Monday, September 20

Month: May 2015

Google’s Self-Driving Cars Have Been in 11 Accidents, None of Which Were Its Fault, Apparently
Business

Google’s Self-Driving Cars Have Been in 11 Accidents, None of Which Were Its Fault, Apparently

Six years ago, Google began working on self-driving cars. Last May, the monolithic tech company unveiled its autonomous prototype, and many were leery. It had no steering wheel, accelerator, or brake pedal -- only a start button, a display telling riders how fast the car is going, and a big red emergency stop button. Capable of ferrying two people, riders summon the vehicle with a smartphone app, and off they go. Now, one year later, Google revealed that its self-driving cars have been in 11 minor traffic accidents since the project first began. Chris Urmson, the project's director, wrote in a web post that every accident was minor -- "light damage, no injuries" -- and had all happened over 1.7 million miles of testing, including nearly one million miles in self-driving mode. "Not once w...
New Fast Food Burger Topped With Hot Dog and Chips: Has Science Gone Too Far?
Business

New Fast Food Burger Topped With Hot Dog and Chips: Has Science Gone Too Far?

As American tastes change, fast food chains are suffering. More than half of all diners nowadays prefer a burger at a specialty restaurant or a burger restaurant than any other burger. Burger King has struggled with a harsh decline since 2008, and recently lost its number two spot at the top to Wendy's. McDonald's, which still sits on the fast food throne, isn't doing so well either, reporting a more severe sales decline than expected in the first three months of 2015. Now, Carl's Jr. and Hardee's have devised a new burger to draw summer crazed consumers away from the gourmet and foodie spots: The Most American Thickburger. For just $5.79, hungry patrons can get a burger made with a one-third pound patty of Black Angus beef, a grilled hot dog split in two, American cheese, lettuce, red oni...
Google Begins Paving Way For Future Replacement of the Password System
Business

Google Begins Paving Way For Future Replacement of the Password System

Google is well aware of how dangerous hackers have become. Web-based security attacks have increased about 23% since 2013, after all, and the cost of cybercrime skyrocketed 78% that same year. According to cyber security company McAfee, the global economy from cybercrime is about $400 billion. Now, Google is taking steps to beef up its own security measures for Gmail users. Webizens are greeted with a space to enter their usernames, and are then redirected to a new page to enter their passwords. Though it may seem simple, the new design prepares for "future authentification systems that complement passwords." There are a few advantages of splitting the username and password fields up. It reduces confusion for users who have multiple Gmail accounts, such as one for work and one for person...
ToutApp Adds New Feature to Help Sales Teams Be More Collaborative
Business

ToutApp Adds New Feature to Help Sales Teams Be More Collaborative

Sales is a notoriously tough industry to work in, and those who do are constantly trying new tips and tricks to increase their sales. Though sales is also often based on quotas which can create competition and isolation within a sales team, a new app seeks to create a climate of collaboration to help all members become more successful. According to online publication Digital Journal, sales platform ToutApp has added a feature called Sales Beat, which essentially functions like a newsfeed, updating an entire team on what their colleagues are doing -- and what works. The ToutApp platform was designed to help salespeople close more deals through analytics, email tracking, and templates. The new feature will also allow a sales team to work collaboratively by sharing best practices, and it de...
UK Law Firm Finds Social Media Plays a Role in Divorces
Lifestyle

UK Law Firm Finds Social Media Plays a Role in Divorces

There have been debates about the way that technology and digital media affect personal relationships since the dawn of social media, but a recent study conducted by a U.K. law firm found that it plays more of a role in divorces that people probably think. According to technology-centered publication Digital Trends, the law firm of Slater and Gordon conducted a study of 2,000 Britons to collect data about their thoughts, habits, and behaviors on social media as it relates to their marriages. The overall conclusion of the survey is that yes, social media does have a negative effect on some marriages. One in seven married people said that they would consider a divorce based on what their spouse was doing on social media sites. Furthermore, 17% of respondents said that they fought with the...
Google Self-Driving Cars Involved in 11 Accidents, Company Reveals
Business

