Briefly informed: Telekom, robotaxis, bots, moon landers
Telekom boss threatens to shift investments abroad
Telekom boss Tim Höttges has warned federal politicians against choking off the investments urgently needed for digitization with wrong rules. “If the general conditions do not change, we will see ourselves forced to make even greater use of our opportunities abroad, particularly in the USA,” said the CEO in Bonn on Thursday. In the US, revenue per customer in the telecommunications industry is three times higher than in Germany. According to Höttges, investments here are hardly worthwhile, also because consumer prices are low. One still invests “patriotically”, said Höttges with regard to domestic investments. “But we can only do that because we have the balance sheet of our American business behind us – we wouldn’t be able to invest as much if we didn’t have the enormous cash flow and enormous financial strength from the USA.”
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Robotaxis: Big win for Waymo and Cruise in San Francisco
Despite strong opposition from city officials and after a heated debate between supporters and opponents of the plan, the California regulator has allowed Waymo and Cruise to operate 24-hour, 24-hour, paid autonomous taxis throughout San Francisco. The California Public Utilities Commission announced on Thursday. Previously, the robotaxis were only allowed to drive at certain times in some parts of the city or had to be offered free of charge without a security guard on board. With three votes to one, the commission now voted for the big expansion and gave both companies and autonomous vehicles a big victory, as US media explain.
Bots are almost always faster than humans at solving captchas
Humans are now almost always slower when solving captchas than automated bots, which are supposed to fail at these puzzles. This is the partial result of an analysis of the speed at which people solve modern captchas. To do this, a research group first identified the currently most popular Captcha types and then had 1,400 people each solve ten tasks. They found out that people need an average of 3.6 to 42.7 seconds to solve a modern Captcha. Further analysis shows that bots are significantly faster on almost all types and are far more correct on all of them. This suggests that the unpopular technology does not fulfill its actual purpose at all.
First Russian lunar lander launched in almost 50 years
Russia has sent a lander to the moon for the first time in almost 50 years. On the night of Friday, “Luna 25” started from the new Vostotschny spaceport in the far east of the country. Four and a half days are now planned for the flight to the earth satellite, on August 21 the lander should touch down softly on the moon. Also because of technical problems, this country’s first moon landing mission had been postponed for years since 1976.
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