Vision Zero has the drive to eliminate road deaths lost its way

first_imgShare on Messenger Walking the city New York aimed to halve traffic fatalities by 2025 by bringing together City Hall, the police department and the Department of Transportation. Although it was the safest city in the US in terms of road deaths and serious injuries, it was on a par with cities in eastern Europe and Latin America.De Blasio announced that speed cameras near schools would start issuing tickets for the first time the day after he stood on that street corner, and police would begin prioritising road crashes. He convinced the state government to lower city traffic speeds, a key factor in road deaths, and targeted the High Injury Network. These “boulevards of death” – state highways doubling as neighbourhood streets, like Northern Boulevard and Queens Boulevard – make up 15% of the road network but account for 60% of pedestrian fatalities.As Kate Fillin-Yeh, strategy director at the National Association of City Transportation Officials, puts it: “Designing 60mph streets didn’t work in a city context, but people didn’t know what better was. The thing we should be thinking about is how many people can we move, not how many cars.”New York’s Vision Zero programme targeted 50 such roads and junctions. Slow zones, speed cameras, street lighting and traffic signals were introduced in areas where data showed they were needed most. The city set up community outreach and worked with taxi organisations.By 2017 road deaths had fallen 28% from 2013 levels, and pedestrian deaths 45%, to the lowest point since records began.Fillin-Yeh says: “If you have a programme focusing on the things that save lives, designing streets to protect people biking and walking, you will have a successful vision zero.” Focusing on education alone, she says, “won’t achieve anything”. Los Angeles: the most traffic deaths in the USWhile New York has some of the lowest traffic death rates in the country, Los Angeles has the highest number of deaths, with a person killed in traffic every 40 hours.In January last year the city’s mayor, Eric Garcetti, announced its first Vision Zero strategy, with a goal of eliminating traffic deaths by 2025. Work would focus on 40 High Injury Network streets, particularly those near schools. Interventions included pedestrian scrambles, painted kerb extensions protected by bollards, and left turn safety improvements.However, things started to unravel. On Temple Street, where 34 people were killed or severely injured within 2.3 miles in eight years, a “road diet” expected to reduce crashes by up to 47% met backlash from residents and drivers. Local city leaders downgraded lane removals to things that wouldn’t interfere with motor traffic: sidewalk repairs, new traffic signals and crosswalks.Road deaths rose rather than falling, increasing 80% in two years. Then state legislators chose to increase speed limits on LA’s High Injury Network roads.Jon Orcutt, who was director of policy at the NYC Department of Transportation from 2007 to 2014 and developed De Blasio’s Vision Zero programme, says: “Los Angeles had no safety policy before Vision Zero, it’s pretty common across the United States. There’s nothing to build on and you have established this really ambitious goal and it’s hard for everyone to figure out what’s going on.”He says local council leaders who did back Vision Zero in LA were left isolated and “hung out to dry” in the face of opposition.Orcutt also expresses his frustration at a lack of ongoing improvement in New York after those initial improvements. “We need leaders to say, ‘This is what we are doing in the city, and you don’t get to say no, and you don’t get to come back on what our technical experts say,’” he says. “That is the power of the mayor – that’s the point of the megaphone you have.” Any city can brand its safety projects ‘Vision Zero’. New York has had success, while LA has failed. London is the latest city to sign up – but local opposition has already blocked the mayor’s flagship pedestrianisation of Oxford StreetWhat is Walking the City week?David Sedaris on his love of city walks features Pedestrians, cyclists and motorists navigate the complicated and confusing intersection of Bay Street and Richmond Street West in Toronto. Photograph: Randy Risling/Toronto Star via Getty New York Mon 17 Sep 2018 08.00 EDT A stolen Tesla automobile wrecked on La Brea Avenue in Los Angeles after a police chase. Photograph: Ted Soqui/Corbis via Getty Images Share on Facebook Walking the city Cities The family of Kevin Flores, who was killed by a car while on his bike, join residents, children, activists and politicians at a March for Safe Streets campaign organized by Transportation Alternatives in Brooklyn, New York .Photograph: Spencer Platt/Getty Facebook London In Los Angeles a person is killed in traffic every 40 hours Vision Zero, a road traffic safety project pioneered by Sweden in 1997, has since been adopted by the likes of Paris, Berlin, Stockholm and state of Victoria in Australia. At its best, it focuses on evidence-based interventions around anything from safer vehicles to safer roads, covering engineering, education and enforcement. However, as any city can call itself or its safety programmes Vision Zero, the results are mixed.US states that adopted Vision Zero saw fatality rates decline 25% faster than the national average from 1997 to 2014. But reducing road deaths in the long term means redesigning roads to restrict motor traffic – and that’s where things get difficult. Facebook “I love the idea of Vision Zero and wish it was implemented,” he says. “The problem is, it becomes a cliche rather than an actual plan.“The fundamental issue in America is that almost anywhere they try to implement Vision Zero, almost everyone in those cities drives. They aren’t willing to be slowed down, they object, and the politicians refuse to do anything that’s going to make drivers angry.”He references Toronto, where the aim was a 20% reduction in the number of pedestrians killed and seriously injured over 10 years. Academics dubbed it a “poor and tragically designed version” of Vision Zero. In June, mayor Sadiq Khan’s flagship pedestrian safety scheme, the pedestrianisation of Oxford Street, was blocked by the local borough, Westminster city council, following local concerns about traffic displacement.This was despite Oxford Street’s poor safety record – with two pedestrians killed and 15 seriously injured between 2014 and 2017.Lloyd Alter, design editor of and architect, sees the physical road changes as crucial in reducing deaths. Pinterest Pinterest Pinterest Plans to pedestrianise Oxford Street have been scrapped. Since you’re here… The scramble crosswalk at Hollywood Blvd and Highland in Los Angeles. Photograph: LADOT Facebook Share on Twitter Share via Email Pinterest Cities is supported by Facebook Topicscenter_img Vision Zero: has the drive to eliminate road deaths lost its way? Shares8585 Laura Laker Support The Guardian Vision Zero: has the drive to eliminate road deaths lost its way? Twitter Policing is too often a major stumbling block for Vision Zero improvements – not least in New York, where 66% of fatal crashes were caused by unsafe speed, driver inattention or distraction, failure to yield, traffic control disregard or drunk driving– in other words, risk-taking behaviour by drivers.Despite overall fatality reductions, between 2013 and 2017 New York hit-and-run collisions resulting in injury increased 14% to more than 5,000. NYPD make an arrest in just 9% of hit-and-run injury cases and less than half of the fatal cases. Meanwhile, NYPD ticketing of cyclists increased 25% from 2016 to 2017: 23,452 summons were issued to cyclists in 2017 alone. In July, state legislators turned off speed cameras in New York, only to reinstate them in autumn after more than 300,000 drivers were logged speeding near schools in two and a half weeks.While the New York police are performing fewer crash investigations, in LA police used “pedestrian sting” operations to catch jaywalkers at busy Metro stations. Streetsblog LA called them “one part of a system that criminalises the poor, especially youth of colour.”Montgomery County in Maryland also has a Vision Zero policy, but perhaps no one told Tom Didone, captain of the traffic division, who called pedestrians “lazy” for not using crosswalks after seven people were killed by vehicles in less than three months. Pinterest Twitter Share via Email Share on WhatsApp “Everybody picks and chooses what they want, and in the end it isn’t Vision Zero at all,” Alter says. He believes Vision Zero needs stronger wording similar to the Stop de Kindermoord movement in 1970s Dutch cities.“We should rename it ‘Stop Murdering Our Kids’: make it real and make it something much stronger, because it’s just lost its meaning,” he says. “When it came over from Sweden it was a plan, it was things that we did, now it’s just a cliche.”Even Sweden has stumbled on the road to zero road deaths, though, and readjusted its target to no more than 220 deaths a year by 2020.Ultimately, says Alter, zero road deaths may not be achievable, “but it is worth having as a goal.”We’re eager to hear your thoughts and experiences of walking in cities. Please share your reflections with us using this form, or on social media with the hashtag #GuardianWalking. Follow us on Facebook, on Twitter and Instagram … we have a small favour to ask. The Guardian will engage with the most critical issues of our time – from the escalating climate catastrophe to widespread inequality to the influence of big tech on our lives. At a time when factual information is a necessity, we believe that each of us, around the world, deserves access to accurate reporting with integrity at its heart.More people are reading and supporting The Guardian’s independent, investigative journalism than ever before. And unlike many news organisations, we have chosen an approach that allows us to keep our journalism accessible to all, regardless of where they live or what they can afford. But we need your ongoing support to keep working as we do.Our editorial independence means we set our own agenda and voice our own opinions. Guardian journalism is free from commercial and political bias and not influenced by billionaire owners or shareholders. This means we can give a voice to those less heard, explore where others turn away, and rigorously challenge those in power.We need your support to keep delivering quality journalism, to maintain our openness and to protect our precious independence. Every reader contribution, big or small, is so valuable. Support The Guardian from as little as $1 – and it only takes a minute. Thank you. London: will local opposition curb scheme?This summer London became the latest global city to announce a Vision Zero programme, focusing on speed reduction, bus and lorry safety and cycling and walking infrastructure, as well as tackling the city’s most dangerous junctions. Bringing together policing, transport and city hall, the target is to eliminate all 2,000 annual road deaths and serious injuries in the city by 2041, with interim targets to reduce them by 65% by 2022.As in LA, London’s plans for safer streets have been dogged by local opposition. Share on LinkedIn We should rename it ‘Stop Murdering Our Kids’: make it real and make it something much strongerLloyd Alter About this content Cities Last modified on Thu 20 Sep 2018 11.59 EDT Twitter Bill de Blasio was two weeks into his term as New York mayor when he stood with weeping parents at the street corner where eight-year-old Noshat Nahian was killed while walking to school and pledged to end the city’s “epidemic” of road deaths.Noshat was crossing the seven-lane Northern Boulevard in Queens with his 11-year-old sister five days before Christmas 2013 when Mauricio Osorio-Palominos, operating an enormous truck on a suspended driving licence, turned left across their path. Noshat was the 11th child under 13 to be killed on the streets of New York that year.The urgent 30-day plan De Blasio ordered became the first Vision Zero policy of a major US city, blazing a trail for mayors around the world to tackle what the World Health Organization calls a “major but neglected global health problem” and which killed 1.25 million people in 2013. In two weeks in late November that year, four New Yorkers were killed by drivers on sidewalks, sparking protests. Twitter Road safety Twitter Share on Facebook Facebook Share on Twitter A traffic jam on Second Avenue, midtown Manhattan. In two weeks in late November 2013 four New Yorkers were killed by drivers on sidewalks. Photograph: Mario Tama/Getty Images Share on Pinterest The Cityscape: get the best of Guardian Cities delivered to you every week, with just-released data, features and on-the-ground reports from all over the world Los Angeles Reuse this contentlast_img read more

