Click highlights from 2017 – BBC Click

20:17 the year of curious cats haunting
Holograms and trigger-happy trekkers
hi there it’s time to look back on the
year in tech and as 2017 fades away we
could tell you about all the technology
news that’s happened the hacking the
launching the automatic driving but that
would be just like last year and come to
think of it the year before that
so we’d prefer to share with you some
unforgettable memories from our year on
click as we’ve traveled far and wide to
bring you some extraordinary moments and
we start with a personal highlights for
me back in October we traveled to Japan
and we got rare access to see how robots
are helping with the dangerous task of
cleaning up the Fukushima nuclear power
plants after its meltdown in 2011 scary
I’ve worn plenty of protective suits in
my time but they’ve always been to
protect the environment from my body
this time it’s different
we’re going inside unit five which is
identical to the units which were
wrecked by the explosions as you can
imagine it’s really hot inside being
food it’s a confusing jumble of walkways
and machinery and it’s difficult to
appreciate that somewhere in here is a
seven storey high tank of water called
the primary containment vessel the PCV
and now it’s time to go right underneath
the reactor they think what happens
after the meltdowns is that the molten
fuel just burns through the bottom of
the PCV and came down here on to what’s
known as the pedestal that’s where they
think the fuel is now it’s difficult
enough getting around this place on foot
now imagine trying to remote control a
robot through this after the whole place
has been mangled by an explosion oh yes
and do it in the dark
this is scorpion its mission was to hunt
for filth in unit 2 now time is of the
essence for any Fukushima robot the
radiation will eventually damage and
disable its cameras rendering it useless
but the entire mission can also be upset
by something far more basic down this
ramp to film the molten fuel at the
bottom but he got caught halfway down it
never made it so they didn’t get any
footage or any evidence of where the
fuel was in unit 3 the water’s much
higher so they had to think of another
way to get a robot into film what was
going on and that’s where the mini some
fish came in well actually that’s where
the mini some fish came
built to fit through this 15 centimeter
pipe mini sunfish is a tiny underwater
robot with five propellers two cameras
and four human operators 300 kilometers
away from Fukushima into Sheba’s
Yokohama R&D center Mike came
face-to-face with the star of the
investigation after two months of
practice in a duplicate of the flooded
pedestal in July this year mini sunfish
was successful in finding melted clumps
of material that could be fuel debris on
the pedestal in unit 3 decommissioning
the site could take 40 years and it may
cost 8 trillion yen
those little robots have a lot riding on
their tiny backs
ever wondered what cats get up to when
no one’s there
meet Roxie and Zara who seemed agreeable
to taking part in some gadget testing if
you’ve ever wanted to watch talk to or
even play with your cats when you’re not
with them then this could help once the
device is connected to your home Wi-Fi
you can log in via the app anywhere you
can get your phone online there’s a
laser game to play snacks at the tap of
an icon and a function to proudly make
and share videos and cat snaps
well this rather unusual looking setup
works in quite a similar way there’s a
camera so that you can see the cats
remotely also the ability to give them
food wherever you are plus this toy
which is apparently something that cats
might like to play with Zara and Roxie
were possibly slightly intimidated by
the jolting of the feathery thing and
the app was extremely temperamental
making setup a rather tedious experience
the pet paste smart collar has been
around a little while now and is
available for cats and dogs it allows
owners to keep an eye on temperature
pulse breathing rate heart rate
variability and even the positions of
pet is in so could be particularly
beneficial if there are health concerns
or an injury to keep an eye on meanwhile
there seems to be a game of cat and
mouse going on here
the latter played by a remote control
rodent although it actually consists of
the mouse chasing the cat which probably
says it all about my days filming
that was Lara with some pretty
disinterested interviewees whether you
go you can’t win a more now you know us
will report from wherever we find a good
story and there have been so many great
ones so many successful ones in Africa
this year back in June Dan Simmons went
to Tanzania to see the first stages of
what could be a global revolution in
education we’re traveling a long way
from any town or city to visit some of
the 200 children in Tata village in
northern Tanzania
I think they’re gonna need more tablets
Tata is one of about a hundred and fifty
villages in Tanzania chosen as the
testbed for the Global Learning XPrize
within a few months 4,000 tablets will
be given out the challenge to teach
seven to 11 year olds to read write and
do maths over the next year the most
effective app will win 10 million
dollars the prize here though will be
much more valuable older children can
walk up to four hours to get to and from
school for younger ones like
seven-year-old Amina
