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How Yandex.Taxi is using automation to detect drowsy and dangerous drivers

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In its 20 years in enterprise, Yandex has been called the Russian Google, Amazon, and Spotify, largely as a result of Moscow-based tech big’s expansive attain into each nook — together with on-line search, music streaming, e-mail, maps and navigation, video, and extra. In 2011, Yandex launched a cell taxi-hailing service referred to as Yandex.Taxi, resulting in the inevitable “Uber of Russia” proclamations. Then in 2017, Yandex.Taxi and Uber merged their operations within the area to launch a brand new three way partnership focusing on Jap Europe.

Yandex.Taxi now operates throughout the Commonwealth of Impartial States (CIS), along with a handful of markets elsewhere in Europe, the Center East, and Africa. The corporate has adopted a trajectory just like Uber’s, insofar because it now additionally provides meals supply, and in 2018 it launched one of Europe’s first public self-driving taxi services as a part of a restricted pilot.

However security has emerged as a focus within the ride-hailing realm, with considerations round every part from fatigue to driver id. Again in November, Uber lost its London license — pending one other attraction — after regulator Transport for London (TfL) reported a “sample of failures” and breaches that “positioned passengers and their security in danger.”

One of many points TfL recognized is how straightforward it’s for drivers with out background checks to make use of respectable drivers’ Uber accounts to select up passengers. In response, Uber revealed plans to launch facial recognition expertise that will require U.Okay. drivers to confirm themselves periodically earlier than rides, similar to what’s done in the U.S. market. Uber has additionally beforehand sought to allay fears about fatigue by restricting drivers to 12 hours behind the wheel earlier than they’re compelled offline for a six-hour break.

In the meantime, Yandex has been conserving an in depth eye on proceedings at Uber and has been growing a slew of applied sciences to keep away from a number of the pitfalls encountered by its big-name rival.

Drowsy driving

Yandex has been quietly growing AI-infused proprietary and software program that displays drivers’ consideration ranges. Whereas related expertise is being constructed into fancy new vehicles, such as the Subaru Legacy 2020, Yandex’s incarnation could be simply retrofitted to any car, and the corporate hopes to see ride-hailing drivers benefit from the expertise. It’s value noting that the system is just like one currently being piloted by Chinese language ride-hailing big Didi.

Above: Yandex SignalQ1 digicam could be fitted to any windscreen

The corporate says its SignalQ1 digicam appears to be like at 68 factors on a driver’s face and — with the assistance of machine studying — detects when a driver is tiring or distracted. To take action, the system appears to be like at elements akin to blinking and yawning after which attributes a sleepiness and distraction rating.

Above: Yandex is trialing a driver consideration management digicam system to fight drowsiness on the wheel

The system is at present being examined in a small variety of vehicles in Moscow. For now, the alert is proscribed to an audible beep — however sooner or later the digicam will hyperlink instantly with the driving force’s Yandex account by means of the cell app, that means the corporate will be capable of take preventative actions if it deems the driving force unsafe.

“Each time the driving force will get drained, [they] will probably be notified and suspended from receiving additional [ride] orders till [they get] some relaxation,” famous Aram Sargsyan, Yandex.Taxi’s regional common supervisor for EMEA and CIS, on the Move 2020 mobility convention in London this week.

Deploying this sort of expertise at scale may very well be a problem, provided that Yandex.Taxi claims lots of of 1000’s of drivers throughout 18 international locations. Nonetheless, whereas Yandex does enable drivers with their very own vehicles to function on its platform, it additionally works instantly with taxi fleets in most of its markets, which may ease the trail to wide-scale deployment. “We are able to work with our companions and discover a solution to implement [the technology] en masse,” Sargsyan informed VentureBeat.


Yandex can be within the early levels of growing a facial recognition system, just like Uber’s, that identifies who’s actually behind the wheel. “It’s within the take a look at section being developed, and we’re optimizing it,” Sargsyan stated.

Quite than requiring devoted , Yandex will merely use the digicam on the driving force’s smartphone, just like what Uber and Didi are already doing. Nonetheless, Yandex goes a step additional, noting that additionally it is testing voice-recognition smarts to match the energetic driver with a registered account.

