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Lamborghini’s latest Huracán is a supercar with a supercomputer

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Over the past few decades, technology has made vehicles safer and easier to drive. Anti-lock brakes, traction control, torque vectoring and other bits of tech keep cars on the road instead of flying into a ditch when things get hairy. It’s why newer cars typically handle corners better than older cars.

At Lamborghini, they’ve taken things further with their new Lamborghini Dinamica Veicolo Integrata or LDVI system. The Engine Control Unit (ECU) takes data from the entire car and uses it to adjust how the new Huracán EVO Spyder drives in real time (actually in less than 20 milliseconds. But that’s about as close as you can get to real time). Cars have been doing some form of this for a while but the Italian automaker needs to be able to do this at incredible speeds and in environments your typical sedan or SUV doesn’t encounter.

At Lamborghini, they’ve taken things further with their new Lamborghini Dinamica Veicolo Integrata or LDVI system. The Engine Control Unit (ECU) takes data from the entire car and uses it to adjust how the new Huracán EVO Spyder drives in real time (actually in less than 20 milliseconds. But that’s about as close as you can get to real time). Cars have been doing some form of this for a while but the Italian automaker needs to be able to do this at incredible speeds and in environments your typical sedan or SUV doesn’t encounter.

With this technology, Lamborghini is able to take the raw power of an all-wheel-drive supercar with a V10 engine and 630 horsepower and tame it, just enough, so your average driver (who can shell out $287,400) can enjoy themselves behind the wheel of the all-wheel-steering vehicle without, you know, flying into a ditch.

To achieve this, the LVDI is actually a super fast central processing unit that takes in data about the road surface, the car’s setup, the tires and how the driver is driving the vehicle. It then uses that info to control various aspects of the Huracan.

The system works in concert with the Lamborghini Piattaforma Inerziale (LPI) version 2.0 hardware sensors. This system uses gyroscopes and accelerometers located at the car’s center of gravity. It measures the vehicle’s movements and shares that data with the LVDI computer.

Lamborghini says the system is so in tune with all aspects of a drive that it can actually predict the best driving setup for the next moment. In other words, if you’re behind the wheel flying around corners on a back road, the system will recognize your behavior as you enter a corner and adjust itself.

“Where it’s possible to do a bigger jump in the future is with the intelligent use of four-wheel drive and four-wheel steering and the movement and control of the torque wheel by wheel in a way that can be more predictable and that is what we have with the Huracan EVO,” said Maurizio Reggiani, chief technology officer of Automobili Lamborghini.

Lamborghini is thinking about a world beyond a completely gas-powered engine though — it has a pipeline for hybrid and electric vehicles. But Reggiani notes that Lamborghini will probably be the last automaker to leave behind a large growling power plant.

Putting all that power to the ground in a controllable way requires an incredible amount of technology — that’s where LVDI and other pieces of technology come in. The automaker believes the result is a driving experience that matches exactly what the driver wants, regardless of the mode the car is in. Whether it be Strada, Sport, or the track ready Corsa, the vehicle (in a controlled way) should deliver.

That control allows a driver to do something that typically takes months if not years to master: drifting. It goes against what the car wants to do — lose traction. But in Sport mode it’s possible. To do that, the vehicle has to figure out (in real time and safely) things like what angle it wants to slide. The Huracán EVO Spyder has to understand that you want to drift and not fight that. If it does, it will jerk the car (and driver) back into alignment.

Lamborghini Huracan EVO Spyder

To relive your Fast and Furious dreams, the automaker started where lots of companies start with new technology: In the simulator. But a computer can’t faithfully reproduce the real world. Mostly that has to do with tires, a variable that’s tough to predict because of the density of the rubber’s compound and its wear.

Then, of course, there’s the driver. We all drive differently but the experience must be the same for everyone. It’s important that even with all that technology, it’s still a driving experience. “We don’t want to have something that substitutes the driver. We want to have a car that is able to understand what the driver wants to do,” Reggiani said.

Lamborghini is known for large engines, intense growls, striking design and bank-busting prices. But the reality is all that power would be useless if drivers couldn’t actually control the car. The automaker’s latest system makes that possible for everyone. Sure, only a select few can own a Lamborghini, but everyone can appreciate a system that makes driving safer while simultaneously more fun.

