Sunday, 28 April 2019

Zagreb Startup's Mundus Project - Australians Want Croatian Product

This Croatian startup from Zagreb is a real mix of classical and virtual mobile games, but also has an educational mission.

As Ivan Tominac/Poslovni Dnevnik writes on the 28th of April, 2019, today, virtual games have replaced classic ones like ''Čovječe ne ljuti se'' (Ludo) or ''Monopoly'', but when classically associated with a digital game, you end up with a smart social game - Mundus.

A passionate love for technology is shared by three students from Zagreb. They all came together two years ago, and their project is Mundus. Social games are undervalued today, these guys agree, and although industry experts might say that their project isn't in demand in this day and age, the fact is that they entered the startup world directly from their school desks and are learning in parallel with the development of the project.

"We had to combine what was unknown knowledge to us back then. But given the fact that we love to learn and to develop technology, it wasn't difficult for us,'' stated of Mundus's members, Filip Hercig, who was the one to kick off the project initially.

The idea for Mundus was quite spontaneous back at the end of 2015 when Hercig, who is now in charge of business development, showcased the very first concept of this clever game during a competition for young technicians and young entrepreneurs. The name changed several times - at the earliest stage it was called ''Zabavan put Hrvatske'' (A fun journey of Croatia) and then ''Svijet na dlanu'' (The world in your palm), before taking on its current name.

"In the summer of 2017, when we came to the CROZ company to develop our ideas, we decided to shorten its name from Svijet na dlanu down to just Svijet, but as it didn't sound good, we decided to translate into Latin, and that's how Mundus began,'' said Filip Hercig.

It seems that Mundus isn't just your regular type of game, and the focus of the project today is on the application of this technology within the scope of formal education. It's actually an educational system, and the game is just one of the solutions the Mundus team is working on. A mobile device acts as a kind of gaming agent, where players choose the theme for the game and launch a quiz, and everything else is played on the game's board, like with classic games before the Internet age.

Things became much more serious for this Croatian startup back in September of last year, when they won the Good Game Liftoff startup competition.

"They chose us as the best startup and besides giving us their trust, they also gave us 100,000 kuna. We can't forget to mention the Good Game Global company that actually organised the competition and raised all the funds for that prize,'' added Hercig.

After winning the Good Game Liftoff, this Croatian startup managed to secure numerous collaborations, is currently working with 48 schools across the Republic of Croatia, and interest in the game has stretched far beyond the borders of the country, and even beyond the borders of the EU and the European continent.

"There's interest on the Australian and New Zealand market, specifically in the education sector. We're currently conducting tests that are a prerequisite for serious moves in these markets,'' said Hercig. Mundus is actually still a non-profit organisation, explained Hercig, and in 2019, it should turn into a real company.

"We're oriented towards cooperating with educational institutions, but of course we're not closing the door to purchase options for private users. We've got potential there tool, and in order to best explore the mass market, we plan to launch a Kickstarter campaign in September 2019,'' concluded Mundus' Filip Hercig.

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Click here for the original article by Ivan Tominac for Poslovni Dnevnik

Friday, 26 April 2019

Croatian Architect Creates YouTube Content Devoted to ''Hidden'' Zagreb

As Lucija Spiljak/Poslovni Dnevnik writes on the 24th of April, 2019, Vid Juračić, a young Croatian architect, is the initiator of the fun and educational YouTube project ''Kvart priča''.

''It's important to try and do a variety of things while you're still at college because that's the right time to experiment and capture your dreams,'' these are the thoughts which are guiding 26-year-old Vid Juračić, a young Croatian architect, YouTuber and entrepreneur, and the initiator of the aforementioned educational and entertaining YouTube series project.

As part of the series, Vid visits various Zagreb neighbourhoods and, through the stories of this young man and an old man, he gets his followers better acquainted with some of the most hidden corners and the sights of the Croatian capital city of Zagreb in just fifteen minutes. Although he has successfully completed his education in architecture, Vid isn't spending his time designing houses but producing video content, and given the many ideas, plans and ambitions he has, this is just the beginning of the innovative content he creates which will be offered to his growing follower base.

After this multi-talented Croatian video maker realised that creating video content was what he wanted to do in life, he opened a company for making video footage, in which he offers video and movie production services; from the development of scenarios, recording, directing, to editing.

