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where tech meets lifestyle
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DecoDing John Mcafee
WAR OF THE
Behind the Scenes
Lowdown on picking the right
BiPASHA BASu goes a step
Right from the show floors of VEGAS
A-Z OF GAMING
Ferrari F12 Berlinetta-
How to's: •Use Vine App •Boost your Wi-Fi Signal •Take Long Exposure Shots •Use Facebook Social Graph •Save your Tweets on Evernote •Keep Phishers out of Your Inbox •Use your smartphone while driving
What’s Setting the Pulses racing
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for the first time ever in India
Let Technology Do The Walking
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GADGET WARS 2.0.13
By Chaitanya Tapase
UNDERSTANDING THE WAR
We’ve all seen how one product from a category is pitted against another, and then a winner is decided based on who performs better or has better functionality. But, what if we compared apples to oranges and let you choose which one really interests you more? Confused? Don’t be! We all know what we want from a gadget. If it’s a smartphone (for example), we know we want it to have a fluid (preferably HD display) touchscreen UI. If it’s a laptop, we want it to be lightweight and have excellent battery life while delivering superb multitasking capabilities. If it’s a full frame DSLR, we want it to have excellent image quality in every light situation, plenty of features, add-ons and superb handling. But, if you had some x amount of money to spend and an open choice to spend on ANY gadget that you wish, would you go for the smartphone directly? Or buy that camera you had always wanted? What really is better to buy when you really need to upgrade all your gadgets but have limited resources? The questions are tough and they will vary for every user out there. What we can do here is, though, provide you with an interesting way of looking at gadgets from different categories pitted against each other. It’s a bumpy ride, so let’s strap in and enjoy it!
WHO TAKES ON WHOM? Sony PS Vita
Samsung Galaxy Note II
Macbook Pro Retina
Transcend StoreJet 35T3
Canon EOS 5D Mark III
Bose 3•2•1 GS Series III DVD Home Entertainment System
Google Nexus 7
Epson Moverio BT-100
Dell XPS 12 Hybrid
War of the GadGets
As the decade enters its teenage years, gadgets evolve to serve functionality that was considered science fiction at the end of the last millennium. We’ve seen one phone pit against another and a tablet against another. But pitting one category against another, we’ve created a feature article like no other and we’re hoping you guys enjoy reading as much as we enjoyed writing it.
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the New audi Q5
Audi have revamped their Q5 and made it better to be positioned in the segment of mid to upper end SUV’s in India. We took an exclusive drive and tested out the highs and lows of the newest sensation by Audi and here’s where you can read all about it!
TABLET BUYING GUIDE
Tablets have been a product category only a few months, but they’ve already created enough buzz and sales to encourage everyone to crave it. We have taken a look at what you should look for when buying a tablet and what points need to be kept in mind. Why would you buy a tablet? The tablet is a device that evokes extreme emotions, it seems. Some have chucked the laptop into the naughty corner and adopted the tablet completely. Others are still using both devices, doing some tasks on one and the rest on the other- comfort being the critical keyword. There is a third category of people however, who still haven’t really found the purpose of the tablet in their lives, between the smartphone and the laptop. However, it does work well as a device that does a bit of this and a bit of that- web browsing, multimedia, office work and even gaming. To say that it can replace the laptop solely depends on who is using it, how comfortable he/she is with an all touchscreen environment to work on. To say that the tablet will replace the smartphone is a bit of a raff. Agreed, most tablets have a SIM card slot, but that is only for data usage on the move. Very few tablets offer voice-calling capability. 68 I EXHIBIT I FEBRUARY 2013
EARPHONES AND HEADPHONES Audiophiles have been in a fix so as to why an earphone or headphone does not live up to their expectations even though the specs were top notch. It’s not just the specs that matter most times, audio products like these need to be fine tuned a lot more to be really good. An in-depth look at what to expect and how to go about making decisions.
90 Ces 2013
Like every year, we were invited to Las Vegas to look at CES in all its glory and experience the newest in the tech world. Here’s a look at our exclusive trip, plus an exclusive interview with Gary Shapirov, CEO of CEA.
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a-Z of Gaming in 2013
There’s a lot to expect from games in the coming year, and we’ve taken a look at all the expected big releases in 2013 of the gaming industry.
The High Dynamic Range in cameras may just be another feature, but it takes a lot of skill and expertise to really get the best out of it. We’ve taken a look at how to master this art, without too much about the art of photography itself.
106 de-Coding John Mcafee
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The founder of McAfee security solutions has found himself in such a soup that he has to choose between a cliff and a well. But, how did he get to where he is now - and how much of the controversy is really true? An in-depth look at John McAfee’s life in the tech industry.
Motorbikes for every Personality
They say there is a biker for every type of bike, but he also needs to match it with a cool gear to pull off the look that compliments the ride. Why don’t we let you advise you on what will go with what kind of a bike, so that you can fearlessly ride with the waves.
ferrari f12 Berlinetta
The Italians have not been quiet all these months, instead they’ve been planning and executing the launch of one of their most finely crafted creations we’ve seen in a long time. Turn over and find out more about this beautiful Ferrari F12 Berlinetta.
FROM THE EDITORS DESK
ust Back from Vegas and I am heavy on Tech. Las Vegas is now also known apart from all the colorful things as a tech destination, thanks to CES which keeps raising the bar each year and one just gets fully immersed in the array of new launches and announcements. This time I had an opportunity to have a One on One with Gary Shapiro, President CEA the man behind pulling off such a giant show and undoubtedly one of the most powerful man in the tech Industry. We have him covered exclusively in this Issue and know it from him what it takes to organize CES. Tech thy second name is change and with the ever-changing tech world that we live in, it’s more than obvious that we need to keep ourselves updated more than ever. With smartphones, tablets and countless apps – we are actually spoilt for choices with the Way we can keep ourselves updated. It’s a matter of choice, some people might love the Apple environment and the iOS software, some prefer the flexibility of Android and some might want the familiarity of Windows. Whatever you choose, I only encourage you to fully understand the environment you are getting into and then make full use of the potential of that environment.
There are some gadgets, however, that didn’t rely on any Operating Systems in the past. Digital Camera’s – for example. But, it seems even these faithful cameras have undergone a ‘smart’ evolution and have now integrated Android OS’ into them. It may have started with some unknown or not-so-well brands launching some of these, but Samsung’s smart camera launch has been a game-changer for the better. Users will now be able to take amazing pics on the go and simply upload to any social networking site using a 3G data SIM card. Cool? I think we are only scratching at the surface at how gadgets can be mixed and mashed together to provide multiple roles with just one body. As time goes by, we will see more and more amazing gadgets – and defining a category for tech products will be all the more challenging. Anyhow, we dug into this idea of pitting one product category against another for our main feature story and have come up with something exciting that I’m sure will tickle your bones. It’s not easy to compare an orange to an apple (obviously), but in the tech world and with our expertise, we can pretty much do anything we put our creative minds to. And it will take an open mind from you to accept and appreciate the fun factor of this write-up. In more changes, Facebook is introducing a new Graph Search feature – we’ve covered it quite extensively in this issue. Plus, we are starting up ‘Buying Guide’ feature and every month we will give you a low down on one category, with Tablet & Earphone taking up this month and camera buying guide coming soon in March. Also if you ask me my favourite pick from this Issue it would be Decoding John McAfee whose life is no less than a Hollywood thriller, and did I tell you that actually there is a Hollywood Flick coming soon based on him. Turn to Page 62. Towards the end of January and by the time you are reading this, I am fairly certain you will be reading about Blackberry’s new re-incarnation of BB OS 10 and their corresponding devices. There will also be buzz about MWC, which we will naturally cover in our next issue. So, till we meet again – keep yourselves updated and stay connected.
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Publisher & Chief Editor RAMESH SOMANI EDITORIAL Deputy Editor Chaitanya Tapase (email@example.com) Editor - exhibitmag.com Malik Sumrani (firstname.lastname@example.org) & Social Media Manager Christophe Brisset, Ipsit Roy, Ronnie Ganguly, Contributing Editors Shannen D., Sanjoy Alexander, Tom Clark, Arnab Banerjee, Apoorva Shah Consulting Editor N.K. Goyal (Govt. of India - Chairman, Emeritus TEMA)
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The publishers apologetically announce that they cannot be liable incase of any errors and/or omissions in the publication. The content, opinions and views in the magazine are not necessarily those of the publishers. Readers are requested to cross check from specialists before acting on the information which are mainly targeted for general use and may not be apt for the readers’ circumstances. The ownership of trademarks is acknowledged. Edited, published, printed & owned by Ramesh Somani for Exhibit Technologies Pvt. Ltd., “Diamond Chambers” Block - II, Floor 10 I EXHIBIT I FEBRUARY 2013 9, Unit - 9I, 4 Chowringee Lane, Kolkata - 700016. Printed at CDC Printers Pvt. Ltd., Tangra Industrial Estate - II, 45 Rabrindranath Chowdhary Rd, Kolkata - 700015. Place of publication - 3A, Auckland Square, Kolkata - 700017.
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Revel Performa3 Loudspeakers
Samsung Galaxy Grand
Complementing their industry - leading value and performance, Harman launched Revel Performa3 loudspeakers that are stunning in appearance, with a choice of high-gloss walnut or piano black finishes that are overseen by master Italian craftsmen for unparalleled quality. Revel Performa3 loudspeakers deploy proprietary drivers throughout. The 1-inch aluminium-dome tweeters deliver airy, extended high-frequency response to beyond 20 kHz, with superlative detail and clarity. The tweeters operate into an exclusive patent-pending Acoustic Lens Waveguide that is precisely shaped using an entirely-new mathematical approach. These new waveguides result in an utterly seamless transition from the midrange to tweeter; greatly enhancing the sense of reality and musicality.
Unveiled at a press conference earlier this month, the Samsung Galaxy Grand is an extremely good phone in the below `25,000 phone category. Priced at `21,500, the phone boasts of powerful features like an Android 4.1.2 (Jelly Bean) operating system and a 1.2 GHz Dual Core processor. Even though it supports a massive 5.0â€? screen with WVGA TFT display powered with mDNIe technology, the device is incredibly slim and comes with an ergonomic design which makes is comfortable to hold. The vivid display provides an expansive viewing experience rendering messaging, multimedia and Web content in brilliant colour and clarity. The device also sports the Multi Window feature that allows seamless multitasking and running of multiple applications simultaneously without having to switch screens.
LAUNCHES OF Alpha A99
24 megapixels of pure bliss for a photographer, Sony Alpha 99 uses a dual focus system that is the first of its kind. The external body is made up of full magnesium alloy and has an extensive weather sealing system. The camera is priced at `1,79,990 (body only).
Key Specifications: 24MP full-frame CMOS Sensor with on-chip phase detection AF Fixed-mirror design SLT 2.4M dot OLED electronic viewfinder 14-bit Raw output ISO 100-25,600 12 I EXHIBIT I FEBRUARY 2013
Nokia Lumia 820
Strontium Gold Plated USB Drives
The Nokia Lumia 820 is a stylish, mid-range Smartphone that delivers high-end performance in a compact package. Microsoft’s unique productivity offerings also make the Nokia Lumia 820 the obvious Smartphone choice for any type of business. While the Nokia Lumia 820 has the same unibody look and feel as the high end Lumia smart phones, it comes with exchangeable shell covers in a range of vibrant colours, including the option to add wireless charging. Like the Nokia Lumia 920, the Nokia Lumia 820 also boasts the world’s most sensitive touch screen and Nokia Clear Black display technology or easy visibility in the brightest sunlight. The Nokia Lumia 820 is priced at `27,559.
Singapore based company Strontium Technology launched premium solid metal USB drives called Ammo. Ammo Flash drive comes in a sturdy brushed metal casing with a sleek look keeping in mind the demands and requirements of discerning users who want a high quality and high class product. The sleek and robust design works not only with Windows platform desktop PC, notebook PCs and Apple iMac and MacBook as well. These USB 2.0 gold plated flash drives are available from 16 GB to 64 GB capacity. They are priced from `770 up to `2,919. The silver plated flash drives are available from 4 GB to 64 GB and are priced from `385 up to `1,219.
THE MONTH Videocon 65” DDB Television (Model No. VJF65PA-XS) The Videocon 65” DDB Television (Model No. VJF65PA-XS) is the pinnacle of DDB enabled Smart Television. Amalgamating product features like 3D Technology, 4 Trillion Display Colour, Dual Core Processor, Omni Surround, Faroudja Video & Audio Optimized and Strata Certified Audio; the Videocon 65” DDB enabled television brings in the best of Digital Direct TV technology in a 3D Smart TV package. The Flicker Free 3D TV is laden with industry best features like Smart Connect (HDMI-CEC), File Sharing, 2X HDMI and 1X USB 2.0 for Movie, JPEG and MP3 output. It has a 14 Bit Video Processor along with 10 Band Graphic Equalizers. Other feature set of the Videocon 65” DDB Television which is priced at about `2,09,990/- includes Self Diagnosis, Photo Effect, Body Mass Index (BMI) and Health Care View. So you no more need multiple devices, your Videocon DDB LED will do it all!
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It’s a new era and the battle has got a bigger turf this time F
By Ipsit Roy
our big names in the world of technology have been creeping into each other’s turf for years. In 2013, their war is set to escalate around two fronts: hardware and search. With new products and services expected in 2013, Apple, Google, Facebook and Amazon-will battle it out over hardware and search. Read on to find how four major players in the world of technology are fighting it out with each other to claim supremacy in the market. Software giants including Google and Amazon are interested in ramping up hardware to boost customer loyalty and to extend control over their software services and the revenues that flow from them. That is heightening their collision course with Apple, which is responding by building more of its own software to make its devices stand out. Google, with the $12.5 billion purchase of Motorola Mobility under its belt, plans to use the phone maker to release new Android devices to help knock Apple’s iPhone off its perch. And Amazon, which has upped the ante in the tablet wars with the Kindle Fire, has also been testing its own phone. Apple’s foray is Siri, a voice-activated service that answers queries about topics like the weather or sports scores from the iPhone or iPad homescreen. The company will continue its hunt for new data to power the service, making it useful for a broader number of queries. Facebook Chief Executive Mark Zuckerberg riffed on the myriad ways that friends could provide useful answers. He said the company would expand its search capabilities in the future. Opus Research analyst Greg Sterling tells how these four companies are clashing in other areas as well, from e-commerce to online ads. “They are all getting into each other’s market,” he said. “It is a land grab in a way” to appeal to developers, who can help make their services truly ubiquitous.
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WHAT’S COOKING? APPLE
“Intense interest” in televisions
Google Wallet might get a push towards some serious business
Mobile centric business for maximum cash flow
The much awaited smartphone might just hit the market
Rivals from Samsung Electronics to Amazon are gunning for the Cupertino, Calif., company, which has turned out category-defining devices like the iPhone and iPad for years. Those competitors are having some success. Apple’s share of global smartphone shipments fell to 15% in the third quarter, according to IDC, down from 23% in the first quarter of the year.
Google moved aggressively into new territories this year, clashing not only with its main rivals but also with cable companies and wireless carriers.
At Facebook, 2012 was the year of the initial public offering. This year, the focus will be on the social network’s continuing transformation into a mobile-centric business and how far it is willing to go to own the smartphone experience. Over the past year, the Menlo Park, Calif., company has rewritten its mobile applications, rolled out mobile-advertising products and promoted new stand-alone mobile applications, such as its messenger service.
For Amazon, 2013 may be the year that it rolls out its long-rumored smartphone. The Seattle Web retailer has been testing a smartphone with its Asian suppliers and could introduce it early this year, according to people familiar with the company’s plans. An Amazon smartphone would build off the company’s experience with its Kindle Fire HD devices and its burgeoning app store, which now has more than 60,000 apps running on Google’s Android software.
Phones are just one area where Apple has to watch its back. Android tablets are also gaining ground against the iPad. To defend its turf, Apple which this year became the most valuable U.S. company in history recently released the iPad Mini, a cheaper tablet aimed at competing against the slew of smaller tablets that have debuted. Apple CEO Tim Cook has stressed Apple’s “intense interest” in television and the company has been testing high-definition televisions and discussing possible partnerships over set-top boxes with cable companies. Whether anything will be ready for prime time this year remains unclear. An Apple spokesman said the company didn’t want to discuss future products and plans. As for another new area, watch search and Siri. Following Apple’s ill-fated foray into maps this year, the company is continuing to invest in its voice-activated assistant that routes users to sports scores and other on-the-go information. Earlier this year, Apple poached Amazon search executive William Stasior.
This year, the Web-search giant will work harder to control its own destiny to ensure that its search engine, YouTube video site and newer services such as Google Wallet (which lets people use their smartphones like a digital wallet) can reach consumers without being hobbled by poor Internet speeds or blocked by competitors. That means accelerating initiatives it launched this year, such as wiring homes with high-speed Internet and video in Kansas City, a prelude to rollouts in other locations after 2013; exploring potential ways to control wireless Internet access through partnerships; and manufacturing smartphones and tablets through Motorola, which will give it greater say on the services that run on the devices. Expect Google to also help develop more Web-connected devices for people’s homes, powered by Google’s Android mobile operating system. Google has pushed users of its search engine, Gmail and other services to sign up for Google+, which is a cross between Facebook and Twitter Inc. that allows people to share news, photos, videos and more. The company must decide this year whether it will partner with an auto maker to create a self-driving car using Google’s software or get involved in manufacturing more directly. Separately, Google’s wearable computing device, called Glass, also will be released.
Rivals and tech executives also want to know if or when Facebook will push into hardware. Mr. Zuckerberg has publicly quashed rumors that the company is building a Facebook phone, calling such a move “wrong strategy.” However, people close to the company said Facebook has worked closely with handset manufacturers, such as HTC Corp to design phones. A Facebook-backed device, which will likely run a modified version of Google’s Android mobile operating system, would help the social network promote the usage of its applications and gather more data from users. Facebook is also expected to ramp up its search offerings this year. This month, it released a new mobile feature that helps users discover nearby businesses based on their friends and the broader social network. E-commerce will become increasingly important to Facebook, as it builds its recently launched Gifts business. The e-commerce platform—which lets users send goods, like Starbucks SBUX -0.22% gift cards and cookies, to friends—poses a threat to Amazon, especially as Facebook adds more retail partners.
Such a device could also cut into Apple’s iPhone market share and challenge device makers who build Android smartphones, such as Samsung. Amazon could release its smartphone as a low-cost, low-profit gadget that is built to profit from the sale of merchandise on its Amazon. com website, as well as e-books, games and apps. That is the approach Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos has taken with his tablet computers, describing them as a sales platform rather than a profit generator in their own right. A smartphone would also further pressure retailers by easing online purchases in retail stores, where Amazon has encouraged consumers to experience merchandise and buy it later online, a practice known as showrooming. Amazon is also going after Apple in another area: tablets. The latest iteration of the Kindle Fire tablet has gained traction and some critical accolades. Expect Amazon to push out another lowcost update this year that could further entrench its users into the Amazon ecosystem.
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SMARTEST OF THEM ALL L ate s t. Fas te s t. S m o o th e s t .
Phablet PIII Android v4.1.1 Jelly Bean 1 GHz Dual Core Advanced Processor 152mm (6") Display Dual Camera (Rear: 8MP Autofocus & Front camera for Video Chatting) World’s first dual SIM 3G 152mm (6”) Phablet.
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1.2 GHz Dual Core Advanced Processor Android v4.1.1 Jelly Bean 114mm (4.5â€?) qHD Display Dual SIM, 3G Support Dual Camera (8MP Autofocus Rear Camera & Front Camera for Video Chatting)
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mi book Mi8 Tablet
mi book Mi7 Tablet 1.2 GHz Dual Core Advanced Processor,
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Wi-Fi, Bluetooth GPS Support
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17 I EXHIBIT I FEBRUARY 2013
A Scratch N Water Resistant Offering the sony xperia z
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Quick First Look
The Sony Xperia Z is the phone that’s set to propel the Japanese firm to the head of the phone charts - and if it went on specs alone, there’s a good chance it would manage it. We’re looking at yet another redesign from the Sony design studios - from the Sony Ericsson Xperia Arc to the Xperia Z, we’ve had four iterations of the smartphone aesthetic. From the ‘human curvature’ through to the more industrial Xperia S, back to the curves for the Xperia T and now with the sharp edges of the Xperia Z, we’re constantly being given new looks.
What Makes It Tick
While we - rightly - lambast Apple for not really changing the look of the iPhone from model to model, this is a lot to take in. However, the good news is that the Xperia Z is probably the most attractive of the lot, with its superbly thin 7mm chassis, 1080p 5-inch screen and quad core Qualcomm processor kicking things along under the hood. In short, this is the most powerful Sony smartphone ever made, and the brand tells us it’s the first model it’s really had a strong influence on since it took the manufacturing over from the Ericsson joint venture. The new design language will permeate through the entire Bravia range apparently, bringing an iconic look to products in the TV, phone and other categories. It make sense, given Sony needs to push the ‘connected home’ message, but also probably means the Xperia Tablet S will be obsolete before it’s even had a chance to get going. But what of the Xperia Z, we hear you cry? Is this the final message in the Xperia range thanks to nabbing the last letter of the alphabet? Well, probably not, but it does deserve to have the Z moniker thanks to the sheer awesome power on offer.
Crisp Bright Display
We’ve already mentioned the 1080p 5-inch screen, and it’s probably both the most impressive and disappointing feature on the Xperia Z. It’s impressive because it’s so pin sharp, coming with a post-400 PPI and offering some lovely contrast ratios. On top of that, it’s much closer to the edges of the device, meaning that it has a footprint very close to the Samsung Galaxy S3 while packing that massive display. However, we say we’re disappointed in it as it really does lack the impression of a Super AMOLED screen when viewed even slightly off angle. Look at the phone on a table and you’ll be surprised how washed out the display seems, compared to the almost printed-on nature of the Samsung S3 or Galaxy Note 2.
We say we’re most disappointed in this feature and that tells a story in itself: it’s not a big deal at all as you will mostly be looking at the phone straight on for 99% of the time, so for this to be the worst of it means it’s an excellent smartphone.
The interface is also a pleasure to use: it’s Android Jelly Bean 4.1 running on top of a Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 Pro quad core CPU with 2GB of RAM. We’re a little sad that we’re not seeing Android 4.2 used here, but Sony assures us that it has placed a minimal skin over the top of the OS and can be upgraded very easily when needed. An upgrade to Android 4.2 is on the cards with Sony currently working on it and it hopes to make it available to users as soon as possible although no release date has been given just yet. In terms of the interface, it’s recognizably Sony but doesn’t add too many bells and whistles; gone is the resource-intensive and pointless Timescape ‘Splines’ that dominated the old interface. Instead we’re presented with a sea of icons and widgets that you can resize and change as you see fit, and not much else. The Sony Xperia Z will definitely appeal to those who are fans of stock Android but like the idea of having a little personalisation in their handset - although the lock screen does at least offer a cool way to open up the camera or unlock the phone. You can have little home screens on this part of the interface too, so you can set calendar, social network or messaging updates to show without you needing to actually start up the phone proper-like.
There’s no doubt that Sony has stepped up its game with the Xperia Z. We were pretty unimpressed with the screen quality when we first saw the handset sitting nonchalantly on the table, and if you’re not using the phone straight on, then you may not think you’re staring at a topend smartphone. But that aside, the rest of the device impressed us hugely. From the premium design, the weight and industrial casing and the larger edgeto-edge screen to the high-end Exmor RS sensor and Bravia Engine 2, there’s so much that Sony will be able to tout on its marketing literature.
SPECIFICATIONS • • • • • •
5” Full HD TFT capacitive touchscren 1.5 Ghz quad-core processor Adreno 320 GPU 2GB RAM Android OS v4.1 (upgradable to v4.2) 16GB internal, microSD card support up to 32GB
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AWESOME FOURSOME Elecom Windows 8 Keyboard There isn’t anything quite like Razor’s Deathstalker keyboard. Instead of a traditional num pad sits a customizable touchscreen LCD capable of displaying whatever your heart desires. However if the prospect of spending $250 is a bit too daunting to your wallet, you might want to consider this the Elecom TK-FDP055BK keyboard. The Elecom TK-FDP055BK keyboard, which is wireless mind you, supplants the normal numpad for a touchpad, which means that OS X and Windows 8 gestures are completely at your disposal even if you’re not on a laptop or touchscreen device, respectively of course. But in the event you’re rounding up your monthly spending habits into Quickbooks, you can hit a switch and instantly turn it into a number pad. Other features include media playback keys designed specifically for Windows, an easy to clean design that won’t accumulate dust and crumbs, and takes two AA batteries that are said to be good for up to 4 months.
La Sardina Metal Camera Using the latest technology but embedded in a casing which looks like an exact camera from the 1930′s, this collection was exclusively created for those who enjoy taking scenery shots and family portraits using various techniques. As the saying goes, old is gold, this collection is made from hammer finished metal with elegant strips which is just about the right amount to suit its purpose. It is not too heavy and it comes in various colors and patterns. The La Sardina allows you to wave good bye to your focusing problems as it has only two options which is easy to choose from. If you have always wanted to have a camera which has a big flash on the right, then this camera has it all. It has one of the most powerful flashes which uses three different color filters and has different setting options for different purposes.
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OF THE MONTH LG Tone Stereo Bluetooth Headset Go cable-free while listening to your smartphone music with the LG Tone HBS-700. This 31-gms stereo Bluetooth headset has an aroundthe-neck design with dedicated music and talk controls, impressive audio clarity (echo-cancellation and noise-suppression technology) and up to 10 hours of talk time between charges (and 15 days of standby). Unlike many other music-centric wireless headsets, this LG product also has a battery status check, vibrating call alert and support for the free SMS Reader app (Android) that reads your text messages to you in real time.
The Qube from ASUS Okay, so the Google TV world has been a little stagnant lately. Alright, a lot stagnant. But, this is CES! There are plenty of new devices and gadgets and stuff to play with. While LG is on the other side of the show floor showing of its Google TVs (that is, TVs running Google TV), ASUS would like to introduce you to its Google TV box. The distinguishing feature on this one? It’s a cube! Yes, both the box itself and the UI feature cubes everywhere. It feels very reminiscent of Compiz Fusion (is that still what they call it? Dang thing changed names like five times) and certainly catches the eye. Whether or not it will be intuitive for end users remains to be seen, though. Most people don’t tend to think in 3 dimensions that easily. Hence why Rubik’s cubes are so hard. Aside from the custom overlay, the unit comes with pretty standard fare. A remote control with a QWERTY keyboard, voice controls (which are pretty much standard in GTV now), and gestures. In terms of hardware, the box features two HDMI out ports, an Ethernet connection, USB, and an IR blaster. The device will retail between $100-120 when it’s released at... some point.
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What is Adobe doing in the middle of desert?
Deep in Utah’s high desert, Adobe is putting the finishing touches on its latest outpost — a lowslung but stylish 280,000-square-foot compound.Sadly, the circumstances surrounding the building sound more mysterious than their reality, even with the NSA’s new data center as a close neighbor. As Wired reports, the location in the south suburbs of Salt Lake City is an up-and-coming region for tech business sometimes called “Silicon Slope.” Adobe’s new campus will operate as the company’s digital marketing division. By Ipsit Roy The building itself, however, is unlike anything Adobe has ever built before. The company has hired designers from Rapt Studio to make sure the building design is integrated into the space at the deepest level, ensuring that, despite being an office building at its core, this isn’t just one more massive tech campus.
75-foot mural of a girl drawing on a tried to formulate the new Adobe, but in telling that story, we built a space where there are walls that speak to the history,” says Sistrunk. “The concept’s there that there’s this innocence that children have around the idea of creativity that we want to remind people of.”
David Galullo, CEO, and Cory Sistrunk, design principal, told the media, “We pride ourselves in not having kind of a Rapt look, but instead we try to make sure that we’re asking the right questions, that we’re pushing on a client to make sure that we’re getting exactly who they are, what their culture is, and what they’d like to be, and that our designs actually point in that direction,” says Galullo.He and Sistrunk use forceful language. They’re enforcing their design ideals, pushing the company to capitulate, and capturing the attention of the employees. “It’s not something that you do just lobby, or in a huge communal space,” Galullo says. “It’s something that just permeates the entirety of the project.” Miles McGregor, a street artist from LA, has created a
Near the entrance, Adobe had a sort of lounge installed with touch panels, where clients and employees can chat about ideas.”There’s an area, we actually put a gas fireplace in, and it’s kind of the hearth of the customer experience,” says Galullo. Rapt developed plans for the building in concert with WRNS Studio architects, says Galullo.”There was a healthy push and shove between the interior and exterior that allowed the building not to be designed just as a beautiful piece of architecture … but was designed as an integrated interior-exterior,” he says. “Because of that, the design aesthetic and the program bled through from the interior to the exterior and back in again.”
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GAME REVIEW: LITTLE BIG PLANET KARTING United Front is back with a cute, clever and customizable title that is some serious fun and a racer at heart. LittleBigPlanet 2.5 on wheels, is somewhat similar to a previous effort, the Mario Kart killer that was ModNation Racers and draws a lot of its feel-good factor from the velvety charm of narrator Stephen Fry.
What’s good? The action has been stripped back from ModNation Racers, dispensing with that game’s ability meter in favor of grab-and-go weaponators that can be plucked off the track and used once for offence or defense. That puts this game’s strategy more in the old Mario Kart School of offence, and leaves you with a choice of using your weapon to clear the road or holding on to it to keep your tail covered while you rely on skill - or the famous grappling hook - to keep you in the race. What’s not? There is a frustrating lack of balance in the weaponators, with the homing missile better off going home than being in the racer’s arsenal and the fast-forward function simply moves Sackboy further up the track. It can take a while to reach any kind of understanding with the weapons, and once confidence is attained it’s more fun to play the battle modes or find a friend than simply race against the machine. LittleBigPlanet Karting aspires to be a racing game and a do-itall engine, and it succeeds at the latter more than the former. The magic is still there, but as Sackboy continues on his path to lead mascot status, he risks becoming a stale old bag. Thankfully, the tools exist for you to modify the experience until it at least resembles your ideal game.
