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For Better AR Cameras, Swap Plastic Lenses for Silicon Chips

This week, startup Metalenz announced that it has created a silicon chip that, paired with an image sensor, can distinguish objects by the way they polarize light. The company says its “PolarEyes” will be able to make facial authentication less vulnerable to spoofing, improve 3D imaging for augmented and virtual reality, aid in telehealth by distinguishing...

What You Need to Know About the FAA 5G Kerfuffle

AT&T and Verizon finally fired up vital components of their 5G networks in the United States on Wednesday. Mostly.The two companies had already agreed twice to delaying the activation of the parts of their networks that operated on the so-called C-band, because the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) had raised concerns about the spectrum’s...

Legged Robots Learn to Hike Harsh Terrain

Robots, like humans, generally use two different sensory modalities when interacting with the world. There’s exteroceptive perception (or exteroception), which comes from external sensing systems like lidar, cameras, and eyeballs. And then there’s proprioceptive perception (or proprioception), which is internal sensing, involving things like touch,...

Detect Solar Flares and Gamma-Ray Bursts for Less Than $100

In the 1960s and ’70s, musicians would sometimes insert into their releases odd sounds that could be made intelligible only by rotating the vinyl record backward using your finger. If you suspect this is only an urban legend, load a digital version of Electric Light Orchestra’s 1975 recording of “Fire on High” into an audio editor like Audacity and...

Taking Cosmology to the Far Side of the Moon

A team of Chinese researchers are planning to use the moon as a shield to detect otherwise hard-to-observe low frequencies of the electromagnetic spectrum and open up a new window on the universe. The Discovering the Sky at the Longest Wavelengths (DSL) mission aims to seek out faint, low frequency signals from the early cosmos using an array of ten...

Can Freight Train Cars Go Electric—and Self-Driving?

Moving freight by rail hasn’t changed a whole heck of a lot over the last several decades. And there are good reasons for this: trains can move freight four times more efficiently than trucks can, and they can move a huge amount of it at once with minimal human supervision. The disadvantage of trains is that they’re best at long distance hub-to-hub...

A First: An AI System Has Been Named An Inventor

The South African patent office made history in July when it issued a patent that listed an artificial intelligence system as the inventor.The patent is for a food container that uses fractal designs to create pits and bulges in its sides. Designed for the packaging industry, the new configuration allows containers to fit more tightly together so they...

The Lies that Powered the Invention of Pong

In 1971 video games were played in computer science laboratories when the professors were not looking—and in very few other places. In 1973 millions of people in the United States and millions of others around the world had seen at least one video game in action. That game was Pong.Two electrical engineers were responsible for putting this game in the...

Video Friday: Guitar Bot

Video Friday is your weekly selection of awesome robotics videos, collected by your friends at IEEE Spectrum robotics. We’ll also be posting a weekly calendar of upcoming robotics events for the next few months; here's what we have so far (send us your events!):ICRA 2022: 23–27 May 2022, PhiladelphiaERF 2022: 28–30 June 2022, Rotterdam, GermanyCLAWAR...

Learn About the Candidates Running for 2023 President-Elect

The IEEE Board of Directors has nominated Life Fellow Thomas Coughlin and Senior Members Kathleen Kramer and Maike Luiken as candidates for IEEE president-elect. IEEE Life Fellow Kazuhiro Kosuge is seeking to be a petition candidate.Other members who want to become a petition candidate still may do so by submitting their intention to elections@ieee.org...

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