Interesting Reads – 2018-06-21
With e-commerce poised for exponential growth in India, the country is fast emerging as the new battleground for global retail giants. Can local players withstand the onslaught?
The two American retail giants have fought pitched, bruising battles on their home turf, and in markets around the globe. Walmart, the world's largest retailer, and Amazon, the e-commerce behemoth, have crossed swords once more, this time in the fastest growing major economy, India.
11 delivery robots that will soon carry food and packages to your door
Woowa Brothers: A robot named Deli (short for "Delicious Delivery") has been in development by Woowa Brothers, a team out of Korea University, since July. The project is actually an iterative step toward a more capable robot. Deli is being designed specifically to deliver food in indoor environments, such as food courts. A second stage of development will produce a robot capable of delivery in compound environments. Ultimately, the Woowa Brothers team will build an autonomous robot capable of handling sidewalks and city streets, which is the holy grail of driverless delivery.
India has the lowest percentage of adults using the internet in the world: Report
There have been quite a few reports that applaud the level of Internet penetration in India, but the Pew Research Center’s newest survey shows that only 25% of adults in India use the internet, at least, occasionally or report owning a smartphone in 2017.
In comparison, not only does South Korea have the highest internet use rate in Asia at 96%, it’s also the highest percentage globally. China, on the other hand, did not have data for 2017 but the reported percentage in 2016 was at 71%.
Meanwhile, the global average lies at around 75% which is thrice the level of India at this point.
Prototyping Wireless Networks
Enjoy free access to the following four papers from IEEE Communications Magazine, as well as other IEEE Communications Society magazines, journals and conferences. As a sponsor of this Tech Focus, National Instruments has provided free links on these important topics to full article content. To download these papers please register at the link provided.
- Exploiting Frame Preamble Waveforms to Support New Physical-Layer Functions in OFDM-Based 802.11 Systems
- Design and Implementation of Device-to-Device Software-Defined Networks
- CoSense: Interference Resilient ZigBee Detection in Heterogeneous Wireless Networks
- WiZizz: Energy-Efficient Bandwidth Management in IEEE 802.11ac Wireless Networks
Google Is Training Machines to Predict When a Patient Will Die
AI advances by the 'Medical Brain' team could help the internet giant finally break into the health-care business.
A woman with late-stage breast cancer came to a city hospital, fluids already flooding her lungs. She saw two doctors and got a radiology scan. The hospital’s computers read her vital signs and estimated a 9.3 percent chance she would die during her stay.
Then came Google’s turn. An new type of algorithm created by the company read up on the woman -- 175,639 data points -- and rendered its assessment of her death risk: 19.9 percent. She passed away in a matter of days.
Agile Development: Past, Present, Future
Observations of an Alibaba engineer with over ten years’ experience in the field.
Almost ten years ago, my product development team began implementing an agile development model. We became, perhaps, the very first agile team in China. As such, my experiences in the industry may prove enlightening, especially in light of the state of agile development today.
A Hippocratic Oath for Technologists
Technologists today wield a powerful tool. We are designing, prioritizing, and putting things out into the world, affecting people we have never met. We are on their wrists, in their laptops, in their pockets, and thus, in their heads. Sometimes the ethics are in clear black and white, but at other times it can be a bit more complicated.
I (the author of the post) was lucky to be in the audience to witness Alan Cooper’s recent talk at Interaction 18, which he kicked off by asking a room full of technologists to imagine some scenarios, including the following:
- You are the data analyst that helps build a nearly-perfect targeted ad platform that powers a billion-dollar business. But then foreign hackers use it to influence a presidential campaign and attack a representative democracy.
- You write a machine-learning spell-check algorithm, the best in the world and deployed globally. But one day it auto-corrects some prescription drug names into different drug names, causing harm to innocent people.
The point of examples like these are not to blame the technology or it’s makers. The point is to illustrate the responsibility we bear for what we make. As Cooper says in his talk, we move forward not just by patching holes in current technology, but by preventing these kinds of abuses from being an option in future technology.
Startups in India fail to move the needle; things could change if firms can draw on research
India has arguably the world’s fastest growing startup ecosystem. Yet, none of our companies made it to the MIT Technology Review’s Smartest Companies list (2012-2016). In contrast, China had 14 and US had 105 companies on that list. One of our companies made it to the list in 2017, but I do not see any great globally competitive technological innovation from the firm. In the same vein, 106 of the world’s unicorns are in the US, 98 in China and only 10 in India. Varun writes for Firstpost.com: Why don’t our companies create global impact and significant economic value?
Biotech nation: Support for innovators heralds a new India
Innovation is key to solving many problems faced by communities, societies, nations or humanity as a whole. Nurturing innovation requires special attention to maximize benefits for those with the greatest need.
An innovation ecosystem models the economic dynamics of the complex relationships between entities, which in this case are the material resources and humans whose goal is to enable technology development and innovation.
Innovation is believed to be the fundamental source of significant wealth generation within an economy. An innovation ecosystem is thriving and healthy when the resources invested in the knowledge economy (either through private, government, or direct business investment) are replenished by innovation induced profit increases in the commercial economy. The interdependence of innovation and entrepreneurship is therefore a clear one.
Yoga & Common Yoga Protocol 2017
The concepts and practices of Yoga originated in India about several thousand years ago. Its founders were great Saints and Sages. The great Yogis presented rational interpretation of their experiences of Yoga and brought about a practical and scientifically sound method within every one’s reach. Yoga today, is no longer restricted to hermits, saints, and sages; it has entered into our everyday lives and has aroused a worldwide awakening and acceptance in the last few decades. The science of Yoga and its techniques have now been reoriented to suit modern sociological needs and lifestyles. Experts of various branches of medicine including modern medical sciences are realizing the role of these techniques in the prevention and mitigation of diseases and promotion of health.
Yoga is one of the six systems of Vedic philosophy. Maharishi Patanjali, rightly called "The Father of Yoga" compiled and refined various aspects of Yoga systematically in his "Yoga Sutras" (aphorisms). He advocated the eight folds path of Yoga, popularly known as "Ashtanga Yoga" for all-round development of human beings. They are:- Yama, Niyama, Asana, Pranayama, Pratyahara, Dharana, Dhyana and Samadhi. These components advocate certain restraints and observances, physical discipline, breath regulations, restraining the sense organs, contemplation, meditation and samadhi. These steps are believed to have a potential for improvement of physical health by enhancing circulation of oxygenated blood in the body, retraining the sense organs thereby inducing tranquility and serenity of mind. The practice of Yoga prevents psychosomatic disorders and improves an individual’s resistance and ability to endure stressful situations.