Friday 29 April 2016

World's Largest Aircraft Airlander 10


The Airlander 10 – World’s Largest Aircraft

The world’s largest aircraft, the Airlander 10 has ultimately been given its official name – Martha Gwyn, which had uncharitably earned the nickname of the `Flying Bum’ owing to its characteristic shape when seen from front.

The name had been disclosed at a ceremony at its hanger in Shortstown, Bedfordshire, just days after regulators had given the go-ahead for its first flight which was to take place later in the year, by Duke of Kent. Hybrid Air Vehicles, building the Airlander has also revealed that it hadraised-up over £1 billion in crowdfunding push this month and the airship is named after the wife of the chairman of Hybrid Air Vehicles, Philip Gwyn.

Mrs Gwyn had stated that she can’t really take it in and had a shire horse named after her in the past and this is the first airship. She adds that when The Duke had stood back and she read and then looked again and read it, it took some time for it to sink in and that it has been an enormous surprise.

Offer Business/Leisure Flights

The Duke of Kent, who is the pilot himself, during his visit to the First World War era hanger where the Airlander is retained, was shown around the flight deck and cabin of the aircraft before being given the occasion of experiencing what it would be like to fly in the aircraft in its flight trainer.

Over 302 ft. long, the aircraft which is part plane and partairship is about 50 feet longer than the largest passenger jets. It is said that the design of the hybrid airship had been first developed for the US government as a long endurance surveillance aircraft though it fell short of defence falloffs.

 The British firm Hybrid Air Vehicles has launched a campaign in May 2015, to return the Airlander 10 to the skies and would now carry out ground testing before 200 hours of test flights which tends to begin later in the year. The ship is said to be converted to offer business as well as leisure flights in a hanger in Cardington, Bedfordshire.

Conception – Lighter than Air Technology-Airships/Aerodynamic Lift - Airplanes

The conception behind it is to combine the lighter than air technology that is used in airships with the aerodynamic lift that is seen in airplanes, enabling it to travel long distances with comparatively less fuel and set down without the need for large measure runways.

Last October, one of its fins which measures 29 feet by 36 feet was filled with 1.3 million cubic feet of helium adequate to fill 15 Olympic sized swimming pools, in a test run. However in spite of its impressive size and design, which is anticipated to give a boost, in using airships, the vehicles tend to attract more attention due to its appearance.

The test in October resulted in a stir on Twitter, with several spotting the airship rather unfortunate resemblance to a human bottom. In one of the case, head-on image of the airship had been changed with the inclusion of a picture of Kim Kardashian who is said to be famous for her derriere. In November, the aircraft had already been tested with successful float test with the hull being filled with helium and floated external of the aircraft hangar, though it would be the first test once the engines are attached successfully.

Bots Explained


Bots/Chatbots Popular Models for Software

Bot is a software which has been designed to automate the kinds of jobs one tend to do usually on their own, such as making a dinner reservation, fetching and displaying information or adding an appointment to your calendar. While technology to simulate conversation with the computer has been around for several years, bots or chatbots are a popular model for software. The common kind of bots, chatbots tend to simulate conversation and often live within the messaging apps or are designed to look that way. It seems like one is chatting back and forth as one would do with a human being.

Some of the bots can handle various customer service requests that would usually need a telephone call to a human agent. For instance, a bot has been released by Taco Bell which permits you to order and pay for tacos via an automated chat conversion. Other bots such as could be helpful in scheduling the meeting for you wherein one could just add the bot to the email thread and it could handle the back and forth conversation essential in scheduling the meeting, makes you aware when the same is arranged and adds it to your calendar.

Bots Capable of automating all Types of Things

As the bot technology tends of progress, the thinking is that the bots would be capable of automating all types of things, possibly even things as complex as the taxes. Chatbots have already been there in several places where one tends to communicate, mainly messaging apps that lend themselves to conversational interface. Bots are there in Slack, which is the business-focused messaging service, several of which tend to help with the work-connected task like expenses or to-do-lists. Kik Messengers having about 275 million registered users has announced recently a bot store which comprise of one bot, to send people Vine videos and another to get makeup suggestions from Sephora.

For years, Twitter seems to have bot, such as bots which tweets about earthquakes as soon as they are registered or a Domino’s bot which permits you to order a pizza by tweeting a pizza emoji. Several of the users are expecting Facebook to roll out a bot store of some type at its annual F8 conference for software developers which would mean that these bots would soon be operative within Messenger, the messaging app.

Companies Stacking Big on Bots

Test of the virtual assistant bot known as `M’ had already begun, though the product seems to be available for a few people and mainly powered by humans. Several of the companies which are building the apps used on the phones are building bots. A group of companies are staking big on bots inclusive of Microsoft and Slack which tend to have easy access for bots.

The technology which tends to power bots, artificial intelligence software has been progressing intensely due to the sharp interest from key Silicon Valley powers such as Google and Facebook. Facebook which tends to have 900 million Messenger users is said to get into bots and many envisage this as a big probable opportunity and where Facebook seems to go, the rest of the industry tend to follow.

Slack which imports bot-based services has also developed radically to two million daily users which bot makers as well as the investors view it as a possible profitable market. It is helpful that messaging is seen as a new opportunity particularly in interacting with a corporation in the same personal space one would generally interact with a colleague.

Thursday 28 April 2016

How rude! Words to Avoid When Sending Email


List of Deadly Words to Avoid in Emails

The most pleasant and well manner person could seem like jerks in an email and writing an email which comes out like one would do in person is a fine art. In a conversation, one can adjust the tone, together with the facial expression accompanied with gestures and postures to fit the mood of what is being conveyed to the other person. This is done since people tend to respond on how it is said than to what is actually said. Email tends to strip a conversation plain.

It seems well-organized though otherwise, it turns easy communications into messy misunderstandings. Without the involvement of facial expressions and body posture for guidance in conveying message, people tend to view each word that is typed as an indicator of tone and mood.

Outsource-Philippines firm, a provider of global outsource solution, has gathered a list of ten deadly words which people should not use while composing emails, to make sure that you are not giving the recipient the wrong impression. Should you be using words like `thanks’ or showering with `I’s, me’s together with plenty of exclamation point !!!?, to end the emails, you could be considered as rude even if you don’t intend to do so. Some of the tips to be observed are avoiding swearing, usage of exclamation points sparingly, single one at most. One should avoid using word like `actually’, since it seems to make one sound, insulting and annoying.

Definite Terms/Words Best Said in Person

The site also recommends avoiding saying `sorry’ in an email since it seems better to apologize in person when one tends to make a mistake. According to the company, ‘communicating with clients and colleagues through email does not mean that one should not be careful with the choice of words. There are definite terms or words which are best said in person since one can identify easily the meaning behind it by observing the facial expression and tone of the speaker.

In fact, some of the tips tend to make sense especially in the context of customer care emails. Leslie Katz of CNET points out that some of the suggestions come across as far too broad, with regards to dealing with customers. The word `important’ could be helpful in underscoring a point without implying rudely the readers who are not smart enough to know the important emails when they seem them. She adds that `digital communication like several human interactions is far from one byte that suits all.

Swearing Not Helpful in Winning New Customers

At times, a bit of spontaneity together with a few exclamation points could go a long way in humanizing an exchange even one which tends to originate with a big faceless company and they actually can. As the infographic recommend, for instance, `fine’ could convey a couple of various messages - `that works’ and `sure, be that way’. Swearing will not possibly win one any new customers. Google `rude emails and one will encounter various tips on how to keep the emails on the right side of being rude.

