This month on TechdeckTalks we are talking to Roman Tyden, a Ukrainian IT professional living and working in the Ukrainian capital of Kyiv.

Roman has been working in the IT industry for nearly 20 years. He began his career as a Systems Administrator after studying at KROK University and IT Step Academy in Kyiv. Since then, he has gone on to work as a remote support engineer; Virtulisation engineer, Freelance Field Support Engineer and more recently, as a Site Infrastructure Manager.

Read more below and find out Roman’s first-hand experiences of working in IT during the ongoing war and how the invasion is impacting the industry as a whole

Many IT Professionals are now defending the Country

The Ukraine has always had a reputation for being a prominent force in the IT industry, we have a lot of talent here, with our major tech hubs being in Kyiv, Lviv, Dnipro and Odesa. The country’s strong tech background is recognised around the world. Recently, whilst volunteering in Bucha and Gostomel, two small towns near Kyiv totally destroyed by the Russian offensive, an Australian IT colleague commented, “…eight of ten Ukrainians must be from an IT background.”

At the end of 2021, a survey revealed that around 285,000 people worked in IT and by June 2022, this had dropped by 60,000. The war restricts all men aged 18-60 from leaving the country. Many IT professionals have now been enlisted to the territorial defence and the armed forces or they have relocated abroad.

Companies are relocating their IT workforce to other countries

For tech companies, people are their greatest asset, so it is no wonder that they are encouraging workers to relocate abroad. Around 50,000 – 57,000 IT professionals are known to have moved to work abroad since February 2022. However, a vast majority of people, like myself want to stay here in the Ukraine, no matter what.

The war has bought uncertainty around housing and jobs, so understandably many younger families are looking to relocate abroad for more stability but ultimately, we want to remain in our own country.

Ukrainian refugees, including those with a wealth of IT experience are actively seeking employment, even if it is temporary, and not just waiting for help from the authorities in the host countries where they have been granted refuge.

Business activities are almost fully resumed

It isn’t all negative though, according to the recent IT Research Resilience survey, 85% of companies have reported that, as of May 2022 they have managed to resume their business activities fully or almost completely. 63% noted a positive financial result, with 13% stating an increase in income by 25-50%.

There is no doubt that when Ukraine wins, and in the years to follow, the country will be very attractive to entrepreneurs and investors, especially with our wealth of IT experience and strengths in the industry.

From a Personal Perspective

The conflict continues to have a huge impact on my career and personal life. My family are currently living in Poland, and I’ve remained here in the Ukraine to work and support them the best I can. The company I work for have relocated many of the workforce but only the women, so most of the local offices here are all empty.

The separation from my family is by far the hardest thing to deal with – I haven’t seen my one-year-old daughter for 6 months.

For further information on the impact of the war on the IT industry in Ukraine, please visit: https://itcluster.lviv.ua/projects/it-research/

If you would like to get in touch with Roman, please get in contact at info@techdeck.io.

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This month on TechdeckTalks, we hear from Ezequias Serra about his experience of working as an IT freelancer across Europe.

Ezequias has been working as a freelancer, specifically in IT field infrastructure for over 8 years. During that time, he has undertaken tasks all over Europe including, work at the European Parliament, Microsoft and Warner Bros, to name a few.

Read more about his first-hand experiences and his thoughts around the benefits of being an IT freelancer.

The Benefits of Being an IT Freelancer

I became an IT freelancer in 2014 and haven’t looked back since then. For me, being employed was becoming boring and quite static. I found that I was working on very similar tasks without much satisfaction, reward, or professional development. Freelancing opened up so many more possibilities for me. If you are thinking of making the switch to freelancing, here’s why I think you won’t regret it!

Variety

 In IT freelancing, variety really is the spice of life! One day, I can be working in a datacentre for a major bank, onsite in a retail store, or performing installations in a government building.

The best thing about the vast variety of jobs in freelancing is the valuable hands-on experience I am gaining every day. My resume is constantly being added to and I thrive on the different challenges of every task.

In addition to this, I am constantly meeting new people, networking, and building up my professional contacts.

