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publié le 16 octobre 2017 Beauté › Parfum

The initial stages were pretty hairy. Our experiences with e.quinox had given us some experience but we were still effectively building a business on a series of assumptions -- that people wanted electricity; that people would want to become franchisees; and that they would want electrical appliances. There were no comparable companies to reference in our plans, and without any customers or many products, there was no way of gaging consumer opinion or gaining feedback.We followed our gut instinct and just did it. We had strong ideas about how we wanted the product to look and operate; we wanted it to have minimal wiring making it as user-friendly as possible, but apart from that the only way to move forward was to take the product from the lab to the field. Although this initial risk paid off, a stable and long-term business plan cannot be sustained by hunches alone. Now that we have information available, we have become extremely data-driven as a company. This allows us to adjust our products in accordance to the changing demands of our markets.What is the best piece of advice anyone has ever given you? Thinking too much can be counter-productive; sometimes failure in itself is a result.

Which business person do you most admire and why?The average African farmer. It sounds strange but these people are the most entrepreneurial people we come across. They're everything all at once -- agriculturalists, businessmen, investors, parents. Often they've been brought up in environments that are inhospitable for one reason or another and in surviving they've gained incredible tenacity. If something's impossible then it's only because no one's found a solution to it, and this is an attitude we always hope to share.BBOXX has the potential to transform the face of electrical supply across the developing world for a brighter, more sustainable future. The biggest barrier to this and the company's future success is the cost for end consumers. Until now, we have sold solar energy products to customers upfront, but this year we will be launching solar energy as a pay-monthly service to consumers in Kenya and Uganda for the first time with some exciting new technology to help us remotely monitor our products and provide a complete service to the end customer. We plan to extend this to six further markets by the end of 2014. This could potentially remove all barriers, revolutionising these energy markets. By 2020 we hope to provide energy to more than 20 million people.[i]This article was taken from [i]The WIRED World in 2016 -- our fourth annual trends report, a standalone magazine in which our network of expert writers and influencers predicts what's coming next. Be the first to read WIRED's articles in print before they're posted online, and get your hands on loads of additional content by subscribing online.[/i][/i]

By 2020, a European country's electricity supply will run, for one week, on nothing but renewable energy. In 2016, several significant milestones will take place to make this happen.Consider energy production, one of our biggest challenges. A growing population, more electronics and climate change driving a need to leave fossil fuels behind means that we'll have to generate more and more electricity, using more and more renewable methods. There are two primary ways to do this in Europe: wind power and solar power.Until this decade, though, both of these methods have been less successful than we'd hoped. Solar panels, although improving, aren't very efficient -- which is bad in a cloudy continent such as Europe -- and wind turbines tend to split popular opinion right down the middle. Some consider them awesomely beautiful, whereas others see them as a blight, a danger to wildlife and a con. General public opinion would prefer to have a polluting coal-fired power station somewhere over the horizon than windmills in plain view. And no one wants to use less power.You might think that this is social problem, one of attitude change rather than technology. But Denmark found a solution by putting its wind farms offshore for stronger winds and fewer objections. The Danes now dominate the industry. No surprise, then, that during 2014, just under 40 percent of all Denmark's electricity was generated from wind power. There were even some days when the country's entire electricity demand was sated by offshore turbines. From 24 hours at a time now, to a week at a time in a few years, seems entirely possible.

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But those peak events do point out a disadvantage with wind power: its variability. Just as solar doesn't work at night, the wind doesn't always blow. We'll need to have a mix of generating technologies to get us through the dark and still times. Which leads us to the second big idea: by 2050, Denmark plans on having all of its energy needs -- vehicles and factories included -- delivered by renewable sources.So how to do this? The answer is probably already in your pocket: batteries. In 2014, the race began to bring new, giant, household-sized battery technology to the market. At the end of April 2015, Tesla introduced the Powerwall: a massive battery you can mount on the wall of your home, hook up to solar panels to charge during the day and use to power your home the whole time. This load shifting concept, and the idea of using it to disconnect entirely from the grid, has caught on: a month after launch, Tesla had reportedly more than $800 million (£500m) of pre-orders.

