Dhaka, Aug 10 (UNB) - Google has been the largest search engine across the world since the past two decades and though the company has expanded its business to other areas of technology, it continues to be the go-to search engine for internet users. However, have you ever wondered what would happen if your favorite search engine fails to provide you the search result that you are looking for? The technology giant has launched Question Hub to address such a scenario, reports The Indian Express.
Through Question Hub, internet users can tell Google when they cannot find the particular content which they are looking for and it will collect these unanswered queries. For example, if a user is searching for ‘How many revolutions does Chandrayaan 2 make around the Earth?’ Google will sort this question by its topic (Science), and then provide it to the publishers, who can then use these insights and create richer, better content for their readers and viewers.
Google, in its blog, has said that it is launching the beta version of Question Hub today after several months of testing with journalists and bloggers. It further said Question Hub is now available in India, Indonesia, and Nigeria, in languages like English, Hindi, and Bahasa Indonesia. Google also plans to add more languages and countries in the future.
In order to access Question Hub, publishers will be required to link their account to verified properties in the search console. Those publishers who do not have a search console account, Google says that there are other options available. Once a publisher has created an account, they can explore topics which are relevant to their field of work either by searching for specific keywords or by browsing the categories (example Beauty and Fitness). Once a topic is added, they will be able to view the unanswered questions which are asked by real people on the internet.
Apart from this, Google has off late been updating some of its popular apps in India. The company had only last week added two new features to the Files app. It has also brought in a new SMS feature in the Google Pay app.
Dhaka, Aug 10 (UNB) - Tencent Games recently launched a watered-down version of its popular PUBG Mobile game, dubbed PUBG Mobile Lite. After the India launch, the Lite version of the game crossed over 10 million downloads on the Google Play Store, reports The Indin Express.
“India as a market is quite diverse in terms of smartphone penetration. While PUBG MOBILE is a huge success in India, we have seen a very positive initial response towards PUBG MOBILE LITE due the game being playable on entry-level smartphones. We’re hopeful that the gaming community will continue to show the same enthusiasm going forward,” the PUBG Mobile team said in an email to the indianexpress.com.
PUBG Mobile Lite supports smartphones with lower-end specifications It can run on devices with less than 2GB of RAM, which would explain why more India users would have tried it out.
The team also revealed that PUBG Mobile Lite needs a minimum of 768MB RAM to run smoothly. This means even users with less than 1GB RAM can try out the game. But the team did not specify minimum processor requirements needed to run the game.
With PUBG Mobile Lite, there is just one Erangel map and the layout is different from the main PUBG Mobile game. The latter has several maps. The PUBG Team explained that the reason for just one map on the Lite version is that it has been optimised to promote faster gameplay. Further there are new areas and buildings to keep players engaged.
The PUBG Mobile Team also said they will continue to listen to user feedback, even with the Lite version of the game in order improve the users experience with updates.
While PUBG Mobile and PUBG Mobile Lite have similar gameplay, the team also shared some key tips and tricks that players can use in new version of the game. The first tip would be to use the new auxiliary aim assist, which makes aiming simpler even in areas with weak network conditions.
Another PUBG Mobile Lite exclusive feature is Bullet Trail Adjustment, which increases the bullet speed and provides users with a no-bullet drop effect, thus giving a clearer shot that deals out heavy damage.
Weapon Recoil Suppression is another mechanism that is available only on the Lite version of the game. It suppresses the weapon recoil to a certain amount, which facilitates game-control and makes for a better experience in weak networks and while using scopes.
The team also said that the players should make use of the new RPG (Rocket launcher), which can be found in airdrops and is useful in destroying a complete squad.
San Francisco, Aug 10 (AP/UNB) — Facebook is reportedly in talks with news publishers to offer "millions of dollars" for the rights to publish their material on its site. The move follows years of criticism over its growing monopolization of online advertising to the detriment of the struggling news industry.
The Wall Street Journal reported Thursday that Facebook representatives had told news executives that they'd pay as much as $3 million a year to license stories, headlines and other material. Facebook declined to comment but confirmed that the company is working on launching a "news tab" for its service this fall. Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg began talking about a news section on the service in April.
A person familiar with the matter confirmed that Facebook has approached News Corp. about paying to license Wall Street Journal stories. The person requested anonymity because they were not authorized to speak publicly about the matter.
The Journal report was not clear as to whether Facebook was offering $3 million to individual publishers or in total to all news organizations.
