With more and more of the media we consume being digital, you may have heard a lot of terms about video quality being tossed about. SD, HD, QHD, 4K, and so on. You may also have heard them if you’re in the market for a new TV or computer monitor, or even a new smartphone.

In this article, I’ll explain the various terms, and what they mean to you when it comes to streaming media, as well as when purchasing gadgets with screens.

The Basics

Everything displayed on an electronic screen is made up of a series of tiny dots, called pixels. Images are formed by giving each pixel a different colour, so they make up what you see on the screen. The smaller a screen manufacturer can make a pixel, the more of them you can cram onto a single screen. The idea is to have them so tiny that you can’t see the individual pixels unless you look very closely–what Apple has called their “Retina Display”, for example, although this technique is used by all manufacturers for their high-end products.

Video quality, then, is based on the number of pixels sent to your screen. If the number of pixels in the video is considerably less than the number of pixels on your screen, then the video displays in a very small portion of your screen. If you force it to enlarge to the whole screen, the video will look blocky as many pixels on your screen are used to represent one pixel in the video.

If the number of pixels for the video is bigger than the screen, then only part of the video will be displayed on the screen (if it’s able to display the video at all). If you’re lucky, you can drag it around to see the full picture, otherwise you’ll be stuck with that little corner. As you can see, matching screen size with video quality is quite important!

Of course, there are also other issues to consider such as refresh rate, and whether every line or every second line is refreshed each time. But for this article, we will simply be looking at pixel sizing.

Standard Definition (SD)

Standard definition videos are 720 pixels wide, by either 480 or 576 pixels tall. Although strictly, SD videos are meant to have a 4:3 ratio, the 576 pixels is used by Australian broadcasters for standard definition shows.

Unless specifically stated, almost all free-to-air TV is transmitted in SD. Same with cable TV–in Australia, for example, you need to pay $10/month extra on Foxtel to have access to their high-definition (HD) channels, and only selected ones are available.

Most videos online are available to stream or download in SD. Why would you choose standard definition over high? For the amount of data you would use. Netflix, for example, estimates that you would use about 700MB an hour streaming a SD video. Youtube, which uses different methods of processing and streaming videos, uses around 240MB an hour. If you have strict data limits from your internet service provider or are using mobile data, the data usage is something to keep in mind!

High Definition (HD) – 720p

To confuse the matter, there are a few different definitions of HD. One of those is 720p, though strictly speaking this is noticeably lower definition than the other HD standards. The “p” on the end refers to how the picture is refreshed–it stands for “progressive”, meaning all lines are refreshed on each picture refreshed (as opposed to “i” for “interpolated”, where only every second line is refreshed).

720p HD videos are 1280 pixels wide by 720 pixels tall. It’s mainly used for online streaming–you’ll notice it’s one of the options on Youtube. This will use about 450MB an hour. Netflix doesn’t explicitly specify how much data 720p HD uses, as they include it in their “High” video quality settings together with the higher resolution HD videos. All the official site says is “up to 3GB an hour for HD”.

It’s important to note that some manufacturers market TVs and screens as HD displays when they are 720p, and you should be aware that this is lower definition than what those same manufacturers term as “True-HD” displays.

High Definition (HD) – 1080p/i

This is marketed as “True-HD” or “Full-HD”, to distinguish it from the 720p HD videos and displays. These videos are 1920 pixels wide by 1080 pixels tall. 1080i is the general standard for HD TV broadcasts, while 1080p video is used on Blu-Rays.

1080p would use the most amount of data for HD video quality on Netflix, which is about 3GB an hour. Youtube will use about 750MB an hour. Note that many videos on Youtube are not available in HD, though that number is quickly growing.

When purchasing a flat-screen TV, this should be the standard you go for.

4k Ultra HD

This is the latest next-gen standard. A 4k resolution is 3,840 pixels wide by 2,160 pixels tall–in total, four times the pixel density of 1080p. There are only a few TVs out at the moment with a 4k resolution, and you’ll pay through the nose for them. No TV stations currently broadcast in 4k, so it will be a long while before you get any decent use out of your expensive TV anyway!

That said, Netflix does offer some content in 4k. But it will use up 7GB an hour, so tread carefully! Also, there are now video recorders and smartphones that can record 4k video, so you can shoot and show off your home videos in 4k as well.

Don’t get this confused with other similar terms you may have seen thrown around, mainly in the smartphone space–qHD and Quad HD (also, confusingly, called QHD). qHD stands for quarter-definition HD, meaning it’s a quarter of the pixels of 1080p HD. Quad HD is four times the pixels of a 720p display, so while it’s higher than a 1080p display, it’s still not 4k.

