KW 47: UN condemns US lifting restrictions on smart landmines, Samsung presents new smart monitor models, Four-bedroom smart home in Hong Kong


UN condemns US lifting restrictions on smart landmines: The United Nations has sharply condemned the Trump administration’s step of lifting restrictions on the deployment of „smart“ anti-personnel landmines. The anti-personnel landmines can be switched off or destroyed remotely rather than staying active in the ground forever, according to a White House statement. The new generation „non-persistent“ landmines could be deployed anywhere in exceptional circumstances, said the White House. Michelle Bachelet, the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, has taken a strong stand against the continued and increasing loss of life due to anti-personnel mines – in large part resulting from the use of improvised explosive devices (IEDs) that function as anti-personnel mines. She warned that the horror of anti-personnel landmines is their continued infliction of casualties on civilians, long after any conflict has ended – and the resulting impact in reducing people’s freedom of movement, access to agricultural land, and right to development.,

Samsung presents new smart monitor models: Samsung Electronics has announced the global availability of its all-new Smart Monitor, which it claims is the first monitor to combine over-the-top media services, mobile connectivity, and remote PC capabilities. Samsung is releasing the M5 lineup, consisting of a 27-inch size for $230 and a 32-inch size for $280. A 32-inch 4K monitor called the M7 is also coming that costs $400. It’s not as immediately eye-catching as the aforementioned Space Monitor, but it makes up for it with having more features. Like Samsung’s line of TVs, the Smart Monitor runs Samsung’s Tizen OS software and can connect to your Wi-Fi network to stream HDR10 content from apps like Hulu, Netflix, Apple TV, YouTube, and more without the need for any extra hardware connected. You can install other apps from the embedded app store, like Samsung’s Health app.

Four-bedroom smart home in Hong Kong: Voice-activated technology and space-saving furniture helped Sim-Plex Design Studio turn a two-bedroom home in Hong Kong into Smart Zendo, a four-bedroom apartment with hidden storage. Smart Zendo is in Hong Kong’s Coastal Skyline neighbourhood. The project has been shortlisted for Dezeen Awards 2020 in the small interior of the year category. Technology is everywhere in the apartment, but the interior designers deliberately made it less obvious, preferring a subtle approach rather than overtly futuristic placements.

Shanghai wins Smart City 2020 award: Shanghai has won the 2020 World Smart City Award at the digital edition of the 2020 Smart City Expo World Congress. The Chinese city’s Smart Shanghai – People-Oriented Smart City digital infrastructure project saw it become a “Dual Gigabit” city – achieving full 5G coverage in the downtown area and fibre coverage across 99 percent of the city. Its e-government initiative, an interactive tool for citizens that has over 14.5 million users, also received special commendation from the judges.

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Innovation: Huawei, Changan Automobile and CATL jointly creates high-end smart car brand
Sensor matrix: University of Kaiserslautern announces smart wheelchair
Sports: Start-up Straffr develops intelligent fitness band
Health: New York researchers are working on a smart toilet seat
Lilium: Munich-based air taxi startup wants to set up its first Vertippt in Florida


According to a survey by Statista Digital Market Outlook, out of a total of around 41.5 million households in Germany, a total of 7.2 million use a smart home application in their own four walls.


Work more efficiently thanks to the smart home office: According to a recent survey by the Munich Ifo Institute on behalf of the Family Business Foundation, employers are much more skeptical of home offices than employees. Employees in their own homes can use intelligent networking to make many processes more efficient than in the office. Language software can be used to help structure work processes. The room ventilation can also be adapted more individually to your own needs than in an open-plan office and thus combine efficient and healthy work. Last but not least, smart home applications help to reduce power consumption. After all, employees are paying for their own power in the home office. However, there are still legal uncertainties as to whether and to what extent the employer will have to pay for the workplace at home.

Who has the best Covid warning app? Not only did the development of the German Covid warning app take a lot of time, the result has been met with a lot of criticism. A comparison by the online magazine Capital shows that the apps in other countries are also not well received. In France, for example, only four percent of the population had downloaded the “Tous anti Covid” app by October, which is why President Emmanuel Macron had to say: “That didn’t work.”. A Covid warning app was available in Singapore much faster than in Europe. And the number of users, at around two thirds of the population, was well above the Western European average. 50 percent of the population now use an advanced token. Australia’s app “Covid Safe” has had little success. With a total of more than 27,000 Covid cases in the country, the app has only identified 17 cases.

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„The connection behind the app, the laboratories, the usability – that’s terribly bad. I get reports every day that this is not working. That people can’t even enter their report into the app, that the laboratories don’t report it.“
German digital politician Manuel Höferlin on the new and revised version of the Covid warning app.


Apple removes anti-Covid app from iStores: A contact diary to fight the spread of Covid-19 is now available as a German app. The aim of the applications is to simplify and accelerate contact tracking. However, Apple has now removed the app, which was created by German developer Stefan Trauth, from all iStores. The reason: The app contains a manual function for identifying contact persons in connection with Covid. According to corporate guidelines, these may only be published in the App Store by state institutions.

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