Darrell Etherington
Darrell Etherington
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Watch a monkey equipped with Elon Musk’s Neuralink device play Pong with its brain – TechCrunch

Watch a monkey equipped with Elon Musk’s Neuralink device play Pong with its brain – TechCrunch

Elon Musk’s Neuralink, one of his many companies and the only one currently focused on mind control (that we’re aware of), has and video detailing some of its recent updates — including using its hardware to make it possible for a monkey to play pong with only its brain.In the video above, Neuralink demonstrates how it used its sensor hardware and brain implant to record a baseline of activity from this macaque (named ‘Pager’) as it played a game on-screen where it had to move a token to different squares using a joystick with its hand. Using that baseline data, Neuralink was able to use...

Apr 9
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SpaceX launches 60 more Starlink satellites, making 240 launched this month alone – TechCrunch

SpaceX launches 60 more Starlink satellites, making 240 launched this month alone – TechCrunch

SpaceX has added yet more Starlink satellites to its existing constellation on orbit, with a successful delivery of 60 spacecraft this morning from Cape Canaveral in Florida. The mission used a Falcon 9 with a flight-proven booster that served on five previous launches, and a cargo fairing cover made up of two re-used halves from past flights.This is the fourth Starlink launch in less than a month, with prior batches of 60 sent up on March 14, March 11 and March 4, respectively. In total, that means it’s sent up 240 satellites in about three weeks, which is actually around on par with the...

Mar 24
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Startup founded by ‘Survivor’ champ debuts airless bike tires based on NASA rover tech – TechCrunch

Startup founded by ‘Survivor’ champ debuts airless bike tires based on NASA rover tech – TechCrunch

As NASA is quick to remind people, the investments it funnels toward space exploration often wind up improving life on Earth — and it’s now in the business of speeding up some of that work through startups. SMART, a startup founded in 2020, has a partnership with NASA through the Space Act Agreement and is part of the agency’s formal Startup Program that aims to commercialize some of its innovations. The young company today revealed its first product: An airless bicycle tire based on technology NASA engineers created to make future lunar and Martian rovers even more resilient.SMART’s METL...

Mar 16
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SpaceX flies Falcon 9 rocket booster for a record 9th time, delivers 3rd batch of Starlink satellites in two weeks – TechCrunch

SpaceX flies Falcon 9 rocket booster for a record 9th time, delivers 3rd batch of Starlink satellites in two weeks – TechCrunch

SpaceX has delivered another 60 Starlink satellites to orbit — meaning it has sent 180 in total to join its 1,000+ strong constellation in the past two weeks alone. Today’s launch also set a record for SpaceX for its Falcon 9 rocket reusability program, since it was the ninth flight and ninth landing for this particular first-stage booster.The booster was used previously on a variety of missions, including five prior Starlink launches, as well as the Demo-1 mission for the company’s Crew Dragon capsule, which was the uncrewed test flight that proved it would work as intended from launch all...

Mar 14
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Adobe delivers native Photoshop for Apple Silicon Macs and a way to enlarge images without losing detail – TechCrunch

Adobe delivers native Photoshop for Apple Silicon Macs and a way to enlarge images without losing detail – TechCrunch

Adobe has been moving quickly to update its imaging software to work natively on Apple’s new in-house processors for Macs, starting with the M1-based MacBook Pro and MacBook Air released late last year. After shipping native versions of Lightroom and Camera Raw, it’s now releasing an Apple Silicon-optimized version of Photoshop, which delivers big performance gain versus the Intel version running on Apple’s Rosetta 2 software emulation layer.How much better? Per internal testing, Adobe says that users should see improvements of up to 1.5x faster performance on a number of different features...

Mar 10
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Autonomous drone maker Skydio raises $170M led by Andreessen Horowitz – TechCrunch

Autonomous drone maker Skydio raises $170M led by Andreessen Horowitz – TechCrunch

Skydio has raised $170 million in a Series D funding round led by Andreessen Horowitz’s Growth Fund. That pushes it into unicorn territory, with $340 million in total funding and a post-money valuation north of $1 billion. Skydio’s fresh capital comes on the heels of its expansion last year into the enterprise market, and it intends to use the considerable pile of cash to help it expand globally and accelerate product development.In July of last year, , and also debuted the X2, its first dedicated enterprise drone. The company also launched a suite of software for commercial and enterprise...

Mar 1
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SpaceX is aiming to fly the first all-civilian human space mission by the end of 2021 – TechCrunch

SpaceX is aiming to fly the first all-civilian human space mission by the end of 2021 – TechCrunch

SpaceX has its first all-civilian private spaceflight mission, a high-priced galactic tourism launch that it hopes to fly by the fourth quarter of 2021. The mission, which will use SpaceX’s Dragon crew spacecraft and its Falcon 9 rocket, will include Shift4 Payments CEO Jared Isaacman, as well as three crew members to be selected and sponsored by Isaacman, his company and St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. That’s one way to drive product adoption.The mission is being called Inspiration4, and there’s already a significant digital presence for it, including a website with a countdown...

Feb 1
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MIT researchers develop a new ‘liquid’ neural network that’s better at adapting to new info – TechCrunch

MIT researchers develop a new ‘liquid’ neural network that’s better at adapting to new info – TechCrunch

A new type of neural network that’s capable of adapting its underlying behavior after the initial training phase could be the key to big improvements in situations where conditions can change quickly – like autonomous driving, controlling robots, or diagnosing medical conditions. These so-called were devised by MIT Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Lab’s Ramin Hasani and his team at CSAIL, and they have the potential to greatly expand the flexibility of AI technology after the training phase, when they’re engaged in the actual practical inference work done in the field.Typically,...

Jan 28
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Wingcopter raises $22 million to expand to the U.S. and launch a next-generation drone – TechCrunch

Wingcopter raises $22 million to expand to the U.S. and launch a next-generation drone – TechCrunch

startup has raised a $22 million Series A – its first significant venture capital raise after mostly bootstrapping. The company, which focuses on drone delivery, has come a long way since its founding in 2017, having developed, built and flown its Wingcopter 178 heavy-lift cargo delivery drone using its proprietary and patented tilt-rotor propellant mechanism, which combines all the benefits of vertical take-off and landing with the advantages of fixed-wing aircraft for longer distance horizontal flight.This new Series A round was led by Silicon Valley VC Xplorer Capital, as well as German...

Jan 24
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SpaceX’s Falcon Heavy rocket to deliver an Astrobotic lander and NASA water-hunting rover to the moon in 2023 – TechCrunch

SpaceX’s Falcon Heavy rocket to deliver an Astrobotic lander and NASA water-hunting rover to the moon in 2023 – TechCrunch

SpaceX is set to send a payload to the moon in 2023, using its larger (and infrequently used) Falcon Heavy launch vehicle. The mission will fly a lander , which itself will be carrying NASA’s VIPER, or Volatiles Investigating Polar Exploration Rover (this is the agency that loves torturing language to come up with fun acronyms, after all).The launch is currently set for later in the year, and this would be Falcon Heavy’s first moon mission if all goes to plan. It will not, however, be SpaceX’s first lunar outing, as the company has booked missions to launch lunar landers as early as 2022 on...

Apr 13
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