Several recurrent points seem to be common sense and are worth bearing in mind, irrespective of the recipient. One needs to be professional and respectful, steer away from a Debbi Downer vibe, mitigate criticism with support and in stick circumstances, should give oneself, time-out before hitting the send key and be cautious of the risky reply-all.

EE Aims to Improve 4G and Relocate Customer Services in UK


EE Bringing Customer Service Operation Back to UK

After being branded as one of the worst mobile networks for customer satisfaction of UK, EE is making attempts of bringing its customer service operation back to the UK. The operator has mentioned that 100% of its customer service calls would be controlled in the UK and Ireland towards the end of 2016, giving rise to 600 new jobs in Merthyr, North Tyneside, Plymouth and Ireland.

Marc Allera, the new boss of the company had stated that EE had already improved customer satisfaction and reduced complaints by 50% by creating 1,400 new service jobs in UK and Ireland since 2014. He had stated that they are creating 600 additional jobs to handle all EE customer service calls in the UK and Ireland by the end of this year, offering the best possible experience for the customers.

 Alex Neill, director of campaigns and communications for Which, had stated that telecoms are a vital part of present life and providers need to begin delivering for their customers. EE had also made an announcement of a major investment in rural 4G coverage with a pledge to cover 95% of the landmass of UK by 2020.

Vital Aim of Covering Whole of UK with 4G

Usually mobile operators have focused on population coverage which means that the majority of investment has been put in providing 4G in cities and towns, where the population density seems to be the highest.

Though presently EE coverage has reached over 95% of the UK population, it has only reached about 60% of UK geography which means that large paths of the country does not have 4G coverage at all. Allera has stated that customers desire 4G speeds wherever they go and mobile operators are too used to saying `no’ to new coverage.

He further added that presently they have an ambition to go further than any operator has ever gone and with the vital aim of covering the whole UK with 4G. EE had made this commitment by switching on 4G in Shetland and the Isles of Scilly, which is almost 1,000 miles apart at the opposite ends of the UK.

EE to Build More New Cell Sites

This has been possible due to the fibre broadband links installed by BT which had recently closed its £12.5 billion acquisition of EE. EE intends to build more than 750 new cell sites all over the country, as part of its rural 4G rollout. Mr Allera has stated that the demand for 4G could help mobile network challenge public opposition to infrastructure like transmitter mast need to enable it.

The barriers needed to overcome are around how fast and easy it can get access to these sites as well as how to ensure that we do not have landlords who can charge ransom rates that would make it prohibitive to get a solution. He further informed that EE is working with the government in tackling the issue. Matthew Howett, Ovum analyst mentioned that reforms are vital for the success of the strategy and unless the government takes a lead on ensuring fair and reasonable access and site rentals, EE hopes 95% coverage will be apprehensive with difficulty.

Are We Getting Ripped of by Today’s Data Packages?


The Big Data Switch Campaign

As mobile users we were charged to send text and to make calls and the cost to the Telco service provider for each text or call was quite less and individuals comprehended the relationship. Those were the initial days of mobile phones which were very simple and users learned how to use predictive text. However with the arrival of the internet-cabled smartphone, it has completely overhauled the relationship the customers tend to have with their devices and their Telco provider. Presently it is all related to data.

Australia’s biggest consumer network, will be partnering with to launch The Big Data Switch Campaign, which is a people powered campaign that will be reducing the cost of mobile and broadband data. This would result in companies moving to reasonably economical voice as well as text messaging packages besides adding more expensive pricing schemes around data.For instance, in 2010, the use of second gigabyte of data on a Virgin mobile plan would have cost the user 140 times more than the first gig; and the user would not have realised it for days. Overpriced excess data rates had been a main money spinner for Australian telcos but are now a thing of the past.

The Legacy Cost

Some of the companies like Telstra, Optus and Vodafone had all brought in processes of reducing cases of bill shock and most of the plans tend to now add an extra GB of data for $10. This has brought about a radical change in the overall cost which customers tend to pay for data. For instance, less than three years back, Optus would charge 25c per megabyte for excess data usage that amounted to $250 for an extra GB. Though most of the customers presently can have an automatic top up for $10, those who are not on a plan may encounter a bit expensive price.

 Telstra, for instance tends to charge three cents per MB for additional mobile data without a data pack that works out to $30 per GB. Paul Budde, telecommunication expert, had informed, that `there is no direct correlation between the cost of data and what we pay’. Customers on the contrary, are paying for the infrastructure and administrative costs of companies like Telstra when they branch out of data which Mr Budde refers as `the legacy cost’.

Category 11 4G – Introduced by Telstra

He adds that regarding paying for mobile data, it is determined by marketing as well as industry competition. In September, Mike Wright, Telstra’s Group Managing Director of Networks, had informed that telcos base their data additions in the plans around how much they consider their networks can handle without slowing down. Upgrades to infrastructures like Category 11 4G had been introduced by Telstra last year. Mr Wright had said that `letting more phones on the network to download at high speed than ever before, allows data costs to go down’.

He added that updates and developments related to the proficiency and ability of the network are a way for telco companies in bringing down their cost though will not have any impact on what customers pay for mobile packages. Presently if all have unlimited mobile data and constantly streaming high-definition Netflix, the network would come to a halt.

But the recent free data days put by the company portrays that their network has the potential of handing huge jump in data use. He further adds that competition and not technology tends to dictate the price more than anything.

Wednesday 27 April 2016

Kepler Spacecraft in Emergency Mode


Kepler Entered Mode on April 6

According to an update of April 8 from Charlie Sobeck, mission manager at NASA’s Ames Research Centre in Moffett Field, California, Kepler seemingly entered the mode on April 6. Kepler had burnt more of its dropping supplyof fuel in an emergency mode, which is essential to ignite its thrusters and position the spacecraft in communicating with Earth.

The turning manoeuvre which would have begun the new planet hunt had not yet been executed by the spacecraft. Kepler, till now had discovered planets by observing the slight dimming of starlight triggered by an orbiting planet that passed in front of a star. The investigation has been enthusiastically successful, discovering over 1,040 confirmed planets as well as more than 4,700 planet candidates since the launch of 2009.

The new campaign is said to have run from April 7 to July 1 and it would have looked out for the temporary brightening of star due to a different effect known as gravitational microlensing. The gravity of an intervening object, in microlensing, like in the case of planet, tends to focus and intensify the light from a background star, causing it to brighten.

Microlensing Targets Big Planets at Great Distances

Contrasting to Kepler’s other discoveries that seem to be smaller planets comparatively close to their host stars, microlensing tends to target big planets at great distances from their stars or even lonely planets seem to bewandering on their own through the depth of space. Ground-based telescopes have revealed 46 planets through microlensing and the astronomers expect that Kepler would discover 10 or more during the campaign.

 These kinds of discoveries would be helpful in narrowing the statistics on how common free-floating planets could be throughout the Galaxy. Astronomers have synchronized an intricate plan wherein around two dozen ground-based telescopes that have been spread across six continents, would be gazing at the same area of the sky at the same time as Kepler.

