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IT Development

Google showed tools for education in Philadelphia

Google is present at the event of the International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE), which takes place in Philadelphia, USA.

ISTE is a global community of educators who believe in the power of technology to transform learning. The event in Philadelphia is the largest in this organization. Thousands of educators will gather in the North American city to share their experiences in the use of technology to improve education.

In this event, Google presented applications and integrations developed to improve learning and make it more accessible for students. These tools seek to improve diverse student skills, in addition to meeting special needs, according to Rachel Cai, director of the Google for Education business development program.

The tools presented by Google are available in G Suite and the Chromebook. Each app has been improved thanks to the feedback of the students and teachers who use them. Among the objectives of these applications is to make learning more inclusive, according to Rachel Cai.

  • Capti Voice: This app was designed for students with vision loss, dyslexia, ADD, or motor problems. This application reads books and web pages to students, in addition to translating passages and words from more than 100 languages.
  • Crick Software: One of the first applications of augmented and alternative communication. Crick software helps students who have speech or writing problems with fragments of words that help them create sentences.
  • Scanning pens: A scan pen called ReaderPen reads aloud to students who need extra reading support. Students scan directly to a Google Doc, in addition to uploading the audios to a Chromebook or Android.

“We are also working on an app focused on cultivating a personalized learning environment, improving organization and optimizing tasks,” said Rachel Chai, introducing some partners that expand the functions of G Suite, Google Classroom and Chromebook, features on the Chromebook. Hub App

  • Seesaw: It is an application with creative tools optimized for students with Chromebooks. Students can select files, write them down and cure them, and share them with teachers so that they can verify their learning.
  • Backpack for Google Drive by Amplified Labs: Students can heal and save digital materials for learning.
  • Kahoot! allows you to create, share, and play educational games or riddles in minutes. One of the attractive features of Kahoot! is the ease of registering and joining Google Classroom, so that teachers can easily share challenges with their students.

These tools are part of the Google for Education Technology Partner Program. This program gives developers access to technical support, marketing, and branding, as well as being able to participate in Google initiatives such as credits for cloud services for start-up or scholarships for developers.

For developers who have a product that can be integrated into Google for Education, you can see the options that the program has, while people searching for applications to improve the classroom experience can join the App Hub community.

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IT Development

Hackathon in Creative Digital City of Guadalajara

On June 28 and 29 Talent Network will organize a hackathon in the Creative Digital City, in the downtown area of Guadalajara.

The hackathon aims to reactivate the downtown of the city while promoting innovation and retaking the facilities of the abandoned Creative City.

In April, the government of Jalisco announced in the Talent Land that it would continue the Digital Creative City project, which began at the end of Felipe Calderón’s administration (2012) to turn Guadalajara into a global tech-hub.

The Creative Digital City, located around the Morelos Park, sought to recover an area where poverty and prostitution increase to become a center where creative agencies were in contact with the digital industry to promote cooperation, networking, and innovation.

Currently, the complex is far from meeting this expectation. The Secretary of Innovation, Science and Technology of Jalisco, Alfonso Pompa Padilla, previously commented to El Informador that the Digital Creative City does not have finished buildings and does not have the ideal structure to function as planned.

The government of Enrique Alfaro undertook to correct the mistakes of the project and revive it. This hackathon is the first step to achieve this goal and will be the first of two more to be carried out in August and September.

Coding to improve mobility and turism in Guadalajara

On this occasion, there will be two tracks for the hackathon: mobility and tourism.

The transport of Jalisco has been a pending problem for several administrations. In 2012, the government did not know how many transportation routes existed in the state. The government of Aristóteles Sandoval made commitments to improve the service with the incorporation of new units and automatic payments, but for some specialists such as the researcher of the Research Center for Environment and Territorial Planning of UdeG, Adriana Olivares González, the government threw the towel.

On the “Mi Movilidad” (My Mobility) track, participants should look for solutions to improve city traffic and the safety of transportation.

In terms of tourism, Guadalajara has been left behind in part due to the lack of a broad cultural offer and remodeling works in areas such as the Paseo Alcalde.

In the track “Revive el corazón de la Ciudad” (Relive the heart of the city), the participants will create applications to promote the cultural and tourist offers of the center of Guadalajara to reactivate tourism in the area.

