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Conor Lyons

Weekly Round Up

By | Business advice, Social Media, Technology, Weekly Roundup | No Comments

This Week In The News

Augmented Reality Coming To A Space Station Near You – AR Space Googles

AR Space Glasses

Augmented Reality is entering the final frontier – space. NASA is teaming up with Osterhout Design Group to bring Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality glasses to be used in exploratory activities. To do so would seriously advance future missions in space.

Another Teaser From Game Of Thrones To Whet Your Appetite

Not exactly industry news but it’s pretty important to almost everyone on the planet. Our Mother of Dragons is turning her gaze towards Westeros.

Oculus Rift Is Facing Tough Competition – Valve SteamVR

Valve SteamAR

There’s a new Virtual Reality headset making waves and critics believe the Oculus Rift should watch out. It’s definitely worth watching PC World’s review of the excellent HTC Valve’s Steam VR headset.

Everything You Need To Know About The Apple SmartWatch – In An Infographic

apple watch

With all the details flying around about the Apple SmartWatch we thought it was time someone put all the facts into a nice simple Infographic.

The BBC Becomes A Leader In Tech Innovation – The Coder Generation

BBC Coders

The BBC has helped to make huge strides in encouraging younger generations to code. One million Micro Bits – a stripped-down computer similar to a Raspberry Pi – will be given to all pupils starting secondary school in the autumn term. They hope that this will help to increase digital skills among young people and help to fill the digital skills gap.


Tips & Training

1 Facebook Tip Everyone Should Do Now – Seriously

Not so long ago we discovered a Security loop hole hidden within Facebook Apps. Here’s how to protect your private information from 3rd parties.

Find Out Your Social Media Rank with – Klout

Klout is a free service that can help determine how well you are doing on Social Media. It looks at your engagement and post frequency to deduce how active you are. More than that however, Klout looks past the number of followers you have and looks at how ‘genuine’ they are. That is that they are real human beings and not just spammers.


Apple Smart Watch

By | Technology | No Comments

Unless you have been hiding away somewhere (under a wifi-less rock maybe) Apple’s newest tech offering would have made your newsfeed.

Yes on Monday Tim Cook revealed the intricacies of the Apple SmartWatch including the numerous apps it can hold, the battery life you can expect, and the price of an 18-carat gold version that is enough to make the majority of us gasp in frugal bewilderment.

To make all this information a little easier to digest we created this rather smart infographic. Let us know if you plan to buy one (especially if you go for the gold one).

apple-smart-watch

Weekly Round Up

By | Business advice, Social Media, Technology, Weekly Roundup | No Comments

This Week In The News

Furniture from the future is here – Ikea Wireless Charging Furniture

Ikea-charger

Ikea seems to have read all of our minds and provided something we all desire: Wireless furniture. For all tech lovers out there this will make deciding where to buy furniture from a hell of lot easier.

New offering from Samsung – Samsung Galaxy 6

galaxys6

The newest offering from Samsung Galaxy, the Samsung Galaxy 6, is all kinds of modern and sleek. It will be carried by all major networks and looks to be a vast improvement on past models. We can’t wait to get our hands on one!

Augmented Reality Comes to Android Wear – Ingress

ingress-on-android-wear-concept

It wasn’t going to be long before Augmented Reality games were going to be introduced to wearable tech such as watches. It would be one of the easiest ways to meld the real world with an augmented virtual one. Ingress players out there will be some of the first to experience it and many other versions will be following soon mark our words.

RIP Leonard Nimoy

This week the world lost a truly magnificent man. Whether you were a trekkie or not you would have been touched by this man’s words or actions at some point in your life.

R.I.P Leonard Nimoy


Tips & Training

Eight lessons about social media strategy – From Frank Underwood

Social Media Strategy Tips as taught by Frank Underwood. Some of his quotes may seem a bit severe but if broken down and applied to Social Media? It makes quite a bit of sense.

