Tag Archives: future

Smart Cities

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In order to overcome the increasing problems of urbanization, a smart city is a structure consisting primarily of ICTs to create, implement and promote sustainable development activities.

In fact, the intelligent network of linked objects and computers that relay data using wireless technologies and the cloud is an integral aspect of this ICT scheme.

Using laptops and handheld computers as well as wired vehicles and homes, individuals interact with smart city environments in various ways. Pairing sensors and information with the physical infrastructure and facilities of a city will lower costs and promote resilience.

 

Why do we need smart cities?

Urbanization is a non-ending phenomenon. Today, 54% of people worldwide live in cities, a proportion that’s expected to reach 66% by 2050. Combined with the overall population growth, urbanization will add another 2.5 billion people to cities over the next three decades.

Environmental, social, and economic sustainability is a must to keep pace with this rapid expansion that is taxing our cities’ resources.

 

Copenhagen is a smart city!

A public-private partnership, ProjectZero, has been developed to encourage and support the transition of Sonderborg into a ZEROcarbon society by 2029, focusing on infrastructure, transport, urban energy supply and data/ICT. Carbon-free development and progressive urbanization have been accomplished from the early planning level to the implementation process, relying on the active participation of residents.A core goal of ProjectZero is the provision of education at all levels. People are studying how green approaches, from Kindergarten to PhD, will help them to co-create a new world. The city’s happiness is reflected explicitly in the constructive interaction between individuals. In rural areas, private homes are being upgraded with electricity, linked to green district heating, and the use of heat pumps is increasing dramatically.Trained local banks, craftsmen and real estate agents support the citizens’ green journey by offering competitive services and solutions. The journey often starts with shifting to inexpensive LED-bulbs and biking to work. Professional municipal banks, craftsmen and real estate brokers promote the green path of individuals by offering competitive instruments and tactics. The journey also begins by switching and cycling to work to cheap LED-bulbs.

 

Sources: https://easyelectriclife.groupe.renault.com/en/outlook/cities-planning/smart-cities-top-5-smartest-cities-world/

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DRONE PROTECTION SYSTEM

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Over past years, drones evolved from an underdeveloped dream to highly advanced tool that is widely available. As a result, many companies thought of different ways to implement drones to their businesses. The new idea brought by Amazon or UPS is being able to deliver goods using drone technology. Undoubtedly, this project seems to be a huge step forward of delivery service. Nonetheless, Nirupam Roy and Nakul Garg, a pair of engineers at the University of Maryland, are afraid that drone deliveries will be frequent target of vandalism. As we know, a well-aimed stone or tennis ball can easily take a drone down. Therefore, the men decided to build a lightweight self-defence mechanism which lets a drone get out of the way of missile.

Dr Roy and Mr Garg think that they can replace power-hungry radar antennae or spinning lidar units by harnesses sound waves and the Doppler effect. The pair plan to equip drones with diminutive loudspeakers which would broadcast an ultrasonic tone outward from the drone. Also, those tiny microphones would listen for reflection for incoming objects. All those actions would give a chance to recognise the incoming threat and thus permit the drone to get out of its way.

Dr Roy and Mr Garg called their new invention DopplerDodge drone defence system. To test it, they have been throwing objects of various sizes at it and found out that system detects objects from distances of up to four metres away. However, the two researchers will attempt to raise the detection range to 30 meters, what will make drones impossible to hit by any irritated neighbour.

 

 

Sources:

https://www.economist.com/science-and-technology/2020/02/27/as-delivery-drones-multiply-they-may-need-to-protect-themselves

 

 

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The Vision of Tomorrow

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Image result for mercedes avtr

From the myriad of new technologies and innovations presented at CES, the world’s largest electronics show in Las Vegas, there was one concept that stood out in the spotlight – Mercedes-Benz VISION AVTR. This advanced vision transportation, inspired by James Cameron’s iconic movie, Avatar, is part of the Mercedes-Benz strategic agenda for the next years, which strives for a more sustainable future. The connection to the film results from its essential message: the Mercedes-Benz plan’s line of reasoning perfectly fits with Avatar’s environmental and spiritual themes. During the reveal, James Cameron, the director of Avatar, joint with Mercedes-Benz members, highlighted the importance of sustainability and coexistence of technology and humans not interrupting the development of nature.

