Remove obstructions from roads, orders L-G

 

Delhi Lieutenant-Governor Anil Baijal on Tuesday directed authorities to remove encroachments on 29 major roads.

These roads include the stretch from ITO to Vikas Marg, M. B. Road cut to IGNOU crossing, Khajuri Chowk to Chilla border on Pusa Road, Nizamuddin to Badarpur Flyover on Mathura Road, Aurobindo Marg, C.D.R. Chowk to petrol pump on Mehrauli-Gurgaon Road, Sarita Vihar red light to Kalindi Kunj Flyover, Chirag Dilli crossing to Savitri Flyover and Vijay Nagar to Burari.

The L-G also asked all civic bodies to crackdown on temporary encroachments such as parked vehicles, and penalise contractors of local bodies who were allowing such parking on roads.

The decision was taken at a high-level meeting chaired by Mr. Baijal and attended by Public Works Department Minister Satyendar Jain, Chief Secretary M.M. Kutty and Special Commissioner of Police (Traffic) Ajay Kashyap.

 Image result for lg

Three-week deadline

The move comes within a week of the Delhi High Court ordering removal of encroachment from pavements on a permanent basis.

The L-G has directed each agency concerned to draw up an action plan within three days to remove encroachment from roads. He also ordered that removal of encroachments and road blocks be videographed.

Mr. Baijal directed all agencies to finish the work within three weeks.

“The L-G directed the Urban Development Department to be the nodal department by creating a special cell, which will monitor stretch-wise action taken by the local bodies on a weekly basis,” the L-G Office said in a statement.

Sony’s New G-Series Solid State Drives for Professional Video Recorders Launched in India

 

HIGHLIGHTS
The SSDs come with 10 years of lifespan
The new drives have data protection technology
The new G-series drives offer read speeds up to 550Mbps
Sony on Thursday launched its new G-series solid state drives, SV-GS96 and SV-GS48, in India. The new SSDs from the company are meant for the storage needs of professional video recorders and will be made available in the third week of May. The SV-GS96 SSD comes with a storage capacity of 960GB and SV-GS48 comes with 480GB of storage. The storage drives have been priced at Rs. 47,500 and Rs. 25,500 respectively.

The new G-series solid state drives achieve read speeds up to 550Mbps and have been claimed to have 10 years of lifespan, as per company’s claims. “Using Sony’s Error Correction Code technology, the 960GB G Series SSD achieves up to 2400 TBW (terabytes written), while the 460GB drive can reach 1200 TBW, resulting in less frequent replacement and increased ROI. 2400 TBW translates to about 10 years of use for the SV-GS96, if data is fully written to the drive and average of five times per week,” the company said in its release.Sony's New G-Series Solid State Drives for Professional Video Recorders Launched in India

Notably, Sony says that while data write speeds usually drop suddenly for other SSDs after repeated re-write cycles, the new G-series drives feature a built-in technology that prevent these speeds from slowing down.
The SV-GS96 and SV-GS48 storage drives come with data protection technology that has been claimed to keep the content secure and intact, even in case of sudden power failures.

“Building on the reliability synonymous with Sony’s Professional Media products, the new SSDs are a solid option for respective video recorders, offering videographers stable high-speed capabilities, a sense of security and lower cost of ownership due to their longer life,” the company said.

The new Sony G-series solid state drives will be made available across all Sony Center and other major electronic stores across India. Further, the drives will come with 10 years of warranty from the company.

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Tags: Sony G-series SSD Launch, SV-GS96, SV-GS48, Sony SSD Launch, Solid State Drives, Cameras, Entertainment, India

 

Canadian firm’s fleet-tracking service ‘Radar’ has made it a market darling again

 

A visit to trucking firm Titanium Transportation helps explain why BlackBerry’s stock is once again a darling in Canadian markets, having soared 70% in two months.

Nestled in an industrial area some 50 kilometres north of Toronto, the trucker is an early adopter of a new BlackBerry fleet-tracking service known as Radar, which uses $400 boxes to collect and transmit information on movement, temperature and physical contents of Titanium’s 1,300 truck trailers.

Efficiency gains tied to Radar should allow Titanium to get maximum utilization of its fleet, positioning it to cut the number of trailers by 5% and also reduce labour costs, company executive Marilyn Daniel told Reuters.