 They comprise the Optical Gravitational Lensing Experiment – OGLE survey that tends to hunt for microlensing events from the Las Campanas Observatory, in Chile. OGLE intended to shift its observing strategy slightly to overlap with the same fields which Kepler had been looking at. NASA’s Spitzer Space Telescope was to have joined in the hunt too, in late June.

Kepler’s Microlensing Campaign Presently on Hold

It could have been the first microlensing survey directed at the same time from the ground as well as from space. The different vantage points could have enabled astronomers to research the potential microlensing planets much more easily than just utilising one or two ground-based telescopes. Andrew Cole, astronomer at the University of Tasmania in Hobart, Australia had stated that `there is a strong feeling like it’s Christmas morning and we were all set to unwrap a shiny new toy and then we had to put everything on hold owing to power outage or something’.

His team had scheduled to use a 1.3-metre telescope in Tasmania in order to track on microlensing alerts from Kepler. The start of Kepler’s microlensing campaign presently is on hold till engineers tend to get the telescope working again. It is presently about 120 million kilometres from Earth, which means that each message tends to take 13 minutes to reach Kepler and back. Days that are lost from the microlensing campaign would be difficult to make up later.

 NASA’s director of astrophysics, Paul Hertz, had touted that the Kepler microlensing survey is a step towards the next big space telescope of the agency, the Wide-Field Infrared Survey Telescope, that is intended to do microlensing searches after it launches in 2020.

MIT's new Chronos System Promises Precise Wi-Fi Tracking


Chronos – Wireless Localization Technology

Several users tend to use Wi-Fi to browse social media, check emails and watch videos. However according to Dan Misener, Radio technology columnist, researchers at MIT have invented something known as Chronos which is the latest way of using Wi-Fi in tracking the exact position down to the centimetre. Chronos is a `wireless localization’ technology or a Wi-Fi positioning system and is essentially a method of utilising Wi-Fi in figuring out where you are.

There are various means of doing this though Chronos tends to work by measuring the time it may take for a signal to travel from one wireless device to another device. For instance, if you have a smartphone and it is connected to a wireless router, the router tends to send information to the phone. The phone receives the same and then sends back a signal.

On measuring the time taken and by applying some calculation to the signal, one can determine where the smartphone is with regards to the router, the distance and the angle. In many ways, it tends to be the same way how radar or sonar systems seem to work. Chronos could be considered as a way to turn a regular Wi-Fi router into a kind of radar system which can distinguish objects and where they could be in the world.

Difference is Accuracy

The big difference is the accuracy. Customers-grade GPS tend to pinpoint you within a few metres distance but Chronos system tends to locate you within tens of centimetres. Moreover there are instances where GPS sometimes does not function at all like in underground or when one is indoors. Chronos tends to work anywhere within a Wi-Fi router range.

There are various other Wi-Fi based location system and are often utilised in airports, hotels and shopping mall to track foot traffic. U.S. malls tend to use shopper’s cell phones to track them, but those systems need several access point and many routers to cover a large area and triangulate the location of someone.

The distinctive thing regarding Chronos is that it only needs a single access point, a single router and one can set this up at home or a small business without incurring much expense.

Utilised in Locating Lost Device within the Home

The researchers have also informed that Chronos tends to be 20 times more accurate than the prevailing systems. One reason for using it in home is `home automation’ wherein there is a rise of the smart homes which tends to respond to who is in them.

Hence knowing who is at home and where people are within a home could be useful information. In a demonstration, the researchers had shown how Chronos tends to accurately identify which room a person was in 94% of the time. This device could also be utilised in locating a lost device within the home which could be helpful whenever a phone or a tablet would be misplaced.

Chronos can be used in controlling who gets to access the Wi-Fi, which could be useful for small businesses. Deepak Vasisht, one of the MIT researchers had informed at last month’s symposium, that if one walks into a Starbucks, they tend to get free Wi-Fi, but if one talks to them, they inform that they are very much keen in restricting free Wi-Fi access only to their customers and do not want to give free Wi-Fi to their neighbours which could end up causing congestion for their own customers. Hence a coffee shop could use Chronos to cut off Wi-Fi freeloaders.

Saturday 23 April 2016

Why You Need To Go With Good Server Hosting Services For Your Business


When it comes to your business effectiveness, you want to make sure you go with good server hosting services in order to beat the competition. If you don't choose the optimal host server, you could end up with delays and other frustrations which can add a lot of stress to your workday. Spend some time looking for the right company so you don't run into a lot of issues. With the right company, you can have a great server that doesn't break down on a regular basis.

What A Reliable Server Hosting Services Company Should Have

A good company will have people who respond to issues right away, will be able to fix any problems that come up and will have good customer service. Look for a good server hosting services company that can provide you all of these things.

Having to wait on a company to come fix something you need to work is frustrating. Try to think of things you can do when your computers are offline. Hopefully, you won't have too much time where you can't go online because of your host server but if it happens then you will be prepared.

You want a company that will respond when you call them. You don't want to be put on hold for a long time or have to call back because the number is busy. If you have a problem you want a quick response. Having your server go down can make it hard to work so you want it to be back up and running as soon as possible.

When you call the server hosting services company for help you want to be treated with good customer service. You don't want to feel like you are bothering them. If that is the case it will be awkward to ask them for help and it would be better to go with a better company that you enjoy talking with. A good company will hire kind people for customer service that can help connect you to the right person and help you fix your problem.

The Importance Of Having A Reliable Host Server

It is also important that the company you go with offers a host server service that works. Sometimes you can't plan for every situation but if your server is always going down it is probably time to switch to a new company. That would let you know that something isn't working right with your current company and you need to spend your money somewhere else.

Spend some time looking into the different companies in your area. Ask other people who they use and find out who has a good reputation. Then decide who would be best for your business. You want to spend the time to do this so your business can run smoothly. Once you find the right server hosting services company, make sure you go over what you are expecting from them. They will let you know what they can offer you and then you will agree on a price for the host server. Make sure you know who to call if you have an issue and make plans for the day they come to get everything set up in your office.

Ford's Autonomous Fusion can see in the Dark Without Headlights


Ford Fusion Hybrid Autonomous Research Vehicle – No Headlight On

There are a lot of talks going on regarding the present status of self-driving cars. Ford is aware that its systems are not perfect yet; however its self-driving Fusion research vehicle seems to be getting better and is capable of navigating in the dark. Ford Fusion Hybrid autonomous research vehicle with no headlights on, had recently navigated along lonely desert roads to perform task which would be dangerous for a human driver. Driving in pitch black at Ford Arizona Proving Grounds symbolises the next step on the journey of the company in delivering fully autonomous vehicles to consumers all over the world.

Its car have the potential of tackling the dark of night owing to two technologies namely 3D mapping and LiDar which tends to stand for Light Detection And Ranging, uses lasers for measuring the distance to objects. The 3D maps tend to provide extra information regarding the road, comprising of markings as well as the geography. The LiDar also helps the car to recognize where on the map it is at that point of time. Utilising infrared improving goggles, the engineers of Ford were able to observe the car work its magic as it casts infrared laser beams around the vehicle.

Adequately Strong to Steer Impeccably

Presently, the night-time, lights-off testing has been limited to its Arizona proving grounds, since it is quite illegal in operating vehicle on public roads at night minus the traditional illumination. Though autonomous night vision could be helpful for vehicles to continue to move towards a destination if infrastructure or the own lighting of the vehicle tends to goes dark, dashing forward in pitch black could be a bit scary to an average driver or passenger.

