Facebook’s open source library has grown to 9.9M lines of code

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Facebook loves to share how much it likes open source, and the social network has followed through on that note with a status update on its activities this year.

Here’s a rundown, by the numbers:

• Launched 63 new projects since January 2014
Total active Github portfolio stands at exactly 

• 200 for projects spread across Facebook, Instagram and Parse

• Facebook’s open source projects have seen 13,000 total commits, an increase of 45 percent from the second half of 2013.

• Projects collectively have netted 20,000 forks and 95,000 followers.

• Facebook’s total open source library stands at approximately 9.9 million lines of code.

The Menlo Park, Calif.-based company highlighted a number of its more popular projects in a blog post on Friday, putting user interface Javascript library React and iOS/OS X animation engine Pop in the spotlight.

The latter has played a large role in a pair of other Facebook projects with which end users might be more familiar.

That would be the first two projects rolled out from Facebook’s Creative Labs department: digital news reader app Paper and Snapchat-competitor Slingshot.

Facebook engineers revealed Pop “spawned a host of extensions and integrations, including the iOS version of our very own Slingshot.” Pop has also grown to become Facebook’s second most popular open source project ever.

Looking forward, Facebook is following through on some of the products it unveiled to developers at F8 in San Francisco back in April. One product making its way out the door today in beta access is Display Node, Facebook’s open source asynchronous UI framework.

Source: ZD Net

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CNN and Georgia Tech want drones for news coverage

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Drones are proving themselves useful in multiple ways: from delivering packages to acting as lifeguards to being spies for the military to providing Internet coverage. It’s no surprise then that media outlets are now looking at the use of drones for their reporting, especially since drones can get into areas that people, or helicopters, cannot. This summer, CNN and Georgia tech are teaming up to research the usage of drones for news coverage.

The CNN/Georgia Tech team will be looking at not just access to airspace via drones, but also at personnel and safety issues. They’ll be sharing their findings with the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), which is currently developing new regulations for unmanned aerial vehicles. Considering the FAA has banned the use of drones for all commercial purposes, including news gathering, a large news organization like CNN wants to have some say in any rules that regulate them.

David Vigilante, CNN’s Senior Vice President, Legal, said:

“Our hope is that by working cooperatively to share knowledge, we can accelerate the process for CNN and other media organizations to safely integrate this new technology into their coverage plans.”

Drones could cover certain stories for media outlets much more effectively than humans. In areas where transportation is all but impossible, drone coverage could provide valuable information. For example, a drone could fly into a major disaster area and record video footage of the damage. Drones could also be used for investigative journalism. Of course, for that to happen, the FAA has to approve it first, so we’ll see if CNN and Georgia Tech’s research affects any rulings the agency makes.

Source: DVICE

These paintings require a smartphone to be viewed properly

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Too many people seem to think they can’t see an artwork properly unless it’s viewed through a smartphone lens. The formerly contemplative, tech-free spaces of art galleries and museums have become hubs of annoying photo-snapping and Instagramming adults.

Brooklyn-based conceptual artist J. Robert Feld finds this alarming. “People rush through a museum, like a scavenger hunt, capturing images in their devices, as if that’s an appropriate substitute for pausing and contemplating the work,” he tells Co.Design.

To explore our phone-induced disconnection, Feld created a painting series that requires that you view it through a smartphone camera–in order to see it properly. In Mondrian Inverted: The Viewer Is Not Present, Feld faithfully reproduced Dutch painter Piet Mondrian’s abstract geometric compositions–but inverted their color schemes. White stripes turn black; red becomes teal; deep blues become ochre. The inverted paintings look oddly familiar but somehow off. But when you look at them through the inverted color function on your iPhone or Android phone, the colors flip back, and the composition appears as Mondrian originally painted it.

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“The paintings themselves aren’t the work: The act of looking through the phone and seeing the painting appear more real and recognizable on the screen than on the wall in front of you is the concept of the series,” Feld says. This sense of hyperreality, something we’ve all experienced when staring at screens, is what Feld intentionally incorporates into painting. He’s making a point, of course, about our disconcertingly slight and double-time way of seeing. “The experience of looking through the smartphone is more pleasurable than simply looking at the painting directly,” Feld says. The concept might seem gimmicky at first, but it’s a wry comment on the device addiction that we all to some extent suffer from.

But why Mondrian? Feld chose Mondrian because of its universal appeal and familiarity. And although Mondrian died virtually unknown and penniless, his style–characterized by primary colors wedged in by black lines on an X and Y-axis–is universally recognizable to the art-touring masses. “It’s the Helvetica of modern art,” Feld says. “You don’t need an MFA to understand what I’m conveying; you just need a smartphone.”

Here’s how to invert the paintings in the slide show above:

To invert on iOS: Settings > General > Accessibility > Accessibility Shortcut > Invert Colors.

To invert on a Mac: System Preferences > Accessibility >Display > Invert Colors.

For more photos follow the source link below.

Source: Fast Company

Third-party chargers, Lightning cables reportedly damage iPhone power management IC

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An iPhone 5 logic board with U2 power management IC circled in blue. | Source: mendmyi

An iOS device repair company in the UK reports third-party charging accessories are causing damage to a critical power management component in Apple’s iPhone 5, rendering the handset inoperable.

After seeing a rash of iPhone 5 handsets come in with battery charging issues, repair firm mendmyi was able to isolate the problem to unofficial USB adapters and USB-to-Lightning cables, the company reported on its blog earlier this week.