Reviewed By: Ipsit Roy
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Rating: Platform: PlayStation 3 Rated: G
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Suspense Finally Ends, Graph Search E
arlier last week, Facebook sent the world in a tizzy when it sent a message stating that there will be a press conference on 15th January. Several speculations were made on why this announcement? The wait finally ended as Mark Zuckerberg unveiled the latest feature on Facebook - Graph Search.
Graph Search is being considered as Facebook’s third pillar after Timeline and Newsfeed. The feature will be a fully integrated Facebook search, very similar to the lines of web search. So now one can directly search the website for more relatable results. For example, you can now directly search for “Hip - Hop Music lovers in Mumbai” and Graph Search will provide results amongst friends and others. The main four areas where this feature works are people, photos, places and interests. What limits this search would be the aspect that it can only accommodate that is available on Facebook but cannot pull data of Twitter, and other social networks. What Facebook does promise that this search would truly be intense. Users would now be able to pull up any data that they or their friends must have uploaded on Facebook, EVER! This could be embarrassing pictures from a particular party or something which you once shared on the website and truly repented it. Zuckerberg also explained that the Graph Search will be “Privacy Aware.” So all content that has been shared with a user, only that content will be available on the search. So if there is something that one wants to hide from the Graph Search, simply hide it or delete it from the timeline. Facebook considers this as one of most important updates to the Social Networking giant this year. It is truly worth being excited about and awaiting in the near future.
Addiction Returns: Temple Run 2 is Here!
mangi Studios have unveiled the second version of its most popular mobile phone app - Temple Run. After more than 20 million downloads, 7 million DAUs, it was a top grosser and a top of the chart app for several months. After all the success it received, a couple of years after its first launch, Imangi Studios have unveiled Temple Run 2. With very little fanfare and a small announcement, Imangi Studio co - founder Keith Shepherd stated that, “We wanted to set out and do all the things we wanted to do with Temple Run but we couldn’t fit in,” Shepherd adds. “It feels like a bigger, better, more awesome version of the first game.” The team at Imangi Studios developed the game in 5 months and have not only added new dimensions and upgrades but changed it in a whole new way. So, What’s New In This One After playing the game for a couple of times (Ok we are lying, we have played it like 10 times now and still can’t stop playing), here is what we think of it. • • • • •
The graphics are a lot better than the previous version. Gameplay is tougher as there are many new added obstacles to the course. Newly added features like the mine cart and the zip line is an amazing addition as it adds a whole new element of fun and excitement to the game. There are many new power ups. There is a total of playable 4 characters in the game.
Shepherd further stated that, “The world you’re running in is much more rich and vibrant,” he added, “There are curves and hills and valleys and stairs.” *The game is available for iPhone and iPad currently. The Android version is subjected to release soon.
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Mark Zuckerberg Attempts To Goad The Founder Of Facebook If you think you read something wrong then you did not, if you think it is a misprint, then it isn’t. It is true that Mark Zuckerberg wants to goad the founder of Facebook. Since there will be raised eyebrows by now, we will break the ice. An Israeli businessman legally changed his named to Mark Zuckerberg in order to goad the founder of Facebook into suing him. Why would he do this? Simply because he wants to raise the profile of his own organization. Rotem Guez (birth name) offers a service of selling Facebook likes, artificially driving traffic to advertisers on Facebook who buy his service. This is considered illegal by Facebook and they have already sent him two cease and desist letters. What is more ironical is that Guez got his name changed only a couple of months back and he already has a passport and an ID to match his new “Mark Zuckerberg” identity. In interviews he did mention, “ “I just thought it would be funny when they sue Mark Zuckerberg.” He openly claims that he is not scared of Facebook and his only motive is to grow the company. One of the reason being that he believes Facebook is a California based company and he is in Israel. Facebook did close Guez’s account for selling “Likes” to which, he claimed “may no longer access the Facebook website or use Facebook’s services for any purpose whatsoever.” When Guez visited the ministry to get his name changed he was questioned by a clerk. Not only this but his decision was also called problematic and misleading. But a few attempts of going back and forth the application was approved. Guez later on did claim that he did not want to be Mark Zuckerberg for life but he would now have to hang on to the name of seven years. Guez’s parents and his wife are used to his antics. But this time around, it was one of the richest men in the tech space who had to face his wrath.
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Las Vegas Celebrates 2013, An Exclusive Interview With Gary Shapiro And Lots More… The Consumer Electronic Show (CES), 2013 at Las Vegas was an extravaganza, which gave a new definition to innovation over 4 days. Exhibit was invited to the event and we bring all that you need to know from this technology fiesta. Right from Crazy products to eye - opening surprises, it was a feast for any technology lover. We truly stuffed ourselves with all that we could.
3rd generation Intel® Core™ processors will help ensure even the most advanced, fullfledged PC games will function at full capacity, and NVIDIA GeForce graphics will offer striking visual clarity. Razer Edge is a PC, a Tablet and a Gaming Console... all packed in one we found this gaming device to be extremely fascinating.
Gary Shapiro, CEA President and CEO stated that, “To see innovation in action, just walk the show floor, packed with 3,000 exhibitors across more than 1.8 million net square feet of space highlighting the newest products and services. We are expecting 1,50,000 attendees, including 35,000 international visitors, to come to Las Vegas to see what is new, expand their businesses and understand new technology.”
This year we witnessed several innovative watches that turned numerous heads. Right from child trackers to Android watches, who thought these features would be available at one’s wrist.
This annual event, like each year did not disappoint. Not only were there new products, but also several new companies that managed to create some waves at the event. With a galore of gadgets, the head honchos of several big corporations and lots more.. here we bring to you the best of CES, 2013. They Came, They Saw, They Conquered.
For Those Gaming Maniacs NVIDIA’s Project Shield One of the most awaited products - NVIDIA’s Project Shield was finally unveiled this year. We will not lie, we were truly awestruck the very moment its functions and capabilities were demonstrated. Packed with Tegra 4 mobile processor, our immediate reaction to this was WOW! Slightly bulkier in size, the controller’s appearance is similar to that of an XBOX 360. With a 5 - inch and a 720p display, the device looked extremely promising to us. It truly lives up to all the hype. Razer Edge Introduced as Project Fiona, Razer Edge caught our fancy because it is a coalition of technology from Intel and NVIDIA. Powerful
The Changing “Times”
Pebble Pebble’s creator, Eric Migicovsky, who was present at the event made a super presentation to highlight its features. Although not as extravagant as those it was competing with, Pebble focuses on few simple features and has perfectly mastered them. You can get quick text, call and E - mail notifications on this wrist watch. Who cares where their mobile phone is now! VivoPlay Debutants Evado Filip brought some relief for parents with their watch VivoPlay. The wide band watch is aimed at parents who are always concerned about the whereabouts of their kids and would want to have a keen eye on them. A parent has to feed in 5 phone numbers into the device. The watch has the ability to track your kid using GPS, Wi – Fi or GSM. Well, for us this truly looked like a sneak - peek into the future.
Tring - Tring Battle
Like each year, the Smartphone industry did witness a battle amongst some of the top brands. With progressing times, Mobile Phone segment surprises each and everyone greatly. Sony Xperia Z When we heard the phone is water and dust resistant, we could not believe it. When someone poured water over the phone, we
were certain its true. The Japanese giants are surely looking to pack a punch in the coming year with features like Android 4.1 – Jellybean (upgradeable to 4.2), 2 GB RAM and Adreno 320, now users can render everything at 1080p resolution. Yes, this phone can survive our torrid monsoons. Samsung We were expecting the unveiling of the curved screen phone from Samsung, but what surprised us was the flexible screen capability of the other phone. One truly cannot describe the chills we felt when they twisted and turned that mobile phone screen on all fours. Both phones comprise of a windows operating software and we cannot wait to watch them roll out in the markets. Family Time Has A New Definition Television sets this year not only changed in size but also in technology specs. This time around we saw aspects that only amazed us but also changed the way we looked towards the added family member in our family - The television set. Trust us, it is no longer an idiot box, it got really, really SMART. The Big Daddies These TV’s that we saw were seriously huge when it came to screen size. Westinghouse unveiled a 110 - inch 4K television. If you have a big budget and choose to go for it, you may want to cut down on a wall in your house. Samsung was not far behind as it unveiled a gorgeous looking 85 - inch ultra HD television. What’s amazing is that it functions on gesture controls. So, its time you threw away that remote control. 4K and OLED Is Here Sony combined both forms of technology 4K and OLED in one. The 56 - inch television was one of the most impressive launches we witnessed from Sony. Samsung too wasn’t far behind as they unveiled a 55 - inch OLED TV. We felt this TV had the upper hand as it has a “Curved” screen, which allows the distance between the user and the television set to
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remain the same from any angle. Panasonic also unvieled a 56 - inch OLED TV, which we did not find too fascinating as it had no new striking features. Phablets and Tablets Turned Some Heads At CES, after all that we had witnessed amongst the Smartphone sector, we sure were expecting something unique in Phablets and Tablets. Panasonic’s 20 - inch Gizmo In a way we were aware that the Japanese giants Panasonic will make a grand unveiling in at least one segment, what we could not gauge was what would it be. As amazed as we were, they unveiled a 20 - inch tablet. That was not all, it offers a Windows 8 operating system and 1.8GHz Intel Core i5 processor, 4 GB RAM and a 128GB SSD. That is some serious power packed in a Tablet. Huawei Brings In World’s Largest Screen Crossing the under half a foot barrier in Phablets, Huawei’s Ascend Mates screen size was a whopping 6.1 inches. That was not the only thing that impressed us. Its features comprised of 361 ppi display, a 4,050mAh battery and a 1.5GHz HiSilicon K3V3 quad-core chip. Phablets are surely the next big thing and they are here to stay!
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Others The several other products that caught our attention were:
Oculus Rift The virtual reality headset, Oculus Rift surely opened doors to something we had not witnessed yet. A simple headset that can take you to a world you could have only imagined. It literally creates a whole new world around you. Taking gaming to a whole new level, we feel Oculus Rift is not just a device, it is a technological revolution. It has speed, it has accuracy, it has everything. We were truly impressed. A simple headset does this all! iRobot Probably one of the most impressive apps, and truly the most noble one, according to us it was one heavily impressive apps at the event. This iPad app has to added to a Robot that then follows the commands of the device. The robot functions like a medical assistant will now allow absent doctors to speak to their patients directly from any location. So now as a doctor you could be simply at home but your medical “Robotic” assistant will run some preliminary checks and provide reminders to your patient on your behalf. With so many mesmerizing products, honchos from the Tech industry and more, Exhibit truly
had an amazing experience. We also spoke to Gary Shapirov and John Kelley who were kind enough to share their views with us. SmartSound Case Another piece of technology that impressed us was the SmartSound Case. Now you no longer need to attach separate speakers as the case naturally amplifies the sound from the phone speaker. The case can be used as a Kickstand and can be folded for a flat portage. This is not all, it also includes a camera flash reflector to maximize brightness and a detachable camera lens cover. Impressed? We surely were. Air Drone 2.0 We had only heard of these and we are glad we could witness this product at CES. Air Drone 2.0 is a video capturing device that can stream and record amazing aerial video and pictures to a phone. Now you can become a pilot and control the take - off, landing, hovering and looping of this device with ease. If this technology is adopted fully, this can be of some amazing help for systems like traffic control in a city. There is a robust protective hull to protect the camera from crashes.
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CES’ BIG BOSS TALKS TO Exhibit: With such a buzz created every year before CES, what is your secret behind managing your composure and still pull off such an amazing event? Gary: We have an amazingly great and competent team. Plus, we plan. Every year the International CES is more exciting, and I continue to be amazed by the 20,000 products that are launched on the show floor. I look forward to hosting the world’s largest innovation event year-around, and I view CES as one of the biggest business opportunities in the world. Exhibit: What was the footfall for CES 2013 and how does it compare to the past 5 years? Gary: Our tradeshow is independently audited every year, so we won’t know final attendance figures until the spring, but initial estimates put us at more than 150,000 industry professionals attending the 2013 International CES, which is on par with last year’s record attendance. Our average attendance over the past five years is 137,311. Exhibit: How many new international exhibitors were present in CES 2013? Gary: The International CES is truly international, with 1,300 companies (roughly 40 percent) of this year’s exhibitors having headquarters outside of the United States. Exhibit: Some tech start-ups really impressed at CES 2013, will they be driving the new innovations in the years to come? Gary: Small companies are in front for innovation. We introduced the Eureka Park TechZone at CES last year for the very reason that startup companies are the future of our industry. Eureka Park is an area of the show floor dedicated to entrepreneurs and start-up companies as an unique exhibiting opportunity to launch new products, ideas and services. Making these small companies visible to retailers, venture capitalists and manufacturers is key to the thriving success of our industry. Exhibit: How has the Management of CES ensured such high levels of participation for the event, even after all these years? Gary: We take a strategic approach to marketing and positioning the event which I describe in detail in my new book, Ninja Innovation. We also work hard to give every attendee a great experience. We also use fantastic relationships with our vendors who work their hardest to ensure success. Exhibit: We have witnessed 4K, OLED, Curved Surfaces and what not in television technology. Could you ever foresee something like this when you started? Gary: I have been talking about wall TV and immersive television for years. Yet the rapid innovations amaze me. Ultra High Definition (UHDTV) is the future of television technology. HDTV was a phenomenal success because it made DVDs look better. Ultra HD will succeed because it makes digital movies look great.
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Exhibit: If you had to pick a product or a brand that most people didn’t notice much at CES 2013, but you will be keeping an eye on – which one would it be? Gary: Be on the lookout for more and more coming from sensor technology. I will be keeping my eye on exhibitors in the MEMS TechZone. Exhibit: So many industry leaders and experts converge and rub shoulders together at CES. Which key - note did you find very interesting? Gary: I really enjoyed all of our keynotes this year. I thought that Dr. Paul Jacobs did an incredible job with his pre-show keynote address for Qualcomm. Panasonic, Samsung, Verizon were equally impressive. I also really enjoyed our two keynote panels: Next Generation of Innovators and Brand Matters. Exhibit: Your Personal favourite at CES Gary: All these products, exhibitors are like my children and it is hard to pick amongst your children. My favourite product would be the ultra HD, the flexible screen phone from Samsung too looked very promising. Qualcomm chips, they are also very exciting... At Eureka park, I saw a waterproofing company. These start - ups have some innovative things to offer. My was wife very excited about it. Healthcare products are making a lot of difference. I have many favourites at CES. Exhibit: Biggest game changers at CES Gary: There are 20,000 products here at CES and many of them are game changers. They may or may not succeed. When the iPod was introduced, it was not a game changer, it was an mp3 player... just designed better. The first gen mp3 player din’t get much noticed, but the 3rd generation did. Exhibit: If not Las Vegas, then which city could host CES? Gary: Only Vegas. It is the biggest city in the world and can host an event this big. It has more hotel rooms than any other city. More than 1,50,000 hotel rooms, it has 3 world class convention centres in USA, entire city is dedicated to business conventions, it has world class restaurants and it is a destination internationally, an airport which has a first class international terminal, it could only be Las Vegas Exhibit: Lastly, what are the biggest news making and game changing launches of CES 2013 according to you? Gary: While I can’t speak directly to specific products, the technology innovation at the 2013 CES was abundant. I really took note of the advancments in touch/gesture/sensor technologies, the incredible things happening in the cloud, advancements in digital health and fitness plus wireless home automation. The 2013 CES was the largest app event in the world, and it was great to see the continued growth of connected videos and tablets replacing other screens.
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Who is Aaron Swartz? For all those who never heard his name, it’s a crying shame. Aaron Swartz is the name that changed the world of internet or rather RSS feeds forever. It was in 2001, when he was just 14, clever enough to help develop a new version of RSS feeds, which enabled blog posts, articles and videos to be distributed easily across the web. Fast forward from there Aaron was working with Sir Tim Berners-Lee, on enhancing the internet through the Semantic Web, in which webpage contents would be structured so that the underlying data could be shared and reused across different online applications. He was the brains behind Creative Commons, a project that simplified information-sharing through free, easy-to-use copyright licences. The Aaron you never knew or knew less • Swartz was a member of the RSS-DEV Working Group that co-authored the “RSS 1.0” specification of RSS, and built the website framework web.py and the architecture for the Open Library. He also built Infogami, a company that merged with Reddit in its early days, through which he became an equal owner of the merged company. • He cofounded the online group Demand Progress (known for its campaign against the Stop Online Piracy Act) and later worked with U.S. and international activist groups Rootstrikers and Avaaz. • On January 6, 2011, as a result of a federal investigation, Swartz was arrested in connection with systematic downloading of academic journal articles from JSTOR. Swartz opposed JSTOR’s practice of compensating publishers, rather than authors, out of the fees it charges for access to articles. Swartz contended that JSTOR’s fees limited access to academic work produced at American colleges and universities. • On the morning of January 11, 2013, Swartz was found hanged in his Crown Heights, Brooklyn apartment. Following his death, federal prosecutors in Boston dismissed the charges against him.
And that is exactly how Sir Tim Berners-Lee said, “Aaron dead. World wanderers, we have lost a wise elder. Hackers for right, we are one down. Parents all, we have lost a child. Let us weep.” Yeah. We sure did.
“Remembering the “wise elder”... R.I.P Aaron Swartz
GOOGLE: INTERNET USAGE FIGURES 2012 By Ronnie Ganguly Google has released statistics on global internet usage for 2012. According to the company the number of world-wide email users is at 2.2 billion with daily email traffic of 144 billion. Gmail emerged the most popular service provider with 425 million active users while Google’s web page and sites registered 191 million visitors as of November 2012. The report shows the number of internet users worldwide stands at 2.4 billion with Africa coming in fifth accounting for 167 million of those. Asia is the leading continent in internet usage with 1.1 billion users followed by Europe with 519 million, North America with 274 million, and 255 million users in Latin America and the Caribbean islands. The Middle East records 90 million users while Australia and Oceania regions account for 24.3 million users. The number of users in China alone is 565 million making it the country with the most users and internet penetration of 42.1 percent. On the social media platform, the report established Brazil as the most active country on Face book with 85,962 posts per month.
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Worldwide face book had 1 billion active users as of October 2012, 47 percent of those being female and a user average age of 40.5 years. Twitter followed in popularity with 200 million users with 163 billion tweets since its inception and a user age average of 37.3 years. Google+ recorded 135 million users while Google recorded 1.2 trillion searches in December 2012. The report also establishes that 6.7 billion people were accessing internet through their mobile phones 1.1 billion of those through smart phones. The number of mobile handsets was at 5.3 billion with 1.3 billion smart phones in use worldwide by end of 2012. 465 million android smart phones were sold in the same year. Google says it is almost impossible to capture all statistics seeing as the web has massive information but the prediction for 2013 is that people will rely more on the internet privately and professionally with more people using their mobile devices to access the internet while social media will become more significant to people’s lives as more use it not only for social networking but also to run their businesses.
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Balloons for space stations
A not so distant reality $150 billion dollars is what makes THE International Space Station (ISS) so important. January 16th saw NASA announcing ISS is to get an extension. This will not, as might have been the case on Earth, be a conservatory or loft conversion. Instead, it will be a BEAM, or Bigelow Expandable Activity Module. By Ipsit Roy
obert Bigelow, an American hotel entrepreneur and space enthusiast, has for years been pushing the idea that space stations should be made not of metal but of fabric. That would mean they could be folded up for launch and inflated in orbit.
less of the name, however, making spacecraft and space stations out of fabric offers several advantages over the tin-can approach. The most important is weight. Inflatable space stations are lighter than metal ones, and even small savings in weight make a big difference to launch costs.
An inflatable space station may sound like the proverbial chocolate teapot, but if you are going to have space stations at all, then inflation is not a bad way of making them. There have been many proposals in the past. Wernher von Braun, the patriotically flexible developer of the V2 military rocket (for Germany) and the Saturn V moon rocket (for America), sketched plans in the 1950s. The Goodyear Aircraft Corporation produced mock-ups in the early 1960s. In the 1980s the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory came up with a detailed space-exploration plan which relied on inflatable craft, thus quickly attracting the nickname “brilliant condoms”. And in the 1990s NASA proposed sending astronauts to Mars in an inflatable craft called TransHab.
Expandable modules may be safer, too. Ground tests by Bigelow Aerospace, Mr Bigelow’s vehicle for his orbital ambitions, suggest that the module’s walls—thick sandwiches of exotic fabrics such as Vectran (used in sailcloth and high-strength rope) and Nomex (from which fire-resistant suits are made)—offer better protection than metal ones against impacts from micrometeors and the increasing amount of artificial debris that is in orbit around Earth. They are also less likely than metals to generate dangerous secondary radiation when bombarded with things like cosmic rays. That is one reason why NASA was interested in using inflatable craft for the months-long journey to Mars.
Despite the branding possibilities offered by the Livermore version of the idea, Mr Bigelow and NASA prefer the less evocative term “expandable module” in their literature. Regard-
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This first station, dubbed the Alpha Station, will be equipped with laboratory equipment, workbenches and the like. Bigelow hopes to offer 60 days aboard it for around $26m, assuming that its guests make the trip into
orbit on one of the cheap rockets provided by SpaceX, another private space company. Bigelow hopes in particular to win business from governments without big space programmes of their own. To that end it has memoranda of understanding with several, including those of Britain, Japan and the Netherlands. It is also wooing the private sector, though that may prove tricky. There has long been talk of the advantages of “zero gravity” (actually, the continuous free-fall of orbit, rather than the total absence of a gravitational field) for manufacturing specialised materials whose components are of very different densities, and for growing specialised protein crystals for examination by pharmaceutical companies. This was, indeed, one of the sales pitches for the ISS. If renting the Alpha Station out as a laboratory does not work, there is always the option of turning it into a holiday house. Given Mr Bigelow’s background, it is often assumed that this is the plan anyway. The firm insists that it is not, at least for now. But who will really be interested in paying $26m to go into orbit remains to be seen. Inflated space stations are fine, as long as they do not lead to inflated expectations.
Tech Start-Ups Of The Month Each month Exhibit will now feature one or several promising entrepreneurs in the Tech world. These are not just any new businesses, they are different, innovative and they re define the words - Out of the Box. Veveo
Veveo is in to pioneering technologies that enable the implementation of intelligent interfaces for various industries including mobile, video & television, and enterprise. These interfaces are hyper-personalized, conversational, and dynamically adapt to users’ context.
A Massively Multiplayer Role - Playing Game, it allows millions from all across the world to compete in a virtual business world against each other. What makes it different from others who attempted in creating virtual reality a part of our worlds, is that this one is strictly business. It does not digress from its purpose or motive.
A speech recognition interface for Smartphone’s, Tablet’s, TVs and Set - Top Boxes.
Murali Aravamudan is the Chief Executive of Veveo. Murali is a technology pioneer and successful entrepreneur in mobile, communications, and multimedia. In addition to authoring 56 US patents and more than 30 pending patents, Murali has built and led businesses that have pioneered products and solutions in emerging industry categories.
Veveo’s “Smart Relevance Conversational Engine” goes beyond the conventional voice commands by attempting to understand the users intent. It goes deeper in understanding what the user wants. So, if you ask, “What time is India playing?”, the app will pull up results about when is India playing the cricket match. But, if you change your mind and ask, “Are there any action thrillers on?”, it would switch to movies and pull up results from Amazon, Netflix, etc.
The online portal boasts of creating a virtual world, which will offer a near life - like experience.
Mathew Georghio is a CEO, entrepreneur, engineer, author. Designer and publisher of educational games, simulations, and social networks. He has won several accolades of high prestige like Gold at Omni Intermedia, Silver World Medal at New York Festivals, etc. He is the Founder and CEO of a couple of start - up companies.
GoVentureWorld.com functions on the objective to build a successful business, as defined by revenue, profitability, market share, brand value, stock price, and more. To build a successful business, players must compete with businesses for resources and market share, while collaborating with other businesses to manufacture, acquire, and sell products or services. So, you can become a lawyer or an Ad exec in this world and try to run your business as per your whims and fancies.
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Apps That Will Make Life Easier For A Business Person As a business person, you could be experiencing an extremely hectic life. You expect your expensive smart phone to make your life easier and organized. This is where apps come in. Let us look at some apps that can make your life easy.
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Created by Rhythm Software, it is a full featured file manager with a fresh user interface. The functions are extremely user friendly. This is an interesting app for those who hate clutter of files on their mobile phones. The only function still missing is the ability to hide icons. Now you no longer need to connect your phone to your PC to access and clear the mess on your phone.
With more than 30 million professionals over the globe already using the app, CamCard is a must have for a business professional. It is a business card reader and scanner that enables the user to simply scan a card and it will sync all details within no time. It is as simple as point, click and save. Now this is all you need at business gatherings.
PLATFORM: ANDROID & iOS
PLATFORM: ANDROID & iOS
Office Suite Viewer If you are a workaholic and like to work on the move, this app has been created for users just like you. The app enables a user to access word documents, powerpoint presentations, PDF files, Excel sheets and more. The app has received positive responses from several users. It has been developed by Mobile Systems. PLATFORM: ANDROID
Facebook Pages Manager For those working in the digital space, Facebook Pages Manager is a vital app. Enabling you to manage pages with ease. You can carry out all admin functions with this app. So, if you are a social media person or just overtly active on Facebook and wish to manages your pages from anywhere, anytime.. this is the app you need. PLATFORM: ANDROID & iOS
QR Barcode Scanner
Developed by Rhythm Software, the task manager is an important software for a business person to save some battery. You can kill tasks with ease and save your phone some additional usage. Now your phone will not only work better but the battery will also last longer. Say goodbye to phone lag and say hello to a faster smart phone.
With world progressing towards QR codes, a QR code scanner is a must. QR Barcode Scanner allows users to scan, decode, create and share content with ease. So equip yourself with one of these and the next time you spot a barcode, just encode it with ease.
PLATFORM: ANDROID & iOS
Mobile Doc Scanner
BSE NSE National Stock Market
Mobile Doc Scann is a new business tool which can be quiet handy. When somebody makes a demand for a PDF file, you may want to be well - prepared to deliver it. Especially when it is your boss or client who is demanding it. Extremely useful mobile tool, the app gives users the power to transform any file into PDF format and share it right from your device.
For those who are trading in stocks over the stock market, this is an app you must possess. It provides information about latest share prices, mutual funds, nifty futures and options, graphs, expert stock Calls and share market updates share prices, BSE India, NSE India current share price and Live quotes.
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THE GRAND FIGHT FOR HD SMARTPHONES
SAMSUNG GALAXY GRAND vs MICROMAX A116 CANVAS HD Around the same time that Samsung had invited a host of technology folks for the unveiling of their latest offering, the Galaxy Grand – Micromax came up with their own 5” HD smartphone that didn’t cost a bomb. The timing of the launches, plus the fact that Micromax is gunning hard for Samsung’s top position in the Android smartphone market in India, means there’s a delicious marketplace melee in the offing.
Micromax A116 Canvas HD There is no doubt that this smartphone will be one of the fastest selling phones in India. If initial reactions of fans is any indication, Micromax has a solid product in its court.
ProS The A116’s MediaTek MT6589 quad-core processor clocked at 1.2GHz is more than capable of delivering a smooth, lag-free experience. Plus, it runs Android 4.1 Jelly Bean, which has Project Butter at its core. The PowerVR Series5XT GPU is known to be highly efficient and will handle graphics acceleration duties. Another big point in favour of the Micromax handset is the 5-inch IPS display with 1280 x 720 resolution, which means a pixel density of 294ppi. More importantly, the A116 is touted to be sold for under `15,000, which is a fantastic price for the specs.
ConS Looking at the flipside, the Micromax only comes with 4GB onboard storage. Even though it is possible to expand this thanks to the microSD slot, it supports cards only up to 32GB. The front-facing camera of the A116 can shoot only VGA (640 x 480) resolution, when most phones these days have front cams capable of shooting 720p at least. The 2000 mAh battery might not be enough to keep up with the quad-core processor, even though the MediaTek processor uses a 28nm manufacturing process. Another worry is the lack of past updates by the company. Instead, its standard practice is to release a new handset with the latest OS. Possibly the biggest pain point for Micromax and its customers is the lack of good after-sales service. Despite being an established manufacturer in India, this is one of the biggest complaints by past customers.
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Samsung Galaxy Grand
Samsung has a huge fan following and standing among Android phone makers; however, it is still trying to get right the formula for a smartphone with the right set of features at the right price. With the Galaxy Grand, Samsung is trying to do just that
Undoubtedly, Samsung's brand name carries a lot of weight in the smartphone market. Moreover, the company has developed a trustworthy after-sales service network in the country. In this regard, the Korean company is ahead of Micromax. In the Galaxy Grand, it has included some of the TouchWiz features that were launched with the Galaxy S3 and Galaxy Note II. These include the likes of Smart Call, Pop-up Play, Smart Stay, Smart Alert and S-Voice. Samsung has also included India-specific content offerings called My Services. This includes myMovies, myMusic, myMobileTV, myReader and myEducation. The Galaxy grand offers 8GB of onboard storage, but unlike the A116, the microSD card slot supports cards up to 64GB. Its front-facing camera is of the 2 megapixel variety, so you can shoot videos with a 720p resolution.
The biggest complaint about the Samsung handset is the low-resolution display, which tops at 800 x 480, resulting in a low pixel density, 187ppi to be precise. While there is no official word on the processor ticking underneath, one source reports seeing a Galaxy Grand at the Broadcom booth during CES 2013. So one is led to believe that the SoC is the BCM28155, which comprises a pair of ARM Cortex-A9 cores and Broadcomâ€™s own VideoCore-IV graphics engine. This is not the best option out there. Samsung has priced this handset at ` 21,500, which means the price will be a big factor in making the buying decision. Ideally, the handsetâ€™s official price should have been in the ` 16,000 to 17,000 bracket. It remains to be seen how soon market factors will dictate a fall in price.
