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Pixar pioneers behind Toy Story animation win “Nobel Prize” of computing

Pixar pioneers behind Toy Story animation win “Nobel Prize” of computing

Technology
In the opening scene of Toy Story, released in 1995, a cluster of boxes is scattered across a child's bedroom. The sun streams into the room as a Mr Potato Head doll demands money from a seemingly stricken cast of plastic and plush toys outside a cardboard bank. Into the picture arrives the hero - a cowboy sheriff made of plastic and fabric with a pull-string to make him speak. The sheriff casts a shadow over the villainous potato who flees from the law. It's a scene plucked from a child's imagination. It was also the culmination of decades of development in computer animation. This year two of the men behind those advancements, Ed Catmull and Pat Hanrahan, are the recipients of the Turing Award. The award recognizes "lasting and...
Scientists send light through 2D crystal layer in quantum computing leap

Scientists send light through 2D crystal layer in quantum computing leap

Science
July 23 (UPI) -- Physicists in Europe have managed send light through a two-dimensional crystal layer, a breakthrough that provides a semiconducting platform for quantum computing. In modern computers -- in laptops or smartphones -- the storage and movement of information is carried out by flowing electrons. The flow of electrons is controlled by small semiconductor devices called transistors. If electrons were replaced by photons, the movement of information inside a computer could happen at the speed of light. This is the idea behind quantum computing. Scientists have repeatedly demonstrated the potential of quantum technology -- teleporting and storing bits of information using light -- but only at small scales. No quantum computer yet exists. One of the problems is that researchers ...
Cloud computing, artificial intelligence on Microsoft agenda

Cloud computing, artificial intelligence on Microsoft agenda

Technology
Microsoft's annual Build conference for software developers kicks off on Monday, giving the company an opportunity to offer updates on its computing platforms and services. The three-day event in Seattle features sessions on cloud computing, artificial intelligence, internet-connected devices and virtual reality. It comes as Microsoft faces off with Amazon and Google to offer internet-connected services to businesses and organizations. Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella will speak Monday to more than 6,000 people, mostly developers who build apps for Microsoft's products. Facebook had its F8 developers' gathering last week. Google's I/O conference begins Tuesday. Apple's takes place in early June. This is the second year in a row that Microsoft has held its conference in Seattle, not far from it...