Light Start - The No-Cellphone Edition - Stuff

Light Start – The No-Cellphone Edition

DJI announces the Matrice 200-series camera-centric drones

Long story short, you’re not going to buy this drone. You might want to but unless your business is cinematography or you routinely pay pilots to do stuff for you, DJI’s newly-announced Matrice 200 drone series is probably out of reach. It’s still sexy though, with the new series boasting enough space for three different cameras (one for navigation, one for high-res filming, and also a thermal camera — for industrial reasons). The M200 series has also been weatherproofed, being rated for work in snow and rain. DJI have packed in a whole bunch of extra sensors, allowing more precision while flying. It’s capable of 35 minutes of flight-per-charge  but batteries can be hot-swapped, allowing flyers to keep it in action as long as they have batteries in store. Pricing hasn’t been announced but expect it to cost an arm and a leg when it launches in Q2 2017.

Source: The Verge

Why yes, researchers at MIT have been working on AI that plays Smash Bros. Really, really well

Artificial intelligence can do a lot of things well. Including, now, playing Super Smash Bros. Melee, a game that has world-class human players kicking large amounts of butt in tournaments. Technically Melee already has AI players built in but they’re not terribly good compared to humans. The AI developed by MIT’s Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory, though… that’s another story. The researchers have taught the neural network AI to play the game from scratch, resulting in a sometimes unpredictable opponent. According to lead researcher Vlad Firoiu “It is sometimes very conservative, being unwilling to attack until it sees there’s a opening. Other times it goes for risky off-stage acrobatics that it turns into quick kills.” How good is the AI? It has been able to compete with and sometimes win against some of the top 100 Melee players in the world — no small feat. We wonder how this branch of AI will eventually enslave humans.

Source: TechCrunch

Samsung’s Galaxy S8 will be unveiled in New York on 29 March

Okay, okay, so this has a little something to do with a cellphone but we can’t see it yet and we’re also talking about the launch event, so we’re counting this as a no-cellphone item. Ahem… moving on. Samsung is going to be taking the wraps off the Galaxy S8 (and probably the Galaxy S8+) at a New York event next month. The date is 29 March 2017 and the event is Samsung’s Unpacked. How many of those rumours were on the nose? We’ll know in a few weeks, once all the MWC hype has died down. Yes, we’ll be keeping an eye on events as they happen.

Source: via Engadget

Sony’s PlayStation VR is having a good time in the market

So virtual reality may or may not be the future. A high cash point of entry and needing a large PC to run the thing puts it out of reach for the average user (read: anyone who doesn’t know how to install their own components and has enough spare cash for frequent upgrades) but Sony’s PlayStation VR circumvents a lot of those problems nicely. It’s pricey but it works out of the box if you have a PS4 and the PlayStation Eye camera and, according to The New York Times, these benefits have made it possible for Sony to sell more than 915,000 units since its October 2016 launch. That’s pretty close to Sony’s sales target — they were hoping to be over the 1 million unit mark by now. Still, we’re sure that they’re pleased with the headset’s sales performance so far.

Source: via Polygon

Stuff South Africa's online editor and print assistant editor, Brett Venter has churned out more words on more titles than most journalists will in a career. He's kind of shy.

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