“Lolita” - a 14 Year-Old Pedophile Catcher
Lolita is a 14-year-old girl crime fighter; who is trained to catch pedophiles in online chat rooms.
Okay before you call the EU to question their inappropriate behavior, you should know that “Lolita” isn’t actually a person, she’s an online robot.
Lolita, a Negobot, uses artificial intelligence, powered by software that can mimic language used by teenagers and young adults. Unlike past chat robots that were predictable and easily detectable, Lolita seems more human. But that’s just the beginning; Once Lolita identifies a particular personality in a chat, she switches from a neutral tone to one of seven distinct settings depending on the intensity of the conversation. In addition to Lolita’s personality adaption, she can also remember facts discussed and bring them back up for discussion, even having the ability to make decisions making the experience all the more real. Lolita even sounds like a kid; she makes spelling mistakes, uses slang and even acts disappointed if she feels the possible predator isn’t interested in her.
The media has popularized the ability of criminals to use the internet and electronic devices to cause havoc and hurt others. But what about the good guys, who are adapting and familiarizing themselves with cyber crime? There’s no doubt Lolita will improve internet safety, she has already been tested on Google chat and has the ability to be translated into other languages.
Don’t “K” Me!
Text messaging is an art, from typing just the right amount, to making your thoughts clear and who can forget having to scan for hidden emotions. The infamous “k” gets every avid texter at least once.
“I’m going into class now, I will text you when I’m done to meet up later”
“Don’t K me…”
How do I take a response like that? I text my friend almost every day, with how busy life has been, I was surprised and quite irritated when I was “yelled at” via text message. Is texting not for those of us who want to send simplified messages?
I hate, yes hate when people get mad for what obviously is a simple text. If what you’re saying is so important that my “k” of a response is so cruel just ask me “if something’s wrong,” or even better call me.
Besides the innocent, misunderstood “k” there’s also the “I’m ignoring you k:”
“Gibby the Hamster passed awayL”
“I made dean’s list!”
“I just fought of five ninjas with my bare hands”
Has texting gotten too serious? Doesn’t anybody else feel somewhat annoyed with how many messages we have to send out daily that could be easily settled via phone or email? Is anybody else tired of having to sort between the flirty smiley faces and the friendly ones, or how about the emoji craze and even the people who get mad because they wake up in the middle of the night if someone texts them.
For as much as I hate the continuous bombarding of text messaging in my life, I won’t stop, I simply can’t…and I hate it
Heml.is- The Encrypted Messaging App
Co-founder of Pirate Bay, Peter Sunde, has announced that he is creating a texting app that uses encrypted messaging to ensure privacy. Sunde’s app aims to protect users privacy with messages being “so” encrypted that not even the creators will be able to read texts sent. The app is called Hemlis -literally meaning secret in Swedish- the app will have the same format as typical smartphone texting interface, the only difference being that all messages sent from beginning to end will be encrypted.
Going along with Pirate Bay’s app policy, Hemlis will not include advertisements nor sell data to corporations or the government. Therefore the company needs to compile a sum of $100,000 to develop an app that works for both Android and iOS devices. The app is planned to be free with picture messages having a small added cost. Private Bay told enthusiasts this week that if future users donate $5 they will save money on picture messaging when the app is unveiled.
In light of the many privacy infringements that have taken place recently, Hemlis is expected to receive large amounts of business, most influentially from young people who are using text messaging more than their actual cell phones. Private Bay’s step is no surprise, as people are constantly looking for ways of keeping their online and phone usage private.
Flexible, Bendible, Incredible- Samsung’s Innovative Phone Concepts
Samsung unveiled a bendable and flexible smartphone screen at CES this year, exciting many tech analysts who see not only a new emergence of mini and over sized smart phones but also flexible screens and materials that could be folded in your pocket or contour to the shape of your hand.
The future of this phone concept doesn’t seem to be that far away either, Samsung’s announcement that they are releasing a bendable screen phone by fourth quarter this year has sparked the imaginations of gadgeteers everywhere. Many designers see Samsung’s step as just the beginning of a more popular trend, dreaming up concepts for smartphones that can be unfolded into a tablet to stretchable screens.
Whatever the future the holds, a bendable screen has many immediate implications, including a less breakable screen due to its increased malleability and a phone that’s less heavy. Once Samsung takes their concept into fruition the only question I’ll be asking is, where can I sign up to get one?
Via Web Urbanist
Hell Is Other People- The Anti-Social Media App
Ever feel like you just can’t get away from your friends, almost to the point where you swear you’re being followed by “that creepy girl that lent you a quarter at the grocery store last week?”
