Sunday, May 1, 2011

Introducing Prezi - The Powerpoint Killer

The way we make PowerPoint presentations is about to change forever. Introducing online tool helps one make exciting presentations on the Internet via the Web browser or the iPad. Although the best version is paid, but a free account allows 100MB space, and would suffice a beginner

Adding text, images and videos are a child’s play, one can play around with shapes to make an exceptionally creative presentation. Once all the information is added, you can sequence it in the order of desired appearance. And wallah!! The presentation is ready.

Try it now to believe. Also check out Ted's Chris Anderson using a Prezi:

Friday, December 25, 2009

AVATAR - A Tech Perspective

There has been much hype around the movie and the technology. 60% of the movie is computer generated (CG). It is said that James Cameron (JC) waited for ten years for this technology to develop, before initiating work on the movie.

3D is not just a gimmick and is genuinely and beautifully used. Even the minutest expressions are well captured. JC used new-tech stereoscopic 3D cameras for the shoot; the movie is edited in 3D as well. Imagine the editors wearing 3D glasses at work, and editing two images for every frame, one for each eye.

The action was recorded on a sound stage called “The Volume”. This stage had motion censors on the ceiling which captured every motion of the actors. Filming and editing spanned three continents. The rushes contained only the actors with a chroma background, everything else including the tall-blue Na’vi’s are CG. JC had visualized to the very detail, the background and props in every frame. Every secne was made is low resolution and once detailed by JC it was worked in hi-def. The movie has, in many ways changed production behind the camera.

Don’t think that graphics over shadow the script; JC has splendidly used technology for story telling. One must remember that, the movie is made to push the boundaries of technology, and written only to pursue it. The 3D primitive forest as techno-Eden imagery is so potent, cool and “visionary” that it overpowers any plea for bold, fresh, and original narrative.

Is the investment in the movie worth? I would hear only laughter, if I told investors that I need Rs. 1440 Crores, ($ 300 mn) to make a movie. But it is not the first time JC has been in this position. Investors would believe his vision, and his creation. The movie grossed $ 233 mn globally at the opening weekend itself.

Is Avatar the tipping point of next-gen tech-led movies? Will the 19th century cinema evolve to more such movies? Will our kids grow up on 3D Hi-def movies?

I would end with a quote from the movie: “There are no answers, only messages”

P.S. It was indeed good to see the Na’vi to be more humans than humans.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Archos 7

Sounds like a weapon from the future, doesn’t it? In reality it is a media tablet, a travel partner. Still confused? Well, Archos 7 is a hand-held device, with which you can access the internet, media content and TV.

It has a 7 inch screen with, 800 pixel resolution and can store up-to 320 GB of images, videos, music and data. You can stay connected with the world, using the built in WiFi. This device works on a Linux OS, and can play the most common formats of images, music and video.

It has email software, which configures POP email and allows you to check and reply to mails on the go. You wouldn’t need to zoom in and out of the web pages; you can view them in full screen. It also have a lot of business application widgets, you can say that it has all the features of business need. Well it can also connect to your PC with WiFi and play contents on the PC on the device. You can even record TV shows (with the optional DVR station) and keep watching them till you like.

With this device you get, web on the go, you’re whole digital library in one device, and a TV experience. If you are ever stuck either in a traffic jam, or even in an elevator, you can have Archos 7 as daily partner.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

World War III - Bots Attack

Ever heard of Bots attack? The technical name is “Distributed Denial of Services Attack.”

Keeping it very simple, well this is how it works. A bot-neck is a network of one lakh nodes. Using software, one can launch millions of info bombs at a target node from the bot nodes, crashing all defenses, bringing the network down, thereby denying total services at the nodes.

The info-bombs can be as simple as spam, phishing, and millions of packets of simple information. These are capable of bringing down services of large and critical infrastructures such as central banks, auction website. A full-fledged attack can last for days

Bot attackers can extort hefty sums of money, for not blocking services. The website/infrastructure owners would lose transactions worth millions; if a DDOS attack is launched targeting them

When bots attack, they create ‘zombies’. These are PCs with no defense, and the software uses these nodes to send out millions of bots to the targeted nodes

These attacks are distributed, and deny services at the targeted nodes; hence they are called Distributed Denial of Services attack.

Well, it is not only a threat to national security; I’d say that the next World War will be fought online.