Flexibility

 Being your own boss is such a plus point of freelancing. You make your own schedule. If you would like an afternoon to visit family – you can do it. If you want to go to the gym in the daytime, it’s your choice! You take on the tasks when and where you want to.

No more applying for holiday or explaining to a supervisor why you want the time off. Of course, if you don’t work, you don’t get paid but ultimately it is up to you.

Professional Development

 IT freelancing is a superb way of progressing professionally in your specialist field. For those who are just starting out, it gives the opportunity to build your resume quickly into a full-blown portfolio.

You are gaining the best possible hands-on experience by taking on a variety of tasks in different working environments. This proves you are adaptable and can learn fast under pressure.

The diversity of the challenges will allow you to accumulate a lot of experience in a short period of time.

An Example

 Recently, I worked onsite for a major betting site building a network from scratch. There were multiple devices to be set up in 5 48RU racks and puffs. It took eight long days until I could see everything come to life and work properly. The satisfaction when everything came together filled me with a great feeling of accomplishment and more than that, the customer was delighted with the outcome.

In Summary

 As an IT freelancer you will:

IT freelancing is definitely for the individual that loves to try something new every day and who is open to new challenges at any moment.

If you are thinking about switching your career to being a freelancer and have any questions for Ezequias, please get in contact at info@techdeck.io.

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We are in a constant state of change, scientists call it entropy, teenagers call it acne and IT professionals call it life.

When you’re an IT professional there’s no standing still, there’s always the next upgrade, the next software patch, the next PC, the next server. Some of this is driven by corporations wanting to make money selling their latest version of your client’s favourite software. Some is due to the never-ending battle against viruses and vulnerabilities. Some of it is down to end-of-life hardware that must be replaced with something shiny and new (always my favourite).

On the face of it these changes might appear quite different and at the detail level they can be but at the higher level or the process level they are all the same. Once you understand the change management process you can apply it to any change.

The adage of “If it isn’t broken don’t’ mess with” just doesn’t work in our technology packed workplaces. However, neither does the risk of the “I’ll just make a quick change” mentality.

So, when it comes to change it the world of IT, which are you… optimist or pessimist?

The Optimist

Optimist sounds like the right answer, very positive, glass half full, that must be right. Or is it? A true optimist will be in the “I’m sure it will be okay” camp or will anticipate success without the proper planning. “I don’t need to plan the change, I did it before and it worked fine”. An optimist may get away with this when carrying out similar repetitive changes, but this complacency and lack of practice planning changes can cause poor or wrong planning when changes to different systems or hardware are required.

Do you want to be the person who doesn’t have a change plan, test plan or backout plan when something goes wrong?

The Pessimist

Pessimist, this doesn’t sound like something I want to be called. Maybe you should think again. Your typical pessimist will worry about every possible issue and will have all the plans to try to mitigate them. The change plan will be a work of art covering every eventuality, the test plan will involve half the employees in the business and the backout plan will almost be time travel. Maybe being a pessimist isn’t so bad after all. Hold that thought, there are one or two problems. Time, your pessimist will spend hours and hours creating change plans because they worry about every detail. This can be called analysis paralysis where over analysing the details takes too much time and possibly hinders completion. This leads me on to the pessimist’s worst attributes.

The pessimistic fear of what could go wrong causes low productivity and ultimately an avoidance of starting and completing changes.

What’s the answer then? Perhaps there’s a third option.

The Super Hybird IT Professional

You want to be an amalgamation of both the optimist and the pessimist. To have the awareness of the risks and challenges in a change but the ability to only focus on mitigating the ones with a high likelihood of occurring or having a high impact. To apply the appropriate level of the change management process given the situation. To use the plan and stick to it during the change. To be successful at IT change management.

And what shall we call this superior hybrid IT professional?… I know… a realist.

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Techdeck are proud to announce our upcoming partnership with Computer Aid, a non-profit organisation with a mission to empower the developing world by providing access to education through IT, implementing technology and supporting environmentally responsible solutions.