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Most Addictive Games Of Over the years, apart from being a social networking website allowing users to connect with their friends, Facebook gradually integrated several 3rd party apps and games. This is one of the reasons why Facebook went on to become such a rage. Targeting majorly the youth, these games have become an addiction beyond belief. Users gradually started spending more time playing these games and less time updating their statuses. Not to forget the invitations they send out to invite their friends to play alongside them or simply send across goodies.
texas hold’em poker
Without a doubt the most popular game on Facebook with more than 72 million monthly active users. Farmville takes its users to lead a life that of a farmer. Right from planting crops to grazing animals, this game managed to redefine the online gaming market. With users being asked to return back to the game within few hours to “Harvest” their crops, Zynga managed to acquire maximum re - visits to an within the first couple of months.
With more than 27 million monthly active users, Zynga’s Mafia Wars is by far the second most popular game on Facebook. Although, it is a bit text based when compared to other games, just like Farmville it allows users to live in a alter world, a world of crime. Users turn into mob bosses in this action game and try completing missions and challenges. From earning money to building a huge arsenal of weapons, this game allows users to lead a life of crime, which they obviously cannot in real life.
Taking the betting fascination to a new level via virtual money, Texas Hold’EM Poker by Zynga sold the game to its users by asking them to play one of the most popular car games - Poker. With more than 20 million plus active users, the game was rage in countries where betting was illegal i.e. countries like India. Allowing several friends to play and compete together on a single table, the different modes like Sit N Go and Tournaments ensured that users to completely hooked to this one.
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TO OF IN 2013
If you thought 2012 was a great year for gaming, wait until you see what lies in store this year. From sports to arcade to simulation, this year will once again create a war amongst some of the biggest giants in the gaming industry. Some will be slayed too (kind of expected isnâ€™t it?). The bestselling titles in the year that went by were arguably Max Payne 3, Diablo 3, SSX, UFC Undisputed 3, etc. Now, let us look at what lies in store in 2013. By Malik Sumrani
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Aliens: Colonial Marines Published by Sega, Aliens: Colonial Marines will be a first - person shooter wherein the player dawns the role of a United States Colonial Marine. From flamethrowers to robotic sentry turrets, you can totally go crazy in this one.
Beyond: Two Souls This Playstation 3 game will be a lot different than any other thriller game we have encountered so far. It will aim to provide answers to questions like what happens post death. Salvation maybe? A trip to Heaven or Hell? We don’t know that for sure, yet whatever it is, it sure will be a Spooky adventure.
Carmageddon: Reincarnation A Stainless Steel games creation, Carmageddon: Reincarnation would take the previous versions of the game to a whole new level. With several new maps, cars and more, this game would surely take car wrecking to a whole new level. Maybe, make it look cool too.
Dance Dance Revolution Dance Dance Revolution will bring in that time of the year where you “Shake Those Hips and Point Your Toes”. A creation by Konami Corporation, the game will bring in a new mode called “TAG Play”, which will be similar to the versus mode. So, I guess it’s fair to say “Let’s Dance”.
East vs. West - The Hearts Of Iron Game Put on your hat of strategy and diplomacy for this grand strategy war-game. In East vs. West - The Hearts Of Iron Game, you can take control and manage the cold war era for nearly any country. Take charge of its political, economical or military situation and become a master tactician.
FIFA 14 Arguably, one of the highest selling games for EA Sports each year is its FIFA series. FIFA 13 was too hot to handle for the gamers, so one cannot imagine what FIFA 14 will offer. From Ronaldo to Messi, from Penalties to Free Kicks, this game will bring in a whole new dimension to this team sport.
Grand Theft Auto V Once again Rockstar Games will let you open a can of mean street killings with its latest offering - Grand Theft Auto V. This role - playing action game allows players the freedom to beat some mortals into a pulp, perform adventurous activities like Jet - Skiing and more. Without a doubt, this is one of the most highly awaited games this year.
Injustice: Gods Among Us You know what happens when Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment and DC Comics team up.. It is the return of the Joker, Spider Man, Wonder Woman and more of these superheroes. Injustice: Gods Among Us will be a simple, complication free combat game. Looks like the epic war of Batman vs. Joker awaits gamers.
Killzone: Mercenary Another first - person shooter worth looking forward to this year, Killzone: Mercenary has been developed by Guerrilla Cambridge. For PSP Vita users, this could probably be the finest game in this category. This could just turn out to be the game handheld gamers have been waiting for!
Killzone: Mercenary Another first - person shooter worth looking forward to this year, Killzone: Mercenary has been developed by Guerrilla Cambridge. For PSP Vita users, this could probably be the finest game in this category. This could just turn out to be the game handheld gamers have been waiting for!
Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance Fight against terrorism in this one, as Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance will be another action - adventure game this year. Take charge of Raiden - a cyborg Ninja and unleash some wrath on Desperado Enterprises.
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Naruto Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja Storm 3 A fighting game by CyberConnect2, Naruto Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja Storm 3 will focus on some 80 odd playable characters to compete against each other. it is a sequel to the Ultimate Ninja Storm 2. The game offers the largest cast in the Ultimate Ninja series yet. So if you have been a fan, than this is a must buy.
Professor Layton and the Azran Legacies A game created for Nintendo 3DS, Professor Layton and the Azran Legacies will focus on the travel of the professor and his assistants. Travel with the professor to investigate a “Living Mummy” and go around the world to solve this mystery. The game has several ups and downs, which will keep Nintendo 3DS gamers on the edge of their seats (maybe sleepless too).
Rambo Slyvester Stallone now comes to your gaming consoles this year. Play the role of John Rambo and go crazy with knives and guns in this one. Teyon is developing the game and it includes destructible terrain and rag - doll physics. In the words of John Rambo, “Any of you boys want to shoot, now’s the time.”
Splinter Cell Blacklist Published by Ubisoft, Splinter Cell Blacklist will introduce a new gameplay mechanic called “Killing in Motion”. What’s cool is that it has XBOX Kinect Calibration, so players can now simply scream words to distract enemies before slaughtering them to death. Intense isn’t it?
Tiger Woods PGA Tour 14 One of the best in sports - Golf, Tiger Woods PGA Tour 14 will take golfing to a whole new level. An EA Sports creation, the game will include 20 golf courses as a part of the main game. There would be lots of downloadable content up for grabs too. The game will comprise of 27 golfers including legends like Tiger Woods and Arnold Palmer.
Valhalla Nights 3 A role - playing game for PS VIta, Valhalla Nights 3 will comprise of a 7 on 7 battle mode. What makes it exciting is that each player will have an active and a passive skill. This time around the focus lies more character attitudes. Developed by Marvelous AQL, the game looks very promising in comparison to its previous versions.
The Walking Dead: Survival Instinct Developed by Terminal Reality and published by Activision, The Walking Dead: Survival Instinct is another first person shooting game this year. The game is set around the story of surviving and fighting their way through walkers to reach Atlanta. Its time you either got brave and fought or got smart and just got to your destination sneakily.
XCOM Set in 1962, XCOM is a game about a Federal Bureau of Special Investigation’s Special Agent - William Carter. A first - person shooter, the game promises to test gamers on the lines of tactics and strategy. The game will be released by 2K sports.
Zeno Clash 2
A first - person role playing game being developed by Team ACE, Zeno Clash 2 will be a sequel to its first version. This time around too the players will wage war in a fantasy world. The game will support PC, XBOX 360 and Playstation 3 formats. There is a lot that gamers can expect this year. The year will continue with stiff competition in the role - playing and first - person shooting games category. Simulation will not have too many great releases. As far as action and adventure, Sc - Fi and horror is concerned, the line - up looks decent. Sports as always will witness its regular launches just like every year. So, you could be burning some rubber, punching some holes, fragging some with head - shots or shooting some at the back of the net this year too. There is lots to look forward to!
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GADGET WARS 2.0.13
By Chaitanya Tapase
UNDERSTANDING THE WAR
We’ve all seen how one product from a category is pitted against another, and then a winner is decided based on who performs better or has better functionality. But, what if we compared apples to oranges and let you choose which one really interests you more? Confused? Don’t be! We all know what we want from a gadget. If it’s a smartphone (for example), we know we want it to have a fluid (preferably HD display) touchscreen UI. If it’s a laptop, we want it to be lightweight and have excellent battery life while delivering superb multitasking capabilities. If it’s a full frame DSLR, we want it to have excellent image quality in every light situation, plenty of features, add-ons and superb handling. But, if you had some x amount of money to spend and an open choice to spend on ANY gadget that you wish, would you go for the smartphone directly? Or buy that camera you had always wanted? What really is better to buy when you really need to upgrade all your gadgets but have limited resources? The questions are tough and they will vary for every user out there. What we can do here is, though, provide you with an interesting way of looking at gadgets from different categories pitted against each other. It’s a bumpy ride, so let’s strap in and enjoy it!
WHO TAKES ON WHOM? Sony PS Vita
Samsung Galaxy Note II
Macbook Pro Retina
Transcend StoreJet 35T3
Canon EOS 5D Mark III
Bose 3•2•1 GS Series III DVD Home Entertainment System Google Nexus 7 Epson Moverio BT-100 48 I EXHIBIT I FEBRUARY 2013
Dell XPS 12 Hybrid
A Gaming device against a smartphone?! O yes, why not – and by the way, we are only warming up. The Playstation Vita is a wonderful console for you gaming addicts, but also for the casual gaming lovers. Whereas the Galaxy Note II is so much more than that. But, does that really mean it can out-shine, out-do, and out-with the Playstation Vita?
We shall find out soon.
Sony PS Vita v/s Samsung Galaxy Note II
Value For Money
The Sony PS Vita is compact, sleek and feels just right to be a perfect companion for a lazy day to play games on. But, the Macbook is an Apple product. And in that, the Macbook Pro has no competitor in build quality. It is not only elegant, but also tough. It is not only beautiful to look at, but has the right materials to last a long while. Not that the PS Vita is a slacker, in fact, of all the gaming consoles that we have laid our hands on in the recent while, the PS Vita had to have the best build quality. But can it be compared to the Macbook Pro’s awesomeness? Sadly, no.
How fast can boot these devices boot up? Well, to be fair – compared with each other, they are both almost as quick as each other. And considering the amount of hardware inside both these devices, we expected slightly better performance from the Macbook Pro. But, only because we’ve expected the best from Apple and their products. Bang for buck, the PS Vita seems to deliver just as much goods as the Macbook Pro considering the relative hardware in the two devices. This one’s a tie.
The Playstation Vita costs only about `20K, which is a whole lot cheaper than the 13” Macbook Pro with Retina Display that goes for about `1 lac 15K, for the base model. Easy win for the Vita? Let’s consider ALL the things that you can accomplish with the Macbook Pro and compare it with the Vita. It’s almost unfair right, but look at the value that you really get for the money. If you had the choice which one would you pick, given everything that these gadgets can do? It’s a tough one when you really think about it – but in the end it’s a very individualistic choice.
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A high-performance laptop against a storage device is up next. Apple may be the king of all tech products for the past decade and some, but does that give it a clear edge in every aspect of being the king? With our ever expanding needs for more data, we always will need more space, which a rigid laptop like the Macbook Pro even with its Retina Display cannot provide.
Macbook Pro Retina v/s Transcend StoreJet 35T3
Value For Money
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Whereas the Galaxy Note II does have a slightly plastic look to it, the Transcend can certainly boast of being a better looking device out of the two. But, you have to consider that even though the material used on the Note II might not have been a premium one, it still does look and feel like a premium product. The StoreJet, on the other hand, may not have the best materials in its makeup, but it still looks the part in any setting you put it in. So, to be honest, both these gadgets are quite evenly matched in this department, giving us a tie.
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Now, there hasnâ€™t been a gadget quite like the Samsung Galaxy Note II as far as the performance is concerned. We were quite blown away with the amazing manner in which this phone can out-do any other smartphone on the market. The benchmarks for the Note II are second to none, but the StoreJet is stellar performer itself. In real-life tests, it crossed over 140 MB/s in both sequential read and write operations whereas it gave over 100 MB/s in assorted read transfer. It offered a great cost per GB as well. Call it a tie then? Damn!
The Note II was out for close to 40K when it came out, but has since seen a slight dip in its asking price and is now available for around `38K (approx). Whereas the StoreJet is only for about `6k. Naturally, you can make calls, send messages, keep your social circles updated, surf the internet, watch multimedia, take pictures and do a whole lot of stuff on the Note II. Nothing of this sort can be accomplished on the StoreJet, but it does have a humongous capacity of 2TB. Plus, it should get brownie points for looking like a gaming console rather than a boring storage solution for end-users. Still, if you really had the choice, wouldnâ€™t you pick up the Note II and compromise on storage solutions? Those who are always running out of space will disagree!
The Canon EOS 5D Mark III was one of the most loved and admired cameras of the last year, but does it have everything it takes to take on a budget friendly Blu-Ray player which is perhaps the only one of its kind to convert 2D to 3D on the fly? It’s a rather interesting battle as things are heating up out here!
Canon EOS 5D Mark III v/s Panasonic DMP BDT 220GW
Value For Money
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The Magnesium Alloy body of the Canon 5D Mark III is leading in its class, but the Panasonic is not slacking either. With a stylish metallic finish and glossy looks to boot, the Blu-Ray player from Panasonic looks all set to take on the mighty full-frame DSLR from Canon. But if you HAD to break this tiebreak, you would possibly consider a shelf in your living room with a choice with which gadget you want to be showcased. Unfortunately the plastic looks of the Canon 5D will set it a step back and put the Panasonic Blu-Ray player ahead.
The Canon 5D Mark II was a game-changer when it came out. The Mark III hasn’t been able to match THAT kind of reception, mostly due to its performance, which is certainly better – but not by a whole lot. Whereas, the Panasonic Blu-Ray player is the only one of its kind which can convert 2D to 3D, on the fly. The interface is unique and working around it takes a bit of getting used to the “direction to select” method. Panasonic has also worked on improving the video codec compatibility over the previous generation versions.
One would cost you almost 4 times the amount you’d normally pay for a Tata Nano whereas the other is a mere `12K. The Canon is a very expensive investment, but if used right – it can give you returns like no other gadget in this entire category. You can shoot and sell pictures either online or other avenues as well, but you certainly can’t do anything such with the Panasonic. So, doesn’t that tip the advantage in favour of the Canon? Only if you are willing to shell out so much money initially!
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A 5.1 Home Entertainment system from Bose is up against the might of Google. Well, if you look at it – it is a small 7” tablet, so not really that mighty, but it’s still one of the most admired tablets on the market right now. Plus, it’s manufactured by Asus – one of the most innovative companies of recent times with their amazing Padfone products and many other released over the years as well. So, does that sound music to your ear over the Bose DVD Home Entertainment system?
Bose 3.2.1 GS Series III DVD Home Entertainment System v/s Asus Google Nexus 7 Build Quality
Value For Money
Bose has a really rich tradition of making amazing audio products which have been wowing us and setting the benchmarks for the rest to live up with. But the Bose DVD Home Entertainment system is against the might of Google – in particular the Nexus 7, which has been manufactured by Asus. Both these have really good build quality, without a shadow of a doubt, but the Bose does have a slight advantage here when you again have the choice of displaying only one of these 2 gadgets in your living room.
Even though DVD’s are not quite the weapon of choice for entertainment purposes these days, but the Bose Series III has been a winner of an entertainment system which has been out-shining the competition like it’s a cakewalk for it. But, the Nexus 7 is one of the best 7” tablets in the market right now and can perform as well as any tablet with same specs. But, when you pit them against each other, there is really nothing to pick one over the other. They both deliver the goods without any hints of lags, can power-on from standby in a few seconds and are overall champs of heavy use over months on end. Quite an admirable tie, this one!
Whereas the Bose Home Entertainment System is valued for about `46K, for less than half you can buy yourself the spanking new Google Nexus 7. There is really no comparison to the pristine audio output of the Bose and if you are an entertainment lover, this HAS to be your pick. But, if you want a device which will let you enjoy a bit of everything in nice 7-inch form factor, then the asking price of 20k is really nothing in comparison. Really turns out to be a choice of personalities here, with no clear winner coming out of this battle.
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A personal movie screen product with Android apps installed against a Hybrid Windows 8 notebook?! Yes, why not – they both have the capacities to play multimedia, but the Moverio can’t do much else. Or so you think. It certainly can immerse you in the world of cinema like no other gadget, but can it really out-do a versatile Hybrid notebook from the house of Dell?
Epson Moverio BT-100 v/s Dell XPS 12 Hybrid
Value For Money
The Epson Moverio is an excellent immersive gadget for all the multimedia lovers, one that will give you complete isolation from your surrounding. So if you are living in a rather noisy home or still want complete peace when watching your favourite videos, then there is no better gadget than this. But, waitthe Dell XPS 12 is one of a kind – a Hybrid like no other. It’s a notebook when you want it to be, and a few flips later – it’s a tablet.
Even though the Epson Moverio is highly innovative and excellent fun to play around with, the Dell XPS 12 does have excellent hardware to give superb performance no matter how much you push it. With latest software to compliment the hardware, the user interface is great and the overall feel of the XPS 12 is brilliant. If you are especially the one who love playing with numbers, then this certainly should be your choice, but when you can completely isolate yourself while watching the movie you love, its not always to pick the high-performer.
Another tough one! Even though the Moverio offers a lot less comparatively, it also cots significantly less. Almost half as much as the XPS 12 – which is only 12” big, but costs almost 90k! So, if you want to sacrifice on the size while getting full power and an innovative tablet-cum-notebook kind of device, then the XPS 12 should definitely interest you. But, the innovation of the Moverio cannot be sidelined nor be taken lightly. It really would depend on what you would really prefer in what tickles your fancy before you make a final decision.
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Philips Bows Out Of The Consumer Durable Race A company that featured once on the Forbes list of one of the most admired companies has called it quits. Philips that has presence in more than 60 countries sold its consumer durables (lifestyle) section to Japan based Funai Electric. The Dutch giants were pioneers in supplying and selling radio sets to the world at large.
Why Quit The Race? After having struggled to compete with Asian electronic giants like Samsung, LG, etc, Philips could no longer churn profits or dominate the markets the way it used to once. With reported losses with 311 Million US Dollars, this was the second year in a row where the brand made losses worth hundreds of millions of dollars. For Philips, the business seemed like a lost cause with ever increasing competition, growth and more choosy consumers. “Our consumer lifestyle business was margin dilutive to the group, so it was time to decide to move away from consumer electronics,” said Frans van Houten, Philips’s CEO. “Since we have online entertainment, people do not buy Blu-ray and DVD players anymore.”
Where Are They Headed Now? The deal will be shut by the end of this year and Philips will now focus on its healthcare division. Having generated 40% of its revenue in the last quarter of this division, the Dutch company now plans to focus on the same. Frans van Houten also stated that “With this transaction we are taking another step in reshaping the consumer lifestyle portfolio and transforming Philips into the leading technology company in health and well-being.” The Japanese company Funai Electric apparently have paid 201.8 million dollars apart from the undisclosed brand license fee. Funai CEO Tomonori Hayashi said: “This is truly an exciting time for us at Funai. We will benefit from Philips’ legendary know-how and innovation, as well as the excellent talent they have in place around the world, Additionally, this will give Funai the opportunity to meet our goal of expanding our business into markets including Brazil, Russia, India and China.” After having sold its Television branch last April, we could have probably gauged this move too. Right from being pioneers in lighting and radio equipments to going down due to losses, for Philips Consumer Durables probably made the most out of its collapsing business rather than watch it die slowly.
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RIDE IN STYLE
re you the attention seeker who grabs it all but without being termed a narcissist? Do you want heads to turn for more reasons than one? If the answer to these is a yes with a yes to the additional question of ‘Do you love riding in style?’, then you are on the right page! It is time to ride that uber cool bike of yours to make a style statement and we tell you how. We often wonder what is it about that ‘overhyped’ bike. Well, firstly we all call that bike overhyped and somewhere inside we do know it deserves the extra mileage and stares. Secondly, a bike that is stylish needs a rider who can carry himself and the bike with panache to actually deserve that attention. Excuse my racism against mediocrity but when we do talk about bikes costing more than or even close to what a car costs, we can’t be dealing with excuses to not keep up the style quotient. After all we need to match that price tag. Don’t we? We tell you the kind of bikers that exist in our relatable imagination; for you to know which bike suits you the best!
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`19 lakhs - 23 lakhs
The Celebrity If ‘ooh la la’ is what you crave for, then you are one of those people who can’t do without constant admiration and a centre stage with a spotlight right on your face. You like to wave out to those who are in awe of you and fly in the sky with feet still on the ground. You don’t need to make efforts for this kind of attention when you are strafing left and right under the moon in your HARLEY DAVIDSON VRSCF V-ROD MUSCLE. As the name says this one is brawny and exudes the ‘oomph’ factor beyond what one can actually soak. It is powerful and a stunner all the way. Beauty with brains does exist! You are the intelligent one who smoothly drives through the town on the yellow HARLEY painting the town not red, but green with envy. The filthy rich brat that you are, you want to be no less than a superstar when it comes to style. What kind of an attire would you step on that bike with? Yes you need to be wearing the semi formals; a cool t-shirt paired with dark skinny fit denims and a formal coat! Add those grey suede loafers and whoa! That’s what a star is made of! This look will get your style pulsating as you brush past onlookers, keeping a subtle hint of your pedigree intact. So this suave ensemble provides proof of the breed you come from, the one who has his eyes gazing at perfection all the time. You look intense and with a bike that could kill (with its looks of course!), you become the most talked about bachelor (if you are one!) in town!
The Road Runner
VROOOOOM.. VROOOOOM.. VROOOOM.. If you like that sound and speed is your fetish then you are a road runner! Wearing those track pants and sport suit, you like to show off speed. The hunk that you are, you like to ride around the roads performing stunts. A wheelie here and a side saddle burnout there and you are all full of admirers giving out ‘how-does-he-do-that’ gasps. Dirt biking is a part of your weekly routine and you like to go out with the boys late in the night for those road races. Your bike is your most prized possession and you can’t help but to ride it every time you get a chance; rather you make chances to ride it! The bike you ride is a YAMAHA YZF R1. This sporty bike makes you do what you always wanted to do. Yes you can’t live without it and we do know the reason why. This bike gives you the power and speed without compromising on looks. Rather, looks are its USP! How about addition of a few more hundred fans in your fan club? A pair of wayfarer sunglasses on the super sporty look and you are going to break that record. Get clicked while you stunt your way to meet your girlfriend. We warn you of an army of women that might stalk you down to where you are going. We know you will love that. All you will have to dodge yourself from will be your girlfriend’s jealousy. Ahem ahem..
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Are you one of those who has always loved to play treasure hunt since childhood? Do you get bored of monotony and need to just get away to some other land and maybe return like some three months later? Well, lethargic and adventurous, you love to take it easy in life. What do you ride? Undoubtedly the SUZUKI BOULEVARD C50SE! This bike gives you the luxury to sit comfortable without much stress, making you look like those rowdy and lazy gamblers who play cards endlessly in a club until they win or until they find the need to move their butt. Attention is what you don’t really seek ‘cause you don’t care but still you get it, and too much of it. Riding this one across deserts and grasslands or even intercity could give you the high of your lifetime. And you are the kind who wouldn’t give up this kind of a ride for anything in the world. The warm sun overhead, cool breeze in the face and you are just travelling miles and miles waiting to explore what the next stop will be. Other travellers can’t move their eyes from that beast which you are riding effortlessly. They stare even more since they know you don’t even care they are around. You are lost in your world unaware of the followers you are gaining along the way. Now this kind of a calm personality needs a really carefree look which can be worn for those long distances without having to squint. We have just the perfect ensemble to suggest. The freedom lover that you are, it’s the jodhpuris in denim that will go best with your personality. Along with which you can team up a fitted shirt and a rugged waistcoat! This look will give you some more gazes and admiration. The next stop even if you miss the target at the darts game, we bet you will still be followed out of that door. Just look back and stare at the crowd through a breath taking pair of double shaded sunglasses and we are sure you will hit the bull’s eye, and mind us, not just one!
You look like you are straight out of Billy Bob’s Texas , a cigar sticking out of those lips and yes you are ready to hop on none other than your mechanical horse, the ROYAL ENFIELD CLASSIC 350! That is exactly what you become when you own this bold and beautiful luxury. It looks stunning in its deep colours of maroon and black. Royal, rugged and ready to ride the country, that is what a ROYAL ENFIELD makes you feel. The high front and the low back gives it a vintage yet urban look. The kind of power it gives and the kind of adrenaline rush you feel whilst on it, it definitely is not for the weak hearted (pun intended). Riding this means your job of grabbing the attention is half done. Now it is time to work on the other half of the job. Your look. Time to put on that hat and grow yourself a stubble. Go out in that black vest, blue denims and brown boots to not only grab those eyeballs but also to make those ladies swoon and drool. And don’t forget the dark tinted aviators. It is time to make the women go crazy while you give that ‘catch me if you can’ look back at them. Did we just hear a million hearts breaking? Ouch!
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The Superhero Elegant in the day and rider at night; diligent workaholic in the day and party animal in the night; if that is the dual personality that you swap with ease, you have to be the superhero without a doubt. What do you ride through the day rushing around for important meetings in the mornings and saving a damsel in distress in the evenings? The partner in crime or rather, your partner in action has to be the JK TYRE INDIAN MOTORCYCLE OF THE YEAR, THE KTM 200 DUKE. With the whiff of freedom this bike gives you when you ride, it motivates you to do more. It sees you through thick and thin. Literally! Speeds you through busy roads, races you past the beaches in the nights and doesn’t need to request for attention. It gets plenty of envious looks from those who wish they were you. The fiery orange and the mysterious black that it comes in, fits your personality like a glove fits your fingers! It is all funky yet the black puts a brake on the overtly in-the-eye look. This bike is for a superhero, changing facets yet giving the same power and fashion to you. So when you are riding around on it looking like two different people riding it through the day, we have two types of looks to go with it! An elegant scholarly shirt with a pair of formal trousers and a smooth fringe on your forehead looks perfect in the day to give you that shy mysterious guy look which will attract the most attention from women. Women, as we know, are curious beings and they would love to unravel this innocent, suave and reserved personality that you are. Don’t blame us if you are stalked by the girl next door everyday! For the racy and fun filled early evenings, it is time to swap your personality, spike up your hair into a Mohawk and put on a leather jacket with the corduroy pants! To finish the look, match with a pair of gladiator footwear that give you the rough and ‘oh-so-sexy’ look. You go out wearing these and notice the heads not turn but swing around with a ‘OH-MY-GOSH’ look on those faces. This time when the girl next door is troubled somewhere, it is time for you to show your superhero skills. Hop on to your DUKE and race past the busy streets to rescue her! The awestruck lady might just be found in a hospital the next day, not ‘cause you didn’t save her, but ‘cause ‘YOU’ did!
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Steve Jobs was right – Its a world of Tablets with Laptops only a niche! NPD predicts that 2013 will see the first time that worldwide sales of tablets will surpass sales of laptops. NPD expects 240 million tablets to ship, but only 207 million laptops. That’s just the tip of the iceberg. By 2017, laptops are on track to shrink to just 27% of the mobile PC market. In a market that has been dominated by Apple, shifting market dynamics are creating the opportunity for a greater variety of choices and screens, which will drive shipment growth in 2013 to 64% Y-o-Y (against 2012). In 2013, 7- and 8-inch tablets are expected to ship 108 million units. That’s a whopping 45% of the market. The 9.7-inch screen size of the traditional iPad is set to shrink to only 17% of the market. Undoubtedly, the huge surge in the 7inch devices is thanks to last year’s launch of the iPad Mini. While Apple is still facing stiff competition in the coming years, it will continue to do well in the market thanks to its brand awareness and high-quality ecosystem. North America and China, the top two tablet markets, already saw tablets surpass laptop shipments last year. North America will remain the largest market with a 35% share (85 million units) in 2013. Having passed EMEA in 2012 to become the second-largest market for tablet PC shipments, China will have 27% of the global tablet market in 2013 with shipments of 65 million units, driven by small local brands. As the variety and demand for new screen sizes increases, so will market growth in emerging markets. As countries like China and India continue to modernize while growing their middle class, the demand for tablets
will continue to grow at an amazing rate. The cost-to-utility ratio of tablets is clearly a winning formula for PC companies and consumers alike. Meanwhile, desktops and laptops are continuing their fall to niche status. When the vast majority of everyday tasks are handled on cheap, sleek, and portable devices, the need for a traditional computer peters out for most people. Notebook PC shipments have been slowed by declining demand worldwide, reaching even emerging markets where low penetration rates could have stimulated demand. However, increasing tablet PC adoption is stymieing notebook PC growth. The second half of 2013 may provide a respite as new processors aim to bring more tablet PC-like features, such as instant on, all-day battery life, and sleek form factors, to notebook PCs. If the NPD numbers hold true, we can expect a number of players in the traditional PC market to jump ship, and switch to making tablet and smartphones exclusively in the coming years. The tablet markets saw increasing investments in North America in the second half of 2012, from major brands that tested not only new screen sizes and price points, but also unconventional business models to support their efforts. The subsequent increase in shipments and demand underscored the benefits of segmentation in the market as it drove rapid market expansion. In 2013, further investments are expected worldwide, stoking demand to the point that tablet PC shipments will exceed those of notebook PCs.
X-Stand for Macbooks by Just Mobile Just Mobile came up with an innovative Xstand Pro - mostly aimed at Macbooks, during CES 2013. It’s quite a well made stand, with adjustable height and tilt - which can be easily put together. It’s a decent stand, built from high-quality brushed aluminium with a big ‘X’ shape to remind you you’re on a Mac. It did look a bit on the expensive side, but we are hoping that once it is launched here in India - it will be priced competitively. It offers a choice of two supporting posts to raise your laptop to the height you prefer, with the higher position ideal for use with an external keyboard and the lower operating as a ‘raiser’ to position your MacBook more ergonomically when used on a desk. Even so, there’s not much here to justify the price.