"I make a living from that. I can't complain, there's work. At the moment, I've been taking a break from working with clients and devoted myself solely to my own projects like Kvart priča,'' Vid explained. He first became lured by scenography four years ago, and then he began to work with recording, editing and directing. That's how his desire to create his own film was born. "I recorded my first short feature film back in 2015, and shortly after that I started working on YouTube videos. Working with videos and movies is a lot more exciting for me at this moment in time, but I'm sure I'll get back to architecture eventually, even if it's just to design my own house for myself,'' said Vid.

YouTube and all of the similar networks that have emerged with the birth and quick development of the Internet are currently the mainstream media, though such platforms may not be well-known to some people, says Vid, adding that it's difficult to state all of the jobs YouTube offers today.

"Americans have put all of this under one name, it's a bit banal, ''content creator'', which is perhaps the simplest way to describe these new types of jobs. Therefore, there's room for everyone's ideas. If people want to watch what you're doing, even if that's a relatively small number of people, then there's an opportunity to make more out of it than just a hobby. Attention is the top currency in the world, through attention, time is spent, and time is money. What people spend time on is worth it; that's why Instagram and YouTube get it,'' he explains.

This young Croatian entrepreneur believes YouTube will be a long-standing source of earning for a long time, given that we're actually only at the very beginning of the era in which people are making money from posting online.

"As far as YouTube is concerned, more people are watching it than creating videos on it, which is a great thing for those of us who do create; the demand is huge, the offer is limited, it couldn't be better,'' says Vid. The secret of his success is authenticity, but also the fact that he values ​​everyone who watches and follows him, which is one of the main reasons why he doesn't want to sell out.

"I don't do what I'm doing to become richer, but because I want to leave behind something that people will be able to appreciate today and in fifty years, but of course I still want to be financially successful," he says.

''It's recommended that people doo something alongside their current job because you never know what opportunities will come knocking with time. It is important to emphasise that it is very difficult to dedicate yourself properly to something when you already have a job and work from 09:00 to 17:00, so I'd especially like to emphasise the fact that it's important to try and do various things while you're still at college. That's the right time for experiments and capturing dreams,'' noted Vid.

"I have a lot of ideas for new projects and it's always a fight with time because I don't have enough of it to do all these projects. I want to make a spin off series of Kvart priča - Otok priča, where I visit the Adriatic islands during the summer. Of course, there's also the ability to make Kvart priča for other Croatian cities. But I'm also planning some projects unrelated to Kvart priča, such as directing a long film. I've always got plans,'' concluded Vid Juračić.

Make sure to follow our dedicated lifestyle and Made in Croatia pages for much more on Croatian products, companies, services, and creations.

 

Click here for the original article by Lucija Spiljak for Poslovni Dnevnik

Wednesday, 24 April 2019

Digital Croatia: Best Large ''Digital'' Cities Zagreb and Rijeka

Just how close are we to a real digital Croatia? The answer is unclear and as varied as ever, but some Croatian cities have shown promise with some rather impressive and encouraging results.

As Novac/Gradonacelnik.hr writes on the 23rd of April, 2019, although more and more cities are gradually digitising their business and investing in smart city solutions, and some of the most advanced have almost completely switched to doing solely digital business, generally speaking, Croatian cities are only in the very early stages of the much needed digital transition, just as Croatia is, as a country, at the very bottom in Europe in terms of the digital readiness of general society and the economy.

As the methodology for ranking cities in terms of digital readiness is only at its very beginning even at the European level, stories and analysis of the "smart city" concept development here in Croatia are still very much based on individual experiences, examples and projects.

That is why, in order to gain a real elementary insight into the digitalisation of Croatia's services and the communication of the country's many city administrations with citizens, experts from Apsolon, a consulting company specialising in digital business development, has undertaken the very first major study of the ''digital readiness'' of twenty of the largest cities across Croatia. This study, according to project manager and smart management director at Apsolon, Ivana Novoselec, is the basis for the further development of research tools and methodology that will track the development and progress of Croatia's cities on an annual basis.

In its study, Apsolon divided the cities into three categories - large (Zagreb, Split, Rijeka, Osijek), middle (Zadar, Velika Gorica, Slavonski Brod, Pula and Karlovac) and smaller cities (Sisak, Varaždin, Šibenik, Dubrovnik, Bjelovar, Kaštela, Samobor, Vinkovci, Koprivnica, Đakovo, Vukovar.)

