Franklin Robotics’ Tertill wins the pitch-off at TC Sessions: Robotics

See the original posting on TechCrunch

 We’re pleased to report that a so-called Roomba for weeds, Franklin Robotics’ Tertill, won the TC Sessions: Robotics pitch-off. Because if there’s a task that should be relegated to a robot, it’s weeding a garden. For winning the pitch-off, Franklin Robotics was awarded an exhibit table in Disrupt SF’s Startup Alley. “We actually tried to get away from… Read More

Whenever Trump plays in a shiny new truck, a Republican healthcare bill dies

See the original posting on Boing Boing

Toot toot! If you see Trump playing truck driver while sitting in a big shiny truck, you can bet a Republican healthcare bill has just failed. It’s happened twice so far.

According to the A.V. Club:

The first incidence was way back on March 23 when the president’s healthcare bill was dealt its first seemingly mortal blow while still in the House. The president responded then by sitting in a truck, honking a horn.

And on Monday, during the Made in America product tour at the White House, Trump was playing fireman in a gleaming red firetruck and waving out the window. “Where’s the fire?” he asked Vice President Mike Pence. “Put it out fast!” Meanwhile, on the same day, the healthcare replacement bill failed yet again.

The play day didn’t go unnoticed by Republicans. In one of CNN writer David Wright’s tweets, quoting a Republican lawmaker: “Top Republican: [Trump] was playing with a firetruck & trying on a cowboy hat as the bill was collapsing, and he had no clue.”

Here’s more from last night’s MSNBC:

Once you use this, you won’t ever want another jar tool

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The reason it’s hard to open jar lids is because the vacuum seal is pulling the lid tightly against the jar. Once in awhile, the vacuum seal is so strong that I can’t open it. That’s when I grab my Jarkey, a $3 plastic lever that effortlessly breaks the seal, making it easy to open. I always try to open jars with my bare hands, then use the Jarkey as a backup. My wife goes straight for the Jarkey, because she’s smarter than I am.

Watch “Raiders of the Lost Darth”

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Fabrice Mathieu delivered this fantastic new cut of his Raiders of the Lost Darth mashup.

Cast: Harrison Ford, Alfred Molina, Paul Freeman, Carrie Fisher, Fred Sorenson, Warwick Davis, and C-3PO as “The Idol”.

Films and Characters created by George Lucas and Steven Spielberg.

Films used:
– “Raiders of the lost ark”
– “Star Wars”: episodes IV, V, VI, VII.
– “Caravan of Courage: An Ewok Adventure”.
Music by John Williams.

Marvel’s Oculus VR game perfectly captures the feeling of embodying a superhero

See the original posting on The Verge

One of the more intriguing announcements to come out of Disney’s biennial D23 expo this past weekend was Marvel’s new virtual reality game, made in partnership with Facebook-owned Oculus VR. The title, called Marvel Powers United VR, is not due out until 2018 as an exclusive for the Rift headset, but we got the opportunity to try out an early build of it at the conference.

As you might expect, Marvel Powers United VR boasts several different characters of varying sizes, shapes, and skill sets, and when playing for the first time I could chose between Rocket Raccoon, Deadpool, Captain Marvel, and The Hulk.

My colleague Susana Polo from Polygon had told…

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This luxury leather keyboard is ridiculous, but I want one

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AZIO is releasing a “luxury” mechanical keyboard, and it’s undoubtedly a waste of money. Yet, I want one. If you’re in the market for a mechanical keyboard, you can pick up a better option like a WASD or a Matias for around the same price. Even the Surface and Apple keyboards are better options given the extra shortcut keys they come with.

But the AZIO? Well, it looks like an industrial typewriter dipped in rose gold, it works over Bluetooth, and you can get one for $110 on Indiegogo (if it gets funded). It’s cheap enough not to be an outrageous expense, and it’s opulent enough to look like something that would be crafted for a royal family.

Photo: AZIO

The AZIO Retro Classic keyboard comes in three colors — Onyx,…

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Apple has started blogging to draw attention to its AI work

See the original posting on The Verge

After years of near-silence, Apple is slowly starting to make a bit of noise about its work on artificial intelligence. Last December the iPhone maker shared its first public research paper on the topic; this June it announced new tools to speed up machine learning on the iPhone; and today it started blogging. Sort of.

The company’s new website, titled “Apple Machine Learning Journal,” is a bit grander than a blog. But it looks like it will have the same basic function: keeping readers up to date in a relatively accessible manner. “Here, you can read posts written by Apple engineers about their work using machine learning technologies,” says the opening post, before inviting feedback from researchers, students, and developers.

As the…

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Bixby feels more like a return of the old Samsung than a path to the future

See the original posting on The Verge

After months of delays, Bixby, Samsung’s new voice-powered assistant, is finally rolling out to the Galaxy S8 and S8 Plus in the US. Billed as one of the highlight features of the S8, Samsung sees Bixby as the being in the center of future device interactions, whether that device is your phone, TV, washing machine, or something else entirely.

I (along with thousands of others) have been testing Bixby for weeks as part of Samsung’s public preview program and have a very different view from Samsung. Instead of seeing Bixby as the future of how I interact with my phone, it feels more like a return of Samsung’s old ways.

Photo by Vjeran Pavic / The Verge

Samsung’s mobile strategies have changed dramatically over the…

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Telltale Games announces new seasons of Batman, Walking Dead, and The Wolf Among Us

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Telltale Games is bringing back three of its best series. Things will kick off with a second season of the developer’s take on Batman, the first episode of a planned five-part series will debut on August 8th. The first season of the game wrapped up last December, and was a surprisingly refreshing take on the Bruce Wayne / Batman dynamic. Telltale says that returning players will be able to carry over their decisions from the first season into the new story. Here’s how the studio describes the setup for season 2:

In this latest chapter, both Bruce Wayne and Batman will be forced into precarious new roles. The Riddler has returned to terrorize Gotham City, but his gruesome puzzles merely foreshadow an even greater crisis. With the arrival…

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