The Hell Is Other People app is the first of its kind, aimed at customers that want to use technology to be anti-social. The app tracks your Foursquare friends’ recent check-ins, puts them on a Google Map and helps guide you through town avoiding any and all of your friends.
While developers do claim that the app is “partially satirical,” the wide acceptance and popularity of the app could just prove they started a big trend. For many introverts who make up a little less than half the population, social media has started to seem unbearable, as if privacy could be violated at any given moment. “Anti-Social Media” could be the start of something big, that will inspire app makers to re-strategize to attract people who would rather hang with cats or their Netflix accounts than real people.
Shazam to Expand into Actual Television
Mexican billionaire Carlos Slim has announced that he will fund $40-million to the music identification service Shazam.
Shazam, an app for smart phones that recognizes songs and TV commercials in seconds is growing rapidly popular with sales at $300-million this past year. Slim, the world’s wealthiest man and president of America Movil, the largest telecommunications company in the Americas, will be helping Shazam’s growing customer base, receiving more than 10-million new users a month.
Shazam remains purposely not profitable to increase their customer base and continue expanding and improving their services. While music is Shazam’s primary service, commercials are not far behind. With the investment from Slim, executive chairman of Shazam said in an interview that “within 18 months we expect TV will significantly outperform the music side (of the business).” Many of Shazam’s 350+ million users are now wondering what the expansion into television will look like?
Smartphones Will Soon Have Mini Me’s
Today, buying a smartphone is not just about capabilities and features, but also its size and price. Every week, we see an ad for a new and improved smart phone with a bigger screen and more often than not, a bigger price tag. After playing on my friend’s Samsung Galaxy for no more than 15-minutes, the only thing I could think about was “how in the heck do you talk on this?” Many smartphones seem more like mini tablets rather than cell phones and people, especially outside the U.S and W. Europe can’t handle the size or cost of such a big and bulky device.
In an attempt to increase sales in countries like China, where smartphone usage is growing rapidly- yet the iPhone isn’t even one of the top five phones in the country- American companies are aiming to compete with China based businesses like Lenovo and ZTE by making smaller phones.
The concept is simple, smaller phones equal less money, while still providing the same features of a normal smartphone. Many companies are speculated to be drawing out if not already about to unveil “mini smartphones” in order to compete with every price point and preference, including those with small hands and pockets.
Free App Party Favors for the Apple App Store’s 5th Birthday
Celebrating the Apple App Store’s fifth birthday this Wednesday, a number of iOS apps are free for a limited time. While Apple is not in direct control of developers’ app pricing, many popular apps are dropping their price to zero in what seems to be a “party favor” for the store’s “big” anniversary.
Since prices are and will continue to be slashed for the next week, get on your Apple devices and get shopping! Although I guess it’s not really shopping since it’s free so just fill up your cart like there’s no tomorrow.
Space Tourism to Take-Off as Early as 2015
If earth travel has just gotten too boring for your poor little self, maybe it’s time to look up towards space? Excalibur Almaz is announcing that passenger flights to the moon will soon be dreams come true. The company has purchased two space stations as well as four Russian space ships, hoping to take paying customers to outer space by 2015.
While the company seems quite ambitious, space tourism seems to be right around the corner with other businesses such as Virgin Galactic and Soyuz hoping to launch space ships soon and even PayPal’s starting a “Galactics initiative,” a space bank for paying customers outside Earth’s orbit.
Hooked on Google
My last ten “Googles” were:
1. Spanish Practice Tests Online
2. Strong vs. Weak Personality types
3. Where are the oldest trees in the world located?
4. What makes potatoes Unhealthy?
5. How do clouds affect solar panels?
6. Old trucks
7. Weather in Chile
8. Biggest Cities in Africa
9. Are movies getting longer?
10. Are most blue flowers dyed?
For most of us, our Google history is quite personal, reflecting how, what and who we think about every day. Google is about finding answers, looking for things and getting some help, more than anything in my opinion it represents how connected our lives are with the internet. Look at my past searches and no patterns emerge, that’s because Google answers every random question I have, from school projects to looking for a good restaurant, Google as a search engine is my best shot for finding anything. Google has made our lives easier but not dumber, if anything we learn more with every search. But I worry about Google dependency.
Google is all about answering our questions, but when was the last time we couldn’t find a question answered on Google? Probably almost never and how can this be? Such a complex and interesting world can’t be figured out by a search engine. Google, if not used in moderation can lead us down a path of closed mindedness one in which we aren’t as curious, don’t see grey area and believe everything we think of has already been thought and answered. If used incorrectly Google could slow progress not enhance it.