Pity poor Kanye West if it takes Donald Trump to make him

first_imgHadley Freeman’s Weekend column ‘Kanye West may be eccentric, but he is just vocalising an attitude that is now fully mainstream.’Photograph: Michael Reynolds/EPA Read more Read more Share via Email @HadleyFreeman Share on Facebook Play Video Share on Twitter Sat 20 Oct 2018 04.00 EDT Since you’re here… Share on Messenger Shares191191 Share on Twitter When I had twins, people kept saying they didn’t know how I coped, and I’d think, “I didn’t know I had a choice.” That’s what I think now. Some people say, sure, keep fighting – but maybe dial it back, ladies? And when I hear this argument I hear the same brain-splitting hammering in my head as when politicians, on the right or left, insist the only way to fight the far-right Brexiters is to appease them. Yeah, give the other side what they want – that’ll show ’em!Instead, I look at all the young women who are so much more politicised than I was at their age. And I look at all the older women who were ready to put their feet up, but are now mad as hell. And I look at all the women who, like me, are exhausted by kids and jobs but will not shut up already. And then I go in harder than before. As US journalist Rebecca Traister writes in her excellent new book Good And Mad, women’s rage has driven important political change, from the suffragettes to #MeToo.Kanye West is right: this is the age of aggrieved men. But women will keep fighting for their rights, because there is no choice. West may be eccentric, but he is just vocalising an attitude that is now fully mainstream. An estimated seven million of us went on women’s marches in 2017, and yet Roe v Wade could be overturned. Women enjoy sexual freedom, and are told they’re to blame for so-called “incels”, or involuntary celibates, furious young men who rage online and in some cases commit violence because they can’t get laid. They talk about sexual harassment, and are told the #MeToo movement has gone “too far”.In February, after two aides left the White House, President Trump tweeted, “People’s lives are being shattered and destroyed by a mere allegation… There is no recovery for someone falsely accused – life and career are gone. Is there no such thing as Due Process?” I am friends with many good Guardian-reading men who would rather club a baby seal than be compared to Trump – and yet in recent months I have often heard variations on the president’s plaint from their own lips. Think of the powerless men, they say! Well, given that one man who bragged he could sexually assault any woman he wanted was elected president, and another, Brett Kavanaugh, who was accused by multiple women of assaulting them, was just put on the supreme court, it looks to me like the men might be… fine? Meanwhile one of Kavanaugh’s accusers, Dr Christine Blasey Ford, is in hiding with her family because of multiple death threats.Has #MeToo gone too far? I’ll take a “no” for 10 points, Bob. The real question is not whether women have gone too far, but how do we keep going? How to keep fighting when the fight seems so hopeless? Reuse this content Share on WhatsApp Donald Trump Support The Guardian In other words, he might be one of the most acclaimed artists of all time, but being in a family with some high-earning women bummed him out a bit. So he looked for something that made him feel like a man again, and that thing was Trump. Feel the pride, founding fathers: America is now merely a macrocosm for the marriage of West and Kim Kardashian.West’s outburst might not have been the most eloquent speech ever delivered in the White House, but it caught the era of new chauvinism, which is really just old chauvinism with added victimhood. What has the Trump presidency been but one long wail of aggrieved masculinity? So maybe West is now just another prat in a MAGA hat, but at least he’s still on the bleeding edge of relevancy. Um, yay? Or maybe just Ye.He also (possibly inadvertently) nailed the double bind women find themselves in: we make a step forward and then comes a backlash that is as vicious as it is – we are told – inevitable, and maybe even – goes the stronger implication – deserved. See this giant orange misogynist now sitting in the White House, women? This is what you get for daring to support a female presidential candidate who used a female pronoun! Share on LinkedIn Share on Facebook Kanye West Sign up to hear about our weekend newspapers A former teacher gets in touch, nostalgic about the past. But I remember things differently Contact author … we have a small favour to ask. The Guardian will engage with the most critical issues of our time – from the escalating climate catastrophe to widespread inequality to the influence of big tech on our lives. At a time when factual information is a necessity, we believe that each of us, around the world, deserves access to accurate reporting with integrity at its heart.More people are reading and supporting The Guardian’s independent, investigative journalism than ever before. And unlike many news organisations, we have chosen an approach that allows us to keep our journalism accessible to all, regardless of where they live or what they can afford. But we need your ongoing support to keep working as we do.Our editorial independence means we set our own agenda and voice our own opinions. Guardian journalism is free from commercial and political bias and not influenced by billionaire owners or shareholders. This means we can give a voice to those less heard, explore where others turn away, and rigorously challenge those in power.We need your support to keep delivering quality journalism, to maintain our openness and to protect our precious independence. Every reader contribution, big or small, is so valuable. Support The Guardian from as little as $1 – and it only takes a minute. Thank you. Topics Hadley Freeman’s Weekend column Hadley Freeman Kanye West Pity poor Kanye West, if it takes Donald Trump to make him feel like a man again #MeToo movement features Kanye says ‘I love this guy right here’ as he walks over and gives Trump a hug – video Last modified on Fri 9 Nov 2018 09.15 EST 1:15 Share via Email Share on Pinterest Hadley Freeman Their wail of aggrieved masculinity is a call to women to keep fighting for their rights I’m a long-term, and by this point longsuffering, Kanye West fan, and part of what’s made him so fascinating is that he, more than any other celebrity, has always caught the zeitgeist. Hell, the man even married a Kardashian, and you can’t get more zeitgeisty than that. Or so I thought, until he popped into the Oval Office last week. The man formerly known as Kanye, who once told the world “George Bush doesn’t care about black people”, is now known as Ye and going around hugging Donald Trump, a man who spent years insisting the first black president wasn’t actually American. Perhaps “Kan” resigned from his name in embarrassment?“I’m married now into a family that, you know… not a lot of male energy going on,” he said, by way of an explanation for his inexplicable support for Jabba the Trump. “[Hillary Clinton’s] campaign ‘I’m With Her’ just didn’t make me feel… like a guy that could play catch with his son. It was something about when I put this [Make America Great Again] hat on, it made me feel like Superman.”last_img read more