Want FREE Photos for social media? – Canva

Imagery is vital to any successful Social Media campaign. It encourages engagement, displays calls to actions in an innovative way and captures your audience’s attention. But it can also be a time-consuming task. Different Social Media platforms have different dimensions and free stock photography or graphics can be hard to source. Canva provides a solution to these issues. Free to sign up and with a variety of free content for you to use it also comes with defined templates for each Social Media platform.


Social Trends

We could live without – #thatdress

#thatdress. We all saw it and hand on heart I think we all contributed to the conversation. The abundance of tweets and posts that hit the globe occurred almost instantaneously faster and more wide spread than any other trend before. It also annoyed many as the tweets above prove.

This is the last time we mention it.

We need more of – #quokkaselfie

This is the kind of conversation that all companies can take advantage of. It may not fit with your company image exactly but trust us when we say it will drive engagement and get other accounts to start thinking about you. And that never hurts.

PS. Look at that face!

A History Of The Raspberry Pi

By | Technology | No Comments

Introduction

You may have heard in the news of a credit sized card computer that is taking the world by storm? If not here is a full history of the Raspberry Pi and an insight into uses for the device from the easy projects to the indepth harder projects.

 

The History

The Raspberry Pi was created in Febuary 2012 by the Raspberry Pi Foundation, Oringially setup to promote and teach basic cimputer science in schools and colleges around the UK. They initially released 2 Devices the Model A and the Model B, these computers ranged in spec and cabilities. Soon after the release of these products a community was formed and thousends of “Tech-Heads” (Including me!) bought one and started to create new projects with it, for instance one of the first things I did was setup a Home Media Centre and played the popular game Minecraft.

The products were so popular due to their cost ranging from $25 – $35 (£17 – £23) they were efficient and durable which made them easy to modify and crate projects on, The device ran Linux a popular OS for developers due to it being open-source.

On the Raspberry Pi website they created 2 images that could be installed easily onto a sd card which would then act as the OS for the device, one of the images was based off of Debian a popular lightweight Linux OS and was called Raspbian, the other was called Raspbmc and was based off the popular media centre software Kodi (Formally known as XBMC).

In Feburary 2014 they had been reported to have sold 4.5 millions boards, soon after this success they released the Model A+ and Model b+ which provided more GPIO’s and used less power to run. In early 2015 the Raspberry PI 2 was announced with increased Mhz by 200 to bring it to 900Mhz and doubled the ram to make it 1GB.

Products Spec

RP1 Model A

CPU: 700 MHz ARM1176JZF-S single-core with ARMv6 CPU architecture

Memory: 256mb

USB ports: 1

Video Output: HDMI (rev 1.3 & 1.4), 14 HDMI resolutions from 640×350 to 1920×1200 plus various PALand NTSC standards, composite video (PAL and NTSC) via RCA jack

GPIO: 8

Power Ratings: 300mA (1.5w)

Power Source: 5V Micro USB

Size: 85.60 mm × 56.5 mm (3.370 in × 2.224 in) – not including protruding connectors

 

RP1 Model A+

CPU: 700 MHz ARM1176JZF-S single-core with ARMv6 CPU architecture

Memory: 256mb

USB ports: 1

Video Output: HDMI (rev 1.3 & 1.4), 14 HDMI resolutions from 640×350 to 1920×1200 plus various PAL and NTSC standards, composite video (PAL and NTSC) via 3.5 mm TRRS jackshared with audio out

GPIO: 17

Power Ratings: 200mA (1w)

Power Source: 5V Micro USB

Size: 65 mm × 56.5 mm (2.56 in × 2.22 in) – (same as HAT board) and 10 mm high

 

RP1 Model B

CPU: 700 MHz ARM1176JZF-S single-core with ARMv6 CPU architecture

Memory: 512mb

USB ports: 2

Video Output: HDMI (rev 1.3 & 1.4), 14 HDMI resolutions from 640×350 to 1920×1200 plus various PAL andNTSC standards, composite video (PAL and NTSC) via RCA jack

