Imagine the future 900 years from now, where our planet is part of the United Empire Of Earth, and it’s really hard to become citizen of that empire. This is the plot of the videogame “Star Citizen”, which is currently being developed as a crowdfunded project.
Open world video games have been around for decades, but now they are becoming more popular than ever. Gaming consoles that can connect to the internet cost less than 200 US dollars, and home PCs are more powerful than ever, meaning players can enjoy more and more immersive experiences - from driving around the streets of Los Santos in Grand Theft Auto to exploring millions of unique planets in No Man’s Sky. See what the gaming industry has to offer when it comes to virtual worlds and learn about upcoming game releases. Listen to our special series “Open World Computer Games: From “Sandboxes” To Endless Galaxies”.
Chased by heavily armed soldiers, John Marston wants to protect his family and is eventually killed in a stand-off against a firing squad. But the death of the protagonist in the video game Red Dead Redemption did not stop the developers from continuing to work on this spectacular Western series.
It’s hard to imagine how long it might take to create a universe. But when it comes to virtual galaxies in computer games, you may actually get a straight answer. It took US indie developer Hello Games a little over 3 years to make an imaginary galaxy with 18 quintillion unique planets in “No Man’s Sky."
If you look at the world map, you will never find Liberty City, San Andreas, Los Santos or Vice City. But for millions of gamers worldwide who love the Grand Theft Auto series, each of these locales is more than a name – it’s a separate open world “sandbox” full of fun and adventure.
Have you ever wondered how life in the universe could look like in the year 3000? Elemental Games – a group of software developers from Vladivostok - tried to answer that question almost a thousand years in advance by releasing “Space Rangers” – a game that gained a mass following in Russia and abroad.
With the introduction of artificial neural networks, humanity discovered that computers can learn, act and even create on their own. Even though AI is in its early stages of development, pretty soon machines will be able to surpass humans in terms of skills and intelligence.
Imagine going to a dentist and being treated by a robot. No matter how strange it sounds, according to recent study, there is a 90% probability that the job of a dental technician, as well as other positions, including cooks, butchers and masons will eventually be performed by machines.
While many traditional image editing computer programs such as Adobe Photoshop rely mostly on working with filters and layers, they don’t allow the PC itself to analyze the visuals. Recently software engineers learned how to give computers more creative power.
In September of 2016, Google announced the launch of the Neural Machine Translation system. The technology was meant to improve the accuracy of automated translations. But things went far beyond the tech giant’s plan, as self-learning computers invented their own modus operandi.
With the advent of movies like The Terminator and War Games the idea of machines turning against their creators embedded itself in society. However, at that time there was no technology that could enable computers to learn quickly and effectively. Nowadays, artificial neural networks present humanity with new possibilities... and new dangers.
In 2014 most European leaders unanimously agreed to impose sanctions on Russia over the situation in Ukraine. But by the end of 2016, the opposition against punitive measures in the EU member states has been growing.
You won’t find any Dutch Gouda cheese or Douwe Egberts coffee in Moscow's supermarkets. Since 2014 they've been banned in response to EU's anti-Russian sanctions. For Dutch exporters and Russian consumers it’s a no-win situation.
The Netherlands was among the EU states that supported anti-Russian economic sanctions in 2014. But it wasn’t the country’s politicians, who paid the price of restrictions. The real economic loss was shared by the country’s dairy farmers, fruit and vegetable growers, who were banned from the Russian market as Moscow imposed a retaliatory embargo.
In 2014 EU leaders slammed Russia with economic sanctions over the situation in Ukraine. Two and a half years later the restrictions are still in place. Find out why France and Germany want to punish Moscow even more, and why Dutch, Belgian and other farmers had to picked up the tab. Discover the true cost of sanctions, and why more and more people in Western Europe want to abolish them. Listen to our special series “The EU Sanctions Spiral: Who Spins It And Who Is Paying The Bill.”
On December 15th, 2016, EU leaders decided to prolong economic sanctions against Russia for 6 more months. Pressured by Germany and France, 26 other EU states supported the sanctions without discussing them. However, it’s not the EU’s political elite, but Europe’s farmers and exporters who are paying the price of the restrictions.
In the final weeks of 2016, the EU governments decided to prolong economic sanctions against Russia. The previous set of Ukraine-related restrictions was due to expire on January 31, 2017, but it seems that some members of the EU were in a hurry to extend them.
Even though some graffiti artists and creative groups in big US cities still work illegally, their paintings are admired by locals and tourists alike, leaving a powerful message and becoming an integral part of the urban landscape.
Sometimes it takes more than one person to create a masterpiece. Many writers, composers and movie directors love collaborations. Their goal is to educate, entertain, and sometimes even confuse the audience. Learn how a group of journalists wrote a deliberately bad novel under a made-up name and received rave reviews. Discover why robots are taking over human jobs and discover the plusses and minuses of human-android teamwork. Listen to our special series “Creating Together: The Art Of Collaboration.”
With thousands of robots already working at plants and factories worldwide, the idea of collaboration between humans and AI-powered machines is now a reality. But with the increasing role of robotics, there are also fears that human workers, including robot operators, will one day lose their jobs.
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