Stories are posted on the APRN news page. You can subscribe to APRN’s newsfeeds via email, podcast and RSS. Follow us on Facebook at alaskapublic.org and on Twitter @aprn.Download Audio2015 Permanent Fund Dividend is $2,072Josh Edge, APRN-AnchorageA record-breaking Permanent Fund Dividend was announced Monday, not from the Governor, but instead from 12-year-old student, because, according to Governor Bill Walker, the fund is really about the next generation. Shania Sommer, a 7th grader at Palmer Junior Middle School, is involved in the Alaska Native Science and Engineering program.Alaska Senators sponsor legislation to repeal “Cadillac” taxAnnie Feidt, APRN-AnchorageAlaska’s two U. S. Senators are co-sponsoring legislation to repeal the so-called Cadillac tax, which will impact high priced employer health plans starting in 2018. Because health care is so expensive in Alaska, the tax will have a disproportionate impact in the state.Hearings start on fighter jets coming to EielsonDan Bross, KUAC-FairbanksLocal hearings are happening this week on the planned basing of 54 F-35 fighter jets at Eielson Air Force Base. The sessions, in North Pole, Delta and Fairbanks, provide opportunity to comment on a draft Environmental Impact Statement on the basing plan.Washington opens criminal investigation into walrus deathsThe Associated PressThe federal government has opened a criminal investigation into the death of 25 Pacific walrus found on an isolated northwest Alaska beach. U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service spokeswoman Crystal Leonetti says agency investigators have not returned from the site at Cape Lisburne but that the case is now in the hands of the U.S. Attorney office. Initial reports last week said the walrus had been shot but the Fish and Wildlife Service refused to speculate on the cause of death until agency personnel had examined the carcasses.Starfish losing arms to diseaseJohn Ryan, KUCB-UnalaskaStarfish from Mexico to Alaska have been hammered by a wasting disease that causes their arms to melt and fall off. Sea stars in the Aleutian Islands have not been affected yet.Newtok feeling nervous about relocation timelineCharles Enoch, KYUK-BethelCharles Residents in the small coastal village of Newtok in Southwest Alaska have been preparing to move as erosion eats away at their village. A dispute over who has tribal authority slowed the process, but now that dispute has been decided by federal courts, a new set of tribal officials are getting the relocation effort underway again. But with climate change accelerating the erosion many are getting anxious that the move can’t happen soon enough.Tribal housing gets HUD grants to fight moldLori Townsend, APRN-AnchorageTribal housing in Alaska will benefit from more than $1 million in grants to address concerns over mold. An announcement was made announced by Housing and Urban Development or HUD. The $1.6 million in grants were awarded to three tribal entities in the state specifically for mold remediation or prevention in more than 200 tribal homes through improved windows, doors and exteriors.UAS to offer marine transportation degree programLisa Phu, KTOO-JuneauStudents and mariners will soon be able to get formal marine transportation education without leaving the state. The University of Alaska Board of Regents last week approved a new marine transportation degree program at the University of Alaska Southeast.UAA engineering program attracting more Native studentsDaysha Eaton, KYUK-BethelAs college freshmen dig into their studies at the state’s universities this fall, more Native faces are appearing in science and engineering classrooms. That’s thanks to the Alaska Native Science and Engineering Program, or ANSEP. Yup’ik students from the Yukon Kuskokwim Delta are among them.
Editors’ Note: Updated at 1:44 p.m. ET with additional comments from Google.A lot of the rumors about the upcoming Pixel 4 have focused on how the phone’s front cameras and sensors will support a face unlocking feature and gesture-based controls. But Google might be cooking up something big for the Pixel 4’s rear cameras, too.An image posted to Instagram late last week by Google’s director of design shows off a seating area ringed by shadows. Dig a little deeper into the comments on that Instagram post as both This Is Tech Today and 9to5Google did, and you’ll find Google’s Claude Zellweger seemingly confirming that the shot was captured by a Pixel phone using a 20x zoom.If you’re familiar with Google’s Pixel lineup, you’d know that the currently available Pixel phones aren’t capable of a 20x zoom — the best they offer is software-aided 2x zoom. So it wouldn’t seem to be a crazy leap to assume that the photo above was taken with a Pixel 4 showcasing an upcoming feature for the new phone’s cameras.RECOMMENDED VIDEOS FOR YOU…logoCreated with Sketch. The 2019 Kindle OasisThe 2019 Kindle OasisMore VideosVolume 0%Press shift question mark to access a list of keyboard shortcutsKeyboard Shortcutsplay/pauseincrease volumedecrease volumeseek forwardsseek backwardstoggle captionstoggle fullscreenmute/unmuteseek to %SPACE↑↓→←cfm0-9Next UpTech This Out – Warner Streaming Service, Galaxy Note Renders And Nintendo Switch Lite02:14OffAutomated Captions – en-USAutomated Captions – en-USLive00:0001:2601:26 Alleged Pixel 4 Photo Leaks with Strangely Slim BezelsThat assumption would be off-base, though. In a subsequent comment to his post, Zellweger says that the image was actually captured by a Pixel 3a, Google’s lower-cost smartphone. “Just to be clear: This shot was taken with a Pixel 3a. Zooming + cropping did the trick,” Zellweger said.Still, that shot looks better than any zoom we could capture with a Pixel 3a. That’s leading to a new assumption that the photo is showcasing improved camera software that could find its way to Google’s current phones as well as the Pixel 4.What this means for the Pixel 4Improved zoom capabilities — even those aided by software — would certainly be in line with what we know about the Pixel 4. Thanks to a leak posted by Google itself, we know that Google’s next phone will feature multiple cameras. One of those lenses is likely to be a telephoto shooter that would support an optical zoom.Currently, the Pixel 3 offers a Super Res Zoom feature, which taps into Google’s prowess with artificial intelligence to fill in the details of a digitally zoomed-in photo. The result is zooms that generally look about as good as what you get from an optical zoom, though once you zoom past 2x, the quality of the shot falls off.Since the Pixel 4 would have multiple lenses — a 12-MP/16-MP combo, according to specs leaked last week — it seems likely that the Pixel 4 would feature a hybrid blend of digital and optical zoom in which Google’s software is augmenting what the telephoto lens captures to get even closer to a shot without degrading the quality of the image.Cameras are an increasingly important part of a smartphone. Google used its software skills to land the Pixel 3 on our list of the best camera phones, at least until the quadruple-lens Huawei P30 Pro came along. Samsung just released its Galaxy Note 10 phones, and though the camera hardware looked a little underwhelming on paper, testing firm DxO gave the Note 10 Plus its highest rating, further raising the pressure on Google to keep pace with the Pixel 4’s camera. What’s more, phone makers are increasingly boosting the zoom capabilities of their handsets. The P30 Pro, for instance, features a 5x zoom, with software able to help scale that even further. The new Oppo Reno has made a 10x hybrid zoom a central part of its identity. Samsung has developed a 5x zoom camera that looks like it’s headed to next year’s Galaxy S11.This latest leak gives us a hint as to how Google plans to top what rival phone makers are doing with their cameras.Which Camera Has the Best Zoom?Pixel 4’s Air Gestures Could Change EverythingMost Anticipated Phones