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Tuesday, January 31, 2017

PERSONAL LIFE SPECIAL .........The Only 7 Things You Can Control in Life

The Only 7 Things You Can Control in Life

In my experience, life can be pretty complicated. Although most of us have plenty to manage in our day-to-day lives—jobs, relationships, family, exercise, sleep, you name it—there are really only a few things we truly have control over. I changed my life by identifying these variables and learning how to master them. And I think you can too.

Happiness and success (however you define either one) have a lot to do with each other. In fact, greater happiness has been 
found to lead to greater success. I think both can be achieved with some simple and straightforward habit hacking, or making small tweaks to your routine which, little by little, add up to major changes in how you’re living your life.
We make millions of little decisions all the time, and the result of each one is either net positive, net negative, or neutral. The more net positive decisions we can make (and the fewer net negative ones), the better. Net positive decisions—brushing your teeth before bed, eating healthy meals, and regularly going to the gym—help you feel good and bring you one step closer to your goals despite the effort they entail.
Net negative decisions, such as filling up on food that doesn’t make you feel good, skipping the nightly teeth-brushing, letting that downer friend cramp your style, or forgoing the gym—make it difficult to reach your goals because your decisions don't make you feel good, empowered, or confident. They take more out of you than they give, interfering with your energy levels, sapping your motivation, and clouding your focus.
Let go of all the stuff you can't control and start using your time to master what you can control.
While the healthier choice may seem harder, it pays off bigger. And you’ll be surprised by just how easy these choices can be once you make the effort. By learning how to master the seven things that are within our control, you will start to make more net positive decisions, fewer net negative ones, and find that empowering, positive behaviors become second nature. So let go of all the stuff you can't control and start using your time to master what you can control. Before you know it, you'll be living your best life ever!
1. Your Breath
Most people don't even think about their breathing (I myself used to talk for many seconds at a time and forget to breathe!). Breathing is obviously important, but so is the ability to focus on it. Can you feel your chest expand when you inhale, and get softer when you exhale? Where do you feel the rise and fall most? Breathing is the ultimate hack to relax and slow racing thoughts. As soon as you experience something unpleasant, just take a few deep breaths and focus not on how horrible the situation was, but on your breathing. When you focus on your breath, you can count “one” as you inhale, “two” as you exhale. When you get to 10, start over. I bet you'll start to feel better and more grounded immediately.
2. Your Self-Talk
We all have a voice in our heads. That voice can often be critical and get in the way of our happiness and success. Try to count the times you engage in negative self-talk each day. It may surprise you how often you criticize yourself. If you can learn to recognize this Debbie Downer of an inner voice and replace it with engouraging statements, your attitude will start to change. Try talking to yourself with compassion. For example, instead of telling yourself you’re not good enough, remind yourself that you are worthy of love and attention, or that it’s okay to make mistakes—we all do!
3. Your Gratitude
If you can practice being grateful on a daily basis, your happiness and productivity will increase.  Cultivating gratitude trains us to focus on hope, to remain inspired, and to be optimistic, lending us the courage and resilience to persevere in the face of setbacks (on top of giving us a mood boost that keeps us coasting).
4. Your Body Language
According to social psychologist Amy Cuddy, you can demonstrate power and confidence simply by changing the way you hold your body. For example, adopting a powerful stance—arms on your hips and feet planted wide, causing you to take up more space—increases testosterone and decreases the stress hormone cortisol. The result? This "power posing" will make you feel more confident. Think about this before you meet with a potential client, go to a job interview, or even just before you leave the house.
5. Your Mental and Physical Fitness
I don’t know about you, but I come up with my best ideas while I'm on the elliptical. Exercising is a chance to just listen to my music and think about nothing. It's glorious. You don't have to go to the gym, but we all ought to take 20 minutes out of our days to get up and move. Motion helps free your mind and body to better tap into your creative potential. Walking has literally been found to increase creativity. Getting in some movement will help creativity and also focus.

