Antbo the DIY ant-bot is being crowdfunded on IndieGoGo
Believe it or not, we like certain insects. Some spiders are okay. Others tend to raid the fridge and drink all the beer. We’re not big on roaches but ants… ants, we like. So this crowdfunded ant-bot, called Antbo, is right up our street of choice. Antbo is a built-it-yourself robot, which takes about an hour to put together and the creators claim that anyone can do it. They’ve obviously never seen us try and assemble a store-bought table before. They’re looking for $50,000 and have raised about $11,500 so far. There are still 30 days to go, so the target is wholly doable. If you’d like your own Antbo, it’ll set you back $69 (around R1,000). All of the cheaper early-bird options have sold out already.
There’s a track-day at the end of May and no drivers are invited
Thunderhill Raceway (what an awesome name) in California is the place where the first autonomous track-day will be taking place at the end of May 2016. It makes sense, we’ve already got a driverless racing series starting up so Joshua Schachter’s driverless car event was sort of inevitable. It probably won’t be wholly autonomous, as the 28-29 May event has been set up to test everything from driverless cars to gearboxes, sensors, cameras, software or otherwise-connected cars. We’d quite like to see footage of the event. While the likes of Audi have sent driverless cars around the track at Thunderhill, Schachter isn’t expecting many of next month’s attendees to replicate the feat. But that just means that next time will be more effective (and better attended).
Source: via Ars Technica
Facebook’s changing the News Feed again – less clickbait could be on the menu
Does it come as a surprise that Stuff‘s website doesn’t really like clickbait? You will not believe how shocking we find this list of 10 things that totally should happen to some celebrity who has no idea they’re being used just to drive shoddy advertising… (seriously, we could go on for hours with this sentence). Facebook might be able to help shut down the clickbait-y articles clogging up your social media feed, at least, as they’re rolling out new algorithms which will be “…adding another factor to News Feed ranking so that we will now predict how long you spend looking at an article in the Facebook mobile browser or an Instant Article after you have clicked through from News Feed.” Translation: If it’s clickbait and you bail right away, articles like that will be downranked in future. We’re… okay with that.
Help out astronauts, design a deep space Mars habitat for NASA
We’ve sent a few robots to Mars (some of them were not happy about it) and soon we’re going to be sending people. But we can’t just send a capsule over there and expect them to live inside a tin can. There’s a name for people like that: We call them caravaners. So NASA has put out a call for design ideas for deep-space habitats that astronauts might one day live inside on the surface of Mars (but it there’s no Moon beta test, we’re going to be very upset), part of their NextSTEP-2 initiative. There’s a catch, sadly. You’ll need to be a US resident and you’re going to be going up against the likes of Boeing, Lockheed Martin and others so you’d better be damn sure of yourself if you want a slice of that $65 million in funding.