Sony PlayStation VR Goes on Sale, Brings Virtual Reality to the Masses

Sony PlayStation VR Goes on Sale, Brings Virtual Reality to the Masses

Sony PlayStation VR Goes on Sale, Brings Virtual Reality to the Masses
HIGHLIGHTS
Sony is betting that it has a better package for mainstream consumers
Sony has to sell a lot of devices to attract talented game developers
Early reviews have praised its design, affordability and comfort
When the PlayStation VR goes on sale Thursday, it won’t just be a test for Sony. As the first high-end virtual-reality headset aimed at the mass market, the gadget will also offer the first hint as to whether the technology can become a mainstream product.

For about $500 (roughly Rs. 33,500), consumers won’t be getting newer features or better performance than pricier headsets being sold by Facebook and HTC. Sony is betting that it has a better package for mainstream consumers, given the ease of use and ability to tap into a gaming and entertainment ecosystem built by the PlayStation franchise over the past two decades. The device is Sony’s best prospect to remain on the cutting edge of technology after scaling back in phones, televisions and other businesses.

(Also see: Sony PlayStation VR Hits Stores Shelves Thursday to Take on Oculus and HTC)

“The Sony release is the first real test of consumer VR,” said Dave Ranyard, a virtual-reality developer and former head of Sony’s London studio, which produced its main launch title PlayStation VR Worlds. “Nobody knows the rate of uptake, so this is the first significant indication.”

The debut also represents a classic gaming-industry dilemma. Sony has to sell a lot of devices to attract talented game developers, gamers won’t buy new hardware unless there’s quality content. Sony hasn’t lined up enough must-have titles to kick off that virtuous cycle, according to Hideki Yasuda, an analyst at Ace Research Institute in Tokyo.

“If an amazing game comes out and makes everyone want to buy PSVR, the situation will be different, but for now we’re not seeing that,” Yasuda said.

With more than 40 million people already owning a PlayStation 4 console, the novelty of VR alone may be enough to attract a large number of early adopters. IHS Markit and Goldman Sachs Group Inc. predict more than 1.4 million unit sales by the end of this year, while Ranyard is more conservative, expecting about 1 million in the first 12 months.

(Also see: PlayStation VR Is the First Real Mass-Market Virtual Reality Headset)

“This is the biggest innovation since the arrival of TV,” Atsushi Morita, president of Sony Interactive Entertainment Japan Asia, said at a launch event in Tokyo.
Sony shares were up 1.4 percent at JPY 3,431 in early trading. The stock is up more than 14 percent this year, compared with a 13 percent decline in the Topix Index.

Another key metric to watch will be how many games each player buys for the PSVR, Raynard said. The device will generate $134 million in revenue for VR content makers this year, about twice the $69 million it expects from Facebook’s Oculus and HTC’s Vive headsets, IHS estimated. Still, that would represent just a fraction of the total market for games software sales.

Early reviews of the system have generally praised its design, affordability and comfort, but a common criticism has been the lack of compelling content. There are about 30 titles available at launch, which are little more than environments to explore, or short games. Sony acknowledges as much, saying what’s available for now are mostly brief experiences that showcase VR technology instead of those with hours of gameplay.

(Also see: PlayStation VR First Impressions)

“The experiences we’re putting on offer are different from your 50-hour Metal Gear Solid experience,” said Shawn Layden, president of Sony Interactive Entertainment America, the unit overseeing the U.S. PlayStation game business. “You have a very intense 7 to 10 to 15 minutes of gameplay.”

Case in point: Job Simulator, a tongue-in-cheek launch title, lets people pretend that they’re working in a kitchen, office or convenience store. Jun Tamaoki raised eyebrows at last month’s Tokyo Game Show with Bandai Namco Holdings Inc.’s virtual-reality game Summer Lesson, which lets users become home tutors.

“It will take a longer time to find those eureka moments – oh wow, this is so fun,” Tamaoki said in an interview. “I would expect a gradual start for now.”

© 2016 Bloomberg L.P.

