Tuesday, April 28, 2015

TechTalk April 27, 2015

Here it is another instalment of Techtalk with Andrew Thomas of www.digitalnexa.com.

And right off the top of the show what do we learn? That Andrew is doing a massive flipflop when it comes to the screen size of the iPhone6.

We also managed to get a few words in about periscope and the NHL ban.

The review of the day was the Samsung Galaxy S6 edge, and this is a good phone.

The Podcast.

Here is a look at the show notes.

Galaxy S6 Edge review
Beautiful screen - bright, colorful
Edge integration - notification centre, felt like there could be more
Fast, seem less app transition, email and gaming
Looks the part, best designed Samsung phone yet, feels expensive.
Wireless charging
Good notification centre and set up
Feels like it's been sprayed with Pam, very slippy
Almost needs a beveled edge on the back, feels delicate
Interesting 2nd screen for iphone6
Compared it to an s3 and there didn't feel like a vast difference

Great Audi app, original content and podcasting

Free wifi at smart palms in Dubai!
Amazon is on it Destinations!
Amazon knows what you buy, what you watch and even which of your home appliances need repair. Now it wants to know how you spend your weekends away. The company just added Amazon Destinations, a new service designed to help Amazon customers find nearby places for quick jaunts close to home.
Though wrapped up as part of Amazon Local, the company's Groupon and Living Social rival service, Destinations won’t serve up deep discounts from local businesses. Rather, the travel service will focus on corralling hotel options (at their regular prices), along with links to restaurants and other attractions.

Meercat and Periscope banned by NHL!
Facebook CRAZY ad revenue!

Growing digital ad spend

65% of users use Facebook daily!

Apple watch launched with 3000 apps but it's still all about the iPhone

Google building a data management system!
Google is testing a new advertising product seen as the last piece it needs to complete its ad tech superstructure. The search giant is building a data management platform to help target ads and connect brands with people online more effectively, according to sources familiar with the plans.
The platform is called Doubleclick Audience Center, one source with knowledge of the new product said. (Doubleclick is the brand name of Google's suite of ad products for digital publishers and marketers.)
"What they're trying to offer the community is a one-stop shop ad stack all in Google," said one digital marketing executive. Google has a demand-side platform for advertisers to buy digital ads; an ad exchange for publishers to sell ads; an attribution product to measure performance; and a dominant position in search and mobile.
"They just don't have a full service offering yet," the executive said, adding that a data management platform changes that.

NYT listening table is brilliant!

1st selfie stick invented in 19801
Facebook  and Youtube they are looking at the same market!
Facebook Inc said on Wednesday that its users were watching 4 billion videos a day, compared with 3 billion in January and just 1 billion in September.
That was enough for at least nine brokerages to raise their price targets on Facebook's stock on Thursday despite the company's slowest quarterly revenue growth in two years.
Almost all analysts saw video advertising as one of Facebook's most promising areas for revenue growth.
"The Internet is experiencing something of an inflection point in terms of demand for video and mobile advertising, and FB may well be the single biggest beneficiary of this inflection," RBC Capital Markets analyst Mark Mahaney said.
Mahaney raised his price target on Facebook's stock by $17, to $105 from $88.
Facebook shares were down about 1 percent at $83.92 in early trading on Thursday.
Google does not disclose viewership or revenue numbers for YouTube, although the company said in January 2012 that it had reached 4 billion daily views. (reut.rs/1Fgt24e)

Lots of love for the MS Office app


Can’t ignore mobile video! But we don’t watch it all so make them shorter!
Mobile’s share of total online video viewing is set to soar from 26% last year to 40% this year and just over 50% by the end of 2016, surpassing desktop viewing, according to a new report and forecast from Adobe Systems.  Turning to specific device categories, smartphones accounted for 14% of all online video viewing in 2014, while tablets accounted for 12%.
However, it’s worth noting that online video completion rates on smartphones remain relatively low, with just half of viewers watching even a quarter of the video, fewer than a quarter watching 75% of the video, and a little over 10% watching the whole video. In the same vein, average time spent per video view was still much higher on desktops than mobile devices, with the average desktop video view coming to 5 minutes 49 seconds in the fourth quarter of 2014, compared to 44 seconds for tablets and just 22 seconds for smartphones.
The huge difference once again is due largely to problems with the user experience. The Adobe report noted: “Often, links designed to automatically launch and start videos are accidentally clicked, which produces undesirable metrics like high bounce rates and low viewing time per video start. These links often irritate consumers who become more annoyed with the advertising that is embedded in these video launches.”