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Participate in the Exciting Contest and grab a chance to Win Logitech MK240 1 ) What is Exhibit Magazine's Tagline? a) Where Tech Meets Lifestyle b) Where Phones Meet Sim Cards c) Where We Meet You d) Where You Read
2) Who was on the cover of the January Issue? a) Chunkey Pandey b) Bill Gates c) Huma Qureshi d) Katrina Kaif
3) Logitech launched new products compatible with which Microsoft operating system? a) Windows XP b) Windows 7 c) Windows 8 d) None of the above
4) Logitech was founded in which year? a) 1980 b) 1981 c) 1984 d) 1991
5) Logitech designs personal peripherals to help people enjoy a better _______________ a) Innovation b) Experience with the digital world c) Experience with their daily lives d) Fun & Experience
To submit your entries, mail your answers at firstname.lastname@example.org Winners will be declared via a lucky draw. The winnerâ€™s name will be announced on our next monthâ€™s issue.
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TECH WORLD’S BIG BAD BOY
De-coding John McAfee 62I EXHIBIT I EXHIBITI FEBRUARY I FEBRUARY2013 2013 62
he world of technology certainly is made up of a lot of colourful characters. But perhaps none are more bizarre and difficult to understand than John MacAfee, the founder of one of the biggest anti-virus software companies in the world. And you want to know why? Because he pretty much created the million dollar anti-virus company on hype, sold it to another mega-rich tech company for billions and then decided to live in an Island country in South America in constant fear of being watched by the corporate world who were trying to steal his biggest and newest idea. Even Hollywood couldn’t think of a story so strange, complex and mind-numbing. Maybe we should try and first understand the man behind the company. Most people don’t really care much about the people behind the companies – as they care about the products. It’s only human. As long as your needs are being met, why would you bother knowing who founded the company, who’s coffee you enjoy every morning? Or of the car you drive to work? So, it came as a shock to a whole lot of people when they started hearing news articles about John McAfee being a suspect narcotics supplier, a pervert who sleeps with underage girls and even a killer. How much of that is true? Well, let’s not get ahead of ourselves now. We really ought to know the man first. In 1986 two brothers in Pakistan coded the first known computer virus aimed at PCs. They weren’t trying to destroy anything; it was simple curiosity. They wanted to see how far their creation would travel, so they included their names, addresses, and telephone numbers in the code of the virus. They named it Brain after their computer services shop in Lahore.
Within a year the phone at the shop was ringing: Brain had infected computers around the world. At the time, McAfee had been sober for four years and gotten a security clearance to work on a classified voice-recognition program at Lockheed in Sunnyvale, California. But then he came across an article in the San Jose Mercury News about the spread of the Pakistani Brain virus in the US.
His success was due in part to his ability to spread his own paranoia, the fear that there was always somebody about to attack. Soon after launching his company, he bought a 27-foot Winnebago, loaded it with computers, and announced that he had formed the first “antivirus paramedic unit.” When he got a call from someone experiencing computer problems in the San Jose area, he drove to the site and searched for “virus residue.” Like a good door-to-door salesman, there was a kernel of truth to his pitch, but he amplified and embellished the facts to sell his product. The RV therefore was not just an RV; it was “the first specially customized unit to wage effective, on-the-spot counterattacks in the virus war.” It was great publicity, executed with drama and sly wit. By the end of 1988, he was on The MacNeil/Lehrer NewsHour telling the country that viruses were causing so much damage, some companies were “near collapse from financial loss.” He underscored the danger with his 1989 book, Computer Viruses, Worms, Data Diddlers, Killer Programs, and Other Threats to Your System. In 1992 McAfee told almost every major news network and newspaper that the recently discovered Michelangelo virus was a huge threat; he believed it could destroy as many as 5 million computers around the world. Sales of his software spiked, but in the end only tens of thousands of infections were reported. Though McAfee was roundly criticized for his proclamation, the criticism worked in his favor, as he explained in an email in 2000 to a computer-security blogger: “My business
increased tenfold in the two months following the stories and six months later our revenues were 50 times greater and we had captured the lion’s share of the anti-virus market.” This ability to infect others with his own paranoia made McAfee a wealthy man. In October 1992 his company debuted on Nasdaq, and his shares were suddenly worth $80 million. McAfee lived in Silicon Valley for nearly 20 years. Outwardly he seemed to lead a traditional life with his second wife, Judy. He was a seasoned businessman whom startups turned to for advice. Stanford Graduate School of Business wrote two case studies highlighting his strategies. He was regularly invited to lecture at the school, and he was awarded an honorary doctorate from his alma mater, Roanoke College. In 2000 he started a yoga institute near his 10,000-square-foot mansion in the Colorado Rockies and wrote four books about spirituality. Even after his marriage fell apart in 2002, he was a respectable citizen who donated computers to schools and took out newspaper ads discouraging drug use. But as he neared retirement age in the late 2000s, he started to feel like he was deluding himself. His properties, cars, and planes had become a burden, and he realized that he didn’t want the traditional rich man’s life anymore. Maintaining so many possessions was a constant distraction; it was time, he felt, to try to live more rustically. He was also hurting financially. The economic collapse in 2008 hit him hard, and he couldn’t afford to maintain his lifestyle. By 2009 he’d auctioned off almost everything he owned, including more than 1,000 acres of land in Hawaii and the private airport he’d built in New Mexico. He was trying in part to deter people from suing him on the assumption that he had deep pockets. He was already facing a suit from a man who had tripped on his property in New Mexico. Another suit alleged that he was responsible for the death
He found the idea terrifying. Nobody knew for sure at the time why these intrusions were occurring. It reminded him of his childhood, when his father would hit him for no reason. As a boy, he wasn’t able to fight back. Now, faced with a new form of attack that was hard to rationalize, he decided to do something. He started McAfee Associates out of his 700-square-foot home in Santa Clara. His business plan: Create an antivirus program and give it away on electronic bulletin boards. McAfee didn’t expect users to pay. His real aim was to get them to think the software was so necessary that they would install it on their computers at work. They did. Within five years, half of the Fortune 100 companies were running it, and they felt compelled to pay a license fee. By 1990, McAfee was making $5 million a year with very little overhead or investment.
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of someone who crashed during a lesson at a flight school McAfee had founded. He figured that if he were out of the country, he’d be less of a target. And he knew that, should he lose a case, it would be harder for the plaintiffs to collect money if he lived overseas.
In early 2008 McAfee started searching for property in the Caribbean. His criteria were pretty basic: He was looking for an Englishspeaking country near the US with beautiful beaches. He quickly came across a villa on Ambergris Caye in Belize. In the early ’90s he had visited the nation of 189,000 people and loved it. (Today the population is around 356,000.) He looked at the property on Google Earth, decided it was perfect, and bought it. The first time he saw it in person was in April 2008, when he moved in. Soon after his arrival, McAfee began to explore the country. He was particularly fascinated by stories of a majestic Mayan city in the jungle and hired a guide to go see it. Boating up a river that snaked into the northern jungle, they stopped at a makeshift dock that jutted from the dense vegetation. McAfee jumped ashore, pushed through the vines, and caught sight of a towering, crumbling temple. Trees had grown up through the ancient buildings, encasing them in roots. Giant stone faces glared out through the foliage, mouths agape. As the men walked up the steps of the temple, the guide described how the Mayans sacrificed their prisoners, sending torrents of blood down the very stairs he and McAfee were now climbing. McAfee was spellbound. Fascinated by the raw side of the lovely islanded and mesmerized by its beauty. So in February 2010 he bought two and a half acres of swampy land along the New River, 10 miles upriver from the Mayan ruins. Over the next year, he spent more than a million dollars filling in the swamp and constructing an array of thatched-roofed bungalows. While his girlfriend, Irwin, stayed on Ambergris Caye, McAfee outfitted the place like Kublai Khan’s sumptuous house of pleasure. He imported ancient Tibetan art and shipped in a baby grand piano even though he had never taken lessons. There was no Internet. At night, when the construction stopped, there was just the sound of the river flowing quietly past. He sat at the piano and played exuberant odes of his own creation. “It was magical,” he says. He didn’t like the idea of getting old, though, so he injected testosterone into his buttocks every other week. He felt that it gave him youthful energy and kept him lean. Plus, he wasn’t looking for a quiet retirement. He started a cigar manufacturing business, a coffee distribution company, and a water taxi service that connected parts of Ambergris Caye. He continued to build more bungalows on his property even though he had no pressing need for them. 64I EXHIBIT I EXHIBITI FEBRUARY I FEBRUARY2013 2013 64 DECEMBER 2012
In 2010 McAfee visited a beachfront resort for lunch and met Allison Adonizio, a 31-year-old microbiologist who was on vacation. In the resort’s dining room, Adonizio explained that she was doing postgrad research at Harvard on how plants combat bacteria. She was particularly interested in plant compounds that appeared to prevent bacteria from causing infections by interfering with the way the microbes communicated. Eventually, Adonizio explained, the work might also lead to an entire new class of antibiotics. McAfee was thrilled by the idea. He had fought
off digital contagions, and now he could fight organic ones. It was perfect. He immediately proposed they start a business to commercialize her research. Within minutes McAfee was talking in rapid-fire bursts about how this would transform the pharmaceutical industry and the entire world. They would save millions of lives and reinvent whole industries. Adonizio was astounded. But the methodical pace of Adonizio’s scientific research couldn’t keep up with McAfee’s enthusiasm, and his attention seemed to
"John McAfee during one of the worst times of his Life"
wander. He began spending more time in Orange Walk, a town of about 13,000 people that was 5 miles from his compound. McAfee described it in an email to friends as “the asshole of the world—dirty, hot, gray, dilapidated.” He liked to walk the town’s poorly paved streets and take pictures of the residents. “I gravitate to the world’s outcasts,” he explained in another email. “Prostitutes, thieves, the handicapped … For some reason I have always been fascinated by these subcultures.” This was the real world he was looking for, in all its horror. The bar girls were given one
Belize dollar for every beer a patron bought them. To increase their earnings, some of the women would chug beers, vomit in the restroom, and return to chug more. One reported drinking 50 beers in one day. McAfee became convinced that he was being watched at all hours. Across the river, he saw people lurking in the forest and would surveil them with binoculars. Adonizio was also worried about McAfee’s behavior. He had initially told her that the area was perfectly safe, but now she was surrounded by armed men. When she went to talk to McAfee in his bungalow, she noticed
garbage bags filled with cash and blister packs of pharmaceuticals, including Viagra. She lived just outside of Carmelita and had never had any problems. If there was any danger, she felt that it was coming from McAfee. George Lovell, CEO of the Ministry of National Security, was also concerned that McAfee was buying guns and hiring guards. “When I see people doing this, my question is, what are you trying to protect?” Lovell says. Marco Vidal, head of the Gang Suppression Unit, concurred. “We got information to suggest that there may have been a meth laboratory at his location,” he wrote in an email. “Given the intelligence on McAfee, there was no scope for making efforts
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to resolve the matter.” He proposed a raid, and his superiors approved it.
convinced, however, that his war on drugs had made him some powerful enemies.
When members of the GSU swept into McAfee’s compound on April 30, 2012, they found no meth. They found no illegal drugs of any kind. They did confiscate 10 weapons and 320 rounds of ammunition. Three of McAfee’s security guards were operating without a security guard license, and charges were filed against them. McAfee was accused of possessing an unlicensed firearm and spent a night in the Queen Street jail, aka the Pisshouse.
He had reason to worry. According to Vidal, McAfee was still a “person of interest,” primarily because the authorities still couldn’t explain what he was up to.
But the next morning, the charges were dropped and McAfee was released. He was
Vidal’s suspicions may not have been far off. Two years after moving to Belize, McAfee began posting dozens of queries on Bluelight. ru, a drug discussion forum. He explained that he had started to experiment with MDPV, a psychoactive stimulant found in bath salts, a class of designer drugs that have effects similar to amphetamines and cocaine. “When I first started doing this I accidently got a few drops
on my fingers while handling a used flask and didn’t sleep for four days,” McAfee posted. “I had visual and auditory hallucinations and the worst paranoia of my life.” McAfee indicated, though, that the heightened sexuality justified the drug’s risks and claimed to have produced 50 pounds of MDPV in 2010. “I have distributed over 3,000 doses exclusively in this country,” he wrote. But neither Emshwiller, Adonizio, nor anyone else I spoke with observed him making the stuff. So how could he have produced 50 pounds without anyone noticing?
So where is John right now? Well, he’s in the small town of Portland, Oregon. But if we could perhaps sum up his life in a few points, then they’d be as follows – •John McAfee, 67, who spent weeks on the run from the Belizean government, arrived in Portland, Oregon •He will spend 18 months in the city collaborating with local artist on graphic novel •Warner Bros. announced it will be making a film about his life based on a Wired Magazine profile. •McAfee arrived in Miami last month after being deported from Guatemala real plan he says was to rely on the rain, which he says worked. •Belize authorities want to question him about killing of a neighbour. It’s hard to feel sympathy for such a man. Yet, there is no doubt he is one heck of en entrepreneur in Silicon Valley for a good 2 decades. We can’t tell you whose side to believe, we can only put the whole picture (as we know it) in front of you – and let you make up your own mind.
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External sources referred to complete the story, compiled by : Ashutosh Mahajan The artilce is edited by : Chaitanya Tapse
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TABLET BUYING GUIDE
Why would you buy a tablet? The tablet is a device that evokes extreme emotions, it seems. Some have chucked the laptop into the naughty corner and adopted the tablet completely. Others are still using both devices, doing some tasks on one and the rest on the other- comfort being the critical keyword. There is a third category of people however, who still havenâ€™t really found the purpose of the tablet in their lives, between the smartphone and the laptop. However, it does work well as a device that does a bit of this and a bit of that- web browsing, multimedia, office work and even gaming. To say that it can replace the laptop solely depends on who is using it, how comfortable he/she is with an all touchscreen environment to work on. To say that the tablet will replace the smartphone is a bit of a raff. Agreed, most tablets have a SIM card slot, but that is only for data usage on the move. Very few tablets offer voice-calling capability. 68 I EXHIBIT I FEBRUARY 2013
There are two sizes being branded about- 7-inches and 10-inches. While the 7-inch category does offer what is quoted (example- the Nexus 7), the 10-inch category seems to have a numbers game happening. The iPad’s have had a 9.7-inch display, while the likes of the Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 have a 10.1-inch display size. While the 7-inch tablet does have a huge advantage in the portability stakes and to a certain extent as far as the weight is concerned, the bigger sibling does offer a slightly better web, multimedia and gaming experience. A larger 10-inch display does give you more room to play with as well as enjoy the content on a bigger screen. It’s ideal for people who love to show off their art-work or have to showcase a lot of presentations to their clients. Gamers would also much rather stick to larger screen estate as it would enable them to fully enjoy the game to the tilt as the developers had intended them to. Artists who love to be creative on-thego, will also be more drawn to large displays which will allow them to be more carefree with their art. No matter what OS and which app they use, a larger display surely has more pros than cons. But, if you are looking to have the tablet experience in a more compact screen size, then the best way to go is for a 7-inch tablet. Especially if you are looking for a better browsing experience than a smartphone on a slightly bigger screen, then the 7-inch tablet brigade is your best bet. Plus, some people do not really want to carry a 10-inch device around with them all day, but a 7-inch one is a lot more comfortable.
á ~ mÇ
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As the saying goes, “the more the merrier” is aptly true for storage space. At the moment, most high-end tablets come with 16GB, 32GB and 64GB options, and that is the maximum available at the moment. Some tablets do not have an expandable memory card slot (microSD etc.), while others do. Lower end tablets may offer just a meager 1GB or so of internal storage, but make up for it via the expandable memory slot. With more HD content than ever before and 4K on its way, the need for storage is always going to increase more and more. As a buyer, you will have to weigh in the options of various tablets with varying in-built space and microSD card support. Because you may be able to increase the external storage by buying a bigger microSD card but the internal storage never increases once you have bought the device. There are also other options for storage like Dropbox and SkyDrive which are being offered by various manufacturers to lure customers in. These are especially useful when you have to access some documents on multiple devices or share some pics with different friend circles or workmates. Also useful for people who are habituated to taking down notes and want all their smart devices to be synced with such notes, or even the monthly expense sheets. You can even upload videos to it, but there is a space limit in these apps. Normally a Dropbox user can expect a max of 25 GB for a limited period, and SkyDrive is around that much too for certain manufacturers.
Another component (like internal storage) which cannot be expanded once you have purchased a tablet, is the RAM. In fact, every internal hardware component is non-upgradable for tablets, as compared to laptops where almost everything can be upgraded. So, as a user – if you want to use multiple apps all the time, then you are better off looking at mid-to-higher end tabs which offer 1GB of RAM or more. There are certain budget tablets that also offer 1GB of RAM, but they always tend to have rather shabbily put together components that cannot fully optimize the hardware with the in-built software. Higher RAM is also recommended for users who want to use their tablet for gaming and viewing HD content, but if your primary use of a tablet is browsing and mails with a little social networking thrown in, then you can pretty much look at the full array of tablets that fit your budget and specific needs.
Closely associated with the processor is the Graphics Processing Unit aka GPU. Certainly a musthave if you want to spend more time playing casual to high-end games as well as for those who love watching HD movies in all their glory. There are various GPU manufacturers in the market, and most tablets have some kind of GPU these days, but you might want to keep your eye on how much memory is the GPU really giving to the overall tablet processing.
Every little activity on a tablet is handled by the processor, and quite simply – the more power it has, the more information and content a tablet can processor. We’ve seen dual-core and quadcore processors explode in the market recently and these can give some of the laptops a run for their money, with their sheer performance. BUT – since none of the tablets are upgradable, you cannot really compare them to laptops, but then again – a tablet is serving different needs to start with.
At the time of writing this article down, we are hearing certain updates from the tech world that we might see EIGHT-CORE CPU’s being launched at MWC 2013 (Mobile World Congress). Now that will really up the ante as far as the hardware race is concerned with every manufacturer trying to out-do the other by providing bigger hardware which will let you do almost any task you do today on a laptop, on a friendly 10-inch tablet. But, till that time, weigh in your options and choose a dual-core if you are a medium-to-heavy app and gaming user and a quad-core if you love gaming more than home cooked food!
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This is the mobile operating system from Apple, and the iPad 4th gen flexes its muscles using this. The tablet version has been tweaked slightly to make better use of the iPad’s bigger display size. There is a two pronged advantage that the iOS holds – extremely slick user experience and a very wide range of applications on the App store. iPad mini has been just as big a hit with users, and the smaller form factor has been lapped up by users all over the world.
While Apple has often been criticized for being a ‘closed’ environment, Android tablets do have the eco-system of range – multiple manufacturers with multiple tablet versions. As an OS, Android 3.0 was made specifically for tablets, and that is an honest attempt to take on the iOS. Some tablet makers are still installing older versions of Android, but these are usually the lower-end devices. Android 4.0 and beyond will be made for both the smartphones and tablets as well, with a keen eye to optimize certain features more for the tablets. This was evident especially in the notification area of the update Android v4.2 (Jelly Bean) which had a slick interface for the notification area at the top – aimed towards tablets.
The new player on the market is already making giant steps to capture the tablet market by storm. But, its still early days for Win 8, nevertheless, the company has made a really good looking interface with a slick UI and excellent optimizations for touchscreen. There are plenty of manufacturers who are already spitting out Windows 8 tablets as well as tablet-laptop hybrids which can be used as either of the two.
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Wireless Connectivity Options This is the mobile operating system from Apple, and the iPad 4th gen flexes its muscles using this. The tablet version has been tweaked slightly to make better use of the iPadâ€™s bigger display size. There is a two pronged advantage that the iOS holds â€“ extremely slick user experience and a very wide range of applications on the App store. iPad mini has been just as big a hit with users, and the smaller form factor has been lapped up by users all over the world.
Tough, dust and water resistant
Then there are a whole lot of manufacturers who are wooing in customers with crazy and cool features like tablets which are really tough, dust and water resistant and a whole lot of shebang! After all, if a dozen tablets in the markets still look alike after careful consideration of the above points, then a buyer would really start losing hair faster than the Indian cricket team loses its wickets on bouncy wickets! Hence, some novelty feature, especially one that would really be helpful (than being just gimmicky) would help a buyer to make his choice that much easily.
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Make a Switch for the better to Tabs
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Phablet P III
In October, Byond launched the Mi book range of tablets powered by Ice Cream Sandwich and Jelly Bean. The Mi book series of tablets will include 178mm(7”), 203mm(8”), 229mm(9”), 254mm(10”) screens and ‘Laplet’ series that will be consisting of a tablet along with a portable keyboard. Some of the key features of the Mi book series of tablets include Android v4.0 .1 (Ice Cream Sandwich) & 4.1.1 Jelly Bean, capability for 3D gaming and high-definition video, kinetic scrolling touchpad, 5-point multi-touch screen, and a high resolution display, the range of smartphones is an impressive lot. The unique features of the smartphones /Android v4.0.1 Ice Cream Sandwich, v4.1.1 Jelly Bean, 1.2 GHz Advanced Processor, qHD, HD IPS & WVGA displays and 6,00,000 plus android applications/ make them stand apart from the rest of the players in the market. All of this may seem like just another company trying to launch products which are already in the market, but when you look at the overall build quality and performance per rupee you spend on these tablets & Smartphones, you will realize their true value.
A tablet that fits nicely in the mid-range market is the Byond mi-book mi8 Tablet. The mi8 presents the impressively smooth and interactive features of the Android v4.0.4 (Ice Cream Sandwich) OS that is backed by 1.2 GHz Dual Core advanced processor, with 1 GB DDR3 RAM to give you speed and 4000 mAh long lasting battery to give you power. Images and video pop right out on the 203mm (8”) ,capacitive 5 point multi-touch screen with 1024 x 768 pixel resolution . The photos you take on the 2 MP camera have optimum resolution and colour and you can use the secondary camera for video chatting. Some other nifty features you will enjoy on this tablet include GPS navigation with voice assistance and high definition 1080p video playback support for 3G calling.
Phablet P II
A well built tablet with a 1.2 GHz Dual-core processor, the Mi7 has 3G calling feature as well, which most of its competitors will not have. The 178mm (7”) form factor is perfect for anyone who wants to have a portable multimedia and communication device, which can be used for a whole lot of purposes- right from media consumption, to image and video editing on the go, enjoying e-books as well as playing games, it has a long lasting 3200 mAh Li-on Battery so that you don’t run out of power when you need it the most. The Android OS 4.0.4 (Ice Cream Sandwich) ensures a smooth and intuitive touch user experience on the capacitive 5 point Multi B63 Touch screen. The tablet ensures you can Byond B63 smartphone store enough data with its 4GB of interfalls into the category of the nal storage as well as expandable budget-price range phones. However, memory up to 32GB. it is power packed with latest features and is no less in comparison to the best brands of smartphones. This is mostly down to the fact that the smartphone has a 1.2 GHz Dual-core processor and the latest version of Android OS – v4.1.1 Jelly Bean Multimedia lovers will be delighted with the fact that the B63 features an 8MP camera with a VGA front camera as well. For connectivity, there is Bluetooth as well as Wi-Fi option available. You can enjoy all of this phone’s amazing 114mm (4.5”) , capacitive 5 point Multi Touch Screen . You can view all things bright and new on this display screen as it has a resolution of qHD 540 x 960 Pixels. It offers compelling new ways of communication and comes packed with sensors such as G-sensor, Proximity Sensor & Light Sensor that ensure you get the best view on the smart phone and can switch between appliPhablet P III cations with ease. Byond Phablet PIII sports a
Mobile phones are getting smarter by the day and are easily crossing boundaries of technical definition. A new breed of devices that slowly bridges the gap between the mobile phone and the tablet is the Phablet. Giving you a much broader spectrum of features and capabilities, the Byond Phablet PII is a great purchase in this emerging market.It is having a 145mm(5.7”) HD IPS Display. With the Android v4.1.1 Jelly Bean OS, navigation is simpler and interactions are more engaging. When this intuitive operating system is backed by the 1 GHz Dual Core Advanced Processor with 1 GB RAM, you can expect impressive speeds. Also featured are an 8MP Autofocus Rear camera with a front camera for video Chatting as well. Plus, with loads of connectivity options like Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, 3G, mini-USB port and 3.5mm audio jack this is perfect for multimedia lovers too.
152mm (6”) FWVGA Display which makes it unique from all the other competitive Brands. 5-point Multi touch screen with a screen resolution of 854 x 480 pixels running on Android OS, 4.1.1 Jelly Bean, it is certainly one of the best phablets around. The Phablet PIII has been powered by a 1GHz Dual-core Processor. Byond Phablet PIII Packs an 8MP rear camera with Flash along with a front camera for Video Chatting . It provides the flexibility to expand its memory up to 32GB. It includes 3G, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, GPS, GPRS and Edge as its features on the connectivity front.
JUST THE BEGINING These are just a few of the phones that have been launched so far and the company has bigger plans in the pipeline. The company will be investing more in this sector as they have understood the gap existing in this sector and are set to fill this void by introducing exciting value-for-money high end products that would cater across segments. On this note, all we have to say is that Byond is a company that will emerge as a strong player in the near future and we are keeping a close eye on the company and its products. 75 I EXHIBIT I FEBRUARY 2013
The Sixth Element Your prayers are answered. Lamborghini is indeed going to make the ravishingly sensational Sesto Elemento.
few months back, at the Paris Motor Show, Lamborghini CEO Stephan Winkelmann announced that the company will continue to make one-offs like the jaw-dropping Aventador J and limited production acts like the Sesto Elemento. Marking the beginning of their plan to make truly exotic and highly exclusive super cars for select customers, the Italian car maker has started the production of the Sesto Elemento.
The Sesto Elemento is perhaps the most athletic-looking car in the Lamborghini range and the most futuristic of them all. No offense intended, Reventon. Among the likes of the massive Aventador and the recently demised Murcielago, the Sesto Elemento looks chiselled and trimmed. If those two are Sly and Arnie, and the Gallardo is Jason Statham, this tough guy is Bruce Lee with the magnetic charm of Brad Pitt – slick, sharp, crisp and lethal. Its name is a reference to the abundance of carbon fiber which has been used to build the car and it does sound mighty impressive. Sesto Elemento is a name which would blend in seamlessly to the lore of a fantasy world or of a sci-fi novel with elan and the car which bears the title is a mix of both. Unveiled for the first time at the 2010 Paris Motor Show as a concept, the Sesto Elemento was not just a car which was noted for being
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styled with magnificence. It was also at the centre of the spotlight for being capable to deliver mind-blowing performance. But Lamborghini kept their lips sealed regarding the production plans till the 2011 Frankfurt Motor Show where they announced a production run of 20 cars. No, they didn’t ask the potential buyers to slay a bull in the arena to be worthy enough for one of these. Whether or not they did something like that is yet to be known. Truth to be told, we are quite sure that all 20 units have been sold out by now. Examining the spec sheet is as drool-inducing as the sensational styling of the Sesto Elemento. Its drivetrain is from a Gallardo LP 570-4 Superleggera which means the art on wheels gets a 5.2-liter V10 engine which powers all four wheels via a six-speed automated manual transmission. Power? 562 horsepower which is more than what you ever wanted and with 398 pound-feet of torque you’ll never feel the need for more. There is one more reason which makes this car better than the Gallardo on which it is based. It may have the same engine specs as the donor car. But being lighter grants it with a better power-to-weightratio which is always bound to bring amazing results. For the Sesto Elemento that translates to 0-92kph time of less than 2.5 seconds and a top speed of 320kph. The car has been stiffened and the safety features have been improved to withstand the pressure on the
chassis and to protect the driver if things get ugly and get out of hand. We doubt how many will dare to push such a rare car to its limits. This one belongs in a museum, dad. However, there is a catch. There is always one, isn’t it? The Sesto Elemento is limited to track use. Lamborghini’s insistence to stick to the concept car’s styling and design makes it impossible for the Sesto Elemento to meet all the regulation which a road car has to meet. So that makes the sixth element not-so-street legal as you wish or want it to be. But that won’t be problem for someone who can shell out top dollars for a car which is quite rare and pricey at the same time. If you can afford a Sesto Elemento, you can afford a racetrack or to be more practical, a Track Day Club membership. That brings us to the price. Considering the low-volume production plan, Lamborghini will be turning to its pre-production and prototyping center for building this car. Each car will be priced at a heartbreaking $2.6 million which makes the Sesto Elemento even more far beyond the reach of many of us. Even if a couple of us do own an oil rig and a private jet with shower rooms finished in pure gold. Now join us in continuing to drool over the pictures. - Sanjoy Alexander
To Music With Love
The Jabra Solemate `10,990/-
With only the increase and decrease volume buttons separated by the voice guidance button, the top panel is fairly clean and nice looking.
Specifications First Impressions
Jabra has veered from its tradition of making hands-free Bluetooth devices, to actually make a mobile speaker system. It’s compact, and it’s got Bluetooth as well. On paper, it looks good as any mobile speaker that we’ve encountered in the recent months, but does it have the goods that will manage to impress audiophiles and/or the casual listener? Let the soul decide if the music it renders is good enough to make it a permanent mate.
We were ecstatic to receive the white unit for review, as it does look the classier of the two (the other option being a black unit) and a bit Apple-like. The packing is top-notch, though the method to actually open the plastic casing took some dexterity on our part. Nevertheless, the set-up is as easy as it gets – if you have a Bluetooth device you wish to pair with the Solemate, (with Voice Guidance) all you need to do is push the power button up to the Bluetooth indicator and let the devices pair automatically. Once that’s done, you can simply stream your own music wirelessly within the Bluetooth range to the speakers and the performance of the Solemate was really good. The low’s and mid’s are well distinguished, but the highs do struggle to get the best output due to the small form factor. Lengthwise it’s almost the size of an iPad mini and height-wise as big as a grown man’s thumb!
