Smart Transportation Solutions

Smart Transportation Solutions

HOW SMART TRANSPORTATION INITIATIVES CAN TRANSFORM CITIES?

As more people move into cities, civic authorities are putting in place smart transportation initiatives. These initiatives aim to reduce infrastructure costs, alleviate traffic bottlenecks, optimize routes, and foster road safety. What drives these initiatives is the data from connected vehicles. Information from vehicles helps smart cities to create holistic plans that encompass an entire city’s ecosystem.

The Internet of Things (IoT) is transforming the transportation industry. As the market for IoT is estimated to reach $1.7 trillion in 2020, smart transportation systems are creating opportunities across a wide range of industries and market segments. Opportunities abound in automating roadways, railways, and airways; transforming passenger experiences; and reshaping the way cargo and merchandise are tracked and delivered. Riding the IoT wave is a prime component in smart transportation systems: big data analytics.

Massive volumes of data are generated by smart technologies deployed within connected vehicles. According to a study by Hitachi, a single connected car will produce more than 25 GB of data per hour of use. Putting this data into perspective enables businesses and civic authorities to see patterns they can use to develop a range of innovative services towards building a connected infrastructure.

CONNECTED VEHICLES ARE THE NEW “EYES”

As IoT can create connections between the smart vehicle and the transportation infrastructure, it offers several benefits, including a coordinated system designed to get everyone safely to their destination on time. Sensors installed on the vehicles could send a signal that alerts nearby vehicles about any problem, enabling them to slow down or take an alternate route. In-vehicle sensors and systems create valuable information flows:

Smart Parking

03(1)IoT-enabled parking garages can monitor capacity. They can report on the location and number of available parking spaces in a facility to the drivers who enter.

Predictive Maintenance

05In-vehicle sensors can analyze engine loads, driver behavior, road condition, etc. This can then compile a vehicle history that can be used to optimize scheduled maintenance.

Optimized Routing

01(1)Analysis of traffic conditions, fuel consumption and vehicle idle time between routes can determine the most efficient route for vehicles to follow.

Video Surveillance

02(1)By linking dashboard cameras and other video sources with cloud storage, organizations can stream video for immediate review.

Rider Services

04(2)Bus and train services can provide real-time route data to customers’ smartphones, showing where the next bus is and when it is due.

HOW CONNECTED INFRASTRUCTURE CAN TRANSFORM URBAN TRAVEL
As smart cities evolve, different systems in the city will be able to communicate with each other. Connected cars help cities to monitor their transport infrastructure. This in turn can enable the development of allied services that are adaptive, and the introduction of predictive tools that allow the best transport service to be offered, based on forecast and real-time environmental, traffic, and other related data. For instance, data from connected sensors can give many insights such as how citizens use transport, what planning is required, and what information can be shared with citizens to enhance their travelling experience. By combining multiple sources of data, such as weather and traffic information, complex analysis of travel patterns can be undertaken.

When vehicles, passengers and infrastructure can communicate with each other, it becomes possible for the city to adapt and integrate different systems, enabling new services to be deployed. Traffic lights can automatically turn green for emergency vehicles, buses can ply routes where more people are waiting, vehicles can pay tolls for distance driven, and pedestrians can have priority over vehicular traffic in some areas.

To make the most of IoT in transport services, the onus is on the civic authorities and service operators. Understanding how best to utilize the data and connectivity options available to them will allow civic authorities to redefine the urban infrastructure landscape to greater effect, and for common good.

 

 

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9 STEPS FOR A SMART CITY

9 STEPS FOR A SMART CITY

IoT in urban environments brings in a number of benefits. A well-planned IoT implementation helps in managing and optimising traditional public services; increases transparency and promotes better civic response to citizens; stimulates the active participation of citizens in public affairs; and fosters the creation of new services—all of these without drying up the city council’s treasury.

