General known for sharp questions will be Trump's new top security adviser

General known for sharp questions will be Trump's new top security adviserWEST PALM BEACH, Fla./WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. President Donald Trump on Monday named Lieutenant General Herbert Raymond McMaster as his new national security adviser, choosing a military officer known for speaking his mind and challenging his superiors. McMaster is a highly regarded military tactician and strategic thinker, but his selection surprised some observers who wondered how the officer, whose Army career stalled at times for his questioning of authority, would deal with a White House that has not welcomed criticism. "He is highly respected by everybody in the military and we're very honored to have him," Trump told reporters in West Palm Beach where he spent the weekend.


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Bouche à Oreille: Michelin mixup makes modest French café a star

Bouche à Oreille: Michelin mixup makes modest French café a starLast week, Bouche à Oreille, a café in Bourges, central France, found itself suddenly in possession of a Michelin star. The eatery, which serves hearty dishes of beef bourguignon and lasagna to its clientele of locals, was taken aback by the arrival of swarms of new visitors. Thanks to their identical names, and eerily similar street addresses, the Michelin website had listed the Bourges café on its website by mistake.


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Here’s how badly the Galaxy Note 7 destroyed Samsung’s reputation in the US

Here’s how badly the Galaxy Note 7 destroyed Samsung’s reputation in the US

It goes without saying that the spontaneous combustion of Samsung's Galaxy Note 7 was a big deal, but rarely do we get an opportunity to see the impact of tech gaffes on public sentiment quantified. A new Harris Poll ranking the "reputation quotient" of the 100 most recognizable brands in the United States provides just that, and the picture isn't good one for Samsung. In fact, it's pretty dire.

In last year's reputation ratings, Samsung landed in the seventh position out of 100 companies, beaten only by Amazon, Apple, and Google on the tech side of things. Fast forward to today, and Samsung has found itself barely squeezing into the top half of the chart with the number 49 spot on the rankings.

As big of a drop in the charts as it has taken, it's interesting to note that Samsung's actual reputation rating only actually dropped from 80.44 to 75.17. Harris considers a rating of 80+ to be "Excellent," and groups ratings of 75 to 79 into the "Very Good" category. Additionally, both Apple and Google took hits in their ratings as well, though not nearly as drastic — Apple fell from 83.03 to 82.07 and Google dipped from 82.97 to 82.00.

The study is conducted via interviews with US adults, each of which are asked to rate companies that they are familiar with. According to the methodology of the research, each company received a rating from approximately 300 respondents. The timing of the study wasn't particularly favorable to Samsung, having been conducted from late November to mid December of 2016, which was precisely when Samsung was in the midst devising a way to remotely kill off the Note 7s that were still in the hands of owners.


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2017 Mercedes-Maybach S550 4MATIC

2017 Mercedes-Maybach S550 4MATICA perfectly restrained chauffeur-mobile.


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Leftist hopes to avoid runoff in tense Ecuador vote

Leftist hopes to avoid runoff in tense Ecuador voteLeftist Lenin Moreno crossed his fingers Monday for outright victory in Ecuador's presidential vote as impatience grew over a delay in publishing full results that could force a runoff. Sunday's election was a test of the legacy of outgoing President Rafael Correa, Moreno's more hardline ally and an outspoken critic of the United States. Moreno, 63, hoped to top 40 percent of the vote with a 10-point lead.


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Shocker! World’s first self-driving car race ends in a crash

Shocker! World’s first self-driving car race ends in a crash

The world's first race on a professional track involving self-driving cars ended, not surprisingly, with a crash. As part of the Roborace competition held in Buenos Aires over the weekend, one of the two self-driving Devbot vehicles involved in the race slammed into a wall after miscalculating a particularly sharp turn.

While the Devbot vehicles weren't going all out, they weren't exactly driving at a leisurely pace either. At their best, both cars were driving in excess of 100 MPH, with one reaching a top speed of 115 MPH at one point.

In addition to racing around the track at high speeds, it's worth noting that each car can communicate with the other as to prevent them from crashing into each other. Unfortunately, the racetrack wall proved to be an insurmountable foe.

As for the software malfunction that caused the crash, Roborace's Justin Cooke explained what happened in an interview with the BBC:

One of the cars was trying to perform a manoeuvre, and it went really full-throttle and took the corner quite sharply and caught the edge of the barrier.

It's actually fantastic for us because the more we see these moments the more we are able to learn and understand what was the thinking behind the computer and its data.

Indeed, for as far along as self-driving software and hardware has progressed, it's clear that there's still a lot of work to be done before self-driving cars can replace human drivers completely across all driving environments.

While the DevBot vehicles are designed such that they "can be driven by a human or a computer", the versions used in the race over the weekend did not have any humans inside. Photos of the crash can be seen here.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aSbSUeKEj00


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