The body bears a grille-speaker look overall barring the side panels, and the sole is where the fun is – because it quite literally is a sole. A shoe sole design replication which has the rubbery material to keep it in place even if you are going over-board with high volume rock songs on it. It worked really well in our testing and it also houses the 3.5mm pin connectors to connect via audio jacks in case you don’t have a Bluetooth enabled device (Like an old desktop, laptop or smartphone). Of course, the disadvantage in listening whilst being paired with your smartphone is receiving calls/ sms’ means an interruption, that you could’ve otherwise done without. But that’s an issue with every Bluetooth speaker, so you can either switch to Airplane mode, or make-do with some interruptions every now and then.
Single Mobile Speaker system 3 front speakers Sweat, Splash and Dust Resistant Bluetooth, 3.5mm Audio cable and USB connectivity 610 gms weight
For an asking price of about `11k, this is a classy Bluetooth speaker set with nice touches like voice guidance and status displays, which is also sweat, splash and dust proof. With 2 acoustic tweeters and 1 subwoofer, the performance is really top notch and build quality is superb. If you are looking for a music companion which can work seamlessly over Bluetooth, then the Solemate is one of the best in the market right now.
Reviewed By: Chaitanya Tapase
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Full HD In 5 Inches Only The HTC Butterfly `44,000/- (approx)
Specifications 5” Full HD Super LCD 3 Display 1.5 Ghz Snapdragon S4 quad-core processor 2GB of RAM, Adreno 320 GPU Android v4.1 Jelly Bean (upgradable to v4.2) Sense UI 4+ 8MP with Full HD video recording 16GB internal, microSD support up to 32GB 140gms, 2020 mAh Li-Polymer battery
Amidst the rumours that some smartphone makers were contemplating coming up with a 1080p display, HTC came out with their HTC J Butterfly for Japan, Droid DNA for the US and simply ‘Butterfly’ for the Indian market. We had the chance to review the exclusive unit before anyone else could and we can easily say it’s a beautiful display that will impress any and every kind of user. But will it also impress us enough to pick it over similarly loaded smartphones? We’ll see.
Beautifully build, awesomely powered and intelligently designed. That’s the everlasting feeling you are left with after fully testing this Snapdragon S4 quad-core ‘superphone’ with a Full HD resolution of 1920x1080 in just a 5inch form factor. With 2GB of RAM it easily should be the best in class with its benchmark scores, and almost is – tying out with the LG Optimus G in some, but that phone never released in India and perhaps never will. The overall performance is enhanced with Adreno 320 GPU, which means playing videos in 1080p or the most graphic intensive games is a breeze. Because of the amazing display, everything just looks spectacular – almost like a dream. And though the 5” form factor has a slightly longer length compared to the breadth (almost iPhone 5-esque), it does not suffer any
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of the display issues that the iPhone 5 did, as the 1080p resolution is a standard one. Multimedia is enhanced because of the Beats Audio integration, plus there is 25GB of additional storage space via Dropbox to compliment the internal 16GB. The microSD card will support up to 32 GB, making space a non-issue. With Android 4.1 Jelly Bean available straight out of the box (upgradable to v4.2) with Sense UI on top, the user experience is smooth, fun and quite intuitive. Extended use, especially graphic-intensive use, heats up the battery a bit. But the same issue we have encountered with every major smartphone with pumpedup specs. On the negative, the micro-USB slot feels a bit fiddly to open and the micro-SIM slot too isn’t the best. The nice grip-assuring material at the back ensures the phone never slips out and the excellent finishing overall lends it a distinguished look.
The 8MP snapper is rather good, perhaps the best camera on a HTC device. The UI is the same that we saw on the One X+, and the front 2.1MP cam has 1080p video capabilities just like the primary cam.
The HTC Butterfly has got a Full HD display before all major smartphone makers, but the gadget is not resting on those laurels only. It performs brilliantly, has excellent Google integration and the Sense UI is pleasantly easy to use and customize. With a plethora of connectivity options to boot, as well as a fairly good battery life, the Butterfly should be high in everyone’s shopping lift, if they can afford the approx `44k price tag.
The 8MP snapper is rather good, perhaps the best camera on a HTC device. The UI is the same that we saw on the One X+, and the front 2.1MP cam has 1080p video capabilities just like the primary cam.
EXHIBIT RATING Reviewed By: Chaitanya Tapase
The Stylish Shooter Specifications 12MP EXR-CMOS Sensor F/1.8 – F/4.9 (25mm-100mm equivalent 35mm format) 4X Optical and 8X intelligent digital zoom 3” 460K dot LCD monitor Mechanical zoom ring for turn-off and zoom ring Full HD Video Recording
Another Fujifilm camera based on the X10 formula?! Well, before you get your nails out and scratch off the XF1, let us tell you it looks and feels quite unlike any of the other X series cameras from Fujifilm. That may or not be a good thing, but the synthetic leather with the top notch aluminium used make it quite a stylish shooter. One that you won’t be ashamed to carry around even in the classiest soiree’s in town. But does it deliver the goods with its 2/3-inch EXR-CMOS sensor and 4X optical (25mm – 100 mm) lens with a max of f/1.8 of aperture?
Besides the excellent build, classy looks and great materials – the XF 1 does have a good grip to hold it to go shooting around streets. It’s quite light weight and all the dials and buttons are where you’d expect them to be. Except of course, the way you actually turn on the camera. You have to pull the lens out and twist it to the 25mm position, and then you can be on your way. It’s quite clever, but the downside is always remembering to not zoom out completely lest you mistakenly shut down the cam while in the middle of shooting. You also have to remember that the camera goes to standby if you don’t touch it for a while and is not completely shut down, but the good thing is – since the lens is always open, most users will surely at least the lens is completely closed. The FUJINON lens itself is quite wide
at f/1.8 and takes really good images with creamy bokeh effects and performs really well in low light too. With full control on shutter speed and aperture, enthusiasts will be quite happy to use this, especially considering this is essentially a premium compact camera without an interchangeable lens. Colour reproduction is very natural, contrast ratios are good, and there is hardly any vignetting and aliasing is not a big issue either. At full zoom there is slight softening of colours (esp in low light), but there is no blurring and even 100% cropped images are useable. Even at ISO’s as high as 6400.
Fujifilm XF 1 `33,989/-
Almost 39k for a well dressed gentleman’s camera? If you’re looking for style more than function then this is certainly the camera for you. With an excellent UI, great usability and pretty good auto focus speed, the XF 1 is a good performer. No viewfinder and limited range of aperture on the new FUJINON lens might not be ideal for everyone.
The XF 1 also has the ability to capture RAW images that can easily be processed with the tools provided on the CD available in the box. There is also a quirky ‘3D’ mode that saves files in a proprietary .MPO file format. There are also fun modes including 6 “Advanced filters” with 11 patterns and 5 “Film simulation modes” to while your time away.
Full HD video recording with stereo sound and ability to take photos while filming is quite the standard these days. But the quality of the videos is quite good and manual zoom allows you to have full control over the focal length.
Reviewed By: Chaitanya Tapase
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Zooming In To Goodness
The Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ200 `34,990/- (approx)
Specifications 12.1 MP MOS Sensor 24x Optical Zoom, 4x Digital Zoom 4.5 – 108 mm Focal length f/2.8-8 Aperture range Full HD Video Recording SD, SDHC, SDXC compatible
Every bridge camera looks and feels like an entry level DSLR, but most have that excellent zooming power that the entry level DSLR will not. So, here we are with the Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ200 with a 12.1 MOS Sensor and 24x Optical Zoom. It’s got the right idea behind it, with great specs that look the part on paper. But, does it shine through if you put it through the paces, or does it falter anywhere? Let’s click and find out!
The DMC-FZ200 fits quite nicely in your hand and is rather well built for any type of photography that you may want to push it for. It’s got enough features to keep photography enthusiasts interested, but it basically feels and operates like a point-and-shoot camera. That’s the whole idea for bridge camera’s, but not all of them have been bang for your buck. At almost Rs 35K, you don’t get interchangeable lenses, but the Panasonic Leica lens is fairly good having Power O.I.S. and good auto-focus capabilities. There are enough modes to keep beginners happy as well, like preset settings for various kind of lighting scenarios and such. But, it is the control over aperture, shutter speed and ISO level, which will leave the enthusiast photographer content as well. But here’s the best part—the maximum aperture at the wide and telephoto ends in the FZ150 are f/2.8 and f/5.6 respectively. Quite respectable, but the optics in the FZ200 is capable of
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maintaining f/2.8 throughout the zoom range. This means that even at 600 mm, you can go as low as f/2.8. This is the most significant upgrade over the FZ150 and is also the USP of the FZ200. The performance is really good, plus you have the option to shoot in RAW as well. But, writing those files on the card takes a fairly long time, plus the zoom controller on the lens itself was a bit too sensitive for our taste. But, at every other test and almost all across the ISO range, the pictures were really good. Video was great too, but stabilization could’ve been a bit better.
This is a really good camera, but at `34K, you also have the option to consider the Sony RX100. For a smaller frame and a better contrast quality, you can switch over to it, but the Lumix does have slightly more customizable options. If that’s what you want, then by all means go for the DMCFZ200, else it would be a lot smarter decision to go for the RX100 from Sony.
Filled with 460k dot on a 3” LCD panel, the screen can be pulled out and twisted around as well. It’s great for self photography as well as getting pics from weird angles. The EVF has diopter control as well, and has good amounts of info to shoot independently from the LCD screen.
The cam can capture 120 fps (in NTSC) and 100 fps (PAL) at 720p, which lets you create nice slow motion video in HD quality.
Reviewed By: Chaitanya Tapase
Pretty In White
iBall Andi 4.5H `12,490/-
Specifications 4.5” qHD IPS display Android v4.0 ICS 1 GHz Cortex A9 dual-core processor 1GB RAM 8MP cam with flash 4GB internal storage, microSD card support
The I’m Watch is nothing but a fancy gadget but offers very little functionality. Only swanky in looks, the watch fails to impress when it comes to serving the purpose for which one may purchase it. Priced at above `20,000, there are several products out there that can replace this one at such a high budget. Overall, one can let this one pass.
Kareena Kapoor might be endorsing this particular phone, but it might take a bit more for people to really drool over it and make them buy it immediately. It does look ‘inspired’ by the iPhone design somewhat, but that doesn’t take away from the fact that it is a nice looking phone which seems to have a decent enough build quality. So, will the 4.5” form factor with qHD resolution coupled with a dual-core processor and 1GB of RAM be good enough to win hearts?
Even though we didn’t quite like the plastic quality of the build in this phone, it did feel rather nice in the hand to hold and operate. It’s not the best of grips, but the plastic-ness is kept under control and some observers were even fooled into thinking we were using the iPhone rather than the iBall Andi. The handset is all glossy white with silver lines covering
part of the top and bottom side. There are 3 touch sensitive back-lit buttons on front side. The power and 3.5mm jack is present on the top, volume rockers on the left and Micro USB port on the bottom. Running on the slightly old Android 4.0 OS is a bit of a downer, though hardware-wise it’s a pretty picture with its MT6577 dual core processor clocked at 1GHz coupled with PowerVR SGX 531 GPU. The RAM is 1GB and internal storage is 4GB. Performance was nice and smooth as proven by our benchmark testing results, which actually put it on par with the Samsung Galaxy Nexus. Gaming and multimedia was fairly good too, the phone managed to play 720p videos without hiccups and most highend games ran smoothly. Google integration is spot-on as expected and the overall Android experience is pure stock, without any customizations from iBall themselves. Call quality, browsing over 3G and wi-fi as well as video-calling over some apps was quite good overall, again matching the performance of
the phones in the same category we mentioned earlier.
The handset comes with a front VGA camera with native video calling support and a rear camera of 8MP resolution with Auto Focus and LED flash. The camera performance is near about the same as we have seen on the Micromax A110, Micromax A90s, Karbonn A30 and other handsets. The camera can also record videos in 720p resolution with infinity focus or continuous auto focus.
Reviewed By: Chaitanya Tapase
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Wireless Comforts For Yuppies
The JayBird BlueBuds X India: TBD USA: $169.95
Specifications In-Ear bud Bluetooth earphones 16 ohms impedance 6 mm driver size Answer/End Call,Mute,Next Track,Pause,Play,Previous Track,Volume – Inline controls Intangible cable
As with all in-ear headphones, these won’t fit everyone equally well. Some people will get an even better fit than we did, some a worse one. For those who get a perfect fit and are looking for small, lightweight wireless sports earbuds that sound quite decent, they may be. But we think the price is a little steep. They ultimately don’t look and feel like premium Bluetooth earphones, even if they sound like them.
JayBird Gear’s BlueBuds X are the company’s top-of-the-line Bluetooth wireless in-ear headphone model, and they’re one of the better pairs of wireless sports headphones we’ve used. Outstanding? Well, that depends on how good a fit you get, but we have no doubt that the folks who do get a great fit will rate these very highly. Or at least it does appear like that by looking at the nice build and excellent spec sheet. But do they suck or are they awesome?
What’s impressive about the BlueBuds is how small and lightweight they are in comparison with other Bluetooth in-ear headphones. They share some similarities with the compact Plantronics BackBeat Go earphones, which cost less than 5K and have the same tangle-resistant flat-cord design with an integrated remote/microphone. However, the Plantron-
ics’ battery life isn’t as good as the Jaybirds’ and they aren’t sweatproof (Jaybird offers a lifetime warranty for any sweat-related issues the earphones may encounter). You can go with an over-the-ear fitting and then shorten the cord length so the cord ends up resting very close to the back of your head. You can also just let the cord dangle down from your ear as you would with typical wired earphones. You can choose to have the cord sit in front of your neck or behind it (most people will wear the cord behind their necks). This setup is better if you plan on making calls because the microphone sits closer to your mouth, rather than on the back of your head just behind your ear. We thought the BlueBuds sounded very good for Bluetooth headphones. You lose a little something with Bluetooth because you’re dealing with compressed music, but the BlueBuds sound pretty dynamic. They also sound fairly open with good detail and decent bass. Though on most rock and techno
based songs, the bass wasn’t that great. The Bluetooth connection too, suffered a bit when we had our smartphone in our jeans pockets and the BlueBuds in our ear and roaming in and out of buildings or while riding. Jaybird says you’ll get up to 8 hours of battery life, but your mileage may vary depending on how loud you play your music. At a more moderate listening level I was able to hit the 8 hours.
Reviewed By: Chaitanya Tapase
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Good Looks But Deceiving Features
Meet the World’s First Real Smartwatch - I’m Watch `21,490/-
Specifications First Impressions
The first thing that you would feel when you hold the watch is that it isn’t heavy in weight. Although, bulky in appearance, the I’m Watch is an exceptional looking gadget. The product’s appearance are probably one of its best aspects. The wide strap makes the dial look extremely stylish. The Italian company has done a fine job in designing the interface and adding several pre - loaded apps to it. This brings a whole new element of fun to the product. The watch appears “Huge” on someone with a petite wrist, for those blessed with a broader wrist, the watch appears like a gadget straight out of an Hollywood flick.
The appearance is the first thing you will take notice of and without a doubt it will impress you. Coming down to the features of the watch, the aspects like the drop down notification bar make all its functions seem neat. The pre - loaded apps like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc work smoothly. Thus, this is a lot more than a watch. We experienced no glitches in listening to music, viewing images or accessing any other in - built feature of the phone.
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Now let’s talk about the purpose why one would purchase this watch - functionality. When it comes to calls, our voice could be transmitted clearly but we faced a lot of hindrance in receiving it. Firstly, it appears as if you are communicating over a walkie talkie. The speakers on the watch are not that effective. Secondly, there is ample disturbance (break in voice) when talking and this can become very irritating. There is only one key on the right side of the watch for all functions (accessing menus, going back, etc). It is hard to believe that the makers did not feel the need to add dedicated volume keys to the watch. There is a 3.5 mm jack that allows charging, data transfer and hands - free connectivity. When we attempted to use the calling feature via the hands - free, it still managed to disappoint us.
RAM 128 MB Storage 4GB 1.54” TFT color display 240x240 resolution 220 ppi Magnetometer Accelerometer
The I’m Watch is nothing but a fancy gadget but offers very little functionality. Only swanky in looks, the watch fails to impress when it comes to serving the purpose for which one may purchase it. Priced at above `20,000, there are several products out there that can replace this one at such a high budget. Overall, one can let this one pass.
Reviewed By: Malik Sumrani
FITS SNUGLY ON YOUR HEAD
The Audio Technica ATH-WS55 `4,299/- (approx)
Specifications Binaural Headphones, Earcup form factor Adjustable headband, dual chamber mechanism 10-24Khz Frequency Response Right angled gold plated audio plug 100 dB/mW sensitivity
Headphones with quality builds, great performance and good value for money are hard to find these days. But, there are some international players making their way to our shores in the recent months. One of these is Audio Technica and we tested out the ATH-WS55 mid-to-high range headphones to see how they fare. They look good on paper and the first time we held them, they appeared to be really street smart. But do they also give the bang for your buck?
When you hold the WS55 headphones, they feel quite light and extremely well made. Nothing about the build quality looks tacky or cheap, it’s premium all the way. So naturally, you start expecting the same from the performance as well. But, once you put these headphones on, you start feeling the tight grip which is meant to keep zero gap once you put these on. Unfortunately, they feel a bit too tight for comfort, and the spring body feels like it is trying to strangle your head, at times. Okay maybe we were exaggerating a bit, but a nicer comfort level never hurt anyone. The
earcups are nicely padded with rubber finish material, but felt a bit small. They swivel and fold flat too, which makes it a tad easier to carry them around. The dual-cord design has excellent materials used as well but has a right angled audio jack, which might seem like an odd choice for some of you, but is certainly not a deal breaker. Let’s talk performance now, shall we. Overall the WS55 is pretty impressive with loud, clear and pleasing audio output. The bass is deep too, but not Beats Audio level deep. At higher volumes, the headphones struggles to distinguish between the highs and mids, but still maintains a good level of clarity. The quirky bit was getting some tick noise every time you move your head, when the components brushed against each other or your head. Anyhow, the performance level was quite enjoyable, even though it’s not quite the best in its class, its still pretty close.
Barring the comfort level, the Audio Technica WS55 was a really good headphone. Whether it be for music, gaming, movies or even simply for podcasts – its clarity is good, though the high volume performance is a bit of a let down. If you prefer build quality over total performance, then this is surely the headphone for you.
There is really nothing extra in terms of features, there is no mic nor any remote. The package is as simple as it gets, but it gives you what you were looking for. Almost.
Reviewed By: Chaitanya Tapase
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A Small Device Making a Big Impression JBL Flip `5,990/-
Specifications 2 x 1-1/2” (38mm) Transducers 2 x 5W Amplifier power 150Hz – 20kHz Frequency response Li-ion Battery Bluetooth Connectivity Listening time on battery - 5 Hours Battery charge time - 3 Hours Dimensions (W x H x D) - 2-7/16” x 6-5/16” (63mm x 160mm)
When we first saw the JBL Flip we were surprised by its size. Having witnessed several other portable speakers, this truly looked sleek, elite and petite. The Black and Grey (better than then silver and grey) look of the speakers with the trademark JBL logo give an elite appearance to the speaker. Extremely light - weight, the speaker is almost the size of a Beer Can. What we liked at the first go is that one can place the speaker horizontally and vertically. A rarity in the portable speaker segment.
Let us look at the real deal about this speaker. When we first connected our phone to the speaker via Bluetooth, it functioned effortlessly. The speaker connected instantly without any glitches. The sound quality of the speaker is nothing short of amazing. The high - performance drivers live up to the expectations of the speaker. There are two 1-5/8-inch (40mm) drivers, a built-in bass port and an acoustic volume of 200cc, the JBL Flip delivers legendary JBL sound with exceptional bass – all in a portable stereo speaker that travels easily with you. The battery life of the product is 5 - hours in play. The built - in rechargeable Li - on battery delivers high performance. The sound quality of the speakers within a closed room (we tested this with the four walls of our office) was good enough to get some hips shaking. When outside (in a car, windows down) it still offered decent performance. When in traffic, it faces
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a volume barrier. What JBL does right here, better than other brands that it is aware about the limitations of this kind of technology and thus does not offer a volume level that could result in quality loss. Connectivity wise the speakers face a bit of a hindrance. But, that is a drawback in most Bluetooth speakers. When stationary , the speakers function effortlessly. When constantly in motion, the speaker experiences scattered connection. Not only over Bluetooth, the speakers function perfectly when connected via a auxiliary cord too. The speaker has an embedded microphone too. This too did not disappoint us in any way and we could easily communicate over the phone. The sound was crystal clear and the person on the opposite side faced no hindrance too.
For the price that it is available at, this is truly a marvellous product. Obviously, still a luxury but for those who are looking for a portable loudspeaker, JBL FLIP should be amongst the top preferred ones. If you are looking for speakers that can not only help you host a small party but also accompany while you drive, JBL FLIP is one of the best in the market currently.
The side panel includes the power button, volume increase and decrease keys and the call answering button. The curved look gives it a very elite appearance.
The sleek and compact size of the speakers is without a doubt its best feature. It fits in your hand with ease. The metallic design makes it look extremely elite and separates it from the others in the market. The best part is that it has been designed in a way in which you can place it like a bottle and experience great sound output.
EXHIBIT RATING Reviewed By: Malik Sumrani
The Clever Convertible
Dell XPS 12 Ultrabook `Rs 94,900/-
Specifications 12.5” Full HD LED 2.6 Ghz Intel Core i5 CPU 4GB DDR3 RAM 128GB SSD 1.3MP Built-in Webcam 1.54 Kgs
Sleek, sexy and hardcore. Those are the only three words that came to my mind when I saw this 12 inch piece of heaven. Dell has never failed to impress me with their laptops and desktops, and when I found out about the XPS convertible, I couldn’t wait to get my hands on it. Packed with everything required to make it an exceptional ultrabook, does it live up to its asking price of `94k? Read on.
A Windows 8 pc that can be used as a tablet as well. In the following months there will be too many to count on our fingers, so what sets this apart? To start off, the look and feel of this Dell certainly makes you feel like royalty. Its screen flips inside its hinges and each time you turn it, it’ll rest with this comfortable clicking sound that will give you a great deal of confidence in its build. The keys are well spaced, leaving you with a comfortable and soft space to rest your palms as you type away! This XPS certainly feels heavy at 1.54 kilos for a 12.5 inch laptop, although this won’t be an issue when you carry it around. However, it starts to get annoying if you use it in the tablet mode for long stretches – too large and rigid,
unless of course you are comfortably seated with excellent leg and back support. As you look around the edges you will find a modest collection of ports – two USB 3.0 sockets, a Mini DisplayPort, a 3.5mm headphone jack and dual speakers. The only thing missing is an SD Card Reader, which would have been a useful addition, since it would be a whole lot easier to copy data from your memory card. As far as the trackpad was concerned, I felt like it had a mind of its own. Would be excessively stubborn when it came to using the cursor for simple clicking or dragging. Although the trackpad is equipped with several Windows 8 gestures, which makes it pleasant when using two fingers, it left me extremely disappointed with its cursor navigation. The XPS is packed with an amazing display of 176 pixels per inch which gives you a 1080p resolution that literally kicks ass. The Gorilla Glass coating makes it durable enough to be used in the tablet mode. Even though there are certain limitations with the audio department, I was extremely impressed by how loud it could get, without too much distortion at the highest volume. The camera wasn’t as clear or crisp as I expected it to be, seeing how its fantastic display set my expectations all the way to the
penthouse. Another amazing thing about the XPS is its booting time – 10 – 12 seconds flat. Unfortunately, the battery drains out really quickly – maybe 5 hours tops? In standard conditions.
The XPS 12 is a compelling option if you are looking for a high end touch enabled ultrabook. Its industrial design, comfortable keyboard, gorgeous 1080p screen and a super fast booting time definitely sets it apart. The biggest drawback is the crumbling trackpad and truncated battery life, but everything else is still superb in comparison and pretty much makes up for the latter. We’ll have to see how the other ultrabooks fare, but for the meantime the XPS 12 seems like a fantastic start!
EXHIBIT RATING Reviewed By: Chaitanya Tapase
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A 3-in-1 Solution For You Here’s The Asus PadFone `64,999/-
Specifications First Impressions
Almost a year after it was released worldwide, Asus decided to finally launch the PaFone in India. The timing could not have felt more strange, as the PadFone 2 was already out worldwide and in a month of PadFone being out in India, the sequel came swaying in. Anyhow, the idea of having a single 3-in-1 device to save space as well as confusion of syncing data is rather unique and sounds intriguing. Plus, it’s from Asus – a company that has given us rather nice notebook and computing peripherals in the past. So is the PadFone going to be just as great?
The actual PadFone was the first device we picked out to test and immediately were very happy with the display and build quality of the phone. The shiny metal finish with the grooved back panel gives you a good grip, but if you play high-end games for a while then heating will literally make you keep the phone down for a while till it cools off. Connectivity options are the standard fare you’d expect from an Android ICS device, and browsing experience is really good but calling is a bit annoying because the screen does not stay in complete lock mode and all our calls went mistakenly on hold at one point or the other. There are some Asus PadFone specific apps and widgets as well, but most are not that great to use. The android ICS experience is fluid and stutter-free thanks largely to a dual-core 1.5 GHz processor. The benchmarking tests proved that the PadFone is a rather good performer when it
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comes to multimedia and gaming, but heavy usage on the phone tends to really drain out the battery real fast. Especially when using WiFi and/or 3G. Next, you can simply insert the phone in the back compartment of the tablet and phone’s connectivity and data gets shared with it. But because of the back-panel for the phone, the build feels a bit bulgy on the right side when in portrait mode. But the keyboard dock charges the tablet, which in turn charges the phone itself – when in this mode. The keyboard felt a bit crammed and not the most comfortable to use, but the neat use of Android specific keys made life a lot easier. Oh, there’s a stylus too – if you wish to use, quite easy to pair and works pretty well too.
4.3” Super AMOLED capacitive touchscreen 10.1” capacitive touchscreen PadFone Station 1.5 GHz dual-core processor Android OS v4.0 ICS 8MP rear camera with flash 32GB internal, microSD card support up to 32GB 1GB RAM
For an asking price of 65K, the 32GB variant of the original PadFone is hard to recommend. Especially since the newer PadFone 2 is already out for a similar price and has newer stuff in it. The PadFone in itself is a good device, but not great, and a few annoying bits here and there make it harder to fall in love with it. Buy it only if you don’t want to carry different devices around and are okay with slightly older hardware/software combo.
The PadFone dock connects easily and the keyboard has a slot for the tablet to be fixed on to. Ditto for the tablet, which has a microUSB as well as mini-USB slots for the phone to be fitted into. The overall dock does feel a bit heavy and we felt clumsy while using it, but it does the job okay.
The 8MP snapper is quite good and gives decent quality images, though not as good as the best ones in the category like iPhone 4S/ iPhone 5 nor the Note II. Still quite pleasant, sharp and good in contrast
EXHIBIT RATING Reviewed By: Chaitanya Tapase
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AND HEADPHONE BUYING GUIDE
or music lovers, headphones are becoming more and more important, as people tend to spend more of their lives on the go. That's in addition to the obvious benefit of listening without disturbing others, whether they're roommates, neighbours, or fellow commuters. The thing is, some people happily spend more than half a grand on a new tablet or portable media device with an estimated lifespan of around three years, yet the question we're asked often is still, "What's the cheapest pair of headphones I can buy that don't completely suck?" Headphones, earbuds, and earphones are generally viewed as the least essential link in the musical chain—the part you can easily skimp on. In reality, your headphones are the most important link in that chain: A quality pair has a larger impact than the player itself on how your tunes will sound. Also, if well cared for, they will long outlive your planned-to-be-obsolete tablet, phone, or MP3 player. And you don't have to break the bank, either. For as little as ` 1,000 you can get a high-quality pair of headphones and really begin to enjoy all the sweet-sounding audio you've been missing.
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Thanks to the wild popularity of phones and MP3 players, inexpensive earbuds have become ubiquitous. Even so, earbuds are not an ideal listening option, since they don't enter your ear canal and as a result don't create a true seal. Thus, they're more likely to be placed at an odd angle, often destroying the balance of the audio mix—and you can forget about getting solid bass response. Earphones, on the other hand, sit further in your ear canal, creating an actual seal—and they're often more comfortable to wear, since they tend to stay in place better than earbuds. Headphones, by contrast, are over-the-head (or behind-the-head) speakers that don't enter your ear canals at all. Circumaural models create a seal with cups that surround your entire ear, whereas open, or supraaural headphones sit directly on your ears without forming a seal. If you're looking to get more audio enjoyment from your smartphone, tablet, media player, or computer, new headphones will do wonders. And a set of headphones and/or earphones is a must-have for those times you want to listen to your music without bothering those around you—or being bothered by them. But the variety of styles and options is wider than ever, and the opportunities for in-person testing are fewer. To help you find the perfect set of headphones, here’s
an exclusive buying guide: what to look (and listen) for, descriptions of the different types, and specific recommendations, whether for yourself or for the lucky recipient of your generosity.
