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22 Jun 07:32

‘War for the Planet of the Apes’ Featurette Highlights Weta’s Breathtaking Visual Effects

by Ethan Anderton

War for the Planet of the Apes Visual Effects Featurette

War for the Planet of the Apes doesn’t hit theaters until the middle of next month, but this past week brought the first batch of screenings for critics, as well as a batch of global screenings for fans who were quick enough to get free passes to the advanced showing of the blockbuster sequel. The movie has some glowing early buzz, and one of the most impressive aspects of the film are the visual effects by Weta Workshop.

A new War for the Planet of the Apes visual effects featurette shows off the absolutely breathtaking work done by the New Zealand company who gives Industrial Light and Magic a run for their money. It shows off behind the scenes footage of Andy Serkis and some of the other ape actors as they appear on set in performance capture gear and puts it alongside the fully rendered, complete sequences from the movie. Check it out after the jump.

First, let’s acknowledge he fact that the apes in this movie look so realistic that it feels like director Matt Reeves simply found a way to teach the simians to act. But outside of how authentic the apes appear in the movie, what’s even more impressive is how performance capture technology has evolved to allow the performances from Andy Serkis and more to emote through the layers of digital effects place over the real actors. Even the eyes are perfectly recreated to capture the lifelike subtlety of human facial expressions.

Outside of the visual effects, it should be noted that War for the Planet of the Apes is an astounding motion picture. It’s one of the best blockbuster movies of the year, and you will be surprised at how emotionally charged and powerful this sequel is. Believe me when I say that you need to see this one on the biggest screen you can as soon as possible.

In War for the Planet of the Apes, the third chapter of the critically acclaimed blockbuster franchise, Caesar and his apes are forced into a deadly conflict with an army of humans led by a ruthless Colonel. After the apes suffer unimaginable losses, Caesar wrestles with his darker instincts and begins his own mythic quest to avenge his kind. As the journey finally brings them face to face, Caesar and the Colonel are pitted against each other in an epic battle that will determine the fate of both their species and the future of the planet.

War For the Planet of the Apes hits theaters on July 14, 2017.

The post ‘War for the Planet of the Apes’ Featurette Highlights Weta’s Breathtaking Visual Effects appeared first on /Film.

22 Jun 07:19

The Defenders assemble in new look at Netflix series

by Derek Lawrence

Daredevil, Jessica Jones, Luke Cage, and Iron Fist have assembled in the latest look at The Defenders.

The four superheroes have joined forces for the badass black and white poster that can be seen above. Netflix’s line of Marvel heroes also can be seen showing their moves in the motion images below.

Following each character having their own Netflix series, Daredevil (Charlie Cox), Jessica Jones (Krysten Ritter), Luke Cage (Mike Colter), and Iron Fist (Finn Jones) are coming together for the highly-anticipated The Defenders. Sigourney Weaver is on board as the big bad, while many familiar faces from the other series will be making appearances.

The Defenders hits Netflix on Aug. 18.


22 Jun 06:02

How to Make $80,000 per Month on the Apple App Store

Imagine only needing to scam 200 people to make $80,000 a month - Apple is letting someone do just that on the App Store. One totally-legit-sounding app dubbed "Clean & Security VPN" has managed to generate $400/month per subscriber, despite it being an obvious scam that asks users to pay $99.99 for a 7-day subscription for a supposed antivirus. Part of the issue seems to lie with Apple's new search ads product: there seems to be no filtering or approval process, so even fake apps are getting great visibility. But there's still the question of how they even pass the review process. ...apps from well-known companies like Dropbox, Evernote, and Microsoft. That was to be expected. But what's this? The #10 Top Grossing Productivity app (as of June 7th, 2017) was an app called "Mobile protection: Clean & Security VPN." Given the terrible title of this app ( inconsistent capitalization, misplaced colon, and grammatically nonsensical "Clean & Security VPN"? ) , I was sure this was a bug in the rankings algorithm. So I check Sensor Tower for an estimate of the app's revenue, which showed...$80,000 per month? That couldn't possibly be right. Now I was really curious. Discussion
20 Jun 22:14

HoloLens Now Being Implemented in Military Gear

by John Keefer

A Ukrainian tech company is adapting the Microsoft HoloLens for military use, implementing the AR system into a series of helmets for tank commanders.

