Mercedes has unveiled a 56-inch MBUX Hyperscreen that will span nearly the entire cabin width of its EQS luxury EV. It’s not just meant to impress — it presents the instrument cluster, infotainment and passenger display in a seamless design that removes unused elements (such as the passenger view on a solo trip). Mercedes is focusing heavily on AI that surfaces and suggests features when you need them. It’ll offer to call a contact if you regularly talk to them on your drive home, will automatically lift the car based on your location and will even remember your preferred massage type based on outside temperatures.
Wi-Fi is about to get a lot better with Wi-Fi 6E, a new upgrade to Wi-Fi that’s essentially like expanding your wireless connection from a two-lane road to an eight-lane highway. That means you can have larger, higher-speed connections and airwaves are less likely to be congested. It’s the biggest upgrade to Wi-Fi in 20 years, and connections should be more reliable because of it. The Wi-Fi Alliance is now starting to certify the first wave of products with support for Wi-Fi 6E. Phones, PCs, and laptops with support should start hitting the market in the first months of 2021 and TVs and VR devices with support are expected to arrive by the middle of the year.
Researchers in Japan have made the first observations of biological magnetoreception – live, unaltered cells responding to a magnetic field in real time. This discovery is a crucial step in understanding how animals from birds to butterflies navigate using Earth’s magnetic field and addressing the question of whether weak electromagnetic fields in our environment might affect human health. Researchers swept a magnetic field over the cells every four seconds. Statistical analysis of the visual data from the experiments revealed that the cell’s fluorescence dimmed by about 3.5% each time the magnetic field swept over the cells.
Researchers found that an individual’s interpretation of the direction of gravity can be altered by how their brain responds to visual information. They found, using virtual reality, that people differ in how much they are influenced by their visual environment. Participants could be divided into two groups: one group who perceived they were standing up vertically (aligned with the visual scene) even though they were actually lying down, and a second group who maintained a more realistic idea of their lying position. The researchers called the first group, ‘Visual Reorientation Illusion vulnerable’ (VRI-vulnerable).
The total market value of all cryptocurrencies rose above $1 trillion for the first time on as Bitcoin surged to a record high. Bitcoin has jumped more than 900% to $38,655, from $3,850 in March, as governments increase speeding to blunt the economic impact of the coronavirus. The cryptocurrency is also gaining traction with more mainstream investors who are increasingly convinced that Bitcoin will be a long-lasting asset, and not a speculative bubble as some analysts and investors fear. Bitcoin accounts for around 69% of the total market cap of the total. It is followed by Ethereum with a 13% share.
Elon Musk just became the richest person in the world, with a net worth of more than $185 billion. Thursday’s increase in Tesla’s share price pushed Musk past Jeff Bezos, who had been the richest person since 2017 and is currently worth about $184 billion. Musk’s wealth surge over the past year marks the fastest rise to the top of the rich list in history. Musk started 2020 worth about $27 billion, and was barely in the top 50 richest people. Tesla’s rocketing share price — which has increased more than ninefold over the past year — along with his generous pay package have added more than $150 billion to his net worth.
Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga said he would consider calling a state of emergency as new coronavirus cases surge to record numbers in Tokyo and neighbouring prefectures. It’s nearing deadline time for Tokyo Olympic organizers and government entities as they try to pull off the Games in the middle of a pandemic. Officials have promised to announce concrete plans early in the new year on how to get 15,000 athletes into Japan; about the safety of the Athletes Village, and hundreds of thousands of fans, media, judges, officials, broadcasters and VIPs.
Newly released documents reveal that BP was behind the toxic oil involved in the Mauritius oil spill last year. Even more troubling are revelations that BP formally blocked the investigation into the fuel that was being used on board the carrier. Ship operator Mitsui OSK Lines knew the oil exceeded engine safety limits and they were concerned during the Wakashio’s final voyage that this fuel could cause serious engine failure. Both BP and MOL were taking a gamble with the lives of the crew and the coastline of surrounding countries by allowing the vessel to sail with this fuel on board.