AI News, Mediapart reports in English

Huawei Mate 20 X review: Fantastic beast, if you can find one

Huawei has never been shy of pushing boundaries and trying new things that could be construed as either a stroke of genius or the worst idea in the history of tech.

Whether it's a fitness tracker which also happens to be a Bluetooth earpiece you wear on your wrist, or small tablets that are capable of making phone calls, there have been a bunch of questionable products over the years.

It's part of the Mate 20 smartphone series - which also includes the regular Mate 20 and Mate 20 Pro - but is marketed as a portable gaming system, given its huge 7.2-inch screen.

The bezel around the 7.2-inch screen on the front is virtually non-existent, save for some very slim framing on the edges, the tiny dew-drop notch on the top and a subtle chin on the bottom.

It bears a striking resemblance to the regular Mate 20 - just one that's been zapped with a morphing laser beam and made the phone grow to epic proportions - with its flat dew-drop notched screen and the fingerprint sensor on the back.

There's a hugely capacious 5,000mAh battery inside, along with the Kirin 980 processor (Huawei's most powerful to date), as well as some custom liquid cooling components made of graphene film and vapour chambers.

Even with three hours of gaming to test the screen, plus a smartwatch connected, the Mate 20 X still comfortably got to bedtime at 11:30pm with 40 per cent of its battery remaining.

This Kirin 980 processor, coupled with its custom cooling tech and the 6GB RAM, is more than capable of tackling even the most graphically intense games without any really noticeable frame-rate dropping or stuttering.

You can switch on a completely dark interface to save battery if you like, and you get the choice between using the standard Huawei home screen where icons litter the home screen, or switch on the more traditional Android app drawer.

Plus, you can choose from a few different primary navigation modes: with the option of having standard Android buttons, gestures only navigation, or a floating button on the screen that can be tapped, swiped and repositioned that can do it all.

There's also a feature called Digital Balance, which is essentially a rebadged version of Google's Digital Wellbeing Android Pie feature, allowing you to set daily screen time limits, as well as individual app timer limits.

It doesn't just pull in light over a longer exposure, it enhances the details and contrast to make a sharper image - all from a handheld shot that combines multiple exposures in real-time.

So, where the regular camera gets really noisy and blurry in some challenging low light conditions, night mode alleviates those - although it can be guilty sometimes of over-sharpening.

The Mate 20 X's camera uses the same AI-based technology (that's artificial intelligence, if you're wondering) to asses what's in the scene and adjusts settings to match, offering very similar results to the other Huawei Mate 20 series phones.

Again, in daylight, we found it sometimes exaggerated the contrast and sharpness to excess, but it does a great job with HDR (high dynamic range) to ensure that contrasting light in the same scene is balanced out - so you can still get blue skies, clouds and green grass when there are heavy shadows and bright skies.

In the Nevada desert, fish join tomatoes to yield bumper crops

Dayton Valley Aquaponics, in the high desert east of Dayton, showcases this circle-of-life system designed to use less energy and labor, produce less waste, and yield healthier, more plentiful harvests than traditional methods of raising fish or farming tomatoes.

Although aquaculture (raising fish) and hydroponics (growing plants in water) are settled practices, uniting the two in aquaponics still is a new industry, with only about 500 commercial aquaponics companies in the country.

Like the pairing of tilapia and tomatoes, it might seem offbeat, even bizarre, to establish a cutting-edge aquaponics outfit in the Nevada desert, with its low rainfall, scouring winds, roasty summers, and winter snows that often persist into June.

Nothing does the job as well as the sun.” What’s more, as “climate change affects traditional agricultural land and crop cycles,” Birba added, “aquaponics has the potential for real long-term success in the mainstream agricultural marketplace.” Especially in areas like Northern Nevada that aren’t natural breadbaskets, could this be the future of farming?

The elimination of the seasons (leading to increased production) and other aquaponics practices (leading to lower energy costs and better crop quality), Birba said, helps to make Dayton Valley “ecologically and economically sustainable.” These practices are evident as soon as you enter the greenhouse.

And forget typical mushy tilapia that tastes of dirt and indifference – “low-quality fish raised in low-quality conditions in far-away lands,” as Birba put it.

More: Why you must try Reno's new farm-to-table pizza This hardy Egyptian breed, native to an arid climate like the high desert of Nevada, 'has good, firm flesh,' said David Holman, the Campo executive chef who is a fan of Dayton Valley tilapia.

Beyond the tilapia tanks, ranks of tomato plants shimmy up nylon trellises, reaching 7 feet high, with chilis, cucumbers and greens filling the spaces in between.

If you’ve crashed into heirloom tomato toast swiped with oozy burrata at Liberty Food & Wine Exchange or maneuvered your mouth around a Bently Ranch burger piled with slicer tomatoes at Overland pub in Minden or navigated the chicken with heirloom tomato risotto at Bistro Napa in the Atlantis, you can thank Dayton Valley Aquaponics.

Our long-term viability depends on being accessible on price point.” As they plan for 2019 and 2020, the folks at Dayton Valley said they're evaluating if Pacific salmon should be harnessed for aquaponics, something that would require expansion.

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