• A quick look at Cameras

    It’s been a while since we wrote about cameras here on GirlyGeekdom so we thought it would be interesting to see what my favourite brand of camera manufacturers Sony have been up to recently.  I must say, I miss my Sony Cybershot camera even though my phone has a higher spec camera in it than my Cybershot had.  There is just something about having a camera as just a camera without any distractions or complications that is just sensible and practical in my opinion.  With that in mind I thought it might be fun to take a look at the latest compact system camera range for cameras by Sony.

    Having looked at the broader range of cameras on offer to me this particular range are practical and professional yet not so big that you need a giant bag just for the camera.  They are the middle ground between a phone camera and the fancy DSLR’s that are out there and when you start looking at the price of them they aren’t too bad for an entry level professional camera. (£375 – £999)  The interchangeable lenses and the form factor look like a really good option for someone like me who doesn’t like carrying around loads of equipment.  Overall the compact system camera range from Sony looks like a really interesting option if you are looking for something that is reliable and flexible.  It would be interesting for us to get our hands on one of these to see if they live up to my initial expectations!

    And on that note I’ll leave you with this infographic from the Sony site!


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  • Innovative Cyber Security Solutions showcasing at Titanic Belfast

    ICT KTN and the Centre for Secure Information Technologies at Queen’s University Belfast have teamed up to bring you this opportunity to see great cyber security solutions and the latest research in a lovely setting – the new Titanic Belfast.

    Attendance is free but places are limited. Information and registration here:


  • North West Tech Companies – Where’s the money?

    There are literally billions of pounds of money available to help innovative companies expand what they do. Could you use some of this?

    On July 8th 2013, at the Liverpool Innovation Centre, a free event will be laid on giving advice on at the many sources of funding available to support R&D work.

    This half-day event will feature:
    - a live internet link with an ICT Lead Technologist from the Technology Strategy Board
    - Eddie Townsend from the  ICT Knowledge Transfer Network  talking about the opportunities in Horizon 2020 (the next round of research and development funding from the European Union); and
    - a Knowledge Transfer Partnership advisor presenting the benefits of a KTP investment.

    If you would like to see how your company can benefit from the support available please register for this event at: http://liverpoolsmes.eventbrite.co.uk/

  • Getting the most out of Windows 8 Features – Refresh and Reset

    So far in this series of ‘getting the most out of Windows 8 features‘ we’ve covered Family Safety and File History. AKA protect your kids on the web and prevention of data loss. In today’s post we look at Refresh and Reset, for the lovers of speed and hoarders of desktop applications amongst you, this Windows 8 feature is going to be right up your alley.

    A question of speed

    Modern society loves speed, nowhere can this be optimised more than when it comes to technology. Speed is the message of the day with advertising campaigns such as “Superfast” 4G mobile networks from EE and “High Speed” Fibre Optic broadband from Virgin Media. Load speeds now a days are judged in milliseconds, a concept backed in a recent study release by Google highlighting that for every 500 millisecond delay time resulting in a 20% loss of traffic. I remember the days when connecting to the internet was a 5 minute process and the concept of YouTube was about as close as light-speed space travel.

    So when it comes to desktop PC’s speed is just as much a factor as with any other facet of technology, opening a program and watching the egg time spin for 5 seconds is simply not an option for most. That said, we continue to fill our computers with once used and long forgotten applications and files (I still have my A-Level Geography project on deforestation and it’s effects on soil erosion), which in turn can drastically affect PC performance. In the past the only option available was the trick and time consuming process of  wiping the hard-drive and re-installing the operating system. That is of course if you could find the original disk and associated access key.

    Windows 8 makes this process obsolete…

    No more re-installations

    So when your hard drive  is packed to bursting point and your PC performance is beginning to suffer, you now have a quick, easy and viable alternative in the form of Refresh and Reset, the functions of each I have outlined below:

    Refresh – the less extreme of the two options, Refresh removes your installed applications and resets PC settings to default whilst maintaining all your files and folders and paid applications from the Windows store, no losing that premium version of Fruit Ninja.

    Reset – much closer to the reinstall, reset clears all your programs, app purchases and files returning the OS to it’s starting glory with PC Settings returned to default.

    We know what it is, let’s learn how to use it.

    So now we know what Refresh and Reset is, lets go through the How-to guide below which has been created in the form of an infographic. This is pretty much because I like pretty colours and design. The content is taken from a guide written by our in -house Windows 8 expert , Gary Fildes.

    So there we have it, no more re-installs. Join us for next weeks instalment where we look at ‘Ease of Access’ in Windows 8.


  • Have you put anyone forward for IET Young Woman Engineer of the Year Award?

    The deadline for entries for the IET Young Woman Engineer of the Year Award is fast approaching and I would strongly encourage all companies and individuals with shining stars within their companies to put someone forward and showcase their talents!  Here’s some information about the awards and the deadlines.  Let’s showcase some of our young talented females and start to put forward the role models of the future!