Moreover, it would also put a dent in the light pollution which covers most of the sky in areas with great population density.It is an important progress which shows that even without cameras that depends on light; Ford LiDar tends to work with the virtual driver software of the car and is adequately strong to steer impeccably around winding roads. Though it is idyllic to have all the three modes of sensors namely radar, cameras and LiDar, the last can operate independently on roads without stoplights.

No Driver to Intervene/Control Vehicle

Jim McBride, technical leader for autonomous cars says that due to LiDar, the test cars are not dependent on the sun shining, or cameras detecting painted white lines on the tarmac. In fact LiDar enables autonomous cars to drive well in the dark as they do in the light of day’. After over a decade of Ford autonomous vehicle research, the company has been dedicated to achieving fully autonomous driving possibility that as defined by SAE International Level 4 does not need the driver to intervene and control the vehicle.

Ford, this year will be increasing its autonomous vehicle test fleet bringing the number to around 30 self-driving Fusion Hybrid sedans for the purpose of testing on roads in California, Arizona and Michigan. These elements seems to be the main elements of Fort Smart Mobility, the plan in taking Ford to the next level with regards to connectivity, mobility, customer experience, autonomous vehicles, together with data and analytics.

Time Management Techniques to Increase Your Productivity

Time Management

Whenever missing deadlines, being late in appointments, and feeling drained without tangible accomplishments are common occurrences in your work life then you have to admit that there is a big problem. Fortunately, this problem is not big enough that good time management techniques cannot handle.

What are time management techniques that will ensure productivity? 

Once you start practicing the following time management techniques you can see for yourself how productive your work day would be:

  • Be realistic on your “to-do” list – there are people who have a daily to-do list that is so long you will wonder if the items could be accomplished in a month! Do not be this person. Try to come up with a “processed” to-do list. This means that you have already gone through all the tasks you need to accomplish and you are now going to prioritize the items on the list based on their necessity and value. In other words, your to-do list for the day should only contain tasks that you have to accomplish during that day (necessity) and those that will help you advance your career (value). Four items would suffice since in reality you only have about five hours in a day to actually spend working. If you are not able to finish everything on your list, move the unfinished items on the next day and complete the five tasks again. 
  • Avoid tasks that waste your time – if you are in a habit of glancing at your Facebook or other social media accounts every now and then, stop it. If your colleagues are always dropping by to chat, close your door (if you have your own room) or say politely that you have to urgent work to finish. Every time you get interrupted at work, you have to spend extra time trying to get back to the “work mode” you initially have. 
  • Have one complete organizer or personal calendar – time management techniques will do you no good if you have no clue what are the things that you need to do given the time that you have. There individuals who maintain different calendars for different aspects of their lives. For example, they have a calendar for their social activities, for their work appointments, and another for personal engagements. This system does not work. The only way you can manage your time wisely is by organizing every little thing that you do in a day. By maintain one organizer/ personal calendar for everything you can readily see, at a glance, if you still have any more available time for other things. 
  • Set specific time to finish every task – if you have a specific time deadline in mind your brain and whole body will work with urgency. That is why you need to put time limit on every task and you force yourself to stick with it. You should only adjust these time frames when absolutely necessary like your boss called for an emergency meeting.
Proper observance and application of the above mentioned time management techniques will undoubtedly make your work day more productive. But aside from that, it will also relieve you of stress and tension since you know that you are not helpless but fully in control of your day.

Surrey now has the UK's 'Largest' Police Drone Project


Surry Police – Largest Drone Squadron in UK

Surrey police has the largest drone squadron in the UK after being given £250,000 to buy new drones. The Surrey and Sussex Police force had trained 38 of its members of staff on how to fly UAVs and will be increasing its fleet from one to five after being funded by the Home Office. Officer utilising the drone during the three month trial would comprise of those in Gatwick Airport’s armed response unit, forensic collision investigation and reconstruction, a targeted patrol team, neighbourhood response together with a command search and operation planning unit.

Assistant chief constable Steve Barry had commented in a statement that their drone operations will be overt, open and transparent and will use all outlets available to ensure that the public are informed regarding the drone use. He also stated that it was the largest trial of drone by the police in the UK and other forces testing drones will provide the force with details. As per the police force, discussions regarding the privacy of members of the public have taken place with the Information Commissioner’s Office and the office of the Surveillance Commissioner. It is said that both seemed to be satisfied with the plans to test the drones.

Drones Used for Various Applications

The police force has been conducting limited trials with its prevailing drone around Gatwick airport and the four new Aeryon SkyRangers purchased will be utilised by the trained officers. Barry had added that the OSC had recently seen the Gatwick drone being operated and were impressed with the operational protocols. As the potentials of drone tend to have increased, more public authorities have begun to test the drones for various application. Police forces in UK including the Police Service of Northern Ireland have been testing the use of drone.

Commercial use of drone has been covered by guidelines from the Civil Aviation Authority and organisations need to register drones of a definite size with the regulator. As reported by The Telegraph, local councils have started the use of drones to evaluate planning application for building alterations and new building. In all, 12 councils had purchased or hired drones, using them for planning, monitoring coastal erosion and surveying dangerous buildings. First responders to emergency cases all over Europe have also been set in starting the use of drones in support with their work.

Potential of 50-Minute Flight Time

The European Emergency Number Association has stated that mountain rescue teams in Ireland as well as fire-fighters in Holland would be given DJI drone in order to help in responding to situations. In the meanwhile in Malawi, UNICEFhas been testing the use of drones in speeding the process of diagnosing HIV. The drone model is the Canadian-built Aeryon SkyRanger sUAS that has been operative since 2014 at London’s Gatwick airport.

Aeryon has mentioned on its website that `designed to military and government specifications, the Aeryon SkyRanger uUAS airframe and integrated platform is based on successful customer exercises and missions all around the world. The SkyRanger is said to have the potential of a 50 minute flight time which can be operated by a sole user and tends to have reliable flight performance in demanding environments and high winds.

What Is Forex?


Forex is a common term you face when you go through different websites on the internet. A number of advertisements are displayed where you find the common call ‘Start Forex trading today with....’ and similar. Many of us don’t know that what is Forex and how to perform Forex trading. Well, learning Forex, what can be traded and how it is traded is not a big deal. We will help you to understand the basic knowledge about Forex with XFR Financial Ltd or XTrade.

What is mean by Forex?

Forex stands for Foreign exchange and it deals with the exchange of foreign currencies. To better understand what is forex, you have to know that every country’s currency value fluctuates with respect to another country’s currency and that is the basis of Forex trading. Let us take an example. EUR is the currency of many European countries and USD is US Dollar. In EUR/USD pair, the relative price of EUR with respect to USD is taken. A trader dealing with this currency pair will make a speculation of future prices of EUR/USD pair and buys or sells the currency pair. If the speculation goes correct, the trader will make a gain otherwise a loss.

How Forex trading at XTrade is done?


After learning what is Forex, the other important thing is to understand how Forex trading is done. Gone are the days when Forex trading was done through a physical broker. Now all the Forex trading has gone online and it is far more convenient to get the services of an online Forex broker like XFR Financial Ltd or XTrade. A trader, who wants to open a Forex trading account, searches for a good online Forex broker and registers an account with him. Finding a good online Forex broker like XFR Financial Ltd or XTrade takes a little time and you can read reviews of different Forex broker and select the broker of your choice. Do not register with a fraud broker or a scammer. Always trust a regulated broker.