GPIO: 8

Power Ratings: 700mA (3.5w)

Power Source: 5V Micro USB

Size: 85.60 mm × 56.5 mm (3.370 in × 2.224 in) – not including protruding connectors

 

RP1 Model B+

CPU: 700 MHz ARM1176JZF-S single-core with ARMv6 CPU architecture

Memory: 512mb

USB ports: 4

Video Output: HDMI (rev 1.3 & 1.4), 14 HDMI resolutions from 640×350 to 1920×1200 plus various PAL and NTSC standards, composite video (PAL and NTSC) via 3.5 mm TRRS jackshared with audio out

GPIO: 17

Power Ratings: 600mA (3w)

Power Source: 5V Micro USB

Size: 85.60 mm × 56.5 mm (3.370 in × 2.224 in) – not including protruding connectors

 

RP2 Model B

CPU: 700 MHz ARM1176JZF-S single-core with ARMv6 CPU architecture

Memory: 512mb

USB ports: 4

Video Output: HDMI (rev 1.3 & 1.4), 14 HDMI resolutions from 640×350 to 1920×1200 plus various PAL and NTSC standards, composite video (PAL and NTSC) via 3.5 mm TRRS jackshared with audio out

GPIO: 17

Power Ratings: 600mA (3w)

Power Source: 5V Micro USB

Size: 85.60 mm × 56.5 mm (3.370 in × 2.224 in) – not including protruding connectors

 

 

Projects

There has been many projects on the raspberry pi some of which include:

  • Web servers
  • Media Centres
  • Nas Devices
  • Routers
  • Arcade Machines
  • And much more

 

My favourite is the Media Centre option, I have used XBMC for many years now before the Raspberry Pi was out but now I have the Pi I can have a small device that sits behind the TV that turns it into a Media Centre, where using the XBMC Remote I can access all my films and TV shows remotely from any room in the house.

The Colour Changing Dress Solved!!!

By | General | No Comments

Many people have seen this dress.  Some see a distinct White & Gold, some are convinced it is Blue & Black.  Everyone is confused, people are taking sides, families are being torn apart.  So we thought we would do some investigating.

Breaking News: This is what the dress ACTUALLY LOOKS LIKE

1227241296046

This following image shows you the actual 2 colours of the dress and the 2 colours it appears to be.

cracked-it

The following tweet will explain how this happens.

https://twitter.com/rebelashton/status/571116554357596160

So there you have it.  The dress is actually a grey/blue colour and dark gold.  Your brain picks out the colours you see depending on a variety of factors, angle of the screen, the lighting in the room etc.
You can thank us, or the tweeter, later.

10 Google Earth Locations Worth Looking At

By | Entertainment, Technology | 2 Comments

Ever searched through Google earth to find funny things? The world is an amazing place full of interesting people, fascinating cultures and down right weird activities happening day in and day out.

As a Treat for you all this Halloween and to give you a nice little break from work (also a lot of these are GREAT conversation starters) we thought we would compile a list of our favourite Google Map moments. You see when Google were first compiling the imagery to go with locations around the world the camera that they used managed to capture some rather interesting pictures. Have a look and see just how strange and beautiful this world can be.

 

1) Airplane Scapeyard

32 08’59.96″ N, 110 50’09.03″W

Tucson, Arizona

gearth1

There’s something strangely beautiful about the way these airplanes are laid out. They may never fly again but they make for a nice Google Map moment.

 

 

2) Firefox Logo

45° 7’25.87″N 123° 6’48.97″W

Dayton, Oregon, USA

gearth2

Just in case Aliens were wondering what the best web browser really is. . . Marketing at its best.

 

 

3) Heart-Shaped Land Formation

20°56’15.47″S, 164°39’30.56″E

New Caledonia

gearth3

This beautifully shaped formation in French New Caledonia may be the most loving place in the world. We’re surprised it isn’t the number 1 place to propose!

