The UK government is looking to lead the way into the market of electric cars.

We’re slowly edging onto a time where petroleum might see a bit of a downfall, so now, an electric car technology will undergo trial in the UK to ascertain just how close that is. The United Kingdom seems to be relentlessly pursuing their goal to become the leading nation in e-cars, hybrids and driverless vehicles.

They’re investing more and more into an industry that has yet to see proper profit, but representatives seem optimistic that it will certainly be well worth it. Currently, Highways England have announced that they will be testing electric car technology that will involve wireless charging across a long stretch of road.

The government agency is pursuing the goals of lowering the number of gas emissions by investing into electric vehicles and preventing drivers from needing to stop at charging stations on the way. It would spare time and traffic along England’s motorways, which could be indeed precious for transportation trucks and other professional drivers.

The wireless charging technology will be installed underground and testing will be starting later this year to properly understand how safe and efficient it would be for UK’s population. The ambitious trial will reportedly last around 18 months, during which they will study the feasibility of wireless power transfer.

According to UK’s Transport Minister, Andrew Jones, the innovative technology that will open up “exciting possibilities”, the government has already committed around $781 million (£500 million) for the next 5 years. Their ambition is certainly being well funded to become the leading nation in e-cars and an environmentalist to battle the high amount of gas emissions reportedly damaging our planet.

Highways England chief engineer, Mike Wilson, has emphasized their wish to strongly support the cause of limiting pollution by supporting the ever-charging world of technology where potentially harming vehicles are concerned. And, hopefully, this will help create a more supporting system of wireless charging that will benefit both the government and its citizens.

In addition, the agency plans on installing plug-in charging stations at intervals of 20 miles along the motorway after properly equipping electric cars and hybrids with wireless technology that would charge as they go by. Then, the testing will be begin, with the network powering up vehicles as they pass from underneath, to simulate real conditions that could greatly benefit transport workers.

If the off-road trials will prove themselves successful, Highways England would start testing electric cars and wireless technology on real roads. So, at some point in the future, it might be possible that transporters driving along the UK’s motorways will never need to stop for gas again. Charging stations themselves might just turn into stores for snacks and bathrooms.

Image source: media.toyota.co.uk

Facebook will become the source of more ads that are specific to the user.

The internet is a vital part of advertising and online promotion can have a huge impact on retailers, so Facebook is improving their ads to better smooth over the transition between client and company. As stated on Tuesday, the social media network will be looking to boost its advertising skills by introducing the users to new type of ads.

And it’s not just on Facebook. The Dynamic Product Ads are the social media company’s response to Google’s Product Listing Ads, who has shown excellent results for the tech giant. For example, retailers and other companies have spent 47% more on shopping ads in the holiday season of 2014 than they did a year ago.

With growing numbers, Facebook is now making a change in order to attract more retailers by improving on the way they feature ads across their website. And considering they’re standing at 1.4 billion users and are the most popular social media network worldwide, it’s quite clear that they have a large audience to target.

The biggest and, likely to be most popular, part of Facebook’s Audience Network, are the native videos, which are auto-playing clips featuring promotion of products or commercials around the website. They are quite possibly the most successful form of online advertising at the moment, and it fits well into the social media’s trend of delving deeper into the video-sharing market.

Now to be found in your News Feed and made available for third party networks, ads will be targeting specific audiences by displaying products of websites that users have visited in the past, live nearby the retail store or applies to their interests. For example, if the user has shown a preference for a particular store or designer, it will feature more products of the same company.

The update focuses heavily on targeting specific buyers and zeroing in on products related to previous purchases, along with attempting to display more ads for users who have been prone in the past to purchase an item. According to Facebook, it would be more efficient  to charge in a pay per purchase manner instead of the regular pay per click.

Those who click on the ad may not necessarily actually buy a product, a fact well known to most online users. While that may cut down on the number of clicks, they will switch their priority from the quantity of clicks to the actual number that is more beneficial for the retailer.