The hackathon expects the participation of more than 500 young people who will form teams of two to five people. Each side will have the mentoring of specialists and officials from each branch. For each track, the prize will be 25 thousand pesos. The registration to the event is from the Talent Network page.

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IT Development

What is a DDoS attack? Telegram explained it with an army of lemmings

Telegram, an instant messaging service, warned its users about possible connection issues this morning due to a “powerful DDoS attack,” but assured that personal data are safe.

Telegram gave the warning from its Twitter account and took advantage of the situation to explain in a very particular way what is a DDoS attack.

In a thread of six tweets, the company explained that a DDoS is a “Distributed Denial of Service Attack,” where servers receive “GADZILLONS of garbage requests” that prevent them from processing legitimate requests.

Telegram compared DDoS attacks as if “an army of lemmings just jumped the queue at McDonald’s in front of you – and each is ordering a whopper.” A whopper is a hamburger prepared by the McDonald’s competition, Burger King.

“The server is busy telling the whopper lemmings they came to the wrong place – but there are so many of them that the server can’t even see you to try and take your order,” said Telegram.

Lemmings use to move in large groups.

In a next tweet, Telegram explained that to generate these garbage requests, “bad guys use “botnets” made up of computers of unsuspecting users which were infected with malware at some point in the past. This makes a DDoS similar to the zombie apocalypse: one of the whopper lemmings might be your grandpa” the company said with humor.

Telegram assured its users that their data is safe. “All of these lemmings are there just to overload the servers with extra work – they can’t take away your BigMac and coke.”

Telegram is the third most used instant messaging application in Brazil, after WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger. In recent years it has lost ground in several countries and is no longer a leader in any, according to SimilarWeb.

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IT Development

Google Launchpad AI Buenos Aires

Know the acceleration program for local startups created by Google for Latin America. In this program, Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning play a crucial role to find innovative solutions.

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IT Development

Animation and video games: Two serious careers in Guadalajara

More than 600 companies dedicated to software development have chosen Guadalajara as its headquarters. A significant number of these companies are focused on the development of video games and animation, two industries with accelerated growth and in which Mexico has stood out.

In 2018, the videogame industry reported $43.8B in revenue worldwide, according to data from the Entertainment Software Association and the NPD Group. In the same year, the animation industry obtained $259B in revenue, according to the report Global Animation, VFX & Games Industry: Strategies, Trends & Opportunities, 2019.

Mako is an animation studio in Guadalajara.

In Mexico, the video game industry represented an economic spill of one billion dollars in 2017, placing this country as the Latin American leader in the industry, surpassing Brazil by more than 90 million dollars. The animation industry is still developing but reports an annual growth of 18%.
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To sustain this growth, it is not enough with economic incentives or infrastructure facilities for companies, but it is also required to develop human talent that can compete internationally.

Schools of animation and video games in Jalisco

Until a few years ago, there was no educational offer in Mexico focused on videogames or animation, especially in Jalisco. Many of the companies had to invest in the training of personnel that later left the company to receive better job offers abroad. At present, this situation has changed. Several schools consider these industries within their curriculum.

In Guadalajara, the offer is increasingly, and even there are specialized educational centers in these areas, such as the Digital Arts University, the Amerike University or the University of Advanced Technologies. These schools offer specialized degrees in both videogame development and animation. Other private schools have incorporated subjects for the development of videogames into their curricular map, while others, such as the Universidad Panamericana, offer undergraduate studies in these areas. In the public universities, the University of Guadalajara has a diploma for the creation of 3D characters, animation, and special effects, as well as a Bachelor degree in Video Games in its campus of the Coast.

Larva Games is one of the first Video Games companies in Jalisco

Guadalajara’s schools usually have agreements with animation studios in the city. Amerike University, for example, has 18 deals with animation studios and 14 with video game developers and belongs to the Jalisco Association of Creative Industries.

The Jalisco Association of Creative Industries feeds this expanding ecosystem. This association, presented at the Guadalajara International Film Festival in 2016, aims to “turn creative industries into one of the strategic industrial, economic and cultural sectors of the country to generate wealth.”