 

This futuristic concept vehicle is said to be entirely eco-friendly. It is electric, carbon-neutral, and supposed to interact with the surrounding world. The exterior design of the car is supposed to blend in with nature. After opening, the doors are designed in a way to imitate the dragonfly, and at the back of the car are located 33 individual hatches that resemble breathing scales on a reptile.

Related image

The futuristic design even extends to the interior part of the vehicle, as there is no steering wheel, and it is driven using biometrics. You are one with the car. This concept of using a driver’s biometrics is adapted straight from the Avatar movie and should imitate the symbiotic relationship between the driver and the vehicle. The comfort and infotainment of electronics in this vehicle are based on the driver’s hand, as by waving gesture, we are able to drive the car.

 

After getting in, the system of control lights up on your right hand, and by gestures and waving, you can operate this eye-popping vehicle. By touching the element in the center of the car, it wakes up. The lights and element go up and down to imitate breathing and heartbeat. Not only does this car drive straight and backward as a regular car, but it also has an ability to drive sideways. Large odd flamboyant wheels enable this car to move, little resembling crab-walk, perpendicularly. The vehicle went through the real-life test on the roads of Las Vegas and proved itself to be ready to hit the streets to saturate them with the aspirational and eco-friendly idea of the future.

 

 

The presence of James Cameron and his collaboration with Mercedes-Benz is not only all about sustainability, but also the longly-awaited sequel of Avatar movie. Whether it is just a costly marketing or a real car that could be seen in some time on the market and roads, we cannot argue that it is a successful fulfillment of the statement “Vision of Tomorrow.”

 

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Google Stadia – future of gaming or just another trend that will fade away?

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What is Google Stadia and why is it revolutionary? Google Stadia is “a cloud gaming service operated by Google”. It allows playing and streaming games by fulfilling only 2 conditions: stable, high-speed internet connection and a single device. One of many to choose from: Google Chrome web browser, Pixel smartphone, Chrome OS and a special device Chromecast or a TV+controller set-up. These are not the most excessive demands. Basically, most people who game on a daily basis or stream it have access to both of them (most common and easily accessible would be Google Chrome web browser downloadable for free). Of course, you have to buy an Edition of Stadia (either Founders or Premiere) and later there is a subscription fee for using Stadia Pro. At launch, Premiere Edition was 119 pounds and subscription was 8.99 pounds per month.

It is revolutionary because we can play our favorite library of games from any place in the world without bringing our expensive gear PC or laptop. We can (theoretically) get rid of those at all if we want to rely simply on using Google games library. We can enjoy our favorite games from anywhere we want if the connection is quick enough and we have a proper subscription. Then we can stream at 60fps in 4k quality. That is the “sweet spot” for gamers. Of course, a person needs a controller either Xbox or PS4 dualshock. There is also a Google Stadia controller designed by Google. It has a few tricks up its sleeve. For instance, it has a built-in mic (with google assistant), responds quicker with the cloud or lets users take videos and pictures which instantly appear in Stadia app on smartphones.

Other companies such as Microsoft are developing something similar but Google launched their product first of the bunch. And it was not flawless. There were many issues that have disappointed the users close after launch.

To name a few the library was very limited at launch – just 22 games. There were a lot of issues with streaming, even high-speed stable connections were not enough and caused lag (or audio-lag) or connectivity problems. The Google Chromecast device seemed to overheat. There were instances that some games were able to break the hardware to the point of the necessity of buying a new one. Adding to that we need to buy the games from the store. So if we had any e.g. steam, uplay or origin based libraries we cannot use them. All the games must be purchased from google’s library.

Ultimately the main benefits of Stadia are the flexibility and the absence of the “box” under our TV. We just need a compatible controller of some sort, high-speed connection and a TV screen to play or stream our favorite games. In that fashion, we can do that all over the World if we fulfill those conditions. It is revolutionary and it might have a bright future. There is a low chance this direction will make gaming gear (PC’S, laptops, consoles) obsolete. But will Google Stadia build its userbase and improve the product by giving more possibilities? Will it add to it so we, as gamers, can throw our PC’s to trash or let them grab dust? Or will the connectivity and hardware issues burry the project deep in history to serve as another meme?? Only time will tell.

