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Adaptive Metalen: A Powerful Replica of The Human Eye

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Adaptive Metalen: A Powerful Replica of The Human Eye

Following the contemporary progress in meta-surfaces, a group of researchers from Harvard SEAS (School of Engineering and Applied Science) has leveraged upon this development to produce a photoelectric artificial ‘eye’. Seeing that focus, astigmatisms and image shift are core constituents of advanced optical systems.

Alan She/ Harvard SEAS

These Scientists were able to establish that such optical components as lenses could administer a better performance if reassembled into – a silicon metalen mounted on an ultra-slim polymer film. Termed the “Adaptive Eye” – this 30 micrometers-thick metalen, just like the human eyes automatically adjust its focus in real-time.

In addition to regulating focus, the silicon nanostructure is designed with more powerful features than the human eyes such as image shift and astigmatism. Achieving an advanced optical zoom, transfixing autofocus, and better image stabilization.

The ‘Metalen Eye’ is expected to conveniently succeed in the sphere of optical lens developments used in eyeglasses, cameras, cell phones, microscopes, telescopes and other wearable technologies such as augmented and virtual reality devices.

According to one of the Researchers – Federico Capasso, a condition of merging both the semiconductor and lens manufacturing industries had to be met, in order to see to its success.

In his words, he stated that;

“This research provides the possibility of unifying two industries, semiconductor manufacturing, and lens-making, whereby the same technology used to make computer chips will be used to make metasurface-based optical components, such as lenses.”

Originally initiated by Researcher Alan She – of the Harvard SEAS, while been fully endorsed by the National Science Foundation and the Air Force Office of Scientific Research. The ideas behind this neoteric development date back to the mid-1990s, a time at which the wavelength of light was more sparse than the sizes of the semiconductors manufactured.

Subsequently, these researchers had to come up with an algorithm to reduce the file size to ensure it is compatible with the current technology used for integrated circuits.

However, the development of the ‘Metalen Eye’ revolves majorly around the idiosyncrasies of present-day technological advancement such as AI, Machine-learning and Deep-learning fused together with nanotechnology. Having that this investigation was jointly conducted at the Center for Nanoscale Systems (CNS).

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Elon Musk’s SpaceX Project Successfully Debuts NASA’s Launch into Space

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Elon Musk’s SpaceX Project Successfully Debuts NASA’s Launch into Space
Photo Credit: SpaceX

SpaceX– Elon Musk’s aerospace company, just launched two NASA astronauts into space. SpaceX is a privately owned American aeronautic manufacturing and space exploration technologies corporation, founded sometime in 2002 with the primary intention of revolutionizing space technology and promoting the emigration to mars through reduced space transportation cost. SpaceX group, an enterprise spearheaded by one of the most innovative minds of our times, has introduced a new age of human spaceflight in the United States. The project codenamed ‘Crew Dragon Mission’ was the second attempt by the company to launch spacemen into the orbit, over the last two decades – as the first attempt from three days ago was canceled a few minutes before take-off due to stormy weather.

This most recent development is part of NASA’s Artemis program. It comes as a relish to NASA and SpaceX since the automated spacecraft manufacturer was sanctioned by NASA barely two weeks ago to develop a lunar optimized Starship that would transport its crew between the lunar orbit and the surface of the moon. The two astronauts involved in this record-breaking venture are; Bob Behnken and Doug Hurley – both of whom are NASA veteran space travelers.

NASA astronauts Doug and Bob lifted off circa 15:22 UTC on Saturday, 30 May 2020, from Kennedy Space Center on Merritt Island, Florida – which happens to be the same launch pad used to send the Apollo astronauts to the moon fifty years ago. Notably, the launch of the SpaceX aero flights – Falcon 9 rocket and Dragon crew capsule, from Florida’s Kennedy Space Center to the International Space Station (ISS) marks the first time in 9 years since a spacecraft has been launched from American soil and also the first time a private company has done it.

The NASA astronauts have successfully arrived at the International Space Station. In attendance to witness the event in Florida was President Donald Trump, Vice President Mike Pence, and the SLOTUS – Karen Pence of the United States of America.

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Apple Acquires AI Startup to Improve Siri

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Apple Acquires AI Startup to Improve Siri

In the race for new and improved virtual assistance services, Apple is once again, yet to take the lead through its acquisition of the Ontario-based machine learning startup – Inductiv. The brains behind Inductiv include professors from Stanford University, the University of Wisconsin, and the University of Waterloo – in the persons of Christopher Ré, Theodoros Rekatsinas, and Ihab Ilyas. This band of Engineering professors is the latest supplement to Apple’s development team in addition to the company’s myriad of Engineers from Silicon Valley, slated to work on the Siri among other things. Apparently, this team of professors would be working on the AI, Machine learning, and data science section of the company – an important aspect of Apple’s deep learning strategy. In a statement provided by Apple’s spokesperson, the deal has been sealed and stamped. The representative further confirmed the deal with a rather unapologetic tune, asserting that it;

“buys smaller technology companies from time to time and we generally do not discuss our purpose or plans.” 

The idea of virtual assistance is to make life a lot easier as these software agents make it easiest to navigate between the software and programs of an operating system. Inductiv has been focused on developing technologies that utilize machine learning to automate a hassle-free procedure of identifying and correcting erratic datasets in the past. Evidently, having authentic data is key to ensuring a seamless and robust AI functionality which is why AI and data science are essential to a machine learning ecosystem. Through deep Learning and AI, these virtual assistive technologies could be programmed to automate certain processes that would normally require human interaction. By this, you can make your assistant do your phone’s tasks for you – such as make your calls, send important emails, and even entertain you during your leisure time, while you just sit back and relax. 

Although, Apple’s senior vice president of Machine Learning and AI Strategy – John Giannandrea, has indicated the company’s interest to work on a few improvements with regards to Siri and other AI-powered products from the company. However, the iPhone maker has drastically slacked in the niche of virtual assistance in recent times. Giving way for other competitors such as Microsoft’s Cortana, Google Home, and Amazon Alexa. According to research conducted a couple of years ago by Forbes, Siri ranked number 4 on the top 10 list of virtual assisting technologies for mobile and still is at present.

Apparently, this comes as a huge blow on the overall image of Apple’s technological growth, given that Siri was the pioneer software in the sphere of voice-controlled assistive technology. Since it provided the prototype from which other virtual assisting apps borrowed their ideas. Little wonder why Apple has been acquiring a host of AI-related startup companies in most recent times including NextVR,  Xnor.ai, Deep Fusion, Tuplejump, Laserlike, Voysis, Turi, and Perceptio.

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