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More than 200 children learn programming and robotics with the support of Telekom Romania and Telekom Romania Foundation

By Edwig Ban

230 children between 6 and 17 years enrolled in the CoderDojo Bucharest North programming and robotics workshops supported by Telekom Romania and Telekom Romania Foundation. The workshops, which will be held monthly during the 2017-2018 school year, are divided, based on their types, in: Algorithm, Arduino, Java Minecraft, Khan and Scratch, the last two of them targeting beginners and advanced.
This year, the number of children almost doubled compared to the one in the school year 2016-2017, when about 130 children attended these workshops.
Students will be co-ordinated throughout the sessions by 22 volunteer mentors - programming experts, parents who have knowledge in this area or former students of the first workshops of CoderDojo Bucharest North. "CoderDojo Bucharest North is a community that has had a spectacular growth, as is the case with the cutting edge technology. For the children and for the mentors that we have been supporting for over 5 years, enthusiasm and creative solutions in programming are the only rules that guide them. We hope this Dojo will become a model for others created countrywide and we hope that the projects to be developed by these children will take concrete forms and turn into viable business solutions", said Ruxandra Voda, Communications Director at Telekom Romania.
This year, 100 children are enrolled in the beginner programming workshops, where Khan Academy and Scratch platforms are used. At the same time, 60 children were enrolled in Khan and Scratch workshops for advanced students, classes where children will work in teams and will develop projects with themes chosen by themselves or proposed by mentors. Within these workshops, children develop soft skills like teamwork, communication skills and learn the stages of a project. They will design games, will learn how to program them, how to test them, and how to pitch them in front of an audience.
Another workshop is Arduino, where children learn the secrets of computer assisted electronics and where a microcontroller plate is designed to interact with the environment via sensors and drive systems. In order to write the programs running on the microcontroller, it is used the programming language C. Within this workshop, mentors are preparing the children for a future career in the Internet of Things technologies. Students will be initiated in the using of hardware components – base electronics, LEDs, speakers – all controlled by Arduino's microcontroller.
At the Java Minecraft workshop, 33 young people will be guided and assisted in understanding the programming mechanisms involved in the very popular Minecraft game, which has over 100 million players around the world. Children will make changes to this game using the Java programming language.
This year, an Algorithmic Workshop was also introduced. Within this framework, 11 young people will enter the secrets of algorithms in mathematics and computer science, the two sciences being simultaneously involved in the understanding of the whole process. There, those enrolled will go through basic notions, learning specific algorithms and programming in C language.
CoderDojo is an international movement initiated in Ireland in 2011, which aims to give learners a context in which to understand programming in an open, informal environment through regular sessions, all being extracurricular activities. Dojos are initiated, coordinated and conducted by volunteers. In Romania, currently exist more than 40 Dojos. CoderDojo North Bucharest is supported by Telekom Romania and the Telekom Romania Foundation. (rbj/05.10.2017)

Telekom and Vivid present the first modular smart house in Romania

By  rbj

Telekom and Vivid present the first modular smart home project in Romania, which integrates a complete Smart Home solution. This includes both home monitoring and control technologies, as well as Internet TV and connectivity services, providing a complete ecosystem. The main benefits that the Smart Home solution offers to the future owners of Vivid modular houses are safety, comfort, data security, electricity and heat consumption efficiency.

"The evolution of technology changes not only the working space and the way we work, but also the space we live in. Smart Home solutions naturally complete our portfolio, along with the development of Smart Office and Smart City projects. Safety, comfort and more efficient management of the living space have become today increasing needs for people, for which the innovations in the recent years can provide concrete solutions at hand”, said Ovidiu Ghiman, Chief Commercial Officer, Business Segment, Telekom Romania.

The Smart Home solution provided by Telekom Romania and installed in the demo Vivid House is based on the Home Centre central base that connects to the Internet via an Ethernet port and communicates wireless with the other Smart Home devices. The installation of the solution is thus non-invasive, with no holes in the walls and no cables. The initial setting of the Smart Home system, as well as the setting of various scenarios and actions for sensors, are done through the dedicated application that can be accessed on laptop or PC. Then, the user will be able to monitor and to manage the system through the dedicated apps on smartphone and tablet.

Depending on their specific needs and preferences, users can install sensors and control devices to automate, monitor and intelligently manage all home functions: the interior and exterior lighting system, automatic door opening or closing, socket control, water and gas control, flood detectors, smoke detectors, sensors for temperature, motion, brightness, vibration, blinds automation, heating control, air conditioning control, TV and audio system control. The "Plug & Play" devices are ready for immediate use, requiring only a few minutes configuration.

