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Monthly Archives: April 2018

About Facial Recognition

The said technology consists of four different stages as explained below.

1. The Capturing stage involves the collection of a sample using the video equipment. This sample could be an image/footage from a busy metro station or of the audience at a baseball match.

2. The Extraction is more unique and focuses on individuals instead of the whole crowd. A template is created with the unique data.

3. The Comparison stage weighs up the earlier mentioned template with a precompiled database.

4. The Match/ Non-Match stage implicates making a final decision that whether or not the template matches with any entry in the already existing database. This is achieved with the use of various complex algorithms.

Facial biometrics can be consolidated at any place, where you can find modern-day HD security cameras. The Police and other law enforcement agencies use these systems to locate people of interest by scanning video footage captured at different places. Other deployments of this incredible technology include border control applications and consumer applications like banking and payment gateways.

Thus, wherever there is a need to track an individual or a group of individuals on the basis of their facial appearance, “recognition through faces” can be used in all such environments.

This technology is no more just about dealing with access controls and individual verifications; it can do a lot to assemble huge demographic data also. Facial Recognition is on its way to prove its worth into other arenas as well, like retail industry, social platforms, banking transactions and public places.

Advancements in facial biometrics have come neck to neck with the latest trends. Like the very famous ‘selfie’ trend is being used for facial recognition methods. Yes, you read it right! MasterCard’s “Selfie-Verification”, gave the online payment methods a new tangent this year. Customers get through the whole payment process with the simple use of biometrics like selfies rather than using PINs, passwords or OTPs. Online transactions were never been this easier, and fun! As much as the use of facial biometrics makes the payment process faster, it also makes it more reliable. It mitigates the risk of fraud and strengthens the payment ecosystems.

This is not limited to the online monetary transactions only. The said technology has found its ways into social platforms too, such as Facebook. The brilliant brains of Facebook are seeking to organize rich image data and identify people captured in an image. So, tagging everyone in the big family photograph would be a bit easier!

Music Can Heal Your Mind and Soul

Music promotes cognition.

Music is not just a powerful abstract. It has the ability to enhance specific brain functions and amazingly can make someone smarter. Wow! Science has revealed that listening to music can enhance reasoning prowess, improve literacy and reading skills, and mathematical skills.

What if you’re not a musician? That question might come to your mind, right? Well, even if you’re not a musician, you can still get the perks or positive effects of music. As a matter of fact, senior citizens enjoy listening to music and have dramatically showed augmented processing speed and enhanced episodic memory. There are also studies that proved that listening to a background music helps increase the cognitive and productivity performance of individuals doing tasks.

Music astonishingly helps improve memory.

Our brain is a made up of interconnected nerves which can be activated to link up with long-term memory. There are also specific points in the brain that are connected to episodic or autobiographical memories and emotions – all can be activated when familiar music melodies are heard. That’s why music is incredibly helpful to adults.

Listening to music can dramatically improve motor and reasoning skills.

Music is not only beneficial for adults; it can also help kids to learn using several ways. There are studies which revealed that children who underwent for 3 years and more music training experience can perform far better to those who didn’t. That shows how important it is to learn an instrument in auditory aptitude and great motor abilities.

We Fear Personal Robots

The conversation comes up over and over again – regardless of venue. Many people have a very real sense of dread and fear related to robots invading their lives. Similar to popular Star Wars movies, imaginations are going to the outer limits where no man has dared to venture. Perhaps the time has come to remind everyone to simply relax, as robots are not going to take over the world or displace millions of workers. The technology really is in its infancy stages, with limited capabilities at this point. However, advancement is a linear process where simple robotic assignments are mastered initially before moving forward to more complex duties. From a development standpoint, we are still a long distance from having technology that simulates human executive functioning and socialization. We are, however, closer to having robotic assistants capable of performing a number of tasks once considered impossible.

In order to gain some perspective on the anxiety related to robots in our daily lives, it would be prudent to look back at history. During the early years of the 20TH century, Henry Ford invented the Model T automobile. Mr. Ford’s goal was to build an affordable dependable vehicle that could meet the needs of the common man. Ostensibly, he achieved that goal as 15 million vehicles sold between 1908 and 1927, when the model was discontinued. Importantly, we must not overlook the introduction of the assembly line, which revolutionized work production.