What are teens using for social media?

While its popularity may have wobbled somewhat over the last two years or so, Facebook is still the most popular social network among teenagers, according to a new survey of 1,060 teens ages 13-17 conducted by Pew. Facebook is the leader in simple prevalence -- meaning how many teens are members and at least occasional users -- and also leads in terms of frequency of usage, although by a much smaller margin.

Overall, 71% of teens said they use Facebook, followed by 52% for Instagram, 41% for Snapchat, 33% for Twitter, 33% for Google+, 24% for Vine, and 14% for Tumblr. Of course there’s plenty of overlap, as 71% of teens said they use more than one social network. However, Facebook again leads the way among teens who use multiple networks, with 41% of teens saying they use Facebook most often, followed by 20% for Instagram, 11% for Snapchat, and 6% for Twitter.
There were some significant gender variations within these figures. Overall, 61% of teen girls were on Instagram, versus just 44% of boys, and 51% of teen girls were on Snapchat, compared to 31% of boys. Meanwhile 45% of boys said they use Facebook most often, compared to 36% of girls. Conversely, 23% of girls said they use Instagram most often, versus 17% of boys.

There were also differences correlated with age: 44% of teens ages 15-17 favored Facebook compared to 35% of younger teens, while 25% of teens ages 13-14 favored Instagram, compared to 17% of older teens.

Social network usage also varied by income. Thus 51% of teens from households with incomes under $30,000 said they used Facebook most often, but that figure fell to 46% for teens from households with incomes from $30,000-$74,999; 35% among teens with household incomes from $75,000-$99,999; and 31% among teens with household incomes over $100,000.

Likewise, just 19% of teens from household incomes under $30,000 said they used Instagram most often, but this proportion rose steadily to 25% of teens in the $100,000+ bracket. The same trend was seen across income groups for Snapchat, which increased from 7% for the lowest income group to 15% for the highest.

Public vs enterprise cloud it is changing!

HP's cloud plans have changed several times over the years. In its most recent incarnation, with its Helion enterprise cloud, HP aimed to compete with the public clouds of Amazon, Google, and Microsoft. Helion is composed of a mix of HP server hardware, the open-source OpenStack cloud, and its recently acquired Eucalyptus cloud.
In September 2014, Bill Hilf, HP's Senior Vice President for HP Cloud, told ZDNet that HP -- having announced cloud partnerships with VMware, Microsoft, CloudStack and OpenStack -- was now focusing on OpenStack. The reason? HP was tired of being seen as an industry follower and the company would now focus on a vastly accelerated cloud strategy.
In April 2015, Hilf told the New York Times. "We thought people would rent or buy computing from us. It turns out that it makes no sense for us to go head-to-head."

IBM, tech and what we could be subjected to in the future!

              The idea is simple. IBM wants the millions who can't make the annual pilgrimage to be as close to the action as they can. Through their mobile devices and the website, fans can quite literally track the golf ball as it makes its way through the course.
                            Grabbing data from sensors connected to the internet (so-called "Internet-of-Things" devices), IBM wants to make raw data a little more insightful for the digital user. No more are there endless scorecards and tables packed with figures crammed on a webpage; the cloud giant wants to provide the core information the viewer wants in a captivating, not alienating way.
                            "It's more engaging for fans, it offers business value, and it helps to expand the audience," said John Kent, IBM's technology manager, at a lunch meeting.
                            Here's how it works. The Augusta National Golf Club, which hosts the Masters every year, has dozens of lasers scattered throughout the course. Those lasers kick out a number of different pieces of data, including the location of the ball (determined on three-axes) and the resting position of the ball, which IBM runs through its cloud and visualizes. The end result is a play-by-play visualization that allows the viewer to interact and see the ball's course, the distance of each drive, and other interesting nuggets of data. And this happens in a matter of seconds.
    Snapchat on the move? Do we like this?