Tags: Sony, PlayStation VR, PS VR, PSVR, Virtual Reality, VR, PlayStation 4, Wearables, Gamaing

[“Source-Gadgets”]

India’s 23rd Regional Language Wikipedia Goes Live in Tulu

India's 23rd Regional Language Wikipedia Goes Live in Tulu

HIGHLIGHTS

  • Wikiconference India 2016 was held at Chandigarh last week
  • Wikipedia in Tulu can be browsed at www.tcy.wikipedia.org
  • There are currently 1,100 articles live in Tulu

The Tulu Wikipedia has just gone live, giving another boost to yet another ancient Indian language otherwise struggling to keep up with the times and speedily changing technology.

The news was announced by two key community organisers on Saturday who helped to make an eight-year-dream come true. Dr Vishwanatha Badikana, a PhD in Kannada literature in Mangalore (Karnataka) and Bharathesha, a mechanical engineer based in Muscat, announced this while attending Wikiconference India 2016, India’s second national Wikipedia meet in half a decade being held in Chandigarh this weekend.

Tulu is a language spoken by around two million native speakers mainly in southwest Karnataka and in Kasaragod district, Kerala. It belongs to the Dravidian family of languages. Some scholars suggest Tulu is among the earliest Dravidian languages with its roots going back some 2000 years.

Wikipedia itself is available in 22 Indian languages, with Tulu becoming the 23rd. There are another one-and-half dozen Indian language Wikipedias in the incubator stage at present. Not all languages have an active wiki community.

Located at tcy.wikipedia.org, the Tulu Wikipedia has been in “incubation” since 2008. This term is used to describe such online collaborately-crafted encyclopedias which are still waiting to to go “live” or active and come online.

Around 2014, it was reactivated. Following some meetings and workshops, the concept was also showcased that year at a “World Tulu Conference” stall in December of that year.

After much work, some 1,100 articles (or 1,050 if one could ignore those which are not redirects) went live. There are currently about 100 editors who have made over 10 edits each.

“Dr Vishwanatha and Bharathesha are the number one and number two contributors,” said Dr UB Panavaja, a former scientist and techie and long-term supporter of Kannada computing. Pavanaja currently looks after the CMR (Creating Movement Resources) of the Bengaluru-based Centre for Internet and Society which works with some language groups to promote their Wikipedia presence.

“After we became live, we will import articles from the ‘incubator’ site, build the ‘village pump’, set up policies, administration structure, info boxes and templates,” said Pavanaja, describing the tools that any new Wikipedia needs to set up.

Scholars like the nineteenth missionary-linguist Bishop Robert Caldwell have called this language “peculiar and very interesting”. According to him, “Tulu is one of the most highly developed languages of the Dravidian family. It looks as if it had been cultivated for its own sake.”

The language has a lot of written literature and a rich oral literature such as the Epic of Siri, according to the Wikipedia itself.

In coastal Karnataka, both the Mangalore and Udupi areas today allow the language as an optional third-language in local schools.

This role in schooling makes it all the more mandatory to create encyclopaedic texts in the language, say its Wikipedia promoters. Mangalore University also has a Tulu language chair while St Aloysius’s Radio Sarang community radio station broadcasts daily in this tiny language and the local All India Radio also broadcasts in the language.

Some five Kannada language representatives and one from Tulu are presently in Mohali-Chandigarh attending Wikiconference India 2016.

Indian Wikipedias include Assamese, Bengali, Bhojpuri, Bishnupriya Manipuri, Gujarati, Hindi, Kannada, Kashmiri, Konkani, Maithili, Malayalam, Marathi, Nepali, Newari, Odia, Pali, Punjabi, Sanskrit, Sindhi, Tamil, Telugu and Urdu, besides, now, Tulu.

Tags: India, Internet, Wikipedia

[“source-ndtv”]

Paan (Betel Leaves): The After-Dinner Sweetener Goes Fashionable

Paan (Betel Leaves): The After-Dinner Sweetener Goes Fashionable

Image Credits: Instagram/fervilares

I learnt how to make paan from my eldest aunt. Every Sunday, she would open her big silver box, take out the freshly washed paan leaf, break the stem and hand it over to me. As I chewed on the stem, I would watch her lovingly smear a hint of slaked lime paste, sprinkle betel nut that she’d chop herself (she had a special nut cutter for it), add some black cardamom and fold it in gently before popping it in her mouth. She would make one for my grandmother too. That was their Sunday after-meal regime. Sometimes, if my grandmother felt generous, she would pick the smallest leaf from the box and give it to me. It was the best digestive on the planet, they would say.