Via Apple Store
Graphing Calculator App
Remember when you purchased a $120+ graphing and scientific calculator? Well I sure don’t, I have a Graphing Calculator app by Appcylon.
The Graphing Calculator app, available for Apple and Android products, enables users all the functions of a graphing and scientific calculator for only $1.99. Take that Texas Instruments!
The app’s simple interface not only is an equivalent to a standard graphing calculator but it also engages you with touch screen graphing, zoom in and out and a high resolution format. Furthermore the Graphing Calculator app is accommodating, including a custom keyboard, multiple work windows for different problems and the ability to display your calculator on a television, projector or computer.
If you want a thicker wallet and maybe actually learn better, get the app. The Graphing Calculator is definitely a best buy and I highly recommend it to anyone taking math in the fall for homework and even in-class.
Who You Calling a Phone? Food for Thought
Okay let’s be honest, how important is your cell phone? No, not your apps, music and pictures, I mean your phone. If your answer is at all similar to mine, it’s obvious your “phone” is just one part of your cellular device.
10 years ago, cell phones were just that, portable telephones, sometimes you might get a game or two but really nothing too exciting. As years went on however, we unveiled the camera phone, then the video and camera phone, a year later; phones started having keyboards so people could text faster. Then in an instant, it just happened, the phone became a computer and cell phone usage sky rocketed, or did it?
The smart phone is indeed “smart,” but the concept of the telephone really hasn’t changed. For the amount we text, email or use apps, why couldn’t we call our cell phone a texter or pocket computer? People aren’t talking any more than they used to but they sure use their phones more, quite a contradiction is you ask me.
I doubt the title of cell phone will ever take on a different name but I think it should.
New Battery Charger Invention that take 30 seconds to charge your phone
18-year-old Eesha Khare created a small device that can recharge cell phone batteries in as little as 30 seconds, winning one of the two Young Scientist Awards from the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair. Khare’s invention awarded her $50,000 and surely is helping to fund some of her biggest dreams including her attendance at Harvard next year.
The black, rectangular device is just a little bit larger than an inch long, yet can charge a phone battery in under 30 seconds. Khare says she “developed a new supercapacitor, which is basically an energy storage device which can hold a lot of energy in a small amount of volume.”
People everywhere are now wondering when they will be able to get their hands on this technology, or if she will even trademark her idea. Khare’s invention is bound to be a big hit; many tech analysts are predicting this will be one of the biggest and best moves in the battery charging industry.
The Energy Harnessing Soccer Ball
Easily the most popular game in Africa, soccer is seen as a unifying force for the continent’s diverse groups of people and is now also a source of renewable energy. Uncharted Play a company based in New York City, has created a soccer ball that can generate electricity, enabling users of the ball functions such as powering a lamp or charging a phone.
The company’s aim is to provide cheap to free energy in the developing world. In his visit to Africa this week, president Obama even presented the ball to the people of Tanzania, highlighting the ball’s energy ability.
The ball never needs inflation and is generated by stored kinetic energy that comes from playing with the ball. According to Uncharted Play, 30 minutes of kicking the ball can keep an LED light on for three hours.
The ball, becoming even more wildly popular after Obama’s visit, is predicted to become a big hit all over the world, from Pakistan to Mexico and Brazil to Senegal. Who can’t like this idea? Uncharted Play not only gives impoverished children and families free energy but also encourages physical activity.
It would be great to see the company expand into other forms of sports including basketball, football and even tennis, since this innovative ball is surely a success.
Radio Shack Unveils New Store Concept
Been to RadioShack lately? Yeah… That’s what I thought.
If you’re anything like me, RadioShack has become a past memory, the ugly store and high prices seem all too pointless in the days of online shopping. The company’s sales have been plummeting and it is obvious if RadioShack hopes not to be another Circuit City that there needs to be serious change.
RadioShack Corp has opened its first new store, highlighting its new logo and more contemporary design. The change comes in light of serious competition from stores such as Best Buy and the Apple Store who have received more foot traffic in recent years.
New stores are broken up by technology (phones, speakers etc.) as well as by brand category. In addition to the new display, RadioShack will allow customers to test products of different brands, size etc, even providing a Bluetooth feature to provide extra information on products.
Concept stores are set to unveil in New York, New Jersey and Texas. In the coming years, RadioShack plans to implement the new design in all their 4,300 stores in hopes of improving business which suffered serious losses, $63 million in last year’s fourth quarter alone.
In a world that loves to online shop for cheaper prices but also convenience, it takes a lot for business’ to bring customers to their stores. Customers are willing to pay for overpriced tech products if the store’s environment makes you feel good and RadioShack is no exception. The store’s interior is boring and bland, a change is bound to bring in business to a company who desperately needs it.