Google Self-Driving Cars Involved in 11 Accidents, Company Reveals

Google acknowledged May 11 that its self-driving cars have been involved in 11 accidents since the company began working on the technology approximately six years ago. The company claims, however, that in none of the accidents have the cars been at fault. “During … 1.7 million miles of autonomous and manual driving with our safety drivers behind the wheel … not once was the self-driving car the cause of the accident,” Chris Urmson, head of the Google self-driving car project, wrote in a blog post published on the website Medium. Google addressed the issue after the Associated Press reported that Google had filed paperwork for three collisions in California, where reporting accidents is part of the agreement permitting the company to test the cars on public roads. It now appears that of t...
You’ll Never Guess Who Showed Up to This Couple’s Malibu Beach Wedding
Lifestyle

You’ll Never Guess Who Showed Up to This Couple’s Malibu Beach Wedding

A couple getting hitched on a Malibu beach saw a whole new kind of a wedding crasher after a climber got stuck on a nearby cliff. The couple, David and Jihan Chesher of Pleasant Valley, MO, had to stop their April 25 wedding as the climber was rescued by a Fire Department helicopter. The climber, Adam, had gotten stuck halfway up the side of Point Dume, not far from where the wedding was happening on the beach. The person he'd been climbing with had called for a rescue, but firetrucks and other emergency vehicles had been unable to get to him. That's when the local fire department sent over a rescue helicopter, which made a very loud entrance as it came around the side of the cliff. Fortunately, the Cheshers had a good sense of humor despite spending months planning their dream outdoor...
Chinese Teachers Observe Pennsylvania Special Education
World

Chinese Teachers Observe Pennsylvania Special Education

Teachers from China arrived in Pennsylvania in March to learn strategies for integrating special needs students into the classroom, and have begun observing classes in Pittsburgh public schools. The teachers are also in training at Duquesne University, learning about customizing elementary school programs for autistic students, in addition to classroom integration. A partnership between the Beijing Autism Association and South East Asia Prayer Center (SEAPC) in Oakmont will train families and teachers to address the needs of autistic children over the next 10 years. Each country will host trainers and set up online training resources to establish educational standards for children with autism, as well as to study potential causes. The partnership will also create a database of educational...
Tuscumbia Residents Plagued With Ongoing Flooding Woes
Local

Tuscumbia Residents Plagued With Ongoing Flooding Woes

Tuscumbia, AL is widely known for being the hometown of Helen Keller and the Alabama Music Hall of Fame. These days, however, Tuscumbia's residents are too concerned with flooding to think about their city's rich legacies. For Mattie Smith, who lives on Gail Street, the flooding is so severe that after a heavy rainfall, it looks like her house is surrounded by a moat. The floods have also forced Theresa Richards to replace the floor in her Madison Avenue home’s utility room several times. According to an April 28 Florence TimesDaily article, homes and yards all across the city are flooding -- and it's largely due to a rising number of business and housing developments, whose concrete surfaces give fewer opportunities for rainwater to seep into the ground. And solving the issue isn't a...
As Temperatures Heat Up, Gas Prices on the Rise Across the U.S.
Business

As Temperatures Heat Up, Gas Prices on the Rise Across the U.S.

From Tampa, FL to Sacramento, CA and everywhere in between, Americans are once again starting to pay a little bit more at the gas pump. Since hitting a record low of $2.03 per gallon in January, fuel prices have been steadily on the rise, with the national average for gas prices now hovering around $2.58 per gallon. This 55 cent increase marks both the highest gas prices seen in 2015 so far and the largest seasonal increase in fuel prices since 2012, according to ClarksvilleOnline.com. AAA – The Auto Club Group explains the rise in prices stems primarily from rising crude oil prices spurred upward by uncertainty and conflict throughout the oil and gas hubs of the Middle East, especially Iraq and Yemen. Because American oil companies have been reaching all-time highs of oil production, m...