Meanwhile in … Tel Aviv, crosswalk lights are saving cellphone zombies.
And in San Francisco, the U. S. Department of Energy announced the production of a $500 million supercomputer.
In Tel Aviv, Israel, new crosswalk lights might help save “cellphone zombies.” The city has begun installing ground-level LED strips at a major intersection. The bright visual cues are designed to help pedestrians pay attention to traffic instead of their phones. The light strips switch from red to green, signaling when to stop and go. Similar crosswalks have been introduced in Singapore, Australia, and Germany. (Reuters)
In San Francisco, the U. S. Department of Energy announced the production of a $500 million supercomputer. The department hopes to compete with China in the race to advance computer technology. Government supercomputers have been used to design weapons and break code; this one will help advance scientific research. The new supercomputer, called Aurora, is expected to be the first American machine to meet “exascale” performance, capable of completing more than a quintillion calculations per second. Aurora is scheduled to be ready in 2021, and is in the running against three systems in China that are slated for completion by 2020. (The New York Times)
In Tokyo, Toyota is planning a new moon rover. The Japanese Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) announced it would land astronauts on the moon by the 2030s, and it hopes to have help from the car company. Preliminary designs for the mission’s manned vehicle include fuel cells that emit only water. (Toyota currently uses similar technology in a line of hydrogen-powered cars, available for purchase exclusively in Japan.) The rover will have a range of 6,000 miles to explore the moon’s surface, and its pressurized interior means occupants won’t have to wear spacesuits when they’re inside. (Toyota)