How to take great photos—even on your cell phone

TED Blog

8photography_tips

Taking great photos isn’t just about having a nice camera. I’m a firm believer that good photography comes from smart photographers who think creatively and know how to make the most of what they’ve got—whether they’re working with fancy DSLR or an iPhone.

On TED’s design team, where I manage TED’s Instagram account, we’re always on the lookout for beautiful, arresting images. Below are 8 non-technical, non-intimidating tips that I continue to refer to even after years of taking pictures.

  1. Keep your lens clean and your battery charged. Yes, both of these things are obvious, but they’re also very easy to forget. With my camera, I like to keep at least one extra fully-charged battery on hand, and I always keep my phone charger with me because it’s such a bummer when you want to take a photo but can’t. Phones can get especially dirty from riding around in…

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Xiaomi Redmi 1S goes out of stock in 4.2 seconds!

Your Tech Dose!

Xiaomi, the company that was making noise in India for the launch of its Mi 3, is now receiving higher fame with the launch of its Redmi 1S phone, a smartphone designed to compete with the Moto E, Micromax Unite 2 and others.

The Redmi 1S is from the house of Xiaomi. The Redmi 1S is from the house of Xiaomi.

Flipkart is the exclusive partner for selling Xiaomi phones in India. Flipkart is the exclusive partner for selling Xiaomi phones in India.

The phone was released for selected Flipkart First customers yesterday, a day before the general public launch. Today, about 40,000 pieces of the device was put on sale on Flipkart at 2 PM, and the whole batch sold out in 4.2 seconds! The phone is better received by the public, who are saying that they were able to purchase the device, unlike the Mi 3 on which many complaints from consumers were received saying that they weren’t able to purchase the device even on many of the flash sales.

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This Is The Face Tracking Tech Powering Amazon’s New 3D Smartphone

TechCrunch

okao-amazon1Rumor has it – and we’ve confirmed – that Amazon will launch its first smartphone on June 18. The device will be unique in the marketplace thanks to its ability to deliver 3D effects courtesy of four front-mounted IR cameras. What wasn’t known is how Amazon planned to scan our faces to handle the UI elements. TechCrunch has learned that Amazon is using Omron’s Okao Vision face sensing technology to track the user’s head. The Japanese firm’s technology was modified by an internal team at Amazon to allow its upcoming phone to deliver unique stereoscopic effects from a standard LCD screen.

For example, as I previously reported, a user can tilt the smartphone or their head left or right to browse and access hidden side panels. Watch the video (below) Amazon released along with the invitation to its launch event. Our source tells us that sort of motion is…

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Google X Built A Fully Self-Driving Car From Scratch, Sans Steering Wheel And Pedals

TechCrunch

Google’s experimental Google X division has been working on self-driving cars for a while, but it’s created the prototype for a brand new version that looks nothing like the retrofitted version.

“We took a look from the ground up of what a self-driving car would look like,” Brin said at the CODE Conference tonight, after showing a demo video.

What does a built-from-the-ground-up self-driving car look like? Well, you start by taking away all the things that allow you to actually drive the thing — you take away the steering wheel and pedals that give a driver control. Check out our gallery post for a dozen more photos of the cutesy vehicle.

Brin said the company has not had any crashes so far, but the company has also been testing it in pretty safe conditions. But for Google, the self-driving car is part of a bigger vision for re-envisioning…

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Uber CEO Would Replace Drivers With Self-Driving Cars

TIME

Once self-driving cars are everywhere, Uber thinks they’ll make up its entire fleet.

Speaking at Re/code’s Code conference, Uber CEO Travis Kalanick said he loves the idea of autonomous vehicles, like the one Google unveiled on Tuesday, and would happily replace his human drivers with a self-driving fleet.

“The reason Uber could be expensive is you’re paying for the other dude in the car,” Kalanick said, according to Business Insider. “When there is no other dude in the car, the cost of taking an Uber anywhere is cheaper. Even on a road trip.”

Kalanick’s comments come as Uber is engaged in a PR push over driver pay. Faced with mounting protests over workers’ wages, Uber recently said its drivers can make up to $90,000 annually, although that number doesn’t factor in costs associated with being a professional driver.

Kalanick also said that, over time, the cost of a…

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Google Announces Open Automotive Alliance To Drive Android Into Connected Cars

TechCrunch

Google is hoping to do it again with Android — and cars. The 2007 Open Handset Alliance helped drive Google’s mobile OS from new-kid-on-the-block to dominant force in smartphones. Today, the company has announced the Open Automotive Alliance (OAA) to attempt the same trick but for cars — persuading a small coterie of car makers and others to join it as founder members of the OAA.

As well as Mountain View itself, Audi, GM, Honda, Hyundai and NVIDIA have put their names to the OAA, which is described as “a global alliance of technology and auto industry leaders committed to bringing the Android platform to cars starting in 2014”. The OAA will be focused on establishing a common platform for Android integration with connected cars.

Google notes:

We’re working with our partners to enable better integration between cars and Android devices in order to create a safer, car optimized experience…

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Nokia XL Android Smartphone Now Available At Rs 11,350

MOBILE MASTER

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Within days of announcing the roll-out of Nokia XL in the IMEA region, Microsoft has started selling the phone in the Indian market. This 5-inch Android smartphone is now available at Infibeam and Nokia Shop, other e-retailers are expected to begin sales in the next couple of days.

The smartphone has been priced at INR 11,350 and is being sold in Black, White, Cyan, Orange, Green and Yellow colour options in the country.

Originally introduced along with Nokia X at MWC 2014, Nokia XL comes with 1GHz dual-core Qualcomm Snapdragon processor, 768MB of RAM, 5-inch WVGA display and 2000 mAh battery. The phone also packs 5MP rear camera, 2MP front camera, 4GB of internal storage and microSD card slot.

The phone is clearly not worth the price-tag and if you really want to grab the smartphone, wait for a few days, the price will most probably come down like it…

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