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AR – Technology at its best!

Over the past couple of years we’ve all been going gung ho about VR. It opened up a lot of possibilities and entertainment to people. But amidst all of this noise and talk, there was something similar that was preparing itself for the big launch.

Augmented Reality or commonly called as AR, it is!! Augmented Reality turns the environment around you into a digital interface by placing virtual objects in the real world, in real-time. Augmented Reality can be seen through a wide variety of experiences.

Let’s imagine you’re a fighter pilot flying over a warzone with anti-aircraft fire shooting up at you. You really have to concentrate and looking down at all the gauges on your instrument panel is a distraction you can do without. Fortunately, you’re wearing what’s called a heads-up display (HUD), a set of goggles with built-in, miniaturized computers that automatically project instrument readings so they “float” in front of your eyes. You can find out everything you need to know without taking your eyes off the sky.

The first AR technology was developed in 1968 at Harvard when computer scientist Ivan Sutherland (named the “father of computer graphics”) created an AR head-mounted display system. In the following decades, lab universities, companies,  and national agencies further advanced AR for wearables and digital displays. These early systems superimposed virtual information on the physical environment (e.g., overlaying a terrain with geolocal information), and allowed simulations that were used for aviation, military and industrial purposes.

How Does AR work?

You’re out and about in the real world with your laptop, netbook, or cellphone, it’s easy enough to get information: just bring up Google and type in some words. In the brave new world of augmented reality, it’s even easier: you get the extra information automatically. That means your portable computing device needs some automatic way of finding out where you are or what you’re looking at—a problem known as tracking.

 

Where have we seen it being used?

The first commercial AR application appeared in 2008. It was developed for advertising purposes by German agencies in Munich. They designed a printed magazine ad of a model BMW Mini, which, when held in front of a computer’s camera, also appeared on the screen. Because the virtual model was connected to markers on the physical ad, a user was able to control the car on the screen and move it around to view different angles, simply by manipulating the piece of paper. The application was one of the first marketing campaigns that allowed interaction with a digital model in real time.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HTYeuo6pIjY

 

Other brands started adopting this idea of situating content on a screen and having consumers interact with it through physical tracking markers. We start seeing more advanced versions by brands such as National Geographic in 2011, which showed rare or extinct animal species as if they were walking through a shopping mall; Coca-Cola in 2013, which also simulated environmental problems, such as ice melting right beside you in a shopping mall; and Disney in 2011, which showed cartoon characters on a large screen in Times Square interacting with people on the street.

In each of these examples, the AR technology was used to engage customers at events or in public spaces. These types of displays aren’t always scalable, as they require considerable investment—but we still see them today. For instance, Skoda ran a campaign in 2015, placing an AR mirror in a Victoria railway station in London, so that people passing by could customize a car and then see themselves driving it on a large screen.

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RgRye1eXUtA

 

Know more:

http://www.informit.com/articles/article.aspx?p=2516729&seqNum=3

http://www.realitytechnologies.com/augmented-reality

http://www.creativeguerrillamarketing.com/augmented-reality/10-examples-augmented-reality-retail/

http://www.cmo.com/features/articles/2017/7/13/5-realworld-examples-of-augmented-reality-innovation.html#gs.6TByO_E

 

 

Bitcoin- A Fair Coin?

What is Bitcoin?

Don’t worry. You don’t have to understand the technical nuances behind the screen to use Bitcoin. What you need to know is that Bitcoin is the currency of the Internet. It’s similar to paper money, like the Swiss franc, the euro or the US dollar. That is, it has no hard, inner worth, only the worth assigned to it by the issuer. Unlike national currencies, however, Bitcoin is issued by private entities. For the franc and co., the respective country’s national bank stands behind the currency. This is not the case with Bitcoin. And another big difference between conventional currencies and Bitcoin: you can’t hold a Bitcoin in your hand. It’s purely digital, not physical.

 

How do I get one?

In the meantime, you can acquire Bitcoin at selected cash machines (ATMs) in many cities. In Zurich there’s one at the Café Schoffel in the Niederdorf neighborhood. Otherwise, you buy Bitcoin offline for cash or on an online exchange. For offline purchases, look for a trustworthy dealer on localbitcoins.com. To find a good selection of online exchanges, take a look at bitcoincharts.com. And, of course, you can sell your products or services for Bitcoin in order to acquire the currency. Or, you can generate Bitcoin yourself.

