Facebook Rolls Out 3D Photos to All Images

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Facebook Rolls Out 3D Photos to All Images
Number 1063
Broadcast Date MARCH 2, 2020
Episode Length 5:52
Hosts Rich Stroffolino

Facebook announced it can now create 3D Photos from images captured with a single lens camera, China’s new law on internet content, the Provisions on the Governance of the Online Information Content Ecosystem goes into effect, and the Game Developers Conference is postponed due to COVID-19 concerns.


Facebook launched 3D photos on its app in 2018, which used dual camera smartphones to post images with backgrounds that moved when scrolling or tilting a device. Facebook now announced that it can produce 3D photos from virtually any 2D image, including ones previously uploaded to the service. This uses a neural network to map the estimated depth of each pixel in a 2D image, something previously supplied by the secondary "portrait" camera. Viewing the photos requires the Facebook mobile app on an iPhone 7 or newer, or a recent mid-range Android device.
The Provisions on the Governance of the Online Information Content Ecosystem, originally announced on December 15th, went into effect in China over the weekend. According to Jeremy Daum of the China Law Translate project, the new law splits online content into three groups, "illegal" which includes dissemination of rumors, disrupting economic and social order, and destroying national unity, "negative" which includes "sensationalizing headlines" and content that would have a "negative impact to the online information ecosystem," and "encouraged," like "positive and wholesome content" and "spreading economic and social achievement." The law also bans rumors, as well as threats, insults, and doxxing individuals.
Organizers of the Game Developers Conference announced the event will be postponed, with plans to hold "a GDC event" sometime this summer. GDC was scheduled for March 16-20 in San Francisco, but presenters like Sony, EA, Activision Blizzard, Unity, and Epic Games announced they would not attend due to concerns around COVID-19. The Independent Games Festival and Game Developers Choice Awards ordinarily held at the event will be streamed on Twitch during the week of the event, and the organizers offered to host videos of any conference speakers on its YouTube channel and the free section of the GDC Vault.
A new note from Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo estimates that Chinese iPhone production won't improve until Q2 2020, as a result of delays and low labor return rates at factories due to the continuing COVID-19 outbreak. Camera lens shipments from Genius Electronic Optical have particularly dwindled, with Apple holding a one month inventory, and production not expected to pick up until at least May.
Vivo's latest APEX concept phone features a 48-megapixel "gimbal camera" below the zoom camera. Vivo says "it achieves optical stabilization in the front-back and left-right inclined directions with enhanced performance." This design was inspired by a chameleon's eyeball. Meanwhile, Xiaomi Vice President Chang Cheng posted a video demonstrating a new 40W wireless charging technology. The video showed a 4000mAh device being charged from 0 to 57% in 20 minutes, and fully charged in 40 minutes. It's unclear when this 40W charging will make it to production devices.
Microsoft announced that Cortana skills including music, connected home, and other third party skills will no longer be available in the upcoming updated Cortana experience on Windows 10, which will instead focus on productivity. Some of Microsoft's top skill integrations included Xbox, Fitbit, Phillips Hue, Spotify, and SmartThings/Samsung.
AT&T launched its AT&T TV streaming service in the US, which offers a similar channel lineup as DirecTV, but comes over the internet rather than by satellite. Pricing starts at $50 for the first year, but requires a two year contact with the price increasing to $93 in the second year. One Android-TV receiver is included, with additional boxes available for $120, and includes apps to other streaming services, and a 500 hour DVR. AT&T began testing the service in 13 markets last year.
Following an inquiry by Buzzfeed News, Apple suspended the developer account of Clearview AI, preventing its iOS app from operating. Clearview was distributing the app through Apple’s Enterprise Developer Program, which allows for apps to be distributed internally, but expressly forbids use by third-parties. According to an Apple spokesperson, Clearview AI has 14 days to respond. Clearview AI also offers Android and desktop apps.
A Twitter account for Andrew Waltz, republican candidate for US Congress in Rhode Island was verified by Twitter earlier this month. Unfortunately, the account was not created by Waltz, but by a 17-year-old high school student in New York State. He told CNN he created the account over the holiday break because he was bored. He downloaded a picture from This Person Does Not Exist and created a fake website as well. He also created a page for the candidate on Ballotpedia which requires a survey be filled out for any candidate information to be created. Ballotpedia partners with Twitter and submitted a list of candidates to Twitter that included the fake Waltz. Ballotpedia says this was because it did not distinguish "declared" candidates from "filed" in the list and will do so in the future.
Alphabet's X lab announced a new project called Tidal, which looks into ways to protect the ocean, preserve its ability to sustain life and use it as a sustainable food source. Tidal's first project uses computer vision with underwater camera footage to monitor individual fish in fish farms to detect behavior not visible to the human eye. This could allow farmers to make more efficient decisions in feeding and raising the fish, leading to less environmental impact. The Financial Times reported that Tidal is working with farms based in Europe and Asia to track several species including salmon and yellowtail.


Preceded by:
"Week in Review for the Week of 2/24/20"
Facebook Rolls Out 3D Photos to All Images
Followed by:
"Facebook And Twitter Pull Out Of SXSW"