With the COP26 climate change conference drawing to a close on the 12th November, sustainability is very much at the forefront of everyone’s minds. Companies large and small are under more pressure than ever to reduce their carbon footprint and get on the path to net zero emissions, including companies across the IT industry.

With that in mind, our partnership with Computer Aid is set to develop over the next 12 months and become a long-term commitment. All future users of our platform, both businesses and IT professionals alike, will be able to support global Green IT initiatives by just using our online service. In the future, this will mean direct donations from each transaction on the Techdeck platform will go directly to Computer Aid.

What is Green IT?

The term Green IT has been around since the US Environment Agency launched ‘Energy Star’, a labelling program used to promote and recognise the energy efficiency of equipment in 1992. It is the practice of environmentally sustainable computing which aims to lessen the harmful impact of all IT operations on the environment. From the design and manufacturing through to the operating and disposal of equipment in an environmentally friendly way, the practice of Green IT is now more imperative than ever.

About Computer Aid

 Since 1997 Computer Aid has helped over 14.5 million people worldwide by providing over 260,000 computers in over 100 countries, enabling over 1 billion hours of learning.

How?

A large part of what Computer Aid do is around the ethical and secure disposal of IT equipment. They work with companies across the UK and Europe to reuse their computers and other electronic devices. The equipment is given a second life whilst remaining compliant with GDPR, WEEE and hazardous waste regulations.

Many charitable organisations, individuals and communities have benefitted from Computer Aid’s repurposed IT equipment across the world. Here’s a snapshot of what they have achieved:

Global Projects:

Training:

Equipment supplied:

IT Disposal/Environmental:

According to a recent UN report, electronic waste or e-waste is one of the fastest growing waste streams in the world. 50 million tonnes of e-waste are created every year, with that looking likely to more than double by 2050 to a staggering 110 million tonnes.

Some IT Disposal companies often don’t refurb the equipment, instead they strip it down for precious metals. The Computer Aid Service is different, they only recycle equipment when it can no longer be used with 0% going to landfill.

To learn more about Computer Aid and how you can donate, read more here.

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Ever thought about building your own computer?

In the last few decades, the daily use of computers has become almost ubiquitous among the population for both work and commercial purposes. While desktops are amazing pieces of technology; compact, versatile, and capable of enriching our lives in many ways, they can be quite expensive. The optimal PCs, such as those designated for gaming and those that have the most efficient components cost around £2.5K. General purpose desktops range from £850 to £1550. Even the most basic, barebones PC can cost around £350, and this isn’t even taking into account peripheral devices such as mice and monitors.

Needless to say, you might want to look for a less expensive alternative. By assembling a computer yourself, you can save about a third of the money you would have spent on going to the usual retailers. For high end PCs, the amount of money you save could therefore be nearly £1K.

Whether you want to save money, upgrade some components or just want to prove that you’re tech-savvy, this guide will teach you how to build your own fully functional PC. You can then budget your own components and build the desktop to your liking.

Getting Set Up

First, let’s list all the parts of a computer and why you’ll need them, as well as the tools you’ll need to fit them with. Be careful when buying parts, make sure that they are functional and compatible with each other. If finding compatible parts is difficult, or you don’t have the time to shop for each individual part, you can purchase a barebones kit. These kits contain the fundamental parts of the computer, and ones which are compatible with each other.

All the Components You Need

All the Tools You Need

Constructing the Computer

By now you will have every component and tool you’ll need to hand, and you can start assembling the computer. Here’s a diagram of what most PC interiors look like, so you know where to put everything.

https://hawkpointtechnologies.com/computer-components/

  1. Remove the side panels of the computer case.
  1. Remove the drive bay cover so as to be able to install the hard and optical drives.
  1. Attach the grounding strap to your wrist and plug into the computer case to prevent static from damaging the computer components.
  1. Fit and screw the motherboard into the computer case.
  1. Fit and screw the hard drive into a drive bay with the corresponding size.
  1. Fit and screw the optical drive into a drive bay with the corresponding size.
  1. Install the CPU into the large, square shaped socket on the motherboard.
  1. Install the RAM into the two long sockets in the motherboard.
  1. Apply some heat sink glue to the CPU and attach the cooling fan.
  1. Plug the cooling fan’s power cable into the motherboard.
  1. Fit and screw the case fan on the square panel at the back of the computer case.
  1. Fit and screw in the PSU in the large space left in the case.
  1. Connect the cables so that all components are connected to the PSU.
  1. Reconstruct the case.
  1. Plug any peripherals (like mice and monitors) into the PC and power it on.
Conclusion