The digital readiness index at Apsolon was set based on several criteria - the availability of e-services (the number of administrative services and their digitalisation rate in Croatia), the availability of site service information and the development of unified services for making payments in the city, then came the availability of city data, the level of citizen participation in decision making and communication channels between the city administration and citizens, ie, the availability of data and time in which citizens receive answers to their various questions. At this stage, Apsolon hasn't entered into the internal processes in Croatia's city administrations, but rather focused on what services are offered to the city's citizens and how long such things typically take.

After this type of indexing and ranking, the title of the ''digitisation champion'' among the Croatian cities was awarded to the City of Rijeka, thus confirming its status as the best city in the Smart City category which it won last year. Apsolon pointed out that the City of Rijeka has achieved the greatest advances in the systematic raising of the quality of its services, but also the opening of data and communication channels to citizens.

"Rijeka as the most advanced city in Croatia in terms of digitisation and is characterised in particular by the emphasis on openness and communication with its citizens. Its administration is oriented towards clear communication (a very clear centralised e-services approach with well-organised access to all automated services and available forms), openness and participatory management," said project manager Ivana Novoselac.

In many categories, especially those relating to the functional aspects of digitisation (advanced digital services, e-citizen connectivity, etc.), Rijeka is followed closely by the City of Zagreb.

The city of Pula is the most advanced middle-size city in Croatia, which also presents its services and available information to its citizens in a systematic and very detailed way, raising standards in terms of transparency and interaction with citizens, and is certainly a champion among cities with between 50.000 and 100.000 inhabitants.

In relation to the criteria relating to specific functional and technological solutions, Karlovac, Velika Gorica and Zadar follow. For the City of Karlovac the large number of available administrative procedures on its website and responses to citizens' inquiries are generally quick made it stand out from the crowd.

Among the small cities in Croatia, there is no distinctly dominant digital champion, but according to research findings in different aspects of digitisation, Dubrovnik, Samobor, Sisak, Koprivnica and Varaždin appear to be the most successful ones, according to this research. Among the prominent representatives of this category, Dubrovnik is strategically trying to profile as Smart City and has a high quality City Card, e-Visitor platform, is very active on social networks and it continuing to develop innovative application solutions. When it comes to the number of digitally available services, Koprivnica ranks above all.

Samobor, which is particularly active on social networks and is the category winner for social networking, has a very comprehensive and interactive website which separates the site accordingly and has adjusted all of the information for citizens and for visitors, as well as separating foreign visitors from domestic ones.

It should also be noted that Bjelovar is extremely proactive in the field of the digitalisation of its administration, it is working on applicative transparency solutions as well as on internal digitalisation processes. What is particularly commendable is Bjelovar's focus on the digitalisation of its internal processes.

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Click here for the original article by Novac/Jutarnji/Gradonacelnik.hr

Wednesday, 17 April 2019

Croatia's Hangar18 Opens First Store in Dublin, Ireland

As Bernard Ivezic/Poslovni Dnevnik writes on the 16th of April, 2019, in the very first NOA store in Dublin, Ireland, this company from Koprivnica, Croatia, sells mobile phones, televisions and mobile phone accessories all under their own brand.

Croatia's successful Hangar18 company from Koprivnica, which has developed its very own brand of mobile phones, NOA, which has a market share in the domestic field immediately behind giants like Samsung and Apple, has opened its first own NOA store.

The first brand store the company has opened is in the Irish city of Dublin, and this Croatian technology company has stated that it plans a further fifteen such stores in Ireland alone. Additionally, over the next three years, Hangar18 plans to open a total of one hundred of its own NOA stores across Western Europe.

Mario Pintar, Marketing Manager at Hangar18, says this enviably successful Croatian company has changed their approach to developing its sales network. In Eastern markets, with the exception of Croatia, and where they have been operating so far, the company does business via distributors, while in the west, he wants to be in direct contact with the company's customers.

"Customers in Eastern Europe buy mobile phones of up to 150 euros, while in the west, due to the better purchasing power, they're buying more expensive devices, and we see a greater room for growth," explained Pintar. He added that the company's expansion initially started a year ago, and intensive work has been going on on for the past six months.

He didn't want to comment on just how much the company invested, nor did he want offer any comment on much they plan to invest in further expansion. According to data from Business Croatia, Hangar18 saw growth from 242 to 137 million kuna from 2013 to 2017, its exports jumped to an impressive 66.7 million kuna, and its net profit rose from 1.3 to 4.8 million kuna. Mario Pintar says that they already have a warehouse over in Ireland and that they're hiring the first workers for it. He says that on average, the company will require three to four employees per store, and potentially even more for sales and management.