When you open up the updated Snapchat, you’ll be greeted by some unexpected emojis. Instead of publicly displaying your most frequent snap partners with the “Best Friends” list, Snapchat is now lining up emojis with users to show who you’re closest with.
As TechCrunch reported, the Best Friends list had previously been removed in an update in January, and now the new emoji system is in place, complete with a key for what each icon means.
  • Gold Heart: This person is the user you send the most snaps to, and they also send the most snaps to you.
  • Grimace/Grit Teeth: This person sends the most snaps to the same person that you send the most snaps to.
  • Smile: This is one of the people you send the most snaps to.
  • Sunglasses: One of the people that you send snaps to regularly also receives snaps from this person.
  • Smirk: You are one of the people they send snaps to most, but they are not one of the people you send snaps to most.
  • Fire: You and this person have exchanged snaps consecutively for the number of days next to the emoji.
The emojis aim to combat the effect the “Best Friends” list had, which created extra drama and competition among friends, thanks to the public state of the information. Now that the barometer for your friendship has gone private, you can keep better track of your relationships without worrying about others seeing it.

Along with the emojis, Snapchat has also added another feature designed to clue you in to how you interact with people. When users go to send snaps from their “Recents” menu, they’ll be greeted with a label on some of their friends that reads “Needs love.” This will appear on users whom haven’t received snaps from you recently.
These new features follow a trend: They “gamify” Snapchat, turning interaction among friends into a sport. It’s a subtle psychological prodding to encourage users to keep sending snaps, even if it’s for artificial reasons. If you don’t want to get scolded with the “Needs love” tag, you have to stay in touch with everyone. If you want to maintain the fire emoji and keep your streak alive, you have to keep snapping. After all, you don’t want to be the one who causes the icon to disappear.


Star Wars is 8 months away but look at how many times the trailer have been viewed!


We have to go to this con!


Google moving to compete with Amazon? Going more local!

The global giant that is Google could be about to go local in a big way after a report has suggested the company wants to help its users connect more easily with nearby home services, such as plumbers and cleaners. According to a BuzzFeed report, the new product, which is set to be announced by the Web giant in the next couple of months, will be offered via Google Search when users go online to get more information on home-based issues.
The report’s unnamed source suggests the algorithms powering the new product will be geared toward search intent rather than specific requests for a particular local service, which already pull up relevant listings via paid-for ads. In other words, make a cursory inquiry into a problem about home electrics and you’ll more than likely see a bunch of local electricians show up in a box alongside your search results, while an inquiry about making a birthday cake – rather than a specific request for nearby cake makers – should return listings for local bakeries.

CarTalk April 27, 2015

MotoringME.com is in the house and that mean we are talking cars.

The Mustang is what we started the show with.

We moved onto a conversation, eventually about the Xtrail.

Here it is the podcast of the entire show.

Here is a look at some of the messages that came into the show.

Do any cars match Volvo for safety?

997 gt3 or a gt4???

Hi. Any clue about 2016 Nissan Maxima availability? And approximately what price point we can expect it be launched?

Why aren't diesels taking off here? Long distances and lots of off-road are perfect for modern diesels.

Hi guys, do you know any car(s) that would not beep continously after 120km/hr? Thanks, Mohammed

Anything that involves Porsche numbers is nerdy! Move on!

Great show as always guys. 1997 Expedition. Full Al TAYER service history. 150k on clock. Good for how many more miles?? Cheers. Don

I should be there! Fraser

Thanks for the update. BTW, I'm the same guy who asked about Subaru WRX CVT few weeks ago. You suggested to go learn to drive a manual and get STI. I do know how to drive a manual car, have been doing that in India for 10 years.I travel everyday between Sharjah and Dubai during peak hours. No ways I'm buying a manual.

My car don't beep at all Nissan pathfinder 2007 drive cool in desert went to big red pink rock regards usman

Question- why do manufacturers make it possible to have the dash illuminated in the dark, without the exterior lights?? Sick of telling drivers in highways that they have no lights on, then getting level to see inside that their dash is lit and so they have been fooled into thinking they are ok! Surely if the dash did not light up unless the exterior lights are on this would help??? Don again!!

Guys when is the honda hrv being launched. And will it be priced more or less than a civic.

