Your next Domino’s pizza might arrive in a ‘self-driving’ Ford

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If you’re one of a lucky few Michiganders within range of one specific Domino’s Pizza location in Ann Arbor, your next pizza could show up in a self-driving car… sort of.

Ford and Domino’s announced Tuesday that the two companies have partnered up to gauge customer reaction to self-driving cars. Instead of just asking folks on the street how they view autonomous vehicles, Ford wants to integrate one of its cars into the pizza delivery process.

“Honey, the pizza is here… I think.”


Ford

After ordering Domino’s in the Ann Arbor area, the customer may receive a phone call asking if they’d like to participate in this study. If the recipient says yes, Domino’s will load the customer’s order into Ford’s self-driving car. The recipient will receive a notification when the vehicle arrives, at which point they’ll have to walk outside, input a code into a device on the side of the car, and then they can retrieve the pizza from a special window designed to keep the pizza warm on its trip.

The whole point of this exercise is to gauge customer reaction to self-driving cars. After all, it’s not every day that a person will walk outside and see a car with multiple spinning lidar units, a whole bunch of sensors and a vinyl livery that very clearly spells out the car’s intentions.

While it would be pretty cool if the car actually drove itself to the customer’s home, that’s not the case. Due to regulations regarding commercial use of self-driving vehicles, the car will not actually drive itself — there’ll be a Ford safety engineer and researchers in the front row, although the windows will be tinted dark enough to where the customer cannot easily see them. The car is wholly capable of driving on its own, but humans will be in control, which is a bit of a bummer.

But again, it’s not about the act of actually programming a car to handle pizza delivery. Both Ford and Domino’s will use this pilot program to gauge customer reactions. For example, are people fine with adding a few extra steps (literally!) to their pizza retrieval process? Will people get excited about not having to tip a self-driving car? Will robots scare them into refusing to leave the house? Those are the questions the partnership wants to answer.

This isn’t the first time Domino’s has experimented with dedicated pizza delivery vehicles. The company worked with General Motors to create the DXP delivery vehicle, which was a Chevrolet Spark outfitted with a dedicated pizza warmer.

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‘Stranger Things’ Season 2 Character Posters Arrive Online

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Netflix

It feels like ages since we last visited Hawkins, Indiana. Granted, that might be the spot-on ’80s touches playing tricks on us, but we’re just we’re dang excited to binge another season of Stranger Things in one big gulp. A fresh batch of posters for season 2 of the Netflix should amp up that anticipation even more.

The streaming supernatural series has unveiled a collection of posters featuring some familiar faces (minus a certain somebody) and even a few one new ones, but they all have one thing in common. No one seems to be feeling particularly comfortable with whatever the hell’s taking place.

“We’re going back to Hawkins,” warns the first in a series of ominously captioned Stranger Things account tweets. “A place where the curiosity door never closes. A place where new adventures await us. And it’s only getting stranger.”

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Ranveer Singh and Deepika Padukone arrive together for Ritesh Sidhwani‏’s birthday bash – Ranveer Singh and Deepika Padukone’s alleged love life

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After what seems like aeons, Ranveer Singh and rumoured lady love Deepika Padukone, made heads turn as they made a joint appearance at filmmaker Ritesh Sidhwani‏’s birthday bash on Saturday night. The alleged couple, who are currently working together on the Sanjay Leela Bhansali film ‘Padmavati’, made the paparazzi click happy as they arrived together with friends in Ranveer’s car.
Sporting an eccentric rainbow-hued sequined jacket with a hat, Ranveer arrived for the bash after making an appearance at the ongoing Lakme Fashion Week. While her rumoured beau shone bright, Deepika complimented him with a subtle white vest, loose tresses and a pair of jeans.
After the bash, the two got comfortable in the back seat as a driver took the wheel to drop them and their friends home.

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HMS Queen Elizabeth: carrier due to arrive in Portsmouth

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HMS Queen ElizabethImage copyright
PA/Stefan Rousseau

Image caption

The 65,000-tonne ship set sail from Rosyth dockyard in June

The UK’s new £3bn aircraft carrier is due to arrive in its home port shortly.

HMS Queen Elizabeth is due to sail into Portsmouth at about 07:10 BST following extensive preparations at the naval base.

The 65,000-tonne ship has been undergoing sea trials since setting sail from Rosyth dockyard in Fife, where it was built, in June.

The 900ft (280m) long carrier cannot currently deploy planes but flying trials are due to begin next year.

Image caption

People gather at The RoundTower in Portsmouth for HMS Queen Elizabeth’s arrival including some who designed and built the ship

Spectators have gathered on the shoreline to watch the ship’s arrival and a no-fly zone has been put in place to prevent the flying of drones around the harbour.

Road closures are being put in place in Old Portsmouth, Southsea seafront and parts of the city centre.

