Friday Tech Roundup (21 March 2014): Direct evidence of the Big Bang found

Big Bang

By on March 21, 2014 at 1:56 pm

Welcome to the Friday Tech Roundup! Contained herein is your weekly dose of some of the best tech news from across the Internet, rounded up for your edification and entertainment. Read on for all the details of the first direct evidence of the Big Bang, Sony’s Project Morpheus virtual reality headset, and Android Wear, Google’s upcoming wearable tech OS.

First direct evidence of the Big Bang has been discovered

A recent discovery by a research collaboration spanning a large number of institutions could prove to be the lynchpin in confirming the Big Bang theory. Andre Linde and his colleagues developed the “inflation” theory in 1980, a hypothesised period of exponential expansion of the universe, or as one researcher calls it, “the bang of the big bang.” It was theorised that inflation would have occurred in the early fractions of the second during which the universe began, and the BICEP2 collaboration believes that it has clearly observed the phenomenon, with direct evidence. The findings still need to be confirmed by peer review, but as you’ll see from the video below, celebrations have already begun.

XBOX CPO Marc Whitten leaves Microsoft, heads to Sonos

On Tuesday, Xbox chief product officer Marc Whitten announced both his resignation, and his plans to move into the same role for wireless audio solution company Sonos. Whitten joined Microsoft in 2000, and was present for the entirety for each of the Xbox console releases. In a statement at news.xbox.com, Whitten said “It’s incredibly tough to leave but I am confident the best days are ahead for Xbox fans, in the capable hands of a very talented team.” A replacement has not been selected to fill the role at this time, leaving the rest of the Xbox leadership team reporting in the interim directly to Microsoft’s executive vice president of operating systems Terry Myerson.

Sony demos virtual reality for PS4: Project Morpheus

During the 2014 Games Developers Conference (GDC), Sony gave attendees hands-on (or rather heads-on) demos of their virtual reality offering for PS4, currently codenamed Project Morpheus. The VR headset is clearly being developed as a direct competitor to the much talked about Oculus Rift, and like the Crystal Cove/Dev Kit 2 version of the Rift, Project Morpheus relies on a camera pointed at the user for positional and depth tracking. The PS4 camera is used to track the headset in space, thanks to a four lights on the front of the visor, and users are expected to interact with the experience via the DualShock 4, or PlayStation Move controllers. While some hands-on impressions articles have mentioned issues with light-bleed and the field of view, Sony is quick to note that this is still very much a prototype. Check out Ben Kuchera’s impressions of Project Morpheus over at Polygon.

Edward Snowden interviewed in surprise TED appearance

In a surprise appearance on the Vancouver 2014 TED stage, Edward Snowden participated in an interview via a Beam teleconference robot from his hideout “somewhere in Russia.” During the interview, Snowden encouraged any and all Internet companies to encrypt their websites, “The biggest thing that an Internet company in America can do today, right now, without consulting lawyers, to protect users of the Internet around the world, is to enable Web encryption on every page you visit,” he said. “If you look at a copy of 1984 on Amazon, the NSA can see a record of that, the Russian, the French can—the world’s library is unencrypted. This is something that we need to change, not just for Amazon—all companies need to move to an encrypted browsing habit by default.”

Later, Snowden moved on to discuss his role in leaking documents proving the US government’s involvement in unlawful surveillance, the rights of Internet users worldwide, and his support of Tim Berners-Lee’s concept of an Internet “Magna Carta”. Check out the full story over at Wired UK.

Google reveals Android Wear OS for wearable devices

The announcement of Android Wear heralds Google’s official foray into wearable technology aside from Google Glass. Android Wear leverages existing Google applications and features that focus on giving users quick access to contextual and relevant information, based on a series of indicators captured by their Android devices, and displays that information on a wearable device. The only examples provided in the announcement material are of smart-watches, and feature users controlling their watches with both touch and voice inputs. A developer preview of the Android Wear SDK is available now, giving developers the ability to extend their existing applications onto wearable devices. Google have released a number of aspirational videos that show how they would see the technology used in the wild, and Motorola and LG have already announced their upcoming Android Wear-based smart-watches.

