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This computer mimics the way a human brain completes tasks

The Kashmir Monitor

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A team of US researchers has developed an “artificial synapse” that does not process information like a digital computer but rather mimics the way human brain completes tasks. The discovery can lead to energy-efficient AI devices that would revolutionise our lives, said the team from University of Pittsburgh.
“The analog nature and massive parallelism of the brain are partly why humans can outperform even the most powerful computers when it comes to higher order cognitive functions such as voice recognition or pattern recognition in complex and varied data sets,” explained Dr Feng Xiong, Assistant Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering.
An emerging field called “neuromorphic computing” focuses on the design of computational hardware inspired by human brain. Dr Xiong and his team built graphene-based “artificial synapses” in a 2D honeycomb configuration of carbon atoms. Graphene’s conductive properties allowed the researchers to finely tune its electrical conductance. The graphene synapse demonstrated excellent energy efficiency just like biological synapses, said the study published in the journal Advanced Materials.
In the recent resurgence of AI, computers can replicate the brain in certain ways but it takes about a dozen digital devices to mimic one analog synapse. The human brain has hundreds of trillions of synapses for transmitting information, so building a brain with digital devices is seemingly impossible, or at the very least, not scalable. Xiong Lab’s approach provides a possible route for the hardware implementation of large-scale artificial neural networks. The graphene-based neural networks can be employed in flexible and wearable electronics to enable computation at the “edge of the Internet” – places where computing devices such as sensors make contact with the physical world.
“By empowering even a rudimentary level of intelligence in wearable electronics and sensors, we can track our health with smart sensors, provide preventive care and timely diagnostics, monitor plants growth and identify possible pest issues, and regulate and optimize the manufacturing process,” Dr Xiong explained.
The development of an artificial brain that functions like the analog human brain still requires a number of breakthroughs, said researchers. There is a need to find the right configurations to optimise these new “artificial synapses”. Despite the challenges, Dr Xiong said he’s optimistic about the direction they’re headed. “We are excited about this progress since it can potentially lead to the energy-efficient, hardware implementation of neuromorphic computing, which is currently carried out in power-intensive GPU clusters,” he noted.


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Vivo V15 With 32-Megapixel Pop-Up Selfie Camera, Triple Rear Cameras Launched

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Vivo V15 has arrived in the Indian market to join the already available V15 Pro in the Chinese smartphone maker’s high-end smartphone lineup. Vivo on Friday officially announced the launch of V15 in the country and stated that the phone will be listed for pre-orders starting next week. Vivo V15 was originally introduced in the South-East Asian markets earlier this month. The phone differs from the Vivo V15 Pro in a number of aspects, including the screen size, triple rear camera setup, battery size, and the overall dimensions.

Vivo V15 price in India, launch offers

Vivo V15 price in India has been set at Rs. 23,990 and the phone will be offered in Frozen Black, Glamour Red, and Royal Blue colours. Vivo is only offering one variant of the phone in the country with 6GB of RAM and 64GB of inbuilt storage. According to the company, the Vivo V15 will be available for pre-orders starting Monday, March 25, whereas the actual availability will start April 1. The phone will be sold via Vivo India e-store, Amazon.in, Flipkart, Paytm Mall, Tata CLiQ, and all offline channels.

 

In terms of the launch offers, the Vivo V15 buyers will get free one-time screen replacement, up to 15 months no-cost EMI offers, extra exchange value of Rs. 2,000, Rs. 1,000 loyalty benefit over the exchange value, benefits worth Rs. 10,000 from Reliance Jio (including up to 3.3TB data and the Jio Vivo Cricket Offer), and a number of offers from different banks, including 5 percent cashback on SBI credit/ debit cards as well as on SBI credit card EMI transactions.

Vivo V15 specifications

The dual-SIM (Nano) Vivo V15 sports a 6.53-inch full-HD+ (1080×2340 pixels) InCell FullView Display with a 19.5:9 aspect ratio and Corning Gorilla Glass 5 protection. Additionally, the Vivo V15 runs Funtouch OS 9 based on Android 9 Pie. The phone is powered by octa-core MediaTek Helio P70 SoC coupled with 6GB of RAM.