that’s simply too far she’s been lucky
she’s one of those that’s been chosen to
take part in the XPrize challenge at the
start she’s not seen a tablet before so
she’s not used to touching screens and
when it comes to reading she doesn’t no
more than one or two words in a sentence
but John who’s with the project thinks
the tablet will help her eventually to
read fluently so the problem is that
there are about 60 to 100 million kids
who have no access to school because
school is too far and then you’ve got
250 million more who go to school and
who leave without ever having learned to
read or write a word and these are kids
in Botswana in Boston in in in you know
in Brighton it doesn’t matter kids go to
school all over the world and they go
they don’t learn and why is that and so
that’s the question that we’re trying to
address you know in our greatest desire
every single child on planet Earth has
access to a world-class education in the
palm of her hand we’re hoping to be back
next year to see how the teams get along
but for now it’s time to say goodbye
we’ve brought some biscuits to say thank
you and suddenly the difficulties the
team will face when they arrive become
clear with just 20 or so tablets per
village there simply won’t be enough for
everyone to take part to reduce
potential jealousy the tablets will be
locked to only one the educational
software but
everyone wants one our village mama has
been chosen to settle any disputes and
the scheme’s partners UNESCO will be
asking some other important questions
about tablets – we are doing assessment
of the social and emotional impact of
such learning because we expect quite
some criticism from their side we are
engaging with the psychologists
anthropologists educationalists to try
to understand what does it do to the
child’s is that an option that is
ethical because children go to school
they are socialized also it’s not only
the cognitive learning it’s learning
much more is learning to be part of the
group that was done in Tanzania next
we’re off to Germany with Kate who’s
found an elevator that goes sideways
the picturesque town of Rockville
Germany home to fearsome dogs chocolate
Fox buildings and a 246 meter tower
housing the tallest observation deck in
Germany but this Cour isn’t just about
great views built by elevator company to
some group it has 12 lift shafts running
inside it one is used to transport
passengers to the top the others to test
the latest in elevator technology so our
inside the area is going is in the core
of the tower and only a few people
really have the chance to see what we
have built what is running there an
elevator without any ropes so this is
something revolutionary instead of steel
ropes the cabin is carried by linear
motors the same tech that drives Japan’s
bullet train at 500 kilometres an hour
as well as eliminating the speed and
height restrictions of today’s tech this
allows passengers to travel sideways as
well as up and down just like Willy
Wonka’s fantastical elevator in Charlie
and the Chocolate Factory behind the
scenes behind the car we change this
exchanger 90 degrees get prepared for
the horizontal movement while people are
entering and leaving and as soon as the
doors close we can go sideways to the
next shaft and this is the most
important thing that we come back to a
circulating system so reinventing the
using this circulating pattern means a
lift shaft could hold ten or more cabins
much more efficient than the single up
and down ride today’s elevators are
limited to and this will only become
more important when we start looking at
elevators reaching perhaps a thousand or
more meters into this guy that was Kate
going sideways and so are we now we’re
off to the place where China makes the
world’s tech the city of Shenzhen where
last month I got exclusive pre-launch
access to see how a new smartphone is
born they make loads of different types
of phones in this Factory so to keep the
five tier secret from all the other
workers everything happens behind the
blue shroud of secrecy are you ready
thank you come in
welcome to production line 27 the phone
starts life is just a tiny camera there
and then it’s gradually assembled around
this u-shaped
production line which means by the time
it gets to the end it’s a fully featured
phone just about there
this is the reason China has come to
dominate electronics manufacturing a
ready supply of a disciplined relatively
low-cost workforce each person here has
one unique job which requires
concentration speed and precision a
single speck of dust caught in the
camera lens and the finished phone will
be rejected what I found most surprising
about this is it’s all people I would
have thought with this kind of high
precision job these phones would have
been built solely by machines but pretty
much this is where an unlucky few phones
are pulled off the production line to
chec extreme tolerance elsewhere other
test phones escaped that big plunge but
instead are dropped 5000 times each
others have their charging ports wiggled
and buttons pressed 10,000 times with
the launch over 1 plus will nervously
await the first reviews and more
importantly the advance orders and they
will decide whether these people will be
joined by hundreds more or not
a fascinating glimpse behind the curtain
there in China and now it’s time to
leave Earth entirely for a few minutes
