Polyup – Making Math a Thinking Playground

Consumer Update

Math is at the center of everything we do. It’s imperative to understand the fundamentals of math for lifelong success, but it’s one of those subjects that can be daunting and challenging for young minds.

Polyup’s mission is to make math a fun learning experience, especially for its biggest naysayers.

Originally, Polyup was created by a professor and student in order to make math a fun learning process, where students from grades 3-12 can solve interactive math problems.

There are three different levels to bring math to life. The first is for students from grades 3 to 5. These students play games that will help them with subjects such as the order of operations and problem-solving.

The next level is for students from grades 6 to 8. These games are a bit more complex with games involving sequences, algorithmic thinking, and more.

Lastly, there’s a level for high school students, teaching subjects such as numerical methods, calculus, and even algorithms.

But as we said, this a fun learning experience. Polyup’s gorgeous design and interactive atmosphere lets students see the true beauty of math.

Polyup is available for free from any web device. Learn more at polyup.com today.

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NeuShield – Why Be a Victim of Ransomware?

Tech Report

Have you ever been a victim of ransomware? In case you weren’t sure, ransomware is a form of cyberhacking that tries to infect a device and hold it hostage using encryption or other means until the victim pays a ransom in exchange for access to the files or the device.

This is, unfortunately, a constant epidemic and occurs more than people realize. In fact, did you know that a company is hit by ransomware every 40 seconds? Well, if you don’t want your data to become infected, you need to look at NeuShield.

NeuShield’s patent-pending Mirror Shield technology recovers your lost data by adding a layer of protection to your existing antivirus software, allowing you to recover from undetected threats quickly.

The great thing about NeuShield is that it doesn’t just allow you to recover, but it also protects your original content and files from ever being encrypted in the first place. And if by some form, your disk is targeted, NeuShield has a Disk Wipe protection feature that fends off wipers from destroying data on your hard drive.

So, if you’re a small business or just someone who doesn’t wish to be a victim of ransomware again, make sure to check out NeuShield by heading to NeuShield.com today and giving their free version a try.

Third Reality – Simply Automate Your Home

Consumer Update

We understand how popular smart home technology is. But what if you didn’t want to go through all the complicated electrical work? That’s exactly where Third Reality comes in with their product, RealitySwitch Plus.

Third Reality is a company all about making home automation devices. The ‘Reality Switch’ is a device that they’re currently shipping and allows you to connect the switch to your Amazon devices and where it can tell it to turn your lights on or off.

But most significantly, the new device they have coming out is ‘Reality Switch Plus’ which lets you stay connected to any of the existing Amazon devices.

The most fundamental part of their solution is simple to install. And for anyone who’s buying a switch and who wants to automate their home; this can be the solution you’ve been searching for. And even better, you can totally do it yourself – no electrician or third party.

Being able to DIY certainly is less daunting, isn’t it? And though a new switch in many cases would cost you $30 or $40 for you to purchase, it would cost you an additional $100 to have it installed.

With Third Reality’s device, you can also have a remote with your app. For instance, if you’re away from the house and wish to turn the lights on or off, pull up your app and check the statues to turn them on or off remotely.

Search for Reality Switch on Amazon or donate to Reality Switch Plus’ Kickstarter today!

NewsWatch 2-27 Recap | New Gadgets & Apps

If you weren’t able to watch our episode on 2/27, we’ve covered some of the major things that you’ve missed.

Be sure to also subscribe to our NewsWatch YouTube channel so you don’t miss future recaps and full segments from our AMC Network episodes.

 

Instagram Drops New Features and Kills One

Courtesy of Endgadget.

Courtesy of endgadget.

By: Hazel Lovely Saunders

A couple of weeks ago Instagram released a surprising new feature called Stories, which allows you to share all the moments throughout your day. Similar to rival app Snapchat, stories consists of mini video clips or pictures stay up for 24 hours, appearing as a mini slideshow or video series. Facebook, Instagram’s parent company, attempted to purchase Snapchat a couple of years ago. They couldn’t buy the app, but that doesn’t mean that they couldn’t integrate their ideas in their app.

But Instagram released a feature that Snapchat doesn’t have: zooming. This gives the users the ability to zoom in on other users’ photos and videos by pinching the post. Unfortunately, this feature is only available for iPhone users, but they say it will be released soon on Android.

The new zoom feature allows marketers to get even more creative with content on Instagram. Instead of watching a video in one perspective, users can now zoom around and choose a certain focus to view.

Courtesy of Tech Crunch.

Instagram will also take advantage of the new iPhone 7 plus dual camera. Courtesy of Tech Crunch.

The problem with this new feature is that Instagram images content can look grainy if you zoom in too much. But this isn’t stopping users from using this new feature—there’s even a trending hashtag about Instagram’s latest addition.

These features are here to stay, but the photo map feature is on its way out. This classic feature allowed you to see a map of where a users’ photos were taken (if you allowed it). Instagram said in a statement to Mashable, “Photo Map was not widely used, so we’ve decided to remove the feature and focus on other priorities.”