I grew up in a family of paan-poppers, but no one else was allowed to touch my aunt’spaan ka dabba. The others had to source their customised paans from the local paanwala– some meetha (sweet) and some saada (plain). Plus, there were other requests too – less lime, more nuts, a little sweet, etc. The kids were of course, never given any.  Oddly, we never quite picked up on the habit either, which is why I ate my first meetha paan when I was probably in college. I had discovered the gulkand (the rose petal preserve) by then – a sickly sweet mix that I had read was good for health.

Who would have thought that the paan would eventually become inspiration for nouveaufood that had nothing to do with the original betel leaf!

My first experiment with a non-paan paan was at an Indian restaurant called The Pink Poppadum in Bengaluru about five years ago. They served something called a paan shotat the end of our dinner. It was possibly a blend of sweet paan leaves, cardamom seeds, ice cream or cold milk, and gulkand. I hated it. The idea of having to drink something that deserved the customary chewing, felt like I was betraying an age-old practice. But in little time, paan shots began to appear on the menu of upscale Indian restaurants across the country. Celebrity chefs by then had created their own recipes of paan shots too.

Today a paan shot will probably be considered too basic, given the various kinds of experiments that are going on with the betel leaf and its essence.

There’s of course the paan kulfi, which I have been told has been available in Mumbai for generations. I remember standing near Chowpatty at a local kulfi shop, waiting in queue to try one. By then, my fascination for paan had waned. But it was more about trying something new that I had heard so much about. The slightly granular texture of the kulfidid capture the essence of the paan well, definitely way better than the paan flavoured ice cream I came to eat much later in Bengaluru again. In fact, Pabrai’s at HSR Layout in the city serves a paan ice cream which reportedly has 17 different ingredients includingmulethi (an ingredient that’s good for a sore throat). Rumour has it that one can even find a paan gelato (did I just hear the Italians groan?), though I am yet to find one.

Image Credits: www.foodiye.com/Nishant

Chai Point in Bengaluru, which is the saviour of most chai addicts at work, offers something called a paan kulfi shake. It’s a simple recipe of blended kulfi flavoured withpaan syrup.

Talking about drinking paan, the Novotel Bengaluru had come up with a cocktail called the Swadesh Videsh Paan. It was a giddy mix of white rum, Bailey’s, betel leaf, gulkand, andmeetha paan masala. I am pretty certain that for those who like their cocktails sweet, it would have been a massive hit.

Given that the paan is considered to be one of the best after-meal treats, it was only a matter of time that it got into the dessert books. La Folie Patisserie in Colaba Mumbai makes a decent paan gulkand macaron. I am not sure if it will remind of walking the streets of Varanasi, but it tastes good, provided you can handle the sugar rush.

And then there’s the paan mousse at SpiceKlub in Lower Parel – a ‘fusion’ restaurant. Making the most of molecular gastronomy (and in this country, it often means using liquid nitrogen to its maximum) this dish comes with a paan leaf wrapped around mousse, and then frozen with liquid nitrogen. So, there’s a lot of smoke when it comes to your table, but very little fire.

Glocal Restopub that’s recently opened in Indiranagar, Bengaluru, has a paan cheesecakeon the menu. It’s basically baked cheesecake stuffed inside a paan. It also has gulkand in it. Trying that one is going to take a lot of courage!

I hear the Shangri-La at Bengaluru has something called the paan kebab, which is not on the menu, but can be ordered if you are, say, planning to get married at the hotel. It has definitely piqued my interest. But what’s way more curious is the paan biryani served at Sattvam, the sattvic restaurant at Sadashivnagar. The biryani rice is subtly flavoured with betel leaves and some rosewater. In fact, Baluchi at The Lalit, Connaught Place, New Delhi, also has a paan biryani (vegetarian of course) on the menu where basmati rice is flavoured with a hint of paan masala and kewra water, and garnished with betel leaf. The paanflavour is definitely not overpowering, but won’t let you miss its presence for sure. Now that can’t be too bad, can it?

