Tech Digest daily roundup: Tesla issues Optimus robot update

Tesla Optimus Humanoid Robot. Image: Tesla

Having first revealed the new Roadster some six years ago and the Cybertruck in 2019 – but having thus far delivered, er, neither – it might not surprise you to hear Tesla’s released a progress report about… robots. Last year Musk stated in an earnings call that Tesla’s Optimus humanoid robot project was – and we’re paraphrasing – its most important product development priority for 2022. And now there is footage (see below) to show us the fruits of Tesla’s focus on bots. One in which robots walk casually past a dude building a Cybertruck. Just one single dude… might go some way to explaining the delay. Top Gear 


Critics have branded the UK government’s delayed £1bn package of support for the semiconductor industry as “insignificant”. Semiconductors, or chips, are inside everything from phones to cars and the government has just unveiled a new 10-year strategy. But it is facing allegations it is not enough – the US and EU have announced support closer to $50bn (£40bn). The PM said the plan would help turn the UK into a technology superpower. Details were released shortly after Prime Minister Rishi Sunak agreed a partnership on semiconductors with Japan. BBC 

The government must act to prepare for artificial intelligence (AI) to hit the workplace “like a freight train”, the boss of one of Britain’s leading energy companies has told Sky News. Greg Jackson, founder of Octopus, says the adoption of AI across industry will ultimately improve the workplace and spawn new roles, but the startling pace of development means millions of jobs could be at risk in the short-term. Octopus has seen huge benefits from the adoption of generative artificial intelligence in its customer service operations, with 44% of customer emails being answered, at least in part, by AI just seven weeks after it was rolled out. Sky News 

The owner of Jaguar Land Rover is reportedly close to picking Britain to build a gigafactory to supply its electric cars with battery packs. Tata is choosing between Spain and the UK for the site, which would help secure the future of carmaking in the country amid widespread fears over the impact of a looming ban on new petrol and diesel vehicles. The Times reported that Chancellor Jeremy Hunt has offered Tata £500m of subsidies if it builds its gigafactory in Britain. The support package includes lower energy costs, a cash grant, and covers the costs of revamping a power network around the site that JLR has eyed in Somerset. Telegraph 

Toyota is pinning its hopes on the high percentage of zero-emission driving performed by its hybrids to persuade the UK government to allow the company to keep selling them here after 2030, head of UK manufacturing Richard Kenworthy has said. The government has said only combustion-engined cars with a “significant zero-emission capability” can be sold in the UK after 2030 until the end of 2034, but it has yet to define what that means. Autocar

Google Workspace utilities are popular document editing solutions in their own regard, but they need more optimizations and tools in their arsenal to take the battle to rivals like Microsoft Office tools and Notion. Google is constantly toiling at it, and the latest addition gradually permeating through Workspace is called Smart Canvas. It is now on Google Docs, enabling the creation of custom building blocks and collapsible content sections. If you haven’t heard, Google’s Smart Canvas makes workflows more intuitive and seamless for regular Workspace users. Android Police

Chris Price
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