Whereas Sargsyan didn’t supply any specifics about how prevalent driver id fraud is in Yandex’s present markets, he stated, “We all know that the issue exists.”

The principle concern for Yandex is that the assorted regulators in its nearly 20 energetic markets may start to be aware of the problem. Taking a cue from Uber’s woes in London, the corporate is working to forestall this observe from escalating into a much bigger drawback additional down the highway.

“Within the 18 markets we function in, [regulators] are strict in sure international locations, however not as strict as TfL,” Sargsyan stated. “So we’re not ready till this turns into an issue; we are attempting to resolve it now.”

Yandex has additionally been engaged on different automated security applied sciences, together with a pace management system that notifies drivers once they’re driving too quick. Within the wake of this launch, dashing dropped 12-fold, in response to Sargsyan. And just like Uber, which has for a while been using telematic data to observe drivers’ conduct on the roads, Yandex additionally tracks driving kinds and stated it could droop drivers who show erratic or aggressive conduct.

As we edge toward the advent of autonomous vehicles, a world Yandex.Taxi very a lot needs to be part of, there was a concerted effort to ramp up security and safety efforts — in spite of everything, really self-driving vehicles are probably nonetheless years away from permeating society.

“I’d say till we’ve self-driving vehicles changing common taxi drivers and car-sharing, we should implement all attainable applied sciences to enhance the protection,” Sargsyan stated.

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Twitter’s messy verification process is making candidates wait

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On Friday morning, Jeff Websites, a challenger to Ohio Rep. Jim Jordan, didn’t have a blue verification badge on his official Twitter web page. Websites had introduced his marketing campaign months earlier, so he ought to have been verified months in the past. It caught the attention of 1 volunteer named Nancy Levine, who has been monitoring Twitter’s plan to confirm all 2020 candidates, and has been lobbying Twitter on Websites’ behalf particularly.

After talking with Levine, The Verge contacted Twitter to inquire in regards to the nature of the delay; inside hours, the candidate was verified.

Nonetheless, the Websites scenario illustrates the continued messiness of Twitter’s verification course of, which the platform touts as a key device in stopping disinformation. Twitter says it has verified 822 candidates because it unveiled the 2020 plan in December, but nonetheless depends on folks like Levine, who has no ties to any marketing campaign, to prod them into motion.

Right here’s how the method is meant to work: Ballotpedia verifies candidate is reliable, both by the candidate contacting them, or reaching out to the marketing campaign. As soon as Ballotpedia has verified the candidate, it provides them to a listing of candidates supplied to Twitter on a weekly foundation. Twitter is meant to then double-check the knowledge and provides the candidate the blue verify mark.

Levine has been keeping track of which 2020 candidates are verified and never, and reached out to The Verge Friday morning to level out Websites was nonetheless not verified, despite the fact that his major election is developing on March 17th. Levine has change into a watchdog of types for candidates’ Twitter badges.

She says she’s contacted reporters and other people at Twitter immediately about greater than a dozen 2020 candidates, a lot of whom are shortly verified following her inquiries. Levine, who leans towards Democratic candidates, says she has not seen any proof of bias in opposition to one celebration; she discovered Republicans and Democrats awaiting Twitter’s verification, generally a number of weeks after the candidate’s Ballotpedia web page was full.

Levine has a historical past of this kind of rabble-rousing, first coming into the general public eye by making an attempt to persuade New York Occasions to replace a decade-old story a couple of girl who ran an unregistered pet charity. Margaret Sullivan, who was the Occasions’ public editor on the time, called Levine “one of the crucial persistent folks I’ve ever are available contact with.”

Levine says she has stored after Twitter in regards to the verification course of as a result of she believes it ranges the enjoying subject. “Verification of candidates is essential, each to confer legitimacy and credibility of candidates — and likewise to make sure structural benefits on Twitter, e.g., search placement,” Levine writes in an e-mail to The Verge. “Within the age of dystopian disinformation, validating candidates and their messaging is extra essential than ever.”