 

Sources:

https://www.wired.co.uk/article/google-stadia-review

https://stadia.dev/

https://www.techradar.com/reviews/google-stadia

https://www.theguardian.com/games/2019/nov/18/google-stadia-review-gylt

https://www.forbes.com/sites/paultassi/2019/11/18/google-stadia-launch-review-a-technical-conceptual-disaster/

https://www.ign.com/articles/2019/11/20/google-stadia-review

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Google_Stadia

Picture:

https://www.wprost.pl/_thumb/bd/ca/395d92dd5f74c9c18472c6ca1e00.jpeg

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ECO GARDEN: THE SMARTEST INTERACTIVE ECO SYSTEM

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The EcoGarden is a combination of a smart miniature greenhouse and a self-cleaning aquarium. This system helps you to grow up herbs or vegetables. What is the most exciting is that you can monitor and control your ecosystem remotely from your phone and it also gives you whole information about condition of your garden. Also, you can feed your fish or check temperature in aquarium.

So, how it works? 

‘Aquaponics’ – growing technique which uses the fish waste as the nutrient source for the plants, while the plants naturally filters the water which is recirculated back to the fish. A natural and effective way of cleaning your aquarium, creating the ultimate self-sustaining and resource efficient ecosystem where plants and fish live in symbiosis. It is absolutely eco-friendly, because it does not requires soil or chemical fertilizers.

Creators say that they want to grow smarter and more eco-friendly generation that will love nature and know how to behave with animals and plants.

Eco-garden has a plenty of benefits:

  • it is automated and very functional
  • has a nice design
  • fresh & organic produce
  • friendly with a nature

Today more and more people start to live in big city with busy lifestyle polluted environment. Therefore, people, who live in huge cities, can feel nature in their home. It is the best solution for all ages also, especially for children.

To conclude my words, I would say that our planet has enormous problem about over-population and air pollution. So, eco-garden can make your air fresh and atmosphere in your house greener.

References:

https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/ecogarden-world-s-smartest-interactive-ecosystem#/

and my own words))

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Smart pills to help diabetics?

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Scientists from MIT (Massachusetts Institute of Technology), Harvard Medical School, Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Novo Nordisk collaborate on creating a new kind of drug which aim is to make diabetics’ lives easier and less painful.

Nowadays people suffering from diabetes have to inject insulin multiple times per day to maintain a proper blood glucose level. For the last 100 years scientists tried to find a way to make insulin possible to be taken orally, which is quite a challenge, because many pharmaceutical compounds can’t survive the stomach’s harsh, acidic environment.

The new device created by previously mentioned scientists is about to finally allow diabetics to put injections off and make the whole process a lot easier. The smart pill works by attaching itself to the inside of the stomach and then injecting a payload through the gastric wall. Once the sugar glass that surrounds it is dissolved by acid in the stomach a tiny needle is released and a patient gets a proper dose of insulin.

The current injection is not the most comfortable process because of the pain related to inserting the needle into veins, right? Taking this smart pill orally means the injection will be done inside your stomach, which exactly means that you will not feel any pain. Why? According to Robert Langer, coauthor of the whole project, there are no pain receptors within the gastrointestinal tract.

Leopard Tortoise (Geochelone pardalis), Kruger National Park, South Africa

Moreover, the shape of the pill is inspired by the shape of a leopard tortoise’s shell, which automatically self-rights no matter how it lands – that kind of structure ensures that the device will attach to the gastric wall every time. It’s worth noting that the whole project is still at the proof-of-concept stage and has only been tested in animals, so the device won’t be available in the nearest future.

So, what are your thoughts on this topic? Do you think that in the futue smart pills will be a common thing? Let me know down below!

 

Sources:

https://www.technologyreview.com/the-download/612917/smart-pills-filled-with-tiny-needles-could-inject-medicine-directly-into-your/

https://www.sciencemag.org/news/2019/02/pills-armed-tiny-needles-could-inject-insulin-other-important-meds-directly-stomach?r3f_986=https://www.google.com/

 

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The biggest problem of the ecommerce fashion industry

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Year by year we can observe a huge increases in fashion sales. Online sales are slowly becoming the most important part of fashion companies’ revenues. But the Internet creates kind of a wall, which is slowing the whole process and contains us from successful shopping.

In the recent years, fashion and apparel has become the fastest growing e-commerce category and the second largest after consumer electronics, growing form $375.6 billion in 2012 to $481 billion last year. Analysts predicts that the revenue will reach over $700 billion by 2022.