Ok, I have one – But where do I store/save?

They may be virtual but you still need a wallet for your Bitcoins and your wallet has to have two “sides” a public side for receiving Bitcoin payments and a private one for you to store or move your Bitcoin.For your Bitcoin wallet one option is to install a software package on you computer. Either multibit.org or electrum.org might be a good place to start. You can also create an online Web wallet and for beginners, blockchain.info is a good address. It offers a sensible compromise between security and user-friendliness. They also offer a trial wallet without having to register, so you can decide if the service suits you or not.

 

What can I do with it?

In the meantime, not only online shops and services accept Bitcoin. Bricks-and-mortar shops and even hotels are taking payment in the currency. At present in Switzerland, some seventy business accept payment in Bitcoin. A good overview of this growing list can be found at coinmap.org. Of course, it’s easier to spend Bitcoin online. At the moment, bitcoinstore.com is the flagship of the Bitcoin retail movement, trying to establish the currency’s functionality. Prices are often lower than Amazon’s although high shipping costs erase much of that advantage, at least to Switzerland. You can cash in your Bitcoin holdings in exchange for precious metals at coinabul.com. And the currency is also accepted at the money museum in Zurich, the first and perhaps still the only museum in Europe to honor Bitcoin.

How much is it worth for?

Like any market, the exchange rate for Bitcoin responds to changes in supply and demand. At the moment Bitcoin’s value is rising as its spreads globally as the number of users grows. The first Bitcoin transaction was only in January 2009, when Bitcoin had no fixed value versus another currency. The first real business was done with Bitcoin a good year later, in Florida, when two pizzas were purchased for BTC 10,000. In February 2011 a Bitcoin exchange rate of one-to-one was fixed for the US dollar and about a year later it reached about fifteen dollars per Bitcoin. The upward trend continued, recently rising to several hundred US dollars per Bitcoin. That said, the exchange rate has seen large swings, with gains or losses of as much as 20% in a day not uncommon. This makes Bitcoin an interesting addition to a diversified portfolio of investments, but less well suited for retirement savings. As

 

Know More:

https://www.coindesk.com/bitcoin-explained-five-year-old/

https://www.buybitcoinworldwide.com/beginners-guide/

https://blockgeeks.com/guides/what-is-bitcoin/

https://www.buybitcoinworldwide.com/price/

 

 

 

Cryptocurrency – Mining Digitally!

It’s in the news, a part of every conversation we have. The markets are going crazy over it, prices are soaring high seeing growth ten folds. Bitcoins, Litecoin etc are just types of this.

So, what is that we’re talking about? Cryptocurrency it is!! Let’s delve a little deep into understanding what a cryptocurrency is.

Cryptocurrencies, sometimes called virtual currencies, digital money/cash, or tokens, are not really like U.S. dollars or British pounds. They live online and are not backed by a government. They’re backed by their respective networks. Technically speaking, cryptocurrencies are restricted entries in a database. Specific conditions must be met to change these entries. Created with cryptography(codes), the entries are secured with math, not people.

 

Restricted entries are published into a database, but it’s a special type of database that is shared by a peer-to-peer network. For example, when you send some Bitcoin to your friend, you’re creating and sending a restricted entry into the Bitcoin network. The network makes sure that you don’t have the same entry twice; it does this with no central server or authority. Following the same example, the network is making sure that you didn’t try to send your friend and your another friend the same Bitcoin.

The peer-to-peer network solves the “double-spend” problem (you sending the same Bitcoin to two people) in most cases by having every peer have a complete record of the history of all the entries made within the network. The entire history gives the balance of every account including yours

Entries are the representation of cryptocurrency.

Cryptocurrencies are generated by the network in most cases to incentivize the peers, also known as nodes and miners, to work to secure the network and check entries. Each network has a unique way of generating them and distributing them to the peers.