LimpidArmor has developed the Circular Review System headgear with the HoloLens system designed to interact with cameras mounted on the front of tanks, according to a report in Futurism. This offers a 360-degree field of view, including optical thermal readings and can be used to identify friends and foes, designate targets and provide battlefield details hat might otherwise escape undetected in a non-augmented setup.

The helmet is still in development, with LimpidArmor hoping to add more features, including armament control and input from battlefield drones.

The system has already received interest after a showing at the Arms and Security Show in Kiev, Ukraine The Ukrainian military is currently testing the helmets, while the Israeli military has also purchased two systems to test.

20 Jun 11:03

ProtonMail makes its free VPN service available to everyone

by Mariella Moon
ProtonMail, the encrypted email created by CERN and MIT scientists, has released a new product in response to the administration's roll back of Obama-era internet privacy rules. Starting today, you can try out the company's VPN service, which was in...
19 Jun 10:15

We Could Have Had Cellphones Four Decades Earlier

If it weren't for poor estimates and bias for dominant services, cellphone usage could have been ubiquitous decades earlier. From what I can process so far, the primary reasons for the delay appear to be the FCC wanting to give television all the bandwidth, and greedy companies attempting to secure monopolies despite the financial potential of mobile. Apparently, the first cellular call with a mobile handset was made in 1973 by Motorola's then-Vice President. The basic idea of the cellphone was introduced to the public in 1945—not in Popular Mechanics or Science, but in the down-home Saturday Evening Post. Millions of citizens would soon be using "handie-talkies," declared J.K. Jett, the head of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC). Licenses would have to be issued, but that process "won't be difficult." The revolutionary technology, Jett promised in the story, would be formulated within months. But permission to deploy it would not. The government would not allocate spectrum to realize the engineers' vision of "cellular radio" until 1982, and licenses authorizing the service would not be fully distributed for another seven years. That's one heck of a bureaucratic delay. Discussion
17 Jun 18:10

The Mick EPs have 'no idea' how season 2 starts after the mansion burns down

by Nick Maslow

Entertainment Weekly is on the scene at ATX. Go inside the TV festival with all our coverage, available here.

The Mick‘s executive producers have something in common with the series’ titular character: They are admittedly flying by the seat of their pants.

In May’s season 1 finale, Mickey (Kaitlin Olson) and her niece Sabrina (Sofia Black-D’Elia) and nephews Chip (Thomas Barbusca) and Ben (Jack Stanton) watch their gorgeous mansion burn to the ground. But where they’ll go next is anybody’s guess.

“I think we’re excited just to switch things up a bit, but we also don’t want to leave Greenwich and we don’t want to change the entire DNA of the show, but we also want to keep you guys guessing a little bit,” said John Chernin, who co-created the series with his brother Dave, during Friday’s panel about the show at the ATX TV Festival in Austin, Texas.

Then he asked the audience, “Is that okay, or do you want to know a little more? One, I don’t want to give it away. Two, we just started writing, and I have no idea.”

RELATED: Exclusive Portraits From ATX Festival 2017

Chernin revealed the brothers always considered watching the home go down in flames but never thought it would happen in the Fox comedy’s hit first season. “I think it was always in the back of our minds for a later season, and then we were struggling to come up with an ending for the finale,” he explained. “Nick Frenkel, who’s our manager and one of the producers of the show, just came in one day, and he’s like, ‘Just torch it and figure it out later.’ We were like, ‘Yeah, that’s a good idea!’ And now, here we are, and we have no idea what’s next.”

Scott MacArthur, who pulls double duty as both a writer on the series and an actor playing Mickey’s loser boyfriend Jimmy, chimed in with a funny anecdote from a recent Grateful Dead show he attended at the Hollywood Bowl. “I texted the and I said, ‘Wow, there are a lot of fans of The Mick here.’ And John immediately responded, ‘Great, ask them how the f—ing season starts.'”

In addition to taking plot suggestions from fans, the Chernins are also open to giving series star Olson — who previously worked with them on FX’s It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia — an episode to direct. “I’m enough of a control freak to take that on also,” said Olson, laughing. “Yeah, I thought about it last year too. I do not like doing things unless I know I’m going to be very good at it, because I’m really hard on myself.”

Fox renewed the freshman comedy for season 2 in February.