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Artificial intelligence pioneers win tech’s ‘Nobel Prize’

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Computers have become so smart during the past 20 years that people don’t think twice about chatting with digital assistants like Alexa and Siri or seeing their friends automatically tagged in Facebook pictures.

But making those quantum leaps from science fiction to reality required hard work from computer scientists like Yoshua Bengio, Geoffrey Hinton and Yann LeCun. The trio tapped into their own brainpower to make it possible for machines to learn like humans, a breakthrough now commonly known as “artificial intelligence,” or AI.

Their insights and persistence were rewarded Wednesday with the Turing Award, an honor that has become known as technology industry’s version of the Nobel Prize. It comes with a $1 million prize funded by Google, a company where AI has become part of its DNA.

The award marks the latest recognition of the instrumental role that artificial intelligence will likely play in redefining the relationship between humanity and technology in the decades ahead.

Artificial intelligence is now one of the fastest-growing areas in all of science and one of the most talked-about topics in society,” said Cherri Pancake, president of the Association for Computing Machinery, the group behind the Turing Award.

Although they have known each other for than 30 years, Bengio, Hinton and LeCun have mostly worked separately on technology known as neural networks. These are the electronic engines that power tasks such as facial and speech recognition, areas where computers have made enormous strides over the past decade. Such neural networks also are a critical component of robotic systems that are automating a wide range of other human activity, including driving.

Their belief in the power of neural networks was once mocked by their peers, Hinton said. No more. He now works at Google as a vice president and senior fellow while LeCun is chief AI scientist at Facebook. Bengio remains immersed in academia as a University of Montreal professor in addition to serving as scientific director at the Artificial Intelligence Institute in Quebec.

“For a long time, people thought what the three of us were doing was nonsense,” Hinton said in an interview with The Associated Press. “They thought we were very misguided and what we were doing was a very surprising thing for apparently intelligent people to waste their time on. My message to young researchers is, don’t be put off if everyone tells you what are doing is silly.” Now, some people are worried that the results of the researchers’ efforts might spiral out of control.

While the AI revolution is raising hopes that computers will make most people’s lives more convenient and enjoyable, it’s also stoking fears that humanity eventually will be living at the mercy of machines.

Bengio, Hinton and LeCun share some of those concerns especially the doomsday scenarios that envision AI technology developed into weapons systems that wipe out humanity.

But they are far more optimistic about the other prospects of AI empowering computers to deliver more accurate warnings about floods and earthquakes, for instance, or detecting health risks, such as cancer and heart attacks, far earlier than human doctors.

“One thing is very clear, the techniques that we developed can be used for an enormous amount of good affecting hundreds of millions of people,” Hinton said.

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This device makes it easy for the elderly to stay in touch with their loved ones

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Only 20 percent of over-75s in the UK have a smartphone compared to 95 percent of 16-to-24-year-olds. Digital technologies change fast, become obsolete quickly and usually need you to spend a bit of time learning how to use them.

This helps explain why most older adults tend to use what they know best when it comes to communicating, which usually means a phone call via a landline or basic mobile, instead of a quick text or social media update.

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But it doesn’t have to be this way. My colleague Massimo Micocci and I have recently designed a more modern device we hope will help older people stay in more frequent touch with instant updates, but that has a familiar feel to it. By drawing on smart materials and what we call “design metaphors”, we hope to make new technology more accessible.

When older people don’t have access to instant messaging, a phone call or a visit may be the only way for friends and family to check their loved ones are well. And doing so more than (or even) once a day might not be feasible or wanted.

Similarly, older people might feel that ringing their relatives morning and night just to let them know they’re OK would be an inconvenience. And while you can buy specialized monitoring devices that record people’s movements around their home, these often feel like an invasion of privacy.

With this in mind, we developed something that lets older people broadcast their status to their families like a social media update. Our device (which is designed for research purposes rather than commercial development) looks like an analogue radio. But it lets users transmit information about their activity captured from a wearable heartbeat sensor in a way that is entertaining and intuitive, and only shared with selected group of followers.

The keep-in-touch. Author provided

The information includes how energetic their current activity is, for example whether they are conducting an active task such as gardening, or a relaxing and restful one such as reading a book.