So hopefully you’ve built the computer and it’s fully functional; fantastic! It’s not as hard as it looks, right? You can now feel satisfied that you’re a true techie and saved yourself some money in the process – great stuff!

Sources:

  1. Cost of a Desktop Computer – Electronics Prices and Recommendations – CostHelper
  2. How Much Does It Cost To Build A Gaming PC In 2021? (costaide.com)
  3. https://hawkpointtechnologies.com/computer-components/ 
  4. How to Assemble a Basic Desktop PC : 15 Steps – Instructables

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Getting certified in the IT industry will no doubt add credibility to your resume. At all levels, but especially entry level, gaining the relevant certifications is a great way to stand out and potentially earn more money.

A survey by the Dice + Linux Foundation states that 80% of IT professionals feel networking certifications are helpful. With a huge 47% of HR Managers more likely to hire someone who is network certified – it makes sense to invest the time and money into gaining the right qualifications.

With so many different networking accreditations available, it can be a challenge to know where to start. With that in mind, we have compiled seven of the most popular certifications in the field and what you can expect from each one.

1. CCNA (Cisco Certified Network Associate)

This is an entry level certification, ideal for people looking to get into networking roles. There are no formal prerequisites, however, Cisco suggests candidates have the following experience before taking the exam:

These are the areas you can expect to cover in the exam:

The CCNA certification is valid for three years.

You can read more about CCNA here.

2. CCNP (Cisco Certified Network Professional)

The CCNP is a more advanced qualification than the CCNA and requires a more in depth understanding of WANs and LANs. The course covers many different areas, including:

There is a core exam,` and one major concentration exam from one of the following subjects:

Cisco suggests that you have already gained the CCNA certification before embarking on the CCNP but it isn’t a mandatory prerequisite.

The CCNP certification will suit IT professionals that want to further their career and pursue the following roles:

CCNP is also valid for three years.

You can read more about CCNP here.

3. CCIE (Cisco Certified Internetwork Expert)

CCIE is a series of technical certifications for senior networking professionals who design, build, implement, maintain, and troubleshoot complex enterprise networking infrastructures.

CCIE has 6 tracks that you can choose to study:

This certification is the highest level that CISCO provides and is considered to be one of the most prestigious in the networking field. Here are some job roles you may decide to pursue once you have completed the CCIE:

The CCIE certification is valid for two years.

You can read more about CCIE here.

4. CompTIA A+

The Computing Technology Industry Association (CompTIA) is a vendor-neutral, independent source of information on cybersecurity, education, training, and certification of the global tech workforce.

The CompTIA A+ certification is ideal for people looking to get into entry level networking. It is aimed at professionals who have 9 to 12 months of hands-on experience in the lab or field and looking to get into the following roles:

It consists of two main exams covering these topics:

  1. Networking technology, mobile devices, virtulisation, cloud computing, hardware, and network troubleshooting.
  2. Operating system installations and configuration, improving security and troubleshooting software.

The CompTIA A+ is valid for three years.

Learn more about CompTIA A+ here.

5. CompTIA Network +

This certification validates the knowledge and skills needed to troubleshoot, configure, and manage wired and wireless networks. It also certifies a level of understanding around emerging technologies, including cloud and virtualisation.

CompTIA Network+ prepares candidates for the following job roles:

The CompTIA Network + is valid for three years.

Learn more about CompTIA Network+ here.

 6. AWS Certified Solutions Architect

The AWS Certified Solutions Architect – Associate examination is intended for individuals who perform a solutions architect role and have one or more years of hands-on experience designing available, cost-efficient, fault-tolerant, and scalable distributed systems on AWS.

