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Futurum Weekly – November 12, 2016
by Shelly Kramer | November 12, 2016

Hello Futurum readers. Here’s hoping your weekend is off to a good start.

Beyond politics, there is much going on this week in the world of technology. H1 announced it would build the first commercial hyperloop transportation system from Dubai to Abu Dhabi. Snapchat launched Spectacles and virtual reality is coming to YouTube. These are some of the stories to catch up on in this week’s Futurum weekly.

The first commercial hyperloop transportation system, Hyperloop One, is coming to the United Arab Emirates. The first phase will make it possible to travel the 99 miles between Dubai to Abu Dhabi in a mere 12 minutes. [TechCrunch] [@sarahbuhr]

Snapchat is entering the work of augmented reality (AR) with a new feature called World Lenses. They do exactly what it sounds like: Turn the world you see through the viewfinder into an entirely different scene. [Android Central] [@Ohthatflo

The “first ever cognitive movie trailer” has been created by 20th Century Fox and IBM Research. I wrote about this on the Futurum blog earlier this week in a post about the industries AI is having an early impact in—the entertainment industry is high on the list. This use of AI to develop a movie trailer is just one example of the many ways AI and machine learning techniques are already changing the face of the, check it out and  judge the merits of the result yourself. [Futurum] [@ShellyKramer]

Virtual reality is coming to YouTube. YouTube is making major strides to keep up with the other players in the tech space, and adding virtual reality capabilities to the platform is an important step. Want to check it out? You’ll need the Daydream View headset and controller, as well as a Daydream-ready phone like the new Pixel series. If you do, I’d love for you to let us know what you thought about the experience. [Digital Trends] [@kwouk

Spectacles, video-recording sunglasses from Snapchat parent company Snap, went on sale this past week through a yellow pop-up vending machine near the company’s original headquarters in Venice, California. Are Spectacles worthy of your attention? [The Verge] [@bcbishop]  

Disney is going all in with drones as the centerpiece of a new nighttime spectacular just in time for the holidays. The use of drones has been a priority of the entertainment giant for awhile and the advancement in autonomous technology has made it possible. [Digital Trends] [Trevor Mogg]  

The once promising market for wearables is cooling. Recent reports of Fitbit’s and Apple Watch sales numbers declining add to the narrative that wearables will soon be dead. Based on the number of wearables I see on the wrists around me, I’d say that’s as likely due to market saturation as it is to other factors. While there’s some truth to that, next generation devices could change that soon. I routinely enjoy The Gadget Lab Podcast from Wired, and in this episode David and Michael discuss wearables and what might be in store for the future. Well worth a listen. [Wired]

Photo Credit: hokorpeter Flickr via Compfight cc

Shelly Kramer
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