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Month: July 2019

De De Pyaar De Box Office Week 1 Ajay Devgns Film a


first_img Read: Aladdin Movie Review: Will Smith is a Charming Showstopper in an Enthralling FantasyOn the film crossing 60 cr mark, film’s actress Rakul Preet thanked the audiences in a tweet on Friday. While urging fans to watch De De Pyaar De, she wrote, “Wooohooo so much love for @DeDePyaarDe!! Keep it going and book tickets (sic).”Wooohooo so much love for @DeDePyaarDe!! Keep it going and book tickets here: https://t.co/vPBzwy2uQG 😍 @ajaydevgn #Tabu @AkivAli @TSeries @LuvFilms @itsBhushanKumar @luv_ranjan @gargankur pic.twitter.com/4EwncRXNwp— Rakul Preet Singh (@Rakulpreet) May 24, 2019With Salman Khan’s Bharat releasing on June 5, De De Pyaar De still has ten days to capitalise on the gains it has made till now. Ajay’s film will be facing competition from Arjun Kapoor’s India’s Most Wanted and Will Smith’s Aladdin this week. However, going by the audience response, the love is in Ajay’s favour.Read: PM Narendra Modi Biopic Reviews: Critics Call it a Hagiography, Vivek Oberoi’s Acting Panned Also read: India’s Most Wanted Review: Arjun Kapoor’s Film Cuts to the Chase Minus ThrillsFollow @News18Movies for more Ajay Devgn, Tabu and Rakul Preet Singh-starrer De De Pyaar De has completed a successful week one at the theatres, since it opened on May 17 last week. Figures from trade analysts is the proof of all the love the comedy flick has been garnering from all quarters of India. At the end of the first week, De De Pyaar De’s box office collection, which stands at a cumulative 61.05 cr, has pegged it as a hit, the second one from Ajay after Total Dhamaal.Trade analyst Taran Adarsh gave a highlight of day wise earnings of De De Pyaar De in a tweet. As per his figures, the Akiv Ali directorial earned 10.41 cr on Friday (including Thursday previews), 13.39 cr on Tuesday, 14.74 cr on Sunday, which took the film’s first weekend earnings to 39 cr. In the first week, the film’s collections started dipping, but were still enough to cross the 50 cr mark by Tuesday as it reached 61.05 by the end of its first week. Take a look at De De Pyaar De’s earning pattern in India here:#DeDePyaarDe has two more weekends to score and pack an impressive total [till #Bharat arrives]… Fri 10.41 cr [incl Thu previews], Sat 13.39 cr, Sun 14.74 cr, Mon 6.19 cr, Tue 6.10 cr, Wed 5.74 cr, Thu 4.48 cr. Total: ₹ 61.05 cr. India biz. #DDPD— taran adarsh (@taran_adarsh) May 24, 2019 Ajay DevgnAjay Devgn filmsAkiv AliAladdin First Published: May 24, 2019, 4:34 PM ISTlast_img read more


Mohit Raina On His Web Series Kaafir



They Worked Hard Praise for Rahul Gandhi Priyanka Comes from Unlikely Quarters


first_imgThe Shiv Sena Tuesday expressed confidence that a government headed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi will be re-elected for a second term as the exit polls show a “clear trend” in the BJP-led NDA’s favour.At the same time, it also praised Congress chief Rahul Gandhi and his sister and party general secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra for their “hard work”, saying their party will get enough seats to bag the leader of opposition’s post in the new Lok Sabha. Elections to 542 seats of 543-member Lok Sabha ended on Sunday and counting of votes is scheduled for Thursday.Most exit polls have forecast another term for Prime Minister Modi, with some of them projecting that the BJP-led NDA would get over 300 seats to comfortably cross the majority mark of 272 in the Lok Sabha.”There was no need for political pundits to say the Modi government will be re-elected. The ground situation was such that people were leading the poll campaign and had made up their mind to vote Modi back to power,” the Sena said in an editorial in party mouthpiece ‘Saamana’.Noting that theexit polls show a “clear trend” in favour of the Modi-led government, it said there are also predictions of the BJP having a clear lead in the Congress-ruled Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh, and also in West Bengal, where the Mamata Banerjee-led TMC is in power.”In Maharashtra, the Sena-BJP alliance will register a historic win,” the Marathi daily claimed. “Modi will be the prime minister again and the Congress and other opposition parties will fail to make a mark. But, it is better to wait till May 23 for the actual results,” said the Sena, which is an ally of the BJP at the Centre and in Maharashtra.The editorial also had a word of praise for Rahul Gandhi and his sister Priyanka Gandhi Vadra. “They worked hard. The Congress will be successful as a strong opposition party,” it said.”In 2014, Rahul Gandhi could not win (enough) seats to get the leader of opposition’s post. This time, the Congress will have a leader of opposition in the Lok Sabha. This will surely be Rahul Gandhi’s success,” the Uddhav Thackeray-led party said.In the last Lok Sabha elections, the BJP bagged 282 seats while the Congress managed to win only 44 seats. In order to get the leader of opposition’s post, the party concerned must have at least 10 per cent of the total strength of the House. exit poll results 2019Lok Sabha elections 2019Narendra ModiPriyanka Gandhi First Published: May 21, 2019, 1:50 PM ISTlast_img read more