So, register with a Forex broker and open an online trading account with him. You can first try out a demo account to trade with demo funds for practice and later you can open a live trading account. Forex brokers also provide an online Forex trading platform where you can perform all your trading activities starting from execution of trades to making analysis and reading reports. A good selection of Forex trading platform is must.

XFR Financial Ltd provides a learning centre


Today most of the Forex brokers like XFR Financial Ltd or XTrade also provide a learning centre where you get education like what is Forex, how Forex trading is done, different useful strategies, about technical and fundamental analysis and much more. Forex trading is done with a smart approach and effective strategies and techniques. If you want to be a successful trader, you have to learn Forex trading as well. Just knowing what is Forex trading is not a good approach.

Monday 18 April 2016

Palm Skin Could Be Turned Into Touchscreen


Technique – Time Reversible Processing – SkinHaptics

The Internet of Things would soon stretch to your skin, with the hands working like a touchscreen. Researcher at the University of Sussex in England have conducted a study on a technique known as time-reversal processing which can be utilised in sending ultrasound waves through the hand.

SkinHaptics is a system that tends to send ultrasound through the hand in creating a sense of touch. The waves of ultrasound tend to get targeted while they travel through the hand ending at a precise point on the palm. It could sound like some kind of an incredible sci-fi novel though one would soon be capable of using the skin as a touchscreen. UK scientists have achieved in creating tactile sensations on the palm of a human hand utilising ultra-light beams.

The hand is envisaged as a possible perfect display extension for the forthcoming smartwatches though earlier haptic technology had used pins or other vibrating parts, to touch the skin and then block the display area of the hands. The new system is said to be different since it utilises sound to provide touch feedback wherein the hand is available as a touchscreen.The new application, SkinHaptics tends to send sensations to the palm from the back of the hand so that the palm is free to display the screen.

Wearable Are Big Business

The first to discover a way for users to feel what they are doing while interacting with displays projected on their hand were a team from the University of Sussex. Professor Sriram Subramanian, leading the research team at the University of Sussex stated that wearable are already big business and will only tend to get bigger. He adds that as we tend to wear technology more, it gets smaller and we look at it less and hence multisensory capabilities have become more important.

If one envisages that they are on the bike and want to change the volume control on the smartwatch, the interaction space on the watch is quite small and so companies are considering how to extend this space to the hand of the user. What is offered to the user is the potential of feeling their actions while they are interacting with the hand. The discoveries were presented at the IEEE Haptic Symposium 2016 in Philadelphia by co-author Dr Daniel Spelmezan study.

Haptic Technology – Fast Growing Element of Technology Market

When the device is placed at the back of the hand, it tends to feel like it is touching the palm. With additional progress, the technology is said to be used in similar ways to smart watch application. For instance, SkinHaptics could send the sensation of a tap on the wrist in notifying users of incoming calls or inform them whether to turn left or right while following directions.

 A projector can also form a display on the hand of the user, thereby turning the skin into a long-lasting touchscreen. Haptic technology that comprises of vibrating controllers in video games as well as vibrates alerts on phones and other smart device is said to be a fast growing element of the technology market. Researchers are of the opinion that the overall haptic technology market could reach $29.84 billion towards 2020.

Though haptic technology supporters aim on applications mainly in the virtual reality gaming as well as medical fields, products such as SkinHaptics tend to give rise to more diverse applications of haptic technology.

There's now a Sofa you can Control From Your Phone


Sofa – Controlled from a Smartphone 

In the quest of connecting everything to the internet, we now have a sofa which can be controlled from a smartphone. The Lift-Bit is said to be the world’s first Internet of Things – IoT sofa which has been developed by international design firm Carlo Ratti Associati. The sofa is said to be made up of various modular segments which can be moved around in creating various seating arrangements. The individual stools which tend to make up the sofa are motorised enabling them to be lowered and raised.

Carlo Ratti had informed Wired thatLift-Bit is presently a prototype and embeds a linear actuator which enables the seats to move up and down. Each of the elements of the module is controlled through a tablet as well as through a touch-less gesture of the hand. The closeness capacity-based sensor tends to detect a hand hovering above at various heights, enabling the change of the height. The stools range from 480mm tall to 780mm at the maximum height. Lift-Bit’s app comprise of a number of predetermined shapes together with a tool enabling the owner in creating new combinations. Ratti has stated that they just want people to be creative with it and start acting like designers of their own space.

Developed In Association with Swiss Design Company Vitra

Ratti who also works at MIT had stated that the future interior designers could make furniture which could adjust to how humans seem to utilise space. He added that the design could create `a living, tailored space’ which could be moulded to what people desire and need. The connected stools is said to be presented at the Milan XXI Triennale International Exhibition from April 12 to September 12. The Internet-connected stools had been developed in association with the Swiss design company Vitra. After the exhibition, the stools would be put on sale and those behind it are presently working with a manufacturer on mass production. Pre-orders on the organisations’ website, come in four various colours of blue, mint, red and yellow and will be priced at €799 prior to shipping or taxes. A king-sized bed of 18 stools comes at a price of €12,000.

Part of Customisable Furniture 

The Lift-Bit is a part of customisable furniture which only limits to your imagination and can transform itself into any shape with the swipe of an iPad screen. According to Gizmodo report, the shape lifting sofa is made up of a series of hexagonal stools mounted on motorised actuators which can be raised or lowered with the use of an app.
 The customisable stools can be ordered by the piece. Ratti has designed the Lift-Bit to get `bored’ when it is left alone and it will begin shape-shifting on its own when it is not in use for an extended period of time. Ratti stated that `architecture has often been described as a type of `third skin’, besides our own biological one and the clothing. But for too long it has functioned rather like a corset, a rigid and uncompromising addition to our body. Lift-Bit tends to draw the potential of Internet of Things technologies in transforming the interior landscape and providing a kind of an endlessly reconfigurable atmosphere. Presently, the Lift-Bit is available to pre-order online and those fascinated in designing their own Lift-Bit configuration could do so on the Lift-Bit simulator.

Saturday 16 April 2016

Your Smartphone to be Your Passport Soon


UK Based Company – Technology to Store Paperless Passport in Smartphone

A British-based commercial banknote printer and passport company De La Rue has been working on a technology that could influence to store `paperless passports’ in smartphones by allowing travellers to use their smartphone at immigration control.De La Rue is the world’s biggest passport producer and prints British Banknotes.

 The technology could store passports within mobile phones permitting travellers to do away with the booklet which has been around for many years.It could turn to paperless passport which could act the same to mobile boarding cards enabling tourist to travel through the airport minus any documents, according to Telegraph. According to spokesman of the company who quoted that paperless passports is said to be one of the several enterprises which is presently being looked at, though at the moment it is a perception which is at the initial stage of development.

The report adds that the potential for forgery, global barriers together with distinct possibility of losing one’s smartphone could mean the security challenges present great hurdles. The Times had reported that Martin Sutherland, chief executive of the company had stated that they had begun work on the project in order to provide secure phone based information which could be operated at immigration control.

New Innovation/Technology Solutions

David Jevans from security company Proofpoint had quoted stating that the `digital passport on the phone would need new hardware on the device to securely store the electronic passport which cannot be copied from the phone. He further added that it would also have to be communicated wirelessly to passport reader since doing it onscreen similar to an airline ticket QR code could be copied or fooled.

