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Tbh, we don’t know how our parents planned holidays way back when.

No price comparison online, no filtered results to find the perfect hotel – our travel experiences have been fuelled by technology.

And the tech industry continues to innovate, which will transform our jet-setting plans in incredible ways.

Here are five of the most exciting tech innovations in the travel industry, according to Holidayguru.ie:

1) Augmented Reality (AR)

While we always have notions of picking up a few key phrases before travelling to a foreign country, we have to admit, it doesn’t always happen.

AR is a lifesaver in many ways because, using this, Google Translate lets you take pics of signage you need to be translated. Let’s face it – we’re mostly talking about menus here. Gotta get that holiday grub.

As well, there are also apps like VisitScotland and England’s Historic Cities that can help you learn about cultural sites you’re visiting.

2) Artificial Intelligence (AI)

AI makes travel handy as can be, and it’s what allows Dutch airline KLM to send your boarding pass and other updates through chat apps like Facebook Messenger.

It’s also making waves in the hotel industry. Hilton Hotels’ ‘Connie’ makes guests’ stays feel personal with assisted check-ins and tips.

3) Virtual Reality (VR)

Want to travel without having to go halfway across the world? Well, airlines like Lufthansa have created stunning 360-degree videos so you can experience the amazing visuals of distant destinations without leaving the comfort of your own home.

If you have a VR headset, you can practically have your own holiday looking at what apps like Google Earth VR, NASA, and Boulevard have to offer.

4) Blockchain

Blockchain is a way for digital info to be distributed safely not but copied.

This means that in the future we could possibly say goodbye to passports and boarding passes, and instead verify our identities online at the airport. Imagine how quickly we’d get through to our gate!

5) Voice Control Interface

No, Amazon’s Alexa isn’t just for asking silly questions (though we do really, really enjoy doing that). When asked, she can look through Skyscanner to find the cheapest flights available.

Google Assistant can look for flights and help you practice those handy phrases in foreign languages. Siri is able to check the status of your flight and look for hotels in the area.

So what’re you waiting for? With all of this futuristic tech at our fingertips, holidays are easier than ever before.

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So, while we're all for advances in technology and the endless possibilities they may bring, every now and then there's a scientific breakthrough that leaves us with just one question – why?

Researchers from universities in South Korea, Japan and the US have come together to create a pair of glasses that will enable users to control their mobile phone just by touching their nose.

Cleverly dubbed 'Itichy Nose', the glasses have been designed to interpret different gestures, thus allowing users to reject call, pause a video, or skip a song without ever touching their phones.

The glasses use electrooculography sensors, which are often used by doctors to measure the electric potential in parts of the eye.

Developers hope the unusual piece of kit will help people avoid committing a number of tech-related social faux pas, such as reaching for a phone when in the middle of a conversation.

Speaking to The Verge, co-creator and study first author Juyoung Lee, said: “If an important text from a spouse came in during a business meeting, the user could check it and dismiss it quickly without calling undue attention to the interaction.”

“Similarly, if the user had a list of names and faces to remind her of who is in the meeting, she could scroll through the list until she found the person whose name she forgot.”

“These quick interactions can be very useful but are rare enough to not attract attention.”

OK, so maybe this could come in handy from time to time…

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It's about that time of year again. Evenings are getting shorter, there's a definite chill in the air, and college students across the country are gearing up for another semester of tight deadlines and mid-week partying. 

And whether you're a fresher or a fourth year, it's essential to start the year out in the right foot. 

From laptops to stationary, shopping for college supplies can seem like a daunting task. But never fear – we've done the all hard work for you. 

Here's our top pick of this year's back to college essentials. 

1. Laptop

So, this one is kind of obvious, but important to mention none the less. Whether a you're total tech newbie, or just looking for an upgrade, August is the perfect time to invest in a new piece of kit.

With so many back to college offers just dying to be snapped up, make sure to shop around for the best deals. 