 

Bitcoin, for example, rewards peers (known as miners on the Bitcoin network) for “solving the next block.” A block is a group or entries. The solving is finding a hash that connects the new block with the old one. This is where the term blockchain came from. The block is the group of entries, and the chain is the hash. Hashes are a type of cryptologic puzzle. Think of them as Sudoku puzzles that the peers compete to connect the blocks.

 

Know More:

https://blockgeeks.com/guides/what-is-cryptocurrency/

https://www.quora.com/What-is-cryptocurrency-and-bitcoin-And-how-does-it-work-to-make-money

https://www.forbes.com/sites/bernardmarr/2017/01/24/a-complete-beginners-guide-to-blockchain/

https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/pwc-unveils-infographic-blockchain-technology-ankur-agrawal/

 

Cześć Poland…. Says Android Pay!!

Cześć Poland…. Says Android Pay!!

 

More and more, people are paying for items in the real world using their smartphones, thanks to the introduction of mobile payment services. One option is Android Pay, developed by Google to be used on both Android smartphones and Android Wear-based smartwatches. In this article, we will give you all the information you need about Android Pay, including its history, how and where to use it, and most importantly what banks currently support it.

What is Android Pay?

Android Pay was first announced by Google at its 2015 I/O developer conference, and it officially launched a few months later on Sept. 11, 2015 in the U.S. Android Pay is a successor, kind of, to the older Google Wallet, which is still around but is now used by people to send money to others. Android Pay, on the other hand, is a full mobile payment system, designed to let people purchase items and services both online and in the real world.

While it launched first in the U.S., Android Pay has since expanded its reach and is now available from banks and other financial institutions in the UK, Canada, Ireland, Poland, Singapore, Australia, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Belgium, Japan, Russia and New Zealand. Google launched a separate payment service, Google Tez, in the huge market of India. It works with the Indian government’s Unified Payments Interface (UPI) for mobile transactions.

 

How does it work?

Using Google/Android Pay is simple. Just wake up your phone (you don’t even have to open an app or unlock it), hold it to the payment terminal, and voilà! Your payment is done. After you check out, you’ll get helpful information on your phone about your recent transactions.

Where and how can I use it?

Android Pay is continuing its slow expansion around the world. The mobile payment platform went live in Poland with support for 400,000 points of sale and a handful of banks…

Android Pay in Poland is supported by Alior Bank, Bank Zachodni WBK, mBank and T-Mobile Banking Services.

In terms of retailers, Android Pay in Poland is supported at pretty much any location that has the required NFC terminal hardware, which is available at more than 400,000 locations in the country.

 “We are very glad that Polish users of Android devices can now benefit from easy and secure payments. Using Android Pay is safer and much faster than searching the wallet to find a plastic card. Customers can pay Android Pay more than 400,000 points of sale in Poland and soon in mobile applications.”

 

Know more:

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Living in real time – A view from Marketing!!

Real-Time Marketing has been all the rage since the lights went out in the Superdome during the third quarter of Super Bowl XLVII. We’re all aware of Oreo’s quick response to the blackout. It was their agency 360i, who, armed with a social media war room and lots of dollars, managed to capitalize on a captive audience who could not take their eyes off of a dimly lit Superdome. It was perfect, the message heard ’round the world – Power out? No problem – YOU CAN STILL DUNK IN THE DARK.

 

So what happened after the tweet heard ’round the world? Lots of brands assembled specialized social media teams, built war rooms and challenged their agencies to bring them an opportunity to cash in on the real-time marketing phenomenon. There is no telling how many monitors were hung from walls in impressive formations, all intent on catching the big moment. This paved way for the phenomeonon that is called as ‘Real Time Marketing’.

 

 

What do geeks Think of it?

The definition of Real Time Marketing published by Paul Jasper in Digital Marketing Magazinge states that ‘Real-time marketing (RTM) is the ability for brands to engage with their customers based on real-time information, such as their behaviour and actions on a website, changes to their data, or even external news and breaking events. The latter is most notably seen on social media platforms such as Twitter, with brands like Oreo in particular enhancing its online persona through real-time marketing activities.

This strategy sees brands not only focusing on a fixed marketing strategy that adheres to a strict schedule, but a strategy that is more flexible, focused on breaking news, relevant trends and immediate customer feedback.

What does it mean to you & I?