De La rue chief executive Martin Sutherland had informed The Times that the paperless passport service is already in the testing mode. A spokesman has stated that technology is at the forefront of De La Rue’s business and is constantly looking at new innovations as well as technology solutions for customers around the globe. Modern passports tend to have chips already in them which compare the carrier’s face to the one that is stored in the passport. The one that is in the smartphone could embed this technology rather than merely representing the documents on a screen.

Passport Non Digital Document Given Technological Treatment

Passports are one of the last hold outs of non-digital documents. For instance, airline tickets are already being delivered directly to phones. Most important for De La Rue, would be to adjust its identity technology in a digital format and obtain the approval of its use by the government.

Airports in Miami as well as Atlanta have already tested mobile-based clearance system wherein travellers could use the phone to enter customs details. As mentioned by Sutherland, paperless passport being in the early stage of development, it was unlikely to arrive in the short term.

 Passport being one of the last hold-outs of non-digital documents in the travel industry, recently it has been given the technological treatment- cloud passport has been given a trial run and travellers could also take a self as their passport photo. Now it is left to be seen if passport books would go paperless and it is just a matter to time to see the outcome of this technology.

Friday 15 April 2016

FaceBook new Chatbots


Facebook to Create `Chatbots’

Recently Facebook Inc. had informed that it has opened up its Messenger app to developers in order to create `chatbots’ anticipating that by feigning one-on-one conversations between users and companies, it would tend to expand towards customer service and enterprise transactions.

Chatbots are considered to be automated programs which tend to help users in communicating with businesses, carrying out jobs like online purchases. Though chatbots had prevailed in some form for years, they have now become an interesting subject in the tech business since progress in artificial intelligence as well as machine learning have made them much more capable and possibly able to adopt an important role in the manner in which customers tend to communicate with businesses.

 Facebook had launched chatbots with a handful of partners comprising of Shopify which is an ecommerce site and cable TV news network CNN. The chatbots are said to be part of Facebook’s attempt in building its Messenger instant messaging app as go-to-place for customers in contacting businesses. It is a strategy which tends to threaten the out-dated call centres and could cut personnel cost for some of the businesses.

Controls a Huge Trove of Data

Chief Executive Mark Zuckerberg of Facebook had commented during the annual developer conference of the company in San Francisco that `you will never have to call 1.800 Flowers again’. Facebook is seen having many distinct benefits even though messaging platforms comprising of Kik, slack and Telegram already tend to have chatbots.

Facebook for one tends to control a huge trove of data on the estimated 1.6 billion people who utilise the main service and the 900 million who tend to use Messenger. This enables developers to create chatbots which can personalize jobs like making an airline booking or a reservation in a restaurant. Lauren Kunze, principal at Pandorabots, which has been constructing and organizing chatbots for companies since 2002, had stated that `from the enterprise or developer point of view, access to those 1.6 billion people seems very exciting. People like a personalized experience and when the chatbot can remember personal details as well as follow up’.For instance, CNN’s bot can learn user’s news preferences, and accordingly recommend articles and summaries.

Progressively Adding Features to Messenger

Last month, after an experimental Microsoft Corp bot, named Tay had released a barrage of racist and sexist tweets on being manipulated by Twitter users, tech companies will have to approach chatbots more carefully. The company had instantly pulled Tay from the Internet. Facebook has been progressively adding features to Messenger since it turned off as a separate app in 2014 and last year it had partnered with Uber and Lyft so that individuals could order a car without the need of going through the ride sharing app. Besides this it had also partnered recently with KLM Royal Dutch Airlines in order that customers could receive flight updates as well as booking confirmation through Messenger.

Chatbots could thus automate such interactions eliminating customer service calls. Chris Fohlin, director of client strategy at consulting agency Engine Digital had commented that its `offloading the pain of navigating those phone systems’.Making Messenger the go-to-place for business-to-person interaction, Facebook expects that people would spend more time in using the app and depend on it for day-to-day tasks.

Carbon Fiber Strings Could Save a Building From an Earthquake


First Seismic Reinforcement Structure – Kengo Kuma

The first seismic reinforcement structure in the world, using a carbon fiber material has been designed by Kengo Kuma, a world renowned architect. The Komatsu Seiten Fabric Laboratory, based in Ishikawa, Japan, with a new building material had been proposed by a fiber company. The earlier head office building of Komatsu Seiren had been renovated with the first seismic reinforcement in the world that tends to use the super-light seismic reinforcement material known as CABKOMA Strand Rod, which is a thermoplastic carbon fiber composite a seismic reinforcing material.

Use of textiles as building materials proposed included `greenbiz’ an ultrafine porous spongy ceramic base that is eco-friendly building material. This resulted in the building that was recreated as the `fa-bo’ fabric laboratory. Seismic retrofitting is said to be an important attempt which needs bolting an older building to its foundation in order that it does not shake apart in the event of an earthquake. However, based on the age of the building and the type of material it is made of, an out-dated retrofit has the capability of destroying a structure in a different way-aesthetically.

Strings of Carbon Fiber – Solution

A Japanese company is of the belief that strings of carbon fiber could be the solution to the problem and so it wrapped them around its headquarters to determine how this could work. CABKOMA; The fabric, a carbon fiber core, wrapped in added fibers, is coated with a thermoplastic resin. A 520-foot piece weighs less than a garden hose and can be carried in one hand.

Carbon fiber is said to be one of the best ways of absorbing shockwaves without adding substance and has a very great tensile strength. Moreover, CABKOMA is also as strong as steel though 90% lighter. Unlike the rigid rods that may need drilling for installation, the Strand Rod tends to be flexible, whisper-thin band which is secured utilising screws and an adhesive. It seems to work in a similar manner as the traditional brace-and-bolt, though rather than anchoring the walls of the building to its foundations, it tethers the roof of the structure to the ground so that when it tends to shake, the complete building moves together.

Strand Rods as Architectural Component

Komatsu Seiten had engaged the legendary architect Kengo Kumu together with Ejiri Structural Engineers to work together on a visionary application for its headquarters and used the Strand Rods as an architectural component. The strands tend to swathe off the side of the building like a harp which are attached to the frame of the building below the ground.

This does not mean that Japan would be going wrapping all building like rubber band balls. With the space, the strands tend to add to a structure’s footprint. It is surely not practical for dense cities or taller building but it is certainly being used in protecting older, fragile landmark in a seismically active location which could not survive more invasive construction. Moreover, the thin ribbons of carbon fiber tend to look attractive on their own and one can imagine it as a well-designed architectural safety net.

Wednesday 13 April 2016

The Ransomware That Knows Where You Live


Ransomware - Scam Email Quoting People’s Postal Addresses -

As per security researcher, an extensively distributed scam email quoting people’s postal addresses tends to link to a dangerous kind of ransomware. After getting to know of an episode of BBC Radio 4’s You and Yours that discuss about the phishing scam, Andrew Brandt, of US firm Blue Coat had got in touch with BBC. He found that the emails seemed to be linked to ransomware known as Maktub.

The malware tends to encrypt the files of the victims, demanding a ransom to be paid before they can be unlocked. The recipients were told by the phishing emails that they owed hundreds of pounds to UK businesses and that they could print an invoice by clicking a link. However, according to Mr Brandt that leads to malware. One of the said emails had been received by You and Yours reporter, Shari Vahl. Mr Brandt had informed BBC that `it was incredibly fast and by the time the warning message had appeared on the screen, it had already encrypted everything of value on the hard drive, it happened in seconds’. Maktub does not only demand a ransom but it tends to increase the fee which needs to be paid in bitcoin, as time passes.

