22 August 2010

multi touch pad for next to nothing

This blog post i will be talking about how to create a multi touch pad or table. These days, everything is going the way of the natural user interface (NUI). iPad, iPhone, HTC, Android etc etc.

I came across this technology while being blown away by a few youtube videos. People have been creating huge multi touch tables that microsoft sells for over $10 000 and making it for under $800.

I will be explaining a simple way of creating a NUI using minimal materials.

Things you will need:
Cardboard box
Piece of glass / acrylic
Piece of A3 paper
Windows PC

Start by making the touch pad. make a hole in the side of the cardboard box and put the Webcams cable through the hole. place the webcam facing up and use some putty to keep it in place. Put the piece of glass over the top of the cardboard box and place the piece of A3 paper over the piece of glass and make sure to tape down the piece of paper.

Now that the you have made the touch pad, now its time to do the software side of this project.
Download the file bellow and then continue with the instructions

Once you have downloaded the file, extract the file to your desktop

Run the file "confguration"
depending on your computer and webcam, play around with the settings until when you touch the glass, you get just a single white dot when ever your fingers touch the surface
Once your settings are correct click "escape"

Now that you have configured the pad, we can now run a little demo to see the results
Go into the demo file and double click on C++ demos and run the "Smoke_demo"

Now you should have your first multi touch application.

Although i would love to give you further information, i am only at this stage at the moment.
Will keep you all filled in once i make further progress.

Here is a link for a forum that talks all about NUI

12 August 2010

Create a website

Most people these days that read blogs already have a limited knowledge of creating a website. this is more aimed at the user that is wanting to create a simple website that will be able to boost their companies brand or even boost product sales.


This will not be a guide to creating a HTML or Flash website. This is going to give you a few web links that you will be free or you will have to pay a small fee to use their web design programs.

I have used one of the three websites i will be talking about. Withtank.com was super simple to use and made creating a website fun and interactive. all three websites including web hosting and domain registration as part of their packages. All of their pricing is on a par with each others and is relatively cheaper then hiring a web designer to create a custom website.

do now get me wrong, hiring a web designer is a much better way to go, but this is more focused on people that would rather not spend extra cash on something they are not sure will take off. In a future post i will be discussing creating a website using a HTML down-loadable layout.

Well i am not going to stop you all from going out and starting up your first website. for any further information, please do not hesitate to contact me.



11 August 2010

HD camcorder reviews

HD camcorder reviews

As the high definition age comes upon us, we are all begining to jump on the band wagon by purchasing HDTV's, blu-ray players and high definition video cameras. problem with buying HD camcorders is the fact that there are so many makes and models that are quality buys and have similar features. When multiple things have similar features and price, how do you differentiated between them.

I have had this very issue with deciding on which compact HD camcorder to buy. Here is a list of the top cams on the market. We will discuss a few of them and i will give a conclusion as to which on i would buy.

Sanyo CG10
Sanyo CG20
Kodak Zi8
Kodak playsport
sony bloggie pm5
sony bloggie cm5
Flip range

Firstly HD has a few different formats that you should be aware of. I will be posting an article on what the differences are, but in the mean time i will put the formats in order of quality

1)1080p 30fps
2)720p 60fps
4)720p 30fps

Those are the main formats that an HD camcorder will shoot in. the obvious choice would be to go and find a camcorder that has 1080p capability. you would think this is the best idea, but you would be mistaken. some portable camera's may shoot in 1080p but have no optical zoom or other features that would make using it a lot easier.

What are you looking for in a video camera?
well, i am looking for the following:
1) 720p 60fps
2) 1080p
3) Optical zoom
4) HDMI / mini HDMI output
5) decent interface
6) Easy USB access

Now lets have a quick review of each of the above cameras and then i will conclude with my top pick.

Sanyo CG10:
The Sanyo has a decent optical zoom along with memory card expansion slot, HDMI out and makes it easy to shoot a relatively stable shot with its pistol grip

The Sanyo is an older camera on the market which only does 720p. It also has a measly 1 hour constant shooting battery life.