“Time is everything in our world,” she said. “Being able to tell a driver where exactly a trailer is as opposed to having a driver search through a yard for sometimes hours has been a definite improvement.”

Radar is emblematic of BlackBerry chief executive John Chen’s strategy for turning around the Canadian icon, by steering the company away from consumer electronics and back to its roots of selling products to businesses.

Industrial customers

Beyond Radar, BlackBerry is also betting on other types of software for industrial customers. It is leveraging its QNX subsidiary’s software foothold deep inside car infotainment consoles to expand into self-driving technology, while promoting its cybersecurity software and services to thwart increased threats from hacking.

BlackBerry’s stock rallied after it showed signs of progress in quarterly earnings results at the end of March, followed by news in April of a nearly $1 billion cash windfall from arbitration with Qualcomm expected to fund future investments in growth. That comes in the face of an expected revenue decline to below $1 billion this year for the first time since 2004. At its smartphone peak, BlackBerry had annual sales of $20 billion.

Among the recent BlackBerry bulls are institutional investors such as Nokota Management, which took a new position with almost 4.8 million shares in the first quarter, and Oppenheimer Funds, which added 3.3 million more shares to its existing 4 million share stake, according to U.S. securities filings.

Iridian Asset Management and Connor, Clark & Lunn Investment Management, two of BlackBerry’s biggest shareholders, each raised their stakes by around a quarter as of the end of March. Nokota did not respond to requests for comment, while the others all declined to discuss their stakes in BlackBerry.

The strategy is not without risks. BlackBerry faces challenges entering the telematics market, where analysts say rivals include Omnitracs, Teletrac Navman, Tomtom NV , Trimble Inc and U.S. telecommunications giant Verizon Communications Inc.

Verizon last year paid some $2.4 billion to buy GPS vehicle tracking firm Fleetmatics Group Plc.

Radar “is not a unique and earth-shattering product,” said Nicholas Farhi, a partner at OC&C Strategy Consultants who advises companies on optimising logistics operations.

That’s why some investors advise caution, saying it is too soon to figure out how to properly value the new BlackBerry offerings.

“It’s not the type of situation you can justify from a valuation standpoint,” said Tim Ghriskey, chief investment officer at Solaris Asset Management, which manages more than $1.5 billion and exited the stock a decade ago, when BlackBerry phones were still dominant. “It is all about hope and promise.”

 

This week in games: Mass Effect’s downfall, CD Projekt’s extortion, E3 rumors and more

 

E3 starts…tomorrow, so the “wrap-up” part of our weekly news wrap-up is more of a theoretical end to the week than anything else. We’ll be here at 12 p.m. Pacific on Saturday to start our coverage of EA’s press conference, and then it’s six days of straight gaming from there. If our E3 expectations and predictions come true, Microsoft will show off more Scorpio, Ubisoft will dump another Assassin’s Creed on us, and on, and on.

This week leading up to it was all about the teases, the trailers, and the leaks. It looks like we’ll see an XCOM 2 expansion soon, Hideo Kojima dropped a cryptic Death Stranding tease, and…there’s a new Bubsy?

In non-E3 news, there’s a scathing indictment of Mass Effect: Andromeda’s development woes, courtesy of Kotaku. Sources claim most of the game was developed in just the last eighteen months, and there’s more dirt where that came from.

This is gaming news for June 5 through 9.

Downtime

Determined not to watch any E3 coverage this weekend? Or maybe you’re just looking for something to do between press conferences? This weekend Chivalry follow-up Mirage: Arcane Warfare is free-to-try on Steam—a bit of a bad omen, considering the game released two weeks ago. Also not a surprising omen given the game launched with zero buzz whatsoever.

If you’ve got money to throw around, there’s also the GOG Summer Sale—first of the season, even though “summer” doesn’t properly start for another week. Some pretty great deals going on, and any purchase nets you a copy of Rebel Galaxy for free.

 

Ukrainians cheer on first day of visa-free EU travel

Ukrainians on Sunday (11 June) celebrated the first day of visa-free access to the European Union, with thousands crossing the border as President Petro Poroshenko proclaimed a dramatic “exit” from Moscow’s grip.