Addresses Highly Precise

One of the website connected with the malware had explained that during the first three days, the fee is at 1.4 bitcoins or around $580 and rises to 1.9 bitcoins or $799 after the third day. The recipients are told by the phishing emails that they owe money to British business and charities when they do not owe them anything. One of the organisations named was Koestler Trust, a charity that tends to help ex-offenders and prisoners produce artwork.

Chief executive Sally Taylor told You and Yours that they rely on generous members of the public and was very distressed when they discovered that people felt they had received emails from them asking for money when they had not been generated by them at all. A remarkable feature of the scam was that they included not only the victim’s name but the postal address as well. Several of them including the BBC staff had noticed that the addresses were generally highly precise.

Data Derived from Leaked/Stolen Databases

As per cybersecurity expert at the University of London, Dr Steven Murdoch, it is yet not clear how scammers were able to gather people’s addresses and link them to names and emails. The data could have been derived from a number of leaked or stolen databases for instance making it difficult in tracking down the source.

Many of the people had got in touch with You and Yours team to inform that they were concerned that the data could have been taken from their eBay account since their postal addresses had been stored in the same format there as they seemed to appear in the phishing emails.

The firm had mentioned in a statement that eBay tends to work aggressively in protecting customer data and privacy which is their highest priority and they are not aware of any link between this new phishing scam and the data of eBay. In an effort of creating the safest, environment possible for their customers, they tend to constantly update their approach to customer data security.

Whatsapp Encrypts Messages for all its Users

Whatsapp Encrypts

WhatsApp – Encrypting Messages For all Users

WhatsApp, the instant messaging service, is intending to reassure its users regarding their privacy by encrypting messages sent through its app. Whatsapp CEO Jan Koum, in his blog post had mentioned recently that every conversation on the messaging service irrespective of it being a private or group chat would have complete end-to-end encryption, making the recipient the only individual who can view the message. Koum writes in his blog on the WhatsApp website that `no one can see inside the message, neither cybercriminals, nor hackers nor oppressive regimes and not even us’.

He adds that end-to-end encryption tends to help in making communication through WhatsApp private, a kind of face-to-face conversation. The WhatsApp website has explained that end-to-end encryption tends to work by securing messages with a lock that only the recipient together with the sender are capable of unlocking and read with a special key. For additional protection, each message sent has its own unique lock and key which happens automatically and even WhatsApp cannot read any of the messages. This announcement of WhatsApp comes in the wake of one of the most high profile clashes in argument regarding encryption together with data privacy between the government and a technology company.

Depends on Signal Protocol

The App’s users are not only protected by encryption but it is a strong encryption. In a technical white paper released on April 4, the underlying cryptographic exchange has been described in details by WhatsApp, which tends to take place when users message each other. It depends on the Signal Protocol that has been created at Open Whisper Systems and uses double ratcheting in providing forward secrecy even when the session keys are compromised which means that if a rival is capable of uncovering the cryptographic keys used by the app, it will not compromise communications that are made with contacts in the past and will remain protected.

Strong and well-vetted cryptographic building blocks are used by The Signal Protocol for constructing and transmitting messages inclusive of ECDH utilising Curve25519. Besides the service’s strong end-to-end provisions, all the communication between the client apps together with the WhatsApp server have been encrypted utilising Noise Pipes from the Noise Protocol Framework.

WhatsApp – Over One Billion Users Globally

The FBI had asked Apple in February, to unlock one of the iPhones of San Bernardino shooters so that the authorities could access his data. Apple had refused asserting a breach of privacy and the FBI had taken Apple to court though eventually they were able to unlock the phone without the help of Apple and the suit was dropped.

However, the case stirred national debate over whether it would set a pattern for authorities in the future to unlock other phones and the question of privacy. Koum wrote that for him it was personal and he had grown up in the USSR during Communist rule and the fact that people could not speak freely was one of the reasons his family had moved to the United States. Messaging service of WhatsApp had been purchased by Facebook for an amount of $19 billion in 2014 and accounts for over one billion users globally.

Tuesday 12 April 2016

Large Scale Painting of Photographs by Interactive Optimization

 Interactive Optimization

Dartmouth Researcher Invents Smart Paint Spray

A Dartmouth researcher together with his colleagues has invented a smart paint spray which robotically reproduces photographs as significant murals. The computerized technique that spray paints a photo is not expected to issue a trend of giant graffiti, but can be utilised in digital fabrication, digital and visual arts, together with artistic stylization and other application. The findings had appeared in the journal Computer & Graphics and the project is in partnership between ETH Zurich, Disney Research Zurich, Dartmouth College and Columbia University. The spray can system is an innovative twist on computer aided painting that had been initiated in early 1960s and is well-studied topic among artists and scientist.

 Spray paint tends to be economical and easy to use making large-scale spray painted mural common in modern urban culture. However, it could be logistically and technically difficult for skilled artists in covering walls of buildings as well as other large surfaces. The researchers desired to create a method of helping non-artists in creating perfect reproductions of photographs as large-scale murals utilising spray painting and hence they developed a computer aided method which tends to use an ordinary paint can, tracking the position of the can related to the wall or canvas, recognizing what image it would want to paint.

Fast & Light-Weight/Two Webcams/QR Coded Cubes

As the person wave the pre-programmed spray can around the canvas, the system tends to automatically operate the spray on/off button to provide the specific image as spray painting. The prototype seems to be fast and light-weight and includes two webcams together with QR coded cubes for the purpose of tracking as well as a small actuation device for the spray can that is attached through a 3D printed mount. The paint commands are transmitted through radio directly connected to a servo-motor operating the spray nozzle.

On a close by computer, the real time process regulates the optimal amount of paint of the current colour to spray at the tracked location of the spray can. The outcome is that the painting portrays itself as the user waves the can around without the user needing to know the image beforehand.Owing to spray paint difficulty in obtaining permission foruniversity buildings, the researchers have tested the automated painting system on large sheets of paper gathered into mural-size paintings.

Permitting Unskilled Users – Creating Physical Piece of Art

Though this system seems to presently support only painting on flat surface, one possible advantage of the new technique over standard printing is that it could be usable on more complex curved painting surfaces. Co-author Wojciech Jarosz, assistant professor of computer science at Dartmouth who was a senior research scientist earlier at Disney Research Zurich stated that computationally assisted painting methods are limited to the computer and in this research, it is shown that by combining computer graphics and computer vision techniques, they can bring such assistance technology to the physical world even for very traditional painting medium which has created an unconventional kind of digital fabrication.

Their assistive approach seems to be like a modern take on `paint by numbers’ for spray painting and most important was that they wanted to maintain the aesthetic aspects of physical spray painting and the physical experience of holding and waving a physical spray can while permitting unskilled users in creating physical piece of art.

Interactive Screens on Your Packages

Interactive Screens

Interacting with Electronic Screen on Packaging

Due to a revolutionary development by scientists at the University of Sheffield, consumers would now be interacting with an electronic screen on packaging in the near future instead of reading a label. The scientists have come up with a new kind of digital screen which could one day feature on the packages that could be delivered at home. For instance, one could tap on the display to check from where it came from.

