Here’s a weekly roundup of what made news in the world of science and technology.
September set a new record for how far above normal temperatures were, scientists said earlier this week, raising concerns around global warming. September 2023 beat the previous record for the month, set in 2020, by 0.5C (0.9F), according to data sets maintained by the Japan Meteorological Agency and the EU’s Copernicus Climate Change Service. The temperature anomaly for the month was roughly 1.7C above pre-industrial levels, which is above the symbolic 1.5C mark set as the stretch goal in the Paris Agreement, a Bloomberg report said, adding: “This month was — in my professional opinion as a climate scientist — absolutely gobsmackingly bananas,” Zeke Hausfather, a researcher with Berkeley Earth, said on the social media platforms Bluesky and X, formerly Twitter.
You must have noticed how posts from your favorite news outlets on X, formerly known as Twitter, now don’t show headlines anymore. All you see are a preview image. Elon Musk's social media platform has stripped headlines from news articles shared by users. According to an AFP report, Musk said the latest change was for "aesthetic" reasons -- news and other links now appear only as pictures with no accompanying text. The move, however, is likely to further worsen relations with media groups, the AFP report added, saying some media groups have stopped posting to X altogether because of the rise in hate speech and the behaviour of Musk.
Google introduced its latest line of Pixel Android smartphones – the Pixel 8 and Pixel 8 Pro – earlier this week, along with the next iteration of its Pixel Watch. According to Google, the new phones pack in more artificial intelligence (AI) features, which will let users have AI in their hands. For instance, one of the new tricks that the Bard-backed Google Assistant is supposed to be able to do is scan a photo taken on a phone powered by Google’s Android software and generate a caption suitable for posting on social media, an Associated Press report said. “As Google has been doing with most of its AI gambits, the Bard-backed Google Assistant initially will only be available to a test audience before it is gradually offered on an opt-in basis to more owners of the latest Pixels,” the report adds.
(With inputs from news agencies)