HP Notebook –  €429.99 Currys PC World

2. Headphones

Whether you need to drown out the sounds of a packed canteen, or simply want to unwind with your favourite album on the bus home, headphones are an essential part of college survival – trust us.  

Beats by Dr Dre Solo 3 Wireless On-Ear Headphones – €309.99 Littlewoods Ireland 

3. FitBit 

Let's face it between study and socialising, many students just don't have the time to focus on their health – which is why it's a lot easier to let a gadget do it for you. 

Designed to help you become more active, eat a better and sleep well, a FitBit is the perfect choice for a anyone looking to keep their health on track while studying. 

After all , those late nights, early classes and liquid lunches can really take their toll.

Fitbit Alta HR Black RRP: €149.99 – Currys PC World 

4. Printer

We've all been there. Your essay is due in 15 minutes and someone has chosen that exact moment to print out two copies of their 20,000 word thesis. 

Save yourself the stress and do it at home.

HP Deskjet 3720 AIO Wireless Printer – €79.99 Currys PC World

5. Bag 

It's got to be enough to hold those heavy textbooks, yet stylish enough to bring along to those post-lecture pints. 

It's a fine line. 

Black quilted backpack – €47.00 River Island 

6. Planner/ Notebook

Sure, you could use your phone or laptop to keep track of important dates and deadlines, but there's something oddly satisfying about keeping track of your schedule the old fashioned way. 

Happy Jackson Great Ideas A5 Notebook  – €12.99 Littlewoods Ireland

7. Reusable Coffee Cup

Even if you're not a coffee drinker, a good thermal flask must for those early commutes. 

Whether it's a black americano, a refreshing herbal tea, or just some left over soup from the night fore, there's something very comforting about a warm little pick-me-up on a frosty morning. 

Travel Mug – €6.00 Dunnes Stores 

8. Smoothie Maker 

While the contents of your fridge may not scream health and wellness, chances are you'll be able to forage enough fruits and veggies to whip something together. 

Perfect for an on-to-go breakfast or post-lecture snack, a good quality blender is a welcome addition to any student kitchen. 

Brevill VBL134 Blend-Active Personal Blender  – €39.99 Littlewoods Ireland 

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Tech-savvy Dads are the best, thanks to their propensity for fixing the wifi and their vast knowledge of all things laptop related. 

While they may not be up to speed with the likes of Instagram and Snapchat (a fact that we are grateful for), the tech-savvy Dad loves his techy trinkets, but even better are things he might actually use:

If your Dad is into his fitness, then this is the perfect gift for him. The nifty little device is a handy motivational tool for Dads who like keeping in shape, and it tracks steps, distance, calories burned and active minutes with a simple user interface.

This handy partible projector uses your Dads smartphone turn even the most mundane of surfaces into a TV screen. The crafty contraption is ready for use with iOS, Android and Windows-compatible smart phones.

For the forgetful fathers that we all know and love, the Tile Bluetooth tracker is a fun yet practical gift. The Tile tracking device shares the location of anything they attach it to, such as a wallet, purse or clothing via a smartphone or tablet app. 

If you pops love photography, then this cool camera could be his next upgrade. Family photos are sharp and detailed, thanks to an optical Image Stabilizer which adapts to any scene even when using the long zoom.

If you want to win some serious brownie points with your gaming Dad, this top of the line virtual reality headset will do just that! Yes it's pretty pricey, but maybe it could be a combined Father's Day/Christmas/Birthday gift? 

Every Dad needs a tablet to look down his glasses at. Perfect for reading and browsing. It has up to 12 hours of usage with loads of storage space and the beautiful 10.1” screen makes it the ideal size for watching films, playing games and editing documents.

Got a Dad who is into extreme sports?  The Action Cam can be clicked to a bicycle or helmet for a great view of the action!

