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This Kickstarter foot-long camera lens will give you a bug’s-eye view of the world - It also looks totally...

Posted on: Sat, 2018-08-04 - 11:30 By: admin

This Kickstarter foot-long camera lens will give you a bug’s-eye view of the world - It also looks totally wild

The camera lens manufacturers at Venus Optics have just launched their latest creation: a foot-long, skinny camera lens that’s meant to give you a macro view of the tiniest parts of the world.

The Laowa 24mm f/14 2x Macro Probe was developed to give photographers and videographers a “new perspective” and remove traditional barriers that come with using macro lenses. Traditional macro lenses aren’t a foot long, meaning that photographers need to get super close to their subject. This design allows photographers to get those clear, crisp, and close-up shots from a distance and fit their lens in tinier spaces. This is great for shooting wildlife, like tiny bugs or quick-moving animals that might be scared off if a bigger, bulkier camera gets too close.

The lens is being offered with adapters for Canon EF, Nikon F, and Sony FE mounts, as well as Arri PL.

See https://www.theverge.com/circuitbreaker/2018/8/2/17644446/macro-lens-camera-venus-optics-kickstarter

#photography


This foot-long camera lens will give you a bug’s-eye view of the world
It also looks totally wild

City of Rome begins switch to open source LibreOffice default

Posted on: Sat, 2018-08-04 - 11:04 By: admin

City of Rome begins switch to open source LibreOffice default

This month, the city of Rome has begun making LibreOffice the only available suite of office productivity tools on its workstations. The first group to switch uses office tools less than one hour per month.

Rome will uninstall the proprietary alternative gradually, depending on the amount of time that office tools are used. This transition schedule is based on measurements that took place between June to December last year.

The image shows an open padlock and the words "No Lock in" The city government decided to switch to using free and open source software in October 2016. The first step, an inventory of all desktop applications and server-based solutions, was completed in early 2017.

Requiring ICT service providers to help the city switch to open source is the key part of Rome’s migration strategy. Ms Colasanti expects that by 2020 all contracts will have been renewed in this way.

See https://joinup.ec.europa.eu/news/champions-league

#libreoffice


Champions league | Joinup
This month, the city of Rome has begun making LibreOffice the only available suite of office productivity tools on its workstations. The first group to switch uses office tools less than one hour per month. Rome will uninstall the proprietary alternative gradually, depending on the amount of time that office ...

Swarms of Instagrammers force a Canadian sunflower farm to ban all visitors

Posted on: Sat, 2018-08-04 - 10:17 By: admin

Swarms of Instagrammers force a Canadian sunflower farm to ban all visitors

If you’re on Instagram for long enough, you start to notice certain patterns emerge around types of photos: pictures in the same hot locations, framed in the same way, with the same vistas. One farm in Canada was unlucky enough to become a local Instagram obsession recently, and the increase in attention got totally out of control.

As The Globe and Mail reports, Bogle Seeds in Hamilton, Ontario had to close down its fields to all visitors following a viral image that lead to a massive increase in foot traffic of people shooting pictures of its sunflower fields. In late July, the farm was open to everyone, with the owners charging an entry fee of $7.50 to people who wanted to visit the brightly colored flowers. At first, the crowds were manageable, but by July 28th, everything had changed. After pictures of the farm went viral, an estimated 7,000 cars lined up on the roads leading to the farm.

I'm beginning to think the problem is more with people and not so much the technology. IY's much like the argument around guns: "It;'s not the guns which kill, it's the people". Sad that technology can also bring out the worst in people like the ex-Verge journalist being brutally trolled.

Thanks to some people on social media, incidents like this happen regularly: crowds taking pictures have killed wild animals (if not gotten killed by those wild animals), and previously unknown natural wonders are slowly getting overrun by people looking to impress on Instagram.

See https://www.theverge.com/2018/8/2/17644910/instagram-sunflower-farm-ban-photo


Swarms of Instagrammers force a Canadian sunflower farm to ban all visitors
When a photo cliche goes viral IRL

DevCheck is a hardware and system info app that tells you everything about your Android device

Posted on: Sat, 2018-08-04 - 00:18 By: admin

DevCheck is a hardware and system info app that tells you everything about your Android device

The XDA forums are full of developers who make lives easier for those who want to mod their phones. Whether it be an app for controlling superuser access, changing governors on your CPU, overclocking, flashing, or many other functions. DevCheck is yet another application that helps tech-savvy people find technical info about their device. It is made by XDA Recognized Developer flar2. He is the one who brought one of the best custom kernels, ElementalX, to life.