Sanyo CG20
Full 1080p and 720p 60fps have been added to the CG20. It has kept the optical zoom and the handy pistol grip. The compression rate of the filming is great and allows for over an hours worth of shooting on a single 8Gb SDHC card.

The size of the camera is not that competitive to its rivals like the kodak's and the sony's. Features like smile shutter, face tracing and other features are not available on these models.

Kodak Zi8 and Playsport
Shooting modes include 1080p and 720 60fps, cable interface is amazing and all cables are included in the packaging. The best part of the Zi8 is the fact that an external microphone can be added to the camera which allows higher quality sound recording. The playsport has the same features and inner workings as the Zi8 but is built for rugged uses. You can use it underwater to a depth of 3m and the cam is fully dust resistant.

The Zi8 feels cheap and has a poor build quality, compared to the bloggie and the flip range, the Zi8 feels bulky. If you had the qoice, you would probably buy the playsport over the Zi8 anyday.

Sony Bloggie PM5
The Sony Bloggie is one of the best and most compact camcorders on the market at the moment. It records at full HD 30fps and allows for easy uploading to youtube. One of the best features of the PM5 is the 360 degree snap on attachment that makes the PM5 capable of shooting a 360 degree fish eye view of the world!

Pricing on the Sony Bloggie is above the rest of its competition. Sony is finally allowing SD card storage, “thank the godly lord”. Sony Bloggie does not have the features of the Kodaks, but its quality does over rule that.

I hope that the information on all the choices has been enlightening. My choice on this topic should be clear from my information on the Sanyo CG20. Pricing on all of the above products are very similar and more often then not you can find a very good deal. Please contact me if you need any more information on any of these topics or any of the camcorders in this blog post.

16 July 2010

How to set up a blog

How to set up a blog

Step by step to setting up a wordpress.com blog
This is for all of those who have always wanted to express yourself. A blog is one of the best mediums and methods to get your voice heard without being subjected to public humiliation. During this blog post I will explain to you in a step by step and easy method, how to set up a blog using wordpress.com
Most blogging providers such as wordpress and blogger allow you to fully customize your blog using a web coding language like HTML and CSS. To the average person that uses the internet, this is one massively daunting task that drives most away from starting a blog. www.wordpress.com makes things extremely easy by giving you inbuilt templates that makes the use of web coding redundant. Now everyone is able to blog to their hearts content.

Here is that step by step process I promised:
Step 1:
Go to www.wordpress.com and click signup

Step 2:
Enter your details into the corresponding blocks, remember that more then likely your username will end up being the name of your blog that people will have to enter as a website address for them to read your blog. So make the name interesting, but make sure its easy to remember. Hit next

Step 3:
Now decide on the title of your blog, make it something that means a lot to you and your everyday life. This is more then likely the title that all your blog posts will be connected to. Hit signup

Step 4:
Fill in your personal details that are required and write a short paragraph about yourself.
Click save profile

Step 5:
Go and log into the email account that you signed up with and click the first link. This is in order to register your account, remember that if you do not click that link within 2 days, your account will be deleted and you will have to restart the process.

Step 6:
Click home
Click my blogs
Click Dashboard

Step 7:
Now we are going to give your blog a custom look and feel. Wordpress.com does not allow for extreme amounts of customization. You are able to click a pre-made theme and add a few extra widgets, that is about the brunt of it.
Click appearance
Choose a theme and click activate

Step 8:
Now it is time to start adding some widgets. A widget is simply a little extra application that can be added to a website, blog, some mobile phones and even some computers. It can range from adding a calendar to your blog to incorporating your Facebook, Flickr and Twitter to your blog. These widgets are loads of fun but remember not to add too many, it can clutter up your blog and make it difficult to read.
Click widgets, under appearance
Drag and drop a widget onto either sidebar 1 or sidebar 2

Step 9:
Now you are ready to start your blogging, blogging is very easy to do. All you have to do is type what you want to say, change fonts, add in picture, add in links and once you are finished you just need to click post.
Click posts
Click add new

Give your post a title! Type your story in the block, edit it however you wish. Add in a picture, movie, music and once you are finished create a category that your blog fits in and finally just hit post.

