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    • By STF News
      The New York Mets announced Samsung Electronics America as the ballpark’s official display and technology solutions partner, signing a multi-year deal to deliver a complete transformation of the famous ballpark’s screens to create an interactive fan experience like never before. Samsung – a leader in Digital Signage innovation – will bring the Mets vision of creating a one-of-a-kind ballpark to life with its unique portfolio of displays, content management platform and services.
       
      “Baseball is one of America’s great historical pastimes and thanks to cutting-edge display- and data-driven innovation, we are ushering in a new, exciting era that transforms the ballpark experience and brings fans into the game like never before,” said Harry Patz Jr., Senior Vice President and General Manager, Display Division, Samsung Electronics America. “Technology is central to the way fans enjoy sports, and we are thrilled to bring Samsung’s full display portfolio, solutions and expertise to this new era of fandom.”
       

       
      From the moment they arrive on property to the final out, fans will experience gameday in a whole new way. Among the enhancements for 2022 that are expected include new ribbon boards and more than 1,300 LCD screens throughout the ballpark to lead fans to the shortest lines and ensure they don’t miss a single pitch. A new larger and enhanced centerfield scoreboard will be installed for fans’ enjoyment for the 2023 season at Citi Field.
       
      “We are excited and proud to partner with such a worldwide leader and iconic brand as Samsung,” said Mets Executive Vice President and Chief Revenue Officer Jeff Deline. “Like Samsung, the Mets have a very loyal and passionate fan base, and the implementation of this state-of-the-art technology is going to provide an enhanced experience and environment for millions of fans that come to Citi Field for many years.”
       
       
      IMMERSIVE DISPLAY TECHNOLOGY & SOLUTIONS
      As the complete design and build partner for the Citi Field project, Samsung will deploy the full breadth of its display portfolio and technology solutions throughout the ballpark to create the first connected venue in Major League Baseball.
       
      “Samsung has a rich tradition of innovation and purpose-built technology. Over a two-year period, we’ll transform a once static signage environment to an all-digital experience,” said Mark Quiroz, Vice President Product Marketing, Display Division, Samsung Electronics America. “By seamlessly weaving display technology and sensors into the existing environment, Samsung will create a gateway for connectivity at Citi Field for both the operators and the fans.”
       
      “Our partnership with Samsung is a significant investment from our owner Steve Cohen to bring the most state-of-the-art technology to the ballpark and provide our fans an even better experience at Citi Field,” said Mets Chief Technology Officer Mark Brubaker. “The quality of these upgrades and integration into the daily experience for our fans make Citi Field an industry leader when it comes to the most innovative technological displays.”
       
       
      WHAT FANS CAN EXPECT

       
      Built for the future, the ballpark upgrade – one of the largest single projects in all professional sports – is slated to take place over the span of two years and will make Citi Field the most technologically advanced ballpark in the major leagues. When complete, Citi Field will feature:
       
      More than 1,300 LCD screens and 4,000 square feet of direct view LED screens in public spaces, enhancing the fan experience at every touch point and even alerting them when their team merchandise is ready for pick up A ballpark-wide IPTV system that will carry nearly 100 channels of sports and entertainment content Double the number of slow-motion replay systems and three times as many cameras for increased game coverage An enhanced and fully upgraded scoreboard to display the latest LED technology and handle 4K video  
      An iconic landmark and historic symbol of New York City, Citi Field will welcome fans to experience one of America’s favorite pastimes like never before through Samsung innovations. The multi-year technology upgrade is scheduled to begin in 2022.
      View the full article
    • By STF News
      Adaptive Scalable Texture Compression (ASTC) is an advanced lossy texture compression format, developed by Arm and AMD and released as royalty-free open standard by the Khronos Group. It supports a wide range of 2D and 3D color formats with a flexible choice of bitrates, enabling content creators to compress almost any texture asset, using a level of compression appropriate to their quality and performance requirements.
      ASTC is increasingly becoming the texture compression format of choice for mobile 3D applications using the OpenGL ES and Vulkan APIs. ASTC’s high compression ratios are a perfect match for the mobile market that values smaller download sizes and optimized memory usage to improve energy efficiency and battery life.