Through the sensors, the system can command the turning on of the lights when a person is detected or their turning off after a predefined interval. Also, with the light intensity measurement function, the system can set optimal lighting parameters for everyone in the house. Telekom's Smart Home solution also integrates the control of the TV and the audio system, elements that can be included in predefined scenarios such as the automatic turning on of the TV on the favourite program provided by Telekom Internet TV service when the door opens and when the user is authenticated through the dedicated code.

The Smart Home solution from Telekom Romania provides protection and safety to Vivid Modular House, offering a real support in crisis situations, such as fires, floods or attempted burglary, through "guardians" like the door or window sensors, or multifunctional motion sensors, smoke sensors (present in each room), flood sensors in bathrooms and kitchen, and Smart sockets, which can, for example, turn off the power. The entrance door is provided with the Yale smart lock, which ensures home security without having to use the keys. This can be ordered via the KeyFob remote control by entering a code or e-label with radio frequency identification that contains the authentication data of people who want to enter the house.

When an undesired event is detected, such as an intrusion attempt, the presence of the smoke or of the water, the system sends the owner of the house notifications both on the mobile phone and sound alerts through the siren attached to the system, as well as commands to stop water or gas, as the case.

With the Smart Home system, owners can control their Vivid house and check the status of their devices from anywhere via the Internet. The intelligent house system remotely informs the user on all events relevant to the proper management of the home – from the opening of a window or of the door, the temperature at different spots in the house, the movement of the persons inside, the state of the lights, the occurrence of water leaking in different areas or the presence of smoke.

The user can remotely control the turning on or off of the lights, choose the colours of the lights, raise or lower the blinds, turning on or off of the heating system, or set the temperature in each room, by using the dedicated app on smartphone or tablet, as well as on laptop / PC, via Internet.

When at home, Vivid owners can control the ecosystem by dedicated remote control, dedicated button or dedicated SWIPE tablet. At the same time, the button can also be used as a panic button.

The access to the Vivid House and owner information are protected at the highest level through data security and encrypted communication.

Also, the Smart Home implemented by Telekom allows owners to make electricity and heat consumption more efficient. Thus, users can monitor the energy consumption by the various devices in the house and easily identify the highest consumers.

The Smart Home implemented by Telekom Romania within the Vivid project uses FIBARO devices. (rbj/05.07.2017)

European project: You buy an electronic ticket and travel more comfortably

>>> ETS project proposes a solution to travel easier using the public transport wherever you are in Europe

By rbj

Information technology is transforming our lives and influences our manner of travel and searching for information. The market of electronic ticketing systems is witnessing a real effervescence and provides numerous opportunities: mobile applications for smart-phones, customized advertising and loyalty programmes. Introducing an electronic ticketing system represents a major trend for a wide range of business types in the fields of transportation, tourism, culture and others.

The ETS Project - „Electronic Ticketing System” is a European project aiming at developing a platform to provide the possibility for buying directly from your mobile tickets from any transport operator, preserving the ticket in the mobile phone, its automatic validation and providing travel information and info about the touristic attractions nearby.

Currently, the devices for access’ control, such as barriers, gates and turnstiles limit streamlining the passengers’ flow. Their reduction, and ideally, their elimination will lead to increasing the comfort in use, to reduction in operating costs, and, very important, to getting valuable information that can be used for improving services for passengers. The system will have functionalities for detecting the electronic ticket and passengers’ counting, which allows not only increasing the quality of automatic taxes’ collection, but also detecting fraud attempts.

The successful introduction of the ETS solution into everyday life is facilitated by the existence on the market of an impressive variety of equipments and applications using mobility, such as: mobile phones, tablets, gadgets endowed with communication possibilities (GPS, Bluetooth, NFC). In other words, a large number of the ETS system’s potential users are already familiarized with these devices and there are promising conditions regarding acceptance of an ETS system, allowing not just the journey, but also benefitting the services regarding tourism, culture, other fields implying the necessity of existing a common manner of procuring access means, their validation, and payment means for the services they are benefitting from.

The ETS project is funded through the European programme ITEA 3 and it is implemented by 8 partners in 5 countries: SIVECO (Romania), CONVEX NETWORK (Romania), ELEKTRONET (Turkey), TMOB (Turkey), DTS (South Korea), IDI EIKON (Spain), NTB (Spain) and ISEP_GECAD (Portugal).

In the period of 29-31 March, the Consortium members met in Bucharest for the first project meeting, where they discussed about the users’ actual needs, the stakeholders’ involvement (transport operators, telephone companies, tourism operators, government and public authorities), as well as about the ETS system’s architecture.