Now you are finished your first post, happy posting

Now that you are all experts at posting a blog post, here is some stuff that you can do some research on or you can comment bellow and I will get back to you with any answers you need.
1)     1) You are able to post blog posts for wordpress.com from your cellphone
2)    2)  You can edit the posts HTML to make it exactly how you want it to be
3)     3) Tagging your blog posts can help in getting you more traffic through your blog

Hope this blog post has helped you all, chat soon and don’t be scared to comment

14 July 2010

QR code

QR codes

Most people are totally unaware of this set of new emerging technologies. First used to track parts in a manufacturing plant and used to track postage QR codes has now been adapted for mobile phone users and has been coined with the term “mobile tagging.

While most of the central and western world are still living without knowledge of QR codes technology, the east have been using this tech for the past few years, the uses have increased ten fold

What I will do is explain how the new emerging technologies works in the simplest terms. I will give picture references and may even create a youtube video, but will keep you all posted on further developments

QR codes in its most basic form, is a 2D barcodes system that was designed by Denso-Wave in 1994 to allow data to be decoded at high speeds. These days one can read and decode QR codes on their mobile phone using the inbuilt camera.

Reading QR codes

QR codes has been developed and aimed at the mobile phone market. Many mobile phone companies have started providing QR codes readers as standard loaded applications on your newly bought mobile phones. There are also standalone programs that have been coded for multiple, if not all-mobile platforms. Bellow is a list of a few different downloadable QR codes reader applications for different mobile platforms.

     KAYWA Reader
     Nokia Reader
     i-nigma Reader
     Active Print
For further information about these products and their compatibility you can go to

QR Code uses

If you go to the link bellow, you can create your own, non-commercial, QR codes generator, which allows you to encode 2D barcodes with one of four fields.

o   This takes the user directly to the website once code is read
o   Gives back text information to the user
       Phone number
o   Allows the coder to make the user phone a number or adds a number to a contact, like a business card
o   Compiles an SMS that would be sent by the phone

QR codes is mostly used in marketing at the moment, but in the east it also has many other uses. More and more businesses are adding QR codes to their business cards. Instead of having to manually input a new contact into your mobile phone, one can take a photo of 2D barcodes and it will automatically add a new contact to your mobile phone. This in my own life would be extremely useful, as most business cards I receive are easily misplaced and forgotten about.


When going shopping, most products have a lot of information on the packaging or on marketing advertising near the product. How would you like to know infinite amounts of information about the product and its background? With this set of new emerging technology, you are able to take a photo of the products 2D barcodes and it will take you directly to the products site for more information. This would make comparing products easier and more affective in making the most informed choice.


In the east, they have implemented many cases of green ticketing. When booking for concerts, flights and other events, you receive an email or multimedia message on your phone which is a 2D barcodes. When arriving at the respective event or flight, you bring up the 2D barcodes on your screen and swipe it over a camera in order to get in. this eliminates paper use and each barcode can be encoded with your direct information, which allows for crimeless ticketing.

Overall we can see that QR codes is becoming more and more useful for people to use and is able to do many of our daily tasks with more performance and can easily simplify our tasks.

Have a try and see what this image does
Download one of the applications above and read the image bellow

13 July 2010

What will be written in this space

Many have never read, let alone started their own blog. Society i general is technologically stable, this in simple terms means that most people within society do not know what is coming next. They are not aware of the tools, that marketing guru's uses in order to capture their imagination and hold their attention for just long enough in order for their subconscious to have an image burnt and etched into it.
Majority of people come into contact with multiple genres of technology on a daily basis. Weather it is something as simple as receiving emails and phone calls, or as complicated as touch screen inputs and servers controlling living environments.
No matter how hard one tries, we are all slaves to elements of technology. Electricity in its most basic form is the most basic of technologies. Problems we are exposed to in the present day is the problem that technology is becoming routine, we are all living in a technological bubble.
This blog will be talking about technologies that are going to strive to burst that bubble and have society pushing for newer and more complex technologies coming into the public sector. I will be doing future technology reviews , informative technological posts and the occasional gadget review. I will even be posting information on how technologies work with informative pictures

i hope you all enjoy