What to look for When shopping Unlike speakers, headphones don’t differ much in features—you plug them in, put the earpieces on (or in) your ears, and listen. (One exception, covered below, relates to remote/headset functionality.) For the most part, the main differences between models are type, comfort, and sound quality. I explain the different types of headphones later in this article, but here are a few things to keep in mind when shopping.
specs and sound quality: You should generally ignore manufacturers’ specifications— especially frequency-response numbers. No standard testing methodology exists for headphone frequency response, and many vendors exaggerate their specs for marketing reasons. Plus, even if those specs were accurate, they wouldn’t tell you much about how a particular set of headphones actually sounds. Instead of reading specs, use
your ears. (If you can’t audition a product in person, read reviews from a source you trust.) As with speakers, a quality set of headphones reproduces audio with good balance between treble (upper), midrange, and bass (lower) frequencies, producing full, rich sound while preserving detail. However, because of their especially small drivers (speakers), headphones present a unique challenge when it comes to bass response: Unlike huge speaker woofers that you can not only hear, but feel, the drivers in most headphones can’t reproduce the visceral impact of low bass—you may be able to hear the lowest frequencies, but you probably won’t be able to feel them. I point out this bass issue because some vendors attempt to address it by emphasizing certain bass and upper-bass frequencies to give their headphones more “kick.” This helps the headphones stand out from other headphones in the store, and some people— especially those who use their headphones while exercising or for beat matching—really want that exaggerated impact. But such headphones often become fatiguing to listen to over time. If you’re interested in accurate audio reproduction, be careful not to be wowed by emphasized bass. (The same goes for exaggerated treble detail.)
The best approach, when possible, is to audition a set of headphones for several hours—or, even better, several days—with a variety of music. If the headphones still sound great at the end, there’s a good chance they’ll satisfy you over the long run.
headset functionality and inline control modules: Many current headphone models include, right on the cable, an
inline module with a microphone and one or more remotecontrol buttons, much like the inline remote on Apple’s iPhone earbuds. At minimum, this remote features a single multifunction button for controlling media playback; making, taking, and ending phone calls; and taking advantage of an iPhone or other smartphone’s voicecontrol features. The module’s microphone can be used to talk on the phone, make voice recordings, and give Siri or other voice-control commands. Models aimed at iOS users generally
include a three-button remote with dedicated volume-up and -down buttons; this three-button remote also lets you control volume and media playback on recent Macs.
(or lack thereof). I include a few comfort-related tips below when describing the different types of headphones, but reading about a particular style is no substitute for actually giving a product a test drive (or a test run, as the case may be for fitness-oriented models).
Unlike most consumer-electronics devices, you actually wear headphones. So how well a set of headphones fits you—your head, your ears, and even your ear canals—plays a significant role in your long-term satisfaction
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protect your ears Where to buy: Sadly, fewer and fewer brick-and-mortar retailers carry quality headphones, and few of those that do actually let you try the products in the store—especially if you’re talking about in-ear-canal headphones. This makes it difficult to audition the sound and fit of headphones before you buy them. Your best option is to buy from a retailer with a generous return policy, so that if you’re unhappy with the way a set of headphones fits or sounds once you get it home, you can return it. This goes for both local and online retailers.
Before we get into the different types of headphones, a quick—but important—aside: Whichever set of headphones you choose, make sure you’ll always be able to enjoy your favorite music by protecting your hearing. While some of the models recommended here block external noise, you won’t always be wearing your headphones, so it’s good to keep a set of earplugs handy—you never know when you’ll find yourself in earshot of jackhammers, standing in a too-noisy crowd, or sitting in a movie theater with ear-splitting volume levels. Similarly, many music lovers attend concerts where the decibel level risks damage to your hearing. Inexpensive foam earplugs are widely available, but these work by completely obstructing your ear canals, making it difficult to hear what’s going on around you. Spend a bit more, and you can get special earplugs designed to reduce external sound to safe levels while still allowing you to hear clearly. Now let’s take a look at how to find better alternatives to those lousy stock-issue earbuds. Since earphones have won the popularity war over other styles, we’ll start with them, but we’ll also explore headphones, including noise-canceling and wireless options.
earphones As explained above, earbuds aren't the best way to get the most from your music. If you're looking for booming bass on a budget, reasonable quality starts to emerge in the 1,000 to 5,000 ` range. They don't deliver the most accurate sonic experience, but some feature deep, resonant low end—perfect for hip-hop and electronic music— which is a recent development in affordable earphones. Generally speaking, with the possible exception of Apple's much-improved EarPods at Apple Store, you won't find true audio quality in earphones until you pass the 3,000 mark. In the 3,000 to 8,000 price range, you can expect earphones that fit well, deliver powerful bass and crisp treble, and come with a variety of tips in different sizes to ensure a good seal. Ultimate Ears, Sennheiser, and Klipsch are consistently strong players in this category, but we've also seen promising affordable earphones from other competitors as well, such as the AKG K 350. If you're more about accuracy than booming bass, you'll want "flat-response" pairs that offer a more pure, less sculpted audio signal. The Etymotic ER-4PT ` 16,000 is our flat-response earphone benchmark, while the less expensive Bowers & Wilkins C5 for ` 10,500 also offers fantastic audio performance with richer bass. In this same price range, you should expect well-matched left and right earphones, as well as better definition on the lowest and highest frequencies. Etymotic makes the flattest pair in this range, but there are plenty of options that offer more low-end without boosting too much.
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headphones Generally, headphones should be able to reproduce richer low end since they have larger drivers than earphones and they don't rely on an in-ear seal to deliver sound. Some listeners also find headphones just plain more comfortable to wear, and easier to put on and take off, than they do earphones. When it comes to consumer headphones, several companies stand out, including Sennheiser, Yamaha, Grado, and Beats by Dr. Dre. The Logitech UE 4000 is a lower-cost headphone pair that delivers clean, powerful sound with an emphasis on crisp mids and highs. If you seek flat response with a bit of added bass, but not too much, it's a great pair to consider; it'll feed your hunger for deep bass and work nicely on the quieter songs as well. Some of our favorite higherend pairs are the Yamaha PRO 500 (our current Editors' Choice), the bass-heavy Beats Pro by Dr. Dre, and the Sennheiser HD 558 at about 8,000 bucks.
noise-canceling headphones You might try to dismiss the din of the outside world by cranking up the volume, but the best solution for saving your sanity and your ears is to invest in a pair of noise-canceling headphones, so you can enjoy your audio at much lower volumes. The AKG K 490 at Harman Audio, offer fantastic noise cancellation, and they sound pretty good—but they will set you back about 13.5K bucks. Meanwhile, Phiaton offers an excellent in-ear noise canceling pair, the Phiaton PS 20 NC at 5,300 bucks; at 5K rupees less than the AKG K 490 and 8K rupees less than the popular Bose QuietComfort 15 16K at BOSE, they're a steal.
it's also important to note: Noise-canceling headphones are generally not for audiophiles—they typically put noise cancellation before sound quality and tend to sound less compelling than similarly priced headphones without the noisecancellation circuitry. Plus, several in-ear earphones offer substantial passive noise reduction by basically functioning as earplugs.
Wireless headphones Wireless headphones can be convenient in any situation where you don't want to deal with dangling cables—like the gym, for example. After years of poor-to-mediocre sound, Bluetooth wireless stereo audio has made great strides in sound quality over the past year. While the data signal containing Bluetooth audio is compressed, headphone and earphone manufacturers have found ways to enhance the signal to compensate for its deficiencies in a way that makes them less audible than before. If you can't stand cords, check out wireless pairs like the Plantronics BackBeat Go for 3.5K and the Outdoor Technology DJ Slims for 3.K, both of which double as headsets to let you answer cell phone calls. For higher-quality wireless sound, the Sennheiser RS 220 for 32K is a great choice for high-end wireless headphones; the RS 220 uses DSSS, which is an improvement on Kleer's excellent RF-based wireless technology.
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Ferrari F12 Berlinetta
The Fastest Road-Going Ferrari Ever Made
hen was the last time that a Ferrari looked perfect? Hmm...that’s hard to zero in on. Isn’t it? Some might say,” Wasn’t the Enzo a looker?” Really? With that pointy nose-job taken straight off a Formula One car and with a rear section which had no styling cohesiveness with the front end, it wasn’t a perfect looking car. If at all it looked any good to some, it isn’t being made anymore. The 599 GTO looked quite smashing though. But that too isn’t there with the “On Sale” poster now. So if we take a look at the catalogue we are left with some disappointments. And please don’t get started on the much-hyped 458 Italia. No matter how much the trio at BBC Topgear keeps raving about it, the Italia isn’t the best-looking Ferrari which we have seen
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in the last ten years. Plus, to make it less-endearing Justin Bieber has one. God help us all then. So how about the rest? The all-wheel drive FF looks like a mistake made by God and the California is as bland as David Caruso on a Sunday morning. So are we really left with none to hold on to? Thankfully that’s why Ferrari created the F12 Berlinetta and we couldn’t thank the Italian car maker more for this car. The front mid-engine, rear-wheel-drive grand tourer is what we might call a car which is made to win hearts and stir souls. Titled “The Supercar of the Year 2012” by Top Gear, this beauty may have a name which is a bit girly. But ignore that part, because beyond that seemingly off-putting moniker lies a fantas-
tically-styled and meticulously-built mean machine which easily makes it to the list of the Top 10 most beautiful Ferraris ever made. And for some obvious reason you’ll be finding sentences in this write-up ending a lot often with the phrase “ever made”. The 6.3 litre V12 engine which thrives beneath that mile-long hood produces 730bhp of power and rips up 509 lb-ft of torque. So that easily classifies the F12 as the most powerful high performance Ferrari ever made. See, we’d warned you. With all that colossal power comes the great responsibility of delivering mind-blowing performance. Not pulling an Uncle Ben there, but the F12 can go from 0 to 100kph in around 3.1 seconds and it urges
you to dig your legs deeper into the footwell. Should you feel the need, it can give you the speed. The F12 take you to the 340kph mark with the same ease with which Maverick pulls off low-altitude flybys. Just in case it gives the driver a massive ego boost, that makes it the fastest Ferrari ever made. To keep you in charge of the proceedings onboard, Ferrari has installed a 7-speed DCT gearbox to keep a rein on those wild horses that it houses underneath that hood. Let’s get back to that part which Ferrari keeps reminding us about this car. The Speed. The tagline that this is the Fastest Road Car ever to have come out of the factory floor of the Italian car maker. Being capable enough to offer a blistering top speed figure of 340kph, the F12 looks down at every other Ferrari road car ever made. The Enzo, the 458, the 599 GTO and even the greatest of them all – the F40 – all of them are politely yet sternly intimidated by the sheer boldness and competence of the F12 to go faster than any other road-going Ferrari has ever dared to. And it does all that without having to compromise on features or comforts. And it doesn’t try to kill you while you are driving it. Yes, we are looking at you,
599 GTO. It even has a 320 litre boot which in the supercar world is impressive by all standards. The Aventador hasn’t got room for anything more than clutch purse in its luggage area and here we have room for a couple of travel bags. Beat that Lambo. And you don’t look stupid while getting in and out of the car. Isn’t that what the point is about usually? How you arrive and how you leave? It doesn’t come across as a surprise that the fact sheet of this car takes one’s attention of what was really intended with this write-up – the stunning looks of the F12. No complaints there as the F12 delivers and satisfies on all notes. Designed jointly by the Ferrari Styling Centre and Pininfarina, the F12 is one of those cars which melts your heart with its styling. However, if you are smitten by those voluptuous, curvaceous lines, perhaps you should send a bouquet to the chaps at the aero dynamics division of Ferrari, as those guys had an upper hand in calling the shots while designing the car. But unlike the Veyron which ended up compromising on its looks for the sake of earth-shattering speed, these chaps did keep things civil and pleasing to the eye. So while it has the wings, flaps
and vents wherever they are necessary, the exercise doesn’t end up making the car look like it could take to the skies if given a chance. It ends up looking incredibly beautiful and pleasing. What pleases the eyes and senses the most is that it has retained the best styling features of the 599 which it replaces and added some of the cues which are part of Ferrari’s current line-up. As an example, the front section is evidently inspired by the FF and the rear gets its share of 458 nods. So the F12 essentially has the best elements from its two stable mates and none of the borrowed features looks out of place. As a package, it looks complete. It looks perfect. So how do we conclude our preview of what is arguably the year gone-by’s best supercar? With a mention of its lineage, of course. Just out of curiosity, we pulled out the family tree of the F12 just to familiarize ourselves with its predecessors and what we discovered was a list which comprised of the most incredible looking Ferraris during each age which transpired. The 599 GTB, the 575M and eventually leading up to the Daytona – one of the alltime greats and the great great grand dad of the F12. Talk about blue-blooded pedigree.
- Sanjoy Alexander
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Completely New Feel, Completely New Appeal The New Audi Q5
`51,30,756/- (Approx) (Ex-Showroom; Mumbai)
Audi ventured into India not too long ago, but it has progressed from a being just another foreign brand (read German) venturing into the country to being a luxury car brand people crave to achieve. The New Audi Q5, purely on looks appears to be similar to the old one. The metallic paint and the High gloss package give it an extremely rich and classy appearance, which you expect from an Audi. The moment we stepped inside, the leather “Milano” upholstery had created a feel that we entered a whole new world. A world that was meant for “Royals”. The final feather to this hat was placed when we started the car. When two TDI and one TFSI engine rev, you got to be impressed. Our first impression of the car was “WoW”.
The looks remain fairly unchanged of the New Audi Q5. The sporty SUV has a flat roof line and wrap - around tailgate. There are new accents at the front and rear that give it its sporty look. The trademark Xenon plus headlights, like any other car from Audi adds brownie points. The aluminium parts on the exterior i.e. the hood and the tail gate are a good addition too. The size of the car is apt for an SUV. It is neither too broad nor too small. The alloy wheels add a touch of class to the car along with the exterior mirrors that are electric, adjustable, dimming and foldable. Rear Spoiler and the Panoramic Glass Roof is a great inclusion too. Finally, the metallic paint of the car makes it a complete package.
The swashbuckling interiors of the New Audi Q5 impress you right away. The Leather “Milano” Upholstery re - define the definition of travelling in style. The inlays are Walnut Brown in colour, something we do witness much amongst high - end cars. There is a special lighting package as well. What we thought was an interesting idea was to add manual blinds to the rear windows. Now when is a city that is awfully sunny, you don’t need to worry! The cargo space is quiet high too.
Specifications V6 Engine with 90 degree V angle 180 bhp @ 4,000 - 4,500 rpm 2967cc Engine Displacement 75 litre of Fuel Capacity 14.6 km/litre mileage (Highway)
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A deadly combination of swanky interiors and a powerful engine, we were underway for a treat the Audi way. With power from 130 Kw to 180 Kw, we could experience every ounce it the moment we were underway. Zipping across the roads in Mumbai, the car has perfect balance to manoeuvre through crowded streets and zip across vehicles. Turning around sharp corners and air benders was not an issue. The power steering did not disappoint us. The only complaint is that the breaking system is a little too soft. So you might want to take caution when speeding. The comfort and support that the adjustable chairs offer is a delight. The infotainment system is impressive. The moment we connected our phone via Bluetooth, we were humming, cruising and relishing the ride... all at once. When we were finally back we realised we werenâ€™t done yet. The Audi Parking System Plus gladly helped us park the car with ease. This diesel car ride was truly a delight.
Under the hood of the New Audi Q5 (Diesel), were 2 TDI (updated 3.0) and 1 TFSI (updated 2.0) engine, all with direct fuel injection. The fuel economy has been improve by 15% as the 2.0 TDI has fuel consumption of 14.6 Km/L. The V6 engine has an EU5 emission class. This SUV has truly been built to test its limits in any condition. Packed with high power and an ability to offer great efficiency, overall the engine is quiet impressive.
The New Audi Q5 is on the expensive side in the SUV range. Within the same budget, there are several options to choose from but obviously none of them will offer the Audi experience. The New Q5 does provide greater fuel efficiency and an infotainment system that is capable of turning every drive into a party. If you have that kind of a budget, then it is truly worth purchasing.
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The Stingray Lands
If the world actually ended in 2012, we would have to come back from the dead to get a taste of the 2014 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray. There aren’t many cars out there on which songs have been written. The Chevrolet Corvette is one the few which have had that privilege. Since the day which we can’t clearly point out in literary history’s calendar, songs and poems have all been written about women. Not all of them, but most. So when a car takes that spot, then there must be something special about it. There has always been something special about the Corvette. 60 years since the first one premiered at GM’s Motorama exhibit in New York City the Vette has been one of those few cars which has consistently been good at what it does. It was a crowd-puller then and it is exceptionally good at that now. Plus, it can pull your face off and make you laugh like a lunatic once you get behind the wheel and take it out for a spin on an open road or track, whichever you deem right for your share of automotive thrills. Now we have a new Vette in town, finally after
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months of teaser images, trailers and that incredible of a marketing plan to launch it as a camouflaged car in the Gran Turismo 5 video game. And boy oh boy, wasn’t it just the car that was worth the wait! Wasn’t it just the car to usher in a new year and to celebrate the fact that the Mayans messed up their calendar and prophecies big time! While Chevrolet was busy with prepping up the current generation C6 Corvette to challenge records at the Nurburgring and to make the new Viper GTS nervous at Laguna Seca, they were also engaged in that sinful act of teasing us with bits and pieces of info on what was in store for us – the C7. How many countless nights have the sketches and silhouettes granted many a graphic artist with as automotive enthusiasts and journalists around the world pulled every reference image, every concept study and every strand of hair out
of their head to come up with a rendering of how the new Corvette is going to look like. Some met with success as they turned to the Corvette Centennial Concept for filling up the empty spaces. Also known as the Corvette Stingray Concept, it had made its debut at the 2009 Chicago Auto Show and was instantly shot to fame with a starring role as Sideswipe in Michael Bay’s Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen. But amidst the chaos and explosions on the big screen, some of us had our eyes planted on this car which combined classic Corvette styling with modern car tech and design. But Chevrolet chose to keep it as what it was meant to be – a design exercise and an attention-magnet. Or that’s what they wanted us to believe. When the curtains rose for this year’s Detroit Auto Show, Chevrolet arrived heavily armed with the firepower which could unsettle every
other sports car manufacturer from Europe to North America from their seats. Allow us to remind you that the new Corvette has the nameplate which every true Corvette buff would kneel down before. It bears the name of Chevrolet Corvette Stingray. Indeed, the moniker has been resurrected for the new age and to commemorate the most legendary of all Vettes ever made – the 1963 Stingray. And it isn’t just about nostalgia and history which you’d like to rewind and playback while you are in the comforts of a rocking chair with probably nothing much to do other than reliving an old and pleasant memory. To start off, it looks stunning with those sharp lines which could cut your fingers and make you bleed if you aren’t careful. The body is dominated by sharp cuts, creases and edges which makes this piece of American sports car madness look like the perfect weapon of choice for the urban Knight. From every angle it looks magnificent and sinfully beautiful and we love that about this car. It’s a Vette after all. It’s never understated in its looks. We have a little complaint though. The round rear lights are gone in the new car and in their place, the designers have drawn in a pair of taillights taken off the back of the new Camaro. It isn’t something which spoils the show. But for those who sing about the round tail lamps which had been an iconic design feature for decades, the absence may be a bit unforgiving. On a more pleasant note, it comes with a detachable carbon fibre roof which when removed provides the occupants with instant wind-in-the-hair open-top driving experience and injects the car with a stronger dose of sex appeal. If you are doubtful about its capabilities, then you have to go through the spec-sheet at least once. Brace yourself, because with a power
output of 450bhp and torque peaking out at 450 pound-feet, the new Vette is the most powerful standard edition of the car which Chevrolet has ever made. And the 6.2 litre LT1 V8 engine isn’t place there to be gawked at. It’s there under that long hood to work its American posterior off. Now comes, the face-tearing and neck-breaking parts. Nope, it isn’t the suspension, but the acceleration figures. 0 to 92kph is achieved with the boundaries of 4 seconds and at a time when fuel prices seem to go only one way – well, up – the Corvette Stingray is reassuringly fuel-efficient too with its cylinder deactivation wizardry. Offered with a seven-speed manual transmission (Thank you, Lord) as standard and a six-speed auto with paddle shifters (Meh) the new car’s transmission options cater to both class of drivers – the ones who prefer to stay old-school and the rest who prefer to have their toys hi-tech.
The Corvette Stingray runs on new 18x8.5-inch front and 19x10-inch rear wheels. But if you choose to opt for the more enthusiast-oriented Z51 Performance Package, you’ll get to wear 19x8.5-inch front and 20x10-inch rear forged aluminum wheels. The wheels come shod with new Michelin Pilot Super Sport run-flat tires developed specifically for the new car. Brembo four-piston calipers and steel discs provide adequate stopping power while bigger slotted discs will be deployed in Z51 Performance Package versions. The Z51 Performance Package is targeted at track enthusiasts and that obviously means a sharper, faster and better version of an already exuberant creature. With electronic limited-slip differential, dry-sump oiling system, integral brake, differential and transmission cooling, suspension upgrades and an aero package, the upgrade is one which will please the appetite of more serious drivers.
The interiors are incredibly well-designed as well as futuristic. It’s quite a place to be if you look at it. Everything has got a sort of fighter jet cockpit-meets-USS Enterprise flair. With the instrument cluster and the central console literally cocooning and wrapping themselves around the driver, the interior design in itself merges the occupants with the car. And you get the choice of Napa leather, aluminum, carbon fiber and micro-suede to deck up the space to your tastes. We love what they have done in red. It’s a bit too loud and flashy, but come on, this is not a Rolls Royce Drophead or a Continental GT. It’s a Corvette for heaven’s sake. Like the Viper which is supposed to be all bulky and brutal, the Corvette is expected to be wild and flashy. And choose your throne well from a regular GT seat and a Competition Sport seat meant for track use.
We hear that the build quality has improved too. So it won’t leave dent behind if somebody leans on its boot lid and it won’t disintegrate two weeks after you bought it, hopefully. The Chevrolet Corvette Stingray will be launched in the US towards the third quarter of the year and with its arch-rival from the same turf – the Viper GTS – already in the game we just have to grab a burger and a coke and sit down before our laptops waiting for the Youtube videos to pop-up. Trust me, a lot of people around the world are thinking of pitting the Viper and the Vette against each other as soon as they can get these two cars on the same stretch of road. May the best car win.
- Sanjoy Alexander
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Upcoming SUVs : 2013 Hyundai Santa Fe
yundai makes and markets some of most reliable, reasonably priced and generously kitted cars in the country. Only a few manufacturers can claim to be really good at this feat. But the Koreans have got this equation completely right across their range of cars in the India. List out every single car in the Hyundai stable and you’ll find none of them to disappoint in terms of appeal and value for money proposition. From the bare-basic Eon at the bottom of the ladder to the range-topping Santa Fe SUV way up, all the cars to bear the slanted “H” logo have delivered efficiency and that sense of satisfaction which is at times hard to define, but pleasing to be at the receiving end of. By the way, let’s just forget that the previous generation Hyundai Elantra never happened. It wasn’t that good a package in any way. But Hyundai washed off the sour taste left behind by that hideous car with a new Elantra, which is both tempting to look at as well as engaging to drive. So what’s our topic at hand? It’s the arrival of a new flagship car for the Hyundai brand. Hyundai will be replacing the previous generation Santa Fe which is currently being sold in India with the new one sometime this year. It isn’t exactly a brand new moniker as such, because we are acquainted with the Santa Fe name already. But it’s good to see that manufacturers are finding it crucial to update their range with the global cycle rather than waiting for a year or two to launch a new version here. India has emerged as one of the major markets for Hyundai and though Santa Fe wasn’t a smash hit as such, it is still very much liked for its
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looks and features. Plus, the SUV also comes with that comforting awareness that there is a handy Hyundai service station nearby, should anything go wrong. The third generation Santa Fe made its international debut at the 2012 New York International Auto Show and it’s this mean-looking machine which will be launched in India this year. Perhaps it is the first time that a Hyundai doesn’t look like a “Hyundai” as such. Take a good look at the image and you’ll be finding it difficult to identify the brand without the badge. Yes, it does have the “Fluidic” styling elements. Still you’ll be pleased to see that Hyundai’s designs have matured a lot. As the images clearly depict, the new design philosophy of Hyundai known as the “Fluidic Sculpture” is evident in the styling. Like many manufacturers who are gradually shifting towards a “family face” approach, Hyundai too is taking a step in making their cars identifiable as a family. The major defining features which are in line with the Hyundai family looks are the hexagonal grille and the tear-drop headlamps. To make the SUV stand apart from its sedan stable mates, Hyundai adopted what they call the “Storm Edge” design concept for the Santa Fe. According to Hyundai it “captures the strong and dynamic images created by nature during the formation of a storm”. Sounds interesting and though we haven’t really seen how nature goes about creating imagery, we do think the Santa Fe looks capable enough to kick up a storm. Take our word for it, the new Santa Fe is much more imposing than its predecessor. Though
the wheelbase remains the same, the Santa Fe has grown bigger in size and stands atop 19-inch wheels, which we hear is the first time Hyundai even thought of handing over an SUV on wheels that large. The stance is worth a mention too as the designers have worked cleverly with the creases and the wheel-arches to come up with a stance which works well if making a statement is your plan. It looks all set to intimidate almost all of the mid-size SUVs which are in the market right now and don’t be surprised if someone drives up in one of these and refuses to make way. We hear that it’ll be powered by two engines. The 2.2 litre diesel unit which works well for the current generation Santa Fe will be retained as the 194bhp powertrain is a proven work horse. There’ll also be a smaller diesel unit, possibly a 2.0 litre one which will make the SUV accessible to more buyers. As for the features list, it is better to leave it unattended for now as we’d run out of space trying to list them all. So to make it as concise as we can, we’ll just say you’ll never feel the need to complain once you sign the dotted line. The new Santa Fe has almost every feature which you can come to expect from a premium SUV and it has seats for seven. Perfect for joint families we’d say. With the price tag expected to be within the `25 lakh range, it isn’t going to be pricier than the outgoing model too. Officially we are hooked.
- Sanjoy Alexander
February 19th - Save the Date Just merely days before the biggest mobile phone extravaganza of the year, Mobile World Conference takes place at Barcelona, Spain, Taiwan based HTC plan to make an announcement. It was less than a month back when they unveiled the highly awaited HTC Butterfly to the world, they now wish to make yet another broadcast. The invite was sent out to members of the press with not too much detail revealing the purpose of the media gathering. As expected, several rumours have been circulating ever since. One such prominent rumour is that they may introduce the M7 Android flagship. Why the buzz because the M7 is believed to have some really powerful features like a 13 megapixel camera, 4.7 inches Capacitive screen with Multi-touch display that supports 1080 x 1920 pixels, 32 GB internal memory, 2 GB ROM and so on. The event will be held in two different cities - London and New York simultaneously. The members of the press in India will be invited on that day too but the time remains unconfirmed. With all the speculations floating around this highly awaited event, it looks like only time will tell what lies in store.
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PEEPING INTO THE FUTURE Every year in Powai (A quaint corner in Suburban Mumbai) there is a fest, nay, a celebration of technology that takes place. Year after year, with the same passion and same levels of enthusiasm. Our premier instute of technology, the IIT, opens its door of the Mumbai Campus every year in Jan to a wide-eyed audience who are simply blown away by what is showcased. This year was no exception. In fact, this year it felt as if TechFest was in a gear of its own. With a world of awe created on its own will. There were robots dancing to the most popular YouTube song of last year - Gangam Style, there was the Akash Tablet displayed for its educative purposes, there were bike shows and speeches and a whole lot more. Nothing can truly capture the entire spirit of TechFest 2013, but we were there to see the future tech leaders pouring their brains into some innovative ideas and technology that will also interest the biggies of the tech world. The Annual Science and Technological Festival of IIT Bombay also happens to be Asia’s largest Science and Technological Festival and patronised by UNESCO. Techfest 2012 saw a footfall of more than 92,000 students with over 25,000 students from India and abroad participating in various events. From challenging Competitions to Lectures by noted luminaries, from incredible workshops to funfilled O-zone, Techfest 2013 had everything to conquer one’s imagination. With more than 150 events spread over the 3 days and total prize money of over 17 lakhs, Techfest offered the best to all its participants as well as the visitors. Techfest 2013 began with a series of campaigns focused at promotion of futuristic and eco-friendly technologies or technical innovations aimed at eradicating problems faced by the common man, these initiatives to address social and environmental causes have set Techfest apart from any other college festival and added a whole new dimension to this organisation working on a non-profit basis.
Techfest Green Campus Challenge
Techfest Green Campus Challenge is a first of its kind initiative in India by Techfest 2013, IIT Bombay towards green technology and cleaner India. With a total prize money worth 2.5 lakhs, the challenge involves the Green
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Clubs of all colleges to be a part of this event and perform tasks to win the event. Over 750 colleges have registered for the challenge. The challenge involves 99 tasks in all of various difficulty levels that have been divided into 11 genres which include: Energy, Climate and Air, Sustainability, Social Outreach, Bio-diversity and Land –management, Green, Food, Waste, Social Media, Water, Design and Creatives. Around 50 colleges all over India completed over 85 tasks including Cycle Rallys in their respective cities.
With 5 genres of Ideate this year, Techfest aimed to broadly cover all the predominant problems of our society. With a prize money of `4 Lakhs, the competition aims to improve the current problems prevailing in the society Inspire India: Inspire India invites ideas for changes which can have a strong and lasting impact on the society to tackle the problems head on, pertaining to the society in general. Earth: Implementing green technology in day today activities is one the ways to save our Earth. The competition aims to question today’s youth: The bottom of the oil barrel is now visible, are you the answer ‘Earth’ is looking for? Ummeed, for a better tomorrow: The desire for quality upbringing for all children is noble and surely one shared by all. Ummeed, for a better tomorrow invites ideas for the upliftment of children. Utkarsh: India is primarily an agriculture-based country with nearly one-fifth of total GDP of the country being contributed by this sector. There is a need of implementable and economic ideas to uplift one of the most integral part of Indiathe Rural India Vidyarth: The Indian education system has always been criticized for promoting rote learners and blind curriculum abiders rather than independent and creative thinkers. The competition focusses on revolutionizing the system with extremely potential ideas.