"Our colleague Tihana Magdić has been living in Dublin for a long time, so that's why we started with Ireland. She was promoted to country manager, she's well acquainted with the market, and the shopping centre we first entered was a great partner and it was very easy to arrange everything with them,'' Pintar said.

Pintar explained that in the west, Croatia's Hangar18 will compete in the B category of brands, but as the first choice of those who instead of A brands want the Best Buy mobile.

"What sets us apart is the fact that we give customers the functionality of A brand at a fair price, and then the Noa Premium Care warranty covers the first twelve months for damages such as screen breakages and water damage, and our ''after sales support,'' and we open our authorised NOA service in every country we enter,'' explained Pintar.

He added that after Ireland, Croatia's Hangar18 plans to open stores in other European countries, including the United Kingdom, Germany, France and Spain. However, he noted the fact that they hadn't forgotten about the eastern markets. For example, in Croatia alone, there are fifteen retail outlets where they sell various brands of ICT equipment. "Recently, we've been able to directly export to Russia as a third company from Croatia, which opens opportunities for us in both Azerbaijan and Kazakhstan,'' concluded Hangar18's Pintar.

Make sure to follow our dedicated Made in Croatia and business pages for more on business in Croatia, investment in Croatia, products and services from Croatia and much more.

 

Click here for the original article by Bernard Ivezic for Poslovni Dnevnik

Tuesday, 16 April 2019

Croatia's AD Plastik Contracts Job Worth 48.6 Million Euro for EU Market

While bleak and uninspiring stories about the state of the Croatian economy and doing business in Croatia continue to circulate across news and media portals as well as in newspapers, not everything is so bleak, you just need to look a little harder. Croatia's AD Plastik has contracted brand new jobs for the European Union market worth a massive 46.8 million euros.

As SEEbiz writes on the 16th of April, 2019, Croatia's AD Plastik d.d. has contracted the new jobs for the European Union for the PSA and FCA Group.

The job of the production of speaker carriers for the Citroen Picasso and C-Elysee PSA Group cars was contracted, which is worth 1.7 million euros, with the start of production scheduled for 2020 with a projected eight-year duration. With the very same buyer, the production of side panels for the Citroen C3 in the value of an additional three million euros, with the start of production planned in 2020, is also in the works, with a projected duration of four years.

New operations for the production of guardrails/handrails for several PSA Group vehicles (Peugeot 208, Peugeot 2008, Citroen DS3 Crossback and Opel Corsa) have been agreed with a total value of 20 million euros attached to them, with a projected ten-year duration, and the works begining during 2019. The Opel Adam Crossback is yet another vehicle from the aforementioned group, for which the engine manufacturing, costing 1.4 million euros, has been contracted with Croatia's AD Plastik, with the anticipated start of serial production being next year, and the duration of the project standing at seven years.

Croatia's AD Plastik d.d. also arranged and contracted 20.7 million euros' worth of new jobs for the FCA Group for the Jeep Compass and Fiat 500e cars. For the Fiat 500e, interior components and air intakes will be produced at AD Plastik's factories, and the total value of the project is 13.9 million euros. The project duration is projected at eight years and serial production is planned for 2020.

For the Jeep Compass, handgrip production contracted at 6.8 million euros has been agreed and the start of serial production is planned for next year with an estimated four year project duration.

Make sure to follow our dedicated business and Made in Croatia pages for much more on doing business in Croatia, products and services from Croatia, manufacturing in Croatia and much more.

Monday, 15 April 2019

Croatia's Nocturiglow Begins Creating ''Low Tech'' Products for Elderly

As Bernard Ivezic/Poslovni Dnevnik writes on the 14th of April, 2019, Croatia's Nocturiglow is currently the biggest startup ''surprise'' in the Republic of Croatia. The story of this startup, which won best pitch at the first Investors Conference @ Algebra Lab, has accelerated beyond all possible expectations.

The Nocturiglow team has developed a low-tech care product for the elderly and infirm which has the same name as the company itself, for those who struggle to get up to go to the bathroom to urinate, or for those who simply cannot for whatever reason. The only, conditionally speaking that is, "technological" thing that Nocturiglow's ''bowl'' possesses is that it has fluorescent elements which make it glow in the dark, which is why it's easy to locate and use during the night. There is a female and a male version.

Nocturiglow's Ivan Babić politely declined to show an image of the design of Nocturiglow's new product, because he is currently in the process of having this intellectual property protected for sale on the EU market.