Many in the news industry have long blamed Facebook and Google for using their content for free while the social network slurped up the majority of digital ad dollars, imperiling the news industry. A bipartisan bill introduced in Congress this year would grant an antitrust exemption to news companies, letting them band together to negotiate payments from the big tech platforms.
The Washington Post, which was also named in the report as a company Facebook approached, declined to comment. The Walt Disney Co., which owns ABC, did not immediately respond to a message for comment.
Beijing, Aug 9 (AP/UNB) — Huawei on Friday unveiled a smartphone operating system that it said can replace Google's Android, adding to the Chinese tech giant's efforts to insulate itself against U.S. sanctions.
The announcement of HarmonyOS highlights the growing ability of Huawei, the No. 2 global smartphone brand and biggest maker of network gear for phone carriers, to create technology and reduce its reliance on American vendors.
U.S. curbs imposed in May threatened Huawei's smartphone sales by limiting access to Android and blocking Google, a unit of Alphabet Inc., from supporting music and other services based on the system.
Huawei Technologies Ltd. wants to keep using Android, Richard Yu, CEO of its consumer device unit, said at a conference for software developers in the southern city of Dongguan.
"However, if we cannot use it in the future we can immediately switch to HarmonyOS," Yu said. He said that could be done in as little as two days if needed.
Huawei, China's first global tech brand, is at the center of a battle between Washington and Beijing over the ruling Communist Party's ambitions to develop companies that can compete in robotics and other fields.
The Trump administration says Beijing's efforts are based on stealing or pressuring companies to hand over technology. Washington and other trading partners say the Chinese campaign violates its free-trade obligations.
Washington has labeled Huawei a security threat, an accusation the company denies. Some officials also see the rise of Huawei and other Chinese tech competitors as a potential threat to U.S. industrial leadership.
Huawei spends about $12 billion a year on U.S. semiconductor chips and other components. The company said the U.S. export curbs might cut its projected sales by $30 billion over two years.
Since then, authorities have said vendors will be allowed to supply technology that is available from other sources. That came after American technology suppliers warned they would be hurt by the loss of one of their biggest customers.
Huawei also has developed its own chipsets for low-end smartphones and servers, though it still needs U.S. vendors for its most advanced products.
Yu said Huawei's first smartphone using HarmonyOS would be released Saturday under its Honor brand.
Huawei, headquartered in the southern city of Shenzhen, near Hong Kong, reported earlier its smartphone shipments rose 24% in the first half of 2019 over a year ago to 118 million.
"We could have done better, but due to the challenges we face in the international market, our shipments dropped a bit," Yu said.
Huawei reported that sales in the six months through June rose 23.2% over a year earlier to 401.3 billion yuan ($58.3 billion). That was up from 2018 growth of 19.5%, but Chairman Liang Hua warned Huawei will "face difficulties" in the second half.
Liang said then that Huawei was reviewing its product lineup to make sure it could fill orders without U.S. components if necessary.
On Friday, Yu said HarmonyOS is designed to operate on PCs and tablet computers as well as smartphones, allowing users to integrate music and other functions across multiple devices.
HarmonyOS will be open source to allow outside developers to contribute to its development, Yu said.
"We want to build a global operating system, so it will not be used by Huawei alone," he said.
Washington, Aug 2 (Xinhua/UNB) -- Scientists in the United States developed a kind of remotely-controlled soft robots that can move to a targeted position and be reconfigured into new shapes, revealing potential applications in biotechnology and aerospace.
The study published on Friday in the journal Science Advances described the soft robots made of a polymer embedded with magnetic iron microparticles, and controlled by light and magnetic fields.
"We can get it to hold a given shape; we can then return the robot to its original shape or further modify its movement; and we can do this repeatedly," said the paper's corresponding author Joe Tracy, professor of materials science and engineering at North Carolina State University.
The researchers used light from a light-emitting diode (LED) to heat up the material that is relatively stiff under normal conditions, and the polymer became pliable. Then, they demonstrated that the robot's shape can be remotely controlled by applying a magnetic field.
After the robot took a desired shape, the researchers removed the LED light, and then the robot resumed the original stiffness, locking the shape in place.
In an experimental test, the researchers used the soft robot as a "grabber" for lifting and transporting objects. Also, it can be folded into "flowers" with petals that bend in different directions.
In addition, the researchers developed a computational model to fine-tune the robot's shape, polymer thickness, and the size and direction of the required magnetic field, which helps make a prototype design to accomplish a specific task.
Now, they are working to engineer polymers that respond at different temperatures in order to meet the needs of specific applications.