Author: Darrell Etherington

Astropad’s Luna Display is the portable display solution you’ve always wanted

TECHCRUNCH Wireless displays have always had too many compromises to be practically useful for me: Lag, image quality, consistency of connection, on and on. But new hardware from Astropad, the maker of the popular iPad app that you can use to turn your tablet into a drawing tablet, has finally convinced me that high quality, easy and reliable wireless external display tech is within reach, and actually set to be available very soon to consumers thanks to a new Kickstarter project. Luna Display is a tiny dongle, not much bigger than the average thumb nail, which plugs into either...

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Snapchat likely to begin scripted original content push by end of year

TECHCRUNCH Snapchat could start offering original scripted content very soon, according to its content lead Nick Bell (via Variety). Snapchat has already done a lot with creators to build shows, including tie-ins for big broadcast hits like The Voice and The Bachelor, and it’s also working with A&E on reality TV via Second Chance, a dating show featuring exes. This isn’t Snapchat’s first foray into scripted content, either. The social app ran a series called Literally Can’t Even back in 2015, which received generally awful critical reviews, inspiring headlines including “We ‘Literally Can’t Even’ with Snapchat’s new original series”...

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Microsatellite radar imaging startup raises $13M to launch new constellation

TECHCRUNCH Finland-based ICEYE is launching a constellation of microsatellites with the aim of helping provide a view form space where traditional imaging cannot, with images delivered within a few hours using a technology that is typically very expensive and difficult to deploy. The startup uses something called synthetic-aperture radar (SAR) to observe Earth even through clouds and in darkness, and it’s gearing up to launch its first three SAR-equipped microsatellites within the next year. ICEYE raised $13 million in new funding to help develop and build its microsatellite constellation, including an $8.5 million round led by Draper Nexus, with...

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Nintendo’s SNES Classic Mini will let you rewind games to tackle tricky spots

TECHCRUNCH The SNES Mini is already causing heaps of FOMO anxiety thanks to pre-orders that are selling out near-instantly, but if any of us DO end up getting our hands on one, the console will have a neat trick up its sleeve for players: In-game rewind. This would allow players to set a suspend point (up to four can bet set at one time per game), and then rewind their gameplay to try to improve their performance. The feature varies how long you can rewind by game, with a sliding scale ranging from a few seconds to a few...

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BAE Systems’ new radiation-hardened computer is ready to serve in space

TECHCRUNCH Aerospace and defense technology company BAE Systems is debuting its next-generation hardened computer designed for space-based use. The new RAD5545 single-board computer beats its predecessor in size, speed and efficiency, BAE says, with “exponential” improvements in all categories – all in a package that’s hardware hardened against ambient radiation, which means it can work reliably in the challenging conditions of outer space for protracted periods. The RAD5545 is designed to be simpler than computers used on previous generations of space-faring vehicles and satellites, since it replaces multiple cards with just one. It can also unlock new capabilities for...

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Apple said to be prepping self-driving employee shuttle service

TECHCRUNCH Apple’s first real-world use of some of the autonomous driving technology it’s working on could be a self-driving shuttle, according to a new report from The New York Times. The Times’ detailed progress (and some missteps) in Apple’s self-driving car ambitions, and one of those which still seems on track is a plan to create an autonomous shuttle to ferry employees from one part of its sprawling campus to another. The report says Apple will use an existing commercial vehicle, equipped with autonomous tech it develops, to both offer service to employees and test its self-driving chops. This...

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Elon Musk shares first photo of SpaceX’s new spacesuit

TECHCRUNCH We now have our first look at the spacesuit SpaceX plans to use for its first crewed missions, courtesy of Elon Musk. The SpaceX CEO shared the image via Instagram, revealing that the picture was not a mockup, but an actual shot of a fully functional suit, which could withstand double the pressure of the vacuum of space. Musk noted that getting the right balance of form and function was challenging, and you can tell from the accents and lines on the suit that it was clearly designed to exude style vs. other spacesuits. It looks svelte and...

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LG to build U.S.-based factory for EV components in Michigan

TECHCRUNCH LG is building a new factory in Detroit suburb Hazel Park to supply electric vehicle components, the company announced on Tuesday. The facility will be a 250,000-square foot manufacturing plant, and should result in almost 300 new jobs, LG says, with a $25 million price tag from the company and $2.9 million in grand money supplied by Michigan over the next four years. LG’s EV components business is important to the electronics maker: during the first half of 2017, vehicle components were worth $1.5 billion in global revenue to LG, which is up 43 percent from last year....

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