 

 

4) Batman Symbol

26.357896, 127.783809

Okinawa, Japan

gearth4

Again another one for the Aliens. Just in case they’re really in trouble they know who what sign to use.

 

5) Sword Fight

40.45761,-80.007731

Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA

Nothing to see here. Just Gandalf and Merlin having a sword fight.

 

6) Seagull Attack

50.823567,-0.133599

Brighton, England, United Kingdom

Anyone who lives in Brighton knows that this isn’t a joke. This is a warning to anyone who tries to walk down the pier with a bag of chips.

 

7) Guitar-Shaped Pool

36.551886, -4.620911

Málaga, Spain

Who wants to settle for a normal rectangular swimming pool? Not this person, no way, ‘let’s make it look like a Guitar!.’ Excellent idea.

 

8) Heart-Shaped Lake in Ohio

41.303921,-81.901693

Columbia Station, Ohio, USA

Another one for the romantics. This lovely lake can be found in the middle of Ohio, what do you think? Natural or man made?

 

9) The Remotest Island

-37.067805, -12.314559

Tristan da Cunha

This Google image captures an island that many would never see or even know about. The island of Tristan de Cunha is the 2nd remotest island (after Hawaii) but we’ve given it the number 1 mantle as truly no one goes there. It is part of the UK, is located in the South Atlantic and only has a population of 297!

 

10) Parked Jet Fighter

51.362335,7.557918

Hagen, Germany

Because where else would you park your fighter jet?

What about you? Have you seen something on Google Maps that has blown your mind? Let us know either in the comments below or on Twitter @TheNovaAgency.

HAPPY HALLOWEEN

10 Tech Tricks For Halloween

By | Technology | No Comments

Things are getting creepy here at Nova and we thought we would send you 10 Horrifyingly helpful tech tricks. The following tricks will help you win the battle over everyday tech troubles.

1) Say goodbye to tangled headphone cords, Get yourself a hair clip…

46

2) You know what they say, Dirty Keyboard, Dirty Mind…

88-before-you-throw-away-a-post-it

 

3) Feeling lazy? Can’t be bothered to hold your phone to watch a video? Steal someone’s glasses…

87-lean-your-phone-on-your-sunglassess

 

4) bbboooiiiiiinnnnngggg!!!!

41

 

5) How much life is left in your battery?…

96-drop-the-battery

 

6) Not just for paper…

15

 

7) You 1 – 0 Advertisers

phoneads

 

8) Ice Ice Baby…

95236af4572e9cde6b29576be8361731

 

9) Don’t get bogged down with cables… pun definitely intended

17

 

10) The question that has plagued humanity for the whole of 5 years, how to open plastic packaging?

32

 

 

YOU’RE WELCOME

 Next week Treats…

 

Reference
http://www.lifehack.org
http://lifehacksdaily.com/

What Is Cloud Storage? And Why Is It The Future?

By | Apps, Business, Technology | 3 Comments

cloud-banner

What is Cloud Storage?

Cloud Storage is becoming more and more popular but what is this ‘Cloud Storage’ exactly? Cloud Storage is a term for storing digital data on a remote server accessible via the web.  There are many uses to cloud storage for example backing up personal data, backing up software and general storage. The Term “Cloud Computing” was believed to have been coined first by Joseph Licklider in the 1960’s however, the use wasn’t commercialised until the mid 2000’s with Amazon launching there S3 service in 2006. I know what you may all be thinking, storing all my data in a random location is surely not as safe as storing it on the USB I carry around with me? Well Mega has pioneered in the Encryption world with an encryption method that uses an advanced AES algorithm. What does this do you ask? Well this gives users the ability to encrypt all their data and even Mega cannot access your files because they do not know the key you have encrypted the files with. Kim Dotcom the owner of Mega set a reward of up to €10,000 to the first person to hack into this system. So far there hasn’t been a single successful attempt.

So Why Is Cloud Storage The Future?