"We're completely low tech. That was our whole goal, because our competition doesn't focus on quality and user experience, and that's why we think we have room for success," Babić says. He added that Nocturiglow will develop other care products aimed at the older generation in the future, and they will also incorporate sensors, which of course means adding more technology.

Like most millenials today, unsatisfied with the potential income and opportunities that he could accomplish with a master's degree in logistics and management here in Croatia, he was looking for a stroke of luck which would take him down a different path, and so he left Croatia. For three years, he worked as a carer for people with disabilities over in Germany, a job which helped him arrive to this idea in the first place.

"When the STEP-RI startup incubator issued a tender, I applied, I resigned from my job in Germany and came back to Croatia to develop my own business," Babić says. In the past six months, he has made a prototype on his computer with his partner Sara Gunjača and his designer, Ivo Blažinčić.

Now he is preparing to create the very first functional prototype. His plan is to make fifty copies to be shared by test users. Previously, this type of thing was tested through surveys among employees of private and public healthcare institutions.

"We have also noticed that our product is not only good for patients but also for healthcare institutions, because it facilitates jobs for caregivers, as well as insurance companies," added Babić.

He noted that he wants to start selling Nocturiglow's brand new product through his own web store by the beginning of 2020, while the ''attacking'' the EU market through Amazon. He also wants to develop sales to various  healthcare institutions. He has even been in talks with an American company, a partner of Kickstarter, about production. Currently, however, investors haven't come knocking at his door, yet.

Make sure to follow our dedicated business and Made in Croatia pages for much more.

 

Click here for the original article by Bernard Ivezic for Poslovni Dnevnik

Monday, 15 April 2019

Mate Rimac Employs First Deaf Person to Graduate from FER

Statistics show that about 12,000 deaf people live in the Republic of Croatia, but unfortunately it is rare for them to complete their higher education.

As Ivan Tominac/Poslovni Dnevnik writes on the 14th of April, 2019, Josip Ivanković was born in Čapljina, Bosnia and Herzegovina, but just one year after his birth, he was declared deaf, and this fact was one of his reasons for his relocation to Croatia. His move to Croatia certainly paid off as being the right move, and Josip, despite the diagnosis, managed to develop his speech and the technique of listening. That was, as Josip himself states, a painstaking and long process.

"The situation is that I have to treat speaking Croatian as if I was speaking a foreign language," Josip Ivanković explained.

For four years now, his speech and listening abilities have been being developed at the SUVAG Polyclinic, where Josip learned to speak with vibration, tone amplification, visualisation and by learning anatomy.

"When I learned to pronounce the letter ''r'', I had to touch the vocal chords of the logopad to feel a certain vibration and titration, then I'd lean my hand on my neck to feel the same vibration, so I learned to pronounce the letter ''r'' I learned to pronounce ''ž'' in a similar way, I just put my hand on my head. Generally speaking, the hardest letters to pronounce for the deaf are l,č,ć,đ,dž,lj and nj, and the reason for that is that such letters can't be visually identified. They're explained through the anatomy of the oral cavity, just like a doctor explains the heart's organs, or where the blood enters and where it exits,'' explained Josip.

After the kindergarten era ended, in which he learned the basics of socialisation, it was decided that he should attend a regular school.

This period of schooling, without any curriculum adjustment, he adds, was defined by perseverance, and communicational misunderstandings are, in his words, quite normal and natural.

"The professors made me equal with my peers, and this proved to be a good thing because I learned so much about the world of those who can hear, and I learned how to gather information," said Josip. As stated, statistics show that about 12,000 deaf people live in Croatia, but it is rare for them to complete higher education. Josip was not one of them, and he completed a college which has some very demanding academic requirements for its students.

He enrolled at FER (University of Zagreb, Faculty of Electrical Engineering and Computing), and the likelihood of him completing his studies was slim, yet Josip had different plans for himself.

"At the beginning of the semester, it was very difficult for me to adapt,'' recalled Josip. Before Josip's arrival, professors from Zagreb's FER didn't have any experience in working with people with impaired hearing. At the beginning, he failed several exams, but he didn't let that dampen his spirit, and later he turned to further consultations.

This combination led him to become the very first deaf person to graduated from that college.

"The professors were very approachable, and our relationship was very flexible and adaptable. I will never forget how Professor Brnetić, instead of me asking him, personally invited me to consultations during the holidays and showed me much he cared that I didn't miss anything from the lecture. On the other hand, one professor asked me during consultations why I didn't go to the lectures and asked me how I was learning. I told him that I don't go to the lectures because I can't hear them. I took out a 100-page notebook with my assignments, and the professor was surprised that I did all that without having gone to any lectures. He asked me to lend him that notebook and later I learned that he'd showed my notebook to all of the professors. Believe it or not, a year after when I came to his office, that copy of the notebook was still on his desk,'' Josip stated, recalling his faculty days.