Bihar Giants Shrink Overnight as Modi Forces Lalu Family Kushwaha to Rewrite


first_imgThe 2019 Lok Sabha elections have turned out to be a waterloo for the three regional parties and their leaders aspiring to play a crucial role in Bihar politics.The three regional parties — the Rashtriya Lok Samata Party (RLSP), Hindustani Awam Morcha (HAM) and Vikassheel Insan Party (VIP) — have failed to open their account and their leaders have lost the polls with huge margins. The landslide victory of NDA in Bihar has exposed the tall claims of these leaders and proved beyond doubt that they were not a factor in the polls in Bihar. They together contested 11 Lok Sabha seats as part of the grand alliance (mahagathbandhan).The worst victim of the so-called ‘Modi tsunami’ is the RLSP president and former union minister Upendra Kushwaha, who lost from the two constituencies — Karakat, from where he is the sitting MP, and Ujiyarpur, which is his home constituency — he contested this time. Kushwaha had managed to get altogether five Lok Sabha seats in the grand alliance including Karakar, Ujiyarpur, East Champaran, West Champaran and Jamui (SC).Kushwaha had maintained that he was not contesting from more than one seat out of fear of defeat but to teach a lesson to both BJP and Janata Dal (U) and the BJP because both the parties wanted to finish him off politically. The RLSP led by Kushwaha had fought the 2014 Lok Sabha polls as an NDA ally and won three seats – Karakat, Sitamarhi and Jehanabad.However, two of its MPs — Arun Kumar of Jehanabad and Ram Kumar Sharma of Sitamarhi — rebelled against Kushwaha accusing him of running the party arbitrarily. Party’s two MLAs also floated a separate outfit and supported the NDA.With his crushing defeat, Kushwaha’s ambition to become the sole leader of the Koeri (Kushwaha) community has been shattered. He will have to start afresh and mull over the reasons of his defeat before embarking for the 2020 Bihar assembly elections.Soon after the exit poll results were declared, Kushwaha had threatened his political opponents of bloodshed if there was any attempt to tamper with the Lok Sabha results.HAM leader and former Bihar chief Minister Jitan Ram Manjhi lost from Gaya, his home constituency, against JD (U)’s Vijay Kumar Manjhi. HAM had contested three seats as part of the mahagathbandhan from Gaya (SC), Aurangabad and Nalanda.Manjhi seems to have lost his credibility as leader of Dalits, especially the Musahar community, which has sizeable population in Gaya and central parts of Bihar. But the most worrying factor for him is that his party may lose the status of regional party, if it does not win even one seat.A six-time MLA, Manjhi has jumped from Congress to RJD and then to JD(U) before floating his own party HAM after he was unceremoniously removed from the post of Chief Minister. His image has sunk because of his frequent shifts from one party to other for individual benefit.The VIP chief Mukesh Sahani, also called as ‘Son of Mallah’, stands completely vanquished as he lost from Khagaria by a substantial vote against LJP nominee and sitting MP Mehboob Ali Kaiser. His party’s two other candidates from Madhubani and Muzaffarpur also lost to the BJP nominees.“The boat of Son of Mallah has sunk in the riverine belt of Khagaria, which has sizable population of Mallahs and other members of the fishing community,” said Rakesh Nishad, a member of the Bihar Nishad Sangh.Mukesh was projected as the sole leader of the Mallah or Nishad community and it was expected that the grand alliance might take away the chunk votes of his community. But his charisma seems to have waned and now he will have to rework his strategy to command the leadership of the Nishad community, which is numerically preponderant and matters in electoral equations in north Bihar.Almost every political party tries to seek support of the Nishad community, which is the largest community among the 120-odd castes listed in the category of Extremely Backward Castes (EBCs) in Bihar.“These three leaders have been behaving like great gamblers of Bihar politics and taken undue advantage in the past. But now they stand exposed. They need to rework their strategy if they want to survive in politics in future,” said BJP leader Binod Sharma, who recently joined the party from Congress. (The author is a senior journalist. Views expressed are personal.) biharHAMhindustani awam morchaNishad First Published: May 24, 2019, 1:45 PM ISTlast_img read more


Mission Paani Alarming Facts About Water One Should Know



Be Careful With New BJP Members Amit Shahs Diktat Amid Cut Money


first_imgKolkata: Amid allegations of corruption in the West Bengal government, Home Minister Amit Shah has asked BJP leaders in the state to be careful while inducting new members into the party and keep people with tainted image at an arm’s length.Shah’s instructions came six days ago for the BJP MPs who are in New Delhi to attend the parliamentary sessions. Speaking to News18.com, senior BJP leader Mukul Roy said, “Amit-ji has instructed us to tread cautiously while inducting new members. He told us to check their backgrounds and not to rope in anyone with a dubious image. In the BJP, there is no place for people who have a questionable background.”The move comes amid controversy regarding the alleged practice of taking ‘cut money’ or illegal commission to facilitate government schemes by the Trinamool Congress leadership.“Amit Shah had said that people voted for the BJP in Bengal against corruption and muscle power. Therefore, we should be careful while giving membership to people in the BJP.”“From July 6 onwards, we are going to start the membership scrutiny/screening process in all the districts in Kolkata. All the leaders were asked to check the backgrounds of those who joined the party recently. We have a prescribed form and based on its inputs, we will conduct background checks. If required, we will personally visit their houses for cross verification,” he said.News18 has learnt that the central leadership wants to ensure that if found guilty, those who have already managed to get into the saffron brigade will be removed.Recently, former TMC leader Monirul Islam who had switched over to the BJP, offered to resign after several party leaders expressed objection to his induction. A section of them felt that people like him would bring a bad name to the party.After West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee told TMC leaders that she had received complaints of ‘cut money’, protests erupted across the state as people demanded that the bribe money taken by TMC leaders be returned immediately. Amit ShahBJPcut moneyMamata Banerjee First Published: July 4, 2019, 1:41 PM ISTlast_img read more