[“source-ndtv”]

Tinkle Magazine Goes Fortnightly, Introduces New Character ‘Wai Knot’

Tinkle Magazine Goes Fortnightly, Introduces New Character 'Wai Knot'

HIGHLIGHTS

  • Tinkle Monthly has been a fixture since its launch in 1980
  • It has launched its first fortnightly issue this July
  • It also introduced a new character, a kid from Bengaluru called Wai Knot

Tinkle Magazine has been a fixture in India since its launch in 1980. Along with Amar Chitra Katha, Tinkle has long been one of the most famous and iconic Indian comic magazines, and characters like Suppandi and Shikari Shambu are instantly recognisable to many Indians. One thing that’s been a constant for the magazine is its monthly frequency, but the July issue of Tinkle brought a couple of surprises.

For one, Tinkle has announced its first fortnightly issue – the July 2016 issue. This should have come out at the start of the month, but apparently it got delayed due to some postal issues, and is arriving late. The second issue will arrive mid-July, a first for the magazine.

View image on Twitter

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Tinkle Magazine @TinkleMagazine

Here’s a message from our Editor for all our lovely readers.#TinkleTurnsFortnightly :)

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As seen on the cover and Tinkle’s website, the new issue also introduces a new character, Wai Knot, a kid from Bengaluru who’s motto in life is, “don’t ask why, ask why not?”

Both Amar Chitra Katha and Tinkle were founded by Anant Pai – who signed off as Uncle Pai – with ACK Media acquiring the magazine in 2007. The publisher has been active at Comic Con India and actively participated in comic culture in India, while also embracing technology to stay relevant in the modern era.

The company launched the ACK Comics app in 2014, with which you can read its various comics online, and Tinkle partnered with Blippar to release augmented reality comics as well.

The company now uses WhatsApp to hold contests for fans, and is focusing on digital media as a way of staying relevant without losing the iconic art and storytelling that makes it so recognisable, and it seems to be paying off with a shift from monthly to fortnightly issues, a sign of the increased popularity of the magazine.

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Tags: ACK Media, Amar Chitra Katha, Suppandi, Tinkle
[“Source-Gadgets”]

HomeFood & DrinksPaan (Betel Leaves): The After-Dinner Sweetener Goes FashionablePaan (Betel Leaves): The After-Dinner Sweetener Goes Fashionable

Paan (Betel Leaves): The After-Dinner Sweetener Goes Fashionable

Image Credits: Instagram/fervilares

I learnt how to make paan from my eldest aunt. Every Sunday, she would open her big silver box, take out the freshly washed paan leaf, break the stem and hand it over to me. As I chewed on the stem, I would watch her lovingly smear a hint of slaked lime paste, sprinkle betel nut that she’d chop herself (she had a special nut cutter for it), add some black cardamom and fold it in gently before popping it in her mouth. She would make one for my grandmother too. That was their Sunday after-meal regime. Sometimes, if my grandmother felt generous, she would pick the smallest leaf from the box and give it to me. It was the best digestive on the planet, they would say.

I grew up in a family of paan-poppers, but no one else was allowed to touch my aunt’spaan ka dabba. The others had to source their customised paans from the local paanwala– some meetha (sweet) and some saada (plain). Plus, there were other requests too – less lime, more nuts, a little sweet, etc. The kids were of course, never given any.  Oddly, we never quite picked up on the habit either, which is why I ate my first meetha paan when I was probably in college. I had discovered the gulkand (the rose petal preserve) by then – a sickly sweet mix that I had read was good for health.

Who would have thought that the paan would eventually become inspiration for nouveaufood that had nothing to do with the original betel leaf!

My first experiment with a non-paan paan was at an Indian restaurant called The Pink Poppadum in Bengaluru about five years ago. They served something called a paan shotat the end of our dinner. It was possibly a blend of sweet paan leaves, cardamom seeds, ice cream or cold milk, and gulkand. I hated it. The idea of having to drink something that deserved the customary chewing, felt like I was betraying an age-old practice. But in little time, paan shots began to appear on the menu of upscale Indian restaurants across the country. Celebrity chefs by then had created their own recipes of paan shots too.