For a tech-savvy Dad who love his morning cup of Joe, this smart coffee machine allows you to start the coffee making process from bed int he morning through the complementary app. 

For Dads who love the nostalgia of vinyl, this vintage brass-plated brief-case design provides an eye-catching talking point while playing his beloved records.

Everyone needs a good quality pair of headphones, be it for listening to music or watching movies. Treat your Dda to this snazzy blue pair. 

For a phone case as indestructible as your Dad's old Blockia, look no further. The best part is, this heavy duty case also charges your Dad's phone, so those emergency 'can you give me a lift' calls will never go unanswered. 

Boys toys! This drone is guaranteed to bring hours of fun (or hours of figuring out how to get it off the ground).

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If you're on the look out for a new job, then this could be great news for you.

Version 1, an IT consulting and solutions business, has announced that its bringing nearly 400 new jobs to Dublin.

The company are hiring 365 new employees to work in the area of systems integration, cloud and data analytics.

Image result for version 1

CEO of Version 1, Tom O’Connor, said: "The announcement today of 365 new jobs is as a result  of our growth over the past five years and our confidence in our ambitious growth plans over the next three years.

"We take a huge amount of pride in our employees and a constant focus of ours is on being a best workplace, which has seen Version 1 being named in the Top Ten Best Large Workplaces for the past six years running."

100 of the positions will be filled out by the end of this year, and the other 265 over the next three years.

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Your weekly mega-dose of motivation – from the leaders and trailblazers inspiring those around them.

This week, and in a brand-new series, SHEmazing! chats with Noelle O'Reilly, CEO of the Dublin Tech Summit

 

Publishing; events; one of the world’s biggest social media sites… and now the inaugural Dublin Tech Summit: to date, Noelle O’Reilly’s career has been anything but conventional.

Never mind that she’s still just 30. Nor that she’s a mum-of-one – with a three-legged Puggle called Charlie and a cat called Bella – to occupy her time too.

“I also cook as much as possible and I travel constantly,” she adds with a smile while in conversation recently with SHEmazing!

“Next on my list is Bali and then the Northern Lights.”

Noelle’s success is nothing short of standout – and behind her drive is a single simple trait that she says continues to fuel her now: curiosity.

“I love to learn!” Noelle laughs. “I taught myself how to code; how to build websites; how to play guitar; how to solve a Rubik's Cube.

“I never let anyone tell me that I couldn’t do something.”

It’s an important sentiment considering that Ms O’Reilly is so immersed in the world of tech – an industry which traditionally hasn’t presented as many opportunities for women.

“The number of women working within the technology industry is growing,” she highlights, “yet women still only make up 30 percent of the 7million people working in Europe’s digital sector. And when considering only tech-related roles they are even more underrepresented.

Apple has the highest proportion of female employees in tech roles, but this figure is still only 20 percent. At Twitter, only 10 percent of tech positions are filled by women.

“Women hold just a quarter of Fortune 500 board seats, and only 4 percent of Fortune 500 CEOs are female.

“Young women need to be encouraged to explore their interests in technology from a very young age.

“At the Dublin Tech Summit, we are trying to do our bit too – so we allocated €200,000 worth of complimentary tickets to our women in technology initiative.”

The buzz around the DTS is definitely already humming. Taking place on February 15 and 16 in the Convention Centre, some 10,000 attendees will engage in talks and workshops centring on topics relating to fashion and FinTech, to marketing and big data.

Gary Vaynerchuk, best-selling author and entrepreneur, is already confirmed as being among the illustrious speaking line-up.

Certainly, there can be no doubt that this is an event willing and able to fill the gap left when Paddy Cosgrove’s Web Summit left for Lisbon.

“I wanted to grow something from the ground up,” Noelle – a former director of IMAGE publications who also did a stint with Twitter at the social media giant’s Dublin office – says now of her involvement as CEO.

“That’s what really excites me about what we’re doing at the Dublin Tech Summit. To be a part of setting the tone and direction for years to come is really what motivates our team.”