You will learn:

AWS recommend you have at least 12 months experience in designing systems on AWS before sitting the exam. The certification is valid for three years.

Get more information on AWS Certified Solutions Architect here.

7. AWS Certified Advanced Networking – Speciality

The AWS Advanced Networking certification is designed for professionals who already perform complex networking tasks with AWS and is not an entry level qualification. It is designed to validate a candidate’s skills and experience in connection with performing complex networking tasks on AWS and hybrid IT networking architecture at scale, including the below:

AWS recommends that candidates for this particular certification already hold an Associate level one, for example, AWS Certified Solutions Architect – Associate. Also, these skills are advantageous:

Again, this certification is valid for three years.

Get more information about AWS Certified Advanced Networking – Speciality here.

There are many more certifications out there. The ones we have outlined above give an overview of what some of the most popular networking certifications entail and what you can expect from each one. Which certification you choose to pursue will, of course, be based on your end goal and where you are currently at in your IT career.

Sources:

https://www.comptia.org/certifications/a

https://www.cisco.com/c/en/us/training-events/training-certifications/certifications/expert.html

https://www.newhorizons.com/article/how-to-become-a-network-engineer

https://www.worldwidelearn.com/guide-to/technology/computer-networking-major/

https://www.quickstart.com/blog/what-is-ccna-and-ccnp-in-networking/

https://www.simplilearn.com/cisco-certifications-ccna-vs-ccnp-rar408-article

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Source, Hire And Manage With Ease

There is no doubt that technological advancement has opened up the world of freelancing in recent years. Communication tools and methods mean we are more connected than ever. This ability to communicate with anyone, at anytime, anywhere around the world means it is much easier to manage a distributed workforce, contractors and remote freelancers.

The 2020 Intuit Report highlights that, ‘The trend of hiring contingent workers will continue to accelerate, with more than 80% of large corporations planning to sustainably increase their use of a flexible workforce.’

Information Technology Outsourcing (ITO) is nothing new, according to a recent publication by Statista, the global market size of IT outsourced services is 92.5bn USD and ITO contract value worldwide is 66.5bn USD. For many large corporations, it is far more logical to outsource the whole of their IT business function to a service provider.

But with the rise of IT freelancing, it is now possible for companies of any size to source, hire, manage and coordinate individual freelancers or teams – here are 5 reasons why hiring an IT freelancer could be right for your business.

1. Direct access to a wide talent pool

When hiring for a full-time position, companies are limited to finding the exact skill set in their local area. By hiring a freelancer, they can cast the net wider – even globally depending on the nature of the work. Access to a platform such as techdeck.io that is purely dedicated to the IT industry, allows companies to connect with trusted talent around the world.

2. Flexible, quick and simple

 If a company is looking to fill a temporary skills gap for a project, going the freelance route is quick and easy. A flexible workforce that can be hired 24/7 means companies can remain agile.

3. High quality work with defined deliverables

 It is in a freelancer’s best interest to do an exceptional job. Hiring a freelancer often means you get an experienced professional that can give a project their full attention. By having a dedicated resource, you can get the work done efficiently, to a high standard, in a time frame that suits your company.

4. Affordable costs

 As opposed to hiring a full-time resource, engaging with a freelancer means you don’t need to think about overheads, such as a workspace, benefits or any equipment. You can manage budgets more effectively by paying a fixed rate cost for the work or agreeing an hourly rate with an agreed Scope of Works.

5. Risk Reduction

Hiring a freelancer for a project or ad hoc job means you can scope out a contract with key deliverables before any payment is made. You don’t have to think about training an employee, investing time and money in the process only to potentially lose on that investment if they decide to leave.

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The Mind of the Machine

Since the start of the modern era, more and more of our daily lives are intertwined with technology. Technology and the devices derived from it are wondrous – labour machinery can display feats of incredible strength, dexterity and stamina that would require an immense amount of manpower to match. Computers can generate images in a fraction of a second, so finely detailed that would take months to recreate by hand. Calculators can perform a mathematic operation so quickly that not even the most mentally swift mathematician could hope to match its speed. But this is the ‘muscle’ of the system, and muscle needs a mind to direct it. All the aforementioned devices require programming to perform. So, as someone who is looking to get into programming, someone who wants to create the ‘mind’ of a machine, where do you start?