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IT Development

The GDP would increase a point if LatAm invests in AI

Investment in AI in Latin America would bring improvements to productivity, which would allow workers to focus on areas that bring more value.

The president of the Inter-American Development Bank (IADB) Luis Alberto Moreno indicated that the investment in Artificial Intelligence (AI) could facilitate trade negotiations and accelerate the economic growth of the region.

The IADB official was at the inauguration of the 11th International Forum for Latin America and the Caribbean, organized by the IADB and the OECD in Paris, France. In the event, Luis Alberto Moreno spoke of the importance of smartphones in the region, since they have favored financial inclusion for the population.

On AI, Moreno described the technology as “a unique hybrid of capital and labor that creates a completely novel productive force.” Half of the estimated growth that the AI can bring is due to improvements in productivity.

Without a strategy, AI could increase income gap

In Latin America, there are several initiatives to develop AI-based technology. In Chile, 7 out of 10 companies plan to invest in this sector. However, the region is still behind in this area. The OECD as a whole directs 2.4% of GDP to the industry, while in Latin America, investment is only 0.7%.

The president of the IADB also regretted that until now, technological progress in Latin America has only increased the income gap and inequality in the region.

“We have already lost the train of the Industrial Revolution once. We can not miss this train of the Technological Revolution, “he said.

One way to modify this situation, suggested in the forum, is to seek links with the universities so that they allow the transfer of technology. In the continent, there are several initiatives to achieve this goal.

For Moreno, the incorporation of new technologies in the productivity of the continent will deepen the value chains, since they can analyze the flow of data obtained through the commercial exchange, tariff positions, technical standards, among other sources.

However, if governments do not take the necessary measures to improve education in technology and create strategies to take advantage of this technology in a fair manner, AI could widen inequality gaps.

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IT Development

New technologies used for art

Technology is related to art from its etymology. “Art,” in Greek, is “tekné” (τέχνη). The artist’s development is linked to his mastery of a technique. Therefore, it is not strange that the development of new technologies opens new paths for art.

Damien Henry, director of the technical program at Google Arts & Culture, says that “for centuries, creative people have turned tools into art, or create inventions that can transform the way we think about the world around us.”

To explore the intersection between technology and art, a group of artists created in collaboration with Google Arts & Culture two experiments presented at Google I/O 2019.

One of them is the one made by the artists Molmol Kuo & Zach Lieberman. They developed Weird Cuts, which allows creating collages with augmented reality. One can select a cutout displayed on the camera to take a picture with a particular shape.

WeirdCuts

Another experiment is Infinite Patterns, created by the artists Pinar & Viola, with the collaboration of Google engineer Alexander Mordvintsev. Alexander Mordvintsev had already explored the intersections of art and technology with DeepDream, the algorithm that creates images with Artificial Intelligence. Infinite Patterns uses the DeepDream algorithm to transform a picture with a unique pattern. Pinar & Viola consider this a way to find inspiration for new designs in fashion.

Both experiments were created in the Google Arts & Cultures lab, where programmers and artists are invited to explore how they can inspire their creativity with technology.

To continue with this field, Google announced the Artists + Machine Intelligence grants to explore creative applications of machine learning. The program offers artists in engineering mentoring, access to Google’s research, and funds for their project.

Infinite Patterns
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Fintech IT Development

Send money through an Instant Message

Mexican bank Banorte already allows its clients to send money to their contacts from text messages on WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, SMS or any other social network, the bank’s corporate reported.

The function is called Banorte Go and is available to all Banorte customers who have the Banorte Móvil application on their cell phone.

With Banorte Go, Banorte customers can choose any of their contacts and transfer them up to 8K pesos in a day, without the need to contact the bank’s customer.

The transaction is carried out without the need of any bank key or any other banking data, thus ensuring that the bank’s customers keep their bank information protected.

This transfer option works through the Banorte Keyboard. On the keyboard, you can see the Banorte logo which, when clicked on, displays the bank transfer options.

The amounts that can be sent from this option range from 100 to 8K Mexican pesos per day.

The new functionality only works with the Android system, which is used by 80% of Banorte’s customers. For the next quarter of the year, it is estimated that the function of the iOS system is ready.

