As of the end of 2015, data from market research company Net Applications showed that Google Chrome browser is used on 32.33% of desktop and laptop computers globally. Following the company’s next major update, however, that figure could grow substantially. According to a new post on Google+ from Ilya Grigorik, a web performance engineer at Google, the company is nearly ready to roll out a new version of its Chrome web browser that will include the biggest speed boost Chrome has ever received in a single update. The next version of Google’s Chrome web browser will include a new compression algorithm called “Brotli,” which will replace the current compression algorithm in Google’s popular browser. Grigorik says Brotli will allow Chrome to compress data by up to 26% more than Chrome can in its current build, which represents a huge jump. More compression means faster page loads, which results in a significantly faster browsing experience for end users. No exact date has been shared for when the new faster version of Chrome will be released to the public.
Mumbai : Hike Messenger has announced that it crossed over 100 million registered users and 40 billion messages monthly. The platform had reached 30 billion message monthly early in December after having reached the 20 billion monthly message mark in August last year. The company mentions that 90% of its user base is from India and under the age of 30. As of now, Hike claims that users spend 120 minutes per week using the app, apart from viewing 11.2 stories per user per day. The company’s competitor WhatsApp claimed to have hit 900 monthly active users worldwide in September and in January last year, it claimed that its users were sending over 30 billion messages every day. Viber claimed to have crossed 40 million registered users in India in April last year. Earlier this month, Hike raised an undisclosed amount of funding from Matt Mullenweg, co founder of WordPress, Adam D’Angelo, founder of Quora and other individual investors. Hike also launched a feature called ‘Car Match’, allowing Hike users match, connect, chat and share rides. Last month, Hike launched in 8 Indic languages including Hindi, Marathi, Tamil, Gujarati, Bengali, Kannada, Malayalam and Telugu. Hike started aggregating Hindi news stories in September, and had said then that it would roll out this feature for other regional languages as well. The messenger initially launched the News feature in August in English, aggregating stories from various leading dailies. In October, Hike introduced a new feature called Hike Direct, allowing users to send messages off grid, i.e. without the use of telecom networks or an active Internet connection.
Tokyo: A Japanese company has developed a small device that, when attached to the necks of dogs and cats, it says can analyse more than 40 kinds of movements to discern their emotions. Owners can tell if their pets are happy, relaxed, want to play or are annoyed by using a smartphone application that links to the device, according to maker Anicall. “We have more pets than kids in Japan,” Takuya Fuma, a manager in the company’s development unit, said today at the Wearable Expo in Tokyo. “We see a big market in the pet industry,” he added. “People spend money on pets.” The number of pet cats and dogs in the country in 2014 totalled 20 million, according to Japan Pet Food Association, higher than the nation’s 16.2 million children under 15. Anicall’s gizmo is different from rivals as it can be used on cats as well as dogs, which Fuma said should allow the company to cash in on the soaring popularity of felines in Japan. Currently, the device only works when owners are near their pets with their smartphones, but Fuma said the company hopes to make it possible to monitor their emotions remotely in the future by using another device to send signals over long distances. For now, he still thinks they offer a greater insight into pet’s emotions than the naked eye. “It’s possible you think pets are relaxed, but actually they aren’t,” Fuma said. The device is scheduled to hit the market around April at price of 9,000 yen (USD 75). More than 200 companies from Japan, South Korea, the United States and elsewhere are taking part in the three-day Wearable Expo, which kicked off on Thursday, to showcase their latest technologies.