Featured image: Ifa zeigt flaches Fernsehen


We’re kicking off a new Technology series in March, and kicking off our shoes to show you a different side of some incredible, inspiring women in the tech industry.

Our first interview is with Angela Fox. You may know her as the Managing Director of Dell Australia and New Zealand. She’s one of a growing number of high-ranking women in the technology sector, and has been instrumental in guiding Dell A/NZ through the recent global shake-up stemming from its privatisation.

But Angela is also a committed family woman, a pragmatist, and her beginnings back at university may surprise you! Read on for four things you didn’t know about Angela Fox!

What is one thing that we don’t know about your career?

Angela: Most people are surprised when they hear that I have a Bachelor of Science majoring in Zoology–this doesn’t seem very logical to some people! When I graduated there was a number of outstanding graduate programs, that judged you on having succeeded in obtaining your degree at a reasonable level, and having characteristics that companies were looking for. Many corporations were still taking on generalist intake, it didn’t really matter what your background was. I think it is getting tougher these days, graduates are being hired in their specialist area, such as Marketing or Finance.

What is one thing that you can share about your day-to-day life?

Angela: My husband and I don’t have any family in Sydney, and only one family member in Australia. Because we don’t have family around us, we have a daily ritual of multiple Skype calls to allow us to stay in touch with our families and to let our daughter keep day to day communication with her family – from aunts, uncles, cousins to grandparents. This ritual is very important to us.

What is your personal philosophy?

Angela: Truly believe that you have to live in the moment and seize the opportunity. While I am not a reckless person, you can’t beat yourself up for something in the past. It is that old adage: you can influence the future but you can’t change the past. While you have to take the learnings from the past, I am not big on beating yourself up over things that you can’t change. I am relatively pragmatic and I look for the positives and ways to always improve, learn and get on with it.

What is one piece of technology that you can’t live without?

Angela: I can’t live without mobile devices. From the laptop that I use at the office, to the tablet device I use for business and pleasure to my good old mobile phone! For me, there isn’t one thing: it is symptomatic with what is happening with technology, we are all leveraging multiple devices! I recently read an interesting article about “technology addiction”. Learning to turn the device off is part of it; you can’t neglect old-fashioned face-to-face communication.

We have a longer interview with Angela coming up next week, so don’t forget to check back in for that!


Tablets and smartphones have definitely changed the way that we work both in the workforce, in our businesses and at home. The consumption of content is mainly via portable devices, and such habits won’t be going away any time soon.

A survey conducted by Salesforce into Mobile Behaviour (2014) found that 85% of respondents commented that mobile devices were a central part of their lives. Sometimes, it is easier to read, peruse social media and surf the Internet from a tablet device rather than a smaller screen of a smart phone. Portable devices can also help streamline your day-to-day workflow, fitting into the cracks of your life and increasing your efficiency.

Here are four ways that tablets can improve your workflow.

Access and Cost

One of the annoyances I find in using a laptop in a meeting is the length of time to get the device started and get into the application I need. Since the iPad came out in 2010, our family rarely uses a laptop for browsing the Internet unless we are already on the computer and using it for research.

Accessibility has also been improved for all different learning styles with the introduction of tablets. If you require bigger text for reading, voice-over to read instructions and accessibility shortcuts tablets are able to deliver these options without costing thousands of dollars.

Collaboration

In the age of changing ‘digital work habits’ being able to improve collaboration is a key part to our daily work lives. Ever tried to collaborate while sitting around a laptop and struggle to see the screen?

A laptop is very much a personal tool, handing over access to someone’s laptop is very different to a tablet where it seems to be a more shareable device.

Sharing Information

With many tablets you can quickly share information either through Bluetooth technology or via AirDrop (iOS), Chromecast (Android), Play To (Windows Phone) and other manufacturer-specific features. For example it is much easier to hold up a tablet and share photos, videos and ideas rather than hold up a laptop (you need to be sitting down or have the screen projected via a VGA projector or TV).

Some examples include someone in the property sector showing digital portfolios of their properties, and then accessing Google maps to share with clients. This not only saves paper and gives clients better access to information, but also demonstrates professionalism in today’s digital world.

A world of apps

Currently the Google Play Store (Android devices), Apple iTunes Store (iOS) and Windows Phone Store (Windows devices) have over 1.8 million apps for purchase (either free or at a cost). More software companies are realising that the future is definitely mobile and apps are being developed for both tablets and smartphones. Whatever you use a computer for, you can normally find an app for your tablet that can do the same thing.
When searching for apps to help you with your work, work on these five key ideas:

1. Can you export the information, i.e. as a PDF or an image?
2. Can you bring information into the app? Or is it very one sided?
3. Can you share the information to other platforms, i.e. via email, cloud storage such as Dropbox, Box, iCloud, Google Drive and Evernote?
4. Does it do more than one thing? Try and find an app that fulfils a few different functions, unless you are looking to complete a very specific task.
5. How many in-app purchases do you need to buy in order to have the app at full capacity? Some apps are free, but then require you to spend twenty dollars in order to access all features.

