November 27, 2013

World's First Twin-Seat Energy Efficient Helicopter Makes First Flight (Volocopter )

      The company named E-Volo based in Karlsruhe, Germany successfully made a test flight of Two- Seater Helicopter actually called Volocopter . Company says that it is safer, cleaner and simpler than normal helicopters. E-volo claims it is environment friendly and emission-free private helicopter. Instead of any combustion engine which are not environment friendly, it is powered by eighteen electrically driven rotors for propulsion.

     The maiden flight and first test flights were conducted in the dm-arena in Karlsruhe with the prototype of the 2-person VC200 on Sunday, November 17, 2013.

Here are some of the concepts explained by company itself :

What is a Volocopter?

    The Volocopter by e-volo is a completely novel, vertical take-off and landing (VTOL) manned aircraft, which cannot be classified in any known category. The fact that it was conceived of as a purely electrically powered aircraft sets it apart from conventional aircraft.

    Through the use of its many propellers, the Volocopter can take off and land vertically like a helicopter. A considerable advantage, apart from the simple construction without complex mechanics, is the redundancy of drives. This enables the safe landing of the volocopter even if some drives fail.

How Does the Volocopter Work?

    The controls work according to the fly-by-wire principle very easily by means of a joystick. As opposed to any other aircraft, the operation is child’s play. It takes off and lands vertically and the pilot pays little or no attention to the flight path angle, minimum speed, stall, mixture control, pitch adjustment and many other things which make conventional aviation so demanding.

    The propellers generate the entire ascending force, and by means of a selective change in rotary speed they simultaneously take care of the steering. Furthermore, as opposed to helicopters, no mechanical pitch control of the propellers is necessary whatsoever.

    The automatic position control and the directional control take place by means of several independent and mutually monitoring airborne computers which control the rotation speed of each drive separately.

An optional, additional pusher propeller enables an even faster flight.

Images: E-volo

November 26, 2013

A next-gen social network : Facebook is old school

    I read this wonderful article on what we need in a new next gen social network by Jonathan Saragossi. And I thought I would share it with readers of my blog.

        Facebook might be saying that its user base is increasing but the truth is that the innovators and early adopters are fleeing or leaving it in big numbers. Reason human mind wants something new always.
       As more services are entering the market and trying to get attention of users, people are finding out that their needs cannot be fulfilled by a single social network ; they need multiple social networks and communication channels. Taking my example I use Facebook, Google+, Twitter,LinkedIn, Blogger, Pinterest , Youtube, Vimeo, etc. Our tastes and hunger for new are making us choose different channels for our social networking needs. The result is fragmentation in the channels of service.
      It is all natural, in the life cycle of product to slowly lose its charm or  unless it somehow becomes a living organism with its own reproductive system and evolution, one will eventually wither and die. Facebook cannot evade this process – it regenerates with nuances, but is not reinventing itself.

Lets look at Diffusion of Innovation chart by Everett M. Rogers
Early adopters as shown in the Rogers’ bell curve

     Jonathan says this curve is missing something important – the two-way migration that happens over time. When the late majority joins in, the innovators and early adopters are already feeling uncomfortable.

    Hence he says the conclusion is undeniable; a new social network is needed. These are the things that will make it awesome and sustainable:
  • The multiple expressive me
  • Mobile first
  • Localized recommendations
  • Ownership
  • Income and commerce
  • Tool-set for hackers
  • The future
Want the read it in details, about the above pointers head to Jonathan's post  Facebook is for grandparents 
Jonathan Saragossi is the founder of IM Creator, a free website builder, and AppSite, a tool for promoting mobile applications. Jonathan is also a UX and marketing consultant for major startups including Any.Do and Playscape

Images : Flickr: carloszardoya
             Flickr : SeanENelson

November 25, 2013

The Awesome Science of Mindmapping

Mind mapping is a simple technique for drawing information in diagrams, instead of writing it in sentences. Mind mapping is a very serious and well researched subject, or art or something. Whatever it is a map of the mind is definately something to be valued and this 'instructionalicious' guide is no exception. Allow this infographic to simultaneously blow and map your mind.

The Awesome Science of Mindmapping
Explore more infographics like this one on the web's largest information design community - Visually.

November 22, 2013

What is OSS(Operations support systems) /BSS(Business support systems)?

Operations support systems (also called operational support systems or OSS) are computer systems used by telecommunications service providers. The term OSS most frequently describes "network systems" dealing with the telecom network itself, supporting processes such as maintaining network inventory, provisioning services, configuring network components, and managing faults.

A lot of the work on OSS has been centered on defining its architecture. Put simply, there are four key elements of OSS:
Processes-the sequence of events
Data-the information that is acted upon
Applications-the components that implement processes to manage data
Technology-how we implement the applications

Business support systems (BSS) are the components that a telephone operator or telco uses to run its business operations towards customer.
Basically it deals with the taking of orders, payment issues, revenues etc. The role of business support systems in a service provider is to cover four main areas:

  • Product management
  • Order management
  • Revenue management
  • Customer management

Product management-Product management supports product development, the sales and management of products, offers and bundles to businesses and mass-market customers. Product management regularly includes offering cross-product discounts, appropriate pricing and managing how products relate to one another.

Customer management-Service providers require a single view of the customer and regularly need to support complex hierarchies across customer-facing applications (customer relationship management). Customer management also covers requirements for partner management and 24x7 web-based customer self-service. Customer management can also be thought of as full-fledged customer relationship management systems implemented to help customer care agents handle the customers in a better and more informed manner.

Revenue management-Revenue management is a BSS focus on billing, charging and settlement, that can handle any combination of OSS services, products and offers. BSS revenue management supports OSS order provisioning and often partner settlement.Billing is an integral function offered by BSS systems and is not under the purview of Operation Support Systems.

Order management-Order management as a beginning of assurance is normally associated with operations support systems though business support systems are often the business driver for fulfillment management and order provisioning.

The future of OSS and BSS

Putting the user in charge
User expectations for flexibility and self-care options will only increase in the future. In other words, consumers will expect to be able to add or remove elements of their subscriptions at will and all by themselves, without having to call customer service. This is why real-time monitoring is one of the most important aspects for operators to implement.

Getting ahead of the user
Today, operators are expected to monitor user experience by mining and understanding the information available from their networks. The next step is to get ahead and correct problems before the user even becomes aware of them. Real-time monitoring and automation are the keys to achieving this goal, saving the operator money and improving customer-satisfaction levels.

Facts and figures

12 000 consulting and systems integration professionals are part of this team
1300 Consulting and Systems Integration projects per year are run by us
1 billion licenses issued for device management
Nearly 100% of toll-free calls in North America are handled by a converged application server
68% market share on dynamic discount solution
2 Billion users are served by Ericsson Charging and Billing Solutions
1.3 Billion users for commercial activation installations
Today over 600 operators use OSS solutions from Ericsson