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Tchéhouali Destiny is a professer in international communications at the Université du Québec à Montréal (UQAM). This story originally featured on The Conversation.

Some extreme right-wing groups have even developed conspiracy theories linking 5G to the COVID-19 pandemic. Some activists have gone as far as setting fire to telecommunications towers in Belgium, the Netherlands, and recently in Québec. A couple from Sainte-Adèle has been formally accused of setting fire to two cellphone towers; allegedly, they are behind a wave of fires that damaged at least seven towers in the northern suburbs of Montréal.

The false news concerning 5G spread at lightning speed on social networks, relayed by influencers and celebrities, and is reinforcing the fears of people who were already suspicious of 5G’s potential health effects.

These conspiracy theories argue, for example, that the spread of the virus from the epicenter of the pandemic in Wuhan, China, is linked to the large number of 5G towers in the city. In reality, a 5G network is not even fully deployed there. Other theories falsely claim that the waves emitted by the 5G infrastructure would weaken our immune system.

The World Health Organization (WHO) has had to warn the public about misinformation related to 5G telephone networks, insisting that the networks do not spread COVID-19 and that viruses do not circulate over radio waves or mobile networks. Moreover, COVID-19 is spreading in many countries that do not even have a 5G mobile network.

A revolutionary technology?

The fifth generation of wireless communication technologies, 5G is expected to better cope with the explosion of global data traffic predicted in the coming years. In addition to improving the technical capabilities of the 4G network, this new standard crosses the ultimate frontier essential for massive and simultaneous communications between machines.

How 5G compares to 4G networks. Statista

Among its impacts, 5G will accelerate the automation of industries, the introduction of autonomous vehicles, the development of smart cities, telehealth, and remote surgery. All this will be made possible by three main factors: increased connection speeds through improved use of high frequency bands, reduced latency, and the use of next generation infrastructure such as small directional antennas. These antennae with signal relay devices can be integrated into street fixtures, buildings, transport and utilities to support targeted signal distribution.

Taking into account the potential and real risks and effects on human health, what is the social cost of these new ultra-connected devices?

Deployment in Canada

Regarded by the Information and Communications Technology Council of Canada (ICTC) as “the last beachfront property,” the deployment of 5G in Canada is in the pre-commercialization phase. It will take several more months before Canadians can truly benefit from the innovative services and uses associated with this technology.

Since the end of 2023, major telecommunications companies have announced the construction of their networks and the selection of their equipment manufacturers. Rogers has teamed up with Swedish giant Ericsson, Vidéotron with South Korea’s Samsung, Bell has chosen Finland’s Nokia, and Telus has entered into a partnership with China’s Huawei. It should be noted that the federal government has still not authorized Canadian suppliers to use Huawei’s equipment. This is a sensitive issue, given the allegations of espionage against Huawei, which is suspected of having ties with the Chinese government.

The detention in Vancouver of Meng Wanzhou, Huawei’s chief financial officer, and the escalation of diplomatic tensions between Canada and China put Ottawa in an embarrassing situation. The results of the national security threat investigation are still pending to determine whether Huawei will be allowed to participate in 5G’s operations in Canada.

A poll released by the Angus Reid Institute in late December 2023, indicated that a majority of Canadians (69 percent) want the Chinese telecom giant to play no role in the deployment of 5G mobile technology in Canada. That divide was maintained in another survey released in February.

In addition, delays can be expected in the allocation of frequencies and the establishment of 5G networks due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The latest Ericsson Mobility Report estimates that the 5G market will not really take off until 2023, and forecasts more than one billion subscriptions worldwide by 2023.

A map showing current and planned 5G networks globally. GSMA Intelligence

No danger to human health

Several scientists are concerned about the possible effects of exposure to electromagnetic fields generated by devices connected to the 5G network.

Some studies report symptoms observed in “electrosensitive” people such as stress, headaches, heart problems and impaired cognitive functions (memory, attention, co-ordination) in children. Nevertheless, there is no scientifically proven diagnosis and no causal link can be established today between these symptoms, which remain inexplicable, and exposure to electromagnetic fields.

Research validated by the WHO and health authorities in several countries—including Canada—conclude at this time that 5G does not pose a danger to human health, given national and international standards that limit exposure to radio frequencies

It is already an established fact that electromagnetic waves, such as those emitted by microwave ovens, household appliances, computers, wireless routers, cell phones, and other wireless devices are non-ionizing. Unlike X-rays or ultraviolet rays, they are not powerful enough to reach the cells of the human body and affect our immune system.