Giving your brain a workout is as easy as it is important for you to do. Whether you play Sudoku, do crossword puzzles, or read non-fiction books, your brain will feel the difference. You can get a similar benefit from meditation. Just 20 to 30 minutes has been shown to increase focus, reduce stress and anxiety, and even dial down physical pain. 
6. Your Diet
Even though it might taste great, junk food is a net negative. It makes your brain and body slow and sad. Consuming too much sugar has been linked to all kinds of medical conditions (including metabolic syndrome and cardiovascular disease), not to mention mood swings and crashes that kill productivity. Plus, processed foods have been proven to exacerbate, if not cause, chronic diseases like diabetes, obesity, and even breast cancer.  Simple fixes like keeping a bag of carrots or a bowl of fruit handy help us pick up the healthier choice when we're depleted and hungry and reaching for the closest snack. Easy-to-whip-up, convenient-to-carry portable snacks can be delicious and nutritious.
7. Your Sleep
Sleep is critical for focus, concentration, job and academic performance, keeping your appetite under control, and a host of other positive health outcomes. In order to hack sleep, you have to set a routine. I'm asleep by 9 p.m. and I wake up to watch the sun rise. Watching the sun rise is beautiful, and it's a net positive that I’m grateful for. If your brain can't calm down while you're trying to fall asleep, tell yourself, “I'm proud of the work I accomplished today, I'm going to let my brain and body rest now." Or try other trusted get-to-sleep-ASAP methods, including cutting back on alcohol (since people who booze more sleep less). 
3 Tips to Achieve Your Goals
1. Visualize it.
Whatever it is you most want to be doing, you must be able to see yourself doing it. For most of us, the work we do while procrastinating is probably the work we should be doing for the rest of our lives. Practice visualizing this concept with your eyes closed for a few seconds. Where are you working? What's the room like? What's the temperature like? How's the lighting? How do you feel? Are you drinking a cup of coffee or a glass of water? What time of the day is it? The more senses you involve the better. Keep imagining this for yourself in order to increase the likelihood of these visions becoming reality.
2. Believe in it.
You have to believe that you already have everything you need to be successful. Remember: You don't need money to try out an idea. There are plenty of free and low-cost ways to get started with all kinds of projects—social media, blogging, smartphone apps, or fundraising sites, just to name a few. And when it comes to having the courage and can-do spirit to get going, well, that's something you already have in spades.
3. Talk it up.
Talk about what you do everywhere you go. You won't believe the people you stumble upon who are willing to help. Whatever pain you're healing or problem you're solving or project you’re launching, share your knowledge and experiences with everyone who can benefit from them. When you help as many people as you can, those people will connect you to all kinds of resources—everything you need to get started. Just let it happen, and smile as often as possible.

BOOK SPECIAL .... Overall Favorite Books of 2016 (8)