Amid Political Turmoil Karnataka Monsoon Session to Begin Today


first_img BJPChief Minister HD KumaraswamycongressJD(S) First Published: July 12, 2019, 12:00 AM IST Bengaluru: The monsoon session of the Karnataka legislature will begin here Friday with the HD Kumaraswamy-led Congress-JD(S) coalition government on a sticky wicket following resignation of 16 of its MLAs.The 11-day-long session is likely to begin with both the assembly and council paying rich tributes to distinguished personalities of the state who died during the period when both Houses were in recess, including veteran actor, director and playwright Girish Karnad. The spate of resignations pushing the coalition government to the brink of collapse is likely to cast a shadow on the proceedings, though it was expected that the opposition BJP would corner the government on a host of issues including drought management, the cabinets decision to sell 3,667 acres to JSW Steel at Ballari and the alleged IMA group ponzi scam.With 16 of the ruling coalition MLAs resigning, the BJP has demanded Kumaraswamy’s resignation, stating that his government has lost the majority.The BJP has even petitioned Governor Vajubhai Vala seeking his intervention. With 16 resignations yet to be accepted, all eyes are now on the Speaker, who has said he will take a decision only after examining whether they are “voluntary and genuine.”The apex court earlier in the day asked the Speaker to decide “forthwith” about the resignation of 10 rebel MLAs, allowing them to meet him at 6 pm.A Bench headed by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi said the decision taken by the Speaker has to be intimated on Friday when the court takes up the plea by the rebel MLAs.The BJP may also move a no-confidence motion, pushing the government to prove its majority on the floor of the House.Yeddyurappa, when asked about moving a no-confidence motion, had recently said his party will take a decision depending on the political situation that exists.Meanwhile, the state Cabinet that met Thursday amid the crisis, resolved to face the situation “bravely” and “withstand” it unitedly.Expressing confidence that the government would survive, the cabinet that met under the leadership of Kumaraswamy said it was ready to face a no-confidence motion if moved by the opposition BJP.Putting up a brave front, Kumaraswamy Thursday rejected demands for his resignation.”Why should I resign? What is the necessity for me to resign now?” Kumaraswamy shot back to reporters here, amidst the speculation that he could put in his papers in the wake of the crisis.Government’s chief whip Ganesh Prakash Hukkeri has issued a whip asking all MLAs of the ruling parties to attend the session without fail every day till it concludes and vote in favour of bills moved by the government, or face disqualification under the anti-defection law.Passage of certain important bills including the crucial Finance bill also hangs in the balance with treasury benches not having adequate numbers in the House.Responding to a question on the future of the finance bill during the assembly session from Friday, Minister Krishna Byre Gowda told reporters after the cabinet meeting: “Let’s see what happens. The opposition has certain privileges and rights to discuss it and seek a vote and even press for the division.We will not try to override on it. We will give them (opposition) all the opportunity…we are even ready for a vote on it,” he added.Of the 16 MLAs who have resigned, 13 are from the Congress and three from the JD(S). The coalition’s strength in the House is 116 (Congress 78, JD(S) 37 and BSP one), besides the speaker.With the support of the two independents, who resigned from the ministry on Monday, the opposition BJP has 107 MLAs in the 224-member House, where the halfway mark is 113.If the resignations of the 16 MLAs are accepted, the ruling coalition’s tally will be reduced to 100. last_img read more


GPD Pocket sales start now the mini Windows 10 PC hits online


first_imgIf netbooks were any indication, tiny things are fun and people can’t resist buying them. That notion was reinforced with the massively success crowdfunding campaign for the GPD Pocket, a miniature ‘laptop’ with a display scarcely larger than some smartphones. The laptop is now available to buy online, making it available to anyone who needs a super small laptop during times when a phone won’t do. The GPD Pocket isn’t to be mistaken with the GPD WIN, the even tinier device we reviewed back in late 2016. The GPD Pocket is something like the missing link between the GPD WIN and an ordinary laptop (well, netbook), offering a reasonably sized keyboard alongside a trackpoint instead a trackpad and a 7-inch display. The laptop runs Windows 10.There’s a certain appeal to such tiny machines — Sony had a similar one years ago with its Vaio P, though that was back when Vista was the default choice. This model also has a much better display thanks to its Full HD 1080p resolution. That display itself is joined by an Intel Atom x7-X8750 1.6GHz quad-core processor, 8GB of RAM, and 128GB of EMMC storage.The model also has a decent array of ports, including a USB-C port, mini HDMI, a 3.5mm audio jack, and USB 3.0. The included 7000mAh battery gives users up to 5 hours of video playback, no doubt longer if something more conservative is performed. There’s a built-in speaker and microphone, 802.11/a/b/g/n WiFi, and Bluetooth 4.1. It wouldn’t be terribly hard to find a use for a small laptop like this — it would be more comfortable on a plane, for example, than a larger laptop. The big sticking point for many consumers is the ample price tag. The GPD Pocket is now available from online retailer GearBeast for $495 USD, a hefty price tag for something so small. It seems that a tiny machine should top out at the $299 price point; whether the ‘premium’ features are enough to hook buyers is yet to be seen.last_img read more


Galaxy S8 owner fixed its most annoying misfeature


first_imgThis isn’t a hack that most Galaxy S8 owners will actually take to remedy the situation. In fact, this was purely on accident. Nelson actually set out to do something completely different, which involved removing the Galaxy S8’s cover. In that process, however, he managed to accidentally ruin the gasket that fills the gap around the sensor to keep water out.To fix that error, Nelson replaced it with his own waterproof adhesive. But since the material that Samsung used was made specifically for the Galaxy S8 and its fingerprint sensor, off the shelf materials don’t exactly match. The end result was that the fingerprint sensor was no longer flat on Galaxy S8’s back and a bit of material protrudes around it, giving it an easy to find border. The Galaxy S8 was almost perfect. Its one glaring flaw was its fingerprint scanner. Never mind the off-center position that has resulted in many a smudge to the camera, the scanner, being really just a flat, non-tactile surface, was hard to locate with your finger. Owner Quinn Nelson managed to fix that and surround the sensor with a somewhat discrete perimeter around the sensor to make it easier to find. Amusingly, he had to break it before actually “fixing” it. I fixed the annoying Galaxy S8 fingerprint sensor. https://t.co/voNzP9zYoK— Quinn Nelson (@SnazzyQ) August 7, 2017center_img It’s not a perfect solution, of course. Now the sensor juts out from the back, even more than the barely protruding camera. This means that the Galaxy S8 won’t lie flat on a surface anymore. On the up side, it also means that the camera lens won’t directly make contact with a surface either.The fingerprint scanner has been one of the most debated aspect of the Galaxy S8, and Samsung is showing no signs of changing course. Some might even see the Galaxy Note 8 as worse in that regard. But at least now Samsung has put the LED flash in between the sensor and the camera to hopefully lessen the amount of smudges you’d make.SOURCE: Quinn Nelsonlast_img read more