The move is symbolic for Kyiv, where a pro-EU revolt in 2014 toppled the previous Russia-backed government and was followed by Moscow’s annexation of the Crimea peninsula sparking a protracted ongoing conflict with pro-Russian separatists in eastern Ukraine.

“The visa-free regime for Ukraine has started! Glory to Europe! Glory to Ukraine!” Poroshenko tweeted early Sunday as many travellers started crossing the border and posting selfies.

Only those with biometric passports – containing a microchip with personal data, including fingerprints – can take advantage of the visa-free travel for the time being, for stays of up to 90 days every six months that don’t include work.

The exemption does not apply to Ireland or Britain, nor to Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland, which are part of the EU’s Schengen passport-free area despite not being members of the bloc.

Later on Sunday, Poroshenko met with Slovak counterpart Andrej Kiska on the Slovak-Ukrainian border, unlocking a mock “door to the EU” painted like a Ukrainian passport.

“We have waited so long for this,” he said. “I am sure that this day, 11 June, will go down in the history of Ukraine as a final exit of our country from the Russian empire and its return to the family of European nations.”

“Welcome to Europe,” Kiska told the crowd. “I want to call on you to continue carrying out reforms.”

“Today we bring down the barrier between the people of Ukraine and the people of the European Union,” EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini said in a video address.

“Ukraine has delivered reforms its citizens were asking for and we of the EU have kept our promise. This is what we call a win-win solution.”

“It feels so good”

The EU approved the visa-free travel last month after long delays and Kyiv’s embattled reforms, fulfilling a key promise to cement ties with Kyiv following the broad trade and political association agreement sealed in 2014.

Kyiv is now seeking to boost European integration with cheaper rail links and more low-cost air connections with EU cities, Poroshenko said on Saturday.

Foreign Minister Pavlo Klimkin cheered on Twitter after passengers on flights from Ukraine were able to enter Warsaw, Budapest, Frankfurt and other airports.

“#Bezviz (no visa) is just the beginning!” he wrote, himself crossing the border to Hungary and posting photos from the passport control area.

View image on Twitter

View image on Twitter

By midday, thousands had crossed the border into EU countries, the foreign ministry’s consular department wrote on Twitter. Only four people were denied entry.

“I’m going abroad for the first time in a decade, and it feels so good,” said Ukrainian Ulyana Golosyak who crossed the border to Poland from western Ukraine despite her husband accompanying her in case of complications.

View image on Twitter

“He thought something could happen that I would be turned back and would need to be picked up,” she told AFP. “I’m happy I can cross the border with this passport.”

View image on Twitter

View image on Twitter

CNN rolls out a new travel vertical

Verticals are hot in media. CNN is taking the wraps off CNN Travel, a new vertical site that will provide people with travel recommendations for families. It launches with a staff or 10, with aspirations to triple that by the end of the year.

The site will focus on travel recommendations. At launch, CNN Travel offers illustrated city guides of world capitals ranging from Dubai to New York, which include suggestions on where to eat in certain locations and so on. Instead of the news junkies it draws to its parent site, CNN Travel is meant to lure people planning getaways. In the coming months, it will launch podcasts, a live events business and will press further into video. In addition to the core edit team, CNN Travel may tap into a network of 800 contributors around the world.

“There will be quite a lot of destination-based content around experience and where to stay, practical advice,” said Ed O’Keefe, CNN’s svp of premium digital content.

Unlike many other publishers, which stash new verticals inside their motherships, CNN has its own URL, CNNTravel.com, and is expected to ultimately exist as a standalone site, with an audience built through SEO.

“We’re not creating a subvertical of CNN hoping we might scrape up some more display business,” O’Keefe added. “We’re thinking of these investments as independent businesses.”Image result for CNN rolls out a new travel vertical

The hope for this independent business, which O’Keefe likened to a well-capitalized startup, is that it taps into the so-called “endemic” advertising in particular categories. With CNN Travel, the aim is to appeal to the wide swath of airlines, hotels, cruises and resorts looking for a more specialized audience than a broad general news site. That effort has begun auspiciously: Its global launch sponsor is Hilton.