ETS will have two pilot implementations in Turkey (Istanbul and Ankara) and one in Portugal (Coimbra), which will be carried out by the end of the project, in December 2018. (rbj/31.03.2017)

Another Romanian start-up joins hub:raum’s accelerator program, with a smart transportation solution

 Romanian team Transit Director selected for the first 2017 edition of the Warp Sprint program of the hub:raum Krakow accelerator program;  Transit Director, which develops comprehensive solutions for public transit route planning, was selected out of more than 300 applications

By rbj

Romanian team Transit Director, providing comprehensive solutions for public transit route planning, as well as intuitive tools for surveying and analysing data associated with public transport networks, has been selected to participate to hub:raum Warp Sprint. Along with the Romanian team will participate also team Maggie from Croatia which develops voice artificial intelligence solutions.

The solutions of the two teams fit the best the needs targeting the Smart City, Logistics and Transportation, respectively Omnichannel verticals on which focuses the first edition of 2017 of the acceleration program Warp Sprint rolled out by hub:raum Krakow, the innovation hub of Deutsche Telekom. There were over 300 projects from 20 countries submitted for this year’s first acceleration round, and more than 20 were originated from Romania.

Transit Director team has the chance to develop faster its solutions during the next up to 4 weeks intensive mentoring sessions, benefiting of the know-how of hub:raum Krakow specialists, respectively the one of this innovation hub’s community.

“Being accepted in the hub:raum Krakow acceleration program is yet another confirmation of the fact the we are delivering the appropriate solutions for emerging needs of the communities. We hope that we will be able to make a difference in short time by expanding in the region and by developing at full scale our services”, stated Emil Dancescu, CEO at Transit Director. The team operates in Romania as Concept Apps.

Starting 2017, in order to deliver even faster results for the benefit of start-ups, hub:raum changed the model of the acceleration programs, using the sprint concept which allows the teams to operate rapidly, to prototype, to lead iterations and based on this to make fast and accurate decisions. The topics under the spotlight of this program are chosen based on the needs of the companies within the Deutsche Telekom Group. This first edition of the hub:raum Krakow acceleration program, rolled out in January 2017, focuses on three verticals: Smart City, Logistics and Transportation, respectively Omnichannel. The solution proposed by Transmit Director team targets especially the markets in Poland and Romania.

Telekom Romania launched since 2016, in Tineretului Park in Bucharest, a Smart City pilot-project with four integrated components on an Internet of Things platform (smart parking, smart lighting, city safety and Wi-Fi with possibility to add data analytics component), in line with Deutsche Telekom Group strategic focus on this vertical.

The previous editions of the hub:raum Krakow Warp accelerator, which had a different format, were attended in total by 9 teams from Romania. Moreover, up to now, two local start-ups received financing from hub:raum: DeviceHub.net in 2015 and OmniPaste in 2014.

hub:raum Krakow is the innovation hub for early-stage startups created by Deutsche Telekom Group in April 2013. It focuses on supporting innovative businesses from Central and Eastern Europe by connecting team, vision, and expertise with the corporate power of the world’s leading integrated telecommunications companies. It is achieved by offering the smart money (commercialization and go-to-market through an access to over 150M Deutsche Telekom customers), comprehensive package of seed funding (up to 300.000€ for 10-20% of equity), co-working space, mentoring and Deutsche Telekom assets.

hub:raum organizes many programs to support European startups, e.g. WARP Sprints (http://www.warpaccelerator.com) and Challenge Up! (IoT Accelerator with Cisco and Intel, http://www.challengeup.com).

Telekom Romania is a dynamic brand, offering mobile and fixed innovative communication services to a broad customer community, using approximately 10 million services.

In 2015, Telekom Romania launched the commercial concept MagentaONE and offered simplified integrated fixed and mobile bundles to both residential and business customers. MagentaONE stands for one Call Center, one bill, one MyAccount application (including one mobile app). Through MagentaONE, Telekom Romania reinforced its leadership position in providing complete telecommunications and IT&C solutions to Romanian companies.

Telekom Romanian is present in the Romanian market since 2014, after the joint rebranding of Romtelecom and COSMOTE Romania.

Telekom is a brand pertaining to Deutsche Telekom, one of the world’s leading integrated telecommunications companies with around 156 million mobile customers, 29 million fixed-network lines and more than 18 million broadband lines (as of December 31, 2015). Deutsche Telekom is present in more than 50 countries and has approximately 225,000 employees worldwide. (rbj/2017.01.23)

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The Romanian Business Journal
Constantin Radut
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031726 Bucharest, Romania

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