Overall Favorite Books of 2016

“We’ve got to be as clear-headed about human beings as possible, because we are still each other’s only hope,” James Baldwin told Margaret Mead in their terrific forgotten conversation about forgiveness and the difference between guilt and responsibility“To forgive is to assume a larger identity than the person who was first hurt,” philosopher David Whyte echoed half a century later in contemplating anger, forgiveness, and what maturity really means. And yet the dance of anger and forgiveness, performed to the uncontrollable rhythm of trust, is perhaps the most difficult in human life, as well as one of the oldest.
The moral choreography of that dance is what philosopher Martha Nussbaum explores in Anger and Forgiveness: Resentment, Generosity, Justice .
Nussbaum, who has previously examined the intelligence of the emotions and whom I consider the most incisive philosopher of our time, argues that despite anger’s long cultural history of being seen as morally justifiable and as a useful signal that wrongdoing has taken place, it is a normatively faulty response that masks deeper, more difficult emotions and stands in the way of resolving them. Consequently, forgiveness — which Nussbaum defines as “a change of heart on the part of the victim, who gives up anger and resentment in response to the offender’s confession and contrition” — is also warped into a transactional proposition wherein the wrongdoer must earn, through confession and apology, the wronged person’s morally superior grace.
Nussbaum outlines the core characteristics and paradoxes of anger:
Anger is an unusually complex emotion, since it involves both pain and pleasure [because] the prospect of retribution is pleasant… Anger also involves a double reference—to a person or people and to an act… The focus of anger is an act imputed to the target, which is taken to be a wrongful damage.
Injuries may be the focus in grief as well. But whereas grief focuses on the loss or damage itself, and lacks a target (unless it is the lost person, as in “I am grieving for so-and-so”), anger starts with the act that inflicted the damage, seeing it as intentionally inflicted by the target — and then, as a result, one becomes angry, and one’s anger is aimed at the target. Anger, then, requires causal thinking, and some grasp of right and wrong.
Notoriously, however, people sometimes get angry when they are frustrated by inanimate objects, which presumably cannot act wrongfully… In 1988, the Journal of the American Medical Association published an article on “vending machine rage”: fifteen injuries, three of them fatal, as a result of angry men kicking or rocking machines that had taken their money without dispensing the drink. (The fatal injuries were caused by machines falling over on the men and crushing them.)
Beneath this tragicomic response lies a combination of personal insecurity, vulnerability, and what Nussbaum calls status-injury (or what Aristotle called down-ranking) — the perception that the wrongdoer has lowered the social status of the wronged — conspiring to produce a state of exasperating helplessness. Anger, Nussbaum argues, is how we seek to create an illusion of control where we feel none.
She writes:
Anger is not always, but very often, about status-injury. And status-injury has a narcissistic flavor: rather than focusing on the wrongfulness of the act as such, a focus that might lead to concern for wrongful acts of the same type more generally, the status-angry person focuses obsessively on herself and her standing vis-à-vis others.
We are prone to anger to the extent that we feel insecure or lacking control with respect to the aspect of our goals that has been assailed — and to the extent that we expect or desire control. Anger aims at restoring lost control and often achieves at least an illusion of it. To the extent that a culture encourages people to feel vulnerable to affront and down-ranking in a wide variety of situations, it encourages the roots of status-focused anger.
Nowhere is anger more acute, nor more damaging, than in intimate relationships, where the stakes are impossibly high. Because they are so central to our flourishing and because our personal investment in them is at its deepest, the potential for betrayal there is enormous and therefore enormously vulnerable-making. Crucially, Nussbaum argues, intimate relationships involve trust, which is predicated on inevitable vulnerability. She considers what trust actually means: … is different from mere reliance. One may rely on an alarm clock, and to that extent be disappointed if it fails to do its job, but one does not feel deeply vulnerable, or profoundly invaded by the failure. Similarly, one may rely on a dishonest colleague to continue lying and cheating, but this is reason, precisely, not to trust that person; instead, one will try to protect oneself from damage. Trust, by contrast, involves opening oneself to the possibility of betrayal, hence to a very deep form of harm. It means relaxing the self-protective strategies with which we usually go through life, attaching great importance to actions by the other over which one has little control. It means, then, living with a certain degree of helplessness.
Is trust a matter of belief or emotion? Both, in complexly related ways. Trusting someone, one believes that she will keep her commitments, and at the same time one appraises those commitments as very important for one’s own flourishing. But that latter appraisal is a key constituent part of a number of emotions, including hope, fear, and, if things go wrong, deep grief and loss. Trust is probably not identical to those emotions, but under normal circumstances of life it often proves sufficient for them. One also typically has other related emotions toward a person whom one trusts, such as love and concern. Although one typically does not decide to trust in a deliberate way, the willingness to be in someone else’s hands is a kind of choice, since one can certainly live without that type of dependency… Living with trust involves profound vulnerability and some helplessness, which may easily be deflected into anger.