    IET Young Woman Engineer of the Year (YWE) Award
    Entry deadline 31 July 2013
    Prize:  £2,500, trophy and IET Ambassador role

    This prestigious award honours the very best female engineers working in the UK today, highlighting the achievements of women in engineering and encouraging others to enter the profession.

    Mary George Memorial Prize for Apprentices
    Entry deadline 31 July 2013
    Prize:  £750, trophy and IET Ambassador role

    This prestigious award is for an outstanding female engineering apprentice who has made a contribution within the workplace beyond the realms of her normal duties and demonstrated dynamism in her approach to the solutions of engineering problems. All entrants to the Mary George Memorial Prize for Apprentices will be automatically entered for the Young Woman Engineer of the Year Award.

    Women’s Engineering Society (WES) Prize
    Entry deadline 31 July 2013
    Prize:  £750, trophy and IET Ambassador role

    The Women’s Engineering Society Prize is awarded to a young female engineer who is able to engage and inspire young people’s involvement in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM). All entrants to the Women’s Engineering Society Prize will be automatically entered for the Young Woman Engineer of the Year Award.

    All winners will be announced at a national ceremony in London on 5th December 2013. Please visit our website for more details and to apply: www.theiet.org/ywe.

  • How do smartphones enhance your life?

    If you are anything like me then you'll be wondering how you ever managed without a smart phone…. However some people, my dad included still only use basic feature phones. So if you aren't a smartphone user what are you missing out on?

    In my case I use my smartphone to know what I am doing when and with whom. It is my camera, my mp3 player and video player all at the same time. When I get lost it becomes my satnav and when I have something I really want to share it becomes my main comms device of choice. I edit documents, I create content and I share some of those key moments that you could only ever capture if you had a device with you that could do all those things.

    Recently Carphone Warehouse launched a campaign to showcase how other people use their smartphones for much less trivial uses than me. In fact they have shared the amazing story of Simon Wheatcraft which you can watch in the video below. They are inviting people like you and I to share our stories on their website to inspire and learn from one another.

    Here's a little more information Simon Wheatcroft who features in the video above:

    Simon Wheatcroft is an ultra-marathon runner who uses the latest smartphone technology and apps in order to overcome his diagnosis of Retinitis Pigmentosa, a degenerative eye condition. Simon began losing his sight to this disease at the age of 13, and was classified blind when he turned 17.

    Simon is working with Carphone Warehouse on their Smarter World initiative, celebrating the great and interesting things that people do with their smartphones, encouraging others to share their stories online.

    Shortly before joining University, Simon decided that he wouldn’t allow his disability to get in the way of his love of running, and started training near his house, in an area that he memorised in his head.

    Using a normal iPhone and existing fitness apps, such as RunKeeper, Simon was able to utilise audio to keep track of how far he was running, his heart rate, and his average pace, alongside his location using GPS, allowing him to keep track of his route without the need for a guide dog or running companion.

    Constantly looking for new challenges, Simon is taking part in ultra-marathons including the Grim Reaper (a 40 mile race), and has ambitions for the New York Marathon in 2014. But his biggest aim is to race the fabled Ocean Floor race – 160 miles through one of the harshest environments in the world, the Sahara Desert.

    Simon is passionate about his ultra-marathon running, and wants to raise awareness of the opportunities that smartphones can give to those who suffer from his condition.

    ,p>To find out more about the wonderful things we can do with our smartphones or share your own story visit www.carphonewarehouse.com/smarterworld.


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  • Just How Smart the future of television is…

    If you’ve spent any time recently in the electronics department in any department store in the US or UK then you have probably noticed that TV’s are getting much more intelligent and feature rich.  These fancy internet enabled Smart TV‘s are fast becoming the norm and technology is moving on faster than ever before in the TV market.

    There are some really interesting stats that show just how fast things are moving in this space with television viewers in their millions.

    Smart TV

    So what does the future of TV really look like…. well today Smart TV‘s like the Sony range feature a wide range of various technologies from built in internet connections to full HD and 3D capabilities.  The latest 4K Ultra HD technlogy is also a pretty awesome experience and show off an interestin future for the home cinema and videogame experience.

    TV’s these days aren’t just about the screen quality but also about what else you can do with them and what peripherals like phones and tablets you can connect to them with.  Check out the latest Smart TV applications that are coming out from the likes of Sony!  With NFC technology and the ability to turn your phone into more than just a phone you can now control and interact with your TV via such devices.  This sort of technology combination really puts the smart into Smart TV.

    Why let your smart TV experience end there.  You can bring what you are watching directly from the TV to your devices through the use of apps such as TV sideview and find out additional information that just isn’t shown on the TV like who the cast are or information on the episode.

    But where do we go from here… well let your imagination run wild… Can you imagine your TV being connected to your diary to live stream your favourite programmes to you whilst you are on the train or automatically download these programmes to your phone to watch when you are in an internet free zone.  Who needs USB or cables to do data transfers at home.  Why not use your TV as your home data hub…

    What would be your dream Smart TV and what would it do?
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