“They’re not going to be next to Comey news,” O’Keefe said of CNN Travel’s advertisers. “That’s something within the CNN repertoire that’s helpful for traditional advertisements we might want to take.”

CNN Travel is also the latest in a batch of recent vertical launches CNN has made. CNN Tech, overseen by former Bloomberg vet Sam Grobart, bowed just a couple weeks ago, and CNN Politics, grew substantially during the recent election season and has motored along since.

But where politics is something primed for social, CNN Travel as a site (and as a category) is geared toward performing well in search. To get there, CNN Travel needs to have content on all the locations that readers — and advertisers — might find interesting. It doesn’t have that all mapped out yet, but the site’s edit staff has spent the past nine months getting those things ready under the direction of its editor-in-chief, Brekke Fletcher, whom O’Keefe plucked from WSJ. Magazine.

As it continues to build its list, the site will also be able to rely, to an extent, on programming from CNN’s linear programming. At launch, CNN Travel will feature a weekly video adapted from “The Wonder List with Bill Weir,” a TV show in its second season. Provided the videos are a hit with Travel’s audience, the goal is to ramp that up to a daily video installment.

What CNN Travel will not feature, for the time being, is content from “Parts Unknown,” the popular show hosted by former chef Anthony Bourdain. While there is a slight overlap between the “Parts Unknown” audience and the audience O’Keefe hopes CNN Travel will attract, it is slight. “We look at Travel as the soft Instagram filter to the hard look that is ‘Parts Unknown,’” he said.

How to take amazing summer travel photos – by the experts

 

Rajveer splits her time between France and Italy, and her native Australia. She loves busy beach images, preferring the reality of “crowds and beach towels to get a playful shot”. Dutch photographer Claire, who has more than 300,000 Instagram followers, prefers still landscapes, including empty beaches. Both share tips on how to make the most of sun, sand, and sea.

Rajveer: My beach photographs aim to evoke the thrill of summer beside the seaside. To capture action keep looking around; ensure your camera is ready to shoot – and remember to ask permission before publishing photos that feature other people when possible.

Beach and town. Positano, Italy. Photograph: Rajveer Johal

 RJ: I love Positano! Frame your shot to capture vibrant colours. Whether it’s beach towels, umbrellas or the buildings/landscape, take advantage of the colours on offer. Take the photograph along the beach or back in towards the shore.

RJ: When searching for a backdrop look for something that gives a sense of where you are – and ensure the colours compliment your outfit!

Claire Droppert: Renaissance Beach, Aruba, is an Instagrammers’ favourite for its white sands and pink flamingos. On a bright, sunny day it can be difficult to get a good shot: try using polarised sunglasses by holding them in front of your lens, and turning them a bit. I had to wait patiently for this shot, allowing for the wave to roll in – it wasn’t a bad place to wait.

  • CD: Look for interesting features – it could be a boat on the water, a lighthouse, or a pier. Often, capturing a subject from a higher viewpoint maximises the opportunities presented by the wide open spaces of the beach and sky. I climbed a sand dune to get this shot at Rubjerg Knude, Denmark.

In the city

by Sezgi Olgac

Sezgi is a Turkish photographer based in Istanbul. She joined Instagram when it launched in 2010, has taken photos every day since and now has 158,000 followers. Three years ago Sezgi became a professional photographer, specialising in creating social media content. She says: “Cities are like my playground – and they are best in summer when days are longer, the sky is blue and the trees are in bloom.”

Sezgi Olgac: Be ready! A beautiful moment may be fleeting; always have your camera with you and double check your settings. Be patient. The more you shoot, the more likely you’ll get the best result. I took more than 20 shots of boys jumping off Galata Bridge, in the Karaköy area of Istanbul, and this was the best.

SO: Noon is a time most photographers avoid … but you can take advantage of it. Observe the light and focus on the shadows around you. Cities are not just concrete walls and grey skylines. Keep your eyes open for colourful walls, houses or shop fronts that might create excellent backdrops. Mexico City, where I took the shot above, is filled with bright pinks, yellows and blues.

  • SO: Adding foreground detail – such as flowers or trees – can help create a unique image. Get closer to the flowers or trees to frame your photo as I did in this shot on Kastellorizo in Greece, less than a mile from the Turkish coast.