Real time marketing, in a nutshell, is marketing in response to events that have just occurred. It involves taking advantage of the present, and living in the here and now, and incorporating all of that into a marketing strategy. The Oreo tweet is a prime example of how a brand tapped into a real-time event and sent out a branded message that resonated with audiences. The timing couldn’t have been better; millions of people watch the Super Bowl, giving Oreo a chance to put out a message with enormous reach. Real time marketing is best used in conjunction with social media because of social media’s power of interacting with the masses in real time, right now, as it’s happening (live!). You can quickly respond to an event with a clever remark or a witticism, slap together an eye-catching photo, and voila – get attention for it. This works because we as a society are all about the here and now. We’re all about the latest craze, or the Big Event, or what celebrities are doing, or what’s going on in the world around us in this moment. And whenever a brand can use that energy and capitalize on it with a branded message, magic happens.

Some Examples – Only For U!

Who’s the king???

“People don’t care how much you know, until they know how much you care.”    -Theodore Roosevelt

In the wake of recent years, marketing has turned out to be the most pivotal aspects to be mastered by pretty much anyone trying to build, maintain and increase his/her personal brand. Expertise, along with quality content & products and/or services, has been key in shaping impactful businesses since the dawn of time.

However, alongside those factors, customer satisfaction has become the X factor that now separates successful businesses from unsuccessful ones. Those who can and know how to engage with and keep their customers happy are those who thrive, rather survive in today’s ‘dog eat dog’ environment.

One of the main reasons for this customer-centred strategy shift is the upper-hand that the latter, now has more than one option to voice out their opinion/feedback which the world can get to know, all with a swipe.

In this new digitally developed world, customers can leave their thoughts and opinions on basically every matter, freely and without reservation. Given this, it is essential for every company to have an effective customer relationship management strategy in place; one that deals with all aspects of acquiring, engaging, and growing customers.

Customer first” is no longer just a slogan; companies must place their clients at the centre of their attention, and let them know that their opinion matters more than anything else.

They should be given the opportunity to directly interact with brands, to talk about them, to propose new ideas, and, eventually, to share their brand-related experiences and passions with the world: that is how a brand can eventually achieve so-called ‘exponential growth’.

That is how corporate giants like Amazon, Nike, Apple, and JetBlue came to prominence in a very short amount of time, and that is how they have prospered even through hardships and difficult times, such as the great 2008 recession. They have learned how to sell and how to properly present themselves to their customers and, in doing so, they have been able to increase their value proposition without cutting the prices charged.

The current age has a new standard, one that sets the bar much higher: create and maintain active relationships with customers, engage with them, and eventually turn them into brand ambassadors.

 

Reference:

https://www.forbes.com/sites/coxbusiness/2015/10/20/the-importance-of-customer-service-in-driving-your-business/#24e5bb1e1043

http://blog.clientheartbeat.com/why-customer-satisfaction-is-important/

 

Air Umbrella

The original umbrella went from shading people from the sun and protecting from  rain, to being a high tech gadget.

The umbrella as we know it, with its whales and its canvas, will it soon be obsolete? This is, in any case, the Chinese inventors’ bet of the Air Umbrella. This umbrella has only a handle, which hides an air propulsion system that generates, as soon as it is activated, a sort of dome-shaped air shield capable of deflecting raindrops.

24 hours from the closing of their fundraising on the crowdfunding site kickstarter.com, they had already raised almost $ 100,000 which is 10 times the amount sought.

The Air Umbrella consists of a cylindrical handle containing a lithium battery, with a switch at its lower end and a half-sphere at its upper end surmounting an engine through which air passes. In this half-sphere, a fan draws air to its base to drive it at high speed towards the periphery, creating a virtual protective dome above the wearer’s head. Prototypes developed to date have a range of 15 to 30 minutes depending on size. The wind would be powerful enough for two people to be protected from drops. It will obviously be possible to adjust the air power to extend the protection. If in theory the idea seems to work, one is entitled to question the effectiveness of this system in practice. In addition, by protecting you, the Air Umbrella could well water your neighbors even more on the sidewalks.