The object of all fears

The use of 5G has become a controversial issue, crystallizing society’s concerns. It is not the first time (and won’t be the last) that technological progress has been challenged by irrational fear generated by uncertainty about the risks of a technology perceived as invasive.

However, the overwhelming enthusiasm of technophiles and other “early adopters” of technological innovations should not lead us into the “technological solutionism” that would present 5G as the new life-saving technology. On the other hand, the skepticism of technophobes and the opposition of anti-5G activists and conspiracy seekers must not lead us into collective paranoia.

Between these two extremes—and in the current context of a paradigm shift—we recommend a third way: reinventing society’s relationship with technology in a rational way. The time has come for businesses, public authorities, and citizens to question the challenges, opportunities, vices and virtues, of the widespread digitization of society. The deployment of 5G is part of this process and represents both a new challenge and an opportunity for societal progress.

It is possible to embrace the promises of the digital transformation without neglecting to take the necessary precautions for health and the environment. We must not fall into technological determinism and believe that we have no power over these technologies.

This article was originally published in French.

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5G Bands Supported In India: Everything You Need To Know

India finally kicked off the 5G spectrum auctions this Tuesday on 26th July, 2023. The auction is currently in progress with India’s major telecom providers – Reliance Jio, Airtel, Idea-Vodafone, and the new entrant, Adani Data Networks — aggressively participating in the 5G bidding. Ashwini Vaishnaw, the minister for Electronics & IT in India, said that bids worth Rs 1.49 lakhs have been received so far. While spectrum bidding and allocation is underway, let’s learn about 5G bands supported in India. This will help you understand whether your 5G smartphone will be compatible with the 5G bands in India. On that note, let’s begin.

5G Bands in India: Explained (2024)

In this article, we have added all the supported 5G bands in India, including the low-band, mid-band, and top-tier mmWave frequencies. You can also find the list of supported 5G bands in a tabular format below.

What 5G Bands are Supported in India?

The 5G auction is currently ongoing in India, and it will last until August 14, 2023. However, some key information regarding 5G bands is already in the public domain. The Department of Telecommunications (DoT) has floated the sale of these 5G frequency bands: 600 MHz, 700 MHz, 800 MHz, 900 MHz, 1,800 MHz, 2,100 MHz, 2,300 MHz, 3,300MHz, 3,500 MHz, and 26 GHz.

As you can notice, radio bands from all categories — be it low-band, mid-band, or high-band (mmWave) — are all available. If you want to learn about different types of 5G bands (sub-6GHz vs mmWave), head over to our linked explainer.

Not to mention, 5G phones from Apple and Samsung to Xiaomi, Realme, etc., all come with the n78 5G band support. So yeah, the n78 5G band is supported in India. Even the original OnePlus Nord, which supports one 5G band, supports the n78 5G band. So yeah, you will also be able to enjoy 5G services when they launch in India. According to some reports, a good tranche of 3.5GHz airwaves has been bought by both Jio and Airtel.

Apart from that, telcos are aggressively bidding for the low-band 700MHz frequency as it’s being touted to bring 5G to both remote and dense areas. The 700MHz frequency band can easily penetrate walls and buildings and can extend the 5G coverage area significantly. It’s also twice as efficient as 900MHz and much cheaper than the 1800MHz frequency band, which is usually used in rural areas to extend the coverage.

In addition, the 700MHz can be used to deliver true standalone 5G (SA 5G), but it will require the telecom operators to upgrade their whole network gear. Nevertheless, the n28 frequency is another 5G band that will be supported in India by almost all the telecom companies and smartphones.

Finally, Adani Data Networks and Jio are showing great interest in the ultra-fast mmWave 5G band, specifically the n258 band, also known as the 26GHz (24.25 – 27.5 GHz) frequency band. This is an elite, ultra-low latency 5G band that promises speeds up to 10Gbps.

List of Supported 5G Bands in India (August 2023)

Here is a list of all supported 5G bands in India. It’s not an exhaustive list, but as we get more information from the 5G spectrum bidding, we will keep updating this list.

