Technobyte

Technobyte: Flying cars and audio 'photoshop' on the cards

Within the next decade, Uber aims to launch a network of flying cars that will turn a two-hour road trip into a 15-minute flight.

And it claims that flying over the traffic will cost substantially less than a traditional Uber ride does now. A promise to bring such a revolution to the way we travel might have been met with scepticism had it not come from a company that has been at the forefront of other big changes.

Uber has already transformed urban and even intercity travel with its ride-hailing app. It is also taking the lead in the push for self-driving cars, introducing autonomous vehicles in one American city and aiming to make them the norm before long.

www.economist.com

Facebook-owned messaging app WhatsApp is experimenting with a new Status feature that lets users share mood-setting pictures and videos overlaid with other custom elements such as emoji, with the content disappearing 24 hours after it’s shared — so basically a copy of Snapchat Stories.

techcrunch.com

Social media is an important source of news for many Americans. But the health stories that are most popular may also be the least accurate, a study of Facebook posts about Zika virus finds.

In May and June 2016, a period of heavy media coverage of the Zika virus epidemic spreading in the Americas, about four out of five popular posts on Facebook about Zika contained accurate information, researchers found.

But those containing inaccurate information or conspiracy theories were far more popular on the social networking website.

www.reuters.com

Software capable of synthesizing and altering the human voice has been around for some time.

But Adobe has taken the technology to the next level with a scarily accurate audio tool that quickly puts anyone’s speech in an editable format.

Project VoCo, unveiled at the annual IMAX event, takes an audio sample and generates a transcript you can easily edit to make the speaker say whatever you want simply by cutting, pasting, and adding words.

As The Next Web notes, it’s “basically Photoshop for audio.” “The algorithm does the rest and makes it sound like the original speaker said those words,” Adobe said in a statement.

futurism.com

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