As the week draws to an end, let's recap the top 10 things that happened in the tech sector during the week.

1) ISRO Launches Solar Calculator App

ISRO launched an innovative app called the Solar Calculator app using which anyone can accurately and easily calculate the benefit of installing solar panels at any location in the Indian subcontinent. The app is available on the web and for the Android platform, and can prove to be extensively beneficial when it comes to setting up photovoltaic solar panels.

The app calculates the solar potential of a particular area by using data processed from Indian satellites, including the Insat-3D, the Insat-3DR and the Kalpana-1. The solar energy potential of a particular location is shown to a user in kWh/m2 or mJ/m2.

2) IBM Has A ‘New’ Focus on Indian Startups

The Indian startup ecosystem, which is currently the third largest startup ecosystem in the world and has the potential of becoming number one someday has tempted IBM to align a new focus on the ecosystem and speed up its efforts to interact with it.

Speaking to Gadgets 360, Nipun Mehrotra, IBM’s Chief Digital Officer for India and South Asia threw light on how until now the giant had been doing these efforts in various nooks and corners across the country but under the new organisation that IBM has become under him, they have realigned their focus on the startup ecosystem and the goal is now to provide a more centralised support structure for the startup ecosystem.

The technology giant is optimistic that it can help young entrepreneurs and startups with a number of things such as India stack integration etc. Further, it can also extend a helping hand in interfacing them with the various government agencies as well as businesses that can be their customers.

3) Here’s Why Apple Threatened Uber To Have Removed from the App Store

US-based car-hailing giant Uber has been in the headlines since its conception, sometimes for good reasons and sometimes for bad reasons, but lately it has been the latter. Recently, an article published in The New York Times has alleged that Apple CEO Tim Cook had once threatened to delete Uber’s iOS app from the App Store, when he found out that the company had successfully found a way to identify individual iPhones, even once the Uber app was deleted from the phones.

This practice of finding individuals phones even when they have deleted the app is called fingerprinting, and is strictly prohibited by Apple. In order to ensure that Apple doesn’t get a whiff of its activities, Uber decided to geofence Apple’s headquarters in Cupertino, changing its code so that its activities would remain hidden from the Apple Employees. Unfortunately, despite Uber’s several efforts, Apple being the technology giant it is ending up unearthing the malpractice, which led to the 2015 meeting of the two CEOs wherein Cook sternly told Kalanick to end the practice immediately or stand the risk of getting the Uber app removed from the App store permanently. The article mentions a source according to whom the Uber CEO was particularly shaken by Cook’s scolding, and decided to put a an immediate end to the practice.

4) Facebook Opens Its New Deep Learning Framework To All

The recently concluded F8 developer conference in San Jose, California saw Facebook announcing Caffe2, a new lightweight, modular, and scalable deep learning framework to the world. Built on the original Caffe, Caffe2 is a trendy type of artificial intelligence (AI) that has been designed by keeping expression, speed, and modularity in mind.

According to experts, deep Learning possess the potential of bringing significant breakthroughs in the field of machine learning and artificial intelligence. Caffe2 aims to provide developers an easy and straightforward to experiment with deep learning first hand. When a developer is getting started with deep learning, Caffe2 can help them in understanding the workflow of how they can create and deploy their deep learning application.

5) Introducing ‘WikiTribune’ – A New Tool By Wikipedia Founder To Battle Fake News

Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales has announced Wikitribune, a news platform that will bring together journalists with a legion of fact-checkers. According to the platform, its main aim is to ensure that people all around the world are lifted of this curse called fake news and they only read true fact-based articles that can contribute towards having a real impact on both local and global events.

Though Wikitribune will be publishing news stories written by professional journalists, but it will give internet users the ability to propose factual corrections and additions if any, almost similar to the model being followed by Wikipedia. All the changes and additions suggested will be reviewed by volunteer fact-checkers towards the end.

6) India To Force Tax Duty on Bitcoin

India is considered as an important country for Bitcoin’s growth and future. The demonetisation drive sprung upon the nation late last year helped boost bitcoin usage like never before. With ATMs and banks running dry, people of the second largest population on Earth turned to digital currencies and mobile wallets to quench their cash thirst.

Concerned over the adverse impact that virtual currencies such as bitcoin can have on the Indian consumer, the Indian government recently setup a committee to examine the existing framework on digital currencies in the country. And now, according to the latest reports coming in, the Indian subcontinent is on its way to officially declare Bitcoin as cash before the end of summer and force a duty on the digital currency as the solution to its acknowledgment.

7) 74% Indians Prefer Self-Driving Cars, Says IBM

A survey conducted by tech giant IBM has revealed that Indian consumers show a high level of interest in the intelligent, intuitive and self-driving cars.

Titled “Auto 2025”, the survey was conducted across 16 countries and shows that Indian consumers are very interested in all aspects of automated car functioning such as self-driving, self-healing, self-configuring, and self-integrating. Indians selected self-driving capabilities most often with 74% of people preferring it. Even the least selected self-integrating capability is appealing to 69% of Indian consumers, said the survey.

The survey also said that 97% of Indian respondent want to own or drive a car in the next ten years, and among them — 35 years and older respondents expect their use of personal cars as their primary mode of transportation to drop by 12% by 2025, but anticipate their use of car & ride-sharing will double.

8) BlackBerry KeyOne will be available next month

Blackberry is all set to win everyone's heart all over again. According to a press release from TCL, the first TCL-manufactured BlackBerry KeyOne smartphone will go on sale in the US and Canada starting next month. The phone, which runs Android 7.1 Nougat, features a physical keyboard, which was the signature feature of BlackBerry smartphones launched years ago.

9) Anybody Can Now Make A Google Assistant Gadget With This New Toolkit

The week saw tech giant Google announcing the availability of its Google Assistant SDK. This means, now anybody can download and run the Google Assistant on a gadget of their choice. In fact, it will run well even on Raspberry Pi 3 devices and also on Linux. With this move, we can look forward to a future where we could see a big number of consumer devices running Google’s voice assistant — taking on Alexa as the go-to chat interface for gadgets.

10) Samsung Has A New Auto-reply App For Avoiding Distracted Driving

Distracted driving is the number cause of accidents on roads all around the world. But, technology giant Samsung is now trying to counter this problem by launching a new app called the In-Traffic Reply. The app has been designed to help people avoid using their smartphones while driving or biking by automatically sending preset replies when in motion.

The app, which is currently running in beta in the Netherlands, depends on the phones' GPS sensor to figure out whether the user is driving at which point calls and texts will be automatically responded to with either a default reply of “I’m driving, so I cannot answer at the moment,” an animated image, or a custom message.

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