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DJI drones helped track and stop the Notre Dame fire

DJI drones helped track and stop the Notre Dame fire

Parisian firefighters used DJI drones to track the progression of the Notre Dame fire and to find the best positions to aim fire hoses. By flying DJI Mavic Pro and Matrice M210 drones over the Notre Dame cathedral, firefighters were able to get essential data for taming the flames. Notre Dame de Paris was severely damaged by the fire that ravaged its roof, spire, stained glass window, and pipe organ. Police say the fire was likely an accident, potentially caused by ongoing renovation work. Fire brigade spokesman Gabriel Plus told local media that the drones were instrumental in saving the cathedral’s structure. “The drones allowed us to correctly use what we had at our disposal,” Plus said in comments translated from French.
Congressional Democrats Hold First-Ever Marijuana Reform Panel At Policy Retreat

Congressional Democrats Hold First-Ever Marijuana Reform Panel At Policy Retreat

For the first time, congressional Democrats held a policy retreat that featured a panel dedicated entirely to marijuana reform and the need to repair the harms of the war on drugs. The panel at House Democrats’ gathering took place last Thursday morning, with reform advocates sharing their perspective on cannabis legislation moving through Congress and discussing not just why legalization is important but emphasizing how a legal cannabis system should be implemented. That marijuana should be legalized seemed to be accepted as a foregone conclusion at the event, which attracted no opponents and contained no discussion of whether to end prohibition. Instead, conversations centered on how to shape the legal industry.
BRAZIL TRADES A RECORD 100,000 BITCOIN IN 24 HOURS

BRAZIL TRADES A RECORD 100,000 BITCOIN IN 24 HOURS

Brazil, the largest Latin American economy, broke a new record when Brazilian exchanges traded over 100 thousand bitcoin within 24 hours. In parallel, Brazil reported that its economic activity in February fell to the lowest level in the last nine months. The battle between Brazil and Argentina for the supremacy of the Bitcoin market in Latin America reached a new dimension. Cointrader Monitor, a monitoring tool that analyzes Bitcoin price movements in Brazil, announced that Brazilian cryptocurrency exchanges traded over 100,000 BTC  on April 10, 2019.
Sony Just Filed A Patent For Watching Live eSports Via PlayStation VR Like You’re Actually There

Sony Just Filed A Patent For Watching Live eSports Via PlayStation VR Like You’re Actually There

For PlayStation VR owners, watching eSports might soon be a more immersive experience. A couple of just-published patents by Sony might allow PSVR users to spectate live events and insert avatars of their friends into games. Filed in 2017 and 2018, respectively, the two patents were published just last week. The first one illustrates a way for owners of Sony's VR headset to virtually join a live event — and not just join, but be there. The proposed feature would anchor spectators to a physical location in the venue to virtually spectate and feel as though they're really there, participating in the event, crowd and all.
Where the war on weed still rages

Where the war on weed still rages

Marijuana possession led to nearly 6 percent of all arrests in the United States in 2017, FBI data shows, underscoring the level of policing dedicated to containing behavior that’s legal in 10 states and the nation’s capital. But the figure obscures the considerable variations in enforcement practices at the state and local levels. In many areas of the country in 2016, more than 20 percent of all arrests stemmed from pot possession, according to newly released county-level arrest figures from the National Archive of Criminal Justice Data. The figure exceeds 40 percent in a handful of counties, topping out at nearly 55 percent in one Georgia county.
Homebuilder sentiment inches higher, but affordability is still a problem

Homebuilder sentiment inches higher, but affordability is still a problem

The nation’s homebuilders are pleased with the strong demand they’re seeing this spring, but they continue to see buyers being held back by today’s high home prices. Builder confidence rose 1 point to 63 in April in the monthly National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index. It was at 68 last April, and then hit a 2018 high of 70 in May. Sentiment has remained in the low 60s for the past three months. Anything above 50 is considered positive. “Builders report solid demand for new single-family homes, but they are also grappling with affordability concerns stemming from a chronic shortage of construction workers and buildable lots,” said NAHB Chairman Greg Ugalde, a homebuilder and developer from Torrington, Connecticu
Adjaye pips Heatherwick to win major Paris high-rise scheme

Adjaye pips Heatherwick to win major Paris high-rise scheme

A David Adjaye-designed tower is part of a winning competition bid for a major new urban district by the River Seine in south-east Paris The practice’s 100m residential block, called Tour Seine, is one of eight buildings designed by the Hardel Le Bihan-led design team for the 100,000m² brownfield site in the Bruneseau district. The project will link the city with the Ivry-sur-Seine suburb on the Périphérique, the French capital’s ring road, and includes 25,000m² of offices, nearly 800 housing units and 20,000m² of retail. The Nouvel R team, which also features Parisian firm Buzzo Spinelli Architecture and Lebanese outfit Youssef Tohme (YTAA) saw off finalists including a team led by Heatherwick Studios, which came second, and a group led by Parisian firm 2Portzamparc.
Smart speakers’ installed base to top 200 million by year end

Smart speakers’ installed base to top 200 million by year end

Smart speakers’ global installed base is on track to top 200 million by the end of this year, according to a report out today from analysts at Canalys. Specifically, the firm forecasts the installed base will grow by 82.4 percent, from 114 million units in 2018 to 207.9 million in 2019. The U.S. will continue to lead in terms of smart speaker adoption, but a good portion of this year’s growth will also come from East Asian markets —  particularly China, the report says. The firm estimates 166 percent year-over-year growth in the installed base for smart speakers in mainland China this year — going from 22.5 million units in 2018 to 59.9 million in 2019 — to reach 13 percent smart speaker penetration in the region. That’s compared with 46 percent growth in the U.S. — going from 60.2 million units in 2018 to 87.8 million in 2019
Apple, allies seek billions in U.S. trial testing Qualcomm's business model

Apple, allies seek billions in U.S. trial testing Qualcomm's business model

(Reuters) - Apple Inc and its allies on Monday will kick off a jury trial against chip supplier Qualcomm Inc in San Diego, alleging that Qualcomm engaged in illegal patent licensing practices and seeking up to $27 billion in damages. Qualcomm, for its part, alleges that Apple forced its longtime business partners to quit paying some royalties and is seeking up to $15 billion. Filed by Apple in early 2017, the lawsuit in federal court revolves around the modem chips that connect devices like the iPhone or Apple Watch to wireless data networks. Qualcomm has spent the past two years mounting a pressure campaign of smaller legal skirmishes against Apple, seeking - and in some cases obtaining - iPhone sales bans for violating its patents.
White House to unveil latest 5G push and rural broadband initiative

White House to unveil latest 5G push and rural broadband initiative

President Trump and Federal Communications Commission Chairman Ajit Pai are expected to announce the administration’s latest plans to ensure US leadership in 5G and expand high-speed broadband access to rural areas across the country. On Friday morning, the FCC announced a new plan to roll out high-speed broadband to rural communities through the creation of the commission’s new Rural Digital Opportunity Fund. According to the FCC, the fund will “inject” $20.4 billion into broadband networks to connect up to 4 million rural homes and businesses with high-speed broadband over the next decade. “This is a critical tool towards closing the digital divide and will provide some of the critical infrastructure to connecting rural Americans with 5G technologies,” Pai said.


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