New Delhi: It is now possible to learn basic Chinese with a new application available for mobile phones irrespective of their operating systems be it android, windows or the iOS. The application, ‘Ehuayu’ is a game-based, mobile Chinese language teaching software and contains the most commonly used basic spoken Chinese and phrases. Developed by Su Yue Fei, the application has been launched in major English speaking countries like America, Singapore, and Hong Kong, Philippines, India and of course China. Fei says that since everyone uses mobile phones for the smallest of their needs, it is an easy and convenient way to learn basic Chinese through games while one is playing games on mobile. “Most of the youngsters are now using mobile phones for various purposes. So I thought of developing an app which would help them learn Chinese. We waste a lot of our time by playing games on our smartphones. This application helps us enjoy the game as well teach you Chinese at the same time and also it is very convenient,” Su Yue Fei said. The app contains professional practices of the most commonly used phrases and sentences in daily life, travel, inquiry, weather, date, shopping, greetings, family use language, career and business terms. The application, which took five years to develop can be downloaded free of cost from the playstore on android, google store and appstore. “If you have nothing to do and you are getting bored, you can download this application free of cost from the playstore and learn the basics of the language,” Fei added. The application helps identify the characters written in Chinese and also has the voice facility available for the people to get the pronunciation of the words in Chinese correctly. The maker wants to promote the application and has a view to develop it in Chinese to Hindi and other foreign languages. “We are just trying to advertise the application at this moment and would further take it to higher level for the people to learn Chinese in an easier way and faster. There are ideas to launch it from Chinese to Hindi and other foreign languages,” Fei said. The working of the application is being taught to the people at the World Book Fair being held in New Delhi.
New York: Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg has said he wants to build an artificially intelligent (AI) butler like Jarvis in hit Hollywood sci-fi movie Iron Man to help run his home and assist him at work as part of the tech billionaire’s “personal challenge” for 2016. Zuckerberg, 31, who commits to a new personal challenge every year, said in a Facebook post that the “simple AI” would look like Jarvis from Hollywood blockbuster film Iron Man, referring to the AI (artificial intelligence) butler. “My personal challenge for 2016 is to build a simple AI to run my home and help me with my work. You can think of it kind of like Jarvis in Iron Man,” Zuckerberg wrote. He said he would start to build the AI with technology that is already available and teach it to understand his voice to control everything in his home from music and lights to temperature. “This should be a fun intellectual challenge to code this for myself. I’ll teach it to let friends in by looking at their faces when they ring the doorbell,” Zuckerberg posted. “I’ll teach it to let me know if anything is going on in Max’s (his daughter’s) room that I need to check on when I’m not with her,” he wrote. Zuckerberg said the system would help him visualise data in virtual reality and help him build better services, besides leading his company. “On the work side, it’ll help me visualise data in VR to help me build better services and lead my organisations more effectively,” he wrote. The tech billionaire said a part of the motivation behind this year’s challenge was the reward of building things yourself. Zuckerberg’s previous personal challenges have included learning Mandarin, reading two books a month and meeting a new person everyday.
New York: WhatsApp is soon to be enriched with the all new video calling facility. Reports reveal that this new feature is already under testing stage for iOS version 188.8.131.52 of WhatsApp. But no official announcement was made by the WhatsApp team yet. WhatsApp can be regarded an all-rounder if only the new video calling feature is introduced. Although there are a lot of good service providers such as Skype from Microsoft and Google Hangouts, WhatsApp decides to take up the challenge of pleasing its users as much as the others do. WhatsApp as such has more than 900 million active users and will also get the ‘multi-tab user interface’ option. With this, the users will be allowed to switch from chat to chat without having to go back to the main chat screen each time. Sources show that the options included on a video calling screen will be to mute a call, switch between the cameras and so on. The appearance reveals that it is the beta version which is under testing. The finalized version will be rolled out in a few weeks according to sources. It is indeed a matter of great curiosity to see how well the video calling feature meets the expectations of the users. In India, the voice calling feature of WhatsApp gradually lost its importance due to the limitations that it posed such as those of lack of clarity even on 3G network.