Twitter admits the rolling course of has some lag time between when candidates are registered with Ballotpedia and when Twitter verifies them. Twitter paused its basic verification course of in 2017, after it was criticized for verifying the account of a white supremacist. The corporate says the objective in verifying major candidates is to keep away from giving unfair benefit to incumbents in major races, who normally have increased visibility than challengers.

The election labels, which Twitter launched in 2018, present particulars about what workplace a candidate is operating for, and proved common with candidates throughout the midterm elections, Twitter says. Starting March third, in any other case generally known as Tremendous Tuesday, the platform will carry again the official election labels for candidates who qualify for the final election.

Picture: Twitter

Verifying candidates is one a part of Twitter’s bigger mission — generally profitable, generally much less so — to forestall misinformation in regards to the 2020 elections from spreading on its platform. Simply earlier than the Iowa caucuses, Twitter launched a device for US customers to report situations of voter suppression. A drop-down menu lets customers select “it’s deceptive a couple of political election” or “it intends to suppress or intimidate somebody from voting” as choices. And on March fifth, Twitter is predicted to unveil its media manipulation coverage geared toward curbing using fabricated movies and pictures on the platform.

For its half, Twitter says its objective with verifying major candidates is to verify voters have as a lot correct, unbiased details about candidates as attainable. “Our whole course of from its inception — verifying candidates and the election label program — has been centered on being nonpartisan,” stated Twitter spokesperson Nicholas Pacilio.

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The 10 Best Outdoor Ping Pong Tables 2020

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hen the climate turns good, no one desires to be caught inside, so it could be nice if we may take our favourite actions outdoors. Nonetheless, most indoor leisure gear does not maintain up effectively underneath harsh UV rays and the weather. Fortunately, these outside ping pong tables are ruggedly designed, so the entire household can take pleasure in some desk tennis within the contemporary air

1. Joola 11610

The online included with the Joola 11610 (about $829) has an adjustable rigidity system to ship an ideal setup. Its enjoyable colours ought to entice youthful family members to play just a few matches, and its powder-coated steel will stand as much as fixed rain publicity.

  • Offers a constant bounce
  • Wheels are skinny and flimsy
  • Doesn’t have levelers

2. Stiga XTR

Should you’re determined to get in a aggressive sport as quickly as potential, the Stiga XTR (about $549) is a savvy selection, because it arrives virtually completely assembled. It additionally folds up simply for storage, making it useful when house is at a premium.

  • Wheels are straightforward to lock into place
  • Leg levelers for uneven surfaces
  • Not very scratch-resistant

3. Killerspin MyT7 BlackStorm

The Killerspin MyT7 BlackStorm (appx. $999) makes it straightforward to mix the aggressive spirit of a match with the stress-free environment of an outside barbecue. You may get it prepared for gameplay or fold it up in seconds, and its clip-on web is stiff and durable.

  • Particular coating for uv safety
  • Pockets for the paddles
  • Would not ship the perfect bounce

4. Kettler Axos 1

Due to a weather-resistant aluminum prime, you’ll be able to benefit from the change of the season with out worrying in regards to the put on and tear it would trigger your Kettler Axos 1 (appx. $589). It is designed with sturdy metal legs and heavy-duty casters for reliable stability and straightforward relocating.

  • Locks securely into playback mode
  • Comes with a six-pack of balls
  • Meeting directions aren’t useful

5. Kettler Champ 5.0

The Kettler Champ (round $1175) is handled to a sophisticated powder coating course of, which makes it notably immune to corrosion and chipping. It comes with two paddles and balls, so you can begin enjoying as quickly as you get it arrange.

  • Features a heavy-duty cowl
  • Non-marring rubberized casters
  • Could take a number of hours to assemble

6. Cornilleau Pro 510M

Should you’re internet hosting a match at dwelling, opponents will know you imply enterprise once they see the hanging Cornilleau Professional 510M (about $1729). Its thick and secure legs ought to guarantee zero wobbling throughout play, and its body is constructed to outlive years of use.

  • Wheelchair-friendly ends
  • Sturdy stainless-steel web
  • Quite excessive price ticket

7. Joola Nova

A formidable worth for the standard of its craftsmanship, the Joola Nova (about $450) is regulation measurement’ actually, it’s an official USA Desk Tennis sponsor. It separates in two for compact storage, however that is additionally a draw back, as the place the 2 elements meet may be uneven.