On the road

by Jillian Mann and Kyla Trethewey

In 2013, best friends Jill and Kyla sold everything and set off on a road trip. They are still going, living out of their restored vintage trailer in the US, and beyond. Currently, they are melting in the Texas heat. Their ourwildabandon.com blog and Instagram account, which has 133,000 followers, document their life “on the run”.

Jillian Mann: When you’re travelling, and already in motion, make sure to capture those moments. Think in terms of exciting and dynamic shots. Check, and also experiment with, shutter speeds: a faster speed will freeze the motion, slow the shutter to achieve motion blur. We took the above shot of our friend near Yosemite, California.

Kyla Trethewey: Interact with your environment. We love to place a subject within a scene, allowing us to share an immersive experience as well as illustrate the scale of where we have found ourselves. In this case, it was Monument Valley, Utah. A centred composition is an effective way to frame your subject but play around with it, see what has the most impact.

  • JM: It’s essential in travel photography to show where you are – and what you’re doing there. Pick a strong focal point or use natural lines to draw the eye to where you want it to go, like hills into a valley – seen above at Independence Pass in Colorado. Consider the foreground as well as the background, they can be equally important in landscape photography. Time of day is also relevant: locations look different depending on the hour, and the position of the sun.

At sunset

by Darin Tang

Darin is a Los Angeles-based photographer who enjoys shooting at the beach. His popular Instagram feed has 71,300 followers and perfectly captures balmy Californian evenings by the sea.

Basketball scene, California.Photograph: Darin Tang

  • Darin Tang: My favourite time of day to shoot shadows is right before the sun sets. Here, the players’ long shadows made a perfect path that leads the eye to the action and also meets the setting sun. If you include people in your photos, and are close up to them, ensure you ask for their permission.

Venice Beach, California.
Photograph: Darin Tang

 DT: Sunset doesn’t have to mean silhouettes against an orange backdrop. In this shot, the colours of the famous graffiti palm trees in Venice Beach compliment the colours created by the setting sun. Hang around for a while: you don’t want to watch the sky light up with colours while you’re driving from the beach.

Photograph: Darin Tang

 DT: This classic surfer shot was taken at Venice Beach. Lighting is the most important thing to consider when taking a reflection photo. Here, I positioned my camera down low, almost touching the water. This allowed me to capture the full reflection of the surfers.

 

All boards to move towards common curriculum, papers

NEW DELHI: The Union ministry of human resource development (HRD) will curb the “malpractice of spiking of marks” and implement a more scientific moderation policy from 2018. The Delhi high court had restrained the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) -primarily because of the timing of the board’s decision -from doing away with its moderation policy this year.

The HRD ministry has set up an inter-board working group (IBWG), comprising eight boards, to work out the details for stopping of moderation and upward revision, or spiking, of marks.

IBWG will deliberate regularly and work out a model for all boards to follow.

All boards will also move towards adopting a common core curriculum, the grace marks policy is to be uploaded on websites, and marks and grades for extracurricular subjects are to be given separately. The plan is also to share question papers (with CBSE) to bring about uniformity in assessment.

“It (the plan to scrap moderation) could not happen as planned this year. However, we are working things out for all boards from next year. In fact, all the boards have agreed to stop spiking marks from next year,” a senior HRD ministry official said.

The official added that some boards had raised certain issues at the April 24, 2017 meeting about implementing the same this year, but they are in agreement about 2018.

In April, 32 school education boards agreed not to moderate marks (for upward revision) this year, but the Delhi high court, acting on a petition, restrained CBSE from implementing it. Meanwhile, some boards continued with the practice of “inflating the marks”.

However, the HRD ministry was encouraged by the fact that some boards, like those of Punjab and Karnataka, adhered to the consensus and made an effort.

 

Google Trusted Contacts Review

 

HIGHLIGHTS

  • Trusted Contacts lets you share location
  • It lets people you trust track your location
  • It’s useful when, say, you are returning home late

Safety isn’t something anyone should take for granted, no matter where they live. Whether you’re returning home after a late night with friends, or simply returning late from work during rush hour, there’s a good chance you might have received calls from loved ones asking where you are. Annoying as these calls or texts might be, they only show that someone cares about you.

