New developer tools boost Google Assistant’s capabilities

Google has launched new tools for developers which are designed to boost Assistant's capabilities when responding to user requests.

The virtual assistant is regularly found to handle general queries better than its closest competitors, but too often you can think it would just be quicker to do a task yourself. We're still far off from the sci-fi visions of AI assistants like HAL and JARVIS.

Google Assistant, and its rivals, have made large strides in improving areas such...

Google subsidiary Wing is first to use a new drone safety API

A subsidiary of Google called Wing is the first to use a new drone safety API developed by Australia’s Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA).

Project Wing is an autonomous delivery drone service aiming to increase access to goods, reduce traffic congestion in cities, and help ease the CO2 emissions attributable to the transportation of goods.

Wing is also developing a platform enabling unmanned aircraft to navigate around other drones, manned aircraft, and other...

JetBrains report highlights changes in the 2019 programming landscape

JetBrains has released its latest ‘State of Developer Ecosystem’ report which highlights some interesting changes in the programming landscape for 2019.

There’s little change at the very top of the language popularity list – Java is still the most popular, and JavaScript is the most used. Further down the list, we begin seeing interesting changes. Python, in particular, is a clear winner in the report.

Python has entered the top three primary languages...

Google calls for Android Automotive developers ahead of I/O 2019

Google has preemptively announced that Android Automotive (not to be confused with Android Auto) will be opened to developers following I/O 2019.

Android Automotive is Google's platform for infotainment systems which is due to launch with the Polestar 2, an electric vehicle developed by Volvo’s standalone brand.

The platform differs from Android Auto in that Automotive is an OS modelled after Android itself but adapted for cars, whereas the former is an interface...

#MWC19: Achieve immersion through video and VR

A session during MWC highlighted the growing importance of video and VR when it comes to creating immersive experiences.

Anjali Sud, CEO of Vimeo, was part of the session. Vimeo is the largest ad-free video network and its monetisation model allows it to be agnostic, even allowing creators to publish to YouTube.

Sud highlighted that video is becoming ‘the de facto form’ of communication. People expect a constant supply of professional, engaging video...

Google now only wants Android Things on certain ‘things’

Google is scaling back its ambitions for Android Things with the announcement it will “refocus” the platform on just two device types.

Android Things, once known as ‘Project Brillo’, was first announced in 2016. The platform was designed to be an OS for all manner of ‘things’ in the fast-growing IoT (Internet of Things) market.

Given the success Google has found with smart displays and speakers, the firm has decided to focus its efforts on...

Arduino releases IoT Cloud beta for ‘end-to-end’ development

Arduino has announced the launch of its IoT Cloud application platform aimed towards developers, maker hobbyists, and system integrators.

With the help of Arduino IoT Cloud, users are able to develop IoT applications that solve everyday problems which arise in a business environment. Through this platform, the company aims to simplify complex technologies in such a way that it could be used by anyone.

Luca Cipriani, CIO of Arduino, said:

Amazon’s toy car helps developers code self-driving tech

Amazon has unveiled a toy car designed to help developers safely test self-driving code which could be used in full-sized vehicles.

The 1/18th-scale vehicle is called DeepRacer and costs $249 if pre-ordered, or $399 post-release.

DeepRacer wants to help democratise reinforcement learning development. The technique was used by Alphabet’s researchers to create AlphaGo, an AI which defeated the human world champion of the notoriously difficult Go board game.

Created...

Amazon’s new APIs make your front porch smarter

Amazon has continued its smart home offensive with a set of new APIs for developers targeted at making our front porches smarter.

There are three new APIs in total – Doorbell Events Source API, Motion Sensor API, and 2-Way Communication API.

Each of their names gives away their use somewhat, but for a full breakdown:

Doorbell Events Source monitors for a doorbell press so a relevant action can be taken upon user interaction. The Doorbell Event Source endpoint is...