In the end, none of the obstacles he faced along the way turned him away from his goal, and he passed 62 engagements that mostly relied solely on him and his level of dedication. This FER student didn't have to wait around long before a job opportunity came knocking, and it wasn't your regular offer. He started his working life at no less than Rimac Automobili as an Embedded Hardware Engineer. Rimac had no problems with his deafness and offered him a position after his interview.

''At the beginning of the job, I was given a pretty demanding project that I had to complete within a month, which was the length of my trial period, and when the project ended I realised that I was able to complete it and was given the green light to remain with the firm,'' Josip said. The work never stops at Rimac Automobili, and at the moment, Josip is working on a project for the development of electric car chargers.

"Communication skills are the most difficult for me, because I have to invest extra energy into lip reading and that's mentally challenging and difficult. Imagine a situation in which a colleague is referring to professional terms, and I need to decode them with and put them into context in order for me to have any understanding. Imagine switching off your ears, and focusing your eyes on their lips alone.

You aren't likely to understand because they're not using standard words, they're using technical phrases that are difficult to decode and recognise. At the beginning, it was very difficult for me to follow verbal communication and understand the complexity of the project. Of course, since working here I've changed a lot and become much more calm, more focused and concentrated on the small things. The worst thing is when a colleague does not know how to communicate with me properly, and this is where I'm concerned about information which is valuable to the project, and that's an extra effort. Each colleague has his own specific way of speaking and they aren't all the same in communication. With time, I somehow adjusted to them, and they also had to adapt to me, I accepted that this was all normal and there would always be a situation where they couldn't understand, but I'll always ask them to repeat themselves not just twice, but 1000 times!'' concluded Josip.

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Click here for the original article by Ivan Tominac for Poslovni Dnevnik

Saturday, 6 April 2019

Snapchat Integrates Croatia's Photomath for Solving Mathematical Problems

As Mia Biberovic/Netokracija writes on the 5th of April, 2019, Snapchat's camera is set to become even smarter, as was stated yesterday at the Snap Partner Summit. Namely, an expanded reality platform was presented for developers under the name of Scan, and among the first partners is Croatia's very own Photomath, which will now enable Snapchat users to easily solve mathematical tasks.

For a while now it has been able to be seen that Snap has been heading in the direction of expanded reality more strongly. This was yet more visible when the wildly popular app introduced real-world scanning, recognition abilities, and the possibility to purchase through Amazon, directly via the app. In addition, Snapchat's camera enabled song recognition through Shazam, and new, more interesting camera applications were presented yesterday, this means that Giphy will be able to recognise real-world objects and include a convenient GIF to match, and Photomath will recognise maths problems and offer users a solution.

Croatia's Photomath application has already risen to extreme levels of popularity. Back in November, Netokracija exclusively wrote about the Croatian app's impressive 100 million downloads. In addition, founder Damir Sabol then announced that they received a six million dollar investment. This partnership with Snapchat, which, when announced at Snap's event for partners, received a special applause, and will surely help make these already impressive figures even higher.

As Damir Sabol, the founder and CEO of Photomath told Netokracija, this collaboration is well positioned for targeted users because Snapchat and Photomath have very customised user bases and naturally coincide.

Sabol: The basic features of Photomath will be available through Scan.

Among other things, Sabol revealed that only one part of the application's functionality will be integrated into Snapchat's Scan:

Only the basic features will be available on Snapchat - specifically, getting solutions for whatever is being scanned. For all of the other features, and mostly for step-by-step explanation, Photomath is there. Thus, Photomath's founder believes that such a cooperation will open the way for new users because Photomath isn't intended for offering only the ultimate solutions to mathematical tasks, but a higher educational value through the solving process, and this can only be achieved through the Photomath application itself.

When it comes to the number of users, Snapchat is still lagging behind Instagram, but CEO Evan Spiegel revealed, as TechCrunch writes, in the US, Snapchat reaches nearly 75 percent of all people between 13 and 34 years of age.

We reach 90 percent of people between the ages of 13 and 24, in essence, we reach more people of that age than Facebook and Instagram in the United States, the UK, France, Canada and Australia does.