On the imaging front, the Vivo V15 packs a triple rear camera setup, which houses a 12-megapixel (dual-pixel) primary sensor with an f/1.78 lens, an 8-megapixel sensor with an f/2.2 lens, and a 5-megapixel sensor with an f/2.4 lens. On the front, the Vivo V15 comes with a pop-up selfie camera setup with a 32-megapixel sensor and an f/2.0 lens. There is 64GB of inbuilt storage on the smartphone, expandable via microSD card (up to 256GB). The phone features a gradient back panel and packs a 4,000mAh battery.

Sensors on board include accelerometer, ambient light sensor, digital compass, gyroscope, and proximity sensor. A fingerprint sensor is seen on the back panel.


Connectivity options include 4G VoLTE, Bluetooth v5.0, Micro-USB (with OTG), GPS/ A-GPS, and 3.5mm headphone jack. The Vivo V15 measures 161.97×75.93×8.54mm and weighs 189.5 grams.

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Opera Browser for Android Brings Free Inbuilt VPN With Unlimited, Log-Free Service

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Opera 51 – the latest stable build of Opera’s mobile browser for Android – has arrived and it brings a very useful new feature in the form of an inbuilt VPN. The updated version of the Opera browser for Android offers a native VPN service that is free to use and does not come with any attached log management condition.


Additionally, there is no use limitation on the usage of Opera’s VPN in terms of duration or data consumption. The new build of Opera browser for Android (version 51) is now available to download for users across the globe.

Opera started testing a free inbuilt VPN in its mobile browser for Android back in February. The feature has now finally been promoted to the app’s stable version and is now available with Opera browser’s version 51. It appears that the updated build is available to download from Google Play in certain regions only, for now.

 

However, you can still try out the new feature by downloading the latest build from APKMirror.

As for the Opera browser’s native VPN, it allows users to choose between Europe, America, and Asia servers. There is also an option called ‘Optimal’ in the VPN settings that automatically selects the best network route depending on the location of users. It appears that enabling the VPN will deactivate Opera browser’s inbuilt data saving feature.

The app’s updated build also comes with the option to deactivate the VPN conditionally, allowing search engines to bring up the most relevant search results depending upon the location of users. Additionally, one can choose to automatically activate the VPN only when a private tab is opened. Opera browser’s inbuilt VPN is a log-free service, which means the information being relayed through the virtual IP and network servers is not collected when users are linked to a public network.

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Amazon Kindle (10th Gen) With Inbuilt Front Light Launched

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A new Amazon Kindle ebook reader has been launched in India. Called the Kindle (10th Gen), this device has a 6-inch display with a built-in front light. The Kindle (10th Gen) is priced at Rs. 7,999. It’s up for pre-orders on Amazon India right now and starts shipping from April 10, 2019. This puts it squarely in between the cheapest Kindle (8th Gen) and the Kindle Paperwhite (10th Gen). The most affordable Kindle costs Rs. 5,999 and it does not have a front light, whereas the Kindle Paperwhite is priced at Rs. 12,999. That means you can’t read books on the device when it’s dark. The new device appears to be an upgraded variant of the cheapest Kindle.

The Kindle (10th Gen) features 4GB storage and supports Wi-Fi connectivity. Of course, you can adjust the brightness of this Kindle too. When reading in well-lit areas we prefer to set the Kindle’s brightness to zero, which effectively switches off the front light. The Kindle (10th Gen) promises a battery life of up to a month on a single charge, which is one of the best features of all Kindle ebook readers.

Available in two colour variants — Black and White — the Kindle (10th Gen) is up for pre-orders now. This device is not waterproof, which is to be expected at this price point. The Kindle (10th Gen) weighs 174g and a 6-inch display with a resolution of 167 pixels per inch. This is lower than the 300ppi display seen on the Kindle Paperwhite. It also features integration with the Amazon-owned book database website Goodreads, which offers book recommendations based on your taste and allows you to check community reviews for your favourite books.

 

Apart from that it has all standard Kindle features such as Whispersync (sync your progress across Kindle devices and apps), X-Ray (more information on important things in the book), and Smart Lookup (quickly check word meanings and look up Wikipedia).

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