Major macOS High Sierra flaw found How to fix it for now


first_imgToday a bit of a security flaw was found in macOS High Sierra, Apple’s latest MacBook operating system. This flaw includes a few taps of the login submit button, the entering of the name ROOT, and a password field left blank. That’s all it takes to log in to a MacBook with High Sierra onboard. Until Apple submits an update which fixes this security flaw, you’re going to want to follow the directions provided below. Story TimelineWhat’s new in macOS High Sierra [UPDATE: Download released]New Mac public beta update live: macOS High Sierra in effectiOS 11 Beta 4 released: Developer release for iPhone, iPad, macOS High SierraiOS 11, macOS High Sierra, watchOS 4 launch dates announcedHow to download macOS High Sierra today and installApple releases kernel source code for iOS, ARM macOS This vulnerability works over VNC / Apple Remote Desktop, too. So, everyone who ever left their device sitting on, on the internet, without watching what’s going on… There’s going to be some lessoned learned. Hard lessons. This exploit does not appear to work on any version of Apple’s operating system macOS other than macOS High Sierra. For those users out there that have High Sierra in play, follow the following instructions, straight from Apple:Change the root password:1. Choose Apple menu () > System Preferences, then click Users & Groups (or Accounts).2. Click lock icon, then enter an administrator name and password.3. Click Login Options.4. Click Join (or Edit).5. Click Open Directory Utility.6. Click lock icon in the Directory Utility window, then enter an administrator name and password.7. From the menu bar in Directory Utility, choose Edit > Change Root Password…8. Enter a root password when prompted.Apple’s official word on the situation is that they’re currently working on a software update to “address this issue.” If you do not already have a Root User enabled, you’ll have to head over to that same Apple Support link as we’ve quoted above, and enable as such. You can access it via System Preferences>Users & Groups>Click the lock to make changes. Then use “root” with no password. And try it for several times. Result is unbelievable! pic.twitter.com/m11qrEvECs— Lemi Orhan Ergin (@lemiorhan) November 28, 2017 Earlier today Software Craftsmanship Turkey founder Lemi Orhan Ergin submitted the flaw to Apple earlier today presumably immediately after discovery. Oddly, this flaw was submitted using Twitter, right out in the open. While the finding of and reporting of a flaw like this is important work, it’s generally very important to submit said flaw to the software developer in private before making said flaw public.To see this exploit in action, have a peek at the instructions provided below by Ergin. This flaw should be fixed by all users as fast as possible. Apple is currently acting on the situation to find a fix right this minute. last_img read more


Essential Phone sales report suggests its definitely misnamed


first_imgAccording to IDC research director Francisco Jeronimo on Twitter, the Essential Phone only shipped 88,000 units throughout last year. Granted, since the Essential Phone started shipping in July, we’re only looking at shipments for the second half of the year, but still, 88,000 phones shipped over five months isn’t an encouraging sign.At the very least, it’s a far better figure than what we heard last time we checked in at the end of September. At that time, analysts said that the Essential PH-1 had only moved 5,000 units at Sprint stores. Obviously, that didn’t give us a complete picture as the Essential Phone is also available unlocked, but with Sprint serving as the exclusive carrier partner for launch, expectations had to be a fair bit higher than that.Making Sprint the only carrier that offered the phone in-store probably had something to do with these low shipment numbers. For as many people who value being able to buy a phone at full retail price and deciding which carrier they use from there, there still seems to be many more who rely on subsidized devices from their carrier when it comes on buying a new phone. When you’re trying to make a name for yourself in a crowded market, getting your phone in front of as many people as possible is paramount, and carrier exclusivity deals work against that.Of course, the idea that the Sprint deal stifled sales is purely speculation on my part, but it seems likely when the various price drops the Essential Phone has seen don’t appear to have helped. Perhaps Essential can turn things around as we head deeper into 2018? Here’s hoping, but if these numbers from IDC are accurate, it’s got a lot of work ahead of it. Story TimelineHere’s what’s coming to the Essential phone in the futureEssential Phone Review: The Impossible ChallengeEssential Phone price just dropped againEssential Phone: fixing the slippery backside Everyone knew that Andy Rubin’s Essential was going to face challenges in trying to break into the smartphone market. After all, that meant going up against established giants like Apple and Samsung, which both have a significant share of the market that’s going to be difficult to any newcomer to wrestle away. Today we’re finding out just how much the Essential Phone struggled to gain an audience after it first started shipping in July 2017, and the results don’t sound good.last_img read more