Therefore, local and regional administrations keen on making their city smart keenly follow the developments taking place in the world of IoT. However, any successful implementation requires more than just rolling out a slew of technologies; it involves the public, private and civic bodies to participate in devising a common action plan for their city.

Below is a list of recommendations for implementing, optimising, and evaluating smart city initiatives for all stakeholders:

091.Vision: There term “Smart City” refers to computerisation in the public sphere, i.e IT convergence, digitalisation, connectivity, etc. A smart city is capable of reinventing itself with new standards for the welfare and wellbeing of its population. In IoT parlance, a Smart Cities project refers to the interconnection of key industry and service sectors, such as Smart Governance, Smart Mobility, Smart Utilities, Smart Buildings, and Smart Environment. Therefore, the vision for a Smart City should consider the prevailing social-economic conditions and civic readiness to arrive at the objectives for the Smart City model.

082.Technology Adoption: Creating a scalable, manageable and secured broadband and IoT infrastructure is the foundation for all communications requirements of any smart city. Apart from the above prerequisite, a Smart City project also requires allied technologies as enablers. To better appreciate the level of maturity of enabling technologies and their adoption, it is important to have a synoptic view of all services in terms of technical, infrastructural and administrative constraints.

073. Open Data Policy: Smart cities use public data and information from government and other sources to help solve civic problems and create new business opportunities. Defining the rights and privileges associated with collected data, data governance, and data usage assists in fostering transparency and providing value-added services.

064. Public-Private Initiatives: Categorising the “need to have” and “nice to have” applications (which will be delivered by public-private partnership) sets the parameters for incorporating smart requirements into publicly funded infrastructure programs and in areas such as mobility, healthcare, security, lighting, environment, energy, construction, and communications.

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5. Cross-Domain Initiatives: Establishing the framework for a holistic approach across sectors and applications require expertise and standards that span many different sectors—from smart transport to smart buildings. This holistic and layered framework addresses the multiple needs of a smart city, leverages urban data to boost economic competitiveness, and builds effective solutions to many challenges.

046. Stimulate Ecosystems: Cultivating a collaborative culture with private partners plays a key role in developing the smart city eco system. Project developers, utilities companies, service providers, technology vendors, system integrators, and application developers collaborate through initiatives like city labs, developer contests, and application playgrounds to build the smart city. It would be beneficial to create a common network infrastructure and a secure IoT architecture that serves the needs of partners and the city council.

037. Milestones: Defining a framework with quantitative and qualitative indicators is important, and it must be customised for the city’s specific objectives. The evaluation should not only cover technical aspects, but also consider parameters like digital economic growth, sectoral sensitivity, accessibility of open data, digital service adoption, and more.

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8Education: A smart city project should reflect the inclusive, participatory, and social nature of its civic initiatives. Connecting with citizens and keeping them informed about progress through communications and social media is important for the success of any initiative. Through end-user education, field trials, surveys and open house sessions, the administration should reach out to the public.

019. Community Connect: It is important to make innovative companies collaborate with local communities on concepts, end-to-end prototypes, business models, and market trials. Although technologies such as broadband Internet and IoT are important building blocks of the government’s vision, the citizens’ acceptance and engagement will eventually determine success or failure of any smart city initiative.

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THE RISE OF COGNITIVE BANKING

THE RISE OF COGNITIVE BANKING

Blockchain, Artificial intelligence (AI) and cognitive technologies are creating new opportunities for the finance industry. In an industry where insight and information is crucial, the focus is now on investing in technology and resources that aid in complex problem-solving, critical thinking and creativity to meet customer expectations in a timely manner and provide tailored products and services. Banks are embracing the latest technologies—ranging from blockchain, cloud computing, cognitive computing, and the Internet of Things, to machine learning and more—to understand the needs of customers and service them.

For the banking sector, investing in cognitive technology is a given and a necessity to retain their competitiveness. Cognitive technology helps banks to make sense of data for providing a range of services that include customer experience and fulfilment, cyber security, risk management, and compliance. Therefore, the financial services business is now transforming into a cognitive business.