Frequency5G bands

600MHzn71

700MHzn28

800MHzn5

900MHzn8

1800MHzn3

2100MHzn1

2300MHzn40

2500MHzn41

3300 – 3800MHzn78

3300 – 4200MHzn77

4400 – 5000MHzn79

26GHz (24.25 – 27.5 GHz)n258

5G Network Release Timeline in India

After the first day of the 5G spectrum auction in India, IT Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw said that the bidding of the 5G spectrum will be completed by August 14. That means it’s likely that Prime Minister Modi will announce the initial launch of 5G services on August 15, in line with recent speculations.

Four rounds of 5G auction has been completed. So far it is expected that the revenue generated is around Rs 1,45,000 crores. We have to complete this process by August 14 & 5G service in the country will start by September-October: Information Technology Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw chúng tôi ANI (@ANI) July 26, 2023

After that, somewhere between September and October later this year, 5G services will be rolled out to consumers in pilot testing stage. Additionally, 5G services will be initially offered in 13 Indian cities, including Ahmedabad, Bengaluru, Chandigarh, Chennai, Delhi, Gurugram, Gandhinagar, Hyderabad, Jamnagar, Kolkata, Lucknow, Mumbai, and Pune.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

When will the 5G auction end in India?

The 2023 5G spectrum auction in India will continue till August 14. Following that, the spectrums will be allocated to telecom providers for testing and final rollout.

When will 5G arrive in India?

According to IT Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw, initial testing of 5G services will happen around September or October in India. However, the full-fledged rollout of 5G services is expected to begin as early as March 2023.

Some of the supported 5G bands in India are n78, n77, n28, and n41. For a complete list, read our article to learn about the compatible 5G frequencies and bands in the country.

Is mmWave 5G coming to India?

Yes, the Indian government is auctioning spectrum for the 26GHz (n258) frequency band, which offers unparalleled speed and almost zero latency. Both Jio and Adani Data Networks have shown keen interest in buying the top-tier spectrum.

What 5G bands should I look for in a smartphone in India?

5G Bands of Jio, Airtel, Vodafone Idea & Adani in India

Tiktok Is Paying Creators: All You Need To Know

TikTok, despite the criticism it has faced for allegedly compromised security, continues to reign as one of the most successful social networking sites on the planet. Since its inception, TikTok has tried to encourage its young, thriving user base, allowing them to promote and celebrate their freedom and creativity as they see fit.

And if not freedom of expression wasn’t luring enough, TikTok has also started paying its popular creators quite handsomely, making even the biggest video sharing platform, YouTube, jealous.

So, if you are one of the thriving stars of TikTok and want to make a living doing what you love, read on to learn all about TikTok’s payment program for its ambitious young creators.

Does TikTok actually pay?

If you’re one of the millions of social media creatures who are tired of getting scolded every other minute, you’d be happy to know that TikTok has made sure that you have an answer any time an “adult” asks you to ditch the phone and do something “productive.” Yes, that’s right! TikTok has finally announced a fund for its ingenious creators, and the total sum is not at all shabby.

As per TikTok’s very own newsroom website, the company kicked off the highly-anticipated Creators Fund in the final days of July with an initial sum of $200 million. However, after receiving an overwhelming response since the announcement, TikTok quickly improved the offering. A week later, on the 29th of July, TikTok shared that the Creators Fund is expected to grow to over $1 billion in the United States, over the next three years. Global users, too, are in for a treat, as the China-based company expects the fund to grow to over $2 billion, globally over the same three-year window.

Related: What is TikTok Creator Fund And How Does It Work?

Who has the opportunity to apply to the TikTok Creators Fund?

If you’re a citizen of the United States of America who happens to be over 18-years-old and has a considerable following on TikTok, you can happily apply for TikTok’s Creator Fund program. Now, we all know how generous TikTok is being with the Creator Fund. However, that doesn’t mean even the less popular users would be able to reap its rewards. The short-video sharing platform has imposed some staunch restrictions on the applicants, and it’s bound to discourage some budding TikTok enthusiasts.

What about TikTokers outside the US?

As of yet, the Creator Fund program has only gone live in the United States. However, that doesn’t mean TikTok is keeping other popular TikTokers out of the race. TikTok has already announced a whopping $2 billion-fund for global creators, which is bound to encourage the creative minds on the platform.

The enrollment program is set to commence in September in Europe and could trickle down to other continents in the coming months.

TikTok Creator Fund Application Requirements

As highlighted in the previous section, the Creator Fund application is only open for the citizen of the United States. So, if you’re not a resident of the said country, you probably won’t have the chance to opt for the same any time soon.