Buying clothes online means that we are not able to try them on and make sure the size fits us. This is why fashion companies have to struggle with a huge percentage of returned products (especially in the winter holiday season), which is something between 30-50% of the whole sales, which causes tremendously high costs connected not only with a return shipping, but also other processes needed to get the product back to the stock. Returns are growing even faster than the revenues, increasing 94.8% over the most recently measured five-year period. Moreover, over 4B pounds of returned apparel end up in landfills annually.

“What we hope to do with technology is make that growth rate slower.” Said Roger Graell, director of e-commerce at Spain’s Mango, which expects to make at least one-fifth of sales online by 2020.

Since 2012 there was plenty of startups which were trying to solve the problem with size fitting. Millions of dollars were invested in projects which were making kind of virtual fitting rooms (Avametric, Fitiquette), 3D scanners (Body Labs, Nettelo) and AI based algorithms (Virtusize, Pixibo). Most of them do not survive these days.

However, in 2016 three Ukrainian engineers created a technology, which allows people to scan their bodies using a smartphone’s camera. Their startup (called 3DLook) is implementing its technology to fashion retailers’ online stores. Thanks to that customers are able to measure themselves by taking 2 photos (from the front and from the side) and thanks to that can find out what is the perfect size for them. Technology is simply comparing customer’s measurement with producer’s size table.

3DLook claims to use advanced machine learning, AI and image processing to achieve their results. Recently, they got funding of $1 million for further development. Their technology can be a huge step forward successful apparel online shopping and, according to my research, fashion retailers hope it to be so.

And what is your opinion on this case? How many times did you buy a wrong size of some new clothes? Do you think that such technology is going to solve this problem? Let me know down below!

 

Sources:

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-onlineapparel-returns-focus/online-clothing-retailers-hunt-for-better-fit-to-cut-costly-returns-idUSKCN1OK1E2

https://www.ted.com/talks/aparna_mehta_where_do_your_online_returns_go?language=en#t-98979

https://www.retaildive.com/news/forrester-online-fashion-spending-outpaces-overall-digital-sales/522227/

https://independentretailer.com/2018/12/27/ecommerces-serial-return-problem/

https://www.businessoffashion.com/articles/fashion-tech/can-technology-solve-fit-problem-fashion-e-commerce

https://www.shopify.com/enterprise/ecommerce-fashion-industry

https://techcrunch.com/2018/07/30/body-scanning-app-3dlook-raises-1-million-to-measure-your-corpus/

https://3dlook.me

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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A look into the future

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A couple of days ago, I found a very interesting video released by Microsoft in 2009. In this video which was called “Look to the Future”, the American company tried to imagine what our daily life would look like in 10-15 years. And after so much time, it is very interesting to see which predictions come true and which have remained just dreams.

My first observation is that the online translator, which quickly translates everything you say, somehow exists on Skype. Of course, it is not as sophisticated as shown in the picture and there are no such transparent interfaces yet, but the idea itself is exactly implemented. It is also very funny to see that in 2009, Microsoft believed that translucent interfaces are our future, which in my opinion are terribly inconvenient to use in practice.

Now take a look at the electronic boarding pass where you can see different data about your flight. Today, of course, all this would not make any sense, because these functions easily can be performed by our smartphones.

In general, there is a persistent feeling that no one in 2009 could even imagine that in the near future, smartphones would completely replace all terminals with them. Why should I display information on the glass, poke into translucent interfaces if this is all in my pocket?

The video also showed a very interesting concept: augmented or even mixed reality around us. I think that something similar is waiting for us in the near future, and the guys from Microsoft were absolutely right about this.  Also in this video was shown one of the trends of the last year, bending and frameless smartphones.

The only thing that always confused me in these concepts has always been complete isolation from reality and minimalism. For example, where can we put the battery? The last couple of years the issue of energy for a mobile device becomes the most important.

For example, behind this newspaper a power bank must precisely hide in order all this technology miracle could work. If you are interested, you can view the full version of this video under this post.

Sources:

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCc3pNIRzIZ8ynI38GO6H01Q

https://wylsa.com

 

 

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Beer will be a scarce drink by 2099

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It is believed that climate change can deprive humanity of many foods. Scientists already have concerns that in the future the Earth will become unsuitable for the growth of some plants, and chocolate, wine and even Tabasco sauce will become inaccessible to humans. New research published in the journal Nature Plants Monday, suggests that by 2099, humanity may lose even the oldest beverage – beer.