to remember how the Kliq crew explored
the final frontier in VR virtual reality
game Star Trek bridge crew brings
together up to four players each taking
a different role on the bridge of a
starship oh my goodness mark
we don’t have time for sightseeing
though as we receive a distress signal
from a stricken vessel if you transfer
the survivors here I don’t know it’s at
this moment that the action takes a turn
which will appeal to Star Trek super
fans its d5 one Cruiser so it’s a
Klingon d-flat Cruiser yeah okay target
it feels like it’s social VRS it’s best
barely communication it’s a must if you
don’t have it you’re not gonna complete
the mission great for a team-building I
thought well actually their lives on the
line for a minute get a couple of sticky
moments there but I think we managed to
put it put it back and keep it together
as a crew the result was a successful
mission now one thing we love to do on
clique is to look at how things might
change significantly in the future and
one area that we think is about to pop
onto the scene and possibly on so many
people’s plates is lab-grown meat I’m
talking burgers steaks and fish got a
taste for it well back in July Kat
Hawkins visited the cultured food
capital San Francisco to see what’s
cooking I’ve come to this lab in the
heart of Silicon Valley to visit
impossible foods they claim to have
invented the food of the future a
completely meatless meat made entirely
of planets impossible foods found that
the key ingredient that gives meats its
characteristic I&E taste is he a
molecule found in most living things and
especially in animal muscle luckily it’s
also found in plants so this is your
magic ingredient right this is your
plant face blows right it provides the
flavor the explosion of flavor you get
the turn the difference the difference
between white meat chicken with a beef
burger the company has recently flipped
the switch on its meatless meatpacking
factory as it ramps up production this
will eventually make four million
burgers a month and the next aim is to
move into chicken pork and lamb
but it’s one thing being a scientist who
is enthralled by food Tech and another
to be a chef using the ingredients
produced on your carefully crafted menu
I think we’re worried way too much meat
in general so it’s a good way to be as
close as possible to what meat looks and
taste the impossible burger is now the
only one Rocco has on his menu and he
sells 250 of them a week it seems like
at this stage it might be a novelty for
Silicon Valley diners with money to
spend but of course as always the true
test is in the tasting okay it’s about
to happen
it’s really good the texture is just
like meat it doesn’t taste like it makes
beef like mushrooms I know there’s no
mushrooms in there what comes across
talking to Rothko though is how
important it is for his customers that
the flavor is close to me while still
being ethical but why if you could serve
up actual animal flesh without a single
creature being harmed
that’s what several companies including
this small tech startup in the heart of
Silicon Valley are working on they plan
to grow actual fish from stem cells
Phylis foods takes a small sample of
cells from a real fish and cultures it
up one cell can theoretically become one
ton of fish meat but they’re not there
yet will be on the market in three years
with products that are a new version of
fish that people haven’t had before and
then in five to six years we’ll have
steaks and filets just like the fish
that you currently eat at a supermarket
just like what’s inside of a fish that
you’d normally see in the ocean
cat Hawkins reporting back in the summer
now from California to the Netherlands
where Nick quack witnessed a dance with
a new hologram effect today
choreographers and dancers of NDT are
working with a new medium for artistic
expression they’re taking two excerpts
from the show called stop motion and
adapting it to include holographic
projections it’s a really but Reedy
almost an IMAX type experience without
the need for gothic you know every
detail has been carefully crafted
they’re projecting a fallen white giant
and dust onto a black backdrop playing
with the themes of light and dark and
destruction technology needs to embrace
the art but not be sticking out or by
itself it needs to help is like a glove
to the art to the suppression the
holographic illusion is created with the
help of two very high-end projectors and
a special lightweight mesh screen by
playing out videos on the front mesh and
back wall
it creates an optical illusion of 3d
depth for the performers that’s actually
a really good rig to work with because
they can see the projections on this
side whilst they’re onstage performing
with other systems you don’t really get
that same wall tantaran position stand
by lighting music cue projection and
after all that globe-trotting I have to
say there’s no place like home there’s
no place like home there’s no place like
home there’s no place like yep banks
voting systems and the NHS weren’t the
only ones to have been under attack in
2017 even in my own castle
I am hands full with this lot we even
lost our first guest on the show sorry
Ken and in 2018 we’ll be going back into
battle again reporting from wherever we
find the best tech from around the globe
and at home we’ll see you next year

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