Tech Digest daily round up: Facial recognition tech used in Swansea


More arrests are due to be made this week and facial recognition will be used to trace others following violent disorder in Swansea, police have said. Seven arrests have already been made after cars were burnt out and windows smashed in Mayhill on Thursday…Seven officers were injured during the incident on Waun-Wen Road and families described being trapped in their homes. “We’ve identified a further eight people and we have a team of specialist officers who are working relentlessly to bring these offenders to justice,” Mark Travis, Assistant Chief Constable of South Wales Police told BBC Radio Wales. “We will be making more arrests this week.” He added: “Today we will be using our facial matching technology and we’re going to use that to identify everybody. It works really well with masks. “It takes key points on your face, around your eyes and key features and it compares them to previous photos we have. BBC

A potential home for a new UK Tesla factory will hit the market this summer when the site of carmarker Ford’s former Bridgend car plant in South Wales is put up for sale. The engine plant, which employed 1000 people, closed its doors for the final time last September after 40 years of operation and is due to be marketed this summer by property consultant CBRE, industry sources said. The timing of the sale comes amid fevered speculation that Tesla billionaire Elon Musk is planning a major investment in the UK after a flying visit last weekend. The Department for International Trade’s Office for Investment sent out an urgent request for potential sites for a new 250ha car factory earlier this month, putting regions on alert for a potential investment. Telegraph 

Covid-19 infection has a distinct smell that can be detected by specially trained dogs with up to 94% accuracy, UK research suggests. The findings, which have not yet been peer-reviewed, are based on six dogs who tested more than 3,500 odour samples donated by the public and NHS staff. The canines were able to sniff out samples from people who were infected with coronavirus but were asymptomatic, as well as those who had low viral loads. They were also able to identify infections caused by the coronavirus strain that was dominant in the UK last summer as well as the UK (Kent) version of the virus which appeared later in the year. Professor James Logan, head of the department of disease control at London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine (LSHTM), who led the project, said: “What was great was the dogs that have been trained on the original variant transferred to the new (Kent) variant. They could detect the new variant without any additional training.” Yahoo!

Google Photos fans are in for a shock next month. Until now, Google Photos users have been able to upload endless pictures to the cloud without having to pay a penny for the privilege. While Google has always had a 15GB limit for high-resolution, uncompressed picture and videos, it’s had no problem letting us all send our smartphone snaps (16MP or under) to its online servers for free. Needless to say, this has helped to make Google Photos one of the most popular photo management tools available. For those worried about losing all of their family or holiday pictures if they misplace (or  break) their smartphone, the endless, unlimited cloud back-up is a big plus. But that’s all changing. Unfortunately, from June 1, 2021 onwards, all images – no matter what quality you’re uploading – will now eat into that 15GB allowance. Once users have hit that limit, they will then have to pay to add more storage via Google’s One service. Prices for extra space start from £1.59 per month for 100GB, £2.49 for 200GB or £7.99 for a whopping 2TB. Express 

Chris Price
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