So what are your thoughts? Are you sad to see the Photo-Map feature go? Or are you happy that you can zoom? Tweet us your thoughts @NewsWatchTV.

Jon Favreau Creates a Virtual Reality World with ‘Gnomes & Goblins’

Courtesy of The Hollywood Reporter.

Courtesy of The Hollywood Reporter.

By: Hazel-Lovely Saunders

Technology and entertainment are merging faster than ever with the latest tool—virtual reality. Filmmakers and other creators are taking on this tool to create videos, games, news and more. Created by director Jon Favreau, known for Chef and The Jungle Book, is the latest fusion of entertainment and tech. It’s called Gnomes & Goblins.

A preview of the project is being released on Thursday, Sept. 8 for free on the HTC Vive VR headset. The preview of the project is set in an enchanted forest, a similar setting to The Jungle Book, where you act as the lead in the film. During the preview you meet a tiny goblin and befriend him. The way you interact with the goblin determines your path in where your story goes. As the main character you will be free to wander and explore at your own pace.

Cpurtesy of Road to VR.

Courtesy of Road to VR.

“There’s people who come from a gaming background who see the gaming potential [of VR], and there’s people who come from a cinema background that see how they expand it,” Favreau says. “But to me everything in between is the Oklahoma land grab. You can stake out a little piece of land in the middle of this that’s unique.”

The preview of Gnomes & Goblins takes about 10 minutes to play but eventually the idea is what Favreau describes as “Like Disneyland. Where you build more and more out.” If the preview launch becomes successful, he plans to release a more built-out version of the project. Check out the preview below:

Let us know what you think about this new Favreau project. What other films would you like to see become part of a VR world? Tweet us, like us on Facebook, and don’t forget to stay updated with weekly articles here.

Five Entertainment Tech Trends You Should Know

vr1

By Hazel-Lovely Saunders

Creativity is the working body in the entertainment industry. And with recent advances in technology, creatives are finding insane ways to incorporate tech into entertainment. From virtual reality headsets in movie theaters to CGI in Fast 7. You never know what new technology will be up next for the industry.

  1. Virtual Reality (VR)

Virtual reality (VR) is a computer technology that uses software-generate realistic images, sounds, and other sensations to channel a real environment.

The Oculus Rift, a virtual reality headset, accumulated $2.5m in funding on Kickstarter and was available for the blockbuster film “Interstellar” to let audiences interact with the movie’s spacecraft and explore areas in the film. Hopefully we get to watch all movies on VR.

 

VR isn’t only popular in watching movies, but it’s the new trend in gaming. You’ll find VR gaming headsets from all the tech giants. For example, Samsung released their Gear VR while Sony is in the works for a headset for PlayStation 4. Additionally, Valve Software and HTC are working on Vive.

  1. Augmented Reality (AR)

Now augmented reality (AR) is found in the latest addition, Pokémon Go. This technology blurs the line between what’s real and what’s computer generated. Basically a mix of virtual reality, computer-generated environments, and what’s in the real world in real time.

In Pokémon Go players use their mobile device’s GPS capability to capture, battle and train virtual created, who appear on the screen as if they were in the same real world.

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But Pokémon Go isn’t the only one in the AR arena, Microsoft is currently working on a high-profile HoloLens project, and Apple CEO Tim Cook confirmed that the company is working on augmented reality.

  1. High Dynamic Range

High-dynamic range imaging (HDRI) is a high dynamic range (HDR) technique used in imagining and photography to reproduce a greater dynamic range. It’s better visual experience with greater contrast—highlights, brighter colors and a lifelike images.

Viterra_Plant_Edmonton_Alberta_Canada_01

An example of HDRI is 4K TV. This tech is on the rise, but it probably needs to be watched on a huge TV to notice the difference. This tech can also be found in compact cameras like the new Nikon DL series feature 4K video. Although 4K can be very crisp it takes a lot of memory storage and a strong hard drive to import videos.

  1. Real-Time Cloud Rendering

Cloud rendering is a fast process of creating constant-shape clouds for games and flight simulators. Basically rendering of clouds in real-time. This technology can be used to render complex game image son mobile devices. Major studios use this to cut visual effects costs.

Atomic Fiction’s Conductor is in the lead for these visual effects technique and helped the visual effects for the movie, “The Walk”.

  1. Light Field

A light field camera captures information about the light field emanating from a specific scene; that includes, the intensity of light of the scene and the direction that the light rays are traveling in space. This gives the photographer flexibility to shoot first and choose the focus, aperture and settings after.

This is a time-saver for film shoots. Instead of multiple cameras for different focus points, this will capture it all in one shot. You can edit and change the settings after each shot to satisfy which image you want.

Ars Electronica 2013 - Lytro light-field photography

Ars Electronica 2013 – Lytro light-field photography

Companies Otoy and Lytro offer light-field capturing devices. Other companies like nVidia is also researching this field.

Join the conversation and let us know your thoughts and comments below. Don’t forget to follow us on Twitter and like our Facebook page.

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