The US citizens, who are over 18, also need to have at least 10,000 followers. They must have racked up at least 10,000 video views over the last 30 days. And finally, they must regularly post original videos, which also adhere to TikTok’s community standards.

How to manually apply for the TikTok Creator Fund?

Over 18 and check all the right boxes? Then, all you have to do is successfully apply for the program. Sadly, if you’ve gone through TikTok’s newsroom article, you’d see that there’s no particular way of applying for the said Fund. Additionally, we’re also not sure whether TikTok would ever publish a clear cut procedure for the same.

Given how popular TikTok is, there is bound to be a plethora of high-profile creators on the platform, which makes it super difficult for TikTok to go through all of their profiles after they apply. Additionally, many creators, who have over 10,000 followers and 10,000 video views, are likely to feel the urge to apply for the Fund, overlooking TikTok’s requirement for ‘Original Content.’ Considering all the factors, TikTok has decided to keep the application process under wraps for the time being and only offer it to creators it sees fit.

What does ‘Original Content’ mean?

‘Original Content’ refers to the content that users create by themselves, hoping to make it go viral, or just for fun. What that means is that if you create a little dance routine that is soon replicated by other TikTokers, you earn the tag of an original creator.

As you’d expect, it’s rather difficult to create such content on a regular basis, so, it’s not unusual to just participate in simple trends and routines. However, when you do, make sure to give it your very special twist to get noticed. Instead of doing a regular dance number, maybe bring your pet into the mix, or you could even ask your grandmother to make a special appearance. The goal here is to stand out in the sea of million TikTokers.

How does TikTok select creators for its Creator Fund program?

As we’ve discussed in the previous section, TikTok is yet to offer its users a way to apply for the Creator Fund manually. So, currently, TikTok is depending on its algorithm to fetch and reward its most valued creators.

TikTok is sending a notification to eligible creators, asking them whether they’d like to enroll for the Creator Fund program. Once they agree, they’d be asked to fill out a form and submit for verification. TikTok would finally ask for their email ID and subsequent details before taking them to their curated Creator Fund dashboard, which would display the total amount transferred from TikTok to the user’s account.

How long does it take to receive payment?

Once you’ve gotten into the Creator Fund program, it could take up to three days for Tiktok to transfer the due amount to your account. So, don’t be alarmed if you don’t see money in your account right away. Simply sit tight for a few days and let TikTok take care of the rest.

How is the payment processed?

TikTok doesn’t allow you to add your regular bank account details for the Creator Fund program as it would create more complexity due to the sheer number of banks there are in the United States alone. To declutter, TikTok has teamed up with PayPal — the most trusted digital wallet in the world — to pay its loyal users. So, before you get paid, you just need to make sure your PayPal account is linked to TikTok.

How to link your PayPal account to TikTok?

First, create a PayPal account with the same first and last name as your TikTok account. Once you’ve done that, download the PayPal app (if you haven’t already) and log in with the appropriate credentials. Then, tap on the gear-shaped settings icon at the top-right corner. From there, you’d be able to view and copy your PayPal link — under your profile picture.

With the PayPal link set aside, now go to TikTok and log in with the appropriate credentials. Once you have some money in your account, you can choose to withdraw through your PayPal account. On the money withdrawal screen, pick PayPal as your default withdrawal account and enter the email ID associated with your PayPal account. Finally, when prompted for your PayPal ID, enter the ID you copied from the PayPal app in the previous step.

What are the minimum and maximum withdrawal limits?

As per TikTok’s withdrawal instructions, a user can only withdraw when the total balance crosses the $100 mark. Even a cent below that and TikTok would not let you withdraw through your account. However, as shown in the screenshot above, the minimum fund for withdrawal could also be just half of the disclosed amount — $50, only. There is a consistency issue when it comes to the minimum withdrawal limit, for sure.

There’s also a max limit to it, even though you’re unlikely to cross it. TikTok states that no individual would be allowed to withdraw more than $1000 per calendar day.

How much money can you make from TikTok Creator Fund?

As per the video linked above, a user got $60 for a video with 500,000 views. Another user claimed that she got only $123 for a video with 100 million views. Some others claimed that they got under $2 for their efforts. There’s YouTube another video by Quincy Moreland that showcases the amount of money the user got. He showed that the amount is credited every day, like clockwork, but TikTok doesn’t give you a breakdown of the amount you generated from views.

