Wearable Technology Could Change the Way Athletes Train

Wearable Technology Could Change the Way Athletes Train

Wearable Technology – The Game Changer in Fitness and Sports

Whether it is at the elementary level or even the professionals in sports, the wearable technology is proving to be a game changer with regards to fitness and sports.

At the professional level, the players are using the wearable technology during their practice sessions to measure, monitor and take their performance to the next level. It is a very useful technology as far as the risk of injury to the athletes is concerned.

The athletes can learn more about their bodies from the data that is obtained from the wearables.

It is not only the watch on the wrist, but other wearables too that are being developed by the companies to gather more information to enhance the performance of the athletes.

Catapult Sports which is a Chicago based company has developed the Catapult which is helping in football training. It has a GPS tracker that is worn on the back and a strap on the chest which help the coaches to get important info during the practice sessions. The data of each player is useful to determine the player’s work rates, their game and practice schedules and rehabilitation in case of injury.

In the field of basketball, the wearable technology, Shot Tracker comes with a sensor and an app to help the players to track their shots. The sensor clips onto the basketball net while the shooting is monitored by the wristband. This wearable helps the player in identifying the mistakes with regard to skill and correcting them, thus giving him a complete coaching including his goals and workouts.

Some of the other wearable technology that has been developed include heart rate-monitoring sports bras and T-shirts as well as soccer balls to monitor the speed, distance, trajectory and rotation. Sports, is a form of entertainment and the fans would love to be engaged with the whole scenario of seeing and feeling what the athlete is actually going through in that situation.  The heart rate of the car racers in dangerous situations and power metrics of cyclists can be experienced. This makes it more interesting for the fans.

On the other hand, there is also a cause of concern, of how the wearable technology can be used to track an athlete’s schedule and life when he is off the field. There should be a line drawn as regards the privacy and security of the athletes. Though the players and the coaches want to be at the top of their game, there is also a concern that the wearable technology should not breach the thin line between the personal and professional lives.

With development in wearable technology, as more parameters of an athlete are tracked, any decline in a player’s performance can also see a pay decrease. An athlete may be doing well, but any slight changes in the data related to injury history, patterns related to age can also result in a lower pay package.

From monitoring the training and practice sessions of the athletes to recovery of the athlete in case of an injury, the wearables are proving to be a game changer as far as fitness and sports are concerned. The wearable technology will help the coaches, trainers and general managers to get the maximum performance from their players.

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Google’s Art Selfies Are the Talk of Twitter

Google’s Art Selfies Are the Talk of Twitter

Google art selfies has just become the talk of the town on Twitter

Google keeps reinventing the simple things into a fabulous tool for millions of internet users worldwide. It has debut a new feature in the lacklustre Google Arts & Culture app which helps in in instantly transforming user’s selfies into an incredible work of an art and effectively calling it art selfies. Google has launched this app almost two years ago but it never became as popular as other but bringing this update everyone is flocking to download this app thereby making it an overnight hit on global scale. Art selfies has struck a chord with almost everyone across the globe regardless of age, ethnicity, religious or political inclination.

This new feature helps in producing art selfies wherein users takes their snap and it is then compared with some of the great art of the world. Google has brought this feature in order to introduce the world with the fine art in a more constructive way.

Taking art selfies is in vogue

Google came with the idea of turning selfies into art quite a while back and this feature was brought to the Google Arts & Culture app in the middle of December just before the holiday season. However it took sometime before it was discovered by the netizens globally. Once people started uploading art selfies on the social media platform like Facebook and Twitter this app shot to its prominence and very soon it made its way into the top charts. It shouldn’t come as a surprise that this app is no. 1 on both the Google Play Store and iOS App Store.

Art selfies is available for everyone

Google takes some time in launching the update on its app globally. Even the Android OS update is released based on the specific regions and same goes true for this recent update as it isn’t available in every other nation or cities on global basis. A number of users are left unhappy and even angry in some cases as they can’t be the part of this global phenomenon of taking art selfies.

Take a virtual tour of museums

Google had launched this app way in the November of 2015 which can aim of offering virtual tours of the museums to the users. Currently it has more than 1000 museums in it along with that it has its own website as well which provides museum tours to the users.

It is a crafty way of taking people into some of the renowned museums in the world from the comfort of their house or office or anywhere they are. Apart from the virtual tours this app also offers some subtle art education to the users which don’t appear to be preachy or boring at all.

This app gladly asks users to take a selfies and search among thousands of artworks on the global scale to check which resembles close to you. Users can take art selfies right from their smartphone camera after which Google will search the best possible resembling art work.