With 180 Million people using cloud storage, 65% of US companies shifting to the cloud storage since 2011 and even more converting across around the world every day, it’s hard not to think that the future will be stored on a remote server.

So Which Service Should I Choose?

There are hundreds of Cloud Storage sites online but which one should you choose? The big hitters in cloud storage world are Dropbox, Google Drive, One Drive, Box, iCloud and Mega. Each one of these provide a FREE storage space ranging from 2GB to 50GB.

Dropbox

Dropbox is the most recognised and most popular service in the storage world with a long term membership base and easy to use features.  It is it’s ever growing membership and easy to sync options,  It should be taken into consideration however, that they only provide free users with 2GB upon signup – the smallest free offer of the large companies.

Google Drive

Google Drive is another one of Google’s FREE additions to their Gmail accounts. Google Drive gives you a large 15GB FREE upon signup to Google. With many features the same as Dropbox and an amount 7 times more than Dropbox, Google is soon to become the bigger cloud storage company.

iCloud

iCloud is a prefect storage solution for anyone using an apple device, as iCloud allows you to backup all your devices to one central storage account. However, they only give you 5Gb for free. Therefore if you backup more than one device you will very quickly use up all your online space. However, if you are not using an apple device then you are much better off with another service such as Mega.

Mega

Mega is the bigger and better rebirth of Megaupload. The US government shut down Megaupload in 2012 on copyright infringement grounds due to thousands of users uploading pirated copies of popular Films, TV shows, Software, Music amongst other things. Since then Kim Dotcom the owner of Mega & Megaupload has made a extremely secure site with a massive 50GB FREE upon signup and an untouchable approach to copyright infringement.

My conclusion

The Mega website is the greatest of them all as far as protection and storage space, It provided you a very large storage with protection from even the company themselves. I strongly suggest you try out Mega, even if it is just to store a few files. If you have any Questions at all about Cloud Service please do get in contact! Either Tweet @CLyonsNDM or e-mail info@novadigitalmedia.com

How To Protect Yourself Against The Never Ending War Of Computer Viruses.

By | Business, Technology | One Comment

We have all heard of it Computer Viruses, many of us have had encounters with them in the past.  However did you know you could have one on your computer without knowing it? On the 2rd June 2014 the U.S Department of Justice announced that they took down a botnet called “Gameover Zeus, however warnings from many internet giants have told us we need to protect ourselves as they will come back bigger and stronger. Their aim, to steal banking data. This isn’t the first time this has happened and will not be the last.  With currently 15,000 machines in the UK infected with Gameover Zeus, it’s time to protect yourselves.

This is what we would suggest you should do to protect yourself against such malicious attacks.

Update Your Operating Systems

Don’t worry we are not suggesting you upgrade your Windows 7 machine to Windows 8, you will see in the bottom right of your screen sometimes a popup saying “Windows Update Available” you NEED to keep these updated.

!!!WARNING!!!

If you are running Windows XP, YOU ARE VULNERABLE. The support updates ended in April 2014, which means windows will not release any security updates, YOU NEED TO UPGRADE TO ANOTHER OPERATING SYSTEM.

 

Update your Software

Keep your software up to date.  Things like Internet Browsers have weaknesses and these security issues get breached by hackers. However, the browsers patch the issues in updates, so by updating the browsers you keep yourself secure against attacks. There are many browsers to choose from; Google Chrome, Firefox, Safari and Internet Explorer.  It’s purely down to personal preference which you choose.

 

Anti-Virus

Make sure your have installed and updated your anti-virus software. Do not worry about extra cost if you do not have anti-virus software, you do not have to purchase the most expensive software to stay protected and there are many FREE ones available online such as windows Security Essentials and AVG.

Updating your Antivirus doesn’t mean downloading a new copy of the software each time, there is a database where the software updates itself, and they are called ‘definitions’.

 

Remove unwanted programs “Advanced”

You may find unwanted programs installed on your PC without knowing they have been installed internet explorer toolbars are very common and many users will notice an increase in this problem.

