Each month we take a look at recent technology news to spot the trends and advances in software and other industries. If you spot a piece of news that should be shared or have a comment, send it to me via email.
Uber started by convincing drivers to use their own cars as (not) taxis to haul drunks and carless folks around town. Now they’re trying to do away with the drivers as they test self-driving cars in Pittsburg. What next for the app borne business? Well, you might just get to take a quick flight across town if research pans out.
Uber apparently thinks research into the use of vertical takeoff and landing aircraft for short hops around the city might make sense. Anywhere traffic jams ruin your daily commute seems to be a prime candidate for this service, but only if you have a safe, FAA-approved place to take off and land. Does anyone really think the feds will let us land aircraft in our driveways? Come to think of it, I’m one of those people who said cities and states would never let driver-less cars on the road, so maybe they are onto something.
Self-driving cars continue to make news as more auto manufacturers get involved. This time Renault SA and Nissan Motor Co. partnered with Microsoft to use its Azure cloud services.
Navigation, predictive maintenance and over-the-air software updates are expected. The carmaker’s alliance includes plans for at least 10 vehicles with self-driving capabilities by 2020.
It takes a million – a million people, that is, to colonize Mars so we humans can survive. At least that’s what Elon Musk says. He’s putting money into plans and rockets to get people there.
Musk announced on Twitter that his SpaceX aerospace company successfully tested the methane-fueled rocket that will power the Mars bound spacecraft.
One question, though: While climate change remains a bad thing here on Earth, will it be OK on Mars, where the climate is inhospitable for humans?
At Microsoft Ignite in Atlanta, Georgia, Microsoft announced that Windows Server 2016 will be generally available in October. They extended their partnership with Docker Inc. to make the Commercially Supported Docker Engine available to Windows Server 2016 customers at no additional cost.
Also, System Center 2016 will be generally available in October, which Microsoft says will offer “a simplified management solution across the datacenter and the cloud for Windows Server 2016 software-defined datacenter features.”
In Azure news, it gets new monitoring abilities and Operations Management Suite updates. And the next technical preview of Azure Stack will bring Azure technology to customer datacenters.
Microsoft designed a new feature for the Edge browser to protect users from phishing and other exploits. Enabling Windows Defender Application Guard isolates Microsoft Edge from all other files and processing running on your computer. That’s supposed to prevent exploits of your computer.
The feature won’t roll out to all users until sometime in 2017. So if you tend to open up questionable email, just stop at least until then. Microsoft says 90 percent of phishing emails use the browser to start attacks on your computer.
Did Apple dump the earphone jack from its latest iPhone just to force you to spend more money buying its AirPods, those funny looking Bluetooth earbuds?
The only thing I’ve managed to keep from losing that’s so small has been hearing aids that were molded to stay solidly in my ears. And now Apple wants you to spend $159 on something small that will be lost, stepped on, rolled over by your office chair, or forgotten at Starbucks when you realize that yes, today you must get to work on time.