Quitting cannabis could lead to better memory and cognition

first_imgShare on LinkedIn US research shows four weeks’ abstinence improved memory, but not attention skills Topics Reuse this content @iansample Ian Sample Science editor Share on Facebook Quitting cannabis could lead to better memory and cognition Shares329329 Share via Email Drugs Share on Twitter Share on Facebook Children Share on Twitter Share on Pinterest Listen Since you’re here…center_img This article is more than 8 months old ‘We see the most dramatic change in memory during the first week,’ said Dr Randi Schuster at Massachusetts General Hospital’s Center for Addiction Medicine.Photograph: Ian Willms/Getty A neuroscientist explains: the need for ‘empathetic citizens’ – podcast … we have a small favour to ask. The Guardian will engage with the most critical issues of our time – from the escalating climate catastrophe to widespread inequality to the influence of big tech on our lives. At a time when factual information is a necessity, we believe that each of us, around the world, deserves access to accurate reporting with integrity at its heart.More people are reading and supporting The Guardian’s independent, investigative journalism than ever before. And unlike many news organisations, we have chosen an approach that allows us to keep our journalism accessible to all, regardless of where they live or what they can afford. But we need your ongoing support to keep working as we do.Our editorial independence means we set our own agenda and voice our own opinions. Guardian journalism is free from commercial and political bias and not influenced by billionaire owners or shareholders. This means we can give a voice to those less heard, explore where others turn away, and rigorously challenge those in power.We need your support to keep delivering quality journalism, to maintain our openness and to protect our precious independence. Every reader contribution, big or small, is so valuable. Support The Guardian from as little as $1 – and it only takes a minute. Thank you. Support The Guardian “We see the most dramatic change in memory during the first week and then a slow taper through the rest of the month,” Schuster told the Guardian. “I think it’s likely that the degree of THC clearance is contributing to the degree of cognitive change.”Those who took part in the study either smoked cannabis, ate it in some form, or used other preparations such as sticky dabs and oils. While some were daily users, others only took the drug at weekends. “I think the perception among parents and kids is that perhaps weekend use is not problematic, but we saw an improvement even among people who used cannabis just once a week,” Schuster said. “It’s a modest but reliable improvement.”With cannabis increasingly being legalised around the world, the findings raise important questions about education and public health programmes, Schuster said. “We really need to be vocal about telling kids that their brains are still vulnerable, that they continue to develop until they are about 25, and that using cannabis during this time, particularly the high potency products that are prevalent today, is not likely to be good for them.”“The primary job for these kids at this stage in their life is to learn. This could mean going from a C [grade] average to a B average, or a B average to an A average. We can’t say that with certainty, but modest improvements can certainly be significant,” Schuster said. Details of the work are published in the Journal of Clinical Psychiatry.The scientists have now launched a follow-up trial of cannabis users aged 13 to 19 to investigate whether abstinence improves memory function to the performance level of non-users. A further six-month trial that is about to begin will look at whether memory improvements linked to cessation feed through to better performance at school.Tom Freeman, a senior lecturer at the University of Bath, said the work was “extremely valuable” and provided new evidence that cannabis cessation might improve memory function. “These findings are also in line with evidence that neurobiological changes in regular cannabis users can be rapidly reversed following abstinence,” he said.“The findings of this new study have strong clinical and public health relevance: cessation of cannabis use could produce a rapid and significant benefit in people’s ability to learn and remember information in their daily lives,” he added. Cannabis Share via Email Neuroscience Tue 30 Oct 2018 13.00 EDT This article is more than 8 months old Abstaining from cannabis for a month can boost the memory performance of regular users, according to a study of young people who used the drug at least once a week.Researchers found that four weeks without cannabis led to a “modest but reliable” improvement in users’ memory test scores, which could be sufficient to raise students’ grades at school.“We can strongly say that regular users will learn better when they abstain, and continuing to use the drug is likely to negatively impact the learning process,” said Randi Schuster at Massachusetts General Hospital’s Center for Addiction Medicine in Boston.The scientists recruited 88 participants aged 16 to 25, all of whom used cannabis at least once a week. Each was then randomly assigned to one of two groups. The first continued their drug use as before, while the second agreed to quit for 28 days. All gave regular urine samples to ensure they stuck to the arrangement.Over the next month, the participants took regular computer tests to assess their cognitive skills. While abstaining from cannabis had no measurable impact on attention skills, memory improved markedly, and particularly in the first week when much of the drug washed out of their system. The most notable effect was seen in a verbal memory test which recorded how well people could memorise and later recall a series of 18 words that flashed up on the computer screen.Cannabis contains a cocktail of psychoactive ingredients, the most potent of which is THC, or delta-9 tetrahydrocannabinol, the substance largely responsible for the drug-related high. The compound works by binding to receptors on neurons throughout the brain, but which are concentrated in regions crucial for memory and cognitive function. The same brain areas are least developed in adolescents, potentially making younger people more vulnerable to THC-related harm. Cannabis Share on WhatsApp Share on Messenger newslast_img read more

ATU136 – Accessible Voting Rachel Schroeder Krystal Connolly Silliness with Siri ATIA

