TechNation: Local Ad Firm Takes on Google, Facebook

Israeli-made robot takes cues from locusts ; VW partners with Israel’s Mobileye

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Investors monitoring stock market movements at a brokerage house in Shanghai, China, July 6, 2015.Credit: AFP

Local ad firm takes on Google, Facebook

An Israeli firm seeks to challenge Facebook’s and Google’s control of the targeted online advertising market. Great Digital unveiled a new data management platform, the first of its kind in Israel, that is says will enable advertisers to reach segmented audiences on sites that are not on Facebook’s and Google’s ad networks. Online targeted advertising is based on data collected by “cookies” stored in users’ web browsers   that contain their searches and online behavior. Until now, only Google and Facebook were able to offer targeted online ads in Israel, pulling ad money away from local advertising firms and web publishers.  (Nati Tucker)

Israeli-made robot takes cues from locusts 

A locust-like robot could prove to be an inspired leap into the future of autonomous surveillance and emergency response systems. Inspired by the locust’s jumping mechanism and elastic energy storage, Tel Aviv University researchers designed a tiny robot made from carbon rods, steel springs and 3-D printed plastic pieces. It weighs under 23 grams and is about 10 centimeters long. The robot can jump a remarkable 3.5 meters said lead developer Prof. Amir Ayali, due to its structure and energy storage, which along with its motor makes it capable to withstand high accelerations. Unlike drones that can be airborne for up to about 30 minutes, the locust robot is powered by a lithium battery that can get up to 1,000 jumps on a single charge. Ayali said the robot could be easily mass produced, since its parts are cheap and it is easy to manufacture. He estimated the price of a robot at $100. (Reuters)

VW partners with Israel’s Mobileye 

Volkswagen announced a new partnership with Mobileye, an Israeli company that is a leader in camera technology used in advanced safety features such as automatic braking or lane departure warning. Under an agreement signed Tuesday, Mobileye’s systems will beef up the mapping systems VW cars will use to enable autonomous driving, VW brand chief Herbert Diess said. “We always have to look at partnerships,” Diess told Reuters. “This world is changing so much faster than our traditional world” of automotive suppliers. (Reuters)