How do Cognitive Systems work ?

In financial service companies, cognitive systems use the unstructured data present in industry reports, investment advisories, financial news, and other party sources to offer customised solutions based on individual needs and requirements of customers. In other words, financial service companies can target individuals to deliver the right product, thereby increasing the chances of sales conversion. Cognitive systems apply predictive analysis to determine an individual’s characteristic requirements from social media, messages, and other available content. Once the persona of an individual is shaped, data analysis helps to determine the customer type, and assists the advisor in making decisions.

Impact on Processes

Previously, only humans could perform certain tasks with some degree of autonomy; now, cognitive technologies are able to do that and more. Over the years, cognitive technologies have matured to perform the following tasks –

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  • Analysing Numbers: Cognitive technologies help analysing numbers in structured formats. Simple algorithmic methods help in creating variables and models that best fit to a data set. Complex cognitive methods can learn from labeled data to determine strategies that may come in handy during complex business situations; for instance, fraud detection and personalised marketing.

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  • Analysing Images & Words: This key aspect of cognition is no longer a realm of human intervention. A wide variety of tools analyse words and images, and do more: words are read, counted, classified, interpreted, and predicted. This has been possible through technologies such as machine learning, natural language processing, neural networks, deep learning, and so forth.

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  • Performing Digital tasks: Automating administrative tasks and decisions often is best handled by cognitive technologies. As there are thousands of such tasks to perform in the financial sector, cognitive tools perform the required tasks to move a ‘case’ through a logical series of workflow steps. Banks and insurance companies use it for back-office customer service tasks such as replacing a lost ATM card, processing claims, and handling payments etc.

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  • Performing Physical tasks: Robots come with cognitive abilities for more intelligence and greater ability to make decisions. When loaded with deep learning software, robots can analyse processes, perform tasks within processes, and make learning predictions of what is most likely to satisfy a customer.

Customer demand is fundamentally changing traditional business models with technology-driven peer-to-peer lending services, online banking, and DIY portfolio management companies. Competition is fierce to deliver timely and tailored products to customers, and companies are embracing different financial technologies as new means to engage with customers.

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IoT – Powering the Transformation of Business

IoT – Powering the Transformation of Business

While most smart buildings are managed by an integrated software application, usually known as the Building Management System (BMS), the Internet of Things (IoT) offers stakeholders the durable insight and control required for further value creation, customisation, and cost control. IoT has redefined the relationship between physical and digital environments. This results in buildings that can communicate, identify risks, and address inefficiencies—all automatically performed to our desired standards.

What is a ‘Smart’ building?

Today, smart building solutions connect devices and sensors to the cloud, use analytics and artificial intelligence for addressing risks or inefficiencies, and communicate with users. IoT performs all of these with a network of connections that automatically senses and responds to changes in physical environments—from lighting to biometrics. With insight into operations, resource management, space utilisation and productivity, stakeholders can take proactive actions, optimise usage, and rationalise processes.

Benefits of ‘Smart’ Buildings

  • Improved Use of Resources – IoT solutions provide you with valuable insights and patterns of resource usage. This helps businesses to become proactive and tackle unplanned downtime. Prioritisation of tasks is easier with these solutions.
  • Reduced Consumption of Energy – Energy consumption can be checked and optimised to requirement. With real-time visibility into usage of resources, these solutions help in controlling consumption and optimising usage. Through the use of automation and Artificial Intelligence, we can ensure that our devices operate only when necessary, thereby reducing wastage.
  • Efficient Utilisation of Space – IoT solutions leverage sensors and devices to improve space usage, through the use of heat maps and other sensors. Smart building solutions are capable of using intelligence and automation capabilities to learn behaviours and preferences. This greatly helps businesses to provide a supportive environment that caters to the needs of employees and other personnel present.
  • Effective Personalisation of Environments – As IoT connects people, devices and locations, smart buildings have more flexibility in determining the nature and quantum of value served to users. A major aspect of value addition includes personalised assistance based on user preferences and activities, going way beyond proximity-based automation that most BMS’ offer.