Isle of Wight, Gosport and cross-channel ferry services also have altered timetables.

Preparations for the arrival of the future flagship of the fleet, and its 700 crew, saw more than 20,000 items ranging from a human skull to sea mines dredged up from Portsmouth Harbour.

  • 280m Flight deck length

  • 700 Crew currently on board

  • 155,000 miles Length of electrical cable inside the ship

  • 162db Volume of foghorn

PA

The Ministry of Defence said specialist dredging vessels had removed 3.2m cubic metres of sediment – the equivalent to 1,280 Olympic swimming pools – during the dredging operation carried out to deepen the harbour mouth to enable the Queen Elizabeth to reach Portsmouth naval base.

In a statement earlier this month, Defence Secretary Sir Michael Fallon heralded the ship’s impending arrival, and declared it would be deployed “across the seven seas, using her strike power to deter our enemies”.

The ship has been undergoing sea trials off the Scottish coast and sailed with the USS George HW Bush and her carrier strike group, during Exercise Saxon Warrior earlier this month.

F-35B Lightning fighter jets are due to make their first trial flights from the carrier’s deck next year with 120 aircrew currently training in the US.

Image copyright
Stefan Rousseau/PA Wire

Image caption

Flying trials are due to begin next year.


Analysis: Jonathan Beale BBC News correspondent

HMS Queen Elizabeth is still far from being a fully functioning aircraft carrier. But she now looks and feels less of a giant construction project and more like a warship. For the last seven weeks she’s been undergoing sea trials.

They’ve tested everything from the propulsion system to the sewage processing plant. The ships five galleys have been churning out more than 3,000 meals a day for the 700 crew and additional contractors on board.

According to the Captain, Jerry Kyd the tests have gone “really well” for what he admits is a “prototype”. But even he suggests that they’ll need more manpower when she’s fully operational. The slightly larger US Nimitz class carriers have a crew of more than 4,000.

HMS Queen Elizabeth’s first deployment is still a long way off. Though helicopters have been landing on her massive deck- the size of three football pitches – it will be another year before the new F35s will begin flight trials. And HMS Queen Elizabeth won’t be fully operational until 2023.


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Syrian militants, refugees arrive in Syria rebel zone from Lebanon

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BEIRUT (Reuters) – Syrians who left Lebanon after a ceasefire between Hezbollah and Nusra militants on Thursday started crossing into a rebel-held area of Syria where they will settle, Lebanese media reported.

As part of the same agreement, captured Hezbollah fighters began to be released at the same crossing point between government and rebel areas in northwestern Syria.

About 7,000 Syrians, including Nusra militants and refugees, left the Arsal district on the border between Lebanon and Syria as part of a ceasefire deal that also involves the handover of captured Hezbollah fighters.

The ceasefire took effect last week, just days after Shi’ite Hezbollah and the Syrian army launched an offensive to drive Nusra Front and other Sunni militants from their last foothold in the border area between Lebanon and Syria.

A convoy of more than 100 buses arrived on Thursday at Saan in Hama province, where they began to cross the front lines from government territory, Hezbollah-affiliated al-Manar television reported. The buses left Arsal on Wednesday evening.

Al-Manar broadcast what it said was live footage of the exchange, showing a line of buses slowly driving on a narrow road towards the crest of a low, brown hill and an ambulance travelling in the opposite direction.

Hezbollah is an important ally of the Syrian government in the war against rebel groups that include the Nusra Front. Eight of its fighters were being held by Nusra in Arsal, of whom three were freed on Wednesday and more on Thursday.

Syrian Army soldiers loyal to Syria’s President Bashar al-Assad forces are seen near a bus in Fleita, Syria August 2, 2017.Omar Sanadiki

The crossing point at Saan gives access to the main rebel enclave in northwest Syria, including Idlib province and large parts of Aleppo province.

Hezbollah fighters on Thursday moved into the areas around Arsal that Nusra abandoned under the ceasefire, a Hezbollah military media unit reported.

The Lebanese army is expected to soon begin an assault on an Islamic State pocket in the same area and on Thursday it shelled the militant positions there, a security source in Lebanon said.

The head of Lebanon’s internal security service, General Abbas Ibrahim, said in a television interview that the army was preparing its offensive but was willing to negotiate a surrender by the jihadists.

He added that the only other armed group still in the mountainous border area, Saraya Ahl al-Sham, which holds a tiny area on the frontier, would withdraw in the coming days.

The transfer of militants along with large numbers of refugees has echoed deals struck within Syria in which Damascus has shuttled rebels and civilians to Idlib and other opposition areas.

Such evacuations have helped President Bashar al-Assad recapture several rebel bastions over the past year and are criticised by the opposition as amounting to the forced transfer of populations seen as sympathetic to the opposition.

Reporting By Angus McDowall; Editing by Larry King

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