Chromebook 4K spotted on its way to reality


first_imgIt makes no sense to have that high resolution a display on a device that only runs a web browser – that’s what people said when the first Chromebook Pixel was released. But Google sold enough to be able to sensibly move on to make another. Google has no Android tablet in the mix at the moment, either.The most recent appearance of a Chrome-based device with a 4K display came from a Reddit user by the name of nbsp. This user found the “Atlas” in a Google Git commit for Chromium OS. The device has a 4K display, and… that’s all we know so far. Cross your fingers Google releases the device in time for the holidays.There’s also a codename “nami” that’s appeared with Kaby Lake in the recent past too – that’s in this document as well. That device has a 2400 x 1600 display. There’s also a 2400 x 1600 device with codename meowth, and another called nautilus. There’s a 1536 x 2048 pixel device that has a note: “detachable.” Imagine yourself a lovely two-piece device and it shall become a reality. You can take a peek at a wide variety of ChromeOS devices at Chromium dot org in the developer info for ChromeOS devices page. There, at the time this article is set to be published, the newest device was released on March 16th of 2018, and that was the Acer Chromebook Spin 11. Stick around as we get closer to the truth – it’s out there on the webs! There’s a codename now for the next most impressive Chromebook in the history of Chromebooks. Google’s code-named this device Atlas, and it’s about to hold the whole world wide web up on its shoulders – that is, a 4K display. A device of this stature would fit right in with Google’s gap in hardware coverage for the highest end of great for ChromeOS devices. Story TimelineChromebook tablets take iPad fight to the classroomAcer Chromebook Tab 10 leads the way on Google’s education quest2018 iPad vs. Acer Chromebook Tab 10: education showdownlast_img read more


Duolingo just got more useful for advanced language learners


first_imgREAD: Duolingo Klingon course now available!If you’re a regular Duolingo user, you’ve likely updated in recent days and, as a consequence of updating, now see golden crowns on each lesson bubble within a language course. Duolingo calls these Crown Levels, explaining that the new feature is a way to help users expand their knowledge of the language. When you finish a skill, you get a Crown Level to go with it. Users who want to dig deeper into any given skill can continue to level up, working through progressively harder lessons within the skill. “This is a total redesign of the skill tree,” says the company, “that solves one of Duolingo’s biggest challenges: remaining fun for casual learners while still offering advanced content for serious learners.”Whereas before a user moved down the skill tree one bubble at a time, they can now continue deeper within a skill. It’s a totally optional expansion, though; users similarly have the option to continue down the skill tree, unlocking new skills without leveling up their crowns. Some users are upset about the change, stating the addition of Crown Levels has resulted in them losing their progress. That’s not the case, though, says Duolingo, which has a megathread on its forum where users can express concerns, get explanations, and more.SOURCE: Duolingo Educational app Duolingo continues to help anyone learn a language for free, but it’s not for everyone. The app enables users to test their current proficiency, work at their own speed, and more. However, many users feel they reach a plateau after which point the app stops helping with their progression, requiring them to look elsewhere for advancement. The company’s latest update may solve that problem.last_img read more


2018 Volkswagen Tiguan LongWheelbase compact adds muchneeded interior room 3rd row in


first_imgStyling inside and out have been given a thorough re-think in the all-new 2018 Volkswagen Tiguan, and the automaker has updated the vehicle’s safety features to include forward collision warning and mitigation (via automatic braking), a blind spot monitoring system, a lane departure warning feature, and adaptive cruise control. Apple CarPlay and Android Auto join the Car-Net connected car services from Volkswagen, and a revised instrument display (called Volkswagen Digital Cockpit) dresses up the Tiguan’s dashboard.Some habits die hard of course: the Volkswagen Tiguan long-wheelbase is still only offered with a single, 2.0-liter four-cylinder turbocharged engine, a solitary situation no doubt brought on by the elimination of turbodiesel power from the VW fleet following the recent emissions scandal. With a rating of 184 horsepower and 221 lb-ft of torque, the new Tiguan finds itself thoroughly mid-pack from a performance perspective, although its older six-speed automatic has been replaced by an eight-speed gearbox. All-wheel drive remains optional with the Volkswagen. The 2018 Volkswagen Tiguan long-wheelbase makes use of the same MQB platform found underneath the Atlas, but it doesn’t embody quite the same plus-size dimensions. That being said, it’s a definite upgrade over the existing U.S. market Tiguan, what with a nearly 11-inch boost in overall length that stretches it out past even the redesigned model that is already on sale in Europe.It’s a decision that makes a lot of sense for Volkswagen, which was roundly criticized for leaving the Tiguan relatively untouched over a period that saw the rest of the compact crossover segment add engine options, extra seating, and advanced safety and infotainment technologies. Also available in a five-passenger model, the LWB Tiguan joins competitors such as the Nissan Rogue in providing an available third row, but more importantly it also boosts its cargo capacity to the point where it is no longer embarrassed by class leaders like the Ford Escape and the Toyota RAV4. Story TimelineVW Tiguan GTE Active Concept shows hybrids can be tough, tooVolkswagen – the tech giant the world had no idea existed2018 Volkswagen Atlas puts VW in the 3-row SUV gameVolkswagen commits to $200M payment to reduce US pollutioncenter_img The Atlas isn’t the only new high-capacity hauler on offer at Volkswagen. After years of making do without any three-row options in its SUV line-up, VW has delivered a second seven-passenger model here at the 2017 Detroit Auto Show in the form of the 2018 Volkswagen Tiguan long-wheelbase edition.last_img read more


Google pulls 29 camera apps from Play Store over security issues


first_imgThe problems were discovered by Trend Micro, which published a detailed report today naming each malicious app, as well as the problems it found. In some cases, the apps would hide their icons so that users had trouble uninstalling; in other cases, they would obscure the fact they were causing full-screen ads to pop up on the user’s phone every time it was unlocked.Those advertisements were described as malicious, in some cases directing the users to adult content or phishing websites. According to the report, the attempts to conceal the problem meant users may have been unaware of what app was causing these advertisements to appear. Perhaps more concerning were instances where apps saved user images to remote servers, where they may have been used for other malicious purposes, such as creating fake social media profiles. Many users were lured in by these apps, which took steps to hide their true nature. The researchers explained that users, in at least some cases, may not have noticed anything unusual about the apps.Three of the 29 identified apps were installed more than 1,000,000 times each, including Pro Camera Beauty, Emoji Camera, and Cartoon Art Photo. One app, Artistic effect Filter, was installed more than half a million times, and yet another seven were installed more than 100,000 times. The remaining apps ranged from as few as 5+ installations up to 50,000+. Google removed more than two dozen camera apps from the Play Store today due to a variety of security issues. Many of these apps involved “beautification,” artistic filters for images, and stickers, but all of them had one thing in common: anyone who downloaded them was left vulnerable to malicious ads, hidden icons, and other security problems. Story TimelineGalaxy S9 Android 9 Pie update here: Verizon, AT&T, SprintAndroid Q Dark Mode could save battery but it won’t matter muchGoogle launches two new Android apps for the hard of hearinglast_img read more