The theory is third-party charging accessories do not properly regulate electrical current flowing into the handset, which either burns out or renders inoperable a power distribution IC labeled “U2.” Located just beneath Apple’s A6 SoC on the iPhone’s logic board, the IC routes power to the battery and integrated charging controller, the sleep/wake button and controls certain USB functions.

Users affected by the issue may see iPhone battery levels remain at one percent while charging, unexpected shutdowns and partial or complete failure to power up when connected to a power source.

It is unclear if the problem is limited to the iPhone 5, but in theory cheap third-party products like USB adapters could potentially damage the sensitive circuitry of any iPhone model as they may not be built to acceptable tolerances and are thus unable to properly regulate voltage and current. As evidenced by Apple’s recent recall of European market 5-watt power adapters, even the world’s largest tech company runs into problems with manufacturing power regulating accessories.

Apple previously issued a warning to Chinese iPhone users last July asking that they use only official power adapters like those supplied with the device. The notice was issued after two people were electrocuted, one fatally, by iPhones connected to “counterfeit” adapters.

According to mendmyi, damaged U2 ICs can be replaced and the company charges 66 pounds, or roughly $112, for the service.

Source: Apple Insider

Charter Users In St. Louis Get Sudden Speed Boost

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A magical and wonderful thing has happened to some customers who have Charter Internet service After restarting their cable modems for some reason or another, they found that their home internet connections had received a speed boost. It was a big one, boosting real-life speeds from about 30 mbps to 100 mbps.

Reports of the speed boost cropped up on DSLReports on a thread about a planned speed boost elsewhere. St. Louis residents shared their good fortune with the world.

Confusingly, Charter does offer a 100 mbps service tier to customers. As Legit Reviews points out, these speedsters received a speed boost from 100 to 120 mbps, but is that enough to continue paying for the upgrade?

If you’re a Charter customer in that area, try power cycling your modem to find out whether you get the update, too. You may find a pleasant surprise.

The question is: why? Sure, St. Louis is in the same state as Google Fiber rollout site Kansas City, but it’s a long drive and a heck of a commute.

Source: Consumerist

NASA Beams “Hello, World!” Video from Space via Laser

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NASA successfully beamed a high-definition video 260 miles from the International Space Station to Earth Thursday using a new laser communications instrument.

Transmission of “Hello, World!” as a video message was the first 175-megabit communication for the Optical Payload for Lasercomm Science (OPALS), a technology demonstration that allows NASA to test methods for communication with future spacecraft using higher bandwidth than radio waves.

“The International Space Station is a test bed for a host of technologies that are helping us increase our knowledge of how we operate in space and enable us to explore even farther into the solar system,” said Sam Scimemi, International Space Station division director at NASA Headquarters in Washington. “Using the space station to investigate ways we can improve communication rates with spacecraft beyond low-Earth orbit is another example of how the orbital complex serves as a stepping stone to human deep space exploration.”

Optical communication tools like OPALS use focused laser energy to reach data rates between 10 and 1,000 times higher than current space communications, which rely on radio portions of the electromagnetic spectrum.

Because the space station orbits Earth at 17,500 mph, transmitting data from the space station to Earth requires extremely precise targeting. The process can be equated to a person aiming a laser pointer at the end of a human hair 30 feet away and keeping it there while walking.

To achieve this extreme precision during Thursday’s demonstration, OPALS locked onto a laser beacon emitted by the Optical Communications Telescope Laboratory ground station at the Table Mountain Observatory in Wrightwood, California, and began to modulate the beam from its 2.5-watt, 1,550-nanometer laser to transmit the video. The entire transmission lasted 148 seconds and reached a maximum data transmission rate of 50 megabits per second. It took OPALS 3.5 seconds to transmit each copy of the “Hello World!” video message, which would have taken more than 10 minutes using traditional downlink methods.

“It’s incredible to see this magnificent beam of light arriving from our tiny payload on the space station,” said Matt Abrahamson, OPALS mission manager at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) in Pasadena, California. “We look forward to experimenting with OPALS over the coming months in hopes that our findings will lead to optical communications capabilities for future deep space exploration missions.”

The OPALS Project Office is based at JPL, where the instrument was built.  OPALS arrived to the space station April 20 aboard SpaceX’s Dragon cargo spacecraft and is slated to run for a prime mission of 90 days.

View the “Hello, World!” video transmission and animation of the transmission between OPALS and the ground station, at:

http://youtu.be/1efsA8PQmDA

For more information about OPALS, visit:

http://go.nasa.gov/10MMPDO

For more information about the International Space Station, visit:

http://www.nasa.gov/station

Source: NASA

Amazon May Release Smartphone on June 18th

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Ever since Amazon released the first Kindle Fire tablet,we’ve been curious to know is the company was interested in a Smartphone…
Rumors have shown that a Smartphone is in works for quite a time now,and rumors also have talked about unusual features like a multi camera gesture tracking system and a pseudo-3D eye tracking interface…
Rumors also talked about a launch as soon as this quarter,and that seems to be true as Amazon has revealed its plans for a June 18 event,where the company may well release the phone…

Amazon has also posted a teaser video,that doesn’t shows the device in question,but shows users interacting with it…and there talk of how it “moves with them” and the shorts of them moving there head back and forth to see how the product performs,fits nicely with our expectation of pseudo-3D eye tracking… 

Source: Tech-Met