At the first screen, you can see real-time info about your device, like current CPU status, battery situation, network signal strength, RAM, and internal storage. Tapping will open up a new screen with more details. You can see the status of big and little clusters on your CPU to understand how your device handles the tasks you throw at it.

Another difference between other system info apps will make mobile photographs happy. DevCheck has the ability to list every little detail about your phone’s cameras. It shows you details like crop factor, the field of view, focal length, pixel size, and much more. Previously, if you wanted to see all these details, you had to search for it on Google. Some manufacturers don’t even list that much details about the device’s cameras.

And there are plenty more details to be displayed - see https://www.xda-developers.com/devcheck-hardware-system-information-app/


DevCheck is an Android app that tells you everything about your device
DevCheck is an app that helps you view every technical detail about your device's software and hardware. It's available for free so check it out!

WhatsApp to Begin Showing Ads from 2019 as Facebook Wants the App to Start Making Money

Posted on: Fri, 2018-08-03 - 22:29 By: admin

WhatsApp to Begin Showing Ads from 2019 as Facebook Wants the App to Start Making Money

Starting next year, WhatsApp will display ads in the Status screen as part of a service transformation that Facebook is pushing for in order to start making money out of the world’s number one mobile messaging app.

WhatsApp aims to offer more tools to businesses to get in touch with users, and the company announces new ad types that would be specifically aimed at allowing paying customers to contact you on the mobile phone.

A report from the Wall Street Journal reveals that WhatsApp will charge companies between half a penny and 9 cents for every message delivered to a potential customer. A pilot program that involved some 100 companies, including Uber and Singapore Airlines, have already been completed.

Blocking the Status ads won’t be possible, though WhatsApp says that messages from businesses will only be offered to customers who allow them. Ads will run on Facebook’s advertising system, and WhatsApp says it’s confident users will adapt to this new approach.

Well it was long expected ever since Facebook bought out WhatsApp so no surprises. Facebook itself, of course, said, in the beginning, they would never give out users' data either... Nothing is truly for free if there is a service to run. Even for open source systems as they scale larger there are hosting copsts to cover...

See https://news.softpedia.com/news/whatsapp-to-begin-showing-ads-as-facebook-wants-the-app-to-start-making-money-522227.shtml

#whatsapp


WhatsApp to Begin Showing Ads as Facebook Wants the App to Start Making Money
Ads coming to the Status feature in WhatsApp

A Service that Lets You Use Windows 10 on Any Computer or Phone Is Going Nationwide in the US - The ...

Posted on: Fri, 2018-08-03 - 20:08 By: admin

A Service that Lets You Use Windows 10 on Any Computer or Phone Is Going Nationwide in the US - The Future of Gaming?

Back at CES in January, French company Blade seemed to promise the moon. For a monthly fee, the company would give users access to a high-end Windows 10 machine, with the latest CPU from Intel and a beefy Nvidia 1080 GPU built in. The computer would be housed at a server farm, which means as long as you had an internet connection, your iOS, Android, Windows, or Mac machine could access it. The hiccup was, the service was only available in France and California.

Eight months later, Blade’s service, Shadow, is going nationwide in the U.S. The kicker? You only need a 5Mbps connection to take advantage of what Shadow offers.

If the rumors are true, streaming the contents of a powerful remote PC to your personal computer, tablet, or phone seems to be one very possible future for gaming. Nvidia already streams games to its 4K set-top box, the Nvidia Shield. Reportedly, both Sony and Microsoft are considering shipping cheap boxes that connect to remote servers for their next generation of gaming consoles, too. In June, Kotaku reported that Google was also considering a similar strategy.

Yes you'll also need a pretty good Internet link... but it is a glimpse of what may happen in the future. Everyone wants to lock consumers into a monthly paying cloud service.

See https://gizmodo.com/a-service-that-lets-you-use-windows-10-on-any-computer-1828079779

#cloud


Blade Shadow's High-End Windows 10 Remote PCs to Go U.S.-Wide

A Powerful Partnership Brings Open Annotation to EPUBs

Posted on: Fri, 2018-08-03 - 00:13 By: admin

A Powerful Partnership Brings Open Annotation to EPUBs

Hypothesis and their partners, NYU Press and NYU Libraries, the Readium Foundation, Evident Point and EPUB.js, announced in Sep 2017 the world’s first open-source, standards-based annotation capability in an EPUB viewer — or rather two EPUB viewers, because they launched with identical functionality in the two most popular open-source frameworks, Readium and EPUB.js. For the first time, publishers and others had a complete annotation solution for all their content published in all three primary digital formats: HTML, PDF and now, EPUB.