17 Jun 18:06

Orphan Black creator answers season premiere burning questions

by Dalton Ross

SPOILER ALERT: Read on only if you have already watched the season 5 premiere of Orphan Black.

Cosima may be in the woods in some creepy village in the middle of the nowhere, but is she finally out of the woods when it comes to her clone illness? That is just one of the burning questions we had after taking in the Orphan Black season 5 premiere. Also, is Art compromised? Why take Delphine away again? And what the hell was that beast that attacked Sarah?

We went straight to the source for answers and got Orphan Black co-creator Graeme Manson on the line to discuss the first episode of the final season.

ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: What can you tell us about this island village of Revival where Cosima is?GRAEME MANSON: Without giving too much away, we have arrived at the top of the pyramid, so to speak. We have arrived at the seat of power at Neolution. This is where P.T. Westmoreland, a man who’s apparently well over 100 years old, lives and marshals the global forces of Neolution — those setting out to change the course of human evolution. So this little village on the island is called Revival and this is our sort of version of The Island of Doctor Moreau. We do like our classic sci-fi on Orphan Black.

You give Cosima Delphine, and then you take her away again. Man, you guys are so mean to poor Cosima! How could you do that to her?It’s the nature of that relationship and the nature of scheduling busy actors. Suffice it to say, Delphine will return. Delphine has many things in those deep French pockets of hers, and there is still plenty of love lost and mayhem in store for those two characters, for Cosima and Delphine.

Cosima gives herself the treatment. Or, rather, Rachel ends up administering it to her. Does that mean we can finally breathe a sigh of relief when it comes to her health?I mean, it feels like a bigger sigh at the beginning of this season than there ever has been before. Cosima essentially is living with the enemy and striking that Devil’s bargain of continuing to develop the cure to cure her sisters, but she’s working for the dark side now. So obviously, there’s a long struggle ahead for Cosima and well, she’s a pretty good scientist so let’s hope that cure is efficacious this time.

Moving over to another clone, we see Sarah attacked by some sort of maybe half-man, half-beast type of creature in the woods. What can you say about who or what the hell that was?I don’t want to say too much because you know that in the first episode Sarah saw what you saw there. She got attacked out of the shadows of the deep, dark woods on the Island of Doctor Moreau by something. Something is loose on that northern Canadian island and that’s part of the mystery. It’s a part of the scientific mystery. It’s a thread of the real backstory of P.T. Westmoreland, and the history of this island and community. So, it’s a story we’re going to be picking away at for a bunch of episodes.

Let’s talk about Art for a second, because I think you’re doing something very interesting here. He’s got a new partner, this woman we meet called Maddie. She seems to be an agent of Neolution herself and she’s squeezing him to bring the clones in. So, what does this mean for him in terms of how he’s going to play out this situation?Well, everybody has a choice to make this year at the beginning. It’s like Neolution finally holds all the cards. Rachel is back on top and Sarah has no choice but to capitulate and give in, and there’s a couple of people that help her make that choice — one is Mrs. S who has never given up before, and the other is Arthur, who’s in that position now. He’s struggled out from underneath it last year with Duko, but now this person is his new partner and he really doesn’t know which way to look. So, this terrific ally in Art is compromised as well. We’re all a little bit compromised at the top of this season.

So we end with Sarah in the boathouse getting shot by a dart and then Rachel comes in and proclaims it a “new day.” What can you say about what’s coming up?Despite the fact that it’s Rachel’s power play, I think Rachel is showing us some surprising things here. She is the one at the end of the day who administers this cure to Cosima. So, Rachel actually cures one of her sisters. So, despite the heavy hand that she’s laying on all of them, she’s sort of wearing this velvet glove — the velvet crowbar we call it. And that’s how Rachel gets her way. So, Rachel has her hooks in Sarah now, and we’ll see at the top of episode 2 what kind of pressure Rachel’s going to bring to bear to get exactly what she wants.

For more Orphan Black intel, follow Dalton on Twitter @DaltonRoss.