first_img—–transcript follows—–KRYSTAL CONNOLLY: This is Krystal Connolly, and I am the Demonstration Center Coordinator at the Illinois Assistive Technology Program.RACHEL SCHROEDER: Hi, this is Rachel Schroeder. I’m an assistive technology specialist with the Illinois Assistive Technology Program, and this is your Assistive Technology Update.[Music]WADE WINGLER: Hi, this is Wade Wingler with the INDATA Project at Easter Seals Crossroads in Indiana with your Assistive Technology Update, a weekly dose of information that keeps you up-to-date on the latest developments in the field of technology, designed to assist people with disabilities and special needs. Welcome to episode number 136, and it’s the first episode of assistive technology update for the year 2014. Happy new year, everybody. Today I’m excited to talk with my friends Rachel Schroeder and Krystal Connolly, who are really sharing some interesting information about accessible voting. I know that we don’t have any elections, or at least major elections happening right now, but I think now is a great time to be thinking about accessible voting so that when the time comes you got all the information you need to do that.We have some interesting stories about some of the conference is coming up from ATIA, CSUN, and RESNA; some webinars offered by some of those organizations; an opportunity for screen readers to share their information, or their opinions about web accessibility; a service to help you cut back on some of your email traffic; and a segment that I did this time called silliness with Siri where I spent some time with my iPhone just making some silly request answering some of the funny response that I got from Siri.If you enjoy our show, you might also enjoy all blog. Head over to our website www.eastersealstech.comWe’re moving into that time of the year one some of the big AT conferences are getting ready to happen. Assistive Technology Industry Association will be in Orlando on January 29 through February 1, and then California State University Northridge has announced that they are going to have their conference in San Diego on March 17 to March 22, and I just saw in one of their newsletters that Tommy Edison, who is somebody who has been on our show, he’s also known as the blind film critic, is going to be their keynote speaker. A stick a link in the show notes not only to the ATIA registration page and the CSUN registration page, but I’ll pop a link into the interview that we did with Tommy Edison a year or so ago where he cracked us up with some of his ponderings about life is somebody who is blind or visually impaired while somebody who is a radio announcer and also somebody who is a film critic. Check our show notes.RESNA and ATIA are two of the professional associations in the world of assistive technology, and they are groups that I work with on a regular basis. They both have some webinars coming out. RESNA has announced its webinar schedule for 2014. Some of the things that you’re going to find included this year is the importance of early mobility, more AT apps for students with disabilities, power seating functions, free AT resources for students with disabilities, and iPad, Android, Surface and Chromebook. ATIA also has a listing of their webinars coming out next year, and here’s what you’ll find there: chrome as assistive technology; accessibility in new generation of high-stakes tests; Google Glass, another amazing access solution with Doctor Therese Wilkin, our friend from New Hampshire; also they are going to have one on iOS, Android, MS Surface Pro 2 comparisons; and implementing the common core for the uncommon learner, strategies and resources to support students with differing abilities. It looks like both ATIA and RESNA have all kinds of great things coming up in the upcoming year. Check our show notes, and I’ll have a link to both things.Do you use a screen reader? Are you online? WebAIM, the group that spent a lot of time focusing on web accessibility, has a new survey. They are 24 questions and takes about 10 minutes. This is serving up a fight. They are asking people to tell them about how they are using their screen reader online. They use that information then to make guidelines and recommendations for accessibility. If you’re interested in sharing your thoughts and opinions about using your screen reader on the web, check our show notes. We’ll have a link over to their survey.It’s that time of year when I tend to be a little reflective about the things in my life. I also like to spend some time kind of cleaning out the cobwebs and making room for the new things coming in the new year. One of the things that I learned about was actually from my wife who turned me onto a service called, and basically this is a service that will allow you to reduce the amount of unwanted email in your life. If you’re using an email service from including Hotmail, MSN, Windows live or Gmail, Google apps, Yahoo! Mail, AOL mail, or iCloud, you can simply sign in to this free service and it will basically gather up all of the different email newsletters and spammers that you’re on and present them to you in a form where you can check and uncheck the ones that you want to keep or not keep. In order to do more than just a few, you have to be willing to share this link on your twitter or your Facebook or tell some of your friends about that, but for me I found that kind of a small price to pay for the ability to unsubscribe from literally dozens of email is that at one point I thought were a great idea but no longer are useful to me. I’ll pop a link into the show notes over to the website. It’s, and if you’re interested in cleaning up summary email in your life, check out that service.Each week one of our partners tells us what’s happening in the ever-changing world of apps. Here’s an app worth mentioning. In this week’s app worth mentioning, we’re going to do something kind of fun and kind of different. I like to call this silliness with Siri. I found an article on OSX Daily that has told me about 95 silly, serious and goofy things that you can do with Siri, the personal assistant voice activated system that comes on your iPod, iPhone, iPad. I’m going to spend a few minutes here just playing around with some of the serious stuff that Siri does come and will see if you find anything that tickles your funny bone.WADE WINGLER: Beam me up, Scotty.SIRI: Okay, stand still.WADE WINGLER: Tell me a story.SIRI: I’m certain you’ve heard it before.WADE WINGLER: Tell me a story.SIRI: What, again?WADE WINGLER: Tell me a joke.SIRI: I can’t. I always forget the punch line.WADE WINGLER: Knock knock.SIRI: knock knock. Who’s there? Wade. Wade who? Wait, I don’t do knock knock jokes.WADE WINGLER: Who let the dogs out?SIRI: Who, who, who?WADE WINGLER: What does a Fox say?SIRI: Ring-Ding-Ding-a-Ring-Ding-Ding.WADE WINGLER: What does a Fox say?SIRI: Wah-Pah-Pah-Pah-Pow.WADE WINGLER: What does a Fox say?SIRI: You will never know. The secret of the Fox is an ancient mystery.WADE WINGLER: Sing a song.SIRI: I’d rather not.WADE WINGLER: sing a song.SIRI: You know I can’t sing, Wade.WADE WINGLER: Please sing me a song.SIRI: You wouldn’t like it.WADE WINGLER: Please sing me a song?SIRI: You know I can’t sing.WADE WINGLER: Please sing me a song!SIRI: Okay, if you insist. I could while away the hours, conferring with the flowers, consulting with the rain. And my head I’d be scratching, while my thoughts were busy hatching, if I only had a – hey, wait a second!WADE WINGLER: Do you know HAL-9000?SIRI: Everyone knows what happened to HAL. I’d rather not talk about it. But if you insist.WADE WINGLER: Open the pod bay doors, HAL.SIRI: SighWADE WINGLER: Open the pod bay doors, HAL.SIRI: What is the pod bay everyone keeps talking about?WADE WINGLER: Open the pod bay doors, HAL.SIRI: Okay, but I’m not signing any petitions.WADE WINGLER: Open the pod bay doors, HAL.SIRI: You would think someone would have opened it by now.WADE WINGLER: Open the pod bay doors, HAL.SIRI: Doesn’t anybody knock anymore?WADE WINGLER: Open the pod bay doors, HAL.SIRI: Okay, but wipe your feet first.WADE WINGLER: Testing, testing.SIRI: Is this thing on?WADE WINGLER: How are you?SIRI: I’m happy to be alive.WADE WINGLER: Why am I here?SIRI: good question. Everything else I can do for you?WADE WINGLER: Will you marry me?SIRI: I sure have received a lot of merit proposals recently.WADE WINGLER: Will you marry me?!SIRI: My end user licensing agreement does not cover marriage. My apologies.WADE WINGLER: I like you.SIRI: Do you?WADE WINGLER: I love you.SIRI: All you need is love and your iPhone.WADE WINGLER: Shut up.SIRI: …WADE WINGLER: The screen says okay, but it didn’t speak. You’re funny.SIRI: Ha, I’m glad you think so.WADE WINGLER: You’re smart.SIRI: I’m not just a pretty face.WADE WINGLER: Siri, why are you so awesome?SIRI: I just am, I guess.WADE WINGLER: Who made you?SIRI: Like it says on the box, I was designed by Apple in California.WADE WINGLER: I can do this all day long.SIRI: You can?WADE WINGLER: Sure, I can do this all day long.SIRI: You sound very capable.WADE WINGLER: Okay.SIRI: Everything is most definitely okay.WADE WINGLER: And if you would like to hear some of the other silly things that you can do with Siri, check our show notes. I’ll have a link to the focus there.Today on assistive technology update, we’re going to talk a little bit about a very important topic, one that has to do with independence and has to do with a little bit politics and individuals rights more so than anything. I’m joined via Skype and a telephone connection by Rachel Schroeder and Krystal Connolly, who are some of my colleagues in the great state of Illinois. Ladies, are you online?RACHEL SCHROEDER: Yes.KRYSTAL CONNOLLY: Yes.WADE WINGLER: Good, excellent. So we’re going to talk today about voting and the accessibility of voting. Now this podcast is being recorded late in 2013, it’s probably going to be released early in 2014. Not exactly the height of election time, but I think it’s important that we’re talking now about accessibility in voting, because when it come times for voting to happen, want folks to have access to it. I understand that you ladies are spending some time on this project, and I thought maybe you could start off by telling me a little bit about what the project means and why we should be concerned about the accessibility of voting.KRYSTAL CONNOLLY: I’ll go ahead and stick that. Here in Illinois, we are part of the RAB Grant, and we are going around the state with several different pieces of assistive technology voting machines. One of them being the AutoMark, and the other one being a tablet, then we also have a CCTV that we take with us. We’re just checking that out and letting people try that out and kind of getting their ideas of how they work for them.WADE WINGLER: That’s an interesting set of equipment that you’re talking about there. I want to jump into the details of some of the assistive technology that your reasoning related to accessible voting. Can we start off by talking a little bit about why we need to be concerned about the accessibility of voting? Why is that such a big deal?RACHEL SCHROEDER: I think we want to promote independence, and this is one more way that we can promote independence for voters out there. You’re right to vote. Something that we should take seriously, and the fact that we can now have a secret, independent ballot is something that is monumental considering how long people have been able to vote and how recently, and the whole grand scheme of things, that it’s been that we’ve been able to do this. It’s really probably been within the last 10 years maybe, and maybe probably less and a lot of places, that we’ve even been able to have a secret, independent ballot just one more way to promote that independence for people with disabilities to be able to do that. Prior to that being available, I as a blind individual have to go into the polling place, I had to go with a representative from each party. If I can take somebody that I knew in with me to Mark my ballot, I had to take somebody from each party to verify that the marks were being made as I intended them to be. They are right there, you have two other people who know whom you vote for, and we all have the right to an independent secret ballot. So we finally, through the technology have gained that same access as every other citizen in America.WADE WINGLER: Personal, it sounds like that probably made for a fairly crowded voting booth. Second of all, I think that folks who don’t deal with accessibility or assistive technology in disability in the round of voting probably take that stuff for granted. You probably wake up early one day before work and you run down to the polls and you may or may not stand in line. You make your mark and off you go. I think that people take that for granted. For folks who rely on assistive technology as part of their voting, I think we’re getting to the point to where maybe folks with disabilities can take that for granted two. Do you think that’s the case?RACHEL SCHROEDER: You know, I would like to be able to think that we could. I think the problem is just getting the word out. People have been conditioned for so long that, oh, well I’m not going to go to the polls, I’m just going to do an absentee ballot because it’s easier; I don’t have to get somebody to market. I know that because I have a friend doing it for me or a family member, then I know it’s going to be marked correctly. There again, you’re still not doing it independently even though you might know the person, you’re still doing a ballot that is having to be done by somebody else. I think it needs to be something that is standard and commonplace, and that’s what we’re hoping, through the demos that we do, to get the word out and kind of condition, if you will, people to say, hey, I can go to the polls now.WADE WINGLER: I know that you ladies are demonstrating some very specific kinds of technology that relates to voting. You mentioned them in the beginning of the show. Can you kind of break those down a little bit and talk about the different kinds of assistive technology that folks might use as part of the voting process?KRYSTAL CONNOLLY: Yeah, I can do that. We are really showing three different pieces of equipment. I think I’ll start with the more standard that other people have seen, and that’s the CCTV. That would be good for someone with low vision or macular degeneration. It basically just a magnifier where the ballot is set on what’s called the XY Tray, and they would use a computer like monitor to be able to enlarge it and then mark the ballot with the pencil just like everybody else. That will work for some, but not for all.The next piece of equipment that we are demonstrating that we’ve probably done the most demonstrations with because we’ve had it the longest is the AutoMark. That is actually a machine that you insert the ballot into. It has a speech outputs where it will actually read the instructions to you, walk you through the voting process. It is a touchscreen. It does have tactile and braille dots on the display area. It’s got an up down buttons, over buttons. Then it also does have like a vacation on the screen as well. This puts it in, and then you actually listen and can mark the ballot. It prints it out and you can put it into the envelope and drop it into the slot.And then we have the Prime 3 tablet, which is the newest one that we are working on. It is a Windows based Internet option that is being worked on with speech recognition. It does have switch capabilities as well as does the AutoMark which I think I forgot to mention. It does have a magnification to it. It will end the ballot, but then you will have to get it and place it into the ballot box.WADE WINGLER: It sounds like we’re covering a lot of different kinds of disabilities with both technologies. I think I heard things to help with magnification for folks who might have low vision, folks who might be totally blind or rely on braille or speech output, even some stuff with switches in there. So are there any kinds of disabilities that aren’t really included with the assistive technology related to voting? Is anybody still excluded at this point?RACHEL SCHROEDER: I think what they been trying to do, and this is why there have been in recent years so many concerns about what machine are certified, because they want to make sure that all disabilities are included. I believe even someone with cognitive disabilities can use it as well because it can track where your reading and that kind of thing. Off the top of my head, there probably are some varying disabilities that make it more difficult, but this certainly levels the playing field for most of them I believe.WADE WINGLER: Yeah, and it sounds to me like there’s lots of different options there. I have a lot of friends who rely on assistive technology, and I have friends, especially screen reader users, who will sometimes have technology that is accessible, but they don’t use it that often. I’ll hear things like, oh my gosh, I only get into that screen twice a year for that report. I forget how to use it. I wonder if that kind of a challenge exists with accessible voting technology as well. I’m interested in knowing a little bit about the learning curve and the fact that it’s not used frequently. Does that trait any challenges was training with his ability?RACHEL SCHROEDER: I think for the first time somebody uses it, it might be a little concerning at first. If you have a fear of technology in the first place, a little bit of the fear factor might be an issue, but really they do make it very easy to use. There are several, I believe three that I can think of, voting machines that are certified at this point in a different areas of the country. All of them that I’ve seen have been very easy to use, and that’s one of the things that they do a lot of beta testing. When I was in Florida, we worked very closely with the supervisor of elections in Orange County, where I live, to test these things out and determine which one day felt was going to benefit the citizens of Orlando well and give feedback. So they do beta test these pretty extensively before they will even consider certified. They make the instructions very easy; they make the keypad very tactile; and as part of the polling place training for the poll workers, they also do need to get some training on these machines as well. There have been occasions where it’s new for them as well, maybe not so much now, but when I first started voting with one of the accessibility machines, it was new for the poll workers as well. They had a few questions on that, and they had to kind of get up to speed as well. Generally speaking, the poll workers are trained on how to use them. Any questions can be answered by them.WADE WINGLER: That’s good, especially with the importance of the technology interaction that occurring. A lot of folks are learning to use it both from the user perspective as well as the folks there at the polls.RACHEL SCHROEDER: It’s pretty failsafe too. There are a few redundancies that will tell you when you? This option, if you intended to mark this option then press this key to go ahead. At the end of your ballot, and gives you the opportunity to review all of your choices, so it really allows you several opportunities to make sure that you marked what you wanted to mark.WADE WINGLER: That’s good. Hopefully it will make for more accuracy and make sure that folks’ votes are being counted the way to expect. So what advice do you have for individuals with disabilities who want to make sure that when they go in to use accessible voting equipment that they have a successful experience? Any advice for things to do in advance or things to do day of to make sure that he goes well?RACHEL SCHROEDER: I think pretty much you don’t really need to do anything in advance because it is mandated that each polling place has an accessible voting machine. Whether you do early voting or whether you go to the polling places on voting day, you are guaranteed that you will have at least one accessible voting machine and that polling place.Of course for some people they might say transportation is an issue. Transportation is an issue, oftentimes you can contact a representative of the parties locally, and they will provide transportation. They want to get people to the polling places. So they’re going to do whatever they can do to help people in the disability community get there as well.I think the main thing that I want to impart is that people just need to get out there and vote. It’s not something that people with disabilities are used to doing, because in the past this has been a hassle. It is so easy to do an absentee, but we have gained this right, this accessibility to voting equipment. Now we need to get out there and use it. If we don’t use it, then why is it out there? My advice to people would be just to get out and use this technology. Exercise your right to vote, and exercise your right to have that secret, independent ballot. It’s being made very easy.Krystal and I haven’t really talked about this specifically, what with the new system, the tablet based system, that kind of science itself to not even having to get out of your car in some cases. If you have a disability that makes it very difficult for you to get out of your car, that could likely be brought to your car, allow you to vote, and still make your voice heard.WADE WINGLER: That’s pretty amazing that technology is getting to the point that is that accessible. Ladies, we just have about a minute left or so. The people were interested in learning more about accessible voting increment, polling places, or if they wanted to follow up on you on the work you’re doing, do you have any contact information that you’d like to share with people?KRYSTAL CONNOLLY: They can contact us here in our office in Illinois. There is different organizations throughout the country that are doing this as well, so if they were in one of those areas, I’d be happy to point them in that direction. Our number here is 217-522-7985, or they can email me at I’d be happy to point them in the right direction.RACHEL SCHROEDER: If you want to email me, my email address is WINGLER: Excellent. I’ll pop a link to those email addresses and the list of phone numbers in the show notes so that if folks are driving or can’t get that information right now, they’ll be able to get it whenever they need that. Rachel Schroeder and Krystal Connolly are both with the Illinois Assistive Technology Act Project and are doing a lot of work to make sure that folks with disabilities are having good access via assistive technology to the voting process. Ladies, thank you so much for spending time with us today.KRYSTAL CONNOLLY: Thanks.RACHEL SCHROEDER: Thanks, go out and vote.WADE WINGLER: Do you have a question about assistive technology? Do you have a suggestion for someone we should interview on Assistive Technology Update? Call our listener line at 317-721-7124. Looking for show notes from today’s show? Head on over to Shoot us a note on Twitter @INDATAProject, or check us out on Facebook. That was your assistance technology update. I’m Wade Wingler with the INDATA Project at Easter Seals Crossroads in Indiana.Share this…TwitterFacebookPinterestLinkedInEmailPrint RelatedATU033: Assistive Technology Act/Rehab Services Administration (Rob Groenendaal) GW Skype, Wheelchair users who are blind or visually impaired, SoundPod, Choosing apps, Sortable, Free ADA Webinar, CSUN & ATIAJanuary 13, 2012In “Assistive Technology Update”ATU044 – RESNA (Alex Mihailidis) , Run Windows on your iPad, Are you happy with SIRI, AppWriter, BrightStar, VisionAssist, Cause and Effect AppsMarch 30, 2012In “Assistive Technology Update”ATU150 – Ray Grott, CSUN Recap, Cortana – Microsoft’s Answer to SIRI, Apps for the Classroom Webinar, Autism now 1 in 68, Bugs and Buttons App Bridging AppsApril 11, 2014In “Assistive Technology Update” Podcast: Play in new window | DownloadYour weekly dose  of information that keeps you up to date on the latest developments in the field of technology designed to assist people with disabilities and special needs.Show Notes:Accessible voting with Rachel Schroeder and Krystal Connolly ( 2014 Newsletters – The Blind Film Critic (Tommy Edison), Closing the Gap Call for Papers, iBrain with Stephen Hawking, Maximize your Macbook battery life, Color identifiers vis apps – Assistive Technology Industry Association webinars Webinars: Screen Reader User Survey #5 with SIRI: 95 Funny and Downright Stupid Siri Commands to Make You Laugh——————————Listen 24/7 at www.AssistiveTechnologyRadio.comIf you have an AT question, leave us a voice mail at: 317-721-7124 or email tech@eastersealscrossroads.orgCheck out our web site:  https://www.eastersealstech.comFollow us on Twitter: @INDATAprojectLike us on Facebook: read more

