Security&Safety Things AppChallenge
The year 2020: a year of change, but also of new beginnings and innovations. Many things have changed already, and many more will likely change in the future. For us at TNG, the time spent in seclusion has been a valuable opportunity to reflect, but also to create something new!
The Security and Safety Things App Challenge 2020 provided the perfect setting to demonstrate our computer vision skills under time pressure. In just three months we managed to create two innovative apps – all the way from idea to development to availability in the marketplace. Not only that but both apps were actually awarded first prize in their categories: Visual Feedback won in the Retail and Commerce category and Dynamic Privacy Mask in the Smart Cities category!
This year we not only wave goodbye to handshakes, but also to unsanitary feedback buttons! As retail store managers told us, customer feedback given via physical, in-store feedback buttons has indeed decreased dramatically. We remedied this with our app Visual Feedback! Visual Feedback enables customers to give feedback with a simple hand gesture, e.g. a thumbs up or thumbs down (demo video). To make the process even more playful and engaging, emojis that correspond to the given feedback are then displayed in place of the customer's head. Giving feedback with Visual Feedback is not only contactless, but also fun!
Our second app is a bit more serious. Many of us feel uncomfortable when high-resolution security cameras record personal data. Of course this cannot be completely avoided (after all, cameras are there to record people!) but that does not mean that credit cards or PIN pads have to be filmed at the grocery store or that the screen of your laptop needs to be captured in the waiting area at the airport. In fact, GDPR even demands that the collection of personal data be limited to what is necessary ("data minimization"). With Dynamic Privacy Mask, the recording of personal data can now be minimized even further. Using a Neutral Network, our app masks object classes such as people, laptops, and keyboards (demo video) – and soon also PIN pads, credit cards, and mobile phones. Through our app we hope to raise the standard of data protection and privacy in the long term. After all, GDPR also states that operators of security cameras must adhere to the technological state of the art when it comes to protecting personal data (and, in particular, everyone's right to informational self-determination).
Want to learn more about our apps? Drop us a line at iot-apps(at)tngtech.com for more information and let us know what you think!
TNG is a Slack Services Partner
Now it's official: we are the first Slack Services Partner in the German speaking regions of Europe! We are excited to support customers in their integration challenges with tailored apps and slick integration solutions for the popular communication platform. We'll help you to embed Slack into your different systems and workflows - according to your needs. Agilely and sustainably.
Are you facing a complex challenge or are you looking for a specific solution? Get in touch! You can find details about our cooperation with Slack and contact information here.
Strategic corporate events in times of Corona - our summer retreat 2020
Continuous, strategic development is so important to us at TNG that we organize a strategy retreat once a year in summer. We do so with all of our colleagues, because we are proud of all of them and want to integrate their knowledge and skills in the best way possible. Accordingly, on this day we distribute strategic information and exchange innovative ideas, as well as reflect collectively on TNG within the framework of open space or bar camp sessions.
In addition to the lively discussions and diverse opportunities for socializing, our summer retreat has so far been shaped by summer sun, summit lights, whirlpool fun, and alpine hotel rooms. Because of Corona, however, it was not possible to repeat it in this form. But did we let that stop us?
Of course not! Without missing a beat, we virtualized our summer retreat 2020 and conducted it remotely - with great success.
If you would like to learn more about the concept and technical implementation, you can find two detailed articles (in German) on our first remote summer retreat on LinkedIn. We are looking forward to your comments, ideas and the exchange of experiences. Follow us on LinkedIn and stay tuned!
Hey oven, open up!
Talking to your household appliances sounds like Science Fiction, right? Well not anymore! Just as Ali Baba once did to open the door to his enchanted treasure trove, the owners of a new oven can now call out "Open Sesame" to open it. A simple "Hey Alexa, open the oven“ would also suffice.
This fairytale come true won our customer 1st Place for "Excellence in Business to Consumer“ at this year's German Innovation Awards. The voice support was developed jointly by TNG and our customer. Now when you have your hands full, using a voice-assistant like Amazon Alexa, you can simply ask the oven to open the door for you.
We are delighted to be a part of the innovations of the future.
JHipster at TNG
A recent workshop with JHipster Core Developer David Steiman ensured that a number of our consultants can optimally support our clients and are up to date with the state of the art in JHipster, in keeping with TNG's ethos of continued professional development for all colleagues, even during the Corona crisis. JHipster is one of the Java world's most popular code generators, and sees much activity on GitHub as well as being used by many companies. The workshop covered topics such as fast realisation of proof-of-concepts and sketching of microservice landscapes. Particularly central was the question of how applications can be developed so as to avoid maintenance-heavy JHipster upgrades.
The workshop took place before Big Techday 2020, under whose auspices David Steiman, together with Frederik Hahne, presented a talk on the JHipster Development Platform. The talk is available on YouTube (in German).
TNG demonstration App featured in S&ST Product Demo
Our demonstration app Person Anonymizer featured in a live online product demo for the S&ST platform. Cameras running the OS developed by Security and Safety Things can execute machine learning algorithms on-device rather than in the cloud. Such cameras can perform a wide range of complex detection tasks without having to send any video data over the wire.
The App showcases how people caught on CCTV cameras can be detected and masked in real time, protecting their privacy whenever surveillance of individuals is not the camera's intended use case. The video is available on YouTube.
Page Gardener App helps keeping Confluence content up to date
Often on company wikis, information is written once and then quickly forgotten about. This information is then neither updated nor archived, even though it may be out of date. An app designed by TNG, our Page Gardener Companion for Confluence, helps address this issue.
Users and administrators can define responsible persons who will be reminded at regular intervals to maintain and update the contents of particular sites and spaces within Atlassian Confluence. This automation helps keep your pages up to date, avoids misunderstandings that cost time and money, and allows you to focus on the content, not the process.
Have we piqued your interest? Then check out the Atlassian Marketplace and try the app for 30 days completely free.
Big Techday talks now available online
Were you unable to attend the Virtual Big Techday on May 8th? Missed a talk? Or was there a talk so good you want to watch it again? Many talks are now online in our YouTube playlist. From A ("Autonomous Football Robots in the RoboCup Small Size League") to Z ( "Wie Zahlen Farben Schaffen - How Numbers Create Colours") you'll find it all there. Happy Watching!
TNG with deepfakes on WDR
How deceptively real are deepfakes? And do they also work in real time? In the WDR programme “reporter”, TNG Innovation Hacking shed light on how photo-realistic and high-quality deepfakes can be, with a demonstration of reporter Saadet Czapski appearing to present "Tagesschau“, the best-known German news programme. Deep Fakes are images or videos that have been altered or falsified by artificial intelligence techniques, and are mostly used in "face swapping", i.e., faces are exchanged in order to create the illusion of seeing another person in the picture or video. TNG's team explained how, after two days of training the artificial neural networks, the results look deceptively real. Deep Fakes can even be created in real time, using a technology that has been developed for research purposes only and that is presented in the report. The technology developed by TNG is not accessible to the public and has the purpose of creating media competence and an awareness of how well-advanced the technology in this area already is. The report was broadcasted on June 1st, 2020 and can be seen on YouTube.
A virtual event location for the Big Techday
We have set up the event location for our Big Techday conference, which will be taking place tomorrow (8th of May 2020). This year, instead of carrying chairs and moving tables – it took lots of code! Our virtual event location has (almost) everything normally found at a conference - although we sadly cannot provide food this year. There are zoom webinars representing each of our "lecture rooms", and it's possible to switch back and forth between them. The talks will also be streamed live on Youtube (Link). Various Slack channels are available to chat with our speakers and other attendees. There will even be tours through our exhibition!