This also proves Sabol's assertion that the target group matches them. However, on the sidelines, what Snapchat's greatest asset is the will of the user to explore the world of expanded reality, which is something other social network platforms have not yet achieved. In addition to being an inevitable source of customer entertainment, this is also a great opportunity for partners, and examples of collaboration were presented yesterday, such as those with Netflix, or with the well known GoFundMe platform, to share news of various charity campaigns.

Scan will allow us to scan everything around us in order to interact with objects and living creatures, whether it is banknotes, monuments, or our pets in expanded reality. Otherwise, Scan was created based on the startup of Scan.me.

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Click here for the original article by Mia Biberovic for Netokracija

Friday, 29 March 2019

How Many Croatian Companies Are Working on Digital Transformation?

Just how many Croatian companies are seriously working on the deeply desired digital transformation that Croatia so desperately needs? Not that many, at least for now...

As Bernard Ivezic/Poslovni Dnevnik writes on the 27th of March, 2019, in the Republic of Croatia, fifteen to twenty percent of Croatian companies are seriously working on the much talked about digital transformation, stated regional director Marin Tadić at the opening of Oracle Technology Day, the annual conference of the IT company which bears the same name.

He added that Oracle estimates that global spending on digital transformation will grow by fifteen percent.

"By the year 2021, in Europe, the Middle East and Africa, there will be an investment of 421 billion dollars in the digital transformation of the public and private sectors, and this is a great opportunity for growth," stated Tadić.

The dominant carrier of [digital] transformation will be the cloud. It will, as he emphasised, deliver on all the technologies we're talking about today such as artificial intelligence, blockchain, the internet, and vocal/speech and other types of technologies.

He added that Oracle already offers its own solutions in the cloud. In addition to that are the use of artificial intelligence and blockchain, for which there's a potential seen in data forensics, securities and even in green energy. By 2025, he expects all applications to be autonomous and enriched with artificial intelligence. He also argued that the emergence of new telecom solutions makes it all the more profitable, while a revolution is expected in the use of voice technologies.

"In Croatia, the work of computers turning speech into text is already working well, and its only a matter of time for when translation from text to speech happens, and then we'll see the evolution of omnichannel," concluded Tadić.

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Click here for the original article by Bernard Ivezic for Poslovni Dnevnik

Friday, 29 March 2019

Mirko Kovač Discusses Robotics Possibilities in Croatia

Mirko Kovač, a Swiss scientist and roboticist discusses the situation and the possibilities of developing robotics and this type of technology in the Republic of Croatia.

As Goran Jungvirth/Poslovni Dnevnik writes on the 28th of March, 2019, at the international DroneDays conference, which was held this week for the first time at the Zagreb Faculty of Electronics and Computing (FER), Poslovni Dnevnik spoke with Swiss scientist Dr Mirko Kovač, head of the Air Robotics Laboratory at London's Imperial College, as well as the newly established Swiss Robotic Centre for Materials and Technology.

This centre was created in conjunction with the London Laboratory, which Kovač also included in collaboration with FER's Robotics and Intelligent Management Systems (LARICS). Due to this co-operation that has been going on for several years, the Zagreb and London labs have received (EU Obzor 2020) the AeRo Twin project (Twinning co-ordination action for spreading excellence in Aerial Robotics).

How did this important co-operation happen?

I met Croatian robot-makers from FER about five years ago when I had a lecture in Dubrovnik. They're working on some good projects, interesting ones. They're part of a robotics society, a global community. Together we applied and received the European project AeRo Twin (Twinning co-ordination action for spreading excellence in Aerial Robotics).

What will that project enable?

The project aims to convey the knowledge of various groups in Europe. It's actually networking with leading robot scientists to share their knowledge and experience on flying robots and in that way, reach the top of the world's robotics. Within the project, various lectures will be organised as well as the exchange of scientists. I can hardly wait for the roboticists from Croatia to come to London to see what can be done in Zagreb. There will be plenty of practical work, not just theory. I'm very happy to cooperate with Croatian scientists and to keep track of what's happening in robotics in Croatia.

Why is Croatia so dear to you?

Well, I feel close to Croatia. My parents come from Croatia, I have many relatives there, so it's not just about the scientific dimension and interest, but also about the culture of the country that attracts me and the feelings I have for Croatian people. It's nice to be here, to come to where my parents come from and communicate with people whose mentality I like very much.

The Swiss have just built a Robotics Centre within the Federal Laboratory for Materials Science and Technology because of you. What's going on there?