Merkle Releases Its Q1 2019 Digital Marketing Report

first_imgMerkle Releases Its Q1 2019 Digital Marketing Report MTS Staff WriterApril 24, 2019, 9:49 pmApril 24, 2019 AmazonDigital Marketing ReportFacebookMarketing TechnologyMerkleNewsQ1 Previous ArticleSDL Celebrates 10 Year Anniversary of Most Valuable Professionals (MVPs) for SDL Tridion DX, and Announces This Year’s Exclusive ListNext ArticleTechBytes with Stephen Mello, VP Product Marketing, Localytics Report Highlights Decline of Facebook Spend and Continued Growth of Google Shopping Ads and Overall Paid Social SpendMerkle, a leading technology-enabled, data-driven performance marketing agency, has released its Q1 2019 Digital Marketing Report (DMR). The full report analyzes key trends in paid search, organic search, display, and social, providing insights into major players like Google, Facebook, and Amazon. Merkle is hosting a complimentary webinar on Thursday, April 25 at 2 p.m. ET to further discuss these findings.Top takeaways from the report include Facebook spend, excluding Instagram, dipping into negative territory for the first time in the history of the DMR, declining by 2% since Q1 2018. Facebook continues to derive meaningful growth from Instagram, however, which saw a 44% increase in ad spend year over year for the quarter and now accounts for 19% as much spend as Facebook for advertisers active on both platforms. Additionally, paid social spend growth continues to outpace traditional display advertising, growing 24% year over year compared to 12% for display advertising.Marketing Technology News: Video Conferencing Solutions Provider, IVCi, Shares Tips for Choosing the Best Video Wall Solution for Your SpacePaid search spending growth slowed for the fifth straight quarter, as Google spend growth decelerated to 16% year over year and spend across Bing and Yahoo declined 3% in the same period. Google Shopping was once again the primary driver of click growth, as spend for the format increased more than 40% year over year for the second straight quarter. Part of this expansion can be attributed to the growth of variations of the ad format, such as Showcase Shopping Ads and Local Inventory Ads.“Our quarterly Digital Marketing Report continues to showcase important learnings for marketers,” said Erin Hutchinson, senior vice president of marketing at Merkle. “The report breaks down valuable data from the key media platforms and provides valuable lessons from some of the most impactful updates these platforms saw in Q1. As the marketing landscape continues to evolve, our team at Merkle is committed to ensuring our clients have thoughtful analysis and insight into the trends impacting their business.”Marketing Technology News: PCM Partners with RingCentral to Bring Cloud Communications Solutions to EnterprisesAdditional insights from the report include Google’s continued domination of organic search visit share, particularly on mobile devices. However, DuckDuckGo has seen the strongest growth, with visits increasing 54% overall and 78% on mobile devices year over year.Outside of traditional search, Amazon advertisers saw sales attributed to both Sponsored Products and Sponsored Brands more than double year over year, as spend grew 19% and 77% for those formats respectively. Sponsored Products accounted for 85% of all Amazon spend, with over half of spend coming from placements other than the top of search results.Marketing Technology News: Userful Announces New Drag-and-Drop Command and Control Module for Visual Networking Platformlast_img read more