Genesis Essentia first look Electric lust


first_imgIndeed, you could argue that’s the overall argument the Essentia Concept tries to make. Translucent panels in the hood expose the underlying hardware of the pushrod suspension, underscoring that the show car is no mere clay sculpt. Butterfly doors expose a latticework of body structure, which Genesis says could lean heavily on 3D printing techniques. It’s similar to what Hyundai showed in Geneva earlier this month, in the door structure of the Le Fil Rouge concept, but altogether more complex. While this particular concept car may have come as a surprise at the New York show, Genesis has been putting the pieces in place for its tipping point for some time now. Back in 2016, designer Luc Donckerwolke jumped ship from Volkswagen Group – where he’d been Design Director of Audi, Bentley, and Lamborghini – and took up the reins as chief designer at Genesis. There, he works with the famed Peter Schreyer, who currently oversees design at Hyundai, Kia, and Genesis. Together, the pair have some seriously impressive credentials. Schreyer is particularly known for his work on the original Audi TT, a car which – even more than two decades from its first debut – is still among the favorites of many car design experts. Donckerwolke, meanwhile, produced Bentley’s EXP 10 Speed 6 concept coupe in 2015, shortly before leaving the company. It’s tough to find a bad angle on the Essentia. The car is every bit as unfeasibly low as you’d expect from a concept vehicle – which doesn’t have to deal, of course, with the realities of less-than-perfect asphalt – but stops short of outlandish proportions. The hood is long, like classic GT cars, and bears Genesis’ new grille design, a less fussy version of the existing crest that helps further distance the car from its Hyundai cousins. Most striking are the lights. Genesis showed the laser optic technology first on the GV80 Concept SUV, and we’re hoping they appear on production cars sooner rather than later. Slim, flush blades that score the front and rear of the car, they’re a distinctively minimalistic message that Genesis has a handle on cutting-edge engineering. While it would be a stretch to draw too many parallels between either of those cars and the Genesis Essentia, there are some key themes nonetheless. Most significant is probably the effort that has gone into the quality of the detailing. The Essentia Concept’s stunning wheels with their three-dimensional structure, reminiscent of a snowflake under a microscope, are a good example of that. Inside the cabin, there’s a cohesiveness and quality that you don’t always find in concept cars. Indeed, it doesn’t take too much to imagine the Essentia going from auto show to production line. Genesis has been vague about powertrain specifics, focusing more on how the electrification is accommodated than the performance it might deliver. Putting the battery inside the long center console, rather than under the floor, helps keep the car’s stance while also ensuring there’s sufficient space for the power to tackle extended journeys. It’s unlikely, disappointingly, that Genesis will give the Essentia the green-light for production. Like the other stand-out concept of this year’s New York show, the Volkswagen Atlas Tanoak, the automakers’ goal is to upend expectations of what each marque represents. While an all-electric Gran Turismo car may be worlds away from a beefy pickup truck, neither are what you’d expect from Genesis or VW respectively; both, though, achieve a near-visceral impact, in part because they’re each so close in look, feel, and overall construction quality to something you could easily envisage finding in a dealership. For VW, that’s important as the brand reinvents itself out from under the shadow of the “dieselgate” saga. Genesis’ challenge is even more considerable, though. It may have demonstrated that it can make affordable cars, and well-equipped cars, and even capable cars, but now it needs to prove it can deliver cars that invoke lust as much as rationality. Story Timeline2019 Genesis G70 takes a strike at German luxeHyundai’s Genesis is growing up and leaving homecenter_img Genesis Essentia Concept Gallery Genesis is forging its own path, trying to carve out a segment of the luxury market without riding on the coat-tails of Hyundai and Kia, and it needed a figurehead car. That’s just what the South Korean automaker delivered at the New York International Auto Show this week in the shape of the Genesis Essentia Concept. While the new 2019 G70 might be the production car, it’s an all-electric performance Gran Turismo to which the responsibility to make Genesis a respected brand falls. last_img read more