Additionally, TikTok has asked creators not to share their earnings publicly, which has made it even more difficult for us to get a clearer picture. However, the situation is very likely to improve in the coming weeks as more and more users start getting accepted to the program.

Would you get paid for previous video views?

TikTok’s Creator Fund is a rather new initiative. So, it’s not unusual to enquire whether older videos, especially the popular ones, would bring pennies and dollars to your account.

Judging by real user reports, TikTok isn’t too keen on paying the big bucks for videos that were published on an earlier date, irrespective of their popularity. However, you are likely to get paid for the views you generate after you’ve enrolled in the Creator Fund program.

For example, if you have a video with 10,000 views, but it was published before you enrolled, you won’t get paid for the views before the enrollment. But, if the video continues to reel in views, you’d get compensated for the views you accumulate from the same video, after being associated with the program. So, anything after the 10,000-mark is fair game and would earn you cents and dollars.

How many TikTokers have benefitted from the TikTok Creator Fund?

A couple of weeks ago, on August 10th, TikTok published a list of 19 creators who were the first to benefit from the program. Although many others have seen a few dollars credit to their respective accounting, TikTok has refrained from releasing the names.

Here are 10 names from the original list of 19:

@acooknamedmatt – Matt Broussard, chef.

@alex.stemp – Alex Stemplewski, photographer.

@avani – Avani Gregg, master of beauty and makeup.

@brittany_broski – Brittany Tomlinson, “Kombucha Girl.”

@cheyennejazwise – Cheyenne Jaz Wise, cosplay creator.

@daviddobrik – David, digital entertainment personality.

@doctor.jesss – Jess Andrade, pediatric doctor.

@dreadknotwoodshop – Darryl Jones, woodturner.

@feelgoodfoodie – Yumna Jawad, food Vlogger.

@heyeliza –  Eliza, daughter of Chance Moore and Kate Hudson, is a beautiful 10-month old girl battling cancer. Channel is based on optimism and dealing with a difficult situation.

What will happen if TikTok gets banned in the United States?

TikTok’s feud with the administration is for everyone to see. The China-based social networking app has no intention of backing down, and the White House, too, remains adamant as ever. So, considering the raging conflict, it’s not unnatural to think about the fate of the app.

As we all know, TikTok was recently banned in India — which used to be one of TikTok’s biggest hunting grounds — and the US is looking to follow suit. However, given the lawsuit TikTok has filed against the administration, we can safely say that the matter isn’t likely to resolve itself anytime soon. Additionally, with the launch of Creator Fund, TikTok has also struck the right chord with the public, who would now be extra determined to keep the service running.

Still, if it all goes south and TikTok does end up getting banned in the States, we’re afraid the Creator Fund would also cease to exist. The service would continue to pay until the last working day, we reckon, but nothing beyond that.

How will the Creator Fund impact social media?

TikTok, which happens to be the hottest social networking site on the planet, has given its potential users and current creators another incentive to join the growing community. With the help of Creator Fund, TikTok will look to draw more people to the platform, show them that social media influencers can make a good amount of money.

Additionally, since TikTok’s Creator Fund focuses a lot on ‘Original Content’ the overall quality of the social media site is likely to change for the better. More and more users would look to change their usual posting routines and look to create content that’d be engaging for people on the platform. The Creator Fund could and should breed more creators, and not just encourage people to follow popular routines.

Career Insights: All You Need To Know About Nlp Engineers

learn everything about NLP Engineers: Role, qualifications, skills, top institutes, recruiters, etc.

Roles and responsibilities: Natural Language Processing Engineer helps in improving our NLP products and creating new NLP applications. NLP Engineer responsibilities include transforming natural language data into useful features using NLP techniques to feed classification algorithms. To succeed in this role, you should possess outstanding skills in statistical analysis, machine learning methods, and text representation techniques.

Average salary (per annum)- US$128,915

Qualifications: 

Proven experience as an NLP Engineer or similar role

Understanding of NLP techniques for text representation, semantic extraction techniques, data structures, and modeling

Ability to effectively design software architecture

Deep understanding of text representation techniques (such as n-grams, a bag of words, sentiment analysis, etc), statistics and classification algorithms

Knowledge of Python, Java, and R

Ability to write robust and testable code

Experience with machine learning frameworks (like Keras or PyTorch) and libraries (like sci-kit-learn)

Strong communication skills

An analytical mind with problem-solving abilities

Degree in Computer Science, Mathematics, Computational Linguistics, or similar field.