      ASTC 2D Color Formats and Bitrates
      astcenc 2.0
      The ‘astcenc’ ASTC compression tool was first developed by Arm while ASTC was progressing through the Khronos standardization process seven years ago. astcenc has become widely used as the de facto reference encoder for ASTC, as it leverages all format features, including the full set of available block sizes and color profiles, to deliver high-quality encoded textures that are possible when effectively using ASTC’s flexible capabilities.
      Today, Arm is delighted to announce astcenc 2.0! This is a major update which provides multiple significant improvements for middleware and content creators.
      Apache 2.0 Open Source License
      The original astcenc software was released under an Arm End User License Agreement. To make it easier for developers to use, adapt, and contribute to astcenc development, including integration of the compressor into application runtimes, Arm relicensed the astcenc 1.X source code on GitHub in January 2020 under the standard Apache 2.0 open source license.
      The new astcenc 2.0 source code is now also available on GitHub under Apache 2.0.
      Compression Performance
      astcenc 1.X emphasized high image quality over fast compression speed. Some developers have told Arm they would love to use astcenc for its superior image quality, but compression was too slow to use in their tooling pipelines. The importance of this was reflected in the recent ASTC developer survey organized by Khronos where developer responses rated compression speed above image quality in the list of factors that determine texture format choices.
      For version 2.0, Arm reviewed the heuristics and quality refinement passes used by the astcenc compressor—optimizing those that were adding value and removing those that simply didn’t justify their added runtime cost. In addition, hand-coded vectorized code was added to the most compute intensive sections of the codec, supporting SSE4.2 and AVX2 SIMD instruction sets.
      Overall, these optimizations have resulted in up to 3x faster compression times when using AVX2, while typically losing less than 0.1 dB PSNR in image quality. A very worthwhile tradeoff for most developers.