By designing the device to evoke technology with which people will feel instantly familiar, we’re using the principle of design metaphor. Most people find it easier to interact with devices that resemble products they have already used.

In cognitive psychology, this is known as inferential learning, referring to when someone applies established knowledge in their brain to a new context. The design of our “radio” device makes it easier for users to work out how to use it, based on their previous interactions with traditional radios – even though it has a very different function.

Giving users control

There are plenty of systems that enable people to monitor older family members. But usually these are fully passive, where the older adults are observed directly through cameras and sensors around their homes. Or they are fully active, for example mobile phones that require the older adults to stop what they’re doing and respond right away.

Instead, our device lets people choose the level of communication they want. It runs in the background and doesn’t transmit detailed information such as images of people in their homes. This makes it a much less intrusive way of letting someone know you’re OK.

We also wanted to make the device very easy to understand, interpret and remember. So rather than having an information screen that showed text or images, we wanted to create a display that used so-called smart materials to convey what the user was doing.

In this context, smart materials are those that can change color, shape, viscosity or how much light they emit. Our research showed that light-emitting materials were the best way of conveying messages without words for both under and over-60s.

The “radio” is just a research prototype but it has allowed us to understand that the combination of innovative materials and familiar artefacts can be a successful way to encourage aging users to adopt new technologies. In this way, smart materials and design metaphors could help bridge the digital gap and promote innovation among older consumers.

This article is republished from The Conversation by Gabriella Spinelli, Reader in Design Innovation, Brunel University London under a Creative Commons license. Read the original article.

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Nokia 9 Pureview comes to the UK

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Nokia 9 PureView’s next generation computational imaging innovation is now available through a range of UK retailers and e-tailers

  • The Nokia 9 Pureview, which won 24 awards at Mobile World Congress 2019, is now available to buy in the UK.
  • Created for photography enthusiasts, the limited-edition Nokia 9 Pureview comes in Midnight Blue, for a RRP of £549.00.

London, 26 March 2019 – HMD Global, the home of Nokia phones, today announces the Nokia 9 PureView is now available to buy from Argos, Amazon, Mobile Phones Direct, Buymobiles.netvery.co.uk and littlewoods.com for £549.00 from 26th March 2019.

The Nokia 9 PureView, features the world’s first five camera array with ZEISS Optics, putting next generation computational imaging technology into the hands of photography enthusiasts. Every picture taken with the Nokia 9 PureView is HDR. All five cameras work together simultaneously to capture your image and Nokia 9 PureView fuses it together into one 12MP photo with outstanding dynamic range and unparalleled depth of field.

World’s first 5 camera array smartphone

The Nokia 9 PureView features the world’s first five camera array system with ZEISS Optics. It has two colour sensors for accurate vibrant colour images and three monochromatic sensors which give sharpness and detail. All five sensors work together to collect up to 10-times the amount of light than a single sensor[i] of the same type.   

Every shot taken by the Nokia 9 PureView uses all five cameras to capture at least 60MP of imaging data. To process and fuse the images Nokia 9 PureView has maximised the heterogenous computing architecture of the Qualcomm® Snapdragon™ mobile platform assigning tasks across ISP, DSP, GPU and CPU. Featuring a dedicated imaging co-processor that individually adjusts exposure and white balance on each camera across the scene, the Nokia 9 PureView gives you a glimpse into the future of smartphone photography.  

Sarah Edge, General Manager UK and Ireland said: “People in the UK want to be able to take top quality images that capture every detail on their smartphone; be it of stunning scenery or a picture-perfect brunch. Designed with photographers in mind, the Nokia 9 PureView delivers these atmospheric shots by utilising the great depth of field which captures 1,200 layers, dynamic range, as well as native black and white imaging.” 

Exceptional detail and dynamic range

Every image captured on the Nokia 9 PureView is HDR, with up to 12.4 stops of dynamic range and a full scene 12MP depth map. This means each 12MP JPG image benefits from outstanding detail in areas of both bright sunlight and shade.

Endless pre, during and post capture possibilities

The unparalleled high-fidelity 12MP depth map created with each JPG enables beautiful Bokeh and provides the opportunity to explore your inner artist using Google Photo’s built in depth editor. Now you can re-focus, adjust blur and saturation across the scene, even after you have captured the shot.