  • Web attaches shortly and simply
  • Can be utilized on quite a lot of surfaces
  • Colour does not fade within the solar

8. Butterfly TW24B

The Butterfly TW24B (about $558) is right for the fanatic who desires to hone his or her expertise by practising alone earlier than enjoying with others. One aspect may be folded as much as create a perpendicular floor for bouncing your personal photographs again to you.

  • Rugged body is rust-resistant
  • Ten-year guarantee on prime
  • Accessible in inexperienced or blue

9. Goplus Midsize

Should you’re working with restricted house, then you definately’ll respect the Goplus Midsize (appx. $140). It is quite simple to assemble, light-weight sufficient for one particular person to maneuver, and, with out the web, additionally serves as a handy, multiuse desk for poker or different video games.

  • Straightforward on the pockets
  • Medium-density fiberboard prime
  • Security guards on all 4 corners

10. Cornilleau 500M Crossover

Chances are high you are not an expert participant, however it could be enjoyable to really feel like one. Even when your sport is not as much as snuff, you will look the half with the Cornilleau 500M Crossover (about $1648), which includes a sturdy laminate floor and enticing graphics on the edges.

  • Peak-adjustable legs
  • A glare-free prime
  • Giant eight-inch double wheels

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How to Record Calls on Your iPhone

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Our iPhones could also be superior sufficient to assist us order pizzas, hail cabs, and doc our heartbeats, however recording a easy cellphone name generally is a problem. It’s not so simple as tapping a button in your iPhone — a particular app is required to do it. There are many apps within the Apple App Retailer and companies on-line that promise to indicate you learn how to file calls on an iPhone, and whereas lots of them promote crystal-clear high quality free of charge, some fail to stay as much as these claims.

Furthermore, there are federal and state laws pertaining to the recording of cellphone calls. As a common rule, you shouldn’t run into any authorized hassle when you seize each events verbally consenting to the recording. Some states require that just one get together consent, nonetheless, so verify your state or native legal guidelines when you want additional clarification.

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We’ve scoured the web seeking the very best name recorders on your iPhone, attempting out some completely different strategies and apps, and have provide you with this checklist. Simply ensure you preserve it authorized.

Professional tip: The web site GetHuman is a superb workaround for recording customer support calls. The location permits you to notify a particular firm the place you’d like a rep to contact you.

How you can file an outgoing name with an iPhone app

If you would like the choice to file each incoming and outgoing calls, then your greatest wager is a name recording app. There aren’t very many good name recording apps on the market which can be free, however there are fairly just a few choices when you’re keen to pay just a few . We’ve examined out some name recorders, and we imagine the 4 choices beneath are the very best.

Rev Name Recorder (Free)Rev Call Recorder

You possibly can file incoming and outgoing calls in your iPhone with this free app, so long as you’ve got a U.S. cellphone quantity to register with. There’s no subscription and no lurking hidden prices right here, no restrict on the size or variety of conversations you’ll be able to file, and the standard is normally good. It really works by establishing a three-way name, so you need to merge within the recording line, however it’s pretty simple to do and you’ll obtain the audio file afterward and do no matter you want with it. Should you’re questioning why it’s supplied free of charge — Rev additionally presents a transcription service for $1 per minute, which is dealt with by human translators for superior accuracy. If you would like a free name recording app, then look no additional — that is the one first rate one out there.


TapeACall Professional ($11)

TapeACall Pro

Should you don’t thoughts paying for a good app, then you definately would possibly think about TapeACall Professional. For simply $11, you get limitless name recording time, no matter who or the place you’re calling, for one 12 months. The pricing is listed at $30 per 12 months for limitless calls. The works a bit in a different way than the opposite choices listed right here — for incoming calls, you provoke a recording by placing whomever you’re talking with on maintain for a second, and then opening the app and hitting the file button. When you do all this, the decision is merged and saved with a distant recording service. For outgoing calls, you open the app, hit file, then name whomever and merge the decision. TapeACall Professional doesn’t notify the opposite get together that you just’re recording the dialog. If you’re completed recording, you’ll be able to entry the saved audio file straight on your smartphone.