A Preferable Platform

Like how there are many different languages that we can speak, there are many different programming languages that we can code in. Some programming languages are old, some new, some tricky and some more simplistic. Now, if you’re a beginner programmer, it is best to start with a simple programming language, learn to type it fluently, and then move onto something more difficult once you’ve got to grips with it. An ideal programming language for a newcomer would:

Many beginner programmes start with Python. Python is a text based programming language that contains all of the preceding features – it has a handful of centralised keywords that are all self explanatory, and it has a sequential format, meaning that the code is executed in an orderly fashion. It also has an expansive IDE (Integrated Development Environment) which includes utilities like colour coding different keywords and highlighting errors in the code. All of this makes Python very easy to use and become accustomed to. You can download Python by going to https://www.python.org/downloads

The Law of the Language

So you’ve got your programming platform up and running, Python or otherwise. Similarly to how spoken languages have grammatical rules surrounding them, programming languages have their own structure that needs to be followed for your code to work. Here’s an outline of some of the fundamental principles that you need to adhere to in order to create a program:

Keywords must be case sensitive.

Keywords are the command words that the programming language operates with. Because of how computers process upper and lower case letters, your keywords need to be case sensitive for the computer to recognise them as keywords.

The syntax of each keyword must be followed.

What this means is, that each keyword has its own parameters for how it operates, and needs these parameters to be met to function. For example, the PRINT keyword must come before what it is printing, not after it.

BIDMAS.

It’s not linked only to Maths. When performing calculations, the computer considers BIDMAS. Remember to use parenthesis when necessary.

Spacing.

When branching commands are used, such as the IF and WHILE keywords, the code to run while these conditions are met must be spaced correctly. For example:

IF Animal == “Cat” :

PRINT “Meow”

See how the PRINT is spaced from the IF statement, the program now knows to print “Meow” only if the animal is a cat.

There will undoubtedly be other syntax rules that you will have to follow, and most will be specific to the programming language that you are using, such as how most grammatical rules of a language are specific to that language. The ones outlined are the most universal rules, and will likely be the only ones you will need to follow to make your first program.

Put Programming into Practice

So now you have a platform to program on, and the basic rules you need to follow to make a working program. Now it’s time to try and make such a program! Remember to start small, before leaping into things you’re unfamiliar with, you need to firmly grasp the fundamentals before you start making webpages and computer games. Here are a few programs that you can start with:

A program that prints “Hello World”.

This is widely regarded as the ‘staple first program’ of a programmer. It requires you to implement a single print command that outputs the message.

A program that takes two numbers and outputs the sum of them.

This will require two inputs, and then an output that is equal to the sum of the inputs. Remember that print commands can output the result of a calculation!

A program with a loop that increments by one for each cycle.

This will require a looping command of some sort. You could set a variable equal to 0 at the start of the program and have it increase by one for each loop.

The Prospects of Programming

Hopefully you’ve managed to get those three examples working – good work! But you may be wondering “Why bother with this? What good will it do me, it’s a far cry from making my dream computer game or programming my own android.” And you’re right, it is. And it’ll be a long haul to build up your proficiency with programming to do those kinds of things, but it will certainly be worth it. We are in the midst of a digital age, and digital products are, and will stay, in high demand. In a nutshell, the programming industry is an extremely bountiful one.

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Technology’s Mirage

We’ve all watched film series like Star Wars and Marvel, where we see ingenious devices projecting and refracting light such that it forms a three-dimensional image – a hologram.