There are many tools to remove these, but please be aware you can uninstall vital software this way and is only suggested for advanced users. The best tool for this is called CCleaner, you can uninstall programs, clean your software amongst many other features.

 

Be careful Installing software

Many software installers will have a “click next” process, which means you just keep clicking until it’s installed.  But beware you will be installing “extra” programs within this installer. Always read before you click and in many cases you can click “Custom Installation” where you can select what you would like to click on and install.

 

If you stick by this saying you will be safe online.

If In doubt, Leave It Out.

 

 

Resources

How to Update Windows: http://windows.microsoft.com/en-GB/windows/help/windows-update

How to Update Chrome: https://support.google.com/chrome/answer/95414?hl=en-GB

How to Update Firefox:  https://support.mozilla.org/en-US/kb/update-firefox-latest-version

Download AVG:  http://free.avg.com

Download Microsoft Security Essentials: http://windows.microsoft.com/en-GB/windows/security-essentials-download

Download CCleaner: https://www.piriform.com/ccleaner

CCleaner Guide: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uQHOBkaP4ak

How to Remove Toolbars In Internet Explorer: http://www.pcworld.com/article/241720/how_to_remove_browser_toolbars_in_internet_explorer.html

6 Great Social Media Infographics

By | Business, Social Media | No Comments

The Social Media world is a fast moving and often extremely confusing place. Luckily a few lovely companies around the net have taken it upon themselves to create Infographics that convey vast amounts of information in a visually appetising way. Below are six such Infographics that I believe do a good job of covering the basics of Social Media when approaching it for the first time.

1. To Tweet Or Not To Tweet

Do not let the title of this Inforgraphic fool you. It covers all of the major Social Media platforms as well as Twitter. What’s great about this Inforgraphic is that it packs as much information in as possible without being too much. It gives you a short description, key metrics, key tips and the number of users on each platform.

To Tweet Or Not To Tweet

2. Top Social Media Marketing Trends In 2014

In order to perform well on Social Media it helps to be able to predict what will be successful and the part Social Media will play in our everyday lives. This infographic from Talkwalker tells you all of the above and also warns you of the ‘Digital Rebellion.’

Top Social Media Marketing Trends In 2014

3. Word Science

This Infographic delves a little deeper into the psychology behind the content that you create for sharing on Social Media. It informs you of the words that encourage shares, Retweets and ‘likes’ when you post on your blog, Facebook or Twitter accounts. The same words, in my experience, that one would use on Facebook work well on Google + whilst the words for Twitter can be easily used on Pinterest with similar success.
Word Science

4. 10 Quick Tips & Examples For Better Status Updates

Shortstack and the ‘Social Skinny’ offer this great inforgraphic. Presenting 10 great quick tips that can greatly improve your Social Media strategy from the offset. Some of the tips seem quite obvious, for example ‘share a tip’ but others are one’s that you might not think of straight away such as adding PS to the end of a status.

10 Quick Tips & Examples For Better Status Updates

5. How To Integrate Social Media Into Big Events

One of the greatest challenges on Social Media is how to implement it effectively when promoting an event or competition. This Infographic from NeoMobile gives you 5 simple steps that you should follow when utilizing Social Media into Big Events. All of the steps bar the first one can also be used for a competition if you so wish.
How To Integrate Social Media Into Big Events

6. 19 FB Etiquette Rules For Business

This Infographic is quite probably the most important of the bunch. Although it is for Facebook a lot of the points can be used across all platforms. Having poor manners and pushing your self onto other people in a rude way will do a lot of harm to your social media efforts, so be polite!

19 FB Etiquette Rules For Business

But Remember

If Content Is King Then Conversion Is Queen

 

If used correctly each of these Infographics can give your Social Media campaign the best start imaginable, but do not be afraid to look back at them at later stages as well!

Have you found any other fantastic Infographics?

Would you like a free social media consult to expand on the above?

If so then give us a quick call on 01708553320