Today a paan shot will probably be considered too basic, given the various kinds of experiments that are going on with the betel leaf and its essence.

There’s of course the paan kulfi, which I have been told has been available in Mumbai for generations. I remember standing near Chowpatty at a local kulfi shop, waiting in queue to try one. By then, my fascination for paan had waned. But it was more about trying something new that I had heard so much about. The slightly granular texture of the kulfidid capture the essence of the paan well, definitely way better than the paan flavoured ice cream I came to eat much later in Bengaluru again. In fact, Pabrai’s at HSR Layout in the city serves a paan ice cream which reportedly has 17 different ingredients includingmulethi (an ingredient that’s good for a sore throat). Rumour has it that one can even find a paan gelato (did I just hear the Italians groan?), though I am yet to find one.

Image Credits: www.foodiye.com/Nishant

Chai Point in Bengaluru, which is the saviour of most chai addicts at work, offers something called a paan kulfi shake. It’s a simple recipe of blended kulfi flavoured withpaan syrup.

Talking about drinking paan, the Novotel Bengaluru had come up with a cocktail called the Swadesh Videsh Paan. It was a giddy mix of white rum, Bailey’s, betel leaf, gulkand, andmeetha paan masala. I am pretty certain that for those who like their cocktails sweet, it would have been a massive hit.

Given that the paan is considered to be one of the best after-meal treats, it was only a matter of time that it got into the dessert books. La Folie Patisserie in Colaba Mumbai makes a decent paan gulkand macaron. I am not sure if it will remind of walking the streets of Varanasi, but it tastes good, provided you can handle the sugar rush.

And then there’s the paan mousse at SpiceKlub in Lower Parel – a ‘fusion’ restaurant. Making the most of molecular gastronomy (and in this country, it often means using liquid nitrogen to its maximum) this dish comes with a paan leaf wrapped around mousse, and then frozen with liquid nitrogen. So, there’s a lot of smoke when it comes to your table, but very little fire.

[“source-ndtv”]

Micromax Canvas Selfie 4 With 8-Megapixel Front Camera Goes Official

Micromax Canvas Selfie 4 With 8-Megapixel Front Camera Goes Official

HIGHLIGHTS
The Canvas Selfie runs Android Marshmallow out-of-the-box.
It sports a ‘Tap Sensor’ at the rear for clicking images or taking calls.
It is powered by a 1.3GHz quad-core processor.
Micromax seems to be on a launching spree, as the company has introduced its new Canvas Selfie 4 smartphone in India. The company has announced that the Micromax Canvas Selfie 4 will be going on sale by end of this month available across retail stores. The company this week also unveiled the Micromax Bolt Selfie priced at Rs. 4,999.

The biggest highlight of the Micromax Canvas Selfie 4 is its 8-megapixel front and rear cameras. The smartphone also runs Android 6.0 Marshmallow which could mean it is the first device from Micromax running the Android OS version.

Another notable feature of the Canvas Selfie 4 is its rear ‘Tap Sensor’ which the company touts can click images on tapping. The sensor can also be used to take calls.

For specifications, Micromax Canvas Selfie features a 5-inch HD display; 1.3GHz quad-core processor; 1GB of RAM; 8GB of storage; expandable storage support up to 32GB via microSD card; 3G support, and 2500mAh battery.

Commenting on the launch, Shubhajit Sen, Chief Marketing Officer, said, “Selfies are now the most popular type of photos snapped on a smartphone, with over a million selfies taken per day and 48 percent of that are shared on Facebook alone. With smartphones becoming the first device to capture precious moments with friends and family, a top class camera becomes a must have feature while buying a phone. With the Canvas Selfie 4 and its tap sensor we are upgrading the selfie experience of our young hyper social youngsters who are looking for a perfect integration of innovation, style and performance with an excellent selfie experience.”