HEALTH FOOD SPECIAL .......5 Detox Foods You've Never Heard Of

5 Detox Foods You've Never Heard Of

Boost your immunity with these unusual detox foods

Nutritionist Shonali Sabherwal suggests that Kombucha, umeboshi plums, Rejuvelac and pressed salads might not be a part of regular detox plan, but they help achieve greater immunity
The prime reason to detox should be to give you plenty of good microorganisms (or good bugs, as we call them). It also helps your gut discharge toxins and bring your pH (acid-alkaline level) to balance, thereby lending to stronger immunity.
Most diet detoxes just focus on raw fruit and vegetable juices. But I take a macrobiotic approach, which is about supplying the body with a cocktail of good bacteria all the time, to rejuvenate intestinal flora and support the inner ecosystem.
Here are the top five foods you will never hear of in a regular detox plan.
1. The umeboshi plum
Pickled umeboshi plums are found mainly in Japan, but are now available in India.
The plum has a powerful alkalising effect on the body, neutralising the acidity in the blood. It gets rid of fatigue, stimulates digestion and promotes the elimination of toxins and the absorption of calcium. The citric acid in umeboshi plums eliminates lactic acid in the body.
2. Rejuvelac
A simple drink made with any grain, such as wholewheat berries, sorghum (jowar), quinoa, or amaranth (rajgeera). The last three are gluten-free. Just sprout the grains, then add a litre of water and let it sit on a shelf, covered with a muslin cloth, for a day or two till the liquid is cloudy. Strain and keep the sprouted grain for the next batch (you can use it three-four times). Refrigerate the liquid, add lime and drink. Or flavour with a decaffeinated tea bag if you can’t handle its taste. This liquid supplies probiotics and enzymes, and breaks down undigested material in the intestines.
3. Kombucha
Referred to as the ‘immortal health elixir’, kombucha is a beverage made with a colony of bacterial SCOBY (symbiotic culture of bacteria and yeast) plus tea and sugar. It is also called the ‘mother.’ The ‘mother’ ferments a batch of tea and sugar, leading to carbonated vinegar. This supplies a huge amount of probiotics and enzymes, which benefit cleansing, detoxification, increased energy, weight loss and improved digestion.
4. Pressed salad
This is a simple preparation with any one vegetable that can be grated or julienned (such as radish, carrots, cabbage, green peppers and cucumber), and rock or sea salt. Here is the recipe:
Grate or julienne the vegetable.
1.Mix the vegetable with sea salt in a large bowl, and gently press and massage the vegetable until it wilts.
2.Place a plate on top of the vegetable and press down with a heavy weight. I usually keep a brick handy, wrapped in a clean cloth.
3.Allow to stand with pressure on top for 45 minutes and let water release from the vegetable.
4.Discard or drink the water. Then rinse the vegetable with fresh water (if it’s too salty for you) and eat as a side dish, usually two tablespoons at a time.
5.Pressed salad will help assimilate your entire meal and give you quick fermentation and good bacteria. You can even save some and have it the next day with another meal. I highly recommend this dish if you want to do a detox.
5. Kanji
Winter is the perfect time for kanji, as it is made with dark red carrots. Or you can use beetroots, which are available all year round. Often referred to as ‘desi wine’, kanji is fermented for three-four days, with water, mustard seeds, black salt and red chilli powder. It has a spicy sour taste, which is perfect for the Indian palate. Kanji will not only supply rich bacteria, but also help with smoother bowel movements. It’s a milder version of the kombucha with an Indian twist.
Shonali Sabherwal  
HT Brunch,January 22, 2017

SUCCESS SPECIAL ......Winner takes it all

 Winner takes it all

Follow these five qualities that successful people have in common that make them interesting and different
United States President Barack Obama lifted the world with his emotional farewell speech. His ad dress to the world for the fi nal time as President made many of his admirers take to Twitter and mourn the end of an eight-year era. Obama has all the personality traits that a person needs in order to motivate others and bring change. Here are five such qualities that interesting people possess.

1 They explore risky territories

History is full of examples of failure of those who take the safe and easy route. The ones who make a name for themselves usually accomplish something despite all odds or embark on unchartered paths. Doing interesting things is always risky. And extraordinary people dare to take risks.

2 They have a great sense of humour

Celebrities and political and business leaders often spice their public meetings and speeches with humour and anecdotes from various events.Having a good sense of humour is beneficial because it helps you look at the reality of life in an optimistic way. This way, you can also influence other people.

3 Their presence and absence is always felt

You know when they are away.
You know it when they are quiet.
These are the kind of people who have a stage presence. It is the mesh of confidence, selfbelief, strong body language and how well they socially interact. These are the people who do the most boring things with style.