Top 3 Online Courses:

Data science, Code academy: Machine Learning, Data Science, Python, Regular Expression, NLTK, spaCy, TensorFlow, sci-kit-learn, and more.

The course is for those who want to understand how computers work with human language, learn techniques and libraries for data analysis, and create natural language processing tools. 

Coursera – Natural Language Processing Specialization: This course covers a wide scope of tasks in Natural Language Processing from essential to cutting-edge: sentiment analysis, summarization, dialogue state tracking, to give some examples. After finishing, you will have the option to perceive NLP tasks in your everyday work, propose approaches, and judge what strategies are probably going to function admirably.

Natural Language Processing (NLP) with Python NLTK – Udemy: The course is structured as a prologue to the crucial concepts of Natural Language Processing (NLP) with Python. Mainly centered around working with NLTK, it gives the possibility of such NLP tasks as word tagging and chunking. As an enhancement, it presents certain machine learning algorithms, for example, credulous Bayes.

Top Institutes Offering the Program:

M.S. in Statistics, Data Science :Science: Stanford University

Master of Science in Data Science: University of Washington

Master of Science in Analytics: Northwestern University

Top Recruiters for This Job:

Eliassen Group: Eliassen Group provides strategic consulting and talent solutions to drive our clients’ innovation and business results. Its purpose is to positively impact the lives of its employees, clients, consultants, and the communities in which we operate. Leveraging over 30 years of success, its expertise in talent solutions, life sciences consulting, Agile consulting, cloud services, risk management, business optimization, and managed services enables the company to partner with its clients to execute its business strategy and scale effectively. 

Judge Group: The Judge Group, celebrating its 50th anniversary, is a leading professional services firm specializing in talent, technology, and learning solutions. It consults, staff, trains, and solves. Through its work, it makes people and organizations better. Its services are successfully delivered through a network of more than 30 offices in the United States, Canada, and India. The Judge Group serves more than 50 of the Fortune 100 and is responsible for over 9,000 professionals on assignment annually across a wide range of industries.

Jobot: Jobot blends proprietary AI technology and experienced recruiting pros to create the first of its kind job matching engine. This unique blend of technology and recruiting skills make recruiting top talent and building a positive work culture possible for every company. 

Huxley Banking & Financial Services: It delivers expert permanent and contract recruitment services across the US and all major financial hubs globally. Its efficient structure consists of delivery teams split by vertical market specialization. Through its local market knowledge, Huxley’s extensive database, and the support of an established global network, it identifies professionals its competitors would struggle to find.

Click This: All About Mechanical Keyboards And Why You Need One

Keyboards are of two kinds: (1) the cheapo, no-name slabs that are bundled by the millions with PCs, and (2) the ones that are actually worth using—and in most cases, that’s a mechanical keyboard. Stalwart friend to gamers and power typists alike, the mechanical keyboard’s physical operation and durability make it the gold standard for computer use. It’s not the only option out there—good alternatives abound for wireless, ergonomic, and other purposes—but if nothing else, ditching that freebie is something everyone should do. Read on to learn more about why a mechanical keyboard should be in your future.

Why mechanicals are worth the money

Even though mechanical keyboards tend to cost a bit more, their build quality is worth it. Rather than lay down some cheap membrane layers and rubber-domed keys, these bad boys sport heavy-duty switches and functional parts. This makes them durable, and it also gives them tactile feedback that detects a keystroke before the key bottoms out. That means that with a little practice, your fingers are doing only half the work, sparing them a world of hurt.

Microsoft

Key ghosting occurs when a keyboard can’t distinguish a keystroke. The above are examples of indistinguishable key presses since they share rows and columns on the keyboard matrix.

Mechanical keyboards also multitask better. Gamers out there will understand the frustrations of holding down multiple keys (for example, sprinting forward while reloading) and hitting one last key for the ultimate grenade kill, then nothing. Did you screw up and miss the key? Not likely. Key ghosting happens when three keys are held down and a fourth keystroke doesn’t register, due to hardware or software limitations on matrix keyboards (keyboards that use multiple keys on the same circuit). Mechanical keyboards handle this issue with Key Rollover, which provides more consecutive keystrokes than the rubber-domed keyboards allow—usually six with a USB connection, and infinite over the older PS/2 connection.

Which switch is right for you?

Igor Wallossek

Cherry switches (manufactured by ZF Electronics, formerly Cherry Corporation) are the most common type. Every type is denoted by a color and varies in actuation force (how much pressure is required to actuate) and in audibility levels.

