A guy walking with in the street with a Lidar backpack

Having breakfast in San Francisco, Fisherman’s Wharf, I found a guy carrying a Lidar sensor backpack:

I asked permission to take some pictures but I did not want to interrupt him because he was working.

After a while I saw him again, apparently it was scanning the area thoroughly.

A Lidar sensor allows any robot (such as an autonomous car for example) to visualize the real world in 360º, with a depth and incredible precision. I speculate that this young man was “mapping” the neighborhood several times to generate a 3D database of the neighborhood.

Autonomous Uber cars, for example, have their own Lidar sensor:

I’ll tell you if I see him again or if I find more information about it.

Shared scooters invade San Francisco

Overnight, San Francisco has been invaded by hundreds of electric scooters for rent, through various Apps, which have surprised the San Franciscans.

Scattered in the middle of the street, literally, waiting for anyone passing by to see them, download an app and start using from $1 Usd.

What problem they solve?

Rent a scooter quickly and cheap when you need it and leave it anywhere is presented as a solution to the problem of urban transport. The option to buy a skate on property is not far-fetched, they are not expensive (about $400 Usd), but having to load it everywhere can be a pain. Rent it, use it and leave it anywhere is a very attractive option that has succeed.

Conflicts

Bird, LimeBike and Spin are the pioneer companies in this new market, which has caused both fans and detractors at the same time. Citizens have complained of users skidding on the sidewalk at full speed and scooters lying in the middle of the street blocking the way. The City Council has asked you to cease your activity of Immediately, but they continue to operate and study how to solve the different problems they are causing.

My Electric Scooter

It seems that all companies will end up using the same model of Xiaomi brand scooter. Bird and Spin are already using it and LimeBike is going to join soon, according to TechCrunch .

I’m curious to see how all this ends.

Users usually don’t read

When I started making websites in 2003 I realized that users usually don’t read.

Even when you give them the most obvious instructions, users skip and go ahead for what they think will work.

Not only in online design, but in real life you find users doing the opposite as you tell them to do, so better give them the most obvious option without any reading.

For example, this sign was totally ignored in a local restaurant:

So better give them only options that you want them to go ahead.

 

No, Bitcoin can’t be used to buy normal things

Many people talk about Bitcoin as the future currency, like dollars or euros, but using Bitcoin to try to buy things like money is not a good idea.

Not only because the Bitcoin price is changing every second, but because the transfer fees.

Bitcoins fees for transactions are worse than people think.

Bitcoin transactions are processed by miners, the ones who help transactions to be confirmed. They choose to process first transactions with the highest fee, so if you want to pay less than 4 USD for your transaction to be confirmed, you have to wait between 10 to 30 minutes… and the problem is getting worse everyday:Source

The fee problem is something avoiding Bitcoin to be used as a normal currency to buy daily things because of the cost in money and time.

Even some companies, like Steam, are already dropping from accepting Bitcoin as a currency.

Don’t believe everything online: The story of Muzo

Internet is wonderful, we can learn and discover many things in it … but we must approach with a critical spirit, especially when there is money involved.

As an example I want to show you Muzo, a device that has achieved more than one and a half million dollars ($ 1,500,000 USD) in two crowdfunding campaigns, one on Kickstarter and the other on Indiegogo.

The project promises a device capable of isolating environmental noise to allow us to enjoy silence.

 

The problem? That seems too nice to be true.

And usually when something is too nice to be true, it is usually not true.

Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence … but this has not stopped thousands of people from giving their money to Muzo.

Will they surprise us with a technology never seen before?

What do you think about it?