of all computing jobs. These figures were even lower for non-white women: Asian women held 5 percent of jobs in the computing industry, black women held 3 percent and Latinas just held 1 percent.
To be in 2018 and still have a CES where there are no female [keynotes] — it’s really disappointing. I can’t say surprising, but disappointing to say the least.
Dr. Knatokie Ford, founder of Fly Sci
A handful of tech industry leaders have recently lost their jobs over claims of sexual harassment or encouraging a sexist culture, including Hyperloop One co-founder Shervin Pishevar and former Uber CEO Travis Kalanick.
Because of these facts, and based on copious amounts of personal experience in the tech space, Dr. Knatokie Ford wasn’t shocked at the CES keynote lineup. She’s founder of consulting group Fly Sci Enterprise and served as senior policy adviser for the White House Office of Science and Technology under President Barack Obama.
“It’s disappointing most of all, especially given that there have been so many conversations happening for so long about the importance of diversity and inclusion,” she said. “To be in 2018 and still have a CES where there are no female [keynotes] — it’s really disappointing. I can’t say surprising, but disappointing to say the least.”
Ford was a speaker at the Boom Boom Room, a CES-adjacent event for women in technology hosted by Sonos. It was an intimate, four-hour session held in the Villas at The Mirage, featuring women leaders in tech and music. The talks were held outside on the first day of CES, in a small white tent under gray skies and pounding rain, but the event itself was warm. Laughter regularly punctuated the rolling drops of rain as women like Dr. Ford and iHeartMedia EVP and CMO Gayle Troberman shared stories of challenges and triumph in male-dominated workspaces.
The Boom Boom Room extended beyond tech to include members of the music industry as well. Leah Julius is the bassist of the band Thunderpussy, which was featured at the event.
“I wish I was surprised,” she said about the lack of female representation in tech. “No, I’m not surprised. It feels really similar actually to the music industry in that it still is very male-dominated, obviously. But it feels like this year, and just kind of this time, things are feeling different in general. Talking to other women here in tech, it seems like they’re feeling it, too.”
Sexism and sexual harassment are hot topics on the mainstream stage, with women across a range of industries speaking out about their own experiences and demanding change. The #MeToo movement saw women around the globe sharing personal stories of sexual harassment at work, while the Time’s Up campaign dominated the dialogue at the Golden Globes, as female actresses wore black and stood with activists on the red carpet. With events like the Boom Boom Room, the tech industry is part of this conversation, too.
One point that many female tech leaders come back to is the idea that companies are making a bad business decision by essentially ignoring half of the population — half of their total addressable market. Liz Klinger is CEO of Lioness, a company that makes smart vibrators and recently launched Artgasm, a project that turns female orgasms into works of art. Klinger noticed a lack of women-led companies at CES in 2017 and she vowed to get Lioness at the show this year. Though she said Lioness ticked all of the CTA’s boxes for inclusion in Eureka Park, its application was denied and the company was eventually even turned away from a women-focused event in the CES Girls’ Lounge. Lioness ended up showcasing Artgasm at the Hangover Suite at Caesar’s Palace and at a booth in the Sands center, thanks to interested investors.
Klinger published a blog post about her experience, where she writes the following:
CES could not only do a lot of good by having more female-centric companies showing at the officially sanctioned show — but also it’s good business for attending retailers and industry partners. Especially considering that women are 50 percent of the customers and users in the world. It’s not just a feel good thing or a politically correct thing, though I’m certainly biased towards providing more options for women. It’s also a money-making opportunity for everyone involved.
This is an important message, according to Dr. Ford. She said companies — and the CTA — won’t simply do the right thing because it’s right. They’re looking out for their bottom line. It’s a good thing then, she said, that diversity is good for business.
“It’s not going to be overnight and it’s not going to be easy, but I do think that we will see progress, especially because we have a couple things in our favor, especially when we talk about diversity in business, whether it’s in tech or entertainment,” Dr. Ford said. “There’s this tremendous case for the advantage of it. It’s not going to be at the detriment of the bottom line.”
Click here to catch up on the latest news from CES 2018.
In 2016 Acura showed off its “Precision Cockpit” concept that included a touchpad with 1:1 mapping to a central display. It’s supposed to improve on both touchscreens, which can require an awkward reach from the driver to somewhere out of their line of sight, and existing remotes that try to copy a mouse-controlled UI.
Now the company has announced that technology is coming to the 2019 RDX branded as a “True Touchpad.” This Android-based car OS is the first use of a touchpad with absolute positioning in a car, making sure that wherever the driver taps on the pad corresponds to what is shown on the central 10.2-inch screen, which is mounted high up, in the driver’s line of sight. Combined with a new natural language interface and an interactive heads-up display for the driver, it’s supposed to be easier to use than any car software we’ve seen before.
This upcoming version of Acura’s luxury SUV has other changes as well, in a “top-to-bottom” remake that will launch around the middle of this year. It brings Acura Super-Handling All Wheel Drive (SH-AWD) back to the RDX, and includes an NSX-inspired driving dynamics system that lets drivers choose between Sport, Sport+, Comfort and Snow modes. Every 2019 RDX will include AcuraWatch driver assist features, while optional additions include the 4G AcuraLink WiFi hotspot and surround-view camera system.
An ultra-wide panoramic moonroof is standard, and the prototype is fitted with four thin ceiling-mounted speakers as part of its 16-channel, 710-watt Acura ELS Studio 3D audio system.
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