Holograms are vastly regarded to be a thing of the future, and they are presented to be able to convey a message or image much more effectively than modern means, but people forget that the first hologram was invented in 1848, by a Hungarian scientist called Dennis Gabor. Holograms are not as advanced as they seem – you can make a hologram using an old CD case. Therefore, it is definitely possible for holograms to become commonplace in such a revolutionising world. Let’s look at how they might be used in the workplace:

Communication

We can all imagine a little, blue, partially translucent soldier giving a message about how the rebels have taken the galactic outpost, but how else can we use holograms to communicate? Well, it seems that holographic televisions are already well underway, as five years prior, the BBC created a holographic television to model what might be commonplace in every household in the near future. The television is a thin, clear screen with a projector underneath. Holograms are projected onto the screen, partially translucent and without any background imagery.

It has also been discovered that Samsung has registered a patent around this time about the development of a similar model. DVEHolographics, a company in California, has successfully conducted the first Zoom meeting using these models. They have also established what is likely the first of many holographic meeting studios, where companies can rent a room full of these monitors to conduct a holographic business meeting.

Looking towards the near future, there is great potential in the Microsoft Mesh project. It operates using 3D headsets that can project holograms into the surrounding area. These holograms are shown to accurately model the facial, bodily and gestural features of both the user and any avatar they may wish to use to retain their anonymity. The holographs can also represent an object or place, such as the structure of a car or the trajectory of a plane. The headset is also compatible with messaging apps like Microsoft teams and Zoom, where it projects a holographic screen similar to the aforementioned holographic TV model to host the meeting. So it seems that we will not have to imagine very hard, the gulf between movie fiction and reality.

Presentation

One of the main uses for a three dimensional projection is how it can present a more captivating image than a monitor or whiteboard can – think how much more immersive it would be to model a building in three dimensions rather than two! This is the exact purpose of the Snoezelen House in Denmark, founded in 1987, which uses holograms to model therapeutic rooms for the severely disabled. Since then, this concept of architecture has also been adopted by Euclideon, who produced a holographic table – a table that creates a holographic image of cities, vehicles and other large structures. And, as this table is already fully functional, it needs only to be mass produced for every office firm to have one. As mentioned earlier, the ongoing Microsoft Mesh project will also be able to create such images, but will not be confined to one area. The concept of holographic presentation is about to become worldwide reality.

Advertisement

Stemming from the idea of a hologram being more immersive than a picture, we can think about how holograms might be used for advertising. Imagine walking into a supermarket and seeing a hologram presenting how the supermarket sources their wine, or imagine walking on the high street and seeing a giant, overhead projection advertising a music concert. Surprisingly, devices that can project a holographic logo are already being marketed, especially in China. These devices take an image from another device and project that image above the device. They are small enough to be able to be placed anywhere, and can function using WIFI or a cable connection.

Brands like Adidas and Coca Cola are starting to use holographic marketing, to great effect, with the latter reporting a 12% increase in sales in Mexico. It is therefore likely that other businesses will follow suit, and start to use their own forms of holographic marketing, big or small.

Data Storage

If we are to envision the possibilities of holographic technology, we must think about actually storing the hologram in question. A functional holographic data storage has already been established – instead of data being stored using magnets or lasers on the surface of the medium, holographic storage would store data throughout the medium itself – the electrons in a single laser would be split so as to form light and dark fringes that would project the desired hologram. The first instance of holographic storage was first produced in 1975 by Hitachi – the device stored light, sheen and sound information holographically. Since 2009, a holographic data storage has been developed which will function similarly to Blu – Ray. Now that’s all well and good that these holograms have been made a reality, but are they efficient enough to hold a large enough amount of data in a small enough space? Can data be read from and written to holographic memory at a reasonable rate? Is this holographic data store fragile and easily corrupted? Thankfully, a 10 mm holographic disc can hold up to 1 terabyte of data and it is estimated that holographic storage has a read/write speed of sub 0.2 seconds. The file itself will remain pristine for at least 50 years. You could therefore see a cabinet chock full of these discs, with important statistical data, being slotted and projected in an instant.

The Projected Future of Holograms

In conclusion, holographic technology is versatile and efficient. It has already been developed for quite some time, the better part of a century, such that it is already being freely marketed in some companies, and that large corporations are already starting to use it for advertising purposes. It goes without saying then, that holographic technology will inevitably be commonplace in businesses and the workplace in the near future.

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