The scientists hadworked together with technology company Novalia in creating new ways of displaying information on packaging a change which could revolutionise the packaging industry. This kind of technology could be utilised in greeting cards or products wherein customers could receive a simple message. Difficult development could comprise of a countdown timer on the side of the packet indicating when a timed product would be available like hair-dye, pregnancy test or home-baking, utilising a traffic light system.

 Published in the IEEE Journal of Display Technology, the team had explained how a screen could be fixed onto packaging to display information. Procedure involves in printing electronic tracks onto paper and fixing low-cost electronics and a polymer LED display to the paper using adhesive which tends to conduct electricity.

Designed & Constructed Touch-pad Keyboard on Paper

Scientists from the University of Sheffield and Novalia working together had designed and constructed a touch-pad keyboard on the paper which enabled a user to selectively drive the LEDs in the display. The research has been supported by the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council- EPSRC and so far, the testing has been on paper though the process can probably be printed on other surfaces.

 The next step of the team is to develop completely flexible organic displays on plastic substrate which could then be fixed on the electronic tracks. The LED devices essentially should be low-cost and adequately flexible to be used on all packaging. Professor David Lidzey from the University’s Department of Physics and Astronomy had stated that labels on packaging can become more innovative and enable customers to interact with and explore new products.

The use of displays or light emitting panels on packaging would also permit companies to communicate brand awareness in a sophisticated way.

Brand Awareness – One of the Probable Uses of these Displays

Chris Jones of Novalia had said that the paper-based packaging industry is worth billions of dollars and this innovative system that is developed with the University of Sheffield could provide the manufacturers with a means of gaining market share by being capable of distinguishing its products from competitors.

Tech firm Novalia had helped in with the development of the new smart labelling and the process it utilised in creating it involves printing electronic tracks on paper and using a conductive adhesive in fixing low-cost electronics and polymer LED on the top.

Amazon and John Lewis could utilise the tech in customising their parcels as well as in creating interactive adverts on their boxes. Chris Jones of Novalia has stated that `brand awareness seems to be one of the probable uses of these displays.

Saturday 9 April 2016

Huawei P9 Smartphone Uses Leica Camera Tech

Huawei P9

Android Smartphone P9 Unveiled by Huawei – Dual Camera Technology

An Android smartphone was unveiled by Huawei which tends to use dual-camera technology enabling owners to refocus photos after they are taken. The outcome of the feature is an association between the Chinese tech firm and German camera maker Leica which means the P9 has the potential of creating shallow depth-of-field shots which is more commonly connected with bigger lenses.

According to analysts, the innovation can help Huawei in promoting itself as a premium brand as well as expand its market share. According to the research firm IDC, it is said that in 2015, the Shenzhen based company had shipped over 106 million handsets, representing 44.3% growth, the previous year. It was the quickest rise in sales of any major brands, putting Huawei in the third place with regards to market share.

But Apple still sold over double the amount of phone and Samsung had sold more than three times the number. Ian Fogg from IHS Technology consultancy had commented that the camera seems to be one of the things that define a premium smartphone and there is yet plenty of scope in improving the quality of the photography. Besides this, there are things which one can do when two camera sensors are put on the back which one can’t do with a single sensor.

Superior Performance in Low-Light Situations

Instead of providing users with the ability of taking two different kinds of photos, as in the case with LG’s dual-camera G5 handset, the P9 tends to combine the data from both its rear sensors in creating its 12 megapixel shots. One tends to capture red, green and blue – RGB information regarding the view while the other is limited to collecting monochrome image data.

The firm states that on utilising both types, the phone tends to deliver improved contrast, offering superior performance in low-light situations. However, the standout feature is the skillto stimulate wide aperture photography which is the effect of enabling more lights in a lens to create a shallow-depth-of-field. A shallow depth-of-field tends to create striking photographs of a topic with an unclear background. Photo fanatics often tend to spend huge sums on digital single-lens reflex cameras – DSLRs and large lenses to create the look.

Files Exported in RAW File Format

The P9, unlike the larger cameras, tends to permit users in changing the part of the image they desire to be in sharp focus after they have pressed the shutter button. This is made possible by the element that the two lenses of the phone slightly capture different views and built-in software analyses the differences to assume depth information.

On the other hand, the files can be exported in the RAW file format for the purpose of editing on a PC and the ability is made available only in stills mode but cannot be used to refocus captured videos. Lytro had earlier made attempts at selling specialist cameras which offered a similar refocusing ability but had given up on the consumer market after admitting that the rise of smartphone photography, its appeal had been restricted.

Refocusing functions had also been offered by Nokia and HTC on some of their handsets though they had achieved the effect in a different way. An industry-watcher had stated that the tie-up with Leica should inspire possible buyers not to let goof the dual-camera facility of Huawei, as being a ploy.

Airbus Patents Radical Design With Wraparound Engines Along its Body


Airbus Patent – Replacement of Large Engines under Wing

Airbus has filed a patent which recommends the replacement of the large engines under the wing with multi-fan jet engines which wrap around the fuselage of the airplane. The design is said to scoop up air, pushing it over the exterior of the engine in order to provide extra thrust. However, the engine nacelles would be blocking the sky-high views that flyers tend to enjoy from the window seat.

The window seat is a sought after section on an airplane but the new design would now make it the least favourite place. The aircraft manufacturers seem to be working constantly in enhancing propulsive efficiency without the need of changing the design of the plane. The patent published on Espacenet reads - `in the aeronautical industry, the current trend in turbofan design is to increase the bypass ratio in order to improve fuel consumption through increased propulsive, efficiency and to reduce noise on ground.

In conventional turbofan engines, the pursuit of higher propulsive efficiency needs increasing the fan diameter in order to produce a higher by-pass mass flow at lower slipstream velocities’. Sources reports that some may state that several airliners tend to use jet engines though they essentially use the ones which look like jet engines and are actually just turbofans.

Quest for Powerful & Efficient Engines

The difference between the two is, a jet engine tends to use thrust of the exhaust in order to manoeuvre and this system seems to work amazingly in small fighter planes though to use it for a commercial airliner would need too much fuel. A turbofan engine tends to have a turbo jet engine as its centre and the thrusts seems to move the craft though it uses a huge fan on the front to scoop up air and push it over the outside engine to provide the extra thrust for the plane.

The quest for more powerful and efficient engines, according to Airbus has led to bigger and bigger turbofans which are quickly reaching the design limitations. Multi-fan engine can be fixed to the fuselage of the aircraft which will enable the fans to scoop up airflow, moving it over the engine and providing the plane with an extra thrust.

View Blocked by Engine Nacelles

But the drawback is that the flyers would not be in a position to catch the sites from the sky anymore since their view would be blocked by the engine nacelles. Airbus also intends proposing a design which would be replacing the huge fan with a group of smaller ones but this is not a new concept.

 The firm has additional details in the patent which have not been taken into account earlier. The patent states that `a multi-fan engine including a gas turbine engine, a casing and fans encased by geared rings that connect with the geared rings of an adjacent fan like the rotation of one fan rotates the other fans’.By applying the geared rings to individual fans, the amount of torque is controlled by adjusting linear actuators.

The design would tend to be lighter since the need for heavy gearboxes and shafts that generally sit adjacent to the fan will not be needed which will free up plenty of space. With the use of these components, the inspections and servicing of the fans would be more convenient.