With IoT connectivity, users have the ability to interact with a device or sensor from a remote location. IoT presents numerous opportunities and allows users the flexibility to experiment and iterate at a smaller level. Once a solution is tested, it can be scaled up and even globally distributed.

Marching towards Smart Cities

Kerala’s initiative to earmark its commercial capital, Kochi, as a hub for IoT has set in motion a vibrant ecosystem for early adoption of the technology in sectors such as governance, infrastructure, transport, welfare and civic services, etc. Multiple sectors collaborate and work in tandem for sustainable outcomes. Based on the sectors involved, IoT undertakes the analysis of both contextual and real-time information, and streamlines operational technology systems.

Figure 1: Innovative services in IoT will drive the development of allied ecosystems within a city. (Source: https://iotweek.blob.core.windows.net)

This multi-sector adoption of IoT enables smart cities to interact and engage with citizens, providing value and personalised assistance. For instance, sensors in bus bays can help in identifying people with special needs, alert the bus driver, and communicate to the passenger about the approximate time of the vehicle’s arrival. Apart from personalised attention and value creation, IoT can help reduce the cost of energy, resources, and maintenance by up to 30 percent. In about a year’s time, large commercial sones, industrial parks, and gated communities will turn to IoT services for meeting all their requirements.

For businesses, IoT presents both disruptive and transformational potential. They have no choice about whether to embrace IoT or not. The coming days will witness increased Smart Digitalisation across sectors—healthcare, transportation, agriculture, etc. as IoT adoption is the only way forward for society.

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5 BENEFITS OF TELECOMMUTING

 

5 BENEFITS OF TELECOMMUTING

Smartphones and connectivity have not only made mobile workspaces possible but also ensured increased levels of productivity even outside office. Mobile working is no longer a trend practiced by the cash-strapped startups or global conglomerates: it is now a necessity and an asset in enterprises of all sizes across industries. By adopting mobile strategies, businesses are able to extend their operations, reach to potential new clients, improve response rates, and gather real-time insight and reports.

Thanks to its rapid strides in infrastructure development and connectivity, Kerala is looking forward to tapping these businesses to invest in the state. By stressing on its human capital, infrastructure and locational advantages, Kerala highlights its potential for offering a more harmonised work environment. With changing work patterns and business requirements, companies have a strong desire for providing a real quality of life in office environment, especially because the thin red line between professional and personal lives continues to slim. Let’s take a look at how telecommuting and mobility creates opportunities for business –

1.Improvement in Communication & Collaboration

As telecommuting and hot desk programs are becoming the norm, many companies are offering employees more flexibility at work. This has not blunted any communication ability; instead, it has spurred global collaboration with associates, contacts and affiliates. In any given company today, the frequency of online conference calls is far higher than that of physical meetings at the workplace. Various online conferencing tools have only added to the ease and lure of collaborating from remote locations. Advancements in technology have led to a rethinking of office environments and behaviours for teamwork, including the well-being of employees.

2.Flexibility in Working Environment

By 2020, a large chuck of workforce across industries will be mobile, and this will have a positive impact on productivity. This impact will be in part due to the transparency and flexibility of telecommuting. Mobile devices allow for interaction between different stakeholders, storing and sharing information in real-time. Such levels of flexibility help in creating a more engaged workplace.

3.Reduction in Communication Overheads

The benefits of mobility in the workplace go beyond increased productivity and enhanced communication to create a reduction in overhead costs, as reports state that mobility helps companies save up to 25% in voice and data costs. With the help of one mobile device, staff can access company data, send emails, reserve meeting spaces and do a lot more than our older, bulky PCs, desk phones, and hardware could.

