Tuesday October 24, 2017
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Super Shoes: Step in your shoes and it will tell you where to Go

smrtGRiPS comes with a similar concept in which bicyclists get to know the directions using a special handlebar grip that connects to a device via Bluetooth

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easyjet supershoes. Image Source: Gizmag.com

What if you’ve never been to a place and missing on the amazing views by just looking at the GPS navigation system on your smartphone? Fret no more, there is a super solution to this.

EasyJet, a European airline company is working on a concept named smart shoes. They named it “Sneakairs” in which the vibrations will be sent to to the wearer’s feet when it’s time to make a turn. This is one of the latest attempts at a tactile navigation tool.

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In a video published the company they have said that “Synchronize your shoes with your phone, choose your destination, put your phone away and enjoy the views”.

The mechanism of this shoe is quite simple. If one needs to make a right turn his right shoe will vibrate. Similarly, if he wants to go left then his left shoe will vibrate. More importantly, if someone has missed the turn, then both the shoes will vibrate twice. That will indicate that you need to go back and rectify your footsteps. Lastly if it vibrates 3 times that will mean that you have reached your destination.

This is built with a miniaturized Arduino clone (an open source hardware). It has a Bluetooth module along with a tiny motor which vibrates every time. Bluetooth helps in connecting this with your device.

This computer hardware fits into a smart shoe prototype called Sneakairs, unveiled recently by European airline easyJet. The shoes help walkers find their way around through directional vibrations. easyJet
This computer hardware fits into a smart shoe prototype called Sneakairs, unveiled recently by European airline easyJet. Image source: easyJet

Coming to the navigation system, it uses Google Maps API to create it’s on pedestrian navigation app. This GPS will run as the background process. So one easily put his/her phone away. No need to constantly look for the directions. However, no official date of release has been decided yet by the company.

This isn’t a new project. Several trials have been done in the past. Anirudh Sharma, a researcher in Banglore, India, designed a vibrating navigation device built into a shoe to help blind people. In 2014, Sharma along with his partner Krispian Lawrence announced that it’ll be available for every person. They named their shoes ‘Lachal‘.

Another researcher at the MIT named Dhairya Dand developed a similar concept called “SuperShoes”. Those were insoles that could be tucked into a regular pair of shoes . Dand said on his website “The shoes are based on a tickling interface, Left toe tickles – turn left, right toe tickles – turn right, no tickle – keep going, both tickle repeatedly – reached the destination, both tickle once – recommendation, both tickle twice – a reminder.”

Similar is the concept with smrtGRiPS in which bicyclists get to know the directions using a special handlebar grip that connects to a device via Bluetooth. The left grip will vibrate to turn left and so does the right grip when a right turn needs to be made.

We are living in a generation where haptic feedback isn’t enough. The Apple Watch has also a feature of haptic direction. With these new innovations one day we’ll get them in our feet, wrists and hands too .

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-by Pritam

Pritam is pursuing engineering and is an intern at NewsGram.Twitter handle: @pritam_gogreen

 

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5 Events Of November Which Are Ideal For Family Vacations

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Events in November which will give you a vacation mood.
Events in November which will give you a vacation mood. Wikimedia.

As we approach the year’s end, Indians not just bid adieu to their summer outfits but also welcome the festival seasons. October and November are two months in India which are full of cultural events and festivals, which make these months, the ideal time for going on family vacations.

Below are the events of November 2017 which you will regret missing. They are worth the try for family vacations:

1.  Dev Deepavali, Varanasi

family vacations
Representational Image. The ghat of holy city Varanasi. 

Varanasi, the holiest city of India, celebrated Dev Deepavali on Kartik Poornima every year. The festival is celebrated with joy. The ghats of Varanasi are lit with beautiful diyas (earthen lamps). God is believed to have descended to the banks of Ganges, to take a holy dip. The festival will take place on November 3, 2017.

 2. Dharamsala International Film Festival

Filmmaker, cinema buffs or all those people interested in the art of films come together of Dharamsala International Film Festival (DIFF). This film festival will witness filmmakers coming from different regions to show films on various issues- socially relevant, contemporary etc. DIFF will take place from November 2 to November 5. If you are a movie buff, then you should immediately pack your bags and seal a date for attending the festival.

3. Pushkar Camel Fair, Rajasthan

Family vacations
Representational Image. Camel Fair is celebrated in Pushkar. Pixabay

Pushkar Camel fair, a cattle fair, in Pushkar which truly defines the real meaning of culture. The Pushkar Camel Fair has been in tradition for a very long time. The fair attracts a huge crowd every year. One of the most ideal and happy places for family vacations. It will take place between 23rd October to 4th November.

Also Read: 7 Beautiful Places To Visit In North East India

4. NH7 Weekender

The five seasons old Indian multi-city music festival has indeed garnered a lot of attention and love from the musically inclined youngsters across the country. It is a combination of national and international studies coming together. In Meghalaya, the event will take place from October 27 to October 28.