4 They have the perseverance to bring change

Perseverance is about staying focused and not losing sight of your goal. You might come across as stubborn, but there is a good chance you will achieve your target if it is logical.Many success stories are about people who were confident about their goals and did not take rejection easily.

5 They know when to let go of the past

Holding on to the past or your mis takes will only slow you down.

Successful people are not anchored by the past. They learn from it fast and move on to a bigger challenge. They don't dwell on hurtful events or situations, which can lead to grudges filled with resentment and vengeance. That is the reason they don't end up being swallowed up by their own bitterness
Jan 17 2017 : The Economic Times (Mumbai)

PRODUCTIVITY SPECIAL ......Why The Most Productive People Do These Six Things Every Day

Why The Most Productive People Do These Six Things Every Day

The secrets behind four-minute meetings and scrapping your to-do list.

Of all our available resources, everyone has the same number of hours in a day. Some, however, happen to get more done. Are they faster or smarter? Do they have more help? Perhaps. But they’ve also learned tricks that can help them stretch time and eliminate the unimportant.
Here are six things super-productive people do every day to maximize their results and success:
Consistency and routine are helpful for starting the day in a proactive mode. While the tasks vary, productive people have found a set of activities and order that works for them.
Serial entrepreneur Gary Vaynerchuk, author of #AskGaryVee: One Entrepreneur’s Take on Leadership, Social Media, and Self-Awareness, wakes up at 6 a.m. every day and follows the same routine. "I start my day by consuming quite a lot of information," he writes. "I go to TechMeme and check out the headlines. I read Jason Hirschhorn’s email newsletter, MediaREDEF. Then I hit the news outlets . . . the main site that I focus on during this time is Nuzzel, an aggregator of headlines and links that my circle is sharing."
After checking his Twitter and Instagram feeds, he heads to the gym for a workout with his trainer, returns home to connect with his family before they start their day, and then prepares for the first meeting of the day.
"By the time I step into that first meeting, so much is going through my head already," he writes.
Productive people understand the difference between important and urgent tasks. The former moves businesses forward while the latter puts out fires. It can be tempting to fill your day with urgent tasks because fires seem important in the moment, but you’ll never innovate or achieve more if you don’t move beyond what is and into what can be.
Each year Gary Keller, author of The One Thing: The Surprisingly Simple Truth Behind Extraordinary Results and founder of Keller Williams Realty, identifies his most important task and blocks out the first four hours of every day to focus on it.
"The key is time. Success is built sequentially. It’s one thing at a time," he writes in his book.
To identify his "one thing," Keller looks at his goals for the year and asks himself, "What's the one thing which, when tackled, will make everything else I have to do easier or unnecessary?" He then protects the first four hours of his workday to do only that one thing.
Keller has used the technique to write books as well as grow his company to the largest real estate franchise, and believes that until his top priority is done, anything else is a distraction.
While to-do lists are nice for capturing information and activities, productive people don’t run their day from one, says Peter Bregman, author of Four Seconds: All the Time You Need to Replace Counter-Productive Habits with Ones that Really Work. Instead, Bregman suggests scheduling any and all to-do list tasks on a calendar and using that as a blueprint.
"The reason we’re always left with unfinished items on our to-do lists is because those lists are the wrong tool to drive our accomplishments."
"Decide when and where you will do something, and the likelihood that you’ll follow through increases dramatically," he writes on his blog. "The reason we’re always left with unfinished items on our to-do lists is because those lists are the wrong tool to drive our accomplishments."
Calendars help you prioritize, says Bregman. "What is it that really needs to get done today? What important items have you been ignoring? Where can you slot those things into your schedule?" he writes. "A calendar is finite; there are only a certain number of hours in a day. That fact becomes clear the instant we try to cram an unrealistic number of things into a finite space."
Calendars are often divided into 30- or 60-minute increments, but productive people like to dial activities down even further, eliminating the chance that time goes unscheduled.
Grant Cardone, author of The 10X Rule: The Only Difference Between Success and Failure, learned that Alan Greenspan, former chairman of the Federal Reserve, divided his day into 15-minute increments and introduced the concept into his own schedule.
When you divide up an hour, you multiply the available time, Cardone says. "[Greenspan] didn’t let white space on that calendar, he knew white space was a problem because—white space, nothing in the 15 minutes—was a waste of time," he says in a video on his website.
Vaynerchuk also dials down his schedule into small increments. "Every minute counts, so my schedule is planned down to the second," he writes. "And I’m not kidding: I’ve had, and continue to have, three- and four-minute meetings. You have to use every second you get in a day."
We all know that email can be a time suck, but few of us do anything about it. A recent study by Adobe found that the average person spends 7.4 hours per weekday on email, which means we’re always fielding messages from our inboxes. Productive people, however, aren't slaves to technology, says Jason Jennings, author of Less is More: How Great Companies Use Productivity.
"Most super-productive people only check their email two or three times a day," Jennings told Prevention magazine.
Schedule email time on your calendar and process it in time blocks.
Constantly checking email also makes you less productive answering it, according to a study from the University of British Columbia. In an experiment, participants were put into two groups, with one told to check email three times a day and another told to check it as often as they wanted.
The group that checked email three times a day reduced the amount of time they spent answering messages by 20%. They also reported feeling less stressed than before.
You can't be productive if you’re not healthy. Virgin Group founder Richard Branson wakes up at 5 a.m. every day and exercises. "I definitely can achieve twice as much by keeping fit," Branson said in an interview with FourHourBodyPress. "It keeps the brain functioning well."