Cherry MX Red (Linear switch)

The lower actuation force makes rapid keystrokes much easier than MX Black switches, but mistyping is also a more common issue. Certain games require quicker actuation, such as first-person shooters, while others, such as real-time strategy games, require accuracy. It’s up to the gamer to decide which works best. Cherry MX Red switches are generally more expensive due to higher demand.

Cherry MX Brown (Tactile)

Cherry MX Brown is the quietest of the tactile bunch and requires very little actuation force (45 grams). Like the other Cherry switches, it actuates at 2 millimeters, but it can travel as far as 4 millimeters to the bottom.

Cherry MX Clear (Tactile)

Cherry MX Clear switches are considered the “stiffer browns.” Their actuation force is 55 grams, with a peak force (force to press the key all the way down) of 65 grams.

They’re often compared to the feel and sound of a  rubber-domed keyboard, with a more tactile feel and higher actuation force. Though some enjoy the stiffer resistance, they’re not as popular as other types and are generally difficult to find on today’s keyboards.

Buckling Spring (Tactile)

Topre (Tactile)

Topre switches are so new that they’re still tough to find. They act as a hybrid between mechanical and membrane: A rubber dome sits over a spring that creates a capacitive circuit when pressed.

The actuation force depends on the model but can vary between 30 and 60 grams. The key actuates at the half way point, then a tactile bump can be felt. Bottoming out is common since the resistance disappears after the actuation. They are some of the quietest and smoothest switches available, even when compared to linear switches.

Switch gifs created by Castin Cramer

What You Need To Know About The Telegram Messenger

Telegram Messenger is an instant messaging app that uses phone numbers (or optionally usernames) to connect users. With Telegram, users can send messages, pictures, videos, audios and any other type of file. The instant messenger app category is a hotly contested field, and some of Telegram’s competitors include WhatsApp, Google’s Hangout, BBM, WeChat, Facebook’s Messenger and LINE (among many others).

About Telegram Messenger

Telegram Messenger launched in 2013, created and backed financially by Russian billionaire brothers Pavel and Nikolai Durov, the founders of Russian social networking site VKontakte who wanted to build a communications system that couldn’t be accessed by the Russian security agencies.

It is built on the open source MTProto protocol. Telegram boasts of being fast, reliable and available on (and accessible from) multiple devices at the same time. It also uses a distributed server architecture with multiple data centres spread out in different jurisdictions around the world.

Telegram is available for Android, iPhone, Windows Phone, Linux, Windows, OSX and via the web.

Features

To begin using Telegram, you must register with a phone number. The phone number then becomes the your identity on Telegram. In addition, you can set a username through which other users can connect and chat without having access to the phone number tied to the username. Usernames are optional and can be deleted at anytime by simply saving an empty username.

In addition to text messages, users can send files of any type up to 1.5 GB. Telegram messages also indicate the status of messages sent. One check signifies the message has been delivered to Telegram cloud, and the recipient has been sent a notification, while two checks indicate the recipient has read the message.

Messages sent with Telegram are encrypted by default, between the user device and telegram servers, which guards against man-in-the-middle attacks. In addition, the messages and files are stored encrypted on Telegram servers, while the decryption keys are stored in Data Centres in other jurisdictions. This way, neither Telegram staff nor government agencies with subpoenas can get to user data.

For the truly paranoid, Telegram has Secret Chats which are conversations between users that make use of end-to-end encryption. That is the chat is visible only to the two parties involved in the discussion, and even Telegram servers cannot view the contents of the chat. When a secret chat is set up between two devices, Telegram helpfully generates a picture visualization of the encryption key for the chat, which both users can compare, and if the image matches, then the chat is secure.

For secret chats, a self destruct timer can also be set on messages. This has to be set before the message is sent. The timer begins when the recipient views the message, and when it runs out the message is deleted from both devices. Photos sent with a timer less than one minute can only be viewed while holding a finger on them, and helpfully Telegram notifies the sender if a screenshot is taken.

Users can create groups containing as many as 200 users and can send broadcast messages to as many as 100 contacts. The difference between groups and broadcasts is that in a broadcast message recipients don’t know about each other, while in a group all participants see all other participants.

Conclusion

Obaro Ogbo

Always on the look out for easier methods of solving complex problems, especially using computers. Obsessed with everything software related (languages, operating systems, frameworks, etc).

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