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Archive for November 2016

Technology is winning its everyday challenges at a pace faster than ever before. As compared to the previous year, tech trends have become embedded to practically every sphere of digital business. There is constant growth of software spending on technologies because technology is now rooted in every sphere of digital business. For entrepreneurs and self-starters it is necessary to leverage strategic technologies to reach target audiences next year.
 

What is to become mainstream in 2017?

AI & Advanced Machine Learning

Artificial intelligence (AI) and advanced machine learning (ML) are represented by many technologies and techniques such as deep learning, neural networks, natural-language processing. They have a potential to create more advanced systems that are able to adapt. Such systems will be able to change future behavior, leading to the creation of more intelligent devices and programs. But the trend is to develop ML and AI to autonomously operated systems in long-term perspective. These techniques are likely to be introduced into almost every sphere of digital business as inborn components within a decade.

Virtual & Augmented Reality

The world is now ready for augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) technology while early-stage devices are springing up in different spheres. Much work is done to transform interaction of human beings to the next level by moving them to immerse environment with the help of VR. It allows undergoing training in remote places or creating certain scenarios under pre-established criteria. As for AR, it can blend the real and virtual worlds, which has great potential for application in lots of businesses. It is estimated by market researchers that worldwide revenues for the AR/VR market will grow from $5.2 billion in 2016 to more than $162 billion in 2020. That is why many observers claim that the year 2017 to be a starting point (or at least a transition period) of AR/VR versions of practically every application to emerge.

Intelligent Things

Robots, drones and vehicles-these intelligent things have spread tremendously through the current year. But what potential do they have for the coming year? It is predicted by Gartner agency and other research firms that the apps that control IoT devices will also use machine learning and AI. This means that all the ordinary elements of environment, from toothbrush to your car, may become interconnected and collaborate to make decisions in everyday practice. Major advancements are yet to come. Experts claim that solutions to tie every app which controls intelligent things together into a single, seamless user experience are to be made in the year 2017.
 

Digital Twins

Next year is predicted to be the time when digital twin’s idea will spread to most remote parts of the world. It is a software replica of a physical thing or system which uses sensor and physics data. The sphere of application of a digital twin will widen with the time and by the year 2020 they will likely to be used for improving operations and creating new things.

Conversational systems

Intelligent objects are predicted to have some form of conversational interface in the near future. And the coming year, in particular, is likely to produce a device mesh when there will be a merge of different interaction techniques resulting in innovative digital user experience. It is now represented by a trend in app development which lets users interact with apps through texting. The next year is likely to provide such solutions to other intelligent objects which surround us in everyday life.

Mesh App and Service Architecture

MASA- or “Mesh App and Service Architecture” is considered to be an IT-system which enables communication, collaboration and learning within some digital ecosystem. Such architecture will hold together and interconnect different services to enable users gain experience through shifting across different sections (e.g., desktop, smartphone, vehicles).

Adaptive Security Architecture

There is much room for new smart devices for better learning and protecting. It is especially necessary in the vulnerable system of IoT which can be brought down by DDoS attacks. The idea behind adaptive security architecture lies in recruiting AI smart solutions within security tools. IoT is now becoming a special frontier for security specialists. Will 2017 become a year when new remediation tools and processes will be embedded into IoT intelligent devices? The answer is to be given soon.

These are some of major tech trends we’re in store for in 2017. They seem strategic and have lots of potential to grow to autonomous systems, like in case with AI and advanced machine learning. Some of the abovementioned trends are likely to take off next year; others will boost their presence in the digital business in several years. But even ordinary people will soon be able to experience the world where boundaries between real and digital blur.

What’s your idea of the tech trends for 2017? Please feel free to share your thought in the comments below.

 

Yuliya Tolkach

Yuliya Tolkach

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altabel

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The history of filmmaking can be traced back to as early as the 17th century, where magic lanterns were used. Back then, films were all made in shades of black and white only. Also, many of the times, special effects are done manually by workers.

As time progressed, technology improved the quality of films largely, thus producing colored films. However, such improvements do not halt there. Movie makers and producers worked endlessly to create films that leave people in awe. Therefore, the creations of computer-generated imagery, animation and 3D have been invented and improved. Such creations have moved the movie industry one step forward.
 

But now we can observe that the development of modern technology has also allowed producing games that are not inferior to high-budget projects in the movie. According to recent research the market of computer games have outgrown the motion picture industry. West countries were the first whose major entertainment companies have long invested in the development and promotion of games, as well as in movies and TV shows.

Industry and technical components also influenced on the active development of the game. I mean the popularity of mobile devices, which allows you to run games in good quality. The user of such device is more likely to spend free time playing than go to the cinema. What is more the availability of mobile Internet has given the opportunity to play in popular network games and now it has become so popular that even has grown to the size of a single universe. Users spend real money not only to pay for Internet or account in the game, but also for the purchase of virtual items that give them a number of advantages in the game. As a result the amount of money involved in the game world, exceeded box office results of all movies in the cinemas.

