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Episodes

Home of the most recent episodes of The CultCast including links to topics discussed and coupons from our beloved sponsors.

330: 💥 Apple ditches Intel 💥

Chris C.

  Photo: Thomas Hawk/ Flickr

Photo: Thomas Hawk/Flickr

This week on CultCast:

  • Whoa! Apple just stole Google’s head of A.I. to make Siri smarter
  • Apple plans to ditch Intel processors on the Mac
  • You won’t believe the massive cash being pay to silicon valley’s A.I. talent
  • Future iPhones could boast curved displays and touch-free controls
  • iOS 11.4 public beta arrives with AirPlay 2, but it won’t work with your HomePod
  • And a Leander gives us the scoop on his new Tim Cook book!


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  • We also want to give Kevin MacLeod at Incompetech.com a thanks for the great music you hear on today’s show.


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Apple steals Google’s A.I. wiz to make Siri smarter

https://www.cultofmac.com/539125/apple-steals-googles-john-giannandrea-ai-siri/

  • John Giannandrea used to be in charge of Google’s search and artificial intelligence, but now he works for Apple. He’s leading the drive to make the company’s Siri voice assistant smarter, a goal many would agree is overdue.
  • NYT: Apple said on Tuesday that Mr. Giannandrea will run Apple’s “machine learning and A.I. strategy,” and become one of 16 executives who report directly to Apple’s chief executive, Timothy D. Cook.
  • This is the most high-profile move yet in a ongoing drive to hire more talent for the Siri team. Mr. Giannandrea came to Google in 2010, where he helped make AI and machine learning part of all the company’s products, from search to Gmail. And now he’s doing that for Apple.
  • Apple is also looking to hire to hire 142 more people for Siri-related jobs, almost twice as many as this time last year.

Tech Giants Are Paying Huge Salaries for Scarce A.I. Talent

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/10/22/technology/artificial-intelligence-experts-salaries.html

  • Fun fact: Engineers with A.I. expertise are some of the most sought-after people in Silicon Valley, with salaries sometimes exceeding eight figures.
  • Tech’s biggest companies are placing huge bets on artificial intelligence, banking on things ranging from face-scanning smartphones and conversational coffee-table gadgets to computerized health care and autonomous vehicles.
  • Typical A.I. specialists, including both Ph.D.s fresh out of school and people with less education and just a few years of experience, can be paid from $300,000 to $500,000 a year or more in salary and company stock
  • In a court filing this year, Google revealed that one of the leaders of its self-driving-car division, Anthony Levandowski, a longtime employee who started with Google in 2007, took home over $120 million in incentives before joining Uber last year
  • In the entire world, fewer than 10,000 people have the skills necessary to tackle serious artificial intelligence research, according to Element AI, an independent lab in Montreal.
  • Not enough teachers because they all get lured into making their fortunes
  • Over the last several years, four of the best-known A.I. researchers in academia have left or taken leave from their professorships at Stanford University. At the University of Washington, six of 20 artificial intelligence professors are now on leave or partial leave and working for outside companies.
  • Nonprofits like Fast.ai and companies like Deeplearning.ai, founded by a former Stanford professor who helped create the Google Brain lab, offer online courses.

Future iPhones could boast curved displays and touch-free controls

https://www.cultofmac.com/539239/future-iphones-could-boast-curved-displays-and-touch-free-controls/

  • According to Bloomberg, Apple is working on touchless gesture controls and curved screens for future iPhones
  • The touchless control feature would be a bit like the Air Gestures feature Samsung introduced several years back. This allows users to accept calls and navigate through web pages by waving their hands across the screen.
  • The other new technology is for a curved display more noticeable than the slight curve seen on the iPhone X’s OLED screen. Unlike Samsung’s curved handsets, which curve down at the edges, Apple’s approach reportedly curves “inward gradually from top to bottom.”

iOS 11.4 public beta arrives with AirPlay 2, but it won’t work with your HomePod just yet

https://www.cultofmac.com/539063/ios-11-4-public-beta-arrives-with-airplay-2/

Apple plans to ditch Intel processors on the Mac

https://www.cultofmac.com/538829/apple-plans-to-ditch-intel-processors-on-the-mac/

  • Apple is pushing forward with plans to ditch Intel’s processors in favor of its own chips, according to a new report that claims the transition away from Intel CPUs will likely take multiple steps.
  • Bloomberg says that Apple executives have already approved the project to make the Mac run on ARM-based processors by 2020.
  • Moving to its own chips inside Macs would let Apple release new models on its own timelines, instead of relying on Intel’s processor roadmap.
  • Making the move to ARM chips won’t be easy though. All software would basically have to be rewritten for the new processors, which certainly won’t make developers happy.
  • Pluses
    • Intel chips have stalled in major progress, leaving little reason for many to update from older computers.
    • The A11 bionic chip inside the iPhone X beats meets or beats Geekbench scores of the fastest 2017 13” MacBook Pro
    • No more waiting on Intel! More regular releases of Macs with updated hardware.
    • Even tighter integration of your Mac, iPhone, iPad, and other  devices
  • Concerns
    • Machines not capable with doing pro work. Sure the X beats a 13” MBP, but what about a desktop 4-core or 6-core chip with hyper threading?
    • is this going to mean Macs that are more like phones and iPads? (efficient but not very powerful)
    • Even more of a walled-garden as Apple fine-tunes it’s machines to work best with it’s own software, but 3rd party apps may not follow