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This Week In Tech News | June 28

this week in tech june 28

As another week comes to an end, AI continues to be a hot topic in the tech scene and it doesn’t look like that will change any time soon as more and more companies roll out AI software and climate specialists voice concerns about the effects of AI on the environment.

With that, let’s dive into some of this week’s tech news stories, where you’ll definitely be seeing mentions of AI.

Engineers at the University of Tokyo have managed to create lab-grown skin from human cells that is designed to cover robot faces. This lab-engineered skin can be adhered to any surface shape since it is designed to be extremely flexible, and with the addition of a collagen gel, the skin can bind to complex structures in a way that resembles ligaments. The engineers who developed this technique are continuing to work on their findings to make it more human-like.

(–Source: Popular Science
Read More: Lab-grown, self-healing human skin designed to cover robot faces | Popular Science (popsci.com) ) 

 TikTok recently launched a new photo-sharing social app called Whee in an attempt to rival Instagram with Instagram-like features including photo filters, comments, and messaging. Haven’t heard about this? That’s because the app has no traction with little-to-no app downloads or advertising. So far, the app only has a combined 23,000 downloads between iOS and Android devices, and with TikTok still facing a potential ban in the US, Whee is not currently having a marketing push within the states. However, the launch of Whee could be an attempt from ByteDance, TikTok’s parent company, to keep a presence in the US if the TikTok ban does push through despite the company’s current legal action against the US government.

(–Source: TechCrunch
Read More: TikTok’s Instagram rival, Whee, has no traction | TechCrunch )

Mark Zuckerberg, Meta CEO, wants to help creators and small businesses on Instagram engage with their fans and customers, even if they don’t have time to regularly respond to incoming messages on the platform. Meta will begin testing user-created AI chatbots for Instagram in the US soon, and will make sure that the chats are clearly labeled as AI so users are fully aware that they are chatting with a bot. Tests will start with around 50 creators and a small percentage of Instagram users before being evaluated and rolled out to more people on the platform. These chatbots can be created and customized by the creators or businesses using them.

(–Source: TechCrunch
Read More: Meta starts testing user-created AI chatbots on Instagram | TechCrunch )

With all of the new AI programs being rolled out and pushed to consumers, the power grid is struggling to keep up. The amount of electricity that data centers now need to store information and power the modern internet has increased dramatically because of the AI arms race between tech giants. Even the simplest of tasks requires complex computations that are putting a strain on the electricity system just to train the AI.

 To help us comprehend just how much energy AI is using, check out these examples that The Washington Post mentions:

According to the International Energy Agency, one Chat-GPT search requires 10 times the amount of electricity a Google search uses.

One large data center owned by Meta burns the annual equivalent amount of power as 7 million laptops running 8 hours every day. This data was shared publicly by Meta.

Now, tech and AI companies are discussing how to manage this amount of energy use’s effects on the environment, with some companies arguing that they should advance the AI now instead of finding ways to curb the energy consumption because AI is already being used to try to achieve things like making the power grid smarter and tracking emissions. These tech giants also claim that they are purchasing clean energy initiatives every time a new data center comes online in an attempt to cancel out its emissions. However, they fail to mention the amount of fossil fuel plants that are now necessary to stabilize the power grid, but are also heavily polluting the environment.

(–Source: The Washington Post on MSN
Read More: AI is exhausting the power grid. Tech firms are seeking a miracle solution. (msn.com) )

This week, among the heavy theme of AI, we’re once again reminded of the potential ban that TikTok is facing in the US as we see ByteDance attempt to keep its presence within the states. Plus, the whole lab-engineered-human-skin-on-robots thing, while being pretty creepy, is also undeniably a pretty cool feat, making this week a very interesting one in the tech space. 

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This Week In Tech News | July 12

Happy Friday! Let’s take a moment to distract from the scorching Summer temperatures by talking about something else hot – this week’s tech news!  

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