Many experts consider that today “lazy” users bring most of the profits to the games. The availability of media products has led to the fact that the consumer is looking for a content that will satisfy his needs in entertainment and communication with people. And as we can see modern games have all these qualities, that’s why they are becoming so popular.

What more psychologists think is that movies do not give such interactivity as it is offered by games. That is why while watching the film people are only able to imagine yourself as a magician or superhero, but in the game they have a unique opportunity to transform, to control their speech and actions.
 

But it’s not so simple as it may seem, as a mass product not always has a high quality, it is more often designed for consumption. As a result new solutions in design or gaming technology are becoming smaller, it leads to mass copying, so in most of the games we can see that only the main characters are changed.

Scientists from the UK tried to find out the average age of players. It turned out that experienced computer gamers are not only teenagers. The statistical average player is an adult, a married man of 35- year old (man and woman). The most common group of people playing online games is office workers – they spend about 12 hours a week on playing.

These results may be useful for producers of video games as an existing stereotype is completely wrong, producing a video game, you must orient on a completely different consumer. Video games don’t have to be something reserved only for children and young people. It’s a big business which must be refocused and produce more games for adults than for minors.

In conclusion we can say that the gaming industry will only grow. Users can choose the platform that suits them. Most of their free time will be spent on playing or “pumping” the character of online games. And as a result the movies will never gain the popularity that they had before.

 

Kate Kviatkovskaya

Kate Kviatkovskaya

Business Development Manager

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altabel

Altabel Group

Professional Software Development

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www.altabel.com

Recently Immo Landwerth post about .NET Standard 2.0 appeared in the web. Briefly, it is the unification of three major.NET Framework branches: .NET Framework, .NET Core and Xamarin. Simply saying, it is an API set which will be implemented by all platforms. This will join up the .NET platforms and stave off future fragmentation. This means that developers don’t need to master three different base class libraries to write code that runs across all of them. As long as industry is rapidly changing new .NET features will be designed by Microsoft or someone else.

A significant change is that .NET Standard will replace Portable Class Libraries (PCLs) in order to build multi-platform .NET libraries. Although the gist will be the same for developers, but implementation will be different.

The .NET Standard will include two types of APIs, the ones which are absolutely necessary to be implemented by all platforms, and optional APIs, which are not obligatory to be implemented. The last will be available as individual NuGet packages.

The APIs that can not be implemented on all platforms can be divided into two groups: specific APIs for each runtime and specific APIs for each OS. There are three ways to deal with unrealizable API. The first one is to make API unavailable. Secondly, you can make API available, but throw PlatformNotSupportedException on the platforms where there is no implementation. And also you can simulate API (as Mono does, partially simulating the registry as .ini files).

.NET Standard uses all of these variations and their combination, depending on the situation. Technologies that are available only on certain platforms will be implemented as NuGet packages. If it is unreal to make a stand-alone package, then there are options: throw an exception or simulate API.

There are many versions of .NET Standard, which are compatible with different platforms:
 

In this table the arrows are showing the platform ability to support a higher version of .NET Standard. For example, .NET Core 1.0 supports the .NET Standard version 1.6, which is the reason why arrows point to the right for the lower versions 1.0 – 1.5.

As you can see, the 4.6.1 framework version meets twice. With this version exactly .NET Standard 2.0 will be compatible, as well as future versions of Xamarin and .NET Core. There was a roll back of changes that were included in versions 1.5 and 1.6. This was done in order to support backward compatibility. Newer versions of .NET Standard should contain previous and new features. During the analysis of NuGet.org only 6 packages with .NET Standard 1.5/1.6 target platform were found, the author of which is not Microsoft, so it was decided to take 4.6.1 as a basis, and to offer the authors of these 6-packs to update them.

PCL is replaced by .NET Standard, but you are still able to work with it. You can make a reference from one .NET Standard library to another, or to PCL library.

Graphically, this looks as follows:

 

 

In addition, it is possible to make a reference to a conventional .NET library using the compatibility shim.

 

 

But it will only work in case all APIs in this .NET library are supported by .NET Standard. In this case it will be much easier to apply the references to existing libraries.

The following image shows the main APIs of .NET Standard 2.0

 

 
Opportunities which are likely to appear in .NET Core are quite predictable as long as this brunch has less possibilities than others.
As for Xamarin, many of these APIs have been included in the release of Cycle 8 / Mono 4.6.0

Source: .Net Blog.

What do you think about these new features? Please feel free to share your thoughts with us. Thank you in advance!

 

Darya Bertosh

Darya Bertosh

Business Development Manager

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altabel

Altabel Group

Professional Software Development

E-mail: contact@altabel.com
www.altabel.com


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