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Alia on working with Sanjay Leela Bhansali, Salman: They are magical together

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Alia Bhatt has her bag full with unusual and interesting projects. This year, the actor announced that she will be a part of two big films — RRR by Baahubali fame director SS Rajamouli and Inshaallah, a Sanjay Leela Bhansali-directed film starring Salman Khan.

Ever since the announcement of the SLB project, people have been talking about the unusual pairing of Alia and Salman Khan. Recently, in an interview with Mid-day, the actor opened up on the subject.

“Bhansali is a visionary. People are too quick to judge. There is a plan in place and a reason behind the [unusual] casting. I am thrilled to be working with Salman. Even I never thought this combination [working with Khan and Bhansali] is possible. It will be an intriguing journey and Salman is genuinely warm and kind. They are a magical duo together and I am blessed to be in it,” Alia told Mid-day.

 

At present, Alia is busy promoting the Abhishek Varman directorial Kalank in which she features alongside Varun Dhawan, Sonakshi Sinha, Aditya Roy Kapur, Madhuri Dixit and Sanjay Dutt.

The 26-year-old has worked with Varun in several films. She said having Varun on Kalank was extremely comforting for her because her character and the film were difficult to work upon.

“Abhishek and Varun are my best friends. Varun makes me feel comfortable at work and that’s essential because this is a difficult film. There is moral support when work gets overwhelming. I was shooting Brahmastra and Kalank simultaneously, some days were just impossible to get by. It’s not easy to live up to Abhishek’s vision.

Roop, my character, is a millennial living in the 40s. Her thought process may be evolved, but she is always graceful in her demeanour. We deliberately kept Roop imperfect. I like that because as an actor it’s a challenge to bring out the vulnerabilities of a character. Being perfect all the time is boring and a burden. The climax of the film was draining,” the actor said.

The Karan Johar production venture is all set to hit the screens on April 17.


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Tech-Film

Researchers develop camera to capture polarised light, study atmospheric chemistry

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US scientists have developed a highly compact and portable camera that can capture polarised light, help in study atmospheric chemistry and used to detect camouflaged objects.

Polarisation, the direction in which light vibrates, is invisible to the human eye (but visible to some species of shrimp and insects). But it provides a great deal of information about the objects with which it interacts. Cameras that see polarised light are currently used to detect material stress, enhance contrast for object detection, and analyse surface quality for dents or scratches. The miniature camera — about the size of a thumb — could find a place in the vision systems of autonomous vehicles, onboard planes or satellites to study atmospheric chemistry, or be used to detect camouflaged objects.

“Polarisation is a feature of light that is changed upon reflection off a surface,” said Paul Chevalier from Harvard John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences (SEAS) in the US. “Based on that change, polarisation can help us in the 3D reconstruction of an object, to estimate its depth, texture and shape, and to distinguish man-made objects from natural ones, even if they’re the same shape and colour,” he said. To unlock that powerful world of polarisation, the researchers harnessed the potential of metasurfaces, nanoscale structures that interact with light at wavelength size-scales.

 

“If we want to measure the light’s full polarization state, we need to take several pictures along different polarization directions,” said Noah Rubin, first author of the study. “Previous devices either used moving parts or sent light along multiple paths to acquire the multiple images, resulting in bulky optics. But this approach does not measure the full polarisation state and requires a non-standard imaging sensor.

In this work, we were able to take all of the optics needed and integrate them in a single, simple device with a metasurface,” he added. According to the study, published in the journal Science, the device is about two centimeters in length and no more complicated than a camera on a smartphone. With an attached lens and protective case, the device is about the size of a small lunch box. The researchers tested the camera to show defects in injection-molded plastic objects, took it outside to film the polarisation off car windshields and even took selfies to demonstrate how a polarisation camera can visualise the 3D contours of a face.

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Tech-Film

Fiio M11 High Resolution Lossless Audio Player With Dual-DAC Setup Launched in India

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Chinese audio brand Fiio is known for making some of the best specialised high-resolution audio players in the world, and its products are generally well received by users and experts alike. The latest product to launch in India from the company is the Fiio M11, which is the company’s most advanced high-resolution audio player yet. The Fiio M11 is priced at Rs. 39,990, and features various wired and wireless connectivity options, along with support for most popular high-resolution audio formats.

The Fiio M11 has a dual-DAC setup, with two AKM AK4493 digital-analogue converters powering audio output. The DAC supports 32-bit/ 384kHz high-resolution audio, with various popular file formats supported, including DSD256, DXD, Apple Lossless, AIFF, FLAC, WAV, and WMA lossless. Compressed audio formats such as MP3, OGG, WMA, and AAC are also supported.

Powered by the Samsung Exynos 7872 SoC, the Fiio M11 has a 5.15-inch 18:9 HD-resolution (720×1440-pixel) touch screen for navigation and visual cues. The device also has 3GB of RAM and 32GB of in-built storage, along with support for expandable storage with two microSD card slots, each supporting up to a theoretical 2TB of storage. Fast charging, Wi-Fi audio, and AirPlay are also supported, and the device runs on an Android-based operating system.

 

For wired connectivity, the Fiio M11 allows for headphones and speakers to be connected using the popular 3.5mm plug, but also supports 2.5mm and 4.4mm balanced audio outputs.For wireless connectivity, the device supports popular Bluetooth codecs, including SBC, aptX, aptX HD, and LDAC. Charging and external connectivity is through a USB Type-C port, and the Fiio M11 can be used as a standalone DAC when connected to a compatible device such as a laptop.

The Fiio M11 is available now on Fiio’s official website, and can also be purchased on Amazon. While it does come across as expensive, the device is among the most feature-filled and well-equipped high-resolution audio players you can buy today. For users looking for a more affordable option, the company also has the excellent Fiio M6 available, which is priced at Rs. 14,990.

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Kangana to play a spy

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Actress Kangana Ranaut is set play a spy in the upcoming heroine-centric action thriller,Dhaakad.

“‘Dhaakad’ is an action film and it is (a) big film. For us, it’s like venturing into a genre that is absolutely missing in Hindi films. It is something of a thriller — intriguing and more of like a spy thriller. In the film, my name is Agni. I play a spy,” Kangana said.

The project is helmed by Razneesh “Razy” Ghai.

 

The makers are looking to rope in a leading action director from Hollywood to choreograph the elaborate sequences.

Filming will take place across India, South East Asia, the Middle East and Europe.

“After the success of ‘Manikarnika: The Queen of Jhansi’, it has been proven that audiences across the globe are loving larger than life films with a female hero. ‘Dhaakad’ is not only a benchmark film for my career but will be a turning point for Indian cinema as well,” Kangana said in a statement earlier.

“The film is mounted on a large scale, is one of a kind female-led action film, and is apt for a Diwali release. If it is received well, there will be no looking back for women in Indian cinema.”

Right now, Kangana is gearing up for the release of JudgeMentall Hai Kya, which opens on Friday. JudgeMentall Hai Kya is with Rajkummar Rao, who has earlier worked with Kangana in Queen. Written by Kanika Dhillon and produced by Ekta Kapoor under her banner Balaji Motion Pictures, Judgemantall Hai Kya is directed by Prakash Kovelamudi.

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