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20 Pictures of South Pacific Islands You Need to Visit

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It’s been a long year so far, hasn’t it? And you know what that means? No, it’s not time to have another cocktail; it’s time for you to take a vacation. In fact, we think that this year has been so rough, that perhaps its high time you take that bucket-list kind of vacation that you’ve long been dreaming of… And, since we’re in the business of reading minds through the Internet, we’re willing to be that we’ve got a pretty good idea about what that bucket-list destination just might be…

We’re talking about islands in the South Pacific, of course! (We know, given that you’re reading this, you already know what we’re going to be exploring… So much for that third eye of ours!)

In the pictures below, we’re going to show you some of the most beautiful islands that there are to explore in this incredibly beautiful region of the world. As you go through each pictures, try to imagine yourself enjoying what you’re looking at. Wherever you most see yourself is where you should take your next vacation. Will it be Bora Bora? Will it be Tahiti? There’s only one way to find out… Read on to explore the South Pacific islands you need to visit!

1. Easter Island

This one may be a little obvious, but make no mistake that Easter Island is a place you need to see.

2. Moai

You’re familiar with the Easter Island statues, well they’re known locally as Moai, and they’re beguiling.

3. Super Remote

This is where you want to go if you really want to escape it all; Easter Island is one of the most remote inhabited places on the globe!

4. Tetiaroa

Wouldn’t you know that this beautiful spot was originally a place where Tahitian royalty would vacation?

5. Hollywood Royalty

So beautiful and historic is this island that none other than Marlon Brando decided to purchase it!

6. Marlon!

If you want to experience the finest accommodations here, you’ll have to book your stay at The Brando.

7. Laucala Island

If you’re looking for the very best of Fiji, then look no further than the stunning Laucala Island.

8. Super Exclusive

You’ll really get to experience the areas natural beauty here, as there are only 25 villas on the island.

9. Super Large

And there’s plenty to explore, as this is the largest privately owned island in the entirety of the southern hemisphere.

10. Tikehau

Here’s a place where you can experience white and pink sand beaches in equal measure.

11. Something Fishy

The waters just off of this beautiful island are home to one of the richest collection of fish in the entire world.

12. Stay Awhile

If you want to experience this world treasure, you’ll want to book your stay at Tikehau Pearl Beach Resort.

13. Taha’a

As a part of the Society Islands, Tahaa offers some of the best that French Polynesia has to offer.

14. Vanilla Island

If you find Taha’a too hard to pronounce, you can just call it Vanilla Island, which it is named for… You guess it! Its vanilla harvesting.

15. La Taha’a Island Resort & Spa

If you’re looking to check this gorgeous place out, then this is absolutely where you’ll need to stay.

16. Bora Bora

Increasing in popularity by the day, Bora Bora has practically become synonymous with the South Pacific.

17. Resplendent Beauty

And it’s easy to understand why, because Bora Bora is easily one of the most beautiful places in the world.

18. Stay for Awhile

And it doesn’t hurt that it’s home to some of the most luxurious hotels, like the St. Regis and the Four Seasons, each of which offer overwater bungalows.

19. Rangiroa

This small string of islands is like something you’d see in a picture book; it’s that gorgeous!

20. Scuba Away

If you’re looking for a beautiful place to go scuba diving, then this is the place for you in the South Pacific.

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World’s First All-Weather Autonomous Bus Rolls Out in Finland

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Most autonomous vehicles require great weather and clear roads to function, which means they can’t drive during certain, less pleasant times of the year. But a new robot bus has been designed to drive even in heavy rain, snow, or fog — and it’s rolling out in Finland.

The Gacha, which features tech by Finnish autonomous-driving company Sensible 4 and a design by Japanese retailer Muji, is the world’s first autonomous shuttle bus for all weather conditions.

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Gacha’s autonomous driving technology ensures the vehicle’s superior positioning, navigation, and obstacle detection performance thus allowing autonomous driving throughout the year regardless of the environment and conditions, according to a statement from the City of Helsinki.

Gacha is 14.7 feet long, 7.8 feet wide, 9 feet high — it can seat 10 passengers with space for six additional standing adults.

Photo Credit: Justus Hirvi / Bonzu / MUJI

The four-wheel-drive all-electric autonomous vehicle is capable of maximum speeds of 25 miles per hour, plus the electric motor has a range of 62 miles with wireless charging offered as an option.

After its unveiling in Helsinki, Gacha is set to drive and take passengers in three Finnish cities as part of real-life traffic tests. Sensible 4 and Muji are finalizing plans for the first Gacha fleet, which is expected to roll out in 2020.

Photo Credit: Justus Hirvi / Bonzu / MUJI

In Finland, weather has been an important factor in opening the market for autonomous buses or robotaxis. Sensible 4 has focused in testing and validating self-driving technology test in the arctic Lapland conditions.