 

The results of the study showed that due to the extremely hot conditions expected by 2099, barley yields will decrease from 3 to 17% worldwide. Depending on the region, the price of beer can rise from 52 to 300%. It turns out that today’s beer worth $ 4 in the future will cost from 6 to 24 dollars.

The work was based on the climate data for 1981-2010 and four climate models. Calculations showed that the greatest damage to the barley harvest will be inflicted in Russia, Ireland and Brazil – in these countries there is the most dramatic warming. However, the drink can become luxury, because Japan and Belgium can produce more beer.

According to scientists, in most regions, barley yields will remain at a satisfactory level. However, scientists did not pay attention to other factors that could ruin the crop. These include pests and natural disasters like floods.

The researchers recalled that due to the lack of beer, no one would die. Moreover, a smaller amount of its use can positively affect the health of the population.

This is not the only scientific research on the topic of beer. For example, in 2013, brewers cloned beer found on an 1840 vessel. In 2018, Australian brewers created beer with a reduced amount of gases specifically for astronauts.

 

 

Link : https://hi-news.ru/research-development/uchenye-k-2099-godu-pivo-stanet-deficitnym-napitkom.html

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Flying cars are on the way!

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Airbus and Audi partner for urban mobility services


Stock up on strong nerves as well as fat wallets to make use of the world’s first airborne automobiles on an industrial scale.


The idea of Urban Air Mobility (UAM) so far remains pie in the sky for someone, but it’s not for aviation giant Airbus, German car manufacturer Audi, and Italdesign design house. The trio collaborated to develop real, near-term urban mobility solutions for avoiding rush hour, unveiling a scale-model prototype of a flying drone-car called the “Pop.Up Next”. Why are we still obsessing, if there’s a chance just to fly over traffic jam that we are sick of?

“This important partnership with Audi addresses both current and future challenges for urban mobility. As a first concrete milestone in the cooperation we are developing, we will be offering multi-modal transportation solutions to the world’s most congested cities,” said Airbus CEO Tom Enders. “The world is rapidly urbanizing, and ground infrastructure alone cannot meet the demands of tomorrow. Increased congestion is pushing the cities’ transport systems to the limits, costing travellers and municipalities valuable time and money. Adding the sky as a third dimension to the urban transport networks is going to revolutionise the way we live – and Airbus is ready to shape and build that future of flight.”

airbus car drone conceptWell, the car-drone combo is made up of three separate modules, which allow customers to have a seamless and ultra-convenient travel experience. The key component is a capsule for passengers that is 2.5 meters long and 1.4 meters high. Its modular design means that it can easily unhook from its chassis with wheels and get airlifted by an accompanying drone, which is autonomous and powered by 4 rotors. The so-called cubicle can attach to a battery-powered chassis to become a two-seater electric car. Without the cubicle, the chassis can drive only 100 kilometers on a single charge, so we are faced with not a long-distance vehicle concept, unfortunately.

No less interesting is the fact that passengers can summon the drone using a phone app that can also suggest the best transport solutions as well as ride-sharing demand and relative cost. The capsule can even be paired with other futuristic transport systems, like the Hyperloop.

Despite the fact that the model’s test flight went off without a fault, Airbus executive Jean Brice Dumont is prudently optimistic about when the Pop.Up system will actually become a reality.

“I think it will take more than a decade until a real significant, massive deployment of an air taxi system” is ready, he said, and “for this we need to tick a list of boxes. The vehicle is one, safety is the overarching one, infrastructure is one, acceptability is another one.”

 

However, the serious competitor Uber turned out to be even more ambitious. Last year, the transportation company revealed an artist’s impression of a sleek machine with the goal to start using for demonstration flights of the year 2020 and by 2023 for actual use. Uber’s battery-powered aircraft looks like a blend of a small plane and a helicopter with fixed wings and rotors.

So, what to expect from state-of-the-art technology?

You must agree, that anxiety comes in this case by itself. The barrier standing between you and a future of commuting through the skies is bravery. The fact that you may feel uneasy in a flying car, that was once just a stupid dream from your childhood is hardly a shocker. That’s not to say that they’re unsafe, anyway, the parachute, of course, should help. You’re still going to have to entrust your life to a vehicle. And yet, the attractiveness of freedom and faster journeys might be sufficient for many people to roll the dice.

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