We can safely surmise there was tremendous emotional upheaval with the automobile disrupting sales for the horse and buggy industry. Jobs were indeed at stake, yet society adjusted to those industry changes and many prospered due to the new economy. Further, the assembly line must have caused a great deal of consternation as the pressure to “mass produce” was undoubtedly met with resistance. The order of the day was experiencing culture shock that shook daily life in 1908 at its very core. Yet, society moved pass its fear of new technology,with trepidation, slowly gaining trust and confidence in the early version of the automobile.

Massive changes affecting how we live, work, and relate to one another has always invoked a degree of fear and uncertainty. There are many unanswered questions related to robots and how they will function among us, and how much autonomy they actually possess. These are concerns programmers must address in the quest to design machines that serve to increase our personal productivity and enhance quality of life. We would be better served in finding ways by which robots could be used to assist the elderly, those with disabilities, seniors suffering from Alzheimer’s, and other vulnerable members of society.

Our apprehensions are natural and there are many questions that remain surrounding issues such as jobs, safety, and privacy. However, taking a myopic view does not mitigate the serious challenges facing the growing autistic adult population. The world they are stepping into as adults is indeed filled with peril and uncertainty- but also unprecedented opportunities. Introducing technology into the lives of underserved members of the community can bring tremendous fulfillment, hope, and changed fortunes. Importantly, the same tenuous atmosphere of change existed in 1908. We have the choice of being paralyzed by fear, or taking the leap of faith required to embrace the future.

Audio PED

Now most Bluetooth headsets equipped with the camera available on Amazon are dubbed “spy headsets” and there is a whole variety of them available with price ranging from $30-90. But, AudioPED is a lot more than just a Spy cam or even a Bluetooth headset as it has basic health monitoring sensors as well. I managed to find one headset that came close to it; The Ctronics Hidden Wearable Spy Camera HD that costs $90. As you can easily predict, the price increases with an increase in memory size, functionality and the camera quality. Now there is no concrete price tag from the team right now, but it is widely reported to be around $109 which is a lot more than the other Bluetooth devices but let’s look at the specs of the new Bluetooth handset and see if it’s really worth the hefty number of dollars!

Sound

Since these are basically Bluetooth headsets, it is important to start off with the primary function: sound. The Audio PED offers a top-of-the-line quality sound to its users, and it can be streamed directly via the internet instead of storing it on the device itself. This feature is absent in the competitor as it relies on internal storage for all the songs and sounds. Its storage is also a notch above with a 32 GB card support compared to the maximum of 8 GB being offered by Ctronics Hidden Spy Camera that comes very close in cost.

Audio PED also has an intricate noise-cancelling system so that your calls aren’t interrupted by nearby noise. It is not currently on offer in any Bluetooth headset we could find so it is a big plus for the new device.

Video Recording and Battery

1080p HD video recording is offered by both Audio PED and the Ctronics device. Video recording capability is the prime feature of both devices, and there is nothing separating them on video quality. However, Ctronics device only offers up to 1.5 hours of video recording in a single charge while Audio PED has heavy-duty lipo batteries on both sides. They ensure you get extended hours of playback and video recording on the device with up to 16 hours of playback possible.

Bluetooth Connectivity

Audio PED has the unique function of being able to connect via to Bluetooth to several devices at once including your laptop, smartphone or even iPod. This feature is absent in the Ctronics device and any other Bluetooth headset I have come across under $200.

Sensors

Now here is where Audio PED takes a definite edge over its rival. As part of its added functionality, it can act as a perfect health monitoring companion by measuring the intensity of UV rays when you are travelling in the Sun. This will help you avoid these dangerous rays and have less skin related problems later on. None of the headsets in the similar category offers UV sensing as they are more focused on the “Spy” side of things.

Touchscreen

Audio PED comes with a touchscreen that shows the track name and displays the tracks. Ctronics device doesn’t have a touchscreen at all and relies on buttons all the time for navigation. Audio PED is also quite compact compared to the Ctronics one despite having a touchscreen.

Companion App

Most of the competing headphones including the Ctronics device are a plug and play matter and connect via USB. A companion app for such a simple device makes sense, but Audio PED isn’t a simple Bluetooth headset; It has Wi-Fi connectivity, smart sensors, extended battery and even a touchscreen so it comes with its own killer app that is both fun to use and extremely useful and simple to boot.