Uber Eats drone delivery service could see Big Macs hit speeds of


first_imgUber is following in the footsteps of Amazon, Google, and others, with the development of its own delivery drone.The flying machine will be used by Uber Eats, a service that lets hungry folks order meals using an app on their smartphone.Uber has recently been conducting drone delivery tests from a McDonald’s in San Diego, California. It’s currently using an Air Robot AR200 octocopter with a custom-built box for holding the food, but later this year it plans to unveil its own delivery drone that could see a Big Mac and fries reach speeds of up to 70 mph.The company told Bloomberg it wants to have a commercial service up and running by this summer. This may be a little ambitious, however, as it’s yet to receive the necessary permission from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA).In a bid to reassure the FAA about the safety of its proposed system, Uber said its meal-carrying drone wouldn’t fly directly to people’s homes because obstacles in and around yards could present serious challenges as it searched for a spot to land. In other words, one wrong move and it could be curtains for the combo meal, as well as the drone. More importantly, the safety of anyone nearby cannot be guaranteed in the event of a crash.Instead, the drone would fly to a predetermined safe-landing zone where a waiting Uber courier would grab the meal and complete the delivery.Time saverUber said that its drone service has the potential to reduce delivery time significantly compared to conventional methods. For example, current deliveries in urban areas take an average of 21 minutes across a distance of 1.5 miles, whereas a drone could do it in just 7 minutes, the company said. Even better, delivery charges for its drone service would not be any different to its regular rates.Uber hopes the launch of a such a service will help set it apart from its meal-delivery competitors, among them DoorDash, GrubHub, and Postmates. The challenges presented by the highly competitive market were brought into sharp focus recently when Amazon Restaurants announced it will be ending its service later this month.Uber executive Eric Allison told Bloomberg: “Our customers want selection, quality, and ­efficiency — all areas that improve with drone delivery.”But the safe operation of autonomous drones is still a huge issue, especially when flying over people and buildings in urban areas. And then there’s the issue of noise pollution, too.Amazon and WingAmazon unveiled its latest Prime Air drone earlier this month, which it hopes to use for delivering goods to the homes of its online shoppers. The FAA recently granted the company a one-year “special airworthiness certificate” allowing it to test the drone under certain conditions.Wing, owned by Google parent Alphabet, is making notable progress with its drone delivery program with the recent launch of a service in a part of Canberra, Australia, and trials in Helsinki, Finland.In April 2018, Wing revealed it had become the first company in the U.S. to receive Air Carrier Certification from the FAA, taking it a step closer to commercial drone deliveries in the U.S. Watch Amazon’s all-new delivery drone zipping through the sky Drone delivery services may prove too noisy for some in Australia Meatballs and pastries offered by Wing’s first European drone delivery service Alphabet’s Wing drones now have FAA approval to deliver packages in the U.S. The Skai is a multipurpose flying car powered by hydrogen fuel cells Editors’ Recommendationslast_img read more


Apple investigates report of an iPhone 6 exploding while in hands of


first_img Editors’ Recommendations Apple is investigating a report of an iPhone 6 that exploded in the hands of an 11-year-old girl in California, partially burning her.“I was sitting down, and I had my phone in my hand and then I saw sparks flying everywhere and I just threw it on a blanket,” Kayla Ramos told 23ABC. “I was right here on the bed and the phone managed to burn through this blanket and make these holes.”Ramos said that she burned herself, but thankfully, it was the blanket and bed that sustained most of the damage. She said that she mostly only uses the smartphone to watch YouTube videos.The iPhone 6, meanwhile, was charred and nearly unrecognizable. The device had partially disassembled, with the display panel separated from the body and burn marks everywhere.Maria Adata, Kayla’s mother, called Apple Support the following day, and was instructed to send photos of the destroyed iPhone 6 and to mail it in. She was then told that Apple is investigating the incident, and that a new iPhone will be shipped to her as a replacement.According to Apple, there are a few factors that may cause an iPhone to overheat and catch fire, as it did in this case. One is using unauthorized products with the device, such as third-party charging cables. Unauthorized repairs and external damage may also cause an explosion. Ramos, however, said that none of these applied to her.The incident, however, has a silver lining for Ramos. “It hasn’t been that bad,” she said. “I mean I have been able to hang out with my sisters and my family more.”The reason behind the iPhone 6 bursting into flames has not yet been identified, and Apple has not yet publicly commented on the incident.The new case of an iPhone explosion follows similar incidents last year, including one in May when an iPhone was caught on surveillance video suddenly exploding and catching fire in a store in Las Vegas. In December, a three-week-old iPhone XS Max reportedly caught fire while in the back pocket of its owners’ pants, emitting green and yellow smoke while burning his skin. How to replace your iPhone’s battery The best iPhone 8 cases and covers Apple reportedly won’t roll out iOS 13 to iPhone 6, iPhone 6 Plus, iPhone SE Renewed Apple iPhones get big price cuts on Amazon for Father’s Day Here’s everything we know about the upcoming Apple iPhone 11Rlast_img read more


Japanese researchers use deep learning AI to get driftwood robots moving


first_imgJapanese researchers use deep learning A.I. to get driftwood robots movingCloseDid you ever make sculptures out of found objects like driftwood? Researchers at the University of Tokyo have taken this same idea and applied it to robots. In doing so, they’ve figured out a way to take everyday natural objects like pieces of wood and get deep reinforcement learning algorithms to figure out how to make them move. Using just a few basic servos, they’ve opened up a whole new way of building robots — and it’s pretty darn awesome.“[In our work, we wanted to] consider the use of found objects in robotics,” the researchers write in a paper describing their work. “Here, these are branches of various shapes. Such objects have been used in art or architecture, but [are] not normally considered as robotic materials. [However,] when the robot is trained towards the goal of efficient locomotion, these parts adopt new meaning: hopping legs, dragging arms, spinning hips, or yet unnamed creative mechanisms of propulsion. Importantly, these learned strategies, and thus the meanings we might assign to such found object parts, are a product of optimization and not known prior to learning.”Azumi Maekawa/University of TokyoDeep reinforcement learning is useful for applications where the A.I. needs to figure out strategies for itself through trial and error. Famously, this approach to artificial intelligence was used to develop DeepMind’s A.I., which learned to play classic Atari games using just the game’s on-screen data and knowledge of its controls. In this latest driftwood example, the robot figures out the optimal way to bring its wooden limbs to virtual life by using reinforcement learning technology to test out different types of locomotion. The result involves movements that don’t necessarily replicate real-life animal movements (to be fair, there aren’t a whole lot of stick-like living creatures to model movement on!), but that are nonetheless efficient.In a masterstroke, the researchers arranged for this training to be done in simulation. Among other things, this allows for a large number of failed movement attempts without having to worry about destroying the physical robot in the process. In order to carry out these simulations accurately, though, the researchers first have to 3D scan in the sticks and enter their respective weights so that the gaits can be calculated correctly.While it’s likely that roboticists will continue to build many robots from the ground up, this is still a great reminder that, with the right software, literally anything can be a robot — even a pile of sticks. Software upgrade could let smartwatches know exactly what our hands are doing Bacteria could help mass-produce wonder material graphene at scale Netflix vs. Hulu vs. Amazon Prime: Battle of the on-demand streaming giants Ignore the scaremongers. 5G won’t interfere with weather satellites. Here’s why Most cities can’t deal with escooters. Charlotte, N.C., wants to show them how Editors’ Recommendationslast_img read more