Tablets sound great, but how do I choose one?

Three key things to look at when purchasing a tablet for either personal or business use:
1. Cost – There are some reasonable tablets to buy depending on exactly what you want the table to be able to do. Also take into account what features you would like to use on the tablet.
2. Operating system: If you struggle sometimes with new technology, stay with the same platform as your smartphone.
3. Accessories – what can you use with the device? Are there many external keyboards that pair with these tablets? Styluses? Or even cases that fit the tablet?

Running my business from my iPad for a month back in 2013 proved just how many tasks I could get completed. Not all things will be suitable for a tablet device, but it will make a positive difference to your workflow.

If you want to improve your workflow, Leaders in Heels is currently running a competition to win a Nokia Lumia 2520 Tablet and Nokia Power Keyboard valued at AU$1080 (see featured image)! The competition is open worldwide and entries close 28th February, 2015 (Sydney, Australia EST) so get in FAST! Click here for your chance to win.


The seating arrangements that you’re managing and going through on a daily basis in your company have a much bigger impact on the success or failure of events than you might imagine at first glance.

Whether it’s a business lunch, brainstorming session or employment interview, the bottom line is the same: there are rules of seating conduct that can effect drastic benefits in outcomes if followed.

What this means for you as a success-oriented woman (or man) in the workplace is that there are both good and bad ways in which you and those you meet with can arrange yourselves in a business setting.

Luckily, reading this, and this excellent infographic that summarizes things in a more visual way, from the people at Seats & Stools, will ensure a much better chance of conducting your different business meetings well.

Here are the 4 rules of good business seating:

1. Conducting Interviews Effectively

Person-to-Person
In one-on-one interviews, the best arrangements are those which nurture easy communication and intimacy between both sides of the table, interviewee and interviewer. What this means is that the two should be seated across from each other at the narrowest part of a table, should be at equal chair height and should maintain regular eye contact.

Furthermore, if you happen to be the interviewer, offer the interviewee their seat first as a gesture of friendly courtesy.

Group Interviews
In the case of group interviews with several people interviewing one person, all of the same rules that apply to one-on-one situations should stay in effect but with the addition of group oriented protocols. These are, all interviewers should introduce themselves in order of relevance, the interviewee should afterwards introduce him or herself to the entire group and all parties should maintain well balanced eye contact while actually speaking and listening.

Furthermore, the table in both one-on-one meetings and group sessions should be kept free of personal belongings and other clutter.

2. Brainstorming Sessions

During brainstorming sessions, things should be kept as comfortably informal and open as possible. This is done by fostering intimacy and mutual confidence in self-expression.

Practically speaking, what this means is a focus on small groups, keeping dominant personalities separated from each other and letting no one person dominate the opinions of others by encouraging everyone to speak freely and regularly. Furthermore, a brainstorming session should avoid, when possible, the presence of executive supervisors and other high company authority figures in order to minimize employee shyness at putting forth their ideas.

Some Further Tips

  • Avoid tables altogether for an even more informally comfortable setting
  • Keep pomp and hierarchical protocol to a minimum for the sake of creative expressiveness, which always thrives best under informal conditions.
  • Ask all participants to avoid using communication electronics during a meeting of any kind

REVISED breuerchairsbusinessseatingguide1

3. Presentations

Four main presentation types exist and each has its distinct best practices

  1. Single Speaker Meeting
    In a theater style, semicircle seating arrangement, the speaker is kept close to the audience and all of them are able to enjoy more proximity to the speaker This will facilitate better attentiveness, more communication between speaker and audience and an easier ability to be heard by all those attending.
  2. Co-Presenter
    With a co-presenter on hand, the same audience/podium setup will apply but some additional rules also apply: Both speakers should stay on stage, both speakers should have coordinated well beforehand about who speaks when and under what queues (this will avoid a lot of possible confusion), and each speaker should remain silent and avoid distracting the audience while the other is actually talking.
  3. Panel Presentation
    In the case of panel meetings, you’ll have several speakers arranged to take turns speaking before an audience. In these cases, a moderator should be on hand to keep everything organized and this moderator should remain aloof of the actual presentation while always being ready to intervene if order needs to be restored.
  4. Sales Meetings
    If you’re going to be doing a sales meeting, whether it should have a single presenter or multiple speakers, either should be arranged before a seated audience that’s comfortable, close and willing to listen. This will make them pay more attention to the sales pitch and in turn, your closing rates will go up.