16 Jun 05:37

China bounced an 'unhackable' quantum signal between cities

by Andrew Tarantola
The field of quantum cryptography, which seeks to transmit encrypted information using entangled quantum particles like photons, could help lay the groundwork for tomorrow's quantum networks but it faces a significant physical hurdle: entangled photo...
15 Jun 12:43

Elon Musk brings his Mars plan before the scientific community

by Mallory Locklear
In this month's issue of New Space, Elon Musk outlined his plan to colonize Mars. His article discusses how to bring down the cost of Mars flights as well as some of the specs of necessary equipment.
13 Jun 05:32

Battlestar Galactica Showrunner: "The Cylons Had No Plan"

by Matt Fowler

The cast of Syfy's Battlestar Galactica, along with series executive producer/showrunner Ron Moore, reunited for a Q&A panel at the Austin Television Festival this past weekend, where a question was posed - "What was the Cylons' plan?"

As you recall, BSG episodes opened with:

"The cylons were created by man . They evolved. They rebelled. There are many copies. And they have a plan."

"There was no plan," Moore laughed.

"It all came about when we were doing the main titles and we had to have what's called a 'precap' as opposed to a recap," he said. "So we had a precap before the main title. And David

said we should have a punchy line there at the end...'and they have a plan.' And I was like 'What does that mean?' He said 'It doesn't matter, doesn't matter. It'll be great. The audience will love it.'

Continue reading…

09 Jun 12:28

Watch soccer star Neymar Jr. attempt a rooftop shot for Jimmy Kimmel

by Christopher Rosen

Jimmy Kimmel brought one of the most talented soccer players in the world to the roof of his studio on Wednesday to attempt a shot across Hollywood Boulevard.

Neymar Jr., a gold-medal winner and star player for both Barcelona and the Brazillian national team, appeared on Jimmy Kimmel Live with one goal in mind: to score a goal across the busy street outside Kimmel’s studio.

Asked by Kimmel before attempting the shot if he was able to score, Neymar answered, “I can.” Ever a man of his word, Neymar did score, much to the delight of Kimmel and his studio audience.

Watch the first-ever goal scored across Hollywood Boulevard above.

09 Jun 12:22

5 key moments from James Comey's Congressional testimony

by Christian Holub

Amidst ongoing controversy and unanswered question about President Donald Trump and his administration’s possible ties to the Russian government, former FBI Director James Comey’s appearance on Capitol Hill Thursday to testify before the Senate Intelligence Committee qualified as the biggest news event since Trump’s inauguration. There were long lines at bars all around Washington, D.C., as people waited eagerly to hear what Comey had to say after President Trump fired him May.

Over the course of his almost three-hour testimony, Comey answered questions from both Democratic and Republican Senators about his one-on-one meetings with Trump, how his handling of the Russian investigation compared to his handling of the Hillary Clinton email investigation, and more. Though Comey declined to answer certain questions about the ongoing investigation in a public setting, he still managed to provide some sharp remarks. Here are the highlights.

“Those were lies, plain and simple”

On Wednesday, ahead of his testimony, Comey’s opening statement was provided to both Congress and the American public yesterday. Most of the hearing involved senators quizzing or interrogating various lines from that statement, but Comey took a different tack with his opening remarks. He publicly apologized to his former FBI colleagues for not getting the chance to say goodbye to them “properly” and said that in the wake of his firing, President Trump’s administration “chose to defame me and the FBI by saying it was disarray.” This clearly stung Comey, who called such denigrations of FBI professionalism “lies, plain and simple.”

Comey took notes on meetings in case President Trump lied

Comey had nine one-on-one conversations with President Trump in the months after Trump’s election, whereas he only had two one-on-one conversations with President Barack Obama during his entire eight-year term. Also unlike Obama, Comey felt compelled to take notes on all of his meetings with President Trump, which are recounted in the opening statement he provided Wednesday. As he explained to Senator Mark Warner during the hearing, Comey took notes because “I was honestly concerned that he might lie about the nature of our meeting, so I thought it really important to document.”

Why didn’t he tell Trump “no”?

After a group meeting on Feb. 14, President Trump kept Comey behind and asked him, one-on-one, to let go of an investigation into former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn. According to Comey’s account of the event, he refused to do so, saying only that he agreed with the president that Flynn was “a good guy.” One question Comey was repeatedly asked was why he didn’t speak up more forcefully about the president’s inappropriate conduct in this instance. Why not tell the president it was out of line to try an influence an ongoing investigation in such a way? Comey chalked it up to a mix of shock and intimidation.