Designed with the needs of photography enthusiasts at its heart, Nokia 9 PureView also features the ability to capture images in uncompressed RAW “DNG” format and edit them directly on the phone yourself thanks to our partnership with Adobe Lightroom. It has been said that 50% of the art of photography is in post-production and with Nokia 9 PureView you have every opportunity to shine.

The Nokia 9 PureView features an update to our popular Pro Camera UI – delivering even more control over your photography. Now capture exciting time lapse photography with support for exposure times up to 10 seconds. In addition, the new Pro Camera UI on Nokia 9 PureView includes the ability to adjust the Exposure Value in increments of just 1/3rd of a stop, letting you adjust exposure compensation with more control than ever before.

Flagship experiences in a flawless finish

The Nokia 9 PureView is packed with advanced technologies. Utilizing heterogenous computing, the Qualcomm® Snapdragon™ 845 Mobile Platform intelligently splits imaging workloads across various technology cores. The Nokia 9 PureView also features a bright 5.99” 2K pOLED screen with PureDisplay technology and integrated Qi Wireless charging. The PureDisplay screen technology features HDR10 support letting you enjoy crisp details, great contrast and rich colours in supported content. The Nokia 9 PureView screen also features an integrated fingerprint sensor, with security features further complemented by advanced biometric face unlock technology.

To top off the flagship-level quality and attention to detail, the Nokia 9 PureView has a flawless finish that radiates the thoughtful design you expect of every Nokia smartphone. All five cameras are seamlessly integrated into the 8mm slim phone ensuring there is no camera bump. Be assured that the Nokia 9 PureView will get through the knocks and mishaps of real-life with a 6000 series aluminium chassis with our signature dual diamond cuts and the Corning® Gorilla® Glass 5 on the front and back. 

Pure, secure, and up-to-date, AndroidTM 9 Pie reinforced with Android One

The Nokia 9 PureView launches with Android 9 Pie out of the box. It joins the comprehensive line-up of Nokia smartphones in the Android One family, which means it delivers the latest Android innovations and software experiences. Nokia smartphones with Android One offer great storage and battery life right out of the box and come with three years of monthly security patches and two major OS updates.

Android 9 Pie includes AI-powered features to make your device smarter, faster and adapt to your behaviour as you use it, so your smartphone experience gets better with time. The Adaptive Battery feature limits battery usage from apps you don’t use often, and App Actions predicts what you’re about to do so you can get to your next action quickly. These features further streamline your device’s functionality and your overall Android experience.

The Nokia 9 PureView will receive three years of monthly security patches and two major OS updates, as guaranteed in the Android One program. In addition, Google Play Protect scans over 50 billion apps per day to keep your phone safe from malware, making the Nokia 9 PureView among the most secure phones on the market. It also comes with easy access to helpful innovative services including the Google Assistant, which helps you get things done throughout the day, as well as Google Photos with free unlimited high-quality photo storage. 

Availability

The Nokia 9 PureView comes in Midnight Blue is available on 26th March 2019 from for a RRP of £549.00, with a free pair of Nokia True Wireless Ear Buds until 18th April, from Argos, Amazon, Mobile Phones Direct, Buymobiles.netvery.co.uk and littlewoods.com.

About HMD Global

Headquartered in Espoo, Finland, HMD Global Oy is the home of Nokia phones. HMD designs and markets a range of smartphones and feature phones targeted at a range of consumers and price points. With a commitment to innovation and quality, HMD is the proud exclusive licensee of the Nokia brand for phones and tablets. For further information, seewww.hmdglobal.com. Nokia is a registered trademark of Nokia Corporation. Android is a trademark of Google LLC. Qualcomm and Snapdragon are trademarks of Qualcomm Incorporated, registered in the United States and other countries. Qualcomm Snapdragon is a product of Qualcomm Technologies, Inc. and/or its subsidiaries.

Free storage at high quality, requires Google account and internet connection. Not applicable for RAW format files.

 Smartphone camera sensor refers to a single colour sensor (12MP, 1.25um, F/1.8). See more info at https://www.nokia.com/phones/en_int/nokia-9.

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