While some people like to workout before they head to the office, fitting in exercise during the workday is also effective. A study at Leeds Beckett University in the U.K. found that employees who used onsite gyms for daytime sweat sessions were more productive.
Successful people also get enough sleep. Bill Gates, Tim Cook, and Arianna Huffington all report getting seven hours a night. Researchers at the Finnish Institute of Occupational Health in Helsinki, Finland, found that those who did not get enough shut-eye are more likely to take extra sick days. The optimal amount of sleep for energy and wellness is seven to eight hours each night, according to the study published in the medical journal Sleep.

APPS / ENTREPRENEUR SPECIAL ........6 apps for entrepreneurs to boost productivity

6 apps for entrepreneurs to boost productivity

While running a business, time is of utmost value. Here are a few apps that can help you get organised and improve efficiency in the fast and dynamic startup world

Regardless of how you work or what sort of business you run, being productive is an un questionable requirement. Be that as it may, techniques and strategies aren't sufficient if you don't have the tools to execute them. Luckily, there's an app for that. Let's have a look at the top apps to boost productivity.
There's a reason this is the quickest developing app in the realm of business. Slack is ac claimed as the email executioner.  It's an instant messaging administration, chat room, group cooperation tool and customisable pro ductivity software all moved into one.
Producteev is a capable task management program, which permits you to effectively assign tasks to other team members, and also hold them accountable. One can create to-do lists, assign tasks, set due dates and reminders, and get real time updates on hisher Android.
G-Suite (Google Apps)
Unless you've been living under a Microsoft cloud, you should be using a portion of the Google apps for work or life: Google Mail, calendar, docs, sheets... the list goes on -essentially everything in Office, but better, simpler to collaborate, in the cloud, and free cheap.
Trello gives you a viewpoint over every one of your projects, at work and home. Whether it's managing a team, writing a screenplay, or simply making a grocery list, Trello is your side kick for completing things and remaining organised. With Trello, you can create boards to organise anything you're working on, customise workflows for different projects, assign tasks to yourself and co-workers, upload photos and videos, reply to comments and create cards from Android Wear, and more.
Always remember to invoice a customer. This app empowers you to send professional looking invoices, regardless of where you are, ending over looked billing and overlooked amounts due.Being a cloud-based invoice app, one can stay organised and save time by syncing docs and files, and making them available on any Android phone or tablet.
The efficient file hosting service seems to be a hit amongst entrepreneurs and business leaders alike. By keeping your files safe, synced and connect ed, it becomes easy to store and share files within your organisation. Not to mention that it has both free and premium versions available, accessible through Android, iOS and web applications.