Some of the eminent personalities in the Lecture series this year are:
Amartya Sen (Nobel prize, Economic Sciences, 1998)
Helped to create the United Nations Human Development Index. In 2012, he became the first non-American recipient of the National Humanities Medal. Will be delivering the prestigious G. L. Mehta Memorial lecture hosted by the Board of Directors at IIT Bombay.
Rakesh Sharma (First Indian Astronaut)
Conferred with the Ashok Chakra and Hero of the Soviet Union awards. Spent almost 8 days in space and did life sciences and materials processing experiments, including silicium fusing tests. He will enlighten us on ”Should India Invest In A Manned Space Programme?”
Montek Singh Ahluwalia (Deputy Chairman, Planning Commission)
First Director of the Independent Evaluation Office at the International Monetary Fund. Member of the influential Washington based financial advisory body, the Group of Thirty. Awarded Padma Vibhushan, India’s second highest civilian award.
Jocelyn Goldfein (Director of Engineering, Facebook)
Holds a bachelors degree in Computer Science from Stanford University. Responsible for key Facebook product features like news feed, search, and photos.
Ei-ichi Negishi (Nobel Prize, Chemistry, 2010)
Currently working as a Professor at Purdue University, he will enlighten us on the “Magical Power of d-block Transition Metals:
Past, Present and Future”.
The speakers included:
(Vice President, Redhat Inc.)
Stephen Cook (Turing Award, 1982)
Regarded as one of the forefathers of computational complexity theory and received the Turing Award for his contributions to the same. Formulated the most famous problem in computer science,the P vs NP Problem.
Drew Berry Emmy and BAFTA award winner, Biological Animator
Erez Lieberman Fellow at the Harvard Society of Fellows and Visiting Faculty at Google
Ranveer Chandra Senior Researcher in the Mobile Computing Research Center, Microsoft
Andrea Armani A senior IEEE member working on producing optical devices with previously unachievable behavior and a Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists winner
Currently a University Professor at the University of Toronto, Department of Computer Science and Department of Mathematics he will enlighten us on ”Ultimate Limits of Computing”.
The other lecturers were:
(Chairman, Science Operations, Curiosity)
Only Asian on the Curiosity Mars mission, he conducted chemical analysis of rocks and soil on the landing site.
At present, he is a member of the Mars Odyssey Mission and the Mars Exploration Rover Mission.
This planetary geologist has won several accolades, which include the NASA Mars Pathfinder Achievement Award in 1997 and the NASA Mars Exploration RoverAchievement Award in 2004. He will speak on the existence and sustainability of life on Mars.
An event where some of the top technological innovators and researchers of the world come together and present their revolutionary game-changing ideas. A one of its kind conference for the first time in India being hosted by a college festival on its own.
It is a cute SUV-sized mobile robot from France. Their design is largely inspired by jumping spiders and they’re very quick on roads as well as uneven terrains. The robot can dance or even write when it has its pen, as it will demonstrate during the exhibition at Techfest 2013.
(Founder and CEO of WiTricity, a Wireless electricity company)
One Man One Tree:
Archana Sharma (Senior Physicist and Only Permanent Indian at CERN’s LHC)
Charles H. Lineweaver (Astronomer and Senior Fellow at Planetary Science Institute, Australia)
From Hasegawa Lab (Tokyo), this robot can think, learn and act by itself using artificial intelligence. This robot remembers basic knowledge and it can apply that knowledge to its immediate situation. The SOINN technology also allows the robot to connect to the internet and other robots for information
From France, the design of AirBurr takes inspiration from insects which regularly collide with obstacles and manage to recover. The robot can control its own speed like an insect and can understand the layout of the location by colliding with other objects.
(Director of Mathematics at Queens Mary Univeristy)
SOINN based HIRO robot:
Osamu Hasegawa (Man behind the Robot HIRO which Learns, Adapts To New Situations Autonomously)
Lined up this year are around 50 exhibits from over 20 countries from the famed HIRO robot, Xachikoma from France, MIT Media lab, AirBurr from Switzerland and many more which will bring to life the essence of robotics and the basic sciences.
This art installation from Electronic Shadows, Paris is constructed from 15 kilometers of taut elastic wire meant to emulate a 3-D forest of light.
Aldebaran Robotics, France, the world leader in humanoid roboticsare going to exhibit their robots for the first time in India @ Techfest .It is capable of expressing anger, fear, sadness, happiness, excitement and pride. The Nao was used in RoboCup 2008 and 2009, and the NaoV3R was chosen as the platform for the SPL at RoboCup 2010.
Militaries around the world use Unmanned Aerial Vehicles or UAVs for routine surveillance and to carry out basic attack strategies. One such prototype was seen in the famous movie “3 Idiots”.
MIT Media Lab:
By Massachusetts Institute of Technology, USA, NETRA is a project of Camera Culture MIT Media Lab. The system is capable of computing the refractive error for myopia, hypermetropia and astigmatism. Till date, NETRA has received many awards like Vodafone America’s Foundation Wireless Innovation Project Winner, MIT Global Challenge Award, LAUNCH Health Innovation Award.
Some other Exhibits: Akash: Aakash is a low cost computing device/tablet for students, the project is initiated and funded by MHRD, Govt. of India. Aakash already runs Android 4.0 with many educational apps developed at IIT Bombay. Every Indian learner desires a chance to receive the highest quality education. Scarcity of trained teachers hinders this aspiration. Difficulty in accessing the best educational contents, in an affordable manner, further accentuates the problem. 103 I EXHIBIT I FEBRUARY 2013
Effective use of Information and Communication Technologies helps in significantly addressing these twin issues. Aakash Tablet, launched by Government of India, is emerging as a key ICT tool for this purpose. When used in conjunction with the high speed network of NKN, Aakash has a great potential to become a ubiquitous and effective ICT tool for students and teachers. While the main focus of this project is on engineering education, it is proposed to use the creative talent of these professional students and teachers, to develop applications and contents for all levels of education, including school education in Indian languages. Aakash team will demonstrate each application developed at IIT-B from Aakash. The teams will also explain what was the inspiration behind developing these apps and what challenge they came across. They will also explain about the usage and future scope of these apps. Existing apps on Aakash: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8.
Robo-control Proximity Proximity-wifi Educational content Blender Animation Aakash Programming Lab Clicker Accounting software on Aakash (GNUkhata)
Themes for app development: 1. 2. 3. 4.
Animated (interactive) - student will explore, experiment and learn Enhancement in the existing application on Aakash (Please refer link below) Educational Games Anything which can provide a learning platform to students and teachers
India’s First Advertising & Marketing Robot A versatile mobile shopping-guide which provides users valuable information via speech or a touch screen at any location
• • • •
A Versatile mobile service robot Neatly displays videos or presentations Certainly works well implemented at the ‘’Point-of-Sale’’, an exhibition booth or inside an office building. Display: 15-inch TFT-Display (1024x768 pixels) touch screen
After a successful launch of NAO robot in India, in Techfest 2012, Gade Autonomous Systems Pvt. Ltd. are going to launch India’s First Advertising and Marketing Robot “AdverTron” at the Techfest 2013. AdverTron is the new advertising and marketing robot of Gade Autonomous Systems Pvt. Ltd. resulting from the successful collaboration with MetraLabs GmbH. Its a unique combination of German Engineering with Indian Brain! Looking like a Ludo game pawn, AdverTron helps customers in hardware stores. It can take charge of tasks like welcoming, informing and guiding customers – duties that often occupy
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the precious time of employees. AdverTron is a real eyecatcher and thus the perfect advertising medium, causing a wow wherever he appears. AdverTron is 1.50 meters (about five feet) high, weighs in at 75kg, has a low-maintenance drive train at its disposal and can move about for up to twelve hours without having to recharge. Thanks to integrated Intel technology, it can easily be connected to existing networks and be fed with data wirelessly. AdverTron able to answer between 80-90% of customer inquiries as well as guide customers to the requested products.The amount of information the robot is able to deliver is vast and can be adjusted to fit any environment and activity. The AdverTron is able to personally guide people to desired locations as well as, on its display screen, show videos and play music to either market to, entertain, or educate people. The integrated barcode reader can be used to get prizing information. This allows the stores’ employees to concentrate on more advanced sales conversations. NETRA NETRA, created in MIT’s Media Lab, is a device that attaches itself onto cell phones in order to diagnose eye prescriptions in developing countries or rural areas that don’t have access to more sophisticated optometry equipment. NETRA, which stands for Near-Eye Tool for Refractive Assessment, could really revolutionize eye care around the world. Because the device uses cellphones, an already ubiquitous tool in developing countries, NETRA’s accessibility is far-reaching. Named as Netra (which means an eye in Sanskrit language) – this is a package of two things – a hardware app and an accompanying software app. Another thing required is a mobile phone with a camera. The entire setup is portable, compact and lets anyone to get an eye exam after which users can access a care provider through the mobile phone’s internet.
Indian Language Search Engine INTRODUCTION: Cross Lingual Information Retrieval (CLIR) engine for Indian languages Input: Query in one of the six Indian languages (Hindi, Marathi, Tamil, Telugu, Bengali, Punjabi, Assamese. Gujarati, Oriya) Output: In Hindi, English and Query Language
Currently in the second phase of the project Three new languages are added in second phase Assamese, Gujarati, Oriya
Built on top of Nutch Framework The search engine Sandhan is a mission mode project of a consortium of academic and research institutions, and industry partners lead by IIT Bombay. Sandhan is a Mono and Cross Lingual search engine which works for 5 Indian languages in the Tourism Domain (released recently by the ministry of IT). Prof. Pushpak Bhattacharyya, who has a vast experience
in the field of Natural Language Processing and AI, is the lead person. With the launch of SANDHAN in Bengali, Hindi, Marathi, Tamil and Telugu, the country expects to narrow down the converse gap that exists in the search of tourism information in English. For putting an end to the problems faced by the Indian tourists, especially to collect information on the web regarding their plans about visits to varied locations in India, the Sandhan search engine has been launched.
Over the years, the stage has played host to the parkour team from the sets of Casino Royale. Tony Chapek, an interactive illusionist from the States; Mark Nizer, arguably the best juggler on Earth; Pep Bou, a world-renowned theatrical bubble artist,thePa-li-Tchi fire dancers and Pyrotechnicians. It offers entertainment, but with a flicker of tech. Here are some of them: BLACKLUX: A fusion of hip-hop and wireless light technology, the act will be an LED glow dance from LuxyBoyz. This group from Taiwan has featured across the world’s most watched TV shows and glared across the most happening festivals PYROTERRA: This is a Czech art group dealing with juggling, fire and light show, acrobatics. Their art has burnt its way through Czech Got Talent besides shows for NASA, BMW, TOYOTA, Schwarzkopf and a host of other top-brass clients. FREESTYLE AIR: Being a group of 4 stunt cyclers right from the streets of France,they are regarded as one of Europe’s finest and most extreme entertainers. They competed and excelled at France Got Talent, receiving worldwide acclaim. Being telecasted on the Discovery Channel’s World Riderz, they have already had their fair share of exposure revving up all this time before unleashing themselves on India. LORDS OF GRAVITY: Lords of Gravity performs an extremely spectacular and innovative basketball slam dunk show, demonstrating high-flying acrobatic moves while precisely passing the ball to each other at the most unexpected times. They’ve demonstrated a successful attempt to set a new world record for the “Farthest Basketball Slam Dunk”, at the NBA Europe Live Tour, in Berlin, 2012. D-VA: The performance will feature popular trend of dance performances and an innovative combination of avant-garde technology, such as cold pyrotechnics, LED lights, lasers and projection. The act is being performed for the first time in India.
One of the biggest departments of the fest, Competitions showcases some thrilling and never seen before battles. From robotics to coding, we have competitions mentioned below which will serve a variety of tech hobbyists coming to Techfest 2013. With a prize money
of 25 Lakhs, Over 25,000 participants have already registered for the competitions and the number is still increasing International Robotics Challenge We bring forth the International Robotics Challenge, a universal and common platform for all the Indians as well as International participants to compete and excel. The qualifying rounds for IRC will be held in all participating countries - Bangladesh, Egypt, India, Indonesia, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Thailand, UAE. Winners of each of these country legs will get direct entry into: International Robotics Challenge Grand Finale to be held at Techfest 2013, India. Total prizes worth INR 4,50,000 to be won TechOlympics Teams would first compete in the TechOlympics: Qualifiers at their respective zone viz. Bhubaneswar, Coimbatore, Indore, Jaipur, Visakhapatnam, Mumbaiat the 4 technology skill sets we are testing. The genres are: Line following Aqua Robotics Aeromodelling Coding Robotron This segment has six sub-categories: IRC India Grid Master Hover - On Interceptor - Fog of war Magneto - Real steel Solar Express
Dimensions We all remember the entrance of Aamir Khan (Rancho) in the famous movie 3 Idiots, and the comment that follows from R. Madhavan (Farhan) is: “8th Standard Physics. Humnepadhatha, saale ne apply kiya. With relevant competitions, this segment has cash prizes worth INR 85,000 Xtreme Machines Through this segment, we invite you to witness technologies ahead of their time and robots which are terminators in their own right. Following are some competitions with ferocious robots: Code Czar- The competitions dealing with coding and hacking are:
(The fun side of Techfest)
International Artists Techfest brings you the opportunity to witness renowned artists from around the world perform on the streets of Techfest. Here are the some major artists who will be performing at Techfest 2013: Zlwin Magic (Mentalist from Malaysia)
FabrizioRoselli (Juggler, Actor and Clown from Italy)
JohnMan (living statue performer from Berlin, Johnman won the World Cup in Holland in 2010 (World Statues Festival))
Edison Lim (Malaysia’s Youngest Professional Illusionist)
SILENT DISCO Being introduced for the very first time in any college festival in India, Techfest, IIT Bombay launches the ‘Silent Disco’ to rock the party. The Silent Disco will be open for all and for no cost. The disco with an aim to solve the Noise pollution problem and an alternative to the Mumbai Sound Rules which resist the youth to have fun, play loud music after 10 is no more an issue. Bungee Jumping We at Techfest like to get people moving and jumping. Introducing to you the very first time in any college festival in India. Bungee Jumping!!! Its to Feel the thrill not just from the free falling but also from the rebound. F1 and XD Simulator are going to be a part of Techfest this year which will be launched on such a wide scale for the first time. This is to give you an exact feel of Driving F1 cars in true style, just at IIT Bombay Techfest. Light Painting World Alliance The Light Painting World Alliance (LPWA) is an international self-juried guild of established and emerging professional light painting photographers. On the Spot Competitions: Cube Mania Techfest is hosting 11 exciting variations on this classical brain-teaser - starting with the 2x2x2, and moving all the way upto challenging variations that will surely keep even the cube’s most hardened champs guessing! Board Games Camp: Board Games Camp is about playing strategy games, not just talking about them. We’ll have a host of board games for you to explore and play with, from well-worn table fillers to little-seen exotics, some being introduced for the first time in India.
Techfest presents a plethora of fun workshops for anyone to just jump into and enjoy a cool yet technical extravaganza. Judo Workshop: Techfest we give you an opportunity to lay hands on the basics of Judo which will be conducted by the skilled masters. Mentalism Workshop: Techfest brings you an opportunity to interact with one the world’s most famous mentalists Zlwin Chew and learn some beautiful mentalism and magic tricks to flaunt around. Character Animation: This workshop is intended to clarify why contemporary character animation is situated at the confluence between traditional and digital media, and also describing the process of character design and animation development for 3D. Rubik’s cube workshop: Rubik’s cube is one of the challenging puzzles to learn and master. Come to Techfest IIT Bombay and learn the art from the masters themselves to solve the Rubik’s Cube. KARAOKE NIGHT: Just to extend the horizons of Techfest fun segment to newer levels, Karaoke Night will be there at Techfest after the Technoholix Shows. The night will have big LCD screens with lyrics going on them and the crowd can have fun, singing dancing. Not just these, there would be desi food stalls at these places along with Bonfire to enthral the crowd present. Techfest National Open Quiz 2.0 (TNOQ) TNOQ is also the biggest student-organised quiz both in terms of moolah offered as reward and in terms of student participations. Qualifiers were held in Delhi, Bangalore, Chandigarh, Chennai, Hyderabad, Bhubaneswar, Kolkata, Jaipur, Pune, Ahmedabad and Mumbai. Grand Finale prizes worth INR 1,00,000 and overall prizes worth INR 2,00,000.
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HDR PHOTOGRAPHY For Added Drama
elcome to the fascinating world of HDR photography. Over the past few years it’s become a new photographic phenomenon, loved by some and despised by others. Since it relies heavily on post-processing it can really be whatever you want it to be. You’re the digital architect – the master of your own photographic universe. You can add color and texture, shading and detail, subtle nuances, or electrified neon madness. It’s your art – your decision, and we wish you a pleasant stroll down the path of creating your own unique vision. Over the last few years, the term HDR has also been used to describe many different techniques such as, Tone Mapping, Digital Blending, DRI (dynamic range increase), and Luminance Masking. There are quite a few more but if you strip away all these fancy titles and descriptions, they all have the same basic goal: Increasing the dynamic range of a single photo by combining multiple exposures. Personally, we use a bit of all these techniques combined in something we call Advanced Dynamic Blending. For the sake of teaching, we may call out a specific technique when necessary but we will never tell you that one is better than the other. We have always favored the artist over the tools and we truly believe that no technique can be wrong if it produces beautiful results. Whether it’s a hammer and chisel or a keyboard and stylus – whether it’s chemicals in a darkroom or pixels in photoshop – even if it’s Tone Mapping or Dynamic Blending, we’re all just trying to create something beautiful. So let’s get started.
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What is HDR Photography? High Dynamic Range Imaging (more often called HDRI or simply, HDR) is a process in which a greater dynamic range of light is captured throughout the lightest and darkest areas of an image. Like we said, there are a lot of different techniques but at the core, HDR Photographs are generally created by shooting multiple photographs using exposure bracketing. After that, they are merged back together into a single HDR image.
What is High Dynamic Range and how is HDR Photography best captured? Sensors in digital cameras capture much less dynamic range than the human eye. With digital imaging, many software applications have been developed to map the image differently in shadow and in highlight to better distribute the lighting range across the image. These applications overcome the limited dynamic range of a camera sensor by combining multiple exposures of the same scene in order to retain detail in light and dark areas. These exposure brackets are combined together to produce an HDR image.
How is High Dynamic Range Best Captured? Sensors in digital cameras capture much less dynamic range than the human eye. Many software applications have been developed to map the image differently in shadow and in highlight to better distribute the lighting across the image. These programs overcome the limited dynamic range of the camera sensor by combining multiple exposures of the same scene in order to maximize detail in light and dark areas. They combine the exposure brackets shot in camera to produce an HDR image.
How does HDR Photography compare to Traditional Photography? Well, this really just comes down to preference and mindset. Traditional photographers rely on Neutral Density and ND graduated filters to manipulate the light coming into the camera. They may also use polarizing and warming filters to clean and/or alter the color cast of an image. For the most part, true traditional photographers like to do everything in camera and try to rely little on post-processing. HDR photographers on the other hand, create the same images by relying on post-processing instead of filters and in camera tricks. They rely more heavily on software than hardware. It’s not any better or worse, it’s just a different approach to achieving the same result. This isn’t as cut and dry as we make it seem. Many photographers incorporate a wealth of techniques both traditional and not. Personally, we like to blend these two worlds together. It’s really fun to combine techniques from both schools of thought. It’s all about creating the best image we can, right?
You’re rambling. Could you wrap it up already? Why the heck should I shoot HDR?! OK, OK, let’s just say that HDR Photography is used to more accurately reproduce an image that resembles what is seen by the human eye. Cool? – OK. HDR techniques allow us to capture all the information in the lightest areas and every bit of the darkest areas of a scene. In some cases, an HDR photograph can capture more emotion and have much more wow factor than a normal photo. Since it captures a closer representation to what we can actually perceive, it has the ability to make some people feel as though they were there – like they can reach out and touch it.
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So, have you managed to hide enough money from your spouse yet? Great! Here’s what you need. Recommended Camera Features: BRACKETING & AEB (AUTO EXPOSURE BRACKETING)
Since the main focus of the game is going to be HDR, make sure that your camera has a bracketing feature. Some standard DSLR Cameras can bracket up to three (3) exposures while professional grade DSLRs can bracket up to nine (9). Three bracketed exposures can usually produce a stunning HDR photograph, so it’s not always necessary to spend big bucks on the upgraded bracketing feature.
RAW IMAGE FILE FORMAT
Raw digital photography has a wider dynamic range or color gamut than the eventual final image format, such as a JPEG. Raw images also preserve most of the information of the captured photo and save, with minimum loss of information, the data obtained from the camera’s sensor. In other words: Raw = Higher Dynamic Range. Period. Thankfully nearly all DSLR Cameras have this feature.
BEST DSLR CAMERA: Nikon D800 The Sony NEX-7 is certainly quite good in most conditions especially when you want to take images at the drop of a hat. But this Nikon D800 is a bigger, traditional DSLR camera. It shoots a massive 36 megapixels and has all the professional-level features associated with high-end DSLRs. For me, I prefer this over the Nikon D4 which is almost twice as expensive.
LOW NOISE AND ISO RANGE
When shooting for HDR it’s important to shoot at the lowest ISO possible. The higher the ISO, the more noise or grain will be in the image. Since HDR Processing always produces extra grain, brackets shot at high ISO ranges can look very poor after HDR processing. Some Cameras have improved ISO ranges that allow you to shoot at higher ISOs without losing quality to film grain. Pay close attention to these details when researching what camera is right for you.
HDR Photography Software
Basic Recommendations for Creating HDR Images:
The following are listed in order from Beginner to Professional (conveniently enough, also from lowest to highest price.
GOOD CAMERA: Panasonic Lumix GX1 If budget is not a concern, we suggest you jump down to the “Better” or “Best” recommendations. However, if budget is your principle concern, then no worries! This Panasonic will serve you well! It has a 16 megapixel sensor and is based on something called the “Micro Four Thirds” standard. This means that there many different lenses you can attach to this camera, which is something you can add over time. If you’re just getting started, there is no need to worry about lenses, since it comes with a servicable 14-42mm lens that will allow wide-angle shots and a little bit of zoom. It also has a slick 3″ touch enabled LCD screen.
Your One Stop Photoshop; arguably the most important tool in photography, design, and image manipulation & processing. Photoshop also has a built in HDR feature that achieves some pretty decent results. If you want to produce stunning imagery or you just want to put your friend’s head on a chicken’s body, this piece of software is an absolute must.
This is the software I use to process my HDR images. It’s fast; and it’s reliable & cheap. It’s an all around HDR Photography Processing powerhouse that, in my opinion, produces a better result than Adobe Photoshop’s HDR engine.
If you are going to be shooting HDR Photography, you are going to have a ton of pictures to sort through. Adobe Lightroom catalogues your image library for streamlined sorting, manipulation, and finishing. It’s also a direct portal between Photoshop (all Adobe products) and Photomatix Pro. In addition you can quickly create web galleries and upload images directly to facebook, flickr, and smugmug. So now that you have a camera, lens, and a tripod, your ready to start shooting for HDR Processing. Before we head out and fire off a bunch of photos though, let’s examine some of what goes into the shooting aspect of HDR Photography.
BETTER CAMERA: Sony NEX-7 It is compact and powerful. It can be used it almost any photographic situation and is one of the best models available in this class. Many amateur photographers use it to take photos of everything, from kids to landscapes to architecture to objects. This tiny 24 megapixel beast has a thousand other features that those clever Japanese crammed inside.
Should I shoot everything with bracketed exposures for HDR?
No, and not just because you shouldn’t… it’s actually impossible. There are a lot of times when you can’t fire off multiple exposures. Since this is probably the easiest problem area to identify, let’s break it down. Moving subjects and Portraits: If the scene is mostly moving objects or you have to move the camera to follow the subject, don’t bother trying to capture multiple exposures; it’s a post processing nightmare. If there
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are just subtle object shifts such as blowing leaves, drifting clouds, or moving water, then there are some post processing tricks to remedy the movement. If you are shooting portraiture and want to experiment with HDR, it only works if your subject can stay as still as stone. Photomatix Pro has a feature that allows you to create a Pseudo HDR out of one raw exposure. I’ll get into this topic another time. Low Dynamic Range Scenes: If there is not much dynamic range to capture in the first place the only thing HDR Processing will enhance is the texture. If increased texture is what your going for then bingo. Just don’t be disappointed when the scene still looks dull after HDR Processing. This becomes evident on dreary overcast days when everything looks flat. If you don’t see any shadows and highlights, HDR will probably not save the shot. Experiment with these types of shots at your discretion. Sometimes the enhanced texture and detail is enough to pump up the already bleak mood.
Well, Smarty Pants, when should I shoot HDR then?
HDR (High Dynamic Range) Images are composed of multiple exposure brackets. Each one of these exposure brackets contains, you guessed it, SDR (Standard Dynamic Range.) It’s the combining of all these exposures that creates a range of color and light more closely related to what we can see and perceive. Try to find scenes that already contain a wide range of color and light in the shadows, mid tones, and highlights. Simply put, you want to shoot elements and scenes that seem dynamic in the first place. Try and find interesting lighting scenarios or interesting shadow casts. Remember that the HDR processing will add the detail back into the dark shadows and the light sky and highlights. A simple formula is to work during those magical parts of the day at dusk and dawn. The last hour of the day is commonly referred to “Magic Hour” or “Golden Hour,” and has been the staple of many a photographer and videographer. It’s that time of day when shadows are most dramatic and the range of color is most vibrant in the sky. It’s at these times when we can find the most unique and beautiful lighting scenarios. A caution though is to be quick. Magic moments fade fast so grab them while you can. Golden Hour is not the only time to capture HDR Photography. Most times of day can achieve equally stunning results. Try to capture the same scene at different times of day. It might surprise you how different the processed images look.
How many exposures should I take?
This question is a bit harder to answer since every scene is different. Basically, the more dynamic range in the scene, the more exposures you need to take. In most cases though, 3-5 exposures can be sufficient. If your scene has really bright lighting or you happen to be shooting with the light source in your shot, crank the brackets up to 7 or 9. Night photography also needs more exposure data. I’ve found that 7 exposures works better than 5 in most cases.
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What are some basic camera settings to be used?
Obviously if we are taking multiple exposure brackets we should enable: Exposure Bracketing on our camera. Most DSLR cameras have this feature; make sure you enable it and select your desired setting. Make sure to shoot in “Aperture Priority Mode,” Aperture Priority (or Av) Mode allows you to choose a specific aperture value while the camera selects a shutter speed to match. This is different from manual mode, where you have to decide both values. Remember your camera’s bracketing function will automatically dictate the appropriate shutter speed for each exposure. Another handy trick is to enable your camera’s auto shoot function. This enables you to hold the shutter button down and shoot your brackets in rapid succession. It also eliminates camera shakes caused from multiple button pressing. You can take it one step further and get a remote shutter release for your camera. Then you don’t even have to touch the camera. This completely removes any possibility of camera shake.
ISO, F-STOP and SHUTTER SPEED? Oh my!
This is where settings become extremely important. Let’s start with the basics. ISO: The lower the better image quality. Easy right? – If you have a solid tripod then yes, shooting with a low ISO is simple enough. Since our camera is completely static we can use any shutter speed we want, right? Kind of.
F-STOP: Especially with low light or night photography, this is where that infamous High Maximum Aperture comes into the picture. The lower the F-Stop Number, the higher the Aperture. A high Aperture lets more light into the camera, increasing the shutter speed. Some lenses have Maximum Aperture ratings of f1.4 or f1.8 and can dramatically increase shutter speeds. Adjust accordingly. A side effect of opening the Aperture is an increased depth of field which can make elements in your shot a bit softer. Double check and make sure your subject is correctly in focus before shooting the exposure brackets. SHUTTER SPEED: Carefully consider the shutter speed of your bracketed exposures. Long exposures X multiple exposure brackets = a long time. It also maximizes the possibility of objects moving in your scene and creating motion blur. Remember, blurry objects can be the enemy of
HDR Photography. If there is ample light in your scene then it shouldn’t be a problem to shoot at the lowest ISO setting. Make sure you crank the ISO down all the way 100% of the time.
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SETUP YOUR CAMERA FOR LONG EXPOSURE PHOTOGRAPHY Long exposure photography can seem frustrating to learn for the beginner, but the payoff and affects you can create mean this is one area every photography enthusiast should take some time to learn. Stabilization
So important it has to be point one. Before even setting up your camera, you will need to make sure your camera is set-up with as little movement as possible, this means getting a tripod with a head to attach to the camera. Now these range from Rs 1,500 jobbies up to over Rs 18,000, but unless you’re Bill Gates a typical Rs. 2,000 to Rs. 8,000 tripod with ball head like the Manfrotto 294 is affordable yet both lightweight and stable. It has 3 leg sections with easy to use flick lock which feel robust as the unit is made from aluminium, and the main thing is it feels solid, meaning you feel confident leaving your expensive DSLR attached to it. So why is stabilization so important? Well the clue is in the title. Long exposure means setting shutter speeds to a higher than normal time, although there isn’t a defined time setting as to what constitutes long exposure as opposed to short exposure shots (or even medium if you want to get more detailed), typically we are talking about photo’s that are anything more than 10 seconds or so. Most typical shots of waterfalls or lakes where running water is blended to give the creamy, cloud like effect for example have exposure times of over a minute, whereas images of star trails in the night sky will have exposure times starting from 5 minutes. Because of the long shutter speeds, the camera will record everything in that time frame that is set, so anything that comes into frame in the designated time will likely be captured, including any movement from the camera which will cause blur. Typically, for professionals the slightest movement can affect an image so much that most will use a remote trigger to take shots as even pressing the shutter on the top of your camera will move the camera slightly, enough to unwittingly blur a shot.