4.IoT-enabled Personalisation in Environment

With IoT, companies are able to meet the requirements of both the customers and workforce with a high-level of personalisation. Ignoring this trend will cost organisations not only in productivity but also in the loss of the industry’s best and brightest talents. In fact, it is becoming more commonplace for staff to consider mobile policies, such as Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) policies, when choosing which company to work for.

5.Increased in Revenue Potential

Mobility fosters interactions among all stakeholders, thus giving the required impetus for employee empowerment and customer engagement. It also helps in resolving customer issues in near real-time, helping organisations to reach higher levels of success and growth.

For ensuring the success of their mobility strategies, organisations must consider including mobile devices, applications, cloud-enabled services, and software in their workflow. Mobility will help in addressing operational issues, managing organisational challenges, automating routine processes, and ensuring real-time reporting.

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Self-Driving Cars, Heading Our Way

Self-Driving Cars, Heading Our Way

What are self-driving vehicles?

Self-driving cars are robotic vehicles capable of navigating to a destination without human assistance. Although most of these cars do well under controlled environment, they do require a human in the driver’s seat to take control at any time. These vehicles use a variety of advanced control systems to identify the environment and interpret information.

How do self-driving cars work?

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The driver sets a destination on the car’s system, which then calculates the best possible routes and seeks your sign-off.

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High-precision sensors do a 60-meter range scan of the current environment and relay the information to the car. This creates a dynamic 3D map.

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Sensors on the wheels detect the car’s position and other objects relative to the 3D map. Radar systems on the anterior and posterior sides continuously calculate distances of vehicles, pedestrians, etc.

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The car’s system controls the speed and navigation based on dynamic inputs from the sensors and radars.

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Fully automatic braking system is integrated within the car’s intelligence unit.

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A manual override function helps the driver to take control of the vehicle when circumstances demand.

Benefits of Self-Driving Cars

Self-driving vehicles are defining the future of mobility in many developed societies. The advantages offered by this vehicle technology are so critical that they are influencing the future of transport.

  • These vehicles can be programmed to follow traffic rules and help in reducing accidents.
  • Programmable driving makes traffic conditions are more predictable; in other words, you can reach your destination at the scheduled time due to smoother traffic and less congestion.
  • This technology helps in creating a cleaner, safer and more efficient system of transportation.

Although self-driven cars have long been shown in sci-fi movies, major developments have taken place in this technology that some nations have passed legislation to allow such vehicles to operate legally on public roads. This technology, now embraced by all major corporations, has the backing of governments as well, a factor that will make self-driving cars more commonplace.

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Smart Homes For Smarter Living

Smart Homes For Smarter Living

It is not uncommon these days to find ‘fully connected’ homes. From Smart TVs to IoT-enabled refrigerators that automatically communicate with you or the grocery store, the range of gadgets that simplify life is continuously growing. For instance, a large number of retailers are embracing the use of IoT to bring consumers and brands together. Homeowners have learnt that a simple click is all they need to switch off the TV, open the garage door, start the car, order a pizza and do a lot more; remote-control living at its best! However, the future of smart-home technology is in the process of a silent revolution where the focus is no longer on newer gadgets or appliances, but on building homes fitted with integrated smart products instead.

 Integrated Smart Homes

The world is abuzz about personal assistant devices connecting homes to a virtual assistant. Within the next year or so, residents can wirelessly control all home devices that are connected to a central bridge. Users can already monitor home security, climate, and lights, and do a lot more. The potential of this revolutionary technology continues to grow as the world turns towards an automated future.

 Benefits of Smart Homes

1. Convenience

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The primary incentive behind investing in Smart Homes is the added convenience offered by it. Equipped with a simply remote control, users gain access to a wide variety of systems, including temperature control, communication devices, or multimedia devices, located throughout the home. With the help of integrated hard drives, homeowners can enjoy full connectivity with the rest of the home, streamlining daily tasks and making things easier.

2. Security

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Smart Homes provide users with a sophisticated security systems, fully equipped with cameras, motion sensors, and the additional feature of notifying local authorities or private security companies of threats. Smart Homes make use of biometrics or electronic key cards instead of conventional locks, making it more difficult for break-ins to occur.

