Try out RAF SkyTech Augmented Reality Screens at Insomnia 55

Insomnia Gaming Festival announced that the RAF will be present at Insomnia 55 and demonstrate some of their really cool technology. At Insomnia 55 you’ll be able to try out the RAF’s augmented reality screens and play a campaign challenge with five missions to complete.

For those who don’t know who RAF is, they are the Royal Air Force and is United Kingdom’s aerial warfare force. They were founded towards the end of World War One on the first of April 1918 and is thereby the oldest independent air force in the world.

This is without a doubt a clever recruiting trip for the RAF, but at the same time it gives normal gamers the ability to try out some of the really advanced training gear that the RAF has at their disposal. Gamers have trained themselves to react in split seconds while they distinguish between friend and foe. They got endurance for long sessions without breaks and have a visual recognition for detail that most other people don’t have. As such it’s just natural for the RAF to take a peek  at Insomnia for new talent. A win-win situation in my opinion.

Will you be heading to Insomnia 55 and if so, will you be trying out the RAF SkyTech?

Secret Service Agencies Wanted to Put Malware on Your Android Phones

I don’t think it will be a shock to hear about yet another way government agencies try to spy on people, but they are getting bolder day after day it seems. A recently leaked document by Edward Snowden, dubbed IRRITANT HORN, reveals how agencies from the United States, United Kingdom, Canada, New Zealand and Australia wanted to infect your smartphones through Google and Samsung App Stores.

The agencies wanted to use their XKEYSCORE system to trim Internet traffic in order to find smartphone data that goes to and from the Google and Samsung stores. With the latter, they would have performed a man-in-the-middle attack to get your smartphone thinking it was downloading something from the store, but instead it would have downloaded malicious software that would track and record your data.

The document apparently reveals more than just hacking and infecting smartphones. The agencies were also planning to send “selective misinformation” to targeted handsets. This means that the agencies wanted to control and alter more than just a few emails or messages, but rather use the system to control events from underneath the curtain.

Up until now, Google made no comment regarding this matter, while Samsung decided not to comment “at this time”.

Thank you The Intercept for providing us with this information

The UK Plans to Build its First Spaceport by 2018

The United Kingdom is said to have planned its first spaceport to be built and be up-and-running by 2018, while Virgin Galactic is preparing to become the first company launching space-tourism flights from within the country.

The British government is said to have planned an official announcement this Tuesday, where it will go into detail regarding the eight possible locations for the spaceport. The Guardian states that amongst the rumored locations include the north of Scotland, Norfolk, Bristol and Outer Hebrides.

“We have worked out the regulatory regime we need to launch spaceships in Britain and assessed what kind of aviation checks will have to be imposed when we put craft into space,” UK science minister David Willetts tells the Guardian. “In the wake of that work we have now created a shortlist of locations for the first British spaceport.”

The news does not come as a surprise, since the United Kingdom’s space sector is now worth over £11 billion / $18,8 billion, having the government aiming at raising it to around £40 billion by the end of 2030. In terms of flights, it is said that both commercial satellites and manned mission will be able to launch from the spaceport, with companies such as Virgin Galactic and XCOR Aerospace already lining up as potential users.

Commercial space tourism is said to have been rapidly growing, having the UK jumping in at a key moment. Virgin Galactic is stated to have planned its first flight later this year, taking off from a base in New Mexico. In addition to the company’s flight schedule, Richard Branson, the founder of Virgin Galactic, is reported to have already identified at least one location in the UK suitable for launching space flights in the near future.

Thank you The Verge for providing us with this information
Image courtesy of Fox News

Unmanned Transport Pods To Be Deployed In Milton Keynes, UK

Milton Keynes (UK) is planning a new futuristic approach in terms of transportation. The town is preparing to replace the existing old and noisy buses with a fleet of 100 ULTra PRT transport pods. Each pod has a capacity of 2 passengers plus room for luggage and travels at a speed of 12 miles per hour. As per the initial plan, pods will carry passengers between downtown area, train station and business district. Fares are estimated to be £2 per trip and pedestrians will have to use a smartphone app to hail a pod.

The pods are driven by computers but can be controlled by passengers in case of any problem. A similar system is already in place at Heathrow airport in London and is being used for shuttling passengers from terminal to terminal. The system is operational since 2011 and there have been no major incidents so far.

With an estimated budget of £65 million, the pilot project would require laying down special roadway and charging stations for the pods. The special roadway would contain safety bumpers to separate the pods from regular traffic and charging stations would be set up en route. The current plan is to have the system up and running by 2015 and fully operational by 2017.

If everything goes well and the project succeeds, the idea is to have pods no longer run on restricted lanes, paving the way for driverless public transport systems and personal vehicles.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C7OxvLuK83g[/youtube]

Thank you Tech Spot for providing us with this information
Image and video courtesy of Tech Spot

Amazon Starts To Take Pre-Orders For New Kindle Fire Tablets In Canada And The UK

Amazon has officially begun accepting pre-orders for their next-generation Kindle Fire tablets in Canada and the UK. The tablets saw a limited launch last month, but now is primed to take on and capture more markets, starting with these two (for now).

The new Kindle Fire HD starter is a 7″ screen sized tablet having a resolution of 1280×800 pixels (the 8.9″ model comes with a 1920×1080 pixels resolution to its display), a Dual-Core 1.5 GHz CPU, Dual Stereo with Dolby Audio enhancement and comes with a storage of either 8 or 16 GB (or between 16 or 32 GB for the 8.9″ model). What the Kindle Fire HD 8.9″ has compared to the 7″ model is a front-facing HD camera and a dual-antenna (MIMO) Wi-Fi.

The HDX models have basically the same specs as the HD 8.9″ model, but with a Quad-Core 2.2 GHz CPU, and added an option for 64 GB storage. However, the HDX 8.9″ is the only Kindle Fire to have a 8-megapixel rear-facing camera, great for capturing those important moments in your life.

While the Kindle Fire HD has been priced at £119 (UK) and $149 (Canada), the HDX version of the same 7-inch Kindle is priced at £199 (UK) and $254 (Canada). Meanwhile, you can pre-order the 8.9-inch Kindle Fire HDX for £229 (UK) and $284 (Canada).

Thank you NextPowerUp for providing us with this information.

Image courtesy of NextPowerUp.