Set-up Your Camera
This is where practice makes perfect. You will never get a perfect shot first, or even second or third time, it’s a course of trial and error. Wherever possible, shoot at the lowest ISO possible. This typically means you have the clearest image as possible with the littlestnoise, especially important for high quality images. Use manual focus and set the focus to infinity on your lens. In dark conditions especially, the autofocus will generally tend to struggle to find a focus point and will ‘hunt’, meaning the autofocus will keep zooming in and out to try and find a subject to focus on, but will find it difficult to. Use a high aperture. This brings the maximum amount of area into focus and compliments the previous point, obviously as you are manually focusing you want a high area as possible to be clear in the resulting image. Shoot in RAW format. This helps mainly in post processing with things like white balance and making small corrections. Turn off your image stabilizer. Believe it or not your IS may work
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against you here, as it will try autocorrect any small movement, which is obviously not what you want. It’s confusing as the IS may also blur a part of the photo you want to be sharp if there is even the tiniest infraction, so basically your cameras IS is to long exposure what water is to a Gremlin. Shoot in bulb mode. This lets you determine the shutter speed simply by holding down the shutter button for however long you want the exposure to be. This is perfect for shooting things like fireworks, whereby you don’t know how long a particular one will be in the air for, but you still want to experiment with shooting them with long exposure techniques. As mentioned before, it’s best to shoot in a way where your press of the shutter doesn’t shake the camera in any way, however little. This can be done with a remote shutter release which are as cheap as chips, Canon’s official RC-6 wireless remote for example can be picked up for less than 1000 bucks. Of course there is another simpler way around this, just use the self-timer on your camera after steadying it on either a tripod or flat surface. Typically the 2 second timer is plenty to press the shutter and remove any unwanted movement but most cameras have a 10 second timer too, just in case you move slower than a tortoise.
Practice, practice, make changes, then practice some more
Like anything in photography, but the best way to learn anything is through trial and error and learning through your mistakes. If a shot is too dark and underexposed, compensate the exposure using the settings by increasing it gradually and seeing the effects. If a shot is too light, do the opposite. Play around and experiment, it’s the only way to learn, at the end of the day there’s no harm in taking duds, that’s what the delete button is for, (unless you’re shooting film, then you can show off your pitch black fails to your heart’s content.)
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Boost Your Wi-Fi Signal With A Cola Can
fter reading the headline you sure are wondering how is this even possible! Nothing is more irritating than a weak Wi-Fi connection when trying to access the Internet at home or at work. What is the use of investing all that hard earned money over an expensive 5 mbps plan and a modem that looks straight out of a bond film, when it totally functions like a Dial - up connection. Now you can make use of all those empty Cola cans (Yes, you can use a Beer can too) lying around the house to boost your Wi-Fi signal. It is pretty simple. Just follow these steps:
Find a less crowded Wi-Fi signal. This is applicable to those who have multiple routers at their workplace and need to figure out the best available option for them. The thumbrule remains, the lesser the number of people on a network, the faster will be the speed.
Check the position of the router. Ensure that it is not surrounded by objects that can intervene its signal. In a household, walls, metal objects, floor, etc could be potentially hampering the signal.
inspite of doing all this, you could still be experiencing a weak signal. This is where we come in. Take the empty can, Slice out the bottom of the can. Do the same thing to the top but leave about one inch near the drinking hole of the can uncut this time. Take a pair of scissors and cut straight down the body of the can too. The cut can will open up like a sheet of paper.
Slide the drinking hole down the antenna of the Wi-Fi router. It will create a wall like structure on top of the antenna. Now your Wi-Fi signal will be more focused towards your computer.
4 Voila, in this way you can boost your Wi - Fi signal by merely sitting at home and making use of a can you could have probably thrown in thrash.
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save tweets to your account H
ow many times does it happen that you read a tweet which seems really interesting, but don’t end up clicking on the link accompanying the tweet? This may be because of lack of time or unwillingness to make that effort to click on the link at that particular instance. But that tweet stays in your head and you wish you had read the entire story contained in the link with the tweet. This need could easily be satiated by connecting your Twitter account to Evernote. Why is this cool? Because Twitter is chock-full of great stuff! Your ideas, thoughts, and experiences mixed together with all of the content from the people you follow: journalism, storytelling, commentary, activism, even comedy – to quote Rob Corddry, “It’s the perfect joke-writing medium. If you need more than 140 characters then it’s not worth it.”
Setting up myEN Follow myEN (@myen) which is the Evernote’s twitter account. myEN will follow you back, and send you a DM with a link Click the link, sign into Evernote, and connect your Evernote and Twitter accounts If you have a protected Twitter account, then do the following: follow myEN, accept myEN’s follow request; then send myEN a DM. After that, go to step 3 above.
How to use myEN For Public tweets: Add @myEN to the body of any public tweet For Direct Messages: Send a DM to myEN to create a new note in Evernote Tip: Retweet something you like and add @myEN to save it into Evernote.
It’s really easy. Give it a shot!!!
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USE FACEBOOK GRAPH SEARCH Facebook’s recent announcement was unveiling the Social Graph feature on the largest social networking website over the Internet. Openly claimed by Mark Zuckerberg as one of the three pillars of Facebook, Social Graph will aim at turning the portal into a powerful search tool within the website. One of the questions that most users will experience (as always) would be how to use this new service? It has been witnessed that whenever Facebook brings a new change, it sends the digital world in a tizzy. So here is a step by simple guide for using Social Graph. When using this feature, ensure that you don’t get confused with the new website layout. The search bar will shift to its left side, right next to the Facebook logo and the notifications will be shifted to the right side towards your settings tab. While searching on social graph, you will have to be very specific. So, if you search “Trail running India,” your search may not provide exact results. So, you will have to search specifically for “My friends who love Trail Running” and voila there are your answers. This is how precise it has to be. Social Graph has been created to provide accurate results to the users in areas like photos, interests, people and places. So, when searching for images or pages on Social Graph, you would have to type be very precise. So, look for “Photos of my friends before 1999” and you will get the desired result. While looking for pages ensure you type “Jewellery pages my friends like.” You can filter the search to obtain results existing not just within your friend - list but amongst friends of friends too. Just an advice, delete all possible content or hide it from your timeline that you don’t want a random person to come across. Now you are fully prepared to use Social Graph the moment Facebook opens its doors for the world.
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KEEP PHISHERS OUT OF YOUR INBOX W
e live in a world that is digital and continues to grow with each and every day. With the e commerce boom, we love to shop over the web. Credit and debit card numbers, transaction details, bank statements, etc are always in our E - mail inbox. If you love purchasing things off the web and lead a life that is digitally bound, i.e. all your banking operations take place over the web then you are a likely target for a phisher to attack. Phishers hack your E - Mail accounts and then retrieve important data like passwords, pins, etc. They are potential fraudsters who are on the lookout of a weak target. Cyber crime has been growing from quiet some time now and has become a serious issue. But don’t need to worry as you will have these tips handy on how to keep phishers out of your inbox. You Are At Threat
The most common strategy used to phishers is by sending across E - mails in the hope that you may click one of the links mentioned in the mail. These are potential Malwares, the moment you click a link your mail account details and passwords are sent across to the hacker. It is important to realise that you are at threat. So next time you see a mail with a subject line “You Have Won A Lottery Of Rs. 1 Crore,” don’t land up clicking it.
Never Underestimate The Phisher
This is a common mistake most people make, these hackers are well aware about websites, blogs, and other social networking sites and other interests. Once they are aware about these things they send across mails that would lure you into clicking them. Be very well aware about this. You can avoid this by moving all these mails into the spam section of your E - Mail.
Make Your Security Stronger
Most people think that installing anti-virus, ips, URL filters, and next-generation firewalls and such other software would keep them protected against phishing attacks. You will have to secure your network i.e. the Internet connection. It is vital that your Wi - Fi connection is password protected. However, this is not full proof too but like we have all been taught “Prevention is Better than Cure.” it is worth securing the network in whichever ways it is possible.
follow these three simple steps and you will be successful in keeping the phishers at bay.
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USE vine app One of the most spoken about apps in the last week has been the “Vine App.” No it is not an app that has anything to do with alcohol, it is a video app from Twitter. As always whenever a new app arrives in the market, most of us are clueless about how does it exactly work. The app allows users to create 6 second clips and share them on social networks like Facebook and Twitter. This app is only available on iOS i.e. for iPhone and iPad users. Here’s how you can use this cool app!
Proceed with the sign up process and add essential things like username, phone number addition, etc. You can sign in using your Twitter account or E - mail address.
Once signed in, you can start following people and view their “Vines.” As a new user you would be viewing editors choice vines. Finding friends and searching for friends is very simple as it searches your address book with ease.
Download the app via the app store. It is available for free. Once downloaded, provide all required permissions like push notifications, location access, etc to the app.
You can simply add a really cool caption and share it to the world. All vines currently are available to the world as all profiles are public.
Once the vine is complete, you can preview it and share it across your social networks. You can save the vine and choose not to share it too.
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To create a vine, you need to select the camera icon, which will be on the top right of the screen. This will open a separate page wherein you will see a camera view, a status bar and an exit button.
Press the screen using your finger and the Vine will start recording. The green line on the upper side of the screen will let you know how much longer do you need to hold. The moment you release your finger, the recording will stop.
Place Your Smartphone Safely While Driving When you are using a high - tech Smartphone, you would want to use navigation apps while driving. From long drives to short cuts, google maps, mapmyindia, etc such apps help you save time and reach your destination sooner. This is highly important for those who are new to the city as well. You obviously cannot place it in your hands or your lap.. it is not only illegal but also unsafe. Some also like to play music via their Smartphones in the car. It would not really be a smart idea to change the music while looking down at your phone and driving at the same time. So, how can you place your Smartphone safely while driving?
Windshield Mount This is probably the most widespread and commonly used Smartphone mounting option. Using a simple suction device, you can place your phone securely near your carâ€™s windshield. This helps you in not having to look too far to double check the navigation system. The mounts are inexpensive and can be easily removed and installed. The only drawback is that it blocks a bit of the forward visibility.
Dashboard Mount With the addition of an adhesive puck, most windshield mounts can be converted into dashboard mounts. There are also, permanent-install options that place the mounted phone lower on the dashboard, but these options often require some disassembly of the dashboard and tools to install. Some drivers avoid this as it alters the look of the dashboard. It has a greater advantage over the windshield mount.
This could probably be slightly annoying to give commands to a device but it is quiet effective. You no longer need to take your eyes off the road and still fulfil the purpose. Several apps offer voice controls as the navigation and audio systems promptly carry our actions at voice commands. This is safer than mounting the phone but can be annoying as not all apps will understand ones accent with ease. Not to forget, you may not understand the devices accent quickly too.
These are the best ways in which you can place your Smartphone and enjoy your drive with ease.
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Born out of Electricity O
ver the years, music composition has seen several advancements. Right from use of wind instruments to acoustic ones. Eventually, we progressed to use of electronic musical instruments and then the use of computer technology to create music like never before. Now we are not talking about mere sound editing, here we are progressing to a level where every band now makes use of electronic instruments and computers LIVE during performances. Right from guitars to keyboards, several musical instruments have now taken the electronic route. Several genres of music like classical, which have always used wind-based instruments, now blend in electronic instruments to create a great symphony. Let us have a look at some of the most used electronic musical instruments by modern day musicians.
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Electric Guitars Mostly used by musicians specializing in Jazz and Heavy Metal music, electric guitars are one of the most used electrical music instruments today. The guitar alone cannot produce high amplitudes of music, thus it is often connected to an amplifier for greater output. It is hard to imagine somebody playing heavy metal music minus an electric guitar. Can you imagine Aerosmith not strumming an electric guitar at a performance?
Electric Keyboard A Keyboard is like a smaller version of a piano with lesser keys. But, when connected with a rhythm, sound and chord generator it can produce unprecedented music. One must not underestimate this plastic musical instrument as with proper pre â€“ programming and synchronization it can turn any track into a peppy number.
DJing Console This has been a new addition to many compositions in the recent years. Bands now are equipped with a DJ who has a highâ€“ end laptop, a 16-channel mixer, and other equipment. The DJ constantly adds support sound to the bands composition. Not only this, in between pauses, he/she too can truly make the crowd swing.
Electric Drums These are electric synthesizers with an acoustic drum kit. These kits are equipped with mounted pads which when struck generate the electrical sound. Musicians prefer drums like Yamaha DTX Extreme to add lots of punch to their music. Widely used for all genres of music, drums have become an integral part of any band. Safri Duo would not want to forget this instrument at home.
Electric Violin Functioning on the same lines as the guitar, Electric Violins are majorly used in classic and contemporary classical music. In recent times, musicians composing metal, rock, hip â€“ hop, country, etc music too have started incorporating the violin.
This is how electronic musical instruments have become a big thing over the last few years. I doubt the likes of Santana and Marley could ever forsee every second band loads themselves with such expensive musical instruments.
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BIPASHA BASU GOES A STEP “BYOND” Coming from the glamour world, it does get very difficult to stay in touch with friends and family, since you are always busy and pressed for time. Which medium do you prefer to stay in touch; instant messaging, emails or social media? I am shooting round the clock and that keeps me pressed for time. But I ensure that I don't give my family or friends the chance to complain. I am constantly in touch with them while working via instant messaging or calls. For my fans , I use social media tools like Twitter and Facebook. Having acted in several films, what is your opinion on the use of technology in filmmaking? In my opinion the use of technology is the heart of filmmaking and makes life easier not just for filmmakers but also for actors. Name some of the gadgets you own and which of those is your prized possession? Apart from a mobile phone I own a Phablet too. My most prized possession would be the Byond Phablet P III.. I think it is really cool especially for someone like me who loves to multitask in between work and fun. If you could invent a technology what would it be and why? I would like to invent a teleportation device. When you live and work in a metro city, it is unbelievable the amount of time I waste in travelling. I would choose to simply teleport from home to work and back to save time and energy. To tweet or not to tweet? Your take on the positives and negatives of the blue bird. To Tweet definitely. It is one of the best ways in which I connect with my fans on a daily basis.
How will the world look like without any gadgets today? Frankly speaking it is unimaginable. I cannot imagine my profession or several other ones existing without technology. From the moment I wake up to the moment I crash, I am surrounded by gadgets. Mobile Phone or Laptop, if you had to pick one of these which one would you pick and why? Mobile Phone. To me it not only offers connectivity to my loved ones but also is a means to an end. From work related calls to simple entertainment, my mobile phone is extremely important to me. You are now the Face of Byond Tabs – tell us something on that . I am extremely delighted to be associated with Byond. I am very tech savvy and being associated with a brand that has such highly innovative products, it is a privilege. Your DVD on Fitness has been on a rage, what inspired you to come out with a Fitness DVD and what next can we expect. I believe in the philosophy of “Love Yourself”. Loving yourself means that you take care of your body and do everything you can to keep it in good shape, both physically and mentally. Your body is a temple and you should treat it with respect, love and care. If your health is good then every aspect of your life is fantastic! Your focus in life is better, you achieve your goals faster. The hope of spreading this philosophy through fitness is what prompted me to come out with my first DVD “Fit and Fabulous You” the response to which has been great. Currently my second DVD “Break Free” which is a dance workout DVD is out in the market and already it has fetched a wonderful response and there is lots more to come in the near future.
In my opinion the use of technology is the heart of filmmaking and makes life easier not just for filmmakers but also for actors.
I am extremely delighted to be associated with Byond. I am very tech savvy and being associated with a brand that has such highly innovative products, it is a privilege.
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The Italian Ocean & the Swiss Maestro enter Luxury Watch Market
Luxury Watch market has witnessed entry of several watch manufacturers in the last few years. But what caught out fancy were two brands in particular, Antonio Bernini and Raymond Weil. Their recent launches being the Ocean Series and the Maestro Phase de Lune Semainier. Both with its novel design and ideas have stormed the Indian markets in the elite watch category. Competing against several established brands like Tag Heuer, Kenneth Cole Reaction, etc, both of these watch manufacturer would have their hands full right from the very start. It may not be a cluttered market, but it certainly is a fierce one.
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Antonio Bernini’s Ocean Series Inspired by the sheer magnitude of the sea, The Ocean Series is a compilation of exquisite timepieces. These professional watches are built to withstand high-levels of water-pressure of up to 300 meters below sea level. The wrist adornment is nothing less than dynamite; the helium escapement valve protects the movement and integrity of the watch underwater by detecting and balancing the atmospheric pressure building inside it. The valve of this unique device automatically opens up to release any gas trapped in the watch and once the diver is back on the deck, in the process of de-compressing, the valve automatically resumes its original position. Each timepiece from the new Ocean Series collection also has distinctly coloured special screw-in chrono pushers on the case side, which not only protect its mechanism, but also maintain the accuracy of its chronograph movement. The collection has two main
components; the King Marine and Dive Pro. The King Marine takes cues from luxuriously designed yachts, the exhilarating spirit of a regatta and the extravagant lifestyle of a yachter. The Dive Pro effortlessly captures the exploratory nature of an urban seafarer, drawn to ocean escapades like deep-sea diving and marine life investigation. Priced between INR 26,000 – INR 30,000; ‘The Ocean Series’ from Antonio Bernini has created a touchstone in watch design, characterizing high performance and sleek design. The Italian watch maker has captured the essence of the ocean and with great precision assembled watches for the audacious sea explorers and water adventure seekers. Crafted for a well-heeled man with a discerning taste for life’s very best, The Ocean Series is a unique combination of exemplary design with the finest in technical innovations.
Raymond Weil’s Maestro Phase de Lune Semainier As heir to this great watch - making tradition, the maestro Phase de Lune Semainier concentrates time and space within a 41mm case diameter. On an almost lunar galvanic dial, seven blued steel batons orchestrate the whole. The four large hands indicating the hours, minutes, seconds, weeks and months revolve around the central part of the dial with its “clou de Paris” decoration. The three small ones indicate the date, the moon phases and the day of the week in three small counter displays (at 3, 6 and 9 o’clock respectively), like astral bodies in orbit around the sun. To regulate the measurement, four push-pieces are very ingeniously set in the polished steel case. This correction system which needs only a simple pressure of the finger was developed by RAYMOND WEIL’s watch designers. The centre of this complex system compris-
es an automatic winding mechanical heart, generating a power reserve of 42 hours that can be seen beating through a sapphire crystal. This marvel of precision and elegance is mounted on a black crocodile-style leather strap with an ardillon buckle, in the truest watch - making tradition. With the maestro Phase de Lune Semainier, the conductor Raymond Weil sets the rhythm of time and space. The universe it reveals reflects the image of the Swiss Brand, combining harmony, elegance, tradition and innovation. Both of these watch manufacturers are all set to attempt at conquering the watch market. It will be interesting to see how masses respond to these products in the future. Having entered the market only a few months ago, both of these brands have lots of ground to make up before they start preparing to go the distance.
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PowerTalk With Mr. Anirudh Dhoot, Director, Videocon Industries Limited 128 I EXHIBIT I FEBRUARY 2013
: Videocon has spread its wings across various product sectors like Television, Mobile Phones, Electronics and so on. How do you manage to strike a balance in planning and executing campaigns for all of these? AD: All these verticals are separate in terms of functioning and planning. We have professionals and respective CEOs for each vertical. So day to day operations and strategic planning for the business are taken care of on their own. On top of that, management engages in quarterly and monthly reviews to ensure to meet the objectives of the company : How has your tenure been in India as Director, Videocon Industries Limited? AD: My tenure as a Director has been a memorable journey that comprised of lot of hard work, failures, experience, lessons and finally some success. In the beginning, there was a lot that had to be put in place, I was completely new to everything. It took a lot of hard work and patience to understand what was required and what was the most profitable. I was groomed within our organization right from the lowest level. In fact my practical experience started with working on the machinery in the factory to visiting the markets and the dealers which led to understanding the market. I have practically experienced almost all the levels of operations. This helped me understand everything about the manufacturing as well as the market side of business.
: Having joined the family business at the age of 21, did you experience any early jitters or setbacks? or was it smooth sailing all along? AD: If it is a smooth journey, then it’s not worth it! When I was new I experienced all kinds of failures and hurdles but that was all a part of success. I made sure I learnt from every flaw and mistake I made. I can proudly say that I had a journey that was not smooth but it was totally worth it! : What has been your greatest achievement till date? What did you learn from it? AD: I would say my biggest achievement till now has been developing the Greenfield plant in Kashipur which was completed within 24 months. The production is on full swing and it has reached break even. We are expecting profits from this plant from this year. Right now I am also developing new power projects, which will take some time. : Apart from being a successful business personality, what other likes and hobbies do you have? AD: I like sports specially Badminton and T.T. I try to take out time for myself and like to play TT thrice a week. Being an avid Bollywood fan, I really like movies of Shah Rukh, Salman Khan and Yash Chopra Films. Trekking and Photography also excite me.
: The youth today faces several issues when it comes to salaries, job stability and stress. Any message for them? AD: My only message to them is, our first step towards stability is learning and learning involves lot of patience. But once that is achieved, we automatically are on our way to success. : In which of the above mentioned sectors do you feel there is maximum growth? AD: If we talk about the maximum growth, it would be DTH sector. Now the government is also supporting this sector making it mandatory to digitalize all TV broadcasting in the near future. Thus, a huge potential is seen in the market for this sector. Another sector which is taking the same road is the Consumer Durables sector which is growing at its own pace. : Videocon recently launched a DDB LED TV. Are we expecting any such exciting launches in the near future? AD: We are establishing DDB in our product portfolio. In the coming time, DDB portfolio will be strengthened by adding latest technologies like smart 3D, android and bigger panel sizes. Apart from this we are always ready to adopt new technologies coming in the product line up. Also there are OLED and smart side by side refrigerators`
: You are one of the youngest CEO’s in our country, do you feel it gives you an edge as a leader? AD: It surely does as when our minds are young, we are curious and always ready to learn and adapt to new ways and methods. A team will always relate to a youthful, enthusiastic and flexible leader who is always open for a two way communication and gets in a fresh outlook to work. : What is your opinion about the dynamic nature of the technology sector in these modern times? AD: At Videocon we believe in a continues process of research that results in effective innovation and incorporation of latest technology. In recent times, the smart touch is much in demand and we have strived to incorporate every aspect of this smart touch technology in all electronics including LCDs, LEDs, etc. Sensory touch screens are the next big thing and we are constantly finding ways of getting better at it.
“A team will always relate to a youthful, enthusiastic and flexible leader who is always open for a two way communication and gets in a fresh outlook to work.”
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PowerTalk With Mr. Chang, Managing Director, ASUS India. 130 I EXHIBIT I FEBRUARY 2013
: Asus has a large variety of products worldwide, ranging from computer peripherals to innovative gadgets like the PadFone. Not all of these, however, are currently available in India. Will that be changing in the months to come? CHANG: Asus launches several products worldwide each year. Our range is too wide. Even in China we don’t launch all our products as you will land up confusing your audience. For eg. in laptops we have around 50 products and it is not possible to launch them all. While launching products we have to do so region wise. So we feel certain products are fit for Indian markets and we launch the same here. In the coming months, we will add more products in the market. : We’ve seen a whole range of Windows 8 products from Asus launched in India recently as well. How have the sales volume been so far and the buyers reception of a new OS from Microsoft? CHANG: We have received fantastic response for these products, especially in the touch field. They have been well accepted and sales have been impressive. Right from smartphones to netbooks, several of our products that have a Windows Operating System have been loved by users. : Is there still a market left for the All-InOne (AIO) PC’s or with the launch of ultrabooks, netbooks, notebooks and tablets – is the AIO PC losing its charm? CHANG: In general I do feel there is still a market for such products. : Of all the innovative products that Asus has launched in recent years, which one has been welcomed and loved the most? CHANG: Till now, I feel the Vivo Book received a great reception. Our high selling products still continue to be our mainstream products like netbooks and smartphones. We are planning for a Tablet this year. That will have the main focus. : The PadFone was the first attempt by Asus to get into the Smartphone segment. Will we be expecting more smartphones from Asus in the future, which will have any
docks or other accessories? CHANG: Yes. We will be having several new products. We will be launching one in laptop and other in a tablet. The laptop will have a 13 inch called Transformer book. It is an upcoming product. : With newer upgrades to Google’s Android OS expected every year or even lesser, is it harder for manufacturers like Asus to push these out to their devices as well? CHANG: It has become an advantage to us, as a brand we provide regular updates to our consumers. We are the first to come up with solutions, in terms of integrating it at all platforms. : Does Asus find a market in Tier II and III cities as well, or is the concentration for growth solely on urban cities? CHANG: Within 2 years, we have started to expand in Tier 2, Tier 3 and even in Tier 4 cities. We have setup branch offices already. We opened up first in Delhi, but the penetration did begin from Tier 2 and Tier 3 cities. Out of our 60 stores today, 25 are in such cities. : What smartphones and notebooks do you personally use and why? CHANG: I use the PadPhone 2, which has not yet been launched in India. It is hassle free and offers upgrades like no flip. It is quite interesting. It is like the brain of the tablet. Now I no longer feel the need to buy a tablet, whenever I go home I simply dock my phone and I start reading books or watching videos. It has a quad - core system. It offers perfect performance. : Best advice you ever received and would like to give to a budding professional in the field of technology? CHANG: In the technology industry, the best advice is to always keep changing and innovating. That is the key to success. Today you could be number 1 but you could easily slip to number 10. The field is very dynamic, it is ever changing. In my opinion, communication skills are also vital. I am not an Indian but how I can co-exist is very important.
best ad“The vice is to al-
ways keep changing and innovating. That is the key to success. Today you could be number 1 but you could easily slip to number 10. The field is very dynamic, it is ever changing. In my opinion, communication skills are also vital. I am not an Indian but how I can co-exist is very important.
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What's Hot @ Harley Davidson Pen Red
Waterman Harley Davidson Gas Tank Horizon Asphalt Rollerball Pen - The Waterman Harley Davidson Horizon collection is eye catching in style and creativity, the Horizon's unique body is modeled after the most evident part of a Harley-Davidson bike, the engine cylinder. The pen ring is engraved with the "Harley-Davidson powered by Waterman" signature and its slightly rounded cap deeply engraved with the Harley-Davidson official bar and shield logo. Comes in a collectible gas tank pen case.
Nikon AF-S DX ED VR II Lens
The compact AF-S DX NIKKOR 18-200 mm f/3.5-5.6G ED VR II covers an extremely wide range of focal lengths (18-200 mm, equivalent to 27-300 mm in 35 mm format; a zoom magnification of 11.1x). The product has a 2 year warranty and a snap on lens cap. MRP-55,650/mi Price:
A-DATA 8GB Nobility S805 Used like a carabiner; easy clipped on a key chain or a bag USB swivel-designed High quality zinc alloy frame design make it durable and long-wearing COB (Chip on Board). It supports USB 2.0, backward compatible with USB 1.1 in two colours Silver and Black. The pen drive is extremely light weight, only 25 grams.
Canon PowerShot A810 This point and shoot camera is equipped with a 16 megapixel camera. With a built in CCD image sensor, the camera offers great picture quality. Other impressive features of the camera include a 5x optical zoom and 4x digital zoom. The operating software is compatible with both Windows and Mac operating systems.
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Asus X53U MRP-19,500/mi Price:
Asus X53U is an impressive product in its price category with is IceCool Technology that keeps the palm rest area cool, placing heat-producing components away from users. Enhanced multitasking and mobile computing capabilities are included along with the new AMD Brazos Platform. The Power4Gear automatically adjusts fan speeds for quiet computing and prolonged battery life.
JBL On Time 200P A perfect blend of a music and an alarm clock, the JBL On Time 200P ensures that you wake up to the sound of your favourite song. It plays music straight of your iPhone, iPad or MP3 Player. It is the perfect clockradio. Another cool feature is that it charges your music device while you are sleeping. It is one bedside companion that you would be glad to wake up to every morning.
JBL On Time Micro Wake up to your favourite dance number and get going with the JBL On Time Micro. With a docking connector for your music player or smart phone, this device works like charm. Weighing only 800 grams, this clockradio will ensure you don't miss an early morning appointment. Now you will be grooving in your pyjamas every morning with the JBL On Time Micro.
Fujifilm T200 The sleek and compact Fujifilm FinePix T200 is perfect for those who want a camera they can carry anywhere they go. The first model in the Fujifilm T Series, the FinePix T200 digital camera is ideal for travellers and incredibly social people. The FinePix T200 digital camera comes with a focal length of 5 - 50 mm and 35 mm equivalent focal length of 28 - 280 mm. An optical zoom of 10x and a digital zoom of 6.7x takes you closer to the subject. Equipped with a CCD image sensor and a resolution of 14 megapixels, the FinePix Camera offers wonderful crystal clear images.
Place your order @mistore.in 133 I EXHIBIT I FEBRUARY 2013
Like every month, our readers and Facebook fans were asked to comment on a topic that has been the hot talking point for that month. And this is what they came out with once the floor was thrown open.
Are smartphone cameras making point and shoot cameras redundant? With more and more smartphone makers investing more money in making their cameras better, is this ruining the party for the point-and-shoot digital cameras? Or do people still feel more comfortable a reliable digi-cam with slightly more options and a few more tricks is a better investment? Majid Surekhi
I personally feel Point and Shoot Cameras are done. I use an iPhone 4 with a 5 megapixel camera that is more than enough for my needs. At a social gathering I would not want to carry the bulk of a digicam, I would rather choose to use my smartphone. It not only is more convenient but also hassle free. The on board image editing apps make it so much easier and of course you can then upload these pictures on Facebook with ease. Which point and shoot camera offers all this?
The rapid improvement of embedded cameras in smartphones is encroaching on and threatening to the dedicated point and shoot market. People are relying less and less on dedicated cameras and relying more on their smartphones to capture those special moments. And as the image sensors within smartphones advance, as with the addition of interchangeable lenses, the need for dedicated cameras has dissipated.
I’m just getting into taking pictures with my Smartphone, so this critique is very helpful. I’ve taken pictures with my phone and Point and shoot camera, and can’t tell the difference once I upload them to the computer. So on some levels they are just as good. I do agree with you on the zoom quality, especially on my phone.
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