3. Accessibility

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For elderly or disabled users, Smart Homes provide increased accessibility by using Voice-command technology. These Voice-command Systems are capable of controlling lighting, locking and unlocking doors, and using other devices. Home automation provides individuals with the ability to set a schedule for routine chores like watering the lawn, saving them the effort of having to perform these laborious tasks on a daily basis.

4. Efficiency

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 Smart Homes are capable of improving energy-efficiency through careful, measured usage of appliances. Motion sensors help conserve energy by shutting off the lights in vacated rooms, while temperature regulation can adjust according to outdoor temperatures and user preferences. These automated tasks, combined with advanced, energy-efficient appliances of today, help preserve the environment by reducing the amount of electricity, water and natural gas used.

5. Resale

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 At the point of resale, Smart Homes are considerably more valuable as they are already fitted with the latest in modern technology. Users can share their personal experience with these Smart Home technologies, and can explain them to potential buyers. If interested in future resale of a property, Home Automation should be considered as a worthwhile investment into an already valuable asset.

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3D Printing – A New Dimension

3D Printing – A New Dimension

3D Printing is an additive manufacturing process that uses a digital design to create a physical product. The major 3D Printing technologies, and materials available, are based on the principle of creating a solid three-dimensional physical object by adding layers of material, one layer at a time.

How does 3D Printing work?

As with any form of artistic creation, we begin with a blueprint that guides us in creating the desired end product. Similarly, any 3D Print begins as a digital design, divided into countless horizontal layers before being sent to the 3D Printer, which begins to carefully print our product – layer by lay- er!

Based on the technology available, the printing process uses a variety of materials, ranging from plastics to rubber, sandstone, metals and alloys – with more and more options appearing on the market every year!

What caused today’s 3D Printing hype?

In 2009, expiry of the patent for fused deposition modelling (FDM), possibly the most common 3D Printing technology, resulted in 3D Printing moving beyond the industrial manufacturing space. As more manufacturers turned towards this technology, the price of having your own 3D Printer plummeted. Technology that once cost over hundreds of thousands of dollars was now available for less than $2000, marking the rise of the 3D Printing era.

As expected, the world has seen a steady rise in 3D Printer sales, and has been growing ever since. We currently have over 3,00,000 consumer 3D Printers in the world, and this figure shows no sign of slowing down as we discover more technological innovations in the years to come.

The Pros and Cons of 3D Printing

The rapidly evolving technology of 3D Printing comes with a vast collection of benefits, but also presents its own unique set of challenges in manufacturing.

Pros of 3D Printing

• Ability to create complex designs
• Customisation of each and every detail
• Lower Fixed Costs, with no need for tools & hardware • Rapid Response in Prototyping
• Less Wastage from Production

Cons of 3D Printing

• Higher costs for large production facilities
• Less choice in Materials, Colours, Finish etc. • Limited Endurance & Strength
• Less Precision & Control during process

The Potential Usage of 3D Printing?

The benefits of 3D Printing extend past the boundaries of industry or profession, providing value to each and every one of us, in some way or another. Here are a few of its potential uses –

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Medical Manufacturing

Prosthetic Manufacturers

Doctors

Dentists

Construction

Improved Infrastructure in Developing Areas

Automobile Manufacturing

Motor Vehicle Manufacturers

Aerospace Manufacturers

Art & Design

Engineers

Architects

Product Designers

Interior Decorators

Consumer Goods

Clothing Manufacturers

Home Utensil Manufacturers

Comfort & Leisure Goods

Education

Learning Tool for Infants,

Students, Professionals

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Virtual Reality

Virtual Reality

Turning Dreams Into Reality – Experiencing Virtual Reality

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What is Virtual Reality?