So whilst this sounded great and the ePub3 standard works well for formatting, media, etc I am really struggling to find any app that lets me annotate and highlight in ePub 3 and then read those highlights and annotations in a DIFFERENT reading app. I've tried Adobe Digital Editions, Moon+ Reader, Gitden Reader, Lithium ePub Reader, Infinity Reader, Reasily, Aldiko Book Reader, and more. They all do their thing inside their own app, but none of these annotations or notes are appearing in other ePub reader apps.

Does anyone have any ideas on an app/s that will do this between readers?

See https://web.hypothes.is/blog/epub-annotation/

#epub3 #epub #annotations


A Powerful Partnership Brings Open Annotation to EPUBs
Today, Hypothesis and our partners, NYU Press and NYU Libraries, the Readium Foundation, Evident Point and EPUB.js, are announcing the world's first open-source, standards-based annotation capability in an EPUB viewer — or rather two EPUB viewers, because we’re launching with

First National Bank tap-to-pay comes to Garmin, Fitbit watches in South Africa

Posted on: Thu, 2018-08-02 - 19:18 By: admin

First National Bank tap-to-pay comes to Garmin, Fitbit watches in South Africa

First National Bank clients who own certain Garmin and Fitbit smartwatches can now use them to “tap to pay” at retail outlets where tap-based payments are supported.

The bank said in a statement on Thursday that customers can now make payments through their Visa-based bank cards at any contactless-enabled point-of-sale device.

“To make payment, a customer simply selects the wallet feature and then taps their wearable on the contactless point of sale, just as they would when paying with their FNB Pay-enabled smartphone or their contactless card,” it said.

As a further security measure, whenever the Fitbit or Garmin device leaves your wrist, you will be required to enter your wearable passcode once placed back on your wrist in order to reactivate the functionality.

See https://techcentral.co.za/fnb-tap-to-pay-comes-to-garmin-fitbit-watches/82828/

#FNB


FNB tap-to-pay comes to Garmin, Fitbit watches - TechCentral

Visit to the Red Tin Roof Restaurant at Riebeeck Kasteel outside Cape Town

Posted on: Thu, 2018-08-02 - 17:32 By: admin

Visit to the Red Tin Roof Restaurant at Riebeeck Kasteel outside Cape Town

The restaurant is just over an hour's travel from Cape Town and we rode out on the motorcycle today as the weather was a glorius windless and sunny 20 degrees today (absolute perfect riding weather). Winter has been good for Cape Town and all the fields were either bright green or bright yellow (canola).

The restaurant was easily found and it's claim to fame is the co-owner is Jacques Pauw, author of The President's Keepers. The other more important reason was that they advertise sourcing their food locally (https://www.riebeekkasteel.co.za/index.html) and from the Country Life magazine: "Lots of yum right here...simple comfort food, slow-cooked, very South African, stylishly presented...The coolest country spot outside Cape Town"

Wellit certainly did not disappoint as the pulled lamb burgers (200g of slow-cooked and red wine-drenched shoulder of lamb) were absolutely deliscious - really tender and tasty. I had a Babylon Pinotage red wine with it that was full of body and flavour - it went particularly well witgh that lamb. The portion size left us quite full but we managed to squeeze in some peppermint tart afterwards.

The only thing that was not so great, but no fault of the restauarant, wa sthe credit card machine wass offline so we took a stroll through the town to draw cash at tyhe only ATM (which also did not accept any cards but luckily we could draw cash at the small Pick 'n Pay supermarket). Message to banks - get your act togethe rin these small towns as you are not doing your clients or tourism and favours...

#redtinroof #restaurant #riebeeckkasteel

02/08/2018


Google search will now highlight useful data journalism from news stories - promoting quality journalism...

Posted on: Thu, 2018-08-02 - 09:29 By: admin

Google search will now highlight useful data journalism from news stories - promoting quality journalism and news

Google is working with publishers to make it easier to view data journalism in search results, as announced on its blog today. It’s one of the steps Google News Initiative is taking to make data journalism more visible, with the field quickly growing across media. Over half of all newsrooms now have dedicated data journalists, and this feature aims to pinpoint the most useful results from pages containing data tables.

“Data journalism takes many forms, and it’s not always clear from the headline that there is potentially useful data within that document or story,” Google News Lab’s Simon Rogers wrote in today’s blog post. “It isn’t always easy for Google Search to detect and understand tables of data to surface the most relevant results.”

The feature is currently in pilot, so search results may not frequently turn up datasets just yet.

See https://www.theverge.com/2018/7/31/17635810/google-search-data-charts-news-initiative-propublica

#stopfakenews


Google search will now highlight useful data journalism from news stories
Making it easier to view data at a glance
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