“I was so stunned by the conversation that I just took it in,” Comey told Sen. Diane Feinstein (D-Calif.). “I was playing in my mind, what should my response be? That’s why I very carefully chose my words. So I said, ‘I agree he’s good guy’ as a way of saying, ‘I’m not agreeing with what you just asked me to do.’ Maybe other people would be stronger in that instance, but it’s how I conducted myself. Maybe if I did it again I’d do it better.”

“Lordy, I hope there are tapes”

A few days after firing Comey, President Trump tweeted this ominous-sounding message: “James Comey better hope that there are no ‘tapes’ of our conversations before he starts leaking to the press!” Trump’s tweet led to speculation that the president might be secretly taping Oval Office conversations, but on Thursday Comey made it clear that he’s not scared of anything that might be on tape. He first told Sen. Feinstein, “Lordy, I hope there are tapes”; later reiterated to Sen. Joe Manchin (D-Va.) that the president can go ahead and “release all the tapes, I’m good with it.”

“Who will rid me of this meddlesome priest?”

At one point, Comey ended up having an interesting exchange with Sen. Angus King (I-ME). Several senators were curious about Comey’s account the Oval Office meeting where he and the president discussed Michael Flynn. Did President Trump’s wording (“I hope you can let this go”) really translate to an order? By Comey’s reckoning, the context and the power of the person speaking means the passive wording did carry an order behind it. To explain, Comey ended up making a historical reference that Sen. King also understood.

“It rings as my ears kind of like, ‘who will rid me of this meddlesome priest?’” Comey said.

“I was just going to quote that, King said. “In 1170, Henry II says, ‘who will rid me of this meddlesome priest?’ And the next day the priest Thomas Becket was killed. It’s exactly the same situation, we’re thinking along the same lines.”

In other words, when a head of state makes his wishes clear, no matter how it’s exactly phrased, the expectation is those desires will be acted upon.

09 Jun 08:04

NASA's Mars 2020 concept is perfect for Space Batman

by Mariella Moon

1:1 with the vehicles from Mass Effect games

NASA has shown off a futuristic-looking concept of the Mars 2020 rover with a shiny black body and intimidating wheels at the Kennedy Space Center. If you're thinking that it looks like it popped right out of a superhero movie or a shiny video game t...
08 Jun 06:28

Colbert says James Comey treated Trump like the T. rex in Jurassic Park

by Oliver Gettell

With former FBI Director James Comey poised to testify before the Senate Intelligence Committee about his interactions with President Trump, Stephen Colbert went digging for material in Comey’s prepared remarks — and naturally, he found a few choice nuggets.

During his Late Show monologue Wednesday, Colbert noted that there’s “a lot of weird stuff” in the document and seemed especially tickled by Comey’s account of Trump asking for a pledge of loyalty.

“I didn’t move, speak, or change my facial expression in any way during the awkward silence that followed,” Comey recalled. “We simply looked at each other in silence.”

“He didn’t move a muscle!” Colbert marveled. “Basically, Comey treated Trump like the T. rex in Jurassic Park.

Launching into a dinosaur impression, Colbert added, “It makes sense — they both have the same size hands.”

Watch the video above for more. The Late Show airs weeknights at 11:35 p.m. ET on CBS.

08 Jun 06:26

Pennywise Actor Made Child Actors Cry on the Set of It

by Alex Gilyadov

The It reboot's new Pennywise, Bill Skarsgard did a great job of traumatizing child actors on the set of It.

Speaking with his brother, Alexander for Interview Magazine, Skarsgard revealed he "wasn't very friendly or goofy" during filming and tried his best to make Pennywise as creepy and weird as possible when he was in full makeup.

During the filming of one particular scene, Skarsgard made several child extras cry simply by looking at them. While some "were really intrigued" by Skarsgard's makeup and clown outfit, others were shaking. "I am completely in character," said Skarsgard. "So some of these kids got terrified and started to cry in the middle of the take, and then I realized, 'Holy s**t. What am I doing? What is this? This is horrible.'"

Continue reading…

08 Jun 06:08

Wonder Woman Easter Eggs, References and Trivia

by Jesse Schedeen

The DC Extended Universe just became a bigger and more interesting place thanks to the release of Wonder Woman. Now we know the story of how Diana of Themyscira first ventured into man's world and helped save humankind from annihilation in the waning days of World War I.