Air Umbrella

AirBlow 2050

The design of the Air Umbrella is a little more different from the AirBlow 2050’s. While the latter retains the rounded shape of the handle of an umbrella, the first has totally revised the appearance of the umbrella to make it more design and futuristic.

The producers of the object, installed in China are making great efforts to improve the appearance, grip and battery life of the product.

There is also the question of the ecological impact of such an invention: why use a lithium battery to protect itself from the rain, while a simple canvas can do just as much without energy expenditure?

 

Sources:

https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1243275397/air-umbrella

http://www.iflscience.com/technology/air-umbrella-may-revolutionize-dealing-rainy-days/

https://www.cnet.com/news/umbrella-keeps-you-dry-with-invisible-force-field-of-air/

 

MOOV Now

The least we can say is that the MOOV Now brand is easily recognizable thanks to its perforated silicone strap. What differentiates itself from the strong competition of the market of “wearables”. Now is quite discreet and can be forgotten. Its size is ideal for both men and women. At the same time there is no screen! Yes as you may have guessed, no screen on this minimalist bracelet that makes it strong and weak.

The MOOV Now is an activity bracelet that has many smart sensors that measure: steps, calories burned, activity time but also the range of motion and several measures specific to running, swimming and cycling. Via the GPS of the smartphone, the MOOV Now can measure the altitude difference, the speed, the distance … The analysis of the sleep is also available. The strong point of this bracelet is its battery: 6 months of autonomy. No need to recharge the bracelet every week. It connects Bluetooth to the smartphone, is compatible with Apple Health. It is completely waterproof up to 50m deep. Innovation is especially the coaching part in real time thanks to artificial intelligence.

The associated mobile app with MOOV Now plays a very important role in the tracker experience. This one does not have a screen, all information goes through the iPhone or Android app. This means that the bracelet is smartphone dependent (no problem for me). The app Moov is easy to use, clear and pleasant to use with a menu of 3 tabs “Activities”, “History” and “My Progress” as well as shortcuts to the categories “Running”, “Cycling”, “Swimming” “,” Cardio “and” Boxing “.

This bracelet is a good motivator thanks to his coach who speaks to you.

Unlike the session mode of the Nike + FuelBand, to record an activity it is imperative to choose the session before starting. It is vital to remember that it is not possible to tag an activity posteriori. Not annoying but must have the reflex. Therefore, we choose for example free running session, the app asks us to place the Now at the ankle and press the tracker, recognize it, then GO! It’s the same for biking. Depending on the session we can have feedback in real time.

For swimming it’s the same thing but with the bracelet on the wrist. Therefore, without a screen, it is impossible to know where we are at. One of the shortcomings of MOOV Now because we can count its lengths, we are not safe to be wrong. On the other hand, when one analyzes the session after having dried one’s hands to access one’s smartphone, the data is extremely advanced. It gives us absolutely precise data about our swimming training: number of lengths, type of swimming, number of movements by length and even the time of turn!

In addition to all those benefits stated above, the Now of MOOV is affordable to everyone! It cost between USD 50 and USD 80.

 

Sources:

https://welcome.moov.cc/

http://www.techradar.com/reviews/moov-now

http://www.trustedreviews.com/reviews/moov-now

https://www.wareable.com/sport/moov-now-review

http://www.mantality.co.za/moov-fitness-coach.html

 

cTrader

cTrader is an ECN forex trading platform developed by Spotware. Since its launch cTrader has become a platform of choice for many major ECN brokers like Pepperstone and a serious competitor of the famous MetaTrader platform. Visually, the cTrader platform is extremely clean and attractive. The designers have gone to great lengths to make the interface intuitive and easy to use.

cTrader is the first retail forex trading platform to offer three types of market depths (order book). The standard depth allows aggregate quotes from liquidity providers to be viewed to help traders become familiar with market dynamics. The depth of the prices shows the available liquidity for each price. The depth of the VWAP (Volume-weighted average price) shows the average price exchanged for a certain period.

CTrader’s charts offer 26 time units and 6 zoom levels to suit all trading strategies. A double click at the top of each graph makes it possible to place an order very quickly. The platform has all the necessary tools for technical analysis (trend indicators, oscillators, volatility measures, etc.) It is also possible to create custom indicators via the cAlgo algorithmic trading platform.