Technology is constantly evolving to make the user experience as seamless and effortless as possible. From the introduction of personal computers to the smartphone revolution, we’ve seen how technology has consistently grown more capable and provides accessibility to people all around the world. We’re steadily gaining access to forms of technology that previously only seemed possible in our favourite science-fiction movies; introducing the impressive, immersive world of Virtual Reality.

How does it work?

The concept of Virtual Reality is based on a digital, computer-generated environment that can be designed according to the creator’s wish.

For example, a computer-generated ‘desert island’ will provide the VR user with an visual representation of the scene, allowing the user to realistically feel as if they are stranded on a deserted island.

VR utilises a headset that fits around the user’s head, over their eyes, and separates the visual senses from the environment they are present in. Based on the media provided to the headset’s screen, the user is provided with an extremely convincing immersive experience, creating a world of potential to harness! VR allows users to visit Mount Everest, take a journey through Outer Space and immerse themselves in an engaging video game – all from the comfort of their living room.

How can I use it?

The technology behind VR has been the focus of many software developers around the world. While the usual VR setup will require the support of sophisticated hardware, there are more and more ways for an individual consumer to get a taste of the VR experience!

Google Cardboard

The driving force behind technological evolution is to assist the common man, and no company has embodied this spirit better than Google. By repurposing a simple piece of cardboard and a pair of cheap, embedded lenses, individuals can now experience VR through the help of Google Cardboard. The headset allows users to place their smartphones in such a way that the screen is held up to the user’s face, providing a makeshift VR experience. While it may not be completely immersive, Google Cardboard serves as an excellent first step towards bringing this technology to the masses in an affordable way.

Virtual Reality Headsets

There are more sophisticated devices in the market that provide both auditory and visual senses with an immersive experience. Devices such as the Oculus Rift, the HTC Vive, and Sony’s Playstation VR will cost you upwards of Rs.25,000/- and will need to connect with your PC or Gaming Console in order to be used. These headsets provide a better understanding of the technological capabilities of VR, as they allow a completely immersive experience, including the use

of arms and legs to interact with the environment. While they are significantly more expensive, these devices stand as the most accurate, effective uses of immersive Virtual Reality technology.

Impact of VR

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The video game industry may have been the first enthusiastic propagators of Virtual Reality, but it is by no means a technology restricted to children’s entertainment. Just as technology is bridging the gaps in various industries, like with 3-D Printing, Digital Currencies, Data Storage etc., it is creating an entirely new dimension in experiential marketing, advertising and information dissemination. The possibilities of this brand new medium are near endless. Here are a few primary examples of its implementation –

Be it blockbuster films from around the world, or live musical / theatrical performances. VR offers a way to bring these experiences to your living room. Special cameras are being developed to capture a 360′ view of these experiences, and to subsequently stream them to users around the world. With the added aspect of being interactive, the film industry may completely evolve with VR.


Possibly the most common example of VR implementation, video games allow developers to test the boundaries of immersive, entertainment experiences. More than the obvious enhancement in experience. VR lowers the barriers to entry for individuals less informed of video games. With the freedom of exploration and discovery. VR allows players to easily interact with these simulated environments and, somewhat literally, enjoy an out-of-this-world experience.


There is no end to the potential of VR in fields of Science. From fields of Medicine to Astronomy, the educational and experiential capabilities of VR is astounding. This technology allows individuals to gain a thorough understanding of both; the theoretical and the practical implementation of certain fields, through an immersive experience. Imagine being able to visit ancient Archeological sites around the world, or perform complicated surgical procedures, from the comfort of your classroom!


VR removes all physical limitations involved in an experience, which allows prospective buyers to gain the most informed opinion on any given purchase. From the Real Estate market allowing prospective home-owners to physically place themselves in potential flats, to the average Online Consumer being able to virtually ‘try on’ an infinite number of products before purchasing, VR is the solution.