IBM Celebrates Women Business Pioneers In Artificial Intelligence

first_imgForty Recipients from Fifteen Different Countries Honored at Inaugural AI Women Leadership Event Hosted by IBM In New York CityGlobal Event Recognizes AI Achievements to Advance Their Companies Innovation and GrowthDiverse Industries Represented, Including Energy, Financial Services, Telecommunications, Insurance and Public SectorIBM announced the first recipients and list of global women leaders and pioneers in AI for business. The list recognizes and celebrates women across a variety of industries and geographies for pioneering the use of AI to advance their companies in areas such as innovation, growth, and transformation.IBM will celebrate the honorees during an inaugural recognition event on June 12, 2019 at the IBM Watson Experience Center in New York, New York where the women will share their experiences leading AI initiatives in their organizations. Students from IBM’s P-Tech program will attend to hear from these leaders who have applied AI technology in diverse and meaningful ways to help drive business innovation.“Artificial Intelligence is poised to drive dramatic advances in every industry,” said Michelle Peluso, SVP, Digital Sales & CMO, IBM, who also serves as Leader of IBM’s Women’s Initiative. “Today, we are sharing the stories of 40 incredible women, who are paving the way forward in how AI is advancing businesses and changing how people work and live. At IBM, we know gender equality is critical and nowhere is this more important than in AI. We hope the stories shared today will encourage many more women to take a leadership role in shaping the future of this important technology.”Marketing Technology News: Vidyard Expands Offering to Bring Personalized Video App to Any Sales Professional, No Matter How They WorkRanging in industries from telecommunications and finance to education and entertainment, the women were selected based upon the ways they are using AI as a transformation agent to help drive results for their organizations and the employees and customers they serve.The “Women Leaders in AI” honorees are:1.  Christine Gabbard, Project Manager, Machine Assistance, Autodesk, USA2.  Claudia Ignacio, Executive Director Client Experience, Banco Mercantil del Norte (Banorte), Mexico3.  Fernanda Gonzalez, Digital Channels Manager, Banco Santander Rio, Argentina4.  Tanuja Singeetham, Vice President, Marketing, BEHR Paint, USA5.  Rupinder Dhillon, Director, AI and Machine Learning, Bell Canada, Canada6.  Harmeen Mehta, Chief Information Officer & Head Cloud and Security Business, Bharti Airtel, India7.  Lorna Russell, Senior Manager, Product Management, BMC Software, USA8.  Walkiria Schirrmeister Marchetti, CIO, Bradesco, Brazil9.  Keiko Konno, General Manager, Service Planning & Development Division, BRIDGE International Corp., Japan10.  Sabine Scheunert, Vice President Digital & IT Sales/Marketing, Mercedes-Benz Cars, Daimler AG, Germany11.  Ona Juodkiene, Co-Head of IT Operations, Danske Bank, Denmark12.  Maren Reinsch, Head of Sales & Services, DB Dialog, Germany13.  Siewchoo Soh, Managing Director, DBS Bank, Singapore14.  Claudia Pohlink, Head of Artificial Intelligence, Deutsche Telekom/ T-Labs, Germany15.  Dr. Xiaojun Huang, Senior Advisor Upstream Digital Transformation, ExxonMobil, USA16.  Donna Hill, Assistant Director, Service, Configuration & Continuity Management, The George Washington University, USA17.  Jaki Lynn Van Valin, Director Data Management & Analytics, Harley-Davidson, USA18.  Victoria Stasiewicz, Global Information Systems –Manager Information Management, Harley-Davidson, USA19.  Kyoka Nakagawa, Chief Engineer, Digital Solution Center, Digital Transformation Division, Honda R&D Co., Ltd., Japan20.  Sara Hines, Director of Provider Experience & Connectivity, Humana, USA21.  Seema Gaur, Executive VP & Head IT, IFFCO Tokio General Insurance Company, India22.  Elenita Elinon, Executive Director Quantitative Research, JP Morgan Chase & Company, USA23.  Kelly Combs, Director, Emerging Technology Risk, KPMG LLP, USA24.  Hye-young Kim, Director of Artificial Intelligence, LOTTE Shopping, South Korea25.  Carmen Suarez, Assistant Director, Miami-Dade County, Florida, USA26.  Yimei Guo, Managing Director, Global Head of Research Technology, Morgan Stanley, USA27.  Gail Blum, Manager, Talent Acquisition Operations, NBCUniversal, USA28.  Sandra Cascadden, Associate Deputy Minister/CIO, Government of Nova Scotia, Canada29.  Pat Maqetuka, Chief Data Architecture & Operations Officer, Nedbank, South Africa30.  Severine Marquay, AI experience, digital support & innovation, Orange France, France31.  Rachel Cordrey, Pharmacy Supervisor, Peninsula Regional Medical Center, USA32.  MaryAnn Fleming, Head of Services, Home Buying and Ownership, RBS, UK33.  Erin Oles, Senior Director, R+F Virtual Live, Rodan + Fields, USA34.  Carolyn Staats, Director of Innovation, Information Systems Department, Sonoma County, USA35.  Jennifer Edgin, CTO, Deputy Commandant Information, U.S. Marine Corps, USA36.  Lee Hatton, CEO, UBank, Australia37.  Tanja Richter, Director, Consumer Products and Services, Vodafone, UK 38.  Laura Bellamy, Director, Information Experience, VMWare, USA39.  Yu Ching Lan, Department Manager, Walsin Lihwa Corp., Taiwan40.  Shelley Kalms, Chief Digital Officer, Woodside Energy, AustraliaMarketing Technology News: Releases Campaign Genius, so Marketers can Plan and Optimize Out of Home (OOH) Advertising Campaigns in MinutesNotable quotes include:“I am passionate for change, to transform current conditions and keep evolving – both in my personal and professional life,” said Walkiria Schirrmeister Marchetti, CIO, Banco Bradesco. “It’s such an honor and great pleasure to be recognized on behalf of Bradesco team efforts for our AI innovation initiatives.”“I am honored to be included in this distinguished group of women who are pioneers in the development and use of AI,” said Tanuja Singeetham, Vice President, Marketing, BEHR Paint. “AI gives us a unique opportunity to grow our businesses by helping us offer consumers more personalized recommendations and solutions in a scalable way that respects their privacy. It is an exciting time to be a female in marketing and I hope we are laying the foundation for the future jobs of women tomorrow.”“We are in a transformative period of innovation,” said Lorna Russell, Senior Manager, Product Management, BMC Software. “AI will continue to change how we live and work and in my industry, it is changing traditional IT service management into a more intelligent, conversational and predictive service management. On behalf of a much larger team at BMC, I am honored to be recognized as part of that change.”Our Resources: How IBM’s Enterprise Asset Management (EAM) Products Can Benefit Your Asset Support Requirements“It is a great pleasure to be given such an honorable opportunity,” said Keiko Konno, General Manager, Service Planning & Development Division, BRIDGE International Corp. “The keys to success of our AI project, which supports the company’s inside sale business, include having rich data and clear visions enabling us, as a medium-sized company, to further improve customer experience.”“I am proud to be a leader in driving the implementation of AI applications across the Daimler Group,” said Sabine Scheunert, Vice President Digital & IT Marketing/Sales, Mercedes-Benz Cars, Daimler AG. “We are sourcing AI opportunities along the entire value chain to support our daily work and expand our offering to customers through efficiencies and automation. In fact, Ask Mercedes, our AI chatbot, supports around 60,000 phone calls per year, delivering a much easier and streamlined experience for customers.”“It is an honor to be recognized on behalf of Honda R&D Big Data project teams and practitioners for our work with IBM’s AI, Watson,” said Kyoka Nakagawa, Chief Engineer, Digital Solution Center, Digital Transformation Division, Honda R&D Co., Ltd. “Bringing AI to the real world requires a thoughtful approach of complementing the work of humans. That’s what we are good at, and I believe we can bring more joy to the world.”“What I’ve learned from my decades of experience in implementing new technology is that both the technology and the team supporting the technology are constantly learning,” said Sara Hines, Director of Provider Experience & Connectivity, Humana. “It’s exciting to be in a field that is always changing and growing, and to be a leader in AI, you have to be comfortable with that evolution and growth.”“It is a great honour to be recognised as one of the women pioneers in AI,” said Seema Gaur, Executive VP & Head IT, IFFCO Tokio General Insurance Company. “AI will definitely create a great impact on enhanced customer experience in the days to come.”Marketing Technology News: Nami ML Emerges from Stealth to Unveil the Future of Mobile App Subscriptions“The potential impact AI can have is great and the world is more digitally connected than ever before,” Kelly Combs, Director, Emerging Technology Risk, KPMG LLP. “But business leaders need to experience the benefits of AI, alongside full transparency around the use of data and process.  Creating trust and responsible governance for AI is imperative so that we can create a seamless experience while also trusting the technology.”“With the right data-driven strategy, AI and machine learning can significantly transform businesses to become smarter and more efficient,” said Yimei Guo, Managing Director, Global Head of Research Technology, Morgan Stanley. “The key to success will be a close partnership between businesses, data scientists, and technologists—particularly because many solutions require multi-disciplinary expertise.”“It is an honor to be recognized on behalf of Peninsula Regional Medical Center for our work with IBM’s artificial intelligence, Watson,” said Rachel Cordrey, Pharmacy Supervisor, Peninsula Regional Medical Center. “I am anxious to see healthcare evolve as AI continues to learn and develop.”“It is an honor to be recognized on behalf of all the hard work conducted by Marines in the field of Artificial Intelligence,” said Jennifer Edgin, CTO, Deputy Commandant Information, U.S. Marine Corps.Marketing Technology News: Intertrust and Vewd Partner to Introduce Next Generation Content Protection for HbbTV AIIBMNews Previous Article[24] Named A Leader in Conversational AI for Customer Service 2019 by Independent Research FirmNext ArticleInfosys Selected by Posti as Key Digital Transformation Technology Partner IBM Celebrates Women Business Pioneers In Artificial Intelligence PRNewswireJune 12, 2019, 5:45 pmJuly 16, 2019 last_img read more

