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Meet Layar: Pambo Paschalides

Chris Cameron November 5, 2010

If you hadn’t noticed our rapidly expanding list of job openings, Layar is growing, and fast! With that, we have lots of new people around the office - myself included. I’m Chris and I’m brand new to Amsterdam and to Layar. I have been brought on board as Web Producer, so right here on the blog is where you will find me most often.

With all the new people around the office, we thought it would be great to let our community learn more about the people that work here and the experiences they all have in doing so. As I’ve realized already, working at Layar is like having a big family. Everyone is very friendly and caring. So to help you better know the Layar family, we are beginning a series of blogs profiling each employee in the office.

This week is the first entry in the series, and the lucky Layar employee that drew the short straw is Pambo Paschalides!

Pambo, who helps support Layar developers, has been working at Layar for just a few months. Pambo, 27, was born and raised on the “sunny island of Cyprus” in the Mediterranean and is the second of three children. He has an older sister, 29, who is a doctor in Athens, and a younger brother, 25, who is studying Civil Engineering in Nottingham, UK. His parents still live “happily in Cyprus,” he says.

Here’s a brief Q&A I had with Pambo.

What do you like about working at Layar?

Pambo: I was really surprised at how relaxed the environment is and how approachable people are. From day one I felt at home, and having worked at a couple of Dutch companies in the past, I didn’t think that was really possible. One thing that I still can’t get used to is eating sandwiches for lunch. I think it’s also really funny that Dutchies drink milk during lunch. I thought these things were reserved for breakfast!

What did you do before joining Layar?

Pambo: Before joining Layar I worked as a research assistant for Professor Tanenbaum at the Vrije Universiteit, as a System Engineer at Intralot NL, and as a Software Engineer at Hyves. My work at Hyves can be seen at, I worked on the backend of the trending topics system.

What are your interests outside of Layar and technology?

Pambo: I’m a big fan of classic rock and metal music. I’m really crazy about anything from the 70s. There’s nothing like discovering an old vinyl, or a band that probably disbanded 35 years ago, but before that they released a couple of cool records. I would say my favorite bands are Rush, Rainbow and Megadeth. If you like any of them, can we hang out sometime? As embarrassing as it may sound, a movie that changed my life is “School of Rock”, with Jack Black. I rarely watch movies. But I do love documentaries about music.

So you’ve only been in The Netherlands for a few years. How has life in Amsterdam been different from back home?

Pambo: For some reason, everyone thinks I’m Italian. Sometimes I think that for North Europeans, dark hair means Italy. When I was working at Hyves I was so fed up with people coming to me and talking about Italy that I printed a t-shirt saying “Ik kom niet uit Italie.” It was a pity that even like that, it still wasn’t clear I am not Italian. Some girl came up to me once and said “I know a few words in Italian,” and my response was “That’s a shame, because I don’t know any.”

Fun Facts About Pambo

  • Pambo’s full name is Charalambos (Χαράλαμπος) which means that he “shines of happiness.”

  • Like all Cypriot boys, Pambo served in the  army after high-school for 26 months.

  • Pambo studied in Greece, earning a Bachelor’s and a Master’s degree in Computer Engineering. He is currently working on a second Master’s in Software Engineering.

  • His favorite foods include Indian, Italian and Greek.

  • Al Bundy from Married with Children is his favorite TV personality, and his favorite show is South Park.

  • He hates rude and grumpy people.


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Introducing: The month of Layar Creation Tools

Chris Cameron November 4, 2010

It’s November and here at Layar it’s a special month because we are taking a moment to shine the spotlight on some really fun tools: Layar Creation Tools. What are these, you ask? Layar Creation Tools - or LCTs as we’ve started to call them around the office - are exactly what they sound like: tools that help with the creation of Layar content.

Not everyone has super-technical code-monkey abilities, but a lot of people have great ideas for content they would like to see in augmented reality. These tools make it easy for anyone to quickly place information into a layer and see it augmenting their reality within minutes.

This month, we will be showcasing some of these Layar Creation Tools here on the Layar Blog. We will provide an overview of how they work, who they are intended for, their pros and cons, etc. If you find yourself wishing you could create your own Layar content, by the end of the month you should know how to do just that. Here are some of the tools we are looking into:

Are we missing any? If you know of some great LCTs you’d like to see featured on the blog, please leave us a comment with your suggestions!! If you have experience with any of these tools, please leave us a comment as well with your thoughts on them and how you might change or improve them.

We’re excited to share some of these great tools with you all, so keep an eye on the blog for more coming soon. Happy LCT Month!


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Layar announces Layar Stream: search and discovery for Augmented Reality

maurice groenhart May 7, 2010

Amsterdam, May 7th 2010. Today Layar announces Layar Stream, revealing immediately what Augmented Reality (AR) content is available around you. In the new medium of Augmented Reality there are many great experiences waiting to be discovered. With the continuously increasing amount of AR content, discovery becomes a challenge. Layar Stream solves this.

Layar Stream generates a stream out of the 1.2 million augmented objects served daily by Layar. The ranking is based on a proprietary algorithm using contextual elements like location, usage and popularity of content in all published layers. Layar Stream holds information about the type of available content and whether it contains 3D objects, images, video or audio. Users can optimize their stream by filtering on keywords, categories and distance.

The Layar Stream is viewable without having to hold the phone up and moving it around. This enables easy discovery of what is around you in everyday situations. When selecting a specific object the layer opens and can be seen in the Augmented Reality view.

Raimo van der Klein, CEO: “Layar Stream is the necessary building block to make Augmented Reality part of every day life. There is a whole augmented world out there that is waiting to be discovered. You just need to tap into Layar Stream”

Today all layer publishers are invited to have their Augmented Reality content indexed by Layar Stream. Layar Stream will be available in the next release of the Layar Reality Browser, to be launched later this month on Android with iPhone following soon after.

About Layar Layar is the world’s leading Augmented Reality Platform on mobile. The Layar Reality Browser has more than 1.6 million users and serves 1.2 million augmented objects every day. The browser comes pre-installed on tens of millions of phones from leading handset manufacturers and carriers by the end of the year. Over 600 layers are published on the Layar Platform with over 2000 in development. These layers are developed by the global community of 3000 Layar publishers and producers, and by leading brands and agencies. Layar is located in Amsterdam, The Netherlands. The company is VC funded and has 32 employees.

The free Layar Reality Browser is available on Android devices and iPhone 3GS. The Layar Platform is available for anyone to create their own Augmented Reality experiences on.

Layar, see the world


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