Weekly Digest - 2020.31


Nasa launched Mars 2020 Perseverance Rover

Mars 2020 rover launched from Cape Canaveral on Thursday, and if everything goes as planned, the rove will land on Red Planed on 18 February 2021.

It's mission includes studying Mars' habitability, seeking signs of past microbial life, collecting and caching samples, and preparing for future human missions.

The rover itself is the most sophisticated ever created. It's tightly packed with latest technologies, including a freaking helicopter 🚀.

Crew Dragon returned home

SpaceX's Crew Dragon Demo-2 mission has successfully ended after 63 days. Capsule Endeavour, with Douglas Hurley  and Robert Behnken onboard, undocked from International Space Station on August 1st. After 19 hours of deorbiting,  capsule splashdown in the Gulf of Mexico.

Mission that started on May 30th is a huge success for the SpaceX and Nasa. SpaceX proved that a private company can launch man into space and safely bring them home. Not only that, they can do this much more cheaper, thanks to the reusable rockets.

Hopefully, launching men into space, not only by private companies, will become more frequent. At the moment, the next crew mission is planned for the end of September.

Apple Testifies in U.S. Antitrust Hearing

In last couple of month there was a lot of going on regarding Apple's 30% cut in the AppStore. Already EU commission is investigating the issue, now also US government started. You can read the coverage of the testimony here, but long story short, Apple is convinced they are right, despite some contradicting evidence.

iPhone 12 delayed!

Apple's CFO Luca Maestri confirmed rumors about iPhone 12 delay. During earnings call, Maestri shared that new device won't be available late September, but a few weeks later. Although the launch of the headset is delayed, Apple is still expected to unveil the device during an event in September.


Image credits: NASA/JPL

Weekly Digest - 2020.16


Motorola will announce its next flagship phone on April 22nd
Motorola will unveil its latest flagship devices on April 22nd during a virtual event. It’s expected to announce at least two devices — the Edge and the Edge Plus — that will feature edge-to-edge screens.
The OnePlus 8 Pro has a 120Hz screen, quadruple camera, and costs $899
OnePlus is launching two new OnePlus 8 series phones. The flagship handset is the OnePlus 8 Pro which includes a 120Hz display and a quadruple camera system.
Apple Announces New iPhone SE With 4.7-Inch Display, A13 Chip, and Touch ID, Starts at $399
Apple today announced the second-generation iPhone SE with a 4.7-inch display, A13 Bionic chip, Touch ID home button, up to 256GB of storage, and...
gamescom on Twitter
“❗ Even though not all details are known at present, the nationwide ban on major events until the end of August will also affect the planning for #gamescom2020. Furthermore: gamescom 2020 will definitely take place digitally! We will provide further information shortly. ❗”

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2020-04-16/sony-is-said-to-plan-limited-playstation-5-output-in-first-year

SpaceX Gets May Date to Launch 2 NASA Astronauts to Space Station
The crew will be the first to travel to orbit from American soil since the space shuttle stopped flying in 2011.
Leaked iPhone 12 Pro Max Schematics Show Thinner Design, Smaller Bezels, LiDAR Camera, and More
YouTube channel EverythingApplePro and Max Weinbach have shared what they’re claiming is a sneak peek of Apple’s hitherto unreleased...

Weekly Digest - 2020.03


Samsung Galaxy S20

XDA Developers leaked the photos of the successor to Samsung's flagship phone - Galaxy S10. What's interesting, Samsung is not going to just increment the number to S11, instead they are going to jump ahead to S20. Probably Samsung is naming is based on current year.  Other visible differences are:

  • front facing camera cutout is closer to the center of screen,
  • rear camera has 4 lenses:  regular wide, an ultra-wide, portrait, and a macro,
  • body is less curved.

For the rest of the spec, we'll have to wait until February 11th.

New iPhones and iPads with faster 5G

According to Ming-Chi Kuo, this year iPhone will support both sub-6GHz 5G (slightly faster than LTE) and faster mmWave 5G (closer to WiFi transfers). Previous reports suggested only the the former, so this week rumor is a nice surprise. Of corse, it is possible that faster 5G will be available only in selected models of iPhone.  That would line up with  last week rumors,  that new iPhones might have staggered rollout.

Also, according to DigiTimes, upcoming iPads will get faster 5G as well.  Although, this feature might be limited only to iPad Pro lineup.

New MacBooks coming soon

Apple has register portable and unreleased Mac in Eurasian Economic Commission database. Common sense indicates that might be new 13-inch, or maybe even 14-inch, MacBook Pro with a scissor keyboard. Regardless, of the screen size, new Mac will be released within couple of weeks.

Windows 7 is dead

After 11 years, Microsoft is officially ending support for Windows 7. Although, users should not get any bug fixes or feature updates, Windows 7 will share the fate of Windows XP, and Microsoft will be releasing critical security updates for couple more years.

New Microsoft Edge is out

Microsoft has finally released the stable version of the Edge browser based on the Google's Chromium web browser project. New Microsoft Edge is available on both Windows and macOS.

Cyberpunk 2077 delayed

Cyberpunk 2077 has been delayed by 5 months.  In the special statement,  CD Project Red (CDPR) announced that the released date has been moved to September 17th.