Naturally, Noelle is drawing now from her past career milestones, lending her unique skills to what amounts to nothing short of a colossal undertaking.

“I knew my experience from fashion to tech and then events would give it the edge that it needed,” she explains.

“I knew I had the drive to focus on the end goal and deliver results. DTS is not just for businesses and tech heads though; we have a stage for visionary leaders and a stage dedicated to fashion, for example.

"The fact that there are eight themes, means that the participants will be from a wider range of backgrounds and I think that makes for a more dynamic experience.”

She continues: “It’s also building something for the city to be really proud of. This is year one; we will learn a lot this year and we want people to join us and let us know what they want for year two. This isn't about us as a company, it’s about Dublin having another string to its bow.

As for the future, in addition to the DTS, Noelle says she will set up her own business consultancy.

“I’ll help other companies take their first steps into the market,” she explains. “The main focus for me is productivity: teaching companies how to be more productive using technology. After that, their market strategy and activation. I am a real believer in simplicity hence my Twitter bio: 'I create. I produce. I simplify.'

Unsurprisingly for someone who has achieved an awful lot at an early age, Ms O’Reilly has weathered her fair share of professional storms.

“When I was younger, maybe in my mid-20s, I felt like my gender held me back a bit. But now, I know my value and my worth so it’s just not an issue anymore.

“I just wish I knew back then what I was capable of. My manager a few years back called me aggressive. I was genuinely hurt by this.

“I remember questioning myself and wondering what I could do to change that. I hated thinking that people found me aggressive.

“Looking back, if I was a man, I would have been called determined, not aggressive. I would have been applauded.

“So my advice to any woman who feels held back in any way is to chase jobs and opportunities when they arise.

"Never presume that you won’t get it! Challenge yourself, learn new skills, and most of all, be confident. You’re better than you think.

 

For the next round of Women In Tech tickets apply here.

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Checking your bank balance can be depressing at the best of times, but realising you have zero funds for beauty essentials is the absolute pits.

Thanks to some makeup-loving tech gods, this situation is currently facing extinction as a range of new “socially activated” vending machines will soon be rolled out across the UK, finally allowing cosmetic junkies to pay for products with their selfies.

According to Grazia, SocialVend machines will reward users for answering questions or sharing Instagram posts which feature a brand’s hashtag, therefore enabling social media users to benefit in a material way from all that time spent online.

 

#adtech16 @adtech @hashtag_photographic #NYC #socialvending #innovation #marketing #thisisthefuture

A photo posted by Social Vend (@social_vend) on

While it is not yet known if or when SocialVend will arrive in Ireland, we’ve everything crossed that it does so in the very near future.

Feat image: Shutterstock

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Everyone knows you’re supposed to use a multitude of clever passwords for the various accounts on your computer.

But let’s face it, unless you’re some form of tech-loving coder, constantly coming up with four numbers here and eight characters there probably feels like a bit of a trek.

A new analysis of leaked Yahoo passwords conducted by security expert Dr Jeff Yan from Lancaster University has revealed the ten codes you definitely should NOT be using if you want to protect your virtual information from hackers.

But unfortunately for many of us, these ten passwords look all too familiar.

Check them out below:

  1. 123456
  2. password
  3. welcome
  4. ninja
  5. abc123
  6. 123456789
  7. 12345678
  8. sunshine
  9. princess
  10. qwerty

Feat image: theodysseyonline

GIFs: Giphy

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Ever been so worse for wear that even ordering a takeaway feels like effort?

Well, at long last the heroes at Domino’s have found a solution.

The pizza giant has launched a new facility which allows customers to order food through Facebook simply by messaging the word “PIZZA” to a contact called “Dom”.

“Dom” – who is in fact an artificially intelligent chatbot – enables Facebook users to satisfy their cravings near instantaneously by automatically ordering a user’s favourite pizza upon receiving the word “PIZZA” or – if you’re really suffering – its emoji equivalent.