Thanks for the answer on my 1997 ford! I LOVE IT!!!! A freelance silversmith, traveling the country teaching jewellery classes. It stores my mobile workshop in the back and still I have two rows of seats for my kids. And you are right. It still looks great! Don

Which gear give more power auto or manual

Thank you gents as usual for putting an interesting show, would like to know your opinion into the new Nissan X trail full option car? Planing to buy and have enjoyed the test drive.

Just downloaded this and didnt know it would go live

Here is a look at the intended notes!

What are you driving?


Kahn Design Flying Huntsman 105 Defender Pick Up - Yay or Yuck?

Levitating Lexus... Lexii?

Volvo magic!


Check this out!
Canadian camper van specialist Roadtrek has launched the all-new Zion, a compact camper built atop the Ram ProMaster.

Food truck of the future?
Peugeot Design has married the two with an ingenious mobile restaurant "Foodtruck" concept.
Not surprisingly, we love ingenious design at Gizmag and as we reflected eight years ago when we eulogized an equally ground-breaking Nissan NV200 concept, "one of the challenges in writing stories for an emerging technology magazine is to avoid continuously using the word ingenious."
Just as Nissan's NV200 concept (pictured above) was exactly that, transforming an existing...
Just as Nissan's NV200 concept (pictured above) was exactly that, transforming an existing structure into a secondary and equally useful one at will, so too is Peugeot's new Foodtruck truly ingenious.

Legendary Ford Mustang Continues to Conquer Regional Drifting Arena as 2015 Red Bull Car Park Drift Official Car    This year Red Bull athlete and drifting legend Abdo ‘Dado’ Feghali will be showcasing his skills in a customised 5.0L V8, rear wheel drive Mustang throughout the Red Bull Car Park Drift Qualifier rounds around the region.

“We are excited about our partnership with the Red Bull Car Park Drift for the second year
straight, and can’t wait to unleash the 2015 Mustang on the scene as Official Red Bull Car Park

Drift car,” said Paul Anderson, Marketing director of Ford Middle East & North Africa.

“With 50 years of heritage, the 2015 Ford Mustang is more powerful than ever. The way it drives and sounds gives the visceral experience that makes drivers just want to get in and hit the road,” Anderson added.  “And there’s no better platform for Mustang to show its might than here at the Red Bull Car Park Drift, the Middle East’s premier drifting arena.”

The Wraith! (driving it at the end of May)
Rolls-Royce Motor Cars has unveiled the new Wraith ‘Inspired by Film’ edition, which debuted yesterday at the 2015 New York Auto Show, and is now available to order for Rolls-Royce customers in the United Arab Emirates for a limited time.
Wraith is the most powerful Rolls-Royce ever made. Performance complements the drama of exterior styling as a shorter wheelbase, wider rear track and 624 bhp/465 kW derived from the twin turbo V12 and a 0-60mph of 4.4 seconds (0-100kph, 4.6 seconds) give expression to the car’s dynamic looks. The swept lines of the fastback body of Wraith, a style whose origins can be found in the 1930s era of film noir, most clearly signal its purposeful character.

New Civic Concept car.
The brand unveiled a new Civic Concept at the event, one that showcases a new design language for the model. Dressed in Nickelodeon-inspired green paint (which will indeed be a production color), the Concept rides on a lower, wider, but most importantly global platform that will underpin every 10th-generation Civic made. That includes sedan, coupe, five-door hatch, Si, and Type R models.
As a cherry on top, every single one of those cars will eventually see American shores, starting with the sedan in fall, the coupe in winter, and hatchback/performance variants soon after.

i3 on Amazon in Japan!
The all-electric i3 is a pivotal car for BMW. It’s the company’s first-ever regular-production electric vehicle, it inaugurated BMW’s i sub-brand and it has now become the first car that can be purchased on Amazon.
Starting this week, tech-savvy car shoppers in Japan car buy or lease a brand new BMW i3 in just a few clicks. The i3 has its own Amazon page with a full gallery of high-res pictures, a detailed description of the car, basic technical specifications and a list of the major options such as the gasoline-powered range extended. The web page replaces the traditional brochure that is given to buyers when they visit a dealership.

Is the Nissan Maxima a 4 door sports car?
It’s been over two decades since the Nissan Maxima could truly be described as a “four-door sports car,” but Nissan insists on continuing to use that flattering descriptor.