Cyberpunk 2077 is one of the most anticipated games of this year, and it is not a surprise, that CDPR want to polish the game and release the best game possible. CDPR did similar move with Witcher 3, which also was delayed for 3 months and turned it to be one of the best RPGs ever. So, there is nothing to worry about, all we need to do is be patient.

SpaceX Crew Dragon Launch Escape Demonstration

On Sunday, SpaceX performed the final test of the Crew Dragon. The goal of this mission was to verify the escape mechanisms of the Crew Dragon capsule.

Less than one and half minute after Falcon's 9 launch, Crew Dragon separated from the booster. Seconds later rocket itself was destroyed. Meanwhile, Crew Dragon achieved safe distance and parachuted in the ocean.

The test looked to be successful. If the telemetry confirms that, it means that SpaceX will be in the home stretch to send first astronauts into space.


Image credits: XDA Developers

Weekly digest - 2019.50


Mac Pro

Mac Pro is finally here. The base configuration has:

  • 8-Core 3.5GHz Intel Xeon W with Turbo Boost up to 4.4GHz
  • 32GB of DDR4 ECC RAM,
  • AMD Radeon Pro Vega 580X with 8GB GDDR5 memory
  • 256GB SSD,
  • 1.4 KW PSU,
  • Eight PCI Express expansion slots,
  • I/O card with 2 USB3 and 2 thunderbolt ports,
  • Two 10Gb Ethernet ports,
  • 802.11ac Wi-Fi and Bluetooth 5.0,
  • Built-in speaker and 3.5 mm headphone jack.

The base model cost "only" $5999. The top specification looks like this:

  • 28-Core 2.5GHz Intel Xeon W with Turbo Boost up to 4.4GHz
  • 1.5TB of DDR4 ECC RAM,
  • 2 AMD Radeon Pro Vega II Duo cards with total of 128GB of memory,
  • 4TB SSD,
  • 1.4 KW PSU,
  • Afterburner card for accelerating ProRes and ProRes RAW footage manipulation,
  • I/O card with 2 USB3 and 2 thunderbolt ports,
  • Two 10Gb Ethernet ports,
  • 802.11ac Wi-Fi and Bluetooth 5.0,
  • Built-in speaker and 3.5 mm headphone jack.

It is mind-blowing, and costs $52199.

Also, we can buy steel frame with wheels for additional $400. So far first impressions are positive, so it looks like Pro focused Apple is back.

Xbox Series X

During Game Awards Show, Microsoft has unveiled the name and design of the upcoming Xbox called Xbox Series X. The console itself looks more like a PC than we’ve seen from previous Xbox consoles, but I really like this design. What's important, it can be used in both vertical and horizontal orientations, which was not the case with original Xbox one. There is no more details about the hardware inside the console, but we know it will have:

  • Custom CPU based on AMD’s Zen 2 architecture,
  • Radeon RDNA GPU,
  • GDDR6 RAM,
  • SSD for storage,
  • Native 4K at 60 FPS, up to 120 FPS,
  • Support for 8K gaming,
  • Hardware accelerated ray tracing.

For the first time we also get a first glance at the new gamepad. To my relief, it has not been changed that much, but there is couple of improvements. It’s slightly smaller than current one.  Also, there is new, PS4 style, Share button, for uploading screenshots and video clips. The D-pad has also been redesigned, instead of cross shape, it has circle one, like in the Elite controller.

Regarding the name. At the first sight, it is awful, but there might be more to it than meets the eye. The name might suggest, to average consumer, this is continuation to Xbox One X lineup and all the games will we compatible (which has been confirmed by Microsoft). Or, which is more probable, Microsoft is going to release more than one next-gen console.

Game Awards 2019

Here is the list of new trailers presented during the show:


Image credits: Apple

Weekly digest - 2019.29


50th Anniversary of Historic Moon Landing

This year we celebrate the 50th Anniversary one of the greatest achievements in human history, the human Moon landing. On July 16th 1969, Neil Armstrong, Buzz Aldrin and Michael Collins went on a voyage that took them to the Moon.

It took NASA only 8 years not only to build  the spacecraft, but also to invent the technology, procedures and even science which would allow them to land on the Moon. During Gemini and Apollo programs, NASA mastered the rocket launches, they learned how to bring two spaceships together and dock them on Earth's orbit. With Apollo 8, for the first time ever, human left Earth's orbit, went around the Moon and was safely brought back to Earth. And, of course, the culmination of all the efforts was on July 20 1969, when Neil Armstrong, as first human in history, set foot on the Moon.

I really wish that US government didn't stop fundings. With this speed and rate of innovations, the space travels would be now a "routine". Maybe we would be celebrating not only the Moon landing, but also the Mars one. Not to even mention innovations in other branches of science and their impact on day-to-day life.

But the history went differently ☹️  Even with limited fundings the innovation did not stop and we achieved some of those things. Thanks to the private companies, like SpaceX, the spaceflights became "cheap" and "routine". Also, we are still benefiting from Apollo program in other areas. All of that is awesome, but we have not reach the Mars yet. Hopefully we will not have to wait for long.


Image credits: NASA