Move over Spot Anymal is a fourlegged dog robot with all kinds


first_imgAnyboticsWhen you think of canine-inspired robots, your brain probably conjures up images of Boston Dynamics’ celebrated dog robot, Spot. But Boston Dynamics isn’t the only company building four-legged robots. Swiss robotics company Anybotics has also created its own audacious, quadruped robot. The size of a large dog and weighing a little under 80 pounds, Anymal aims to be the gold standard in dog-bots. It’s capable of autonomously walking, running, and climbing, and can even get back on its feet if it falls over.Although Spot will go on sale for the first time later this year, this gleaming robotic beast is already on the market in Europe, the United States, and the Middle East. It’s also being put through its paces in some of the world’s least hospitable terrains. One such location is a storm-swept, offshore power-distribution platform in the North Sea, where Anymal was installed late last year to carry out routine inspections of the facility.“Right now, this is the kind of application that really makes sense for us,” Péter Fankhauser, Anybotics co-founder and chief business development officer, told Digital Trends. “These are jobs where you have a routine task, such as carrying out inspections on a big facility. If there’s a huge amount of infrastructure that needs to be inspected regularly for safety and efficiency, that’s something like a robot can really help with. Especially if it’s potentially hazardous, like mines or offshore oil and gas stations. In those scenarios, it makes sense to keep people out and deploy a robot instead — both from a security and a cost perspective.”And Fankhauser and his co-founders know exactly which robot to deploy. Exploring the world at largeThis is the world that Anymal — which has expanded beyond its original team to employ more than 30 people — now operates in. Without the luxury of being able to go a quarter century as an R&D outfit, like the aforementioned Boston Dynamics, Anymal has been built with industrial applications in mind from the start.“We’ve worked with a lot of industries across the globe and that has taught us a lot of lessons,” Fankhauser said.ANYboticsThese lessons have all contributed to the design of the current-gen Anymal: A lean, mean, autonomous sensing machine that can operate in the dark, in wet conditions due to its waterproofing, harsh conditions thanks to its rugged design, and can move autonomously with the aid of smart sensors. “A lot of the impressive walking robot demos you see are remote control. Our robots are built to be autonomous,” he continued. Anymal can carry a payload weighing up to 10 kilos and operate continuously for three hours, before autonomously returning to a docking bay to recharge.In addition to its routine inspection work in the North Sea, Anymal’s creators have worked with a number of different industries to see where it fits the best. These scenarios have included mining, sewage systems, construction sites, agriculture, forestry, and more. In short, if there’s a setting where you need to regularly inspect for status, track progress, and report on potential problems — without humans having to do it — Anymal may be your best bet. There’s even the possibility of Anybotics getting in on the delivery robot game, much like Starship Technologies.One area you don’t need to worry about it being used? The military. “We receive requests, but we have deliberately decided to keep out of any military applications,” Fankhauser said.So stop worrying about a real-life version of the robotic dog depicted in what be Black Mirror‘s most terrifying episode, Metalhead. Well, at least when it comes to this company! Ten years in the makingThe Anymal project has come a long way since its co-founders first started working together for their robotics degree at ETH Zurich in Switzerland. In the beginning, the focus was on developing electrical actuation, which allowed the robot to sense the ground while walking. This is a key capability for robots to move over uneven terrain. It quickly moved beyond this point, however, as the prototypes were taught to climb, run, and jump, and the team expanded its skills into areas like autonomous mapping and navigation. ANYboticsAt the time, Boston Dynamics’ early stage concepts were driven with combustion engines and hydraulics, but had already showcased promising results for the versatility of legged robots. On the other side of the world, Fankhauser and his fellow students were coming to similar conclusions about the possibilities offered by dog robots.“We often get asked why we use a robot with legs,” Fankhauser said. “People ask why we don’t use a drone or a wheeled or tracked robot. Drones, for example, let you quickly gather different perspectives or viewpoints of a scene. However, one of the big problems is their battery life. A drone flies, on average, for about 20 minutes. They are also often very limited in terms of their payload. You couldn’t safely have a drone flying autonomously through an industrial environment while carrying a bunch of sensors. Tracked vehicles, meanwhile, are great on flat surfaces. The problem is that that confines what you can do. Yes, there are versions that can climb stairs, but they tend to be quite big and heavy. That restricts the ability to go into narrow environments. With legs, we think we can solve a lot of these problems.”“A lot of the impressive walking robot demos you see are remote control. Our robots are built to be autonomous.”After graduating, the team behind Anymal were convinced they had the germ of a seriously interesting idea. Both the size and cost of autonomous robot components were coming down, largely thanks to innovations in both the smartphone and self-driving car fields. Suddenly components such as mobile cameras and laser sensors were accessible in a way they hadn’t been just a few years earlier.The team observed a bigger shift taking place as well. For much of the history of robotics, robots had been confined to certain indoor locations, such as robot arms used on the assembly line in car manufacturing. Many of these robots worked exceptionally well, partly because their creators were able to control every part of the “world” that they perceived. That no longer had to be the case, however.“It made sense to us that the next logical step was to take robots out in the field, to environments that weren’t built with robots in mind,” Fankhauser continued. “That could be urban environments, industrial environments, or natural environments. There are plenty of environments where robots are urgently needed to carry out various applications, but aren’t currently being used. What we’re doing is to build robots that can go anywhere.”center_img Editors’ Recommendations The holy grail of robotics: Inside the quest to build a mechanical human hand Ford’s bipedal delivery robot can walk straight up to your doorstep The rise and reign of Starship, the world’s first robotic delivery provider This plane-pulling robo-dog makes Boston Dynamics’ Spot look scrawny Purdue’s robotic hummingbird is nearly as nimble as the real thinglast_img read more