17 comments (Leave your own)

I don’t know anyone who wears a watch. I personally find them clumsy and cumbersome.
Would anyone reading this consider one of those watch thingies?

Also, read this fast: “In a statement at news.xbox.com”

lol, sorry. I’ll go back to the hole I came from now.

 

tacitus42,

Conversely, majority of my friends (myself included) wear watches.

Currently holding me off a smart watch is majority of them don’t look particularly classy for the cost, and the sports focused ones lack features I want that would get me using it (Mostly I want an android based watch with its own GPS, not reliant on your phone).

So I’m hopeful a dedicated android sdk focused on that will hopefully drive more innovation in that space.

 

tacitus42,

They’re just a gimmick, although with the ever increasing size of smart-phones you’ll probably need one so you can keep your lapto- I mean phone in your bag or pocket, and just use your watch.
They’re not as sexy as a nice analogue watch though, reminds me of those ridiculous Tokyoflash watches.

 

Wow talking about watches when the most important article is the Snowden appearance at TED…

Ah well…

 

Mobile Phones are just the equivalent of digital Pocket watches. Wouldn’t surprise me to see history repeat itself and see phones on your wrist.

That Big Bang video is great, random dude at the door with cameras, wtf is going on?
Suddenly “5 sigma at .2″
The look on their faces is amazing.

 

RSOblivion:
Wow talking about watches when the most important article is the Snowden appearance at TED…

Ah well…

For you perhaps. I’d rather talk about watches and the big bang experiment results than Snowden.

(And lets be honest, if you are going to TED to watch some videos you can find something better than Snowden)

 

RSOblivion:
Wow talking about watches when the most important article is the Snowden appearance at TED…

Ah well…

Good to see you started off a conversation about it then.

 

Snowden schmoden.

Watches are awesome. Nothing like a smart classy watch to cap off a nice night-on-the-town outfit.

 

Interesting ‘Big Bang’ fact: The ‘big bang’ theory is actually the complete opposite to what you would assume a big bang to be. In actuality, what they are actually referring to is better described as a steady state instead of a one big bang.

The astronomer who championed the ‘steady state’ theory did so up against fierce competition from fellow scientists who subscribed to the idea that the universe was started by a massive explosion twelve billion years ago. On a radio interview he said something along the lines of “it is not as if it was started by one big bang,” and for whatever reason, a completely antonymous phrase was, from that point on, used to describe the steady state theory in non-scientific society.

Man, people are weird…

ralphwiggum Watches are awesome. Nothing like a smart classy watch to cap off a nice night-on-the-town outfit.

Amen to that! My Fossil completes me!

 

The Big Bang Theory and Steady State Theory are not the same thing buddy. Steady State theory is obsolete.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Steady_State_theory

 

matty,

That is a great point. A point I tried to make and fail is there was no ‘big bang’ in the big bang theory…

 

PinothyJ:
matty,

That is a great point. A point I tried to make and fail is there was no ‘big bang’ in the big bang theory…

Perhaps next time don’t claim the “Big Bang” is better explained as a “steady state” and then not elaborate on the science at all. Good work.

Fun fact about “explaining things”: Don’t write like a high school student trying to bullshit his way into getting an A for a subject he knows nothing about.

 

i like penguins

 
AlphaSierra216

ball0fire,

I like cows

 

matty,

Did I hurt your feelings?

 

PinothyJ:
matty,

Did I hurt your feelings?

No, I just really really dislike you and your knowledge of science is terrible, Stick to liberal arts or whatever it is you do.

 

tacitus42:
I don’t know anyone who wears a watch. I personally find them clumsy and cumbersome.

I wear one, i hate the “teenage girl looking at her phone” look that everyone has going on . Looks silly pulling a phone out all the time man.

 
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