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  • Researchers testing frugal autonomous car system, aim for $150 price tag (video)

    Researchers testing frugal autonomous car system, aim for $150 price tag (video)

    Google certainly has pockets deep enough to trick out self-driving cars with any kind of pricey gear, but researchers at the University of Oxford have begun testing a solution that aims to keep things affordable. Currently, the system leverages an array of low-profile stereo cameras and lasers that rings up at about £5,000 (approximately $7,750), but the next goal is to knock the price down to £500, and eventually to a cool £100 (roughly $150). “Really, we do need to solve the engineering challenges of not relying on expensive sensors, but relying on cheap sensors,” Professor Paul Newman told the Telegraph. “But doing some really smart things with those cheap sensor feeds.”

    Rather than a vehicle that acts as a chauffeur at all times, Newman’s vision for the modified Nissan Leaf, dubbed RobotCar, is for it to take control on select occasions. While drivers go about their commute, the system composes a 3D map of the car’s environs and commits it to memory. When the auto identifies a familiar setting and feels confident about its ability to take the reigns, it could let the driver know it’s ready to assume control. Right now, the automobile’s been tested on private roads, but the team behind it is working with the UK’s Department of Transportation to roll it onto public streets. Head past the jump for a glimpse of RobotCar in action.

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    Source: Telegraph, RobotCar UK

  • Apple’s latest 21.5-inch iMac hits the refurb store for $1,099

    Apple's latest 215inch iMac hits the refurb store for $1,099

    It’s a rite of passage of sorts — Apple’s “skinny” iMac has now spent enough time on Earth to be deemed an appropriate addition to the company’s refurb ranks. The base late-2012 configuration, which sports a 21.5-inch 1080p IPS screen, a 2.7GHz quad-core Intel Core i5 processor, 8 gigs of RAM, a 1TB hard drive and that new super-svelte housing can now be had at a $200 discount, priced at $1,099. As with many Apple refurbished products, you likely won’t be the device’s very first owner, but it will arrive in tip-top condition, with a one-year warranty to boot. As always, “supplies are limited,” so if you don’t mind having a second-hand system on your desk, in exchange for a slightly thicker wallet, you best make your way over to the source link to snag your very own discounted machine today.

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    Via: MacRumors

    Source: Apple Store

  • Samsung Series 5 UltraTouch review: a solid, if slightly overpriced, mid-range Ultrabook

    Samsung Series 5 UltraTouch review a solid, if slightly overpriced, midrange Ultrabook

    If you read our latest laptop buyer’s guide, you may have noticed we included a lot of high-end PCs. Which makes sense: we’ve been quite busy reviewing flagship devices since Windows 8 went on sale last fall. We’re talking the best Microsoft’s partners have to offer: twisting screens, dual screens, 8-second boot-up times. That’s been fun, and we’re pretty sure those are the more interesting products to read about, but even so, we decided it’s high time we started reviewing some more mid-range systems — you know, those models that don’t cost $1,200.

    So, in the coming months, you’re going to see us review more of these everyman systems, in addition to those lustworthy flagships. First up: the Samsung Series 5 UltraTouch. We’ll admit, we’re a little tardy here, as this went on sale late last year, but if you’ve never heard of it, it’s basically last year’s Series 5 Ultrabook with a touch panel appended. For the money ($800 and up), you get some modest specs (Core i3 / i5 processors with hybrid storage and a 1,366 x 768 screen), though if our research is correct, those are the same basic specs you’ll find on most competing models. Given that, any display snobs can show themselves the door now, before we even get started. But what if you’ve been looking for a more affordable Windows 8 system? How does Samsung’s entry stack up?

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