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Google Launches New IT Course, Offers Access to Jobs and Scholarships

Google Launches New IT Course, Offers Access to Jobs and Scholarships

Google Launched – IT Support Program

Google together with online learning giant Coursera had recently revealed a new certificate program to train Americans for entry level IT jobs inclusive of those who did not have college degrees. The company has mentioned that they will be filling the requirements in the tech world.  The statistics of Coursera had cited that presently there seems to be around 150,000 unfiled support jobs only in the US.  Initially the IT Support program which will be launched all across the world would be offering courses only in English with 64 hours of coursework in total.  Students are expected to complete the same in 8 to 12 months. The course for the Coursera platform is written by Googlers to impart and then test across six vital areas of customer support namely, troubleshooting as well as customer service, networking, system administration, automation, operating systems together with security where no earlier IT experience is essential.  Moreover it also links the participants with huge employers such as Bank of America and Wal-Mart who have been on the lookout for workers talented in basic IT skills. This online learning initiative called the Google IT Support Professional Certificate charges $49 per month through Coursera.

Support Workers – Footing in U.S. Economy

However for a limited period, Google has stated that it would pay those costs for 10,000 participants. The IT initiative is said to be a part of a huge $1 billion attempt by Google to support workers to obtain their footing in a U.S. economy disrupted by technology, aimed on the skills and education. This effort has come up at a time when Google together with the other tech giants have been attempting to repel the increasing criticism regarding their consequence on society and the workforce. As per a Google executive leading the initiative, Natalie Van Kleef Conley, the new courses have sprung out of the own experience of the company in an effort of locating people for unfilled IT positions. She had stated in an interview with Fortune that the lessons developed by Google’s employee had been targeted at veterans in particular, refugees and lower income communities. She further added that the IT programs would evade other job-training initiative which often does little to place people in the workforce, in part because Google and Coursera are working directly with employers looking for skills provided by the program.

Gateway in Tech Labour Force

Google had mentioned in a blogpost that once people tend to complete the certificate, they have the choice to share their information with the top employers directly, inclusive of Bank of America, Wal-Mart,GE Digital, Sprint, PNC Bank, Infosys, TEKSystems and UPMC together with Google who tend to be interested in hiring IT support talent. Coursera CEO Jeff Maggioncalda on the other hand informed Fortune that online learning has enhanced dramatically recently and that it is a misconception to presume that Internet-based course tend to be inferior in comparison to campus-based lessons. He also mentioned that Coursera together with Google that had worked in partnership in the past have been attempting to ensure that theirITcurriculum does not tend to be stale or obsolete and the program should support the participants in gaining good job openings. He further added that IT program could be a gateway in the tech labour force wherein one could progress from all types of careers.

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Honda to Introduce 3E Robotics Concept at CES 2018

Honda to Introduce 3E Robotics Concept at CES 2018

As robotics is gaining momentum in technology, Honda has showcased the 3E Robotics Concept at CES 2018. The Head of Honda says that Robotics will not hamper people’s lives, but on the contrary will enhance it. Honda has unveiled four Mobility and Companionship Robots. The Honda 3E Robotics Concept is playing a great role in understanding people’s needs, assisting them and making their lives better.

Honda 3E (Empower, Experience, Empathy) Robotics Concept brings forth a vision which will assist people in various ways, such as disaster management, learning to become empathetic and even in recreation. They have envisioned a society where robotics and AI can together better the lives of society.

Mobile Power Pack World

Along with the 3E Robotics Concept, Honda has even come out with the Mobile Power Pack World, which has a portable, interchangeable battery pack for electric vehicles and a recharging system for home usage, recreation and in cases of natural disasters. The Mobile Power Pack World will showcase a battery exchange idea that can be used to store and charge power packs. It showcases a wide range of utility, accessibility and convenience of renewable energy.

The 3E Robotics Concept

3E-A18 :-  This is a companion robotics concept that will show compassion to humans by various facial expressions.

3E-B18 :- This is a chair-type mobility concept that is designed for indoor as well as outdoor use.

3E-C18 :- This is an electric mobility concept providing multi functional cargo space.

3E-D18 :- This is an autonomous off road vehicle concept along with AI to assist people in various  activities.

Honda 3E (Empower, Experience, Empathy) Robotics Concept

‘Empower’ Robotic Concept :- The 3E-D18 concept will have wide ranging usage in industries that include search and rescue operations, construction, firefighting and agriculture. The robot has sensors and GPS to follow the commands of its users.

The 3E-B18 mobility concept is a cart cum buggy with a tight turning circle that can be used indoors as well as outdoors. It empowers people to be mobile in various situations and also enables them to ascend and descend slopes.

‘Experience’ Robotic Concept

The 3E-C18 robot has blinking eyes on its display and is box-shaped for carrying purpose. This robot recognizes human emotions. It can interact with human beings, learn from them and operate autonomously.

‘Empathy’ Robotic Concept

The 3E-A-18 robot can understand human emotions. They help to provide for the needs of the users. They can act as care givers and companions of humans.

The Honda Xcelerator Program

The Honda Xceleraor program is a partnership of Honda with 6 startup companies. The startup companies include BRAIQ, DeepMap, DynaOptics, EXO Technologies, Tactual Labs and WayRay. They will be funded by Honda to develop prototypes and receive support from Honda in the business and technology areas.

The Honda Xcelerator program will focus on AI, Human Machine Interface, Energy Management, Personal Mobility and Robotics.