Name Recorder Professional ($10)Call Recorder Pro

You possibly can file incoming or outgoing calls with this app, however you need to first arrange a three-way name by placing your name on maintain, dialing within the recorder via the app, after which merging the calls, which is a little bit of a problem. Then again, it does imply you can begin recording calls which can be already in progress fairly simply. It’s a dependable service that makes it easy to handle your recordings, and you’ll obtain them and share them by way of SMS, electronic mail, Dropbox, and different apps. The $10 payment will get you 300 minutes, however it’s also possible to purchase 150 minutes for $5 or 30 minutes for $1.


IntCall Name Recorder

IntCall Call Recorder

Name Recorder helps you make and file nationwide or worldwide calls, information whole calls, and saves recordings in your cellphone. Your service have to be GSM and assist each maintain and convention calling. With pay-per-minute charges, IntCall could be a sensible choice relying on the nation you’re calling. The app operates by pre-paid credit score or pay as you go and makes the calls over the VoIP. The value of every name is calculated per vacation spot and minute. A devoted model of the app for this mode is named Name Recorder Pay As You Go. You can even get a weekly subscription calling by way of regular channels however in that case, you need to make a convention for the recording. Further minutes might be bought for $5, $10, or $20, and the fee per minute varies in every nation. We advise testing the value checklist before you purchase something, however most nations might be reached for 10 cents or 20 cents per minute.


How you can file an incoming name utilizing Google Voice

Should you’re searching for , free possibility and also you solely must file incoming calls, Google Voice could be for you, and it may possibly assist you filter out undesirable calls as effectively. You should port your cellphone quantity over to Google to get entry to the recording function and it may possibly’t file outgoing calls. This makes it relatively inconvenient when you’re hoping to file any conversations that you have to provoke, or when you like your present service. Learn our information on learn how to arrange Google Voice when you’re not acquainted with the app.

To start out recording incoming calls with Google Voice in iOS 13, you first must arrange an account. Simply go to and observe the directions. As soon as your account is up and operating, the subsequent step is to allow name recording so you’ll be able to file and mechanically save your dialog as an MP3 file.

Step 1: Navigate to the primary Google Voice homepage.

Step 2: Click on on Settings (gear icon) on the higher left-hand nook of the window.

Step three: Scroll right down to the Calls part and guarantee that Incoming name choices is turned on.

If you wish to hearken to recorded cellphone calls in your iPhone, you’ll must download the Google Voice app. With this app, you’ll be able to file incoming calls inside Google Voice by tapping the quantity four in your cellphone’s keypad through the name. Be sure you reply the cellphone inside the Google Voice app utilizing your Google Voice cellphone quantity — not the native iPhone cellphone app your cellphone quantity could also be linked to. This triggers an automatic voice notifying each events that the decision is being recorded. To cease recording, faucet four once more or finish the decision as you’ll usually. After you cease recording, Google will mechanically save the dialog so that you can hearken to later.

If every part is about up correctly, and you’ve got answered and recorded your name in your cellphone, you will note your recorded dialog listed below the Calls and Voicemail tabs. To hearken to the dialog, faucet the arrow and switch up the amount.

Google Voice recording

Additionally, you will get an electronic mail directing you to your dialog within the browser.

File utilizing an exterior voice recorder

Olympus TP-8 Telephone Pick-up Microphone

Should you don’t just like the strategies thus far, another choice is to select up a devoted voice recorder designed to plug straight into your smartphone’s three.5-millimeter jack or join by way of Bluetooth. Merchandise such because the Olympus TP-8 Telephone Pick-up Microphone ($14), an earpiece you put on that information each you and the caller, will do the job. In case you have a more recent iPhone, chances are you’ll want to make use of the lightning-to-headphone adapter. You may additionally think about the RecorderGear PR200 Bluetooth Cell Phone Call Recording Device ($109) if you would like one thing that connects wirelessly, or if you would like one thing greater high quality that plugs in by way of the headphone port, take a look at Techerific’s Digital Voice Recorder ($70 used).

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