New York : Google is said to be in talks with automaker Ford Motor Co to help build the Internet search company’s autonomous cars, Automotive News reported, citing a person with knowledge of the project. The contract manufacturing deal, if finalised, is expected to come during the annual International Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas during the first week of January, Automotive News said. A Google spokesman told that the company would not comment on speculation, although Google officials confirmed that the company is talking to automakers. Earlier this year, Google began discussions with most of the world’s top automakers and assembled a team of traditional and nontraditional suppliers to speed efforts to bring self-driving cars to the market by 2020. In June, Google began testing tiny, bubble-shaped self-driving prototype vehicles of its own design on public roads around Mountain View. The company has also started testing self-driving prototypes in Austin. Google is expected to make its self-driving cars unit, which will offer rides for hire, a stand-alone business under its parent company, Alphabet Inc, next year, Bloomberg reported earlier. Ford, although lagging behind most competitors, ramped up its pace to develop self-driving cars earlier this year and said it would expand advanced safety technology, including automatic braking, enabling hands-free operation of cars under certain conditions by automating such basic functions as steering, braking and throttle.
A new status code called 451 was recently published to warn users whenever censorship or “legal obstacles” prevent them from seeing web content. This would also give users a much better explanation than the 403 forbidden code, which only tells them that they “don’t have permission to access on this server”, instead of saying things like “I can’t show you this for legal reasons.” A draft entitled ‘An HTTP Status Code to Report Legal Obstacles’ was published in an official website of the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF). According to the draft, responses that uses the 451 status code should include an explanation of why those sites are blocked, as well as the party responsible for it and the applicable legislation. The draft also mentions that there is a possibility for clients to access the restricted content by using technical countermeasures such as a VPN or the Tor network. According to a blog by web developer Mark Nottingham, the 451 status code was implemented mainly to highlight online censorship. Notable online organisations that promote freedom of expression, such as Lumen and ARTICLE 19, also expressed interest in being able for their websites to use the 451 status code to catalogue censorship. The downside of the 451 status code is that it isn’t always reliable, as some websites may be forced to produce HTTP 404 or similar, if they are not legally permitted to disclose that their contents are censored. As stated by the draft: “Clients cannot rely upon the use of the 451 status code. It is possible that certain legal authorities might wish to avoid transparency, and not only demand the restriction of access to certain resources, but also avoid disclosing that the dema
The latest thing the internet engineers are cooking in their lab is Light Fidelity technology, or LiFi. From laboratory test runs, the LiFi technology is reported to deliver speeds of about 224GB/second (that’s about 1000 full albums or 44 HD movies in one second). It’s obvious this is not your regular broadband, more like doped up Broadband on steroids. I can only imagine what would happen if you left it running overnight. Reports say the tech is already having real world test runs in Estonia. The technology powering LiFi is based on rapidly flashing LED lights, which causes a release of data – data that is able to travel in the visible light spectrum, which also happens to be part of the electromagnetic spectrum. The difference then, is that visible light has a wider spectrum than radio waves (which powers WiFi) giving it the ability to transfer more data. A slight disadvantage is that light waves cannot penetrate walls which makes the range restricted. Nevertheless, this also makes LiFi very secure, relative to WiFi. Apparently, it can also transmit via light bulbs, thereby making every household light bulb a potential LiFi transmitter. Truly fascinating stuff. When this technology becomes mainstream, you can expect to see its rippling effect, especially on storage devices in phones, tablets and laptops. Also expect major drops in the cost of accessing WiFi broadband, since it will now become the equivalent of dial up internet. Someone once said, there is no such thing as too fast when it comes to the internet. Guess he was right. [video id="NaoSp4NpkGg" type="youtube" width="" height="320"]
The front page of Google today featured this Doodle, bound to give Creationists a collective aneurysm. It marks the 41st anniversary of the discovery of Lucy, a set of fossils that helped us understand our species’ own origins: It was immediately obvious that the skeleton was a momentous find, because the sediments at the site were known to be 3.2 million years old. “I realised this was part of a skeleton that was older than three million years,” says Johanson. It was the most ancient early human or hominin ever found. Later it became apparent that it was also the most complete: fully 40% of the skeleton had been preserved. The Google Doodle will be seen worldwide