All graphics are detachable and act as a stand-alone desktop application. Where other platforms only show the average price or the Bid / Ask lines, cTrader shows both the buy / sell lines on each chart, as well as the entry points, stop loss and take profit which are Editable directly on the graph.

For short-term traders and scalpers, cTrader can display charts in ticks with a new bar for each tick or with an aggregated view of up to 55 ticks per bar.

The cAlgo platform, which is integrated with cTrader, enables the creation of trading robots and customized technical indicators in a way very similar to the Expert Advisors used on the Metatrader platform.

cMirror is a mirror trading application that allows traders to offer their trading strategies and signals. Other traders (investors) can copy the strategies automatically into their trading account.

Trading Central constantly analyzes more than 7000 values. Every day, specialized analysts propose investment strategies for all asset classes: equities, indices, currencies, commodities and interest rates.

Trading Central’s data showing likely scenarios are fully integrated into the cTrader platform. Trading signals can be created quickly in the direction of the most likely scenario with a Take Profit and Stop Loss suggested by Trading Central.

The platform is available for mobile and tablet devices, which means there are versions for Android and iOS. These mobile versions include a lot of the features of the desktop version. In addition to mobile support, there is also a web version that compares very favorably with the competition. cTrader therefore provides all the necessary support for traders who want to be permanently connected to the markets.

Sources:

https://spotware.com/ctrader/trading/ctrader-trading-platform

https://www.icmarkets.com/forex-trading-platform/ctrader/

http://www.traderslaboratory.com/forums/forex/14372-features-ctrader-ecn-platform.html

https://www.fxpro.pl/trading/products/download

https://financefeeds.com/ctrader-gets-9-new-features-as-platform-diversity-race-hots-up/

 

Self-sterilizing door handle

The public toilet door handles are certainly one of the dirtiest spots in the world. The hands of all the people who have been there have landed on it. A public toilet door handle contains, average, 1000 colonies per millimeter of infectious bacteria. And it’s huge!

But would not it be extraordinary if these nests with germs, that are the door handles, could have a system of self-cleaning that would get rid of bacteria?

This question, 2 young teenagers from Hong Kong have asked. And they even managed to find a solution, inventing a self-cleaning door handle, which exploits the kinetic energy of door movement.

Sun Ming Wong, 17, and King Pong Li, 18, have developed an anti-bacterial door handle that generates all the energy needed for its operation since the door moves. Titanium Oxide is known as one of the best anti-bacterial agents that exist, our two inventors of genius, have decided to coat the handle of this mineral, and to activate its anti-bacterial properties through an exhibition of UV light. it is important to note that UV rays boost the anti-germ properties of Titanium Oxide.

In order to have a permanent UV contribution, and thus increase the efficiency of the mineral, the handle has been designed in the form of a transparent glass cylinder. This cylinder is held at both ends by 2 metal rings. An LED bulb is incorporated inside the handle, it will be the latter that will emit UV rays. And to operate this LED bulb, the handle is equipped with a kind of gear that collects and the kinetic energy produced by the different movements of the door.

During the laboratory testing phases, this ingenious system was able to eliminate 99.8% of the bacteria. In other words, this is a real success because they have managed to find the best way to have clean door handles permanently, that consume no fossil energy, and that pose no danger to health. In addition, the concept is very sustainable as no detergent will have to be used to clean those door handles. What about the cost? Know that the calculations of our young inventors, the manufacture of a unit would cost only $ 13. Which, let’s face it, is not very expensive paid to no longer have to worry when you touch a door handle whatsoever, since it is immediately cleaned and disinfected after a small movement of the door .

The in-shop price is approximately EUR 70, which is an affordable price when it comes to home furniture and an even better price for health.

In addition, this kind of design has become fashionable.

Designer: Choi Bomi

 

Sources:

http://www.yankodesign.com/2010/12/16/what-a-sterile-door/

https://tomorrowsgadgets.wordpress.com/sterilizing-door-handle/

https://prezi.com/pnqhcz7xz44n/auto-sterlizing-door-handle/

https://inhabitat.com/chinese-teens-create-13-door-handle-that-instantly-kills-99-8-germs-on-contact/