5. Guru Purab

family vacations
Sikhs celebrating Guru Purab. Wikimedia.

Guru Purab, one of the most important festivals for Sikhs. The golden temple celebrates it with a lot of joy. The celebration which Amritsar witnesses at this time are unbelievable. It will take place on November 2017. Golden temple is indeed one of the best places for family vacations.

-by Megha Acharya of NewsGram.  She can be reached at @ImMeghaacharya.

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Top 10 Budget Destinations for New Year’s Eve in India

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Budget Destination
Plan your memorable Budget Destination in India for New Year's Eve. Pixabay.
  • New Year is banging your door and we’re sure of you hunting for that perfect place to kick-start your New Year with.
  • Explore the Budget Destinations to celebrate new year 2018 that you have been longing to visit without fretting about your expenses.

Do not just let your wishes confined, Instead, take a sneak peek at this list of top 10 budget destination to celebrate the new year 2018 in India within your budget.

1. Puducherry – The Riviera Of The East

Budget Destination
Carousing at Beach cafes at Puducherry is fun. Pixabay.

From biking on the beaches to carousing on the rooftop cafes, the range of things to do in Pondicherry makes it a land of fantasy. The quaint town, also host to the “Aurobindo Yoga Ashram”, is a good place for self-reflection. And don’t fret over the expensed. The erstwhile French capital is one of the budget destinations to celebrate New Year in India and provides enough fodder for a wonderful New Year party 2018.

2. Gokarna – The Rave Nation

Budget Destinations
Head for Gokarna Beach and Party hard. Pixabay.

If your heart belongs to Goa but at the same time is in dire need of a change in budget, we suggest you opt for the electrifying parties on the unspoiled beaches of Gokarna for a secluded beach holiday. Visit any beach shack, lay down on the hammocks to enjoy the sun with a beer, hit Kudle beach with your gang, or spend afternoons with dolphins in the water. This amazing place is one of the best budget destinations to celebrate new year 2018 in India.

3. Diu – The Fishing Town

Budget Destination
Diu- The Fishing Town. Pixabay.

Get ready for paragliding, surfing, diving, parasailing, and windsurfing in one of the budget destinations to celebrate New Year eve 2018 in India. Lay on the golden sands of the Diu island and dive into the pristine waters of the Nagoa beach. Diu offers you all the adventure you can think of at absolutely affordable prices!

4. Lakshadweep – The Prince Of Coral Reefs

Budget Destination
Feel your feet flowing on the coral reefs at Lakshadweep. Pixabay.

Deep sea diving, exploring coral reefs, kayaking, and yacht sailing are perfect activities for a New Year trip 2018. Aren’t they? And the Lakshadweep group of islands is among the best places to visit in India for New Year celebrations 2018. The dance forms of Kolkali & Parichakali will surely touch the chords of your heart. And that’s not all. Lakshadweep is perfect to enjoy your New Year’s Eve 2018 on a budget.

5. Bhimtal – The Lake Destination From The Mahabharata

Budget Destination
Feel your feet flowing on the coral reefs at Lakshadweep. Pixabay.

The captivating view of the lake and a candlelight dinner on the shore makes a visit to Bhimtal a happening place for the celebrations of the New Year 2018. You can enjoy the awe-inspiring views of the snowcapped hills of Malital or take a tour of the famous museums as you travel to this beautiful destination. And we suggest you stay alert for you may come across hidden stories or secrets that localities have kept to themselves.

You could enjoy snowfall too if you’re lucky enough!

6. Manali – The Abode Of God

Budget Destination
Intoxicate your senses at Manali. Pixabay.

Tibetan Monastery, Van Vihar, Vashisht temple, etc. And a crazy DJ Night with the hills in the backdrop is sure to intoxicate your senses on your trip to Manali. Engage your group in parachuting, paragliding, and skating and pray at the beautiful Gurudwara of Manikaran Sahib to fulfill all your wishes this New Year.

7. Kasol – Getting you high on nature and life

Budget Destination
Under the Starsky lit with your gang at Kasol. Pixabay.

A backpacker’s very own paradise, Kasol will get you high on its scenic appeal. As it majorly hosts a young crowd, there is always some vibrancy in the air. The energy escalates as the new year knocks the door. New year in Kasol can be about hippy parties or a peaceful bonfire session by your camp, under the starlit sky – just as you like it!

8. Mcleodganj – From popular monasteries to secluded scenic hideouts

Budget Destination
Visit the Indian Monasteries on New Year’s Eve. Pixabay.

The Land of Lamas, Mcleodganj is home to Dalai Lama. This spiritual and picturesque hill station in Kangra District of Himachal Pradesh is the sheer delight if you’re planning a new year getaway. Bejewelled with many iconic Tibetan monasteries as Namgyal Monastery, you’ll actually be stunned to know the number of ways you can welcome the coming year! You can go camping amidst snow in Triund, party the night away in some local clubs, or enjoy an exclusive staycation at your Budget Destinations.