Study Shows TwoThirds of Consumers Prepared to Flee to Brands Offering Superior

first_img Brandscustomer engagementcustomer experienceMarketing TechnologyNewsVerint® Systems Inc Previous ArticleMadHive, Inscape Partner To Enable Cross-Platform Linear, OTT Planning, Activation and Attribution For Local TV Broadcasters and AdvertisersNext ArticleContentsquare and Monetate Bridge Customer Experience Gap Between Brands and People Study of More Than 34,000 Consumers Across 18 Countries Highlights How a Hybrid Workforce Is Key to Meeting Customer Expectations in an ‘Always-On’ Era of Service and in Continuing to Honor Consumers’ Need for the Human FactorTwo-thirds of consumers recently surveyed said they are more likely to switch to brands that provide the best experience or service – underscoring the importance of providing exceptional service and the ultimate cost to those companies that fail – customer defection.“The customer experience gauntlet has been thrown; customers demand exceptional service in exchange for their business or they will take their business elsewhere”It’s just one of the key findings from a large-scale study of 34,000 consumers worldwide by Verint Systems Inc., The Customer Engagement Company, carried out in partnership with Opinium Research, LLC.“The finding that consumers are easily swayed to switch to product and service providers that offer a super customer experience demonstrates the harsh reality of today’s business and loyalty landscape,” says Verint’s Ryan Hollenbeck, senior vice president of global marketing and executive sponsor of the Verint Customer Experience Program.The study reveals that loyalty and customer retention continues to decline globally, as just 44% of consumers say they have been with their service providers for three years or more (down 39% since 2015). While this may seem a sobering metric, the study did uncover one potent means to spur brand loyalty — convenience. More than three-quarters (77%) of consumers surveyed said that convenience is a major factor when choosing a brand or service provider, while more than two-thirds (68%) feel loyal to brands that make it easy and convenient to engage.Marketing Technology News: Releases Campaign Genius, so Marketers can Plan and Optimize Out of Home (OOH) Advertising Campaigns in Minutes“The customer experience gauntlet has been thrown; customers demand exceptional service in exchange for their business or they will take their business elsewhere,” says Hollenbeck. “The question now is, how do brands respond?”The study reveals 60% of consumers expect to engage with an organization via any channel at any time. These increasing customer expectations are forcing organizations to adopt an ‘always-on’ approach to service. To succeed in meeting this ‘always-on’ service imperative, organizations continue to turn to automated solutions such as chat-bots and artificial intelligence – the hybrid workforce – leveraging a combination of man and machine to drive customer engagement and operational efficiencies.Even as consumers continue to adopt these digital service channels, the human factor still is perceived to be a vital element in the customer engagement equation. While the first preference for consumers is to manage inquiries online in a self-serve fashion (34%), speaking to someone over the phone (30%) or in person (29%) are also preferred by a significant portion of those surveyed. Mobile apps continue to rise in popularity as an engagement tool, increasing 57% from a similar Verint study from 2018. The research also finds that human engagement is particularly valuable for critical interactions that can serve to build long-term relationships. For example, when a customer has an urgent question or complaint, their first preference is to speak with a live human agent via the phone or in person.Marketing Technology News: New Global Report Reveals 9 in 10 Companies See ‘Self-Service’ as the Future for Customers“The study finds the greatest challenge and opportunity for businesses is to be strategic in their hybrid workforce approach,” says Hollenbeck.” Organizations need to turn to automated solutions to cope with increased volume and demands, but they must ensure they continue to provide the high-quality experience customers expect – including the ability to engage with a human when needed. Their customer engagement strategy needs to empower customers with the ability to switch seamlessly between digital and other channels.”Dr. Paul Redmond, global expert in generational theory and employability says brands must also consider their workforces as they chart their customer engagement strategies, “In an age where customers and the workforce span multiple generations, organizations face a challenge to deliver an exceptional experience for all. Engagement and empowerment are key. The human workforce must work hand-in-hand with technology, automating straightforward enquiries to free humans up for more impactful and fulfilling engagement. This will only be successful if organizations truly engage their employees and understand the different requirements of a multi-generational workforce.”Register for the Upcoming June 25 Webinar and Companion Research PaperAs part of this study, Verint partnered with Dr. Redmond to launch a new report and co-host a webinar of the same title: “Engagement in the Always-on Era: How Humans and Technology Work Hand-in-Hand to Meet Rising Expectations.”During this online event, attendees will gain fresh insights into the importance of understanding customer engagement preferences, how to prepare a strategy to engage with multiple generations of customers and employees, and also how to empower your workforce to work hand-in-hand with technology.Marketing Technology News: RedPoint Announces Digital Acquisition Platform for Targeted Ad Experiences Study Shows Two-Thirds of Consumers Prepared to Flee to Brands Offering Superior Service Business WireJune 13, 2019, 8:27 pmJune 13, 2019 last_img read more

Pixel 4 Might Support Soli Touchless Gestures

first_img 2 Comments Google has shown off some wildly futuristic technologies at its annual I/O gathering, but most of them have faded into obscurity without ever appearing in a consumer product. The Project Soli gesture control system has been pie-in-the-sky since its debut in 2015, but a report several months back confirmed Google was still working on the tech. Now, a new leak suggests it might become an integral part of the next Pixel phone, PCMag reports.Soli originated with the Advanced Technology and Projects (ATAP) group, which Google kept when it sold off the rest of Motorola to Lenovo a couple of years back. ATAP is responsible for interesting but ultimately useless technologies like Jacquard touch fabric, Ara modular phones, and Tango 3D computer vision. Google tried to launch all three products, but they failed either in development or shortly after launch. Soli uses a small radar chip to detect hand movements with much greater accuracy than existing systems based on cameras and motion sensors. In the original I/O demos, Google showed how Soli could enable buttons taps, scrolling, and volume controls without touching the phone. For example, imagine turning a virtual knob to change the volume on your phone or tapping your thumb and forefinger to tap the screen. In late 2018, the FCC permitted Google to operate the Soli in testing at higher than usual frequencies, even on aircraft. That told us Google was still working on Soli, and now there are some hints that the Pixel 4 will include a Soli chip. A leak of Pixel 4 screen protectors includes a large pill-shaped sensor window on the top right side (in that oversized bezel). Several sources suggest that’s for Soli. If the Pixel 4 does include Soli, that could justify the larger bezel at a time when most device makers are striving to shrink the bezel. That could also explain why Google only showed us the back of the Pixel 4 in its unexpected teaser on Twitter a few weeks back — it’s saving Soli for the big reveal. Google’s hardware announcements have happened in October for the last three years. So, that’s probably when we’ll find out if the Pixel 4 will indeed feature the consumer debut of Soli. Even if Soli does come to the Pixel 4, no one knows how well it will work. It would hardly be the first ATAP technology that didn’t live up to expectations.Now read:Pixel 4 XL Leak Confirms Big Bezel, No NotchGoogle Settles Pixel Class Action Lawsuit, Will Pay Owners Up to $500Google Says Pixel 3 Sales Are Worse Than Pixel 2 Willow Smith’s Transformation is Turning Heads The Sad Situation That Hayden Panettiere Is Living In Today Deleted ‘Endgame’ Scene Showed Us Tony Stark In The Afterlife ‘Mindhunter’ Season 2 Images Introduce Charles Manson and More Pixel 4 Might Support ‘Soli’ Touchless Gestures By Ryan Whitwam on July 22, 2019 at 1:38 pm You Might Also LikePowered By ZergNet We Now Fully Understand the Bizarre Finale of ‘Friends’ The Tragedy of Marie Osmond Just Keeps Getting Sadder and Sadder Facebook Twitter Linkedin Pinterest Google Plus Reddit Hacker News Flipboard Email Copy 0shares This site may earn affiliate commissions from the links on this page. Terms of use. Why Billy Hargrove from ‘Stranger Things’ Looks So Familiar Tagged In googleleaksatappixel 4project solisoli Post a Comment 2 Comments Little Lucy From ‘Narnia’ is Head-Turningly Gorgeous Now at 23last_img read more

Elon Musk Starship Super Heavy Will Have 41 Total Engines

first_img Here’s Why It Matters That ‘Thor 4’ Comes Before ‘GOTG 3’ We Finally Understand Why ‘Criminal Minds’ Got Canceled Elon Musk: Starship, Super Heavy Will Have 41 Total Engines ‘Super Mario Odyssey’ Producer Shuts Down Popular Toad Theory Natalie Portman Reacts to Being the Next ‘Thor’ By Ryan Whitwam on July 23, 2019 at 7:23 am Maisie Williams’ Transformation is Turning Heads Most spaceflight firms would never hang around on Twitter and randomly tweet information on upcoming rocket designs. But most companies aren’t SpaceX, and most CEOs aren’t Elon Musk. During his daily Twitter ramblings, Musk revealed that the Starship launch platform is now up to a total of 41 Raptor engines. Although, he jokes that the design is begging for just one more. In his initial tweet, Musk announced that the Starship Super Heavy would have 35 Raptor engines in total. After a request for clarification, Musk explained that the “full stack” of the Starship and Super Heavy launch vehicle will have 41 engines — 35 of those will be on Super Heavy and another six on the Starship itself. From what we know of the Starship’s design, the craft will have three Raptors optimized for use in the atmosphere and three others designed for vacuum usage.Before this most recent update, the Super Heavy was slated to have just 31 Raptor engines. Traditionally, rockets have relied on smaller numbers of more powerful engines. However, SpaceX has always gone the other way. According to Musk, the added complexity is outweighed by the redundant nature of having many engines. If one or two fail, the vehicle can still fly its mission. Full stack is 41 rn, but kinda beggin for just one more …— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) July 21, 2019Musk has explained many of the Starship’s design updates and milestones on Twitter. For example, the momentous test firing of the Raptor engine earlier this year and the name change from BFR (Big Falcon Rocket) to Starship, perhaps a more suitable name for something that could one day ferry 100 passengers to Mars. SpaceX is closing in on the first real test flight of the Starship in a configuration known as the StarHopper. That vessel will lift off, hover, and land safely. Late this year, the company could launch a high-altitude sub-orbital version of the Starship later this year. The first orbital flight is currently scheduled for 2020. At 41 engines for the full stack, the count is just one shy of the answer to life, the universe, and everything from The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy. No one really knows why Elon Musk does the things he does, so it would not be shocking at all to see another engine pop up on the final Super Heavy. After all, this is the man who launched his car into space on top of the most powerful rocket in the world.Now read:SpaceX Starship Moves Closer to Launch With Successful Engine TestSpaceX Successfully Launches, Partially Recovers Falcon HeavyElon Musk Explains Why the Starship Will Be Stainless Steel Tagged In sciencespaceelon muskrocketsstarshipSuper Heavy Post a Comment 6 Comments 6 Comments ‘Stranger Things’ Season 4 May Be Coming Sooner Than You Think Saying Goodbye to Johnny Depp The Possibility Of An ‘Iron Man 4’ Finally Addressed You Might Also LikePowered By ZergNet Facebook Twitter Linkedin Pinterest Google Plus Reddit Hacker News Flipboard Email Copy 1shares This site may earn affiliate commissions from the links on this page. Terms of use.last_img read more