I'm glad that such a research centre has been set up with the aim of [undertaking] the futuristic research of flying robots to work in the buildings of the future. Here, we look at the symbiosis of such robots with people living in a certain space, to develop the robustness of the robots and materials that will increase their functionality and reduce any danger for people. The London lab provides knowledge of robotics, and the Swiss centre, the knowledge of suitable materials.

You haven't forgotten Croatia either, and the mentioned Aerial Robotics project - AeRo Twin opens up opportunities for the development of modern robotics in Croatia...

Yes, the project coordinators are prof. dr. sc. Stjepan Bogdan and Mag. ing. Ivana Mikolić. It's an important project for the future of robotics in Croatia, because, as I've already mentioned, it will enable the exchange of knowledge on flying robots and the mutual practical cooperation on the development of technology.

Is there any potential for developing a robotics centre in Croatia?

Of course there's potential. I think that will be more and more important for Croatia, how digitisation and robotics are being developed, and the strategies for its implementation. Robotics are the essence of this, and will become even more important in the development of artificial intelligence. Robotics can help everyone, and I think that there's great potential for this as far as Croatia is concerned.

When you say potential, do you mean human potential?

Yes, for example, FER has some very good students and has great potential to become a contemporary partner with other science centres in Europe. I'm mostly thinking of human and scientific potential, but there is also the [potential] of the country itself. Projects are growing in the EU and the situation for robotics is gaining traction. But infrastructure is still developing and that's where the chance for Croatia lies. Because Croatia has the sea, there is an opportunity for testing underwater robotics in various economic activities. It has a variety of nature and different terrain, a variety of topologies that can help develop robotic applications. Croatia has a lot of potential.

You were a robotics researcher at the world's most powerful universities, such as Harvard and Berkeley, while you got your doctorate at the Swiss Institute in Lausanne. How hard is it today to educate a robotics scientist, since everything is developing so quickly? You've been talking at Drone Days about the third wave of robotics in the economy. How does one track those standards and reach the top?

You need to be world-oriented for robotics. Yes, it's hard to keep track of it all because it involves the need to know about interdisciplinary science when it comes to robotics. There are many different concepts. Control engineering, algorithms for audiovisual processing, design, mechanics, material science, biology... all of these parts are very demanding even for themselves and it's very difficult to understand them in detail. Scientific collaboration is therefore very important for the development of robotics, because robotics integrates all of that knowledge.

So, a scientist in robotics must develop independently and specialise in certain knowledge, and then collaborate in teams with colleagues from other scientific disciplines?

Yes, that's a multidisciplinary area and collaboration is very important. Robotics is, by its very nature, collaborative, different teams perform different experiments, and then they share their results. That's why the aforementioned European project is important for Croatian robotics as FER scientists will be exchanged in London where they will collaborate with different teams.

How is your new Swiss NEST project progressing?

We're developing our team, it's essential to have cooperation and partnership with other groups from around the world. The biggest challenge is to find solutions for the integration of new materials. The materials are very important. We have a lot to do with the design of flying robots and the development of new autonomous concepts.

Since you live and work in London, what's your comment on Brexit? Will it complicate the co-operation you emphasise as crucial for robotics development for scientists?

There's a fear in the community that Britain will find it very difficult to handle Brexit. Science will suffer for this. The consequences are already apparent, but it's a relief that the top scientists are independent. All the partnerships I've been involved in are independent. British scientists will have to fight to remain involved in EU projects, not to stay isolated. This is a very dangerous situation, but it's good that Britain is investing heavily in the development of science and technology, such as robotics, digitisation and artificial intelligence. There are a lot of possibilities in the UK, but we will have to work hard to keep hold of the UK's cooperation with the rest of Europe.

Are you talking to Croatian scientists about the problems they face in Croatia?

Yes, we're talking...

And what do they complain the most about, what's the most problematic thing for the development of science and technology in Croatia?

I don't have a great deal to say about that, you'll have to ask them. I don't work here, so I don't have any of my own experiences on it.

What's the most important thing in your eyes for the future of robotics?

Multidisciplinarity is the most important thing. One can not think of just one area, but rather how to integrate various aspects of science and apply them to robotics. For example, for the development of my robot grasshopper - with which I earned my doctorate - I needed knowledge from biology and biomechanics. For robotics, everything is important and there's a lot of potential for all other branches of science to contribute to it. Robotics will become very important for the lives of all people.

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Click here for the original article/interview by Goran Jungvirth for Poslovni Dnevnik

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