9. Udaipur – The Venice of the East at its very best

Budget Destination
Royal Udaipur, The city of Lakes. Pixabay.

Enjoying the royal feeling of Rajputs, your new year in Udaipur is going to be unforgettable. The glistening lake and lazy sun add charm to the landscape, and the weather gets ravishing and more pleasant as the night approaches. Being a popular tourist destination in India, Udaipur, the city of Lakes is dotted with lovely stays for every budget, and almost all these stays offer something special for the new year’s eve. Besides, you can always enter a happening pub in the city to celebrate like never before.

10. Gangtok: For the Cool Minded

Budget Destination
Set your mind cool at Switzerland of the East. Pixabay.

Situated at an altitude of 5410 feet, Gangtok is one of the budget destinations good for hills, Trekking, Natural Beauty and spirituality in Buddhism. Coupled with its beautiful sunset and dawn views and its clean surroundings, this small town is also called the “Switzerland of the East”. Trekkers and mountain lovers, do look out for Kanchenjunga, the 3rd highest peak in the world. Now, imagine spending the eve of New Year in a place with such beauty.

Now that you are aware of these ecstatic places to spend your New Year’s Eve head up for the adventure.

– by Bhavana Rathi of NewsGram.  She can be reached @tweet_bhavana

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Nearly Half of the Teenagers in the US and Japan are ‘Addicted’ to Smartphones, Says New Report

Nowadays, one of the worst things that can happen to us is, like, 'Oh, I left my phone at home,'

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Brian Vega, left, Peyton Ruiz, second from left, and Max Marrero, right, check their smartphones at Bayfront Park in downtown Miami, Florida. (AP Photo/Alan Diaz) (VOA)

California, October 12, 2017 : About half of teenagers in the United States and Japan say they are addicted to their smartphones.

University of Southern California (USC) researchers asked 1,200 Japanese about their use of electronic devices. The researchers are with the Walter Annenberg School for Communications and Journalism. Their findings were compared with an earlier study on digital media use among families in North America.

“Advances in digital media and mobile devices are changing the way we engage not only with the world around us, but also with the people who are the closest to us,” said Willow Bay, head of the Annenberg School.

The USC report finds that 50 percent of American teenagers and 45 percent of Japanese teens feel addicted to their smartphones.

SMARTPHONES
Willow Bay, dean of the USC Annenberg School for Communications and Journalism, Sept. 28, 2016, in Beverly Hills, California. VOA

“This is a really big deal,” said James Steyer, founder of Common Sense Media, an organization that helped with the study. “Just think about it, 10 years ago we didn’t even have smartphones.”

Sixty-one percent of Japanese parents believe their children are addicted to the devices. That compares to 59 percent of the American parents who were asked.

Also, more than 1-in-3 Japanese parents feel they have grown dependent on electronic devices, compared to about 1-in-4 American parents.

Leaving your phone at home is ‘one of the worst things’

“Nowadays, one of the worst things that can happen to us is, like, ‘Oh, I left my phone at home,’” said Alissa Caldwell, a student at the American School in Tokyo. She spoke at the USC Global Conference 2017, which was held in Tokyo.

smartphones
People look at their smartphones in front of an electronic stock board of a securities firm in Tokyo. VOA

A majority of Japanese and American parents said their teenagers used mobile devices too much. But only 17 percent of Japanese teens agreed with that assessment. In the United States, 52 percent of teens said they are spending too much time on mobile devices.

Many respond immediately to messages

About 7-in-10 American teens said they felt a need to react quickly to mobile messages, compared to about half of Japanese teens.

In Japan, 38 percent of parents and 48 percent of teens look at and use their devices at least once an hour. In the United States, 69 percent of parents and 78 percent of teens say they use their devices every hour.

Naturally, that hourly usage stops when people are sleeping, the researchers said.

SMARTPHONES
Young people using smartphones. (Photo courtesy Kuvituskuvat via Flickr) (VOA)

The devices are a greater cause of conflict among teens and parents in the United States than in Japan. One-in-3 U.S. families reported having an argument every day about smarthphone use. Only about 1-in-6 Japanese families say they fight every day over mobile devices.

Care more about devices than your children?

But 20 percent of Japanese teens said they sometimes feel that their parents think their mobile device is more important than they are. The percentage of U.S. teens saying they feel this way is 6 percent.

In the United States, 15 percent of parents say their teens’ use of mobile devices worsens the family’s personal relationships. Eleven percent of teens feel their parents’ use of smarthphones is not good for their relationship.

The USC research was based on an April 2017 study of 600 Japanese parents and 600 Japanese teenagers. Opinions from American parents and teenagers were collected in a study done earlier by Common Sense Media.

Bay, the Annenberg School of Communications dean, said the research raises critical questions about the effect of digital devices on family life.

She said the cultural effects may differ from country to country, but “this is clearly a global issue.” (VOA)