Even though Wonder Woman takes place about 100 years before the events of Batman v Superman and the rest of the DCEU, the film features a number of interesting cameos and connections to the comics for eagle-eyed fans.

But don't worry if you didn't catch everything. We've put together a slideshow that breaks down all the big cameos and Easter eggs in the movie.

While the film was packed to the gills with cool comic book homages, it did leave us scratching our heads a few times. Check out our list of 5 WTF questions we're asking after having seen the movie.

Continue reading…

06 Jun 10:55

13 Essential Facts about Dark Universe from Its Creator

by Daniel Krupa

Dark Universe is almost here. If you didn't know, that's the snazzy new name for Universal’s new cinematic universe drawing together its classic monsters.

The Mummy is first up, written and directed by Alex Kurtzman, who also serves as one of the key architects of this new universe of gods and monsters.

We spoke to him at length about the overarching project and the rules governing its creation.

It's clear from our conversations that Kurtzman is a lifelong and passionate fan of Universal’s classic monsters, and while these new movies will be indebted to a wider horror tradition, he sees those original movies almost as a genre in their own right.

Continue reading…

06 Jun 10:53

SpaceX's re-launched Dragon capsule arrives at the ISS

by Timothy J. Seppala
This weekend's big SpaceX news has nearly reached its logical conclusion point: the reused Dragon cargo capsule has been successfully captured by the International Space Station. While that sounds an awful lot like the opening scene of a certain spac...
05 Jun 07:47

Roomba creator wants to do for gardens what he did for your floors

by Jon Fingas
Let's be honest: while planting your garden can be fun, weeding it usually isn't. Not unless you enjoy crouching down for long stretches, anyway. You might not have to endure the drudgery for too much longer, though. Roomba co-creator Joe Jones an...
04 Jun 07:00

SpaceX re-launches a Dragon capsule for the first time

by Jon Fingas
SpaceX is no longer limited to reusing rockets -- it's reusing capsules, too. The private spaceflight outfit has launched a refurbished Dragon cargo capsule (namely, one last used in September 2014) as part of a resupply mission to the International...
03 Jun 19:47

Why the World Needs a Wonder Woman

by Mario-Francisco Robles

In the worst of times, just as in the best of times, we look to heroes to guide us. Sometimes they stand before us a symbol of hope, or simply a reminder that things aren't as bad as we perceive them to be. Other times, they have the ability to pull us out of the depths of despair with just a kind word of encouragement. A hero can even take you back to a simpler, more optimistic time; a time devoid of shades of grey and moral complexity. A time when good could decisively triumph over evil. Today, more than ever, we need a hero that can raise our spirits and remind us that love and compassion are all humanity needs in order to find peace. That hero is Wonder Woman.

Something to consider when thinking of many comics heroes is how they were created to empower the most vulnerable and powerless among us: children. Each of us who gravitated towards superheroes as a child did so, whether we realized it or not, because they had the power to make things better. They didn't need permission, and they weren't at the mercy of anyone else. They were powerful, fearless, and courageous in the face of unspeakable evil.

Continue reading…

03 Jun 07:07

Scientists now know how your brain differentiates faces

by Mallory Locklear
Researchers at Caltech have taken a huge step in figuring out how the brain processes faces. In a study published this week in Cell, the team found that the brain only needs around 200 neurons to differentiate faces from each other.
02 Jun 08:35

Dolphins Have Figured out How to Use Tablets

Dolphins are well known for being smarter than the average bear (and most other animals), but I never imagined I'd see them mucking around with a giant Surface or iPad. College researchers and the National Aquarium in Baltimore created a giant, eight-foot touchscreen with "dolphin-friendly" apps, and the aquatic animals evidently had no trouble using it. The author notes that while Apple may have found new customers to buy its underperforming tablets, dolphins are far too intelligent to buy gear from the fruit company. Biophysicist Marcelo Magnasco says that it was an elegant solution that was absolutely safe for the dolphins, but it has been incredibly rewarding to work with these amazing creatures and see their reactions to our system. "It has always been hard to keep up with dolphins, they are so smart; a fully interactive and programmable system will help us follow them in any direction they take us." Rockefeller University professor Diana Reiss hoped this technologically-sophisticated touchscreen "will be enriching for the dolphins and also enrich our science by opening a window into the dolphin mind." Discussion
02 Jun 07:39