4. Dealing with Business Lunches

The best seating placement for a business lunch is one in which those who attend sit close to each other, feel and intimate, comfortable setting and are sitting corner to corner from one another whenever possible instead of across the table.

This will apply to lunches with just two attendees or larger meetings with several people (though no business lunch should have more than 4 or 5 attendees in total). Furthermore, the noise level at a business lunch should be low enough for everyone to talk easily, so also choose the location (restaurant, lounge) carefully based on this.

Post and infographic supplied courtesy of Matt Zajechowski via Seat & Stools.

Featured photo credit: Grant Wickes via photopin cc

 


No doubt some of you have children who can’t remember life without smartphones and tablets. But the question is, how do we, as parents, manage this shift in their lives to the online world? What should we be aware of, and how can we keep our children safe? Leaders in Heels had a chat with Dr. Justin Coulson, a parenting expert who is also well clued-in to this new and evolving digital landscape.

These days, it’s common to see young toddlers playing with tablets and smartphones. What kind of limits and boundaries do you think parents should be placing on their children’s use of technology?

To sum up, parents might consider limiting children’s use of devices when their children show an inability to let go of their screen time, or choose not to engage in physical activities, or social activity offline.Technology is becoming increasingly integrated with our lives – both for adults and for children. In the recent Safeguarding the Future of Digital Australia in 2025 report from Intel Security, 16% of Australians indicated being uncomfortable with the increasingly dominant role of technology in our lives and around a third of parents were unsure of how they felt about the increasing pervasiveness of devices. A further one third of people were genuinely concerned about safety and security associated with the technological changes we are seeing. These issues strike at the heart of what is and is not ok for children, and they are things parents worry about a lot.

It’s challenging to give a blanket statement regarding what kind of limits and boundaries we ought to place on our kids’ tech use though. It depends a great deal on their age. Experts agree that children under 2 shouldn’t have any screen time, kids up to 5 should only have a half-hour per day, and from 5-12 it shouldn’t be more than an hour. That’s TV, computer, phone, tablet… the lot! And it’s meant to be under 2 hours for teens! But why are they using the devices? The broader context matters to some degree.

In general I like the expert’s standards, but I think we need to think carefully before we get too militant about them. Similarly, we need to be wise enough to know when to say “when” as well. If our children are using technology to do useful things or for appropriate levels of ‘down’ time, then we should take that into account. But at the same time we want to balance the cyber-world with physical activity and in-person contact.

It’s probably also worth pointing out that our children don’t draw distinctions between the online and offline worlds like we do. To them, it’s all one world!

To sum up, parents might consider limiting children’s use of devices when their children show an inability to let go of their screen time, or choose not to engage in physical activities, or social activity offline. If children are infants and toddlers I’d advise against ANY screen time. And for pre-schoolers and children in the early school years keep it to a minimum. They don’t NEED it. And they are unlikely to get left behind if they don’t know how to play Club Penguin, Candy Crush, or Fruit Ninja.

Cyberbullying has increasingly come into the spotlight lately, with many parents only discovering it’s happening to their kids long after the fact. How would you suggest parents keep an eye on their children’s online activities without being too overbearing?

It’s so critical to keep communication channels open. Kids can get defensive about these things, so it is really important that they don’t fear getting in trouble.The first and last answer to this is that we build a strong relationship with our children and communicate consistently. We want to watch out for cyberbullying at both ends – as perpetrator and as victim. When children are young I think monitoring is central to our strategy. When we spot something on our timeline or on theirs that we think is concerning, we can use that as a platform for conversation.

As parents get older there is less cocooning, and more deference. But our children should know we are ‘friends’, and expect that we’ll monitor. (Note, monitoring is different to snooping.) I also encourage parents to talk with their children about cyberbullying incidents that make headlines. Ask them questions about whether any friends have had cyberbullying issues. Have they been perpetrator or victim? How did it affect them? How did it affect others? What else could have happened? How could it be avoided? And ask them whether they have ever had such things occur to them, and to talk about what they would do if it happened to them or someone close.

It’s so critical to keep communication channels open. Kids can get defensive about these things, so it is really important that they don’t fear getting in trouble. Rather, the process is about teaching and keeping them safe.

Additionally, be familiar with the apps your child uses. Talk about why they use them and how they use them. Get them to teach you about them. And if you have concerns about them (particularly in relation to snapchat, ask.fm, kik, and others), work out how they can be safe – either by deleting the app, refusing to respond to messages from unknown addresses, or doing a ‘friend cull’.