“We are developing these vehicles so that they can become part of daily transportation service chain. Autonomous vehicles can’t become mainstream until their technology has been insured to work in all climates,” said Harri Santamala, CEO of Sensible 4.

Photo Credit: Justus Hirvi / Bonzu / MUJI

Design-wise, Gacha boasts Muji’s minimalist aesthetic. Gacha is designed with no front or back, and features a LED light belt, made from the combination of the headlights and communication screen, while the seating follows the soft, rounded square shape of the bus.

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This Little Robot Blasts the Bacteria in Your Hotel Room Bed

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We all know the drill: A hotel room may look tidy, but there’s bacteria lurking in those neatly pressed sheets. In a 2012 study, researchers found 81 percent of hotel room surfaces sampled had some fecal bacteria.

But before you start stressing about your next vacation, there’s a little robot that can help. Ventur Studio’s CleanseBot is a travel-sized cleaning robot designed to sanitize and disinfect hotel room surfaces — no chemicals used.

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Equipped with with artificial-intelligence tech and 18 sensors, CleanseBot uses multi-directional, ultraviolet germicidal irradiation — UV-C lamps — to blast away 99.99 percent of germs and bacteria on any surfaces, but most importantly, on your hotel bed.

The UV-C light has also been proven to help prevent the spread of airborne viruses, according to Ventur Studios.

Photo Credit: CleanseBot/Ventur Studio

To blast away the bacteria on your bed, just set the robot down on the bed for 30 or 60 minutes, and it works to sanitize and disinfect sheets and blankets. Its sensors can detect obstacles, allowing it to change directions and climb over materials.

You can then pick up the bot in handheld mode to sanitize electronic devices, light switches, hard surfaces, children’s toys, and even pet toys. When in handheld mode, sensors automatically switch off the upward-facing UV-C light.

Photo Credit: CleanseBot/Ventur Studio

Weighing less than half a pound, Ventur Studio says the CleanseBot kills 99.99 percent of bacteria, germs, and dust mites. In addition to its three cleaning modes (under blanket, climbing, and handheld), CleanseBot is also a power bank able to charge devices with its 3700 mAh battery.

Ventur Studio currently has patents for the CleanseBot, including technology that keeps the tiny machine from falling off a bed, and another for the wheel technology, which allows the robot to go over any type of material or surface.

Photo Credit: CleanseBot/Ventur Studio

On Jan.7, CleanseBot hit the ‘million club’ on Kickstarter — 10,474 backers had pledged $1,187,861 to bring the project to life.

The Kickstarter sale price is $99, and all orders and units are expected to ship in April 2019.

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This $800 Robot Suitcase Will Follow You Around Airports

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Wheeling clunky luggage before a flight can be stressful. Thankfully, ForwardX Robotics, an autonomous-focused company, developed a better travel companion: A robot suitcase that follows you around airports.

On Monday, ForwardX Robotics announced in a press release that it will showcase the Ovis Suitcase, an autonomous piece of luggage that’s powered by AI and self-navigates through terminals, at  CES 2019. ForwardX Robotics said the Ovis Suitcase, which will cost $799, will be available to customers by the first half of 2019.

After debuting the CX-1, a suitcase prototype model, at CES 2018, ForwardX Robotics upgraded the Ovis Suitcase with cool high-tech features, including side-follow movement, a GPS tracking module, and a manual mode for escalators and stairs.

Unlike standard luggage, the Ovis Suitcase uses self-driving technology and algorithms to side-follow users anywhere, including airports, city streets, and hotels. Computer vision technology enables the Ovis Suitcase to spot obstacles and move around them, so users won’t have to worry about it bumping into objects.

On escalators and stairs, users can place their hand on the Ovis Suitcase handle to switch it to manual mode. Users can wear a smart band that notifies them when the Ovis Suitcase is more than 6.5 feet away, and a GPS tracking module allows users to find their Ovis Suitcase if they leave it behind in a car or hotel.

Ovis Suitcase (Photo Credit: ForwardX)

Following CES 2018, ForwardX Robotics raised more than $1.4 million for the Ovis Suitcase through its Indiegogo campaign. ForwardX Robotics, which previously raised $10 million in series A funding, just closed its series B funding round with another $20 million. With the Ovis Suitcase, ForwardX Robotics aims to provide customers with high-tech, hassle-free travel experiences, so they don’t have to worry about luggage issues on the go.

“Most robots today are programmed to do a single task. Our AI-enabled robots can perform several different functions with very limited help from humans, similar to self-driving vehicles,” Nicholas Chee, the CEO of ForwardX Robotics, said in the press release. “We see that as the next true breakthrough in robotic technology.”

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