Virtual Tourism is another aspect of VR that has remarkable potential for success, as it allows individuals to be transported to the location of their choice! Whether its a romantic evening in Paris, or an exhilarating trek up the Himalayas, users will be able to have a taste of what these experiences offer. Aside from the obvious experiential marketing potential of such a tool, VR also allows users to accurately share memories and experiences with their loved ones, offering a world of convenience to people unable to travel. We’re not even too far from the day where we’ll be able to record a 3602 live feed of our own memories, to be later enjoyed with full control.


VR allows artists to step into their canvas and interact with their creations. The level of control that designers will have increases, as they can now examine their designs with added precision and accuracy. Its tools of collaboration also allow artists to share their work effectively, and create an efficient method of sharing 3-D designs and concepts.


VR provides us with the most effective tool to understand human psychology, and provide an individual with the environment needed to stay calm and reflect on their thoughts. As the world grows more conscious of mental illnesses and the psychological effects of experiences, it comes as no surprise that VR is being utilised to best approach these issues. VR allows an individual to simulate a place of serenity, or to safely explore otherwise uncomfortable, unapproachable topics. This level of control will allow medical professionals to not only effectively diagnose problems, but also tailor-make the ideal solutions for each patient.


The future of technology is promising, and there are an infinite number of ways in which technology will evolve in the years to come. As is the case with any technological revolution, we must bear in mind the potential benefits and threats of an over-reliance on technology. Most importantly, we have the privilege of being here to witness this great step towards the future, and must fully understand how to be a part of it.

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An Introduction To Bitcoin

An Introduction To Bitcoin

What is Bitcoin?

Bitcoin is the newest form of digital currency, or ‘cryptocurrency’, capable of operating without having to rely on a bank account, or any government body, to process the transaction. In under fifteen minutes, a Bitcoin transaction can be completed between buyers and sellers across the world. These transactions incur minimal processing fees, allowing both parties to have complete, unrestricted control over their funds.

How does it work?

Bitcoin, or ‘BTC’ transactions are facilitated through a Digital Wallet, that provides users with a unique address. These digital currencies can be transferred from one wallet to another, in almost no time! Here are the steps to begin your Bitcoin experience –

• Download an official Digital Wallet, and obtain your Bitcoin address.

• Earn or procure Bitcoins through a number of exchange services, at the current exchange rates.

• Transfer Bitcoin to a merchant or friend by adding their provided BTC address.

Bitcoin

What are the benefits of using Bitcoin?

  • Payment Independence – Bitcoin allows users to transfer money to and from any part of the world, with no worries about any Political, Socio-Economic or other restrictions usually faced when transferring money. As there is no intervening central authority, it is completely possible for Bitcoin users to experience full independence in their financial transactions.
  • Counterfeit-proof – Bitcoins are entirely digital, with no reliance on a physical form for transactions and trading. This ensures that they are free from the risk of counterfeiting, as digital currencies are protected by sophisticated systems that prevent tampering or duplicating the currency in any way.
  • Security & Control – There is safety in using Bitcoin as it allows users complete control over their transactions. Users are free from the threat of any taxes or extra fees being levied on their transactions, without adequate notice. A Merchant can only add these additional charges once Customer Approval is received for the same.
  • Anonymity & Identity Theft – There is no personal information or data that is attached to these digital currency transactions, which helps protect users against identity theft or forgery. Through sophisticated encryptions and back-ups, it is possible to completely protect Bitcoin and ensure the safety of your transactions.
  • Transparency – Every finalised Bitcoin transaction is visible to everyone, with only the user details being hidden. Every user’s public address can be monitored, allowing full transparency in transactions and the ability to verify the Bitcoin blockchain.
  • Low Processing Fees – Bitcoin transactions incur little to no processing fees whatsoever. While users have the option of including charges to encourage a quicker processing period, there is no obligation for parties to do so. The purpose of this fee is to establish which high priority transactions that require network attention and faster processing times. There are also Digital Currency Exchanges that help merchants process their transactions by converting Bitcoin to a ‘flat currency’, and these services usually incur lower fees than the average credit card transaction.
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