To get set up, all you need to do is open an “Easy Order” account with Dominos and link it to your Facebook profile.

Then, open your messages, find “Dom” and let him take care of the rest.

Sundays just got a whole lot better.

 

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A 24,500 square metre data centre which will help run online services including the iTunes store, App store and Siri has been granted planning permission in Galway by An Bord Pleanála.

The establishment of the data centre, which is set to cost approximately €850 million, signals very welcome news for the Republic as it beat out 18 other countries also vying for the project.

Despite flooding fears, energy usage, environmental and climate change impact and wildlife issues being raised in objection, An Bord Pleanála this week ruled in favour of the project.

While acknowledging concerns, the board insisted that the centre's establishment would not infringe on the surrounding community.
 
"It is considered that the proposed development would not seriously injure the amenities of the area or of property in the vicinity, would not have an unacceptable visual impact, would not exacerbate risk of flooding in the vicinity, would not result in a risk of pollution, would not be prejudicial to public health, would be acceptable in terms of traffic safety and convenience, and would not have detrimental environmental impacts," they concluded.

The centre, which will be housed on a 197-hectare site near Athenry owned by State forestry company Coillte, will be comprised of large halls with an uninterrupted electricity supply which store data from smartphones, tablets and computers including images, video and documents.

Commenting on the landmark decision, local TD Ciaran Cannon suggested that Apple's decision to set up in Galway may act as a catalyst for other leading corporations.

"It is significant in terms of what it says to the world," he said.

"This is a development that needs high quality broadband, high quality power supply and this local economy has shown it can deliver." he added.

"It’s a very strong endorsement for the whole region and this is the beginning of what I hope will be a very significant ICT cluster."

According to the Irish Independent, 300 people are set to be employed during construction, while 150 will secure positions following the centre's establishment.

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Ever order fast food and sit there waiting for it to arrive thinking it just isn't fast enough?

Well it looks like that feeling could soon be a thing of the past as the world's first 3D pizza printer is on the way and it is set to change everything.

According to Fast Casual, the people who invented NASA's first 3D food printing robot Beehex have developed a pizza printing prototype which can create oven-ready pizzas in any shape imaginable in less than four minutes.

And as if that isn't enough, Beehex is also working on a 3D food printing kiosk which can create and bake one pizza pie ever 60 seconds – that's a lot of pizza.

These pizza gods have left chef Pasquale Cozzolino in charge of sourcing the right base, sauce and cheese for the printer and it seems he's going all out on finding the very best ingredients for the project by importing tomatoes from Mount Vesuvius and mozzarella from Italian cows.

Pasquale – who owns restaurants in New York and Atlanta – also intends to use 80-year-old yeast for the dough – fancy!

Because the pizzas will be ready within minutes and should be available to order by app, this new venture could change how we eat pizza forever.

Oh the possibilities…

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We’d be the first to admit that we’d be lost without our phones, but between the scaldy battery life and the constant messages which insist we’re out of storage, that thing can REALLY get on our last nerve.

Thankfully, however, it looks like the good folk at Apple have finally wised-up and realised most of us would rather hang on to cherished snaps than scroll through the Stocks app. (Who'd have thought it?!)

Yep, those whizzkids over in the States are now allowing us to delete the default apps we never use!

But instead of taking credit for this welcome move at Apple’s Worldwide Development Conference yesterday, the tech giant waited until savvy Apple-lovers noticed that the default apps could now be purchased on the App store.

That’s right, ladies, if you can purchase them on the App store that means you can delete them too!

Oh, and if that wasn’t enough good news, those tech superstars have also unveiled iOS10 which, among other things, offers users even more flexibility when it comes to its Messaging service.

From instantly replacing words with emojis to sending handwritten notes, this is the kind of tech wizardry we can definitely get on board with.

Check this out.

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