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Thursday, April 23, 2015

The Middle East Indie Music Jukebox April 22, 2015

And here we go again! 

Roll out the jukebox and get ready for something special with triplew.me.

This week we have 2 Empty Corner segments and more of the same, great indie tunes!

Love the talk with bands!

James wants to be a music programmer.

Here is the lineup.

02 EC - Josh Radio Edit 10:50

03 Physical Graffiti RADIO - SEG 1 10:35

03 Physical Graffiti RADIO - SEG 2 5:39
01 Cairokee - Geina El Donia Fi Laffa 4:46

04 ANURYZM - Humanoid [Official Lyric Video]_ZKJWVIRXEvU_youtube 6:50

Sandmoon - Untitled (Live Session_Soundtrack Song).mp3 5:47

The Podcast!

The Language Call-in April 22, 2015

It is question time and on this show we asked about you and what you are doing to sustain your mother tongue or have you lost the connection to a language?

Here is a look at what we were reading.

When you let the language slip away!

It is up to us to protect and sustain the languages we speak!


And here is a look at what you had to say.

I'm Russian, been speaking French since I was 7, speak English. Learnt Italian for a year, Swedish beginner's...

How many languages is too much to know? I took to learning New Testament Greek on my own as well

I grew up in Dubai, so I have a basic knowledge of Arabic too. Languages need to be celebrated and preserved


But there are German schools here, French  schools, Swedish schools, Japanese schools, etc... 

Maintenan your mother tounge language but love the idea of  the world speaks a common language helps globalization.

This is a topic really close to my heart. I think in English and translate into what should be my "mother tongue"- Gujarati. My brother who is just 3 years younger speaks even less Gujarati than I do. So I've started

Hi James as you may or may not know back home in Canada the government will offer for free or at least subsidize new immigrants English lessons so they can better immerse themselves into  Canadian culture and in some cases French for Quebec.   Do you feel that the UAE government should consider offering free Arabic lessons for expats here (as obviously the UAE does not have immigrants) in order to preserve the Arabic culture?  I, for one, would immediately sign up as the costs for lessons in Dubai, currently, are completely and astronomically unreasonable.  Thanks.

I'm Iraqi with Armenian origins living in the UAE, who learned English and French during my high school.  I believe that each language has a it's own culture and u should feel it as in each has it's own phrases and terms which reflects the heritage.  Therefore languages should be preserved.

...So I've started recording videos of my grandfather narrating stories in Gujarati and audio notes of my mom's recipes. Maitri

In South Africa there are 9 official languages. One of them is called Afrikaans (dialect of Dutch) and as one of the worlds youngest languages is prettymuch a dying language. Sad but a reality.

The one thing I dislike about English is that I tend to become lazy about learning new languages! My mother is Welsh and my father is German and I was born in South Africa. When my mother was angry at me as a child I was told off in Welsh but we spoke english at home. Bee

I've downloaded this app "Duolingo" to brush up on my French (that I learned in school long ago)

So I've started recording videos of my grandfather narrating stories, anecdotes and idioms/proverbs in Gujarati and audio notes of my mom's recipes (so I remember what the different ingredients are called). Maitri

We have a whatsapp group of cousins of various ages and I enjoy being a part of it simply because sometimes they share jokes in our mother tongue- Gujarati- and I actually learn a new word or two through this. Maitri

Hi James. Re. Arabic classes, there are currently free classes but in the context of religious studies .. So , they do offer such classes . 

A friend had told me once that there is a committee in France that works to "update the language". Hire I wish every language had a dedicated committee of members that added new words as the need arise every year...

Urdu is another language that's losing speakers... it is such a poetic language but youngsters today find it old fashioned and boring and cumbersome. That's rather sad and I think music could be one way of getting the younger generation on board... Maitri

Afrikaans is one of the eleven official languages in SA and there are nine provinces. Thanx, Neo

Unfortunately some of the current generation thinks that learning or talking in the native language is not so cool. Parents start speaking to their kidsin English from the cradle. Glen

I would advise everybody to not neglect their parent language. 
When I was a teenager in France I didn't want to learn Arabic and my mother didn't make any effort either to teach me. We thought I would not need it. 
God ended sending me here in the middle east and I need to learn it from scratch!