Banorte, a second chance

Sending payments through social networks is not a new attempt by Banorte. In 2017, this bank launched Peper, an application that allowed sending and receiving balance through social networks. The way of employment was different from Banorte Go. With Peper, users needed to download an app that was linked to the Facebook account and WhatsApp to make the shipments.

In March of this year, WhatsApp also reported that it would launch a payment platform from its application, which would be available in its trial version in several countries, including Mexico.

It will probably still take some years to know if the use of social networks as channels for online payments will become popular in the coming years. If this is the case, we will see a new trend in e-commerce, where instant messaging will no longer be just a channel to communicate with the customer, but will also be consolidated as a sales channel.

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IT Development

eMerge Americas 2019 started in Miami

The eMerge Americas 2019 forum began today in Miami with the official announcement of a $5b venture capital fund focused on technology projects in Latin America. Investors commented on this news in recent months.

Gorordo emphasized that this investment is achieved thanks to a Latino, the Bolivian-American Marcelo Claure, chief operating officer of SoftBank, which “recognizes the tremendous opportunity it means for the entire Latin American world.”

This injection of capital will increase investment in Latin America, which was between $1,5b and $2b in 2018.

Softbank sees great opportunity in LatAm.

The required investment for a developing area

“Latin America has been hungry for capital,” said Paulo Passoni, an investment partner of Softbank Group International, who praised the “super high quality.”

Passoni was convinced that the region represents a “great opportunity to help companies develop.”

The “big cities” will be the priority of the investment because they are “prosperous, giant economies, where you can scale very quickly to help companies.”

As for the sectors to which this multimillion-dollar fund is directed, he pointed out that they will be those “that solve the problems for the average citizen: mobility, education, health, things in which the State often fails.”

Passoni mentioned as attractive countries for investment Mexico, Colombia, Argentina, Chile, Peru, and especially Brazil.

The Chilean president, Sebastián Piñera, also spoke at the opening of the forum. He spoke to the audience at the conference through a video from the Chinese wall.

Piñera, the first president to address this conference in its six editions, urged the region to “make a difference” and entrepreneurs pursue their “dreams.”

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IT Development

Fans like this: Facebook and Fox Sports team up

Facebook Watch will now broadcast 46 CONMEBOL matches for free in the countries participating in the tournament.

The decision was announced on April 8. Facebook and Fox Sports reached an agreement to share games. The CONMEBOL will be the primary beneficiary because more people will be able to see the games.

Facebook bought the transmission rights of the tournament at the end of last year. In the previous months, Facebook began to discuss with CONMEBOL the possibility of sharing the content in the 2019 season, an initiative that until now has materialized.

Facebook and Fox Sports will exchange games with the new agreement. With this, the free matches on Facebook Watch went from 28 to 46. Fox Sports, on the other hand, will also broadcast all Thursday matches acquired by Facebook.

The CONMEBOL Libertadores games on Facebook will now be available on the CONMEBOL Libertadores Page, and on the Fox Sports Page, from Tuesday to Thursday, starting tomorrow, April 9, in Argentina, Bolivia, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, Paraguay, Peru, Uruguay, and Venezuela.

A different LatAm consumer

“Consumer behavior is changing, and we want to help bring that change and that innovation to the sports ecosystem in Latin America. Our experience has shown us that adding more matches can facilitate a better adoption of the change. We are excited to expand our collaboration with Fox Sports, giving people more opportunities to watch Libertadores matches through a new social viewing experience on Facebook Watch, “said Leonardo Lenz, director of Sports Alliances for Facebook for Latin America.

“We continue to look for new ways to serve the public throughout the region, and we are delighted to have the opportunity to reach and attract our viewers with content spread across multiple platforms, so they can experience the excitement of the CONMEBOL Libertadores wherever and whenever they prefer,” said Hernán Donnari, vice president of Fox Sports Cono Sur.

“We are very pleased with this new partnership to continue carrying a football everywhere. We value the efforts of our rights holders to create new experiences for all the CONMEBOL Libertadores fans, “said Juan Emilio Roa, Commercial Director of CONMEBOL.

Facebook owns the transmission rights of the CONMEBOL Libertadores until 2022, including the exclusivity of the matches on Thursdays. The platform has a global community of more than 400 million soccer fans.