Honda 3E Robotics Concept focuses mainly on robotics, mobility and energy management. Honda intends pursuing its goals, in collaboration with its partners. They envision robotics as a field of multiple devices working together to form a system whereby people can expand their life’s potential.

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A New Way to Store Thermal Energy

A New Way to Store Thermal Energy

Thermal Storage – Phase Change Material – PCM

Researchers at MIT have developed a new concept in the form of new chemical composite providing a substitute of storing heat from the sun or any other source during the day in a type of thermal battery.  This could release the heat whenever required for instance in the case of cooking or heating after dark.  A common method to thermal storage is to utilise it as a phase change material – PCM where input heat tends to melt the material and its phase change from solid to liquid stores energy.

When the PCM is cooled back down lower than its melting point, it is inclined to turn back to solid wherein the point of stored energy is released as heat.  There are several instances of these materials comprising of waxes or fatty acids utilised for low temperature applications as well as molten salts utilised at high temperatures.

However presently PCMs tend to need a great amount of insulation and are inclined to pass through that phase change temperature wildly thereby dropping their stored heat comparatively quickly.  On the contrary the new system tends to utilise molecular switches which alters the shape with reaction to light.  When integrated into the PCM, the phase-change temperature of the hybrid material could be accustomed with light enabling the thermal energy of the phase change to be maintained well lower than the melting point of the original material.

Fatty Acids/Organic Compound  for Thermal Energy Storage

The new discovery by MIT postdocs Grace Hans and Huashan Li together with Professor Jeffrey Grossman have been reported in the journal Nature Communications.  Grossman has explained that the trouble with thermal energy is that it is hard to hold on to it.  His team then created what is essentially add-ons for the purpose of traditional phase change material or `little molecules which tend to undergo structural change when the light is said to shine on them.

He further added that the trick had been to locate a method of integrating these molecules with conventional PCM materials in order to release the stored energy as heat, when needed. He also mentioned that there were several applications which would be useful in storing thermal energy in a way that enables you to activate it whenever essential.

This was achieved by the researchers by merging the fatty acids with organic compound which are inclined to response to a pulse of light.  With the help of this method, the light-sensitive component is said to change the thermal properties of the other component that stores as well as discharges its energy. Hybrid material tends to melt when it is heated and thereafter when exposed to ultraviolet light; it tends to remain melted after it has been cooled back.

Solidification & Super-Cooling , Method for Thermal Storage

Thereafter when activated by anther pulse of light, the material re-solidifies and returns back the thermal phase-change energy.  Grossman, who is the Morton and Claire Goulder and Family Professor in Environmental Systems and also a professor of materials science and engineering, had stated that by integrating a light-activated molecule in the traditional image of latent heat a new type of control knob for properties like melting, solidification and super-cooling is added. According to Hans, the system could make use of any source of heat and not just solar.

Readiness of waste heat is extensive from industrial processes to solar heat as well as heat coming from vehicles which is generally wasted.  Connecting some of that waste could offer a means of recycling the heat for beneficial applications. Hans has explained that technically they are installing a new energy barrier so that the stored heat does not get released instantly.

He further mentioned that the energy tends to remain for a longer period till the optical trigger is activated, in its chemically stored system.  The stored heat, in its initial small scale lab version, had shown that it tends to stay steady for around 10 hours while a device of identical size storing heat directly would dispel it within a few minutes.

Thermal Energy Density – Significant

There is no fundamental reason as to why the same cannot be tuned to move higher. Grossman stated that in its preliminary proof-of-concept method, the temperature change or super-cooling which was accomplished for thermal storage material could go up to 10 degrees C (18 F) and they anticipate to still go higher.  Hans states that in this version the energy density is quite significant even though a conventional phase-change material is used.

The material tends to store around 200 joules per gram which according to her is very good for any organic phase-change material.  According to her, people have already shown interest in utilising this for cooking in rural India.  Such methods could be used in drying agricultural crops or for space heating.  Grossman had commented that their interest in this work was to portray a proof of concept though they were of the belief that there is plenty of potential for utilising light-activated materials to hijack the thermal storage properties of phase change materials.

Storing Thermal Energy – Scope of Prospective Applications

Junqia Wu, professor of materials science and engineering at the University of California at Berkeley who was not involved in the study, stated that this is a highly creative research, where the key is that the scientists mingle a thermally driven phase-change material with a photo-switching molecule, in order to build energy barrier to stabilize the thermal energy storage.  He further stated that he was of the opinion that the work is significant since it provides a practical way of storing thermal energy that had been challenging in the past.

The design of MIT team for storing thermal energy had scope of prospective applications and ultimately the technology can offer a solution for people in developing countries which do not have a traditional power grid.  Besides absorbing heat from the Sun the system has the capability of harnessing water energy from industrial procedures which means that it could absorb the energy released as heat from heavy machinery and thereby release that energy later to heat a living space. The work had been aided by the Tata Centre for Technology and Design within the Energy Initiative of MIT.

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