Elon Musk leaves Trump’s council after US exits Paris climate pact

by Roberto Baldwin
Today, president Donald Trump announced that the United States would be withdrawing from the Paris Accord. As promised, Tesla CEO Elon Musk then announced that he would no longer be part of presidential councils based on Trump's decision.
01 Jun 05:46

The world’s largest aircraft prepares for testing

by Rob LeFebvre
We last heard about the Stratolaunch in August 2015, when Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen's company Stratolaunch Systems announced plans for test flights with the massive airplane meant to help launch satellite-bearing rockets more efficiently. Those...
01 Jun 05:44

Google's virtual museum tours tell you more about the art

by David Lumb
Google has built tools to explore art since 2011, when it began uploading gigapixel images of classic pieces. The tech titan introduced museum floor plans and walking tour info to Google Maps as well as its Art and Culture app, released last July, to...
30 May 08:12

NVIDIA 'Max-Q' gaming laptops: ultrabooks with GTX 1080 power

by Richard Lawler
Based on NVIDIA's 2017 Computex announcements, PC gamers won't have to choose between bulky gaming laptops and desktop-level processing power for much longer. A new design called "Max-Q" is arriving in new laptops that it claims are both 3x thinner a...
29 May 06:15

Microsoft’s transition to Git/GVFS for Windows development is almost complete

by Pradeep

Earlier this year, Microsoft announced that it is working on a solution that allows Git client to scale to really huge repos. The new solution was called GVFS (Git Virtual File System). GVFS virtualizes the file system beneath your repo and makes it appear as though all the files in your repo are present, but in reality only downloads a file the first time it is opened. It also actively manages how much of the repo Git has to consider in operations like checkout and status, since any file that has not been hydrated can be safely ignored.

Microsoft today provided an update on the progress they have made with GVFS. GVFS team has almost completed the rollout of Git/GVFS to the Windows team at Microsoft. This is a huge milestone and a validation to the project. If it works for Windows codebase, then it should work for almost all other large codebase projects. Microsoft also shared some numbers related to Windows team and its codebase. The Windows team is about 4,000 engineers and the engineering system produces 1,760 daily “lab builds” across 440 branches. Windows code base is approximately 3.5M files with a size of about 300GB.

Microsoft has made some significant performance improvements and introduced Git proxies. Also, GVFS is an open source project and Microsoft has started making regular updates to the published code base. Starting today, Microsoft is opening GVFS for external contributions. Microsoft also worked with the community to begin to build support into popular tools – like SourceTree, Tower, Visual Studio, etc.

GVFS is free to use. Just download it from GitHub, create a Visual Studio Team Services account with a Git repo in it and you can start using the setup.

29 May 06:13

Explore your virtual home with VeriCon’s new HoloLens app

by Greg Jordan

Dutch company VeriCon, a structural engineering firm, has just created a new HoloLens app that would allow its customers to view the inside and outside of their homes in Virtual Reality. Above, you can check out a VeriCorn customer visualizing her new home after seeing 2D drawings of her new home.

With this, you would be able to walk through the home, check out the views from specific windows, check out all of the floor space, furniture locations, and much more.

In addition to this, VeriCon is working on using HoloLens with structural engineers, architects, and other project managers to better visualize building structure layouts to tackle any problems with electrical, plumbing, or other building system issues before they arise.

Sander Ekstijn, a senior consultant at VeriCon said about the app:

This woman was the buyer of the house and had never before heard or seen this technology. She had looked at many 2D drawings of her house, but when it came to live at the exact location in 3D with the HoloLens, she was thrilled checking out every room for size and views outside. Because the architect already provided some furniture, it really feels like you are there. She almost wanted to offer us coffee from the virtual kitchen. Upstairs she was afraid to walk ‘through’ the bed and walked around it.

We have special voice commands implemented to move up/down a floor. Since we had enough space outside, we did not have to move the house around us, but we also have move forward/backward, so you can do this in a small space, too.

But indeed, a very nice experience to show the power of 3D mixed reality. Looking from the inside to the garden and the other way around. Also, she was pointing at a wall, so we all had to look at the surface tablet to get that. She was so immersed in the experience that she had no idea we could not see ‘that’ wall.