      astcenc 2.0 - Significantly Faster ASTC Encoding
      Command Line Improvements
      The tool now supports a clearer set of compression modes that directly map to ASTC format profiles exposed by the Khronos API support and API extensions.
      Textures compressed using the LDR compression modes (linear or sRGB) will be compatible with all hardware implementing OpenGL ES 3.2, the OpenGL ES KHR_texture_compression_astc_ldr extension, or the Vulkan ASTC optional feature.
      Textures compressed using the HDR compression mode will require hardware implementing an appropriate API extension, such as KHR_texture_compression_astc_hdr.
      In addition, astcenc 2.0 now supports commonly requested input and output file formats:
      Loading LDR images in BMP, JPEG, PNG, and TGA formats Loading HDR images in OpenEXR and Radiance HDR formats Loading compressed textures in the “.astc” file format provided by astcenc, and the DDS and KTX container formats Storing LDR images into BMP, PNG, and TGA formats Storing HDR images into OpenEXR and Radiance HDR formats Storing compressed texturesinto the “.astc” file format provided by astcenc, and the DDS or KTX container formats Core Codec Library
      Finally, the core codec is now separable from the command line front-end logic, enabling the astcenc compressor to be integrated directly into applications as a library.
      The core codec library interface API provides a programmatic mechanism to manage codec configuration, texture compression, and texture decompression. This API enables use of the core codec library to process data stored in memory buffers, leaving file management to the application. It supports parallel processing for compression of a single image with multiple threads or compressing multiple images in parallel.
      Using astcenc 2.0
      You can download astcenc 2.0 on GitHub today, with full source code and pre-built binaries available for Windows, macOS, and Linux hosts.
      For more information about using the tool, please refer to the project documentation:
      Getting started: learn about the high-level operation of the compressor. Format overview: learn about the ASTC data format and how the underlying encoding works. Efficient encoding: learn about using the command line to effectively compress textures, and the encoding and sampling needed to get functional equivalents to other texture formats that exist on the market today. Arm have also published an ASTC guide, which gives an overview of the format and some of the available tools, including astcenc .
      Arm ASTC Guide: an overview of ASTC and available ASTC tools. If you have any questions, feedback, or pull requests, please get in touch via the GitHub issue tracker or the Arm Mali developer community forums:
      https://github.com/ARM-software/astc-encoder https://community.arm.com/graphics/ Khronos® and Vulkan® are registered trademarks, and ANARI™, WebGL™, glTF™, NNEF™, OpenVX™, SPIR™, SPIR-V™, SYCL™, OpenVG™ and 3D Commerce™ are trademarks of The Khronos Group Inc. OpenXR™ is a trademark owned by The Khronos Group Inc. and is registered as a trademark in China, the European Union, Japan and the United Kingdom. OpenCL™ is a trademark of Apple Inc. and OpenGL® is a registered trademark and the OpenGL ES™ and OpenGL SC™ logos are trademarks of Hewlett Packard Enterprise used under license by Khronos. All other product names, trademarks, and/or company names are used solely for identification and belong to their respective owners.
      View the full blog at its source
    • By STF News
      Our Best of Galaxy Store Awards series highlights publishers who won awards at our second annual Best of Galaxy Store Awards ceremony at the Samsung Developer Conference. These publishers represent the top performing apps of the year, pushing the boundaries of innovation, quality, and creativity.
      Next in our series, we sat down with Cogul Planet, the winners of not one, but two awards: Best Themes Brand Collaboration and Best Themes Designer (Big Brand). The Cogul Planet team shared their inspiration for their MLB Themes, technical challenges they faced, and advice for designers who want to have a successful Galaxy Themes business. Check out the interview below!
      What inspired your idea for the MLB Themes?
      There are many ways for a fan to cheer on his or her favorite team or favorite player. Some of those ways are to visit a game in the stadium, buy a uniform, cap, or purchase other accessories. They can also participate as members of team clubs. Fans interact in these ways because they want to feel a sense of belonging. They want to feel that they contribute or that they belong to the team dynamic.
      Taking that into consideration, we thought that applying a sense of belonging into the fans' mobile devices, which they check and use nonstop throughout the day, could be a new way for a fan to be part of the fandom as well as maximize their sense of belongingness and satisfaction.
      Although there are many online wallpapers of MLB teams and players with some available on the MLB site, we wanted to take the next step and provide a more advanced experience to the users by not only providing wallpapers, but also designing icons, buttons, animations, and sounds.
      How would you describe your approach to design?
      First, we like to design themes that are easy to use from a user perspective. Even if a theme is filled with pretty and cool images, if it doesn’t have good legibility or doesn't harmonize overall, the user will get tired of it.
      From a designer’s point of view, we want to communicate the topic of a theme clearly and harmonically so the theme stands out among many other themes. Creating a theme that can capture both design and readability is our main approach to creating themes.
      What is your process for designing Galaxy Themes?
      The first step in the process of designing a theme is to have a concept meeting with the designers and the planning department. The meeting will occur two to three times each week. During the meeting, seasonal issues and trends of major countries are discussed. Meeting participants recommend concept production ideas. We always try to maximize each designer’s individuality or merit by applying their ideas and supporting them for an optimized result.
      Once the concept is set, each person will sketch their ideas and share them with each other. After ideas and sketches are shared, drafts are made. In case of different feelings and aesthetics among two drafts, we choose one and proceed with the work on the editor. The final theme reflects more individuality than the team, but the team collaborates a lot in the production process.
      What is the most important thing to consider when designing Galaxy Themes?
      It’s important to attract consumers’ attention with a pretty and cool design, but one of the things we think about most when designing is legibility. Especially the home screen, the dial screen, and the message screen that are frequently used, and the purpose of their use is clear, so if poor readability interferes with that purpose, users will feel uncomfortable using their smartphone and will find a different theme soon.
      What is the biggest technical challenge you face as a Galaxy Themes designer?
      At first, video lock screens were not supported and as technology evolved, it was difficult to learn new skills by using a video production program in addition to a lock screen produced by a theme studio. To create a theme that is more complete with maximized quality, designers need more skills and to always be learning new skills to adapt to advanced technologies.
      What design elements do you think all good Galaxy Themes have in common?
      Popular and pretty Galaxy Themes have a clear concept and are clearly visible for users. When users use various functions of their device, they can experience the detailed work which gives them a fun and complete feeling. For example, we think you bought a good theme when the details of the lock screen pattern, Iris design, buttons, switches, and keyboards feel alive. These themes are legible and comfortable to use.
      How do you keep your Galaxy Theme designs fresh and relevant?
      We do a lot of research to understand the tastes of Galaxy Theme users and to create new and fresh themes that haven't been seen in the traditional Theme Store. We use new concepts or mix and match two categories to create something brand new and fresh.
      What advice do you have for designers who are starting out to have a successful Galaxy Themes business?
      If you study the tastes and minds of Galaxy Theme users, you can come up with a variety of themes that suit your individuality. It’s as important to be up to date with trends, markets, and seasonal events of the Theme Store as it is to create a new theme.
      How did it feel to be recognized with two awards?
      I felt proud and responsible to win two awards among countless sellers. Since becoming a member of the Theme Store in 2016, Cogul Planet has launched nearly 20,000 applications so far and has been working hard to create new trends and segments such as Ebichu, Siba, MLB and “Good job today.” I believe our contribution both quantitatively and qualitatively to the Theme Store was recognized and rewarded.
      In the future, we will continue to create many good and fresh themes so that our users can have a better and easier experience using our Galaxy Themes!
      Thanks to Cogul Planet, Inc. for sharing their insights on the complexity of theme designs, how to approach design thinking, and how new designers can get started building Galaxy Themes for the Theme Store! If you're on a Samsung device, check out their designs and MLB themes.
      Follow us @samsung_dev for more interviews with Best of Galaxy Store Awards 2019 winners.
      View the full blog at its source



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