Latest Hosting and Tech News

December 20, 2023 / Technology News

latest tech news

Catch up on this week’s round-up of the latest hosting and tech news. Here’s what we’ve uncovered since our last edition.  

Gift-Wrapping Robot

We’re not entirely sure how the little helpers in Santa’s gift-wrapping shed are going to take this, but they now have competition from the warehouse robot, YuMi, developed by Swedish-Swiss Company ABB. Originally designed for lightweight assembly tasks, the robot has proven to be somewhat of a master at wrapping paper around parcels and then taping it – making it ideal for use in fulfilment centres at this time of year.

Hailed by its creators as the world’s first truly collaborative robot, it can move in a human-like way and has advanced collision control technology, which removes the need for safety barriers. Besides gift-wrapping, YuMi is also able to make paper aeroplanes, serve refreshments and even conduct an orchestra. The Union of North Pole Elves (UNPE) has refused to comment on the development, but Santa assured us that toys will continue to be wrapped in the traditional way.

Winter Fuel

The process of gathering winter fuel hasn’t changed much since the days of Good King Wenceslas;  however, thanks to food recycling company BioteCH4, all that is about to change. This year, the Lincolnshire-based firm is preparing to generate enough energy to fuel 10,000 homes using food waste we threw away last Christmas. Last year, the company received 90,000 more tonnes of food waste than normal over the festive period, from homes, businesses and supermarkets, and this is sufficient to power all those extra homes.

While the country throws away the equivalent of four million Christmas dinners every year, the silver lining is that companies like BioteCH4 convert it into renewable energy and fertiliser using an anaerobic digestor. Here, the waste is broken down using bacteria and biogas is generated as part of the process. This can be used to generate electricity or heating. Biomethane, another bi-product, can be used in the gas grid or even for transport.

Robo-Santa

No, Santa hasn’t retired, but a few hundred miles south of his Lapland home there are changes on the way in how presents are being delivered. This year, instead of a sleigh, those living in areas around Helsinki will see Santa using the HeRo robot for its door-to-door deliveries. The autonomous, elf-driving robot, originally designed for delivering tools to construction sites, will be delivering gifts while helping to tackle the city’s CO2 emissions and alleviate Christmas congestion. Able to offer customers a one-hour delivery window, it provides emission-free delivery for online shopping orders in neighbourhoods without local post offices.

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IoT Gift Risk

If you’ve bought friends and family smart, IoT presents this year, Poole-based cybersecurity outfit, C3IA Solutions, has issued a warning about their potential security risks. As they are internet-connected, devices such as toys, televisions and virtual assistants, together with doorbells, lightbulbs and plugs could leave users vulnerable to cyberattacks and invasions of privacy.

The security company said the influx of cheaper, less secure products from all over the world, makes them vulnerable to hacking. And, as many of these have built-in cameras or microphones, once hacked, the cybercriminals can then use them to invade users’ privacy. The company’s advice to shoppers was to only purchase products from reputable brands that offer extended support periods and regular security updates. Those who receive these types of presents should immediately change the default password (often just 0000 and easily guessed) with a strong, unique alternative. Additionally, they should disable any unnecessary features and check the permissions required to run the apps that often come with these products. Finally, households should also secure their home Wi-Fi networks.

Personal AI Shopper

Stuck on what to buy your family and friends for Christmas? Don’t worry, Google has got it sorted with its new AI-enabled Search Generative Experiences (SGE) tools which it hopes will attract more users to Google Shopping during the festive season.

Thanks to generative AI, Google Shopping can now help you draw up a gift list based on what your recipient’s interests are. Just tell it what your friends, family and colleagues are interested in, and it will show you suitable options. What’s more, it can even generate realistic images of items based on their descriptions, making it easier than ever to find exactly what you’re looking for. When it comes to really tricky presents like clothing, where style and size matter, Google now has a virtual try-on experience. This features over 40 different models with different body shapes, sizes and backgrounds, so when you buy someone an item of clothing, you can have a better understanding of whether it will fit them and suit them before you click buy.

Visit the WHUK website for more news, knowledge base articles, blog posts and information on our wide range of services.

Author

  • Niraj Chhajed

    I'm a SEO and SMM Specialist with a passion for sharing insights on website hosting, development, and technology to help businesses thrive online.

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