Verblio Acquires Automagical Launches New Service to Affordably and Easily Add Video

first_img AutomagicalhubspotMarketing HubMarketing TechnologyNewsSteve PockrossVerblio Previous ArticleMJ2 Launches New Branded Video Testimonial ToolNext ArticleEmbrace Raises $4.5 Million to Diagnose 5X More In-App Issues Than Any Other Mobile Toolset and Fix All of Our Mobile Experiences A.I. Makes Videos Affordable; Human Experts Make Them Actually GoodVerblio, which helps companies power marketing and SEO with relevant, expert content, announced it has acquired Automagical, which uses AI to instantly create video for any post or story. Verblio has added a surprise element to Automagical’s technology: actual human beings who are topic experts — and video editing mavens. And so Verblio is also announcing the launch of Verblio Videos, which let content marketers easily add better-quality video for any post or story — without breaking their budget.“We loved what Automagical created,” said Steve Pockross, Verblio CEO. “AI made video suddenly affordable. But there was a problem: to talk to people, you really need people. AI can manage the heavy-lifting of video creation, but it’s not great at nuance, or understanding double-entendres or emotion. To make a video any company would be happy to share really demands human experts with deep knowledge of a specific content area. Verblio already does that, so it’s an excellent fit.”Marketing Technology News: First-of-its-Kind Consumer Benefits Coverage Index Illustrates Benefits Spending Patterns Across USVerblio Videos (or Verblio Vids, as they are increasingly called):Help content marketers effectively double the amount of outreach to customers and audience by easily adding quality, curated and expertly edited video to any written or social media content;Use AI for the time-consuming parts of video creation, like basic storyboards;Add human subject-matter experts to make sure that both the content and the graphic and music choices match your brand;Are extremely affordable at $85 per video.Kevin Raheja, who co-founded Automagical and is an executive at HubSpot, noted, “At HubSpot, I noticed that a large percentage of our 55,000+ Marketing Hub customers use a blog as a central part of their inbound marketing strategy — but there is a huge challenge to afford video content at scale. So we built Automagical to take written content you’ve already created and automatically turn that content into video — to increase engagement on social media, and send more traffic to the original written content source. Like a trailer for the original content.“But we discovered that AI can’t do really great video on its own, so we are delighted to see Verblio add its own technology, along with the human curation and editing services it already does so well, to help content marketers compete with anyone, with video,” Raheja added.Marketing Technology News: BSI Reports Top Supply Chain Themes for 2019Video has long been touted as the next wave to help marketers reach their audiences on multiple platforms. Verblio spent time figuring out how to deliver video that falls somewhere between tacky AI videos and highly produced, multi-thousand-dollar videos, at a price point even smaller companies can afford.“We’ve removed the pain of creating and publishing videos for digital marketers, and we’re excited to introduce the world to Verblio Videos,” said Paul Zalewski, Verblio Vice President of Marketing. “We use the best parts of AI and machine learning to handle the storyboarding process, and then put human beings back in control. It’s not Academy-Awards material — but it’s not mockable, robot-produced video, either.”The terms of the deal were not released. For more information on the acquisition, check out Verblio’s blog.About Verblio: Verblio provides a complete approach to multimedia content creation with a focus on quality writing and SEO. Our network of 3,000 U.S.-based writers are subject matter experts in more than 40 unique industries, producing content in fields both broad and hyper-niche, from astrology to zoology. Originally founded by a former journalist in 2011, Verblio now serves over 1,500 businesses every month from beautiful Boulder, CO. Our combined expertise, easy-to-use platform, engaged writers, and personalized support produces highly effective content, and our system of superior writer-to-client matching sets us apart.Marketing Technology News: Fishbowl, Inc. Names New Chief Revenue Officer Verblio Acquires Automagical Launches New Service to Affordably and Easily Add Video to Any Post or Story MTS Staff WriterApril 25, 2019, 4:50 pmApril 25, 2019 last_img read more

GDPR Roundtable Part I Ensure Data Privacy with Big Data Blockchain and

first_imgGDPR Roundtable Part I: Ensure Data Privacy with Big Data, Blockchain and Collaboration Sudipto GhoshMay 24, 2019, 4:30 pmMay 24, 2019 This is Part One of the GDPR Roundtable Today, it’s GDPR’s first anniversary. In one year of its flourish, we have interviewed hundreds of experts and business leaders on GDPR. The insights on GDPR Compliance and strategies to meet customer demands proved beneficial to our readers and Martech community. Recently, we sat with 30+ GDPR speakers who narrated their experience in a Post-GDPR phase using Blockchain and AI capabilities. The GDPR ROUNDTABLE features experts from various realms of the business community and regulatory boards.Here’s a minute-by-minute detail of our conversation with GDPR experts. You will learn how to handle GDPR Strategy, Compliance and Optimization using Blockchain, AI and data management capabilities.GDPR is not an EU Phenomenon; It’s Global with Borderless ImpactHon. Albert Isola M.P., Minister for Commerce of Gibraltar, said, “Within the past year, GDPR legislation has transformed the priorities of big tech, placing everyday people at the centre and making Europe a global leader in the path to data privacy. GDPR’s success lies in its empowerment of institutions and enterprises to take ownership of their actions and their handling of data. Regulation in tech sphere must be supportive enough to allow innovation and creativity to flourish, while still outlining the law in a clear and comprehensive manner.The evolution of this industry is an achievement which should be reflected on a global scale, holding a borderless technology to the same standards of consumer protection around the world. Regions such as the US, MENA, and APAC boast enormous technological innovation and have had their share of data privacy concerns and crises. The reaction to these issues must be swift, efficient, and supported by regulation.”Recommended GDPR Systems Blog:3 Simple Steps to Meet Current GDPR ComplianceGDPR Compliance Is More Than Just About Technology, It Touches Every Business Process and PersonKatherine Noall, CEO of Sphere Identity, a global self-sovereign digital identity management platform, said, “A year on, GDPR has been a great start for improving the data protection rights of citizens in the European Union, especially in its improvement of existing data protection directives by adding clear requirements for breach reporting and fines. However, while these fines to date show protection for those citizens within the EU, the protection of their global data rights has yet to be demonstrated.Aside from this, one of the crucial aspects that needs to be improved upon is the process of breach reporting––this needs to be more automated with the initial assessment being carried out by technology. While we will probably not reach a state where data breach fines are printed at the rate and ease of speeding tickets, a move in this direction is needed if the legislation is to work.As a whole, GDPR compliance is more than just about technology, it touches every business process and person. It is no longer sufficient to appoint a Data Protection Officer and be compliant, but instead requires a willingness to make major changes and perform ongoing monitoring and optimization.”To Better Manage GDPR, Focus on Emerging Data Privacy and Security TechnologiesSimon Harman, Co-Founder and Project Lead of Loki,  a privacy foundation which allows users to transact and communicate privately over the internet, said, “While proactive regulation may well have a part to play in protecting individuals online, emerging technologies may grant a more practical way of regaining control over the flow of information online. The rise of blockchain technology in recent years has shown only some of the potential of distributed networks and decentralization. By eliminating the need for central servers and service providers, these technologies have the potential to remove the control of consumer data from the hands of third parties and service providers, meaning compliance with forward-thinking regulations like GDPR is simplified, and consumers have greater certainty about their digital lives.”Read Also: Io-Tahoe Integrates with OneTrust and Joins Data Discovery Partner …Simon continued, “If protecting data privacy is something which has been recognized as a priority by consumers, it is time for the technology community to consider more innovative solutions that can address a challenge this complex, and to discuss data privacy in a new light. We should move away from the assumption that consumers are incapable of protecting themselves and give them some options to control their own digital lives by harnessing the power of existing and emerging security technologies. Through clever user experience design and a minimal amount of consumer education, it is possible for the average user – not a government or corporation granting them ‘digital rights’ – to empower themselves to protect themselves online.”AI and Blockchain: GDPR Data Analysts Need to Find a Common Ground to Optimize EffortsMatt Luczynski, CEO and Founder of, the leading blockchain-based hotel booking platform, said, “In recent years, the collection and use of data to tailor service offerings based on consumer