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HTC choice 628 dual SIM With thirteen-Megapixel camera goes Ofwi-ficial

HTC Desire 628 Dual SIM With 13-Megapixel Camera Goes Official

employer list exhibits the whole speciwi-fication details of the cellphone.
HTC desire 628 comes with BoomSound stereo speakers.
it is slightly smaller in length than the formerly launched choice 830.
in the wirelessrst week of might also, HTC brought the choice 830 to its portfolio and now the corporationappears set to release another cellphone inside the choice collection. The HTC desire 628 dual SIM has now been listed on the enterprise‘s Vietnam internet site giving all the speciwirelesscation details. For now, availability and pricing details aren’t regarded.

The HTC desire 628 dual SIM has almost comparable wi-fications to the desire 830, with a fewdifferences in size, processor, and digicam. It has a wi-fi-inch HD (720×1280 pixels) display with a pixel density of 294ppi, even as the desire 830 has a barely bigger 5wireless.5wireless-inch show.

The telephone comes with dual SIM twin standby help, and at the same time as the business enterpriselist does not specify the Android model, it is able to be expected to run Android 6.0 Marshmallow with theemployer‘s feel UI on pinnacle. Tje preference 628 dual SIM is powered by means of an unspeciwirelessed 1.3GHz octa-core SoC (concept to be the MediaTek MT6753) it truly is paired with 3GB of RAM. In comparison, the preference 830 is powered by way of a 1.5GHz octa-core MediaTek Helio X10 processor.

it will recreation a thirteen-megapixel rear camera with a f/2.zero aperture, along a wi-fi-megapixel selwi-fie digicam with f/2.4 aperture. The choice 830 comes with the same rear camera, however homes a 4-megapixel UltraPixel digicam on the front with f/2.0 aperture.

The preference 628 dual SIM is indexed to come with 32GB of inner garage, which may be similarlyincreased as much as 2TB with the assist of the microSD slot. The cellphone packs a 2200mAh battery with speedy charging support. moreover, it helps 4G LTE connectivity alongside the simple and Bluetooth options. one of the big highlight is the BoomSound stereo setup, that can also be located at the HTC desire 830 as properly.

The Micro-USB port is positioned at the lowest, even as the 3.5mm audio jack is discovered at thepinnacle. HTC preference 628 twin SIM is nine.8mm thick and weighs 142 grams. there is no word on availability and rate of the desire 628, however the release date shouldn’t betoo a ways.
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Tags: Android, Android Marshmallow, HTC, HTC preference 628, HTC desire 830, Mobiles

Google’s Gmail April Fools’ Day Prank Goes Horribly Wrong

Google's Gmail April Fools' Day Prank Goes Horribly Wrong

Google, following its long tradition of April Fools’ Day jokes, introduced a new prank in Gmail on Friday. Things however didn’t work out the way Google had intended, and the prank finally was pulled amidst uproar.

Google introduced a new feature in Gmail dubbed Mic Drop that allowed users to reply to any email with a new ‘Send + Mic Drop’ button – which replaced the commonly used Send + Archive button. On choosing the drop the mic feature in Gmail, the email included a gif image of a minion character popularised by the movie Despicable Me (and its subsequent releases) as “an explanatory image.”

(Also see: The Best April Fools’ Pranks of 2016)

In a blog post, Google acknowledged the issue and said, “Well, it looks like we pranked ourselves this year.” Google added that the feature was hit by a bug that saw Mic Drop feature inadvertently causing “more headaches than laughs.”

“We’re truly sorry. The feature has been turned off. If you are still seeing it, please reload your Gmail page,” said Google.

Some users reported displeasure with Gmail’s April fool feature as it got them in a tight position. One of the users on Gmail’s Help Forum said, “Thanks to Mic Drop I just lost my job.”

Another user wanted Google’s help in undoing the feature. “This sounds like such a joke, but unfortunately it is not. I sent out an important email to 30 recipients and I inadvertently clicked the “Mic Drop” Send. I completely did not mean to [..] Is there any way I can un-do my mic drop feature?” wrote a Gmail user on the forum thread.

A worst-case scenario was simulated in a few mock-ups by Andy Baio on Twitter (via The Verge) who showed a mail chain being ruined by Gmail’s April fool’s day prank, and a funeral home being inappropriate.

Google has in the past years had some great fun with its April fool’s day pranks but this was the first time that the company got itself criticised for such an attempt.

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Tags: April Fool, April Fools Day, Gmail, Google
[“source-Gadgets”]