Finally, how do you see the increasing popularity of video games (and video gaming parents!) influencing this generation of children?

Gaming is addictive – of that there is no question. But it’s also fun, and it’s how many children and adults choose to relax and spend their recreation time. As long as gaming does not interfere with a person’s capacity to function and contribute, I think this is a development that we simply need to accept and work with.

Featured Image: GSCSNJ

Dr. Justin Coulson is a parenting and childhood expert who runs the Happy Families blog with tips on parenting. He’s been featured on TV shows such as The Today Show and The Project, as well as various radio programs. He was interviewed here as a spokesperson for the Intel Safeguarding the Future of Digital Australia in 2025 report.


117 entrepreneurs + 10 days of electrifying business and life experiences + Antarctica = A once in a lifetime business experience!

Fire on Ice, Entrepreneurs in Antarctica during 25 January to 4 February 2015 inaugurated by The UNStoppables Club promises to be a once in a lifetime, unique experience for entrepreneurs looking to create and engage with each other, access life and business opportunities, be inspired to set and achieve challenging goals and form strategic alliances.

Leaders in Heels sat down to chat with Julio De Laffitte, Founder of the UNStoppables on all things Fire on Ice and why you should pack your bags for this trip.

1. Why did you choose Antarctica as the destination? What qualities about this destination make it suitable for an entrepreneur event?
Antarctica is at the edge of the world, and we want to take entrepreneurs to the “edge” of their thinking, as we believe there is a new conversation seeking to emerge. The people I know who have been to Antarctica, returned inspired and powerful. All of this makes it perfectly suited for this event, as we seek to challenge the UNstoppables Community to play a bigger game.Antarctica is at the edge of the world, and we want to take entrepreneurs to the “edge” of their thinking, as we believe there is a new conversation seeking to emerge

2. Can you tell us in your own words what inspired you to start this event?
It all started with an initial desire to take a group of amazing people, somewhere amazing to start a process of exploring our service to humanity and manifest our true legacy. Whenever I am around friends or colleagues that have businesses, there is a fantastic energy and I knew that if we could create this event, the results would be life changing and inspiring for the actual participants and by default to the planet.

3. What are you personally hoping the participants will get out of this trip?
I hope they get whatever is seeking to emerge for them. I want them to truly connect with their legacy, (especially if it still is at an embryonic stage) why they are here and what is their life’s purpose and how this all connects with and manifests through their business.

I believe that entrepreneurs are wired differently; that “wiring” is what we seek to explore together. Each person will teach and learn as we create this to be peer to peer. Just imagine if you had 117 people like that, becoming aware of the fragility of the planet, using their business acumen to collaborate, to grow to make more profit… however profit with purpose and true social consciousness where others get to win.

4. What type of people are you looking to come on this trip? For example, start ups, established businesses?
Both! We are seeking to have a great mix of entrepreneurs in various stages of their journey, as well as some investment and venture capital partners so that we can have “old money” meet with “new ideas” and vice versa. We have some of the most amazing facilitators and thought leaders to get the most out of this for those who choose to come.

We don’t want people that would struggle financially to be there… in other words if one cannot see the value of being on a trip like this with other amazing people, then that person should not come.

5. What do you think is the most important quality that makes a female entrepreneur successful?
If we had more women in leadership quite honestly the planet would not be in the mess it is in. Women have the ability to be tough and to be caring all at once.

The most important quality for female entrepreneurs I have noticed over the years are: To have a voice, internal permission to say as it is, a defined mission and not trying to be a guy simply because the world is desperate for genuine female energy.

“Unstoppable with great internal permission for success.”

6. Tell us about a similar trip you may have undertaken that led you to create the business you have now?
I have been to the Galapagos, Egypt, Rio and I did this with amazing groups of friends and entrepreneurs and I guess in some way this was part of the process of creating the Unstoppables Community and the Antarctica project. Often people who are very successful are very busy too, not because of diary commitments but because they want to drink all the juice life has to offer.

We noticed that when these people get together… it goes off. Real opportunities get created and the power to deliver it is at hand. So it gets done.

Image credit: Quark expeditions

Julio De Laffitte
Julio. In the Park. Business suitJulio is the founder of UNStopabbles a meeting ground based on a series of gatherings for those entrepreneurs celebrating what is truly important in life. Fire on Ice, Entrepreneurs in Antarctica is the first event of its kind being together female entrepreneurs to engage and create business opportunities as well as consider the impact on the environment. Visit the UNStoppables to learn more about Fire on Ice.