Meanwhile, by the end of 2016, Facebook's new data centre will open in Fort Worth, Texas. That's a very warm city to be building such a facility -- data centres need to be kept cold -- but Facebook says that it's, ahem, cool with the plan. The whole building, servers and routers and everything, will be powered solely from the accompanying 200MW wind farm it is building next door. What's more, it is giving the plans away, so other builders of large energy-intensive data centres can do the same thing. The usual thinking about energy production is being, yes, blown away.New details of the wireless headset were made public by Microsoft's Bruce Harris, a technical evangelist within the company.Harris said the HoloLens, which is due to the shipped to developers in the first quarter of 2016, was "totally wireless" and would not have any wired options. Any device that supports Wi-Fi or Bluetooth will also be able to connect to the headset. Harris was speaking at an event in Tel Aviv, Petri reported.A downside of the headset running without a tethered mode is that its battery life will suffer. At best the battery will last for five and a half hours, which could drop below 2.5 hours when doing more complex tasks.Harris also answered questions about the HoloLens' field of vision. He said wearing the headset was like having a 15 inch monitor close to your face.

The HoloLens is Microsoft's entry to the burgeoning virtual reality market. But like Oculus Rift, HTC Vive and PlayStation VR, the HoloLens used augmented rather than virtual reality. Promotional videos from the company show HoloLens being used to view emails and documents on walls that can be worked on while the user is completing other tasks.Astronauts on the International Space Station could be some of the first to benefit from the technology. Two headsets were sent to the orbiting science lab in December, having originally being part of a failed resupply mission in June, and will be used to deliver instructions to astronauts and provide real-time feedback.Theoretically astronauts could be repairing parts of the space station and have the instructions of what tools and what actions they need to complete appear instantaneously -- a digital instruction manual of sorts. There is also gaming potential for the augmented reality tech, with HoloLens already being used to stream Halo from an Xbox One.Sony has moved away from its ‘Z Series’ moniker for its next flagship smartphone and lifted the lid off a fresh major handset, the Sony Xperia XZ.Unveiled at the IFA conference in Berlin, Sony's latest handset brings a host of new improvements while keeping some of the best bits of its predecessor, the Sony Xperia Z5, such as a IP65/IP68 dust-tight, waterproof design.

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The flagship smartphones was released alongside a whole host of new Sony products including the MDR-100X noise-cancelling wireless headphones and the tiny FDR-X3000R action cam. The company also revealed its in-ear personal assistant, the Xperia Ear will be released this November and that its bringing back a digital-only Walkman as part of its new Signature Series of audiophile-grade amplifiers and headphones.Touting a 5.2in Full HD 1080p display, the Sony Xperia XZ boasts a vibrant screen that uses Bravia technology as seen in the firm’s TV sets.The screen is embedded in a “loop surface” design which Sony says offers a “perfect hand fit" due to its curved edges. WIRED got hands-on with the device and were impressed by how ergonomically pleasing the handset is. Measuring 8.1mm thick, it's slightly fatter than its predecessor, but actually feels smaller and more friendly in the hand due to its curved design.As for weight, the Xperia XZ comes in at 161g, which isn't noticeably heavy or light for a phone of its size. One negative is that the phone does feel slightly cheap in hand, mainly due to its mostly-plastic chassis, which we can't help but compare to the chrome-plated Xperia Z5 Premium released around a year ago.Another design point worth making is that this is also the first Sony device that features the new Type-C USB charging port, making your micro-USB charging cables redundant.

Perhaps the XZ’s most unique feature is its intelligent battery charge function, a software improvement that sees the smartphone learning your charging habits. While left plugged-in, charging overnight for instance, the XZ won’t juice up its 2900mAh battery further than 90 per cent. It will complete the rest of the charge closer to the time it estimates you will begin using it, for example, an hour or so before you wake up, or when your alarm is set. This, Sony said, is to minimise damage to battery cells, so that it lasts longer over time. It works by controlling the liquid current going into cells so that the damage to them is minimised and thus “doubles the battery span life” over time.Sony added that this update is a response to customers feeling upset that wear and tear of their smartphone battery meant they were needing to replace them after just a few years of heavy use. Sony believes this should see its smartphones’ batteries lasting much longer, and as a result, delaying the need for a regular upgrade. Inside the Sony Xperia XZ is a Qualcomm Snapdragon 820 processor, 3GB of RAM and 32GB or 64GB of storage, depending on the model you opt for. It runs Android 6.0 Marshmallow, and while Sony couldn't confirm, it's very likely to be on the list to get the Android 7.0 Nougat update as and when the firm makes it available.In WIRED's quick hands-on tests, the XZ handled everything we threw at it with ease, with apps and widgets on the Android interface popping up instantly, giving us no room for concern in terms of performance.

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