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Author: engineering

Scientists clear the chatter of buck converters

Buck converters, also known as step down converters, are chatty Cathys. The systems produce less power than they receive, and the tracking signals in the output can get stuck—the result is a small but harmful frequency fluctuation. A research team composed of scientists from Golestan University, Concordia University, and Delft University of Technology has proposed a way to cut the chatter. The researchers published their study in IEEE/CAA Journal of Automatica Sinica (JAS), a joint publication of the IEEE and…

“Star Wars” fighting drones hitting the air

In this Tuesday, Aug. 29, 2017, photo, Jack Bishop, lead pilot for Propel, demonstrates the company’s new “Star Wars” Starfighter drone, unveiled during a media preview, in the Brooklyn borough of New York. Propel says it will start selling three “Star Wars” drones modeled after spacecraft from the original movies. The $179 items combine drones with online games, and up to 12 Star Wars drone pilots can battle each other. The latest chapter in the movie series, “The Last Jedi,”…

One way to help Hurricane Harvey victims

Photo Credit: Texas Military Department (Flickr) Hurricane Harvey hit Texas last Friday as a Category 4 storm. Although Harvey’s category was quickly downgraded, the storm lingered around for days, bringing 50 inches of rain to the greater Houston area. As someone who was born in Houston, it’s hard to see my former city hit with such destruction, and to know that many of my friends and fellow Houstonians are in need of help and assistance. Many families have had their…

Continuous integration for iOS with Nix and Buildkite

Austin Louden | Pinterest engineer, Core Experience Tens of millions of people use the Pinterest app for iOS every month. To ensure a high-quality experience for our users on Apple devices, we use continuous integration (CI) to test incoming code before it gets shipped. We recently adopted Nix and Buildkite in our CI infrastructure to make this process faster and more developer-friendly. By implementing these tools, we created a sandboxed development environment that allows engineers to make changes locally and…

Using Word2Vec to Power a Recommendation Engine – Square Corner Blog – Medium

By Nicole Mitchell & Joy Wang About Us Nicole is a rising junior at Rice University and Joy is a rising senior at University of Pennsylvania, and we are both software engineering interns at Square this summer. Square hosts an Intern Hack Week every summer, allowing interns the opportunity to implement our ideas for new features or tools. Below is a description of our Intern Hack Week project. Context At Square, we’re always looking for ways to leverage our large data…

Rapid release at massive scale | Engineering Blog | Facebook Code

Over time, the software industry has come up with several ways to deliver code faster, safer, and with better quality. Many of these efforts center on ideas such as continuous integration, continuous delivery, agile development, DevOps, and test-driven development. All these methodologies have one common goal: to enable developers to get their code out quickly and correctly to the people who use it, in safe, small, incremental steps. The development and deployment processes at Facebook have grown organically to encompass…

LogDevice: a distributed data store for logs | Engineering Blog | Facebook Code

A log is the simplest way to record an ordered sequence of immutable records and store them reliably. Build a data intensive distributed service and chances are you will need a log or two somewhere. At Facebook, we build a lot of big distributed services that store and process data. Want to connect two stages of a data processing pipeline without having to worry about flow control or data loss? Have one stage write into a log and the other…

Optimizing 360 photos at scale | Engineering Blog | Facebook Code

People have uploaded more than 70 million 360 photos to Facebook since we launched the feature last year. Facebook enables multiple methods for capturing 360 photos and videos, which allow people to share immersive experiences with their communities. If you own a dedicated 360 camera, like the Ricoh Theta S or the Giroptic iO, you can post from the camera directly to Facebook. And now most high-end Android and iOS smartphones have cameras with a panorama mode that can be…

How a bunch of bird brains led to the development of touch screens

There was a time during World War II when pigeons almost became the next war heroes… until scientists at NIST grounded them — thanks to some other winged friends. Credit: NIST Did you know that the origin and development of touch screen technology can be directly tied to one of the world’s most famous behavioral scientists and a bunch of pigeons? This strange and fascinating part of science history is highlighted in the latest NISTory video from the National Institute…

Tracking the 2017 Solar Eclipse

How did U.S. riders use the Uber platform during the solar eclipse of Monday, August 21, 2017? To find out, we collected trip requests of around 40 major U.S. cities (Figure 1) near the totality path and put our data visualization tools to the test. In this article, we showcase how the recent solar eclipse affected Uber ride requests by harnessing the visualization power of our deck.gl and Voyager data visualization platforms. Figure 1: We tracked ride requests for 40…