A Tech Company Is Using 3D Printed Houses To Combat Homelessness

“We need a quantum leap in affordability, speed and quality to reach families exponentially faster.”

Could 3D printing be the answer to homelessness around the world? A Silicon Valley-based charity organization is using the technology in hopes of solving the financial housing crisis that has left a billion people without shelter.

New Story teamed with Texas-based ICON Technologies, to build a 3D printer specifically for the purpose of constructing houses in developing countries. The printer, dubbed Vulcan, made its debut at SXSW on Monday (March 12).

“We need a quantum leap in affordability, speed and quality to reach families exponentially faster,” New Story wrote on its website.

The company recently printed a home for a community in El Salvador. It takes 12-24 hours to print each house, at a cost of around $4,000 a pop, which the company hopes to bring down from the current cost of $10,000.

New Story is seeking up to a million in funding: $400,000 in pre-funding the “first community of 100 printed homes,” and $600,000 to cover the next phase of construction.

“The big difference, between a developed world and developing world context is you have a much more limited set of materials to work with,” Jason Ballard, cofounder of ICON told FastCompany.com. “Number one, just because of access, you want to restrict your material mix to things that you could find very ubiquitously around the globe. And you also want to avoid expensive materials.”

New Story plans to print homes in El Salvador through 2019,  and hopes to “democratize the technology to other non-profits and governments to scale around the world.”

See the 3D printed home in the video above.

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Apple Testing Feature That Allows You To Retract Text Messages: Report

Texting regrets? There’s already an app for that but Apple reportedly wants to make the feature available to iMessage users.

The tech giant is rumored to be testing out a new iMessage feature that will allow users to unsend text messages, Business Insider reports. According to a post on Mac Rumors, the sender and the recipient would receive a notification that the message was rescinded.

The capability is supposedly being tested internally, and is one of multiple features that could potentially be included in iOS 14.

Additional features in development include the ability to mark a message as unread after opening it, and a capability to tag your contacts with their name and an @ symbol, similar to messaging capabilities on the popular Slack messaging application.

Apple’s iOS 14 update is slated for release in September following the potential release of the iPhone 9, which is expected to be delayed due coronavirus fears. The update will reportedly feature a triple-lens camera for the iPad Pro, an “augmented reality” application, a new Apple TV remote, and an application that will allow users to download apps for guided workouts that can be synced to Apple Music.

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An attendee takes a photo of the instagram logo during a press event at Facebook headquarters on June 20, 2013 in Menlo Park, California. Facebook announced that its photo-sharing subsidiary Instagram will now allow users to take and share video.
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Instagram Restricts Promotion Of Body Enhancing Products From Users Under 18

Instagram is putting a limit on the amount of body enhancing products exposed to users under 18.

According to Buzzfeed News, the platform will restrict promotional posts that center around cosmetic surgery and weight loss products for minors. The monumental move was partly inspired by actress and body activist Jameela Jamil who previously called out celebrities like Cardi B and the Kardashian family who promote products like diet detox teas to their very young fans.

"We want Instagram to be a positive place for everyone that uses it and this policy is part of our ongoing work to reduce the pressure that people can sometimes feel as a result of social media," Instagram's public policy manager, Emma Collins said. She also noted that changes will also take place on Facebook.

Wow that was fast. This Kim Kardashian flat tummy shake post from January is now only accessible if you're logged into Instagram and listed as over-18. pic.twitter.com/67rEv4uqpJ

— Ryan Broderick (@broderick) September 18, 2019

Rumors have circulated around updates for some time. Others included the elimination of Instagram's "likes" algorithm.

Users will also have the ability to report any posts that do not follow the latest guidelines, as reported by CBS News. 

In a world that is heavily influenced by social media posts, this looks to be a step in the right direction for body positivity and acceptance. For her influence in the decision, Jamil stated "Facebook and Instagram [are] taking a stand to protect the physical and mental health of people online, sends an important message out to the world.

 

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THIS IS HUGE NEWS. @i_weigh are changing the world together. After a bunch of shouting, screaming, and petitioning... we have managed to get the attention of the people at the top, and they have heard us and want to protect us. And this is just the beginning of our efforts. As of now, if you’re under 18, you will no longer be exposed to any diet/detox products, and for all other ages; all fad products that have bogus, unrealistic claims will be taken down and easy to report. I’ve been working with Instagram all year towards this, who were amazing to deal with, and they expressed that they passionately care about creating a safer space for us all online. This happened so much faster than I expected and I’m so proud and happy and relieved. WELL DONE to the many people who have been working towards this huge change. This is a mass effort. This is an extraordinary win that is going to make a big difference. Influencers have to be more responsible. ❤️

A post shared by Jameela Jamil (@jameelajamilofficial) on Sep 18, 2019 at 10:08am PDT

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Instagram Testing Feature That Hides Number Of “Likes” From Users

Instagram could be gearing up for a permanent change that would allow users to focus on content instead of the number of likes that each posts receives. The Facebook-owned social networking giant is testing a tool that hides the number of likes that each post receives and video views., making them only visible to the account holder.

“We’re currently running a test that hides the total number of likes and video views for some people,” the company announced on social media Wednesday (July 17). For now, Instagram is running the test in Australia, Canada, Brazil, Japan and three other countries.

“We want your friends to focus on the photos and videos you share, not how many likes they get. You can still see your own likes by tapping on the list of people who've liked it, but your friends will not be able to see how many likes your post has received,” the company explained in a series of tweets.

We’re currently running a test that hides the total number of likes and video views for some people in the following countries:

✅ Australia ✅ Brazil ✅ Canada ✅ Ireland ✅ Italy ✅ Japan ✅ New Zealand pic.twitter.com/2OdzpIUBka

— Instagram (@instagram) July 17, 2019

We’re looking forward to learning more about how this change might benefit everyone’s experience on Instagram.

— Instagram (@instagram) July 17, 2019

Jan Wong, an app analyzer who scopes out hidden codes from your favorite apps, discovered that the company was toying around with the feature in April. “Instagram is testing hiding like count from audiences,” Wong tweeted at the time.

The change could make for a big adjustment for social influencers who seemingly depend on numbers to measure their engagement. The same goes for general users who could potentially feel less pressure to garner a certain number of likes for each post.

 

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