Google, Continental AG, IBM Drive Automation Forward

NASA debuts its own autonav accomplishment
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FRANKFURT, GERMANY—Google’s automated car initiative may soon be driven forward by a partnership between the U.S. technology company, German automotive manufacturer Continental AG and computing company IBM, Reuters has reported.

Google has been developing and testing autonomous driving systems since 2010, and Continental AG is already working with Cisco Systems to develop its own technology for automated and driverless vehicles, as well as car data transfer.

The Daily Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung reports that the rumored new alliances will be officially revealed at September’s Frankfurt Car Show.

This news preceded an announcement by NASA that the Mars Curiosity rover has debuted its own autonomous navigation system, according to a Science Daily article. The unmanned space explorer can choose its own routes by analyzing images of the surrounding terrain by taking sets of stereo pairs of images to create its own map.

Developments in autonomous navigation, both on Earth and on other planets, have implications for many government functions. Possible future applications for unmanned vehicles include policing, fire patrol, military, search & rescue, and even urban people movers such as busses and trollies. Many applications will require complex audiovisual systems for these tasks.


Panasonic Announces Updates for AG-HPX300

Panasonic Broadcast has announced the availability of a free flash band compensation firmware update for its AG HPX300 P2 HD camcorder product. The new firmware targets CMOS imager performance improvement and also compensated for the "flash band" effect seen in

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Panasonic AG-AF100

Designed to shoot HD cinema-like wide-angle footage with shallow depth of field more simply than is possible with other techniques.