The social media networking website is also adding click-to-play formats for their ads (most popular and useful for games) and carousel ads (showing sequential images).

Image source: adweek.com

If you’ve been drinking, don’t reach for the keys, reach for your phone and call a cab.

The CDC has released a worrying report: 4 million drunk drivers are loose on the streets of the US. And that’s just an approximate number that stands for all buy five states, as the survey could not gather enough data to make a nation-wide statistic.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have released the analysis results of the data gathered by a 2012 survey which asked respondents if they had been drinking in the past month, how many times it had happened before they went for a drive, and how many times did they think that their drinking was over the limit.

The results are sobering, to say the least. Almost 2 percent of all American adults – exactly 4.2 million, said that yes, they had been driving under the influence in the month prior to the survey. This turnout is more than worrying and should raise an alarm sign for the road safety authorities as well as for those who are making the decisions whether to drive or get a taxi.

According to the CDC report, about one third of the death from traffic accidents have been caused by drivers who irresponsibly went amok on the road while having drunk insanely more than the legal limit of 0.08%. Moreover, many of the respondents said that besides driving under the influence of alcohol, they also practice binge drinking, a practice that besides being bad for those around them, is also bad for their health.

Scot Karkower, a doctor specializing in alcohol excesses and treating people with drinking problems has indirectly blamed the social stigma that pushes down on drunkards. These people are just having problems, problems that could be treated by doctors. He further encourages them to seek help, despite the social opinion on them. Oftentimes those who drink will only be pushed towards more abuse by the demeaning eyes of those around them.

Almost a third of the people who said they did drink and drive and that they did binge drink were young men between the ages of 21 and 34. And 80% of all incidents of driving while drunk are attributed to men. The most worrying area because of drunk drivers is said to be Hawaii, where there were 995 instances of DUI for every 1,000 people.

Still, the agency was not able to gather results from Alaska, Mississippi, Arkansas, Tennessee, and West Virginia, so there could be much more drunk drivers out there.

Image source: mirror.co.uk

Sam and Nia have two children and a third one on the way.

Shortly after it was first published on early Thursday morning, first video of husband announcing his wife’s pregnancy becomes Internet sensation. The online video has been viewed by Internet users all over the world praising Sam for being the first man to make a pregnancy announcement to his wife in the history of all marriages.

In a normal scenario, the wife drops the good news on her husband letting him know that he was going to be a father. Sam Paul, the father of two, wanted to do things differently. His wife notified him that she was 14 days late, but she was, nonetheless, not sure about the final outcome because she did not take a pregnancy test.

Too eager to wait any longer, Sam conceived an unbeatable plan to be the first to find out if his wife is pregnant or not. Long before his wife did, too. According to the video he posted on his official YouTube channel wife Nia has a habit of going to the toilet late at night and not flushing so she would not wake her two children up.

Sam used this opportunity to collect a specimen and take the pregnancy test for his wife. He filmed the whole process explaining the whole story behind the video and what his future plans were. Sam filmed all the moments as the pregnancy test displayed the two lines indicating a new pregnancy.

As expected, the husband’s enthusiasm skyrocketed, but he, nevertheless, managed to refrain himself and to wait until the next day to let his wife know the great news. The video introduces Nia next, while she is having breakfast with her two young girls. Husband Sam makes ironic jokes inviting Nia to a glass of wine and then letting her know that she is not allowed to drink wine.

Nia does not pay attention to him and repeatedly tells him that she is not sure she is pregnant. Sam takes the pregnancy test out of the pocket and explains Nia how he found out that she was expecting another baby. Nia was incredibly happy to hear the great news and to be the first woman to hear such an announcement, we might add.

Don’t forget to click on the video below to see Nia’s reaction when her husband lets her know she is expecting a baby.

Image source: www.timg.com

Women should opt for a fiber-based diet, especially if in their postmenopausal years.