Here’s a look at some of the most innovative gadgets at CES 2017
I STARTED THIS column as part II of a report on CES 2017 with some good stuff, a few of the junky products and closing it with some of the weird. Halfway through, realised that the list of truly innovative stuff was long and very meritorious. Thus, I’m dedicating this column to all the game-changing technology and products of CES 2017. Some of these will change the world this year.

Seven hugs Smart Remote:
Remotes are a mixed blessing. A universal remote was supposedly the solution, but all of them have either been useless or too complex to set up. Enter the Seven hugs Remote that knows what device you ’re pointing it towards and it automatically draws up the right buttons. Aim it at a TV or a Blu -ray player or even your DTH box and it’ll know what you need instantly. Its contextually aware system works with a proprietary indoor positioning system and is uncannily accurate.

Neonode AirBar:
The first touch screen Apple MacBook is here. Except Apple doesn’t make it! The AirBar from Neonode makes it happen. This small strip attaches to the base of the 13inch MacBook and throws ou t a completely invisible light field over the screen, tu rning you r laptop into a proper and very precise touchscreen. And it’s not ju st restricted to tou ch and opening apps. You can pretty mu ch do everything with it – tap, swipe, pinch and zoom.

HTC U Ultra and Play:
Two new phones from HTC break the innovation bank open. The design is almost liqu id and flows with curves arou nd the ou ter body and display. Fou r brilliant colou rs, switchable optics from UltraPixel mode, custom
tuning of the audio to fit your specific hearing, built-in voice assistants that go one step ahead of Google and a new feature called HTC Sense Companion. The Ultra has a small second display on the top with a 5.7-inch 2560×1440 display and 4GB RAM, while the Play has some similar specifications.

This one is both a jaw-dropping and a Eureka moment. As you play around with Tanvas, the touchscreen simulates whatever is displayed on-screen including textures, shapes and even patterns. This amazing magic happens with haptics at a whole new level. It uses electrostatic fields to create friction that your finger can feel and decipher. Thus, you can feel textures, lines, waves and a whole lot more. Hope this gets adopted by all the big players soon.

Laundroid Cupboard:
 Imagine a basket fu ll of clothes, all different and all as dirty as they can be. Ju st throw them into you r cupboard and go to work or for a movie. When you come back, the clothes have been washed, dried, ironed, folded, categorised and put in the right place in the cupboard. This is no pipe dream. Integrated with image analysis, AI and robotics as its core technology, this Landroid can do it all.

Xolo Era 2X:
Technically, Xolo Era 2X wasn’t launched at CES, ju st showcased in Las Vegas to a select few. Bu t it’s a game changer in its category of phones priced at 6K. A fingerprint scanner and great optics are u su ally reserved for phones over 10K, but this brings in all that plus a great looking form factor and marries it with powerful hardware and a 2500mAh battery. Few phones at CES can take on this economy champion.

Honda’s Self Balancer:
 Autonomous cars have one big advantage. Because they have four wheels, they are well balanced. Moving towards an autonomous motorcycle, the balancing problem needs to be solved first. And Honda did ju st that with its new Riding Assistant technology that keeps you r bike balanced even when it’s moving at speeds less than three miles per hour. So the time isn’t far when you could ask your bike to come out of the garage all on its own and drive you to work while you read a newspaper.

The Vive:
The new add-ons for HTC Vive, the best VR system in the world, ju st took it to a new level. The Delu xe Au dio Strap is an au diophile-level headset-mou nted headphone system. The TPCast wireless adapter makes you r headset tru ly wireless as it connects to a PC, while the ViveTracker turns almost anything into a VR controller. Yes, that means you can u se it to tu rn you r own daily objects, a toy or even a real sword into a controller.

Toyota Concept-i:
Toyota i stood out among the futuristic cars at CES because of the emotional connect. It does all the cool stuff like self-drive and connected mode, bu t it also prioritises user experience, combining AI driving and its own virtual assistant that learns the driver’s moods, needs and preferences, and acts accordingly. It’s also amazing looking.