There’s no shortage of ways to let people know where you are. You can share your location via practically any messaging app, or just let your loved ones know where you are via calls or texts. If you are in a crowded bus or train and can’t use your phone, you can simply use an app such as Google’s Trusted Contacts to do this for you.

Trusted Contacts lets you create a list of, well, trusted contacts, who can access your location anytime, anywhere. Instead of calling or texting you, they simply click a button and find out where you are. This is a very useful feature from a safety standpoint. You’ll be asked if you want to share your location, so you know who is looking for you, but if you don’t respond, the details will be shared to the trusted contact anyway, as a safety feature.

We installed the app on an Android phone (the iOS version is still in the works) and added a couple of trusted contacts. But before you can add any contacts, the app reminds you that you need to enable location history and location sharing. Now most people already have this turned on if they use any kind of location-based apps on Android, but if you are worried about sharing your location with Google, with might be a problem.Google Trusted Contacts Review

Once you decide to give Google to access your location at all times, you can add trusted contacts. Trusted contacts can see your location via the app, but they don’t need to install it just to see your whereabouts. You can instead invite them to check your location via email. They can simply click a link and access your location via the Web.

Make sure that you don’t share this address with anyone else as it’s a publicly visible URL, which is a privacy concern. You can stop sharing your location at any point, after which no one will be able to see it. But at the time you are sharing it, the URL should still ideally be viewable only by people you’ve invited.

Sharing your location is easy enough. You just need to tap a button, and it starts happening until you stop sharing it the same way. That’s different from apps such as Find My Friends, available on Apple’s iOS, which share your location whenever your trusted friend seeks this information. When sharing is on, the app also lets people see where you are while you’re commuting, which is a nice addition. They can also request your location via the app or Web, and you get a notification for it. If you don’t respond within five minutes, your location gets shared automatically.

We tested this app in Delhi and it worked as expected. You could just as easily share your location via WhatsApp if you don’t mind having to manually send your location – and of course, you would lose out on live tracking too. Overall, we can recommend this app but be aware that sharing your location will decrease your smartphone’s battery life. If the privacy concerns don’t bother you and you are on Android, Trusted Contacts is a good app you to share your location with your loved ones.

 

Paytm Payments Bank Integrates UPI to Simplify Transactions

 

HIGHLIGHTS
Paytm Payments Bank will integrate with UPI, the company said
The payments bank account is separate from the Paytm Wallet
Wallet users can only use UPI to reload cash in the wallet
Paytm has announced that the Paytm Payments Bank will adopt the Unified Payments Interface (UPI) to simplify transactions. The Paytm Payments Bank account holders will be able to send and receive money using an @paytmbank virtual payment address. Merchants that support UPI will also be able to accept payments from Paytm Payments Bank customers via this mechanism.

The company has not stated when this will be enabled, but it’s a somewhat moot point, as the bank is still only available via invitation – most people will not have an account as of now. Unlike the wallet, the Paytm Payments Bank can offer interest – and is in fact offering 4 percent interest on deposits – and can also issue debit cards, which can also be used for cash withdrawal from ATMs.Paytm Payments Bank Integrates UPI to Simplify Transactions

Wallet customers are not being automatically onboarded as bank customers. Paytm’s wallet does allow you to reload money using the UPI. When you go to the add money page, along with common options such as debit and credit cards, and netbanking, there is also a UPI option where you can enter your existing VPA, to send a cash request.

The Paytm Payments Bank on the other hand will allow you to create a new VPA, linked to that account or any other bank account that supports UPI, and allow you to send and receive money using your VPA.
Airtel launched the first payments bank in India earlier this year, which offers 7.25 percent interest but does not have a debit card, so you can only cash out at certain Airtel retail stores. The company also stated that it plans to integrate with UPI, but has not so far.

“We will soon enable seamless creation of UPI IDs on our platform so that users can send and receive money to each other, and for merchant payments,” says Renu Satti, CEO, Paytm Payments Bank. “It will be one of the most important components of our payments platform and enable us to bring cost-efficient digital payment services to every Indian. Our significant consumer base makes us well-positioned to become a large issuer of UPI handles, driving its adoption in the country.”

Disclosure: Paytm’s parent company One97 is an investor in Gadgets 360.