Based on the findings of a new study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, refined carbs could be linked to women’s postmenopausal depression. Researchers concluded that the carbohydrates that women consume determine significant changes in the glycemic index of women causing them to feel depressed during menopause.

Nutrition experts at the Columbia University Medical Center have conducted a long analysis of the medical records that were registered in the past for many female patients. The research included the data collected in the period between 1994 and 1998 for Women’s Health Initiative Observational Study.

The medical records that have been subjected to a new examination amounted to 70,000. The corresponding female respondents have been chosen for this particular research because they have all reached their postmenopausal age and scientists wanted to establish whether certain activities could influence their behavior or not.

Based on the results they have registered, nutrition experts have reached the conclusion that carbohydrates consumption plays a significant role in the moods that postmenopausal women experience. The more refined carbs the respondents consumed, the bigger the chances were for them to feel tired, depressed and sad.

Women have to adopt a balanced diet once they have reached their post menopause, was researchers’ conclusion. In their opinion, a healthy diet has to take into consideration the glycemic index (GI) of the patient and the types of carbs she consumes. In addition, possible mental affections that the woman may be suffering from enable researchers to determine whether the patient will suffer from depression or not.

Refined carbohydrates have always been associated with many health and weight problems. It appears that it also influences a woman’s psychic by triggering fluctuations in the blood glucose levels. Depression has usually been noticed in women with very low blood glucose levels, who also consume refined carbohydrates, according to the new discovery that scientists have made.

Researchers recommend women to avoid products that are rich in carbs, such as, grain-based aliments. Instead, women should opt for a fiber-rich diet from vegetables, non-juice fruits and whole grains.

Although the study has been already acknowledged by most nutrition experts, experts think additional researches must be conducted to prove the validity of the experiment.

Image source: www.medaus.com

Yoga could help alleviate many PTSD symptoms.

Veterans returning from war often experience mental affections as a result of their bad memories and recollections. Psychology experts think a new treatment could help alleviate soldiers’ problems as researches have shown that mindful post-traumatic therapy threats PTSD.

PTSD, also known as post-traumatic stress disorder, is as the name says it, a mental illness occurring as a result of a traumatic event that the subject has been exposed to. War veterans often suffer from PTSD upon their return to their homes because they cannot forget the impressive events they have witnessed on the battle fields.

Being constantly afraid for your life or your friend’s life, seeing people killed in front of your eyes are images that cannot be easily wiped away from a person’s memory. For that matter, soldiers have to undergo various psychological treatments in order to get rid of the nightmares, flashbacks and depression states that affect their social lives. Left untreated, these mental illnesses could worsen and eventually lead to suicidal behaviors, which is why it is important to correctly diagnose and treat patients suffering from PTSD.

Traditional treatments have proven themselves effective, but veterans are often reluctant because they have to openly confess that they are suffering from post-traumatic disorders. For that matter, researchers at the American Medical Association have conducted a study among two groups of American soldiers who have served in the Iraq war.

The first group was treated with the help of conventional psychological sessions, whereas the second group received mindful post-traumatic therapy sessions for an interval of two months. The second type of treatment presupposed that respondents took part in nine therapy sessions during which they performed various breathing, stretching and relaxing exercises. For a better illustration, the new post-traumatic therapy was compared to yoga meditation classes, scientists have added.

Results showed that mindful therapy is much more effective in treating PTSD. The group that took part in meditation classes saw an improvement of their mental state of up to 49%. Participants in the conventional group registered only a 28% improvement of their health condition.

Based on these figures, researchers have concluded that mindful therapy could be much more effective in treating PTSD symptoms. In addition, soldiers no longer suffer from the stigma that PTSD diagnoses usually put on people. However, the new therapy should at first complement traditional treatments, whose efficiency has been proven many times before.

Image source: cascade.madmimi.com

Apple users could receive additional help from Siri once the enhanced version is released in 2016.

The iPhone maker has made so many changes to its voice-based assistant that Apple’s enhanced Siri could replace human assistants. The 2016 version will see the introduction of many more features as a result of Apple’s attempt to provide additional help to its customers.

The competition between smartphone producers is getting stronger and stronger each day, which is why it shouldn’t surprise us that enterprises come up with new services and products every year. This time it is Apple’s Siri voice assistant which will most likely draw everyone’s attention, according to tech savvies.

The iPhone producer has recently hinted that the enhanced version of Siri which will be available in 2016 will feature many more user-friendly options. The company is trying to make its assistant as reliable as possible by introducing a new feature that allows the transcription of voice messages into regular messages for users who cannot always access their voice email.

In addition, Siri could also answer voice emails on behalf of the users. The voice based assistant will replace the conventional pre-recorded messages and, instead will bear a standard conversation with the interlocutor, much like a robotic receptionist would do.

Thanks to Siri’s new options, interlocutors may be notified when the phone user is not available for a conversation. The assistant also lets people know why the user cannot answer the phone, as well as other useful details such as the time when he/she will be available for phone calls again. Users have the possibility to select the information they want Siri to transmit on their behalf.

These are just some of the new attributes that Siri could boast in the future. Tech analysts think the new software could also better organize files on the folder, by allowing users to easily select them with a simple voice command. Thus, users only have to say “Show me last month’s pictures” and Siri will automatically display them.

Since cloud services have become so vital these days, Apple will most certainly work to bridge the gap between its voice assistant and its iCloud service. According to the company’s previous declarations, Siri could also be integrated with the iCloud platform, providing quick access to the uploaded files.

These rumors have yet to be confirmed by Apple as the company did not make any official declaration in relation to the launching of the new Siri. More news will be delivered as the launching date approaches.

Image source: rackcdn.com

Droughts have a much larger impact on the environment than was initially thought.

It seems like this is one of the few instances in which such a saying works – climate change causes drought causes climate change. This is a fact. Considering it as such, it is easy to understand while the threat of global warming is growing at an exponential rate.

Trees, as you may know, as well as plants in general, are carbon storage facilities. They breathe carbon and let out oxygen. Sounds simple enough. But there is a problem in the equation. It is already a known fact that climate change causes a wide range of nasty phenomenon around our planet.

From storms to floods and from fires to droughts, it seems like the approaching sixth mass extinction – the first one to be caused by humans – is, suddenly, much more palpable. But researchers used to think that reintroducing wetness into areas of previous drought would restart the environment as you would a plant after forgetting to water it for a few days.

But they were wrong.

Never forget that in science, the most logical of assumptions often turn out to be false. This is exactly the case with this. After a severe drought, trees are the most affected. Yet, now let’s assume that the drought in a hypothetical forest is over. And it’s been over for four years. Still, the effects of the severe dehydration of the area are being seen on the trees.

It seems that after mega droughts, trees do not reach their normal growth rate not even within four years. They are much too preoccupied with surviving with low levels of water. As it would happen with humans, trees also need time to recover after an illness.

And the main problem is that in that period of time in which they are struggling to regain their strength, their carbon storage capabilities are lowered. A new study which appeared in Thursday’s Science used readings of tree growth from 1,338 locations worldwide. The results were consistent with their theory.

The trees therefore grew 9% slower than in the times before the drought. The results was that forests did not grow fast enough to suck up enough carbon from the atmosphere, and therefore the droughts could easily reappear due to the increased emissions.

For the study, the researchers from the Environmental Institute of Princeton, said that they needed to treat trees in an equal way, so that the results could be transformed into an average to be used by administrations as a model for action.

So, it seems that the problem of climate change, if it’s not tackled properly (as it’s never been), will only grow exponentially worse.

Image source: slate.com

The self-driving Google cars with Anima sensors will be tracking down air quality.

A new partnership was born and, now, Google and Aclima are watching out the air for us, pairing up in order to provide the population a better understanding of air pollution. The tech giant has taken up arms in order to fight environmental issues and has recruited sensor networks company, Aclima, to their ranks.

The team has put forth efforts to map out air pollution on the streets of Denver, Colorado as a pilot test. They strapped on Aclima air quality sensors on three Google Street View cars and set them loose on the streets in order to measure the quantities of harmful substances in the air.

The sensors took note of nitrogen dioxide, nitric oxide, ozone, carbon monoxide, carbon dioxide, methane, black carbon, particulate matter and volatile organic compounds, all harmful to the good quality of our air and hazardous to breathe.

The three cars registered 750 hours of driving during a month long test and collected 150 million data points of air quality, measuring it for chemicals and marking down out the hot spots on Google’s Street View. Analysis confirmed that the air quality sensor was able to detect harmful chemicals in the air in a street-by-street manner, calculating what could be valuable information for future development.

Aclima founder, Davida Herzl, hopes that one day the data will be as easy to access as the weather in order to help both citizens and local governments understand the air quality in their home cities. Citizens might be able to avoid polluted spots while organizations could take measures against them.

The Google Earth Outreach program plans on helping nations around the world map out the air pollution in their city, targeted to specific spots where green areas could be created in order to alleviate the problem. It will prompt both a better understanding and more efficient solutions. With the help of Google’s driverless cars, Aclima can quickly pursue their mission in clearing the air we breathe and lower the rate of premature deaths caused by air pollution.

The data could be used in several ways. Pedestrians could learn the hot spots and avoid them, local governments could plant green zones in targeted areas or the future self-driving cars could modify their pattern in order not to add more pollution to an already tainted zone. That means it may cost you five or ten minutes of your time due to the detour, but the very air you breathe will be better.

Google and twelve other major companies in the United States have signed the American Business Act on Climate Pledge on Monday, and committed themselves to fighting for a cleaner environment.

Image source: aclima.io

HBO Now will be provided by Verizon.

Finally, HBO Now and Verizon partner up to provide the cable company access to the internet-only service via FiOS. The Home Box Office exclusively online viewing will be made available to all the 100 million Verizon users starting today, on all platforms.

Moreover, customers who are currently in use of Verizon’s standalone broadband service will be entitled to a 30-days free trial of HBO Now, including phones or, the most likely option, tablets. The deal could prove itself to be as significant for Verizon as it had been for Apple, when HBO’s streaming service offered its services exclusively for the first three months.

The HBO Now service provides its users instant access to all content, ranging from excellent and recent movies, such as “Gone Girl”, “X-Men: Days of Future Past” and “The Maze Runner” to addictive TV series that will keep you on the edge of your seat, like “True Detective”, “Silicon Valley” and “Game of Thrones”.

Ben Grad, Verizon Executive Director of Content Strategy and Acquisition, has stated his excitement toward the partnership and hopes that this will bring better entertainment to users who wish for premium quality and content on all devices. HBO Now provides just that.

Meanwhile, Jeff Dallesandro, HBO Senior Vice President for Worldwide Digital Distribution and Business Development has remarked that the agreement is the best way to spark innovation and bring Verizon users up to all manners of entertainment that their company is known for.

HBO Now is currently available for Verizon FiOS Internet and HSI customers, and they can join up online to activate their 30-day free trial. After completing the short form, Verizon subscribers only need to download the HBO Now app on their phone or tablet, which is compatible with all products of the kind, whether Apple, Android or Amazon Fire.

After installation, the application will become available in the list of providers, for which users will need to complete registration and then they can enjoy HBO Now content to their heart’s desire.

Starting today, HBO Now is also available to non-FiOS customers and TV only subscribers as well, at the standard fee of $14.99 per month. The free month trial will still be available for them, after which it’s up to customers if they wish to continue and keep their access to all the high quality HBO content, to come soon on Verizon mobile video platform as well.

It’s good news and soon-to-be beneficial deal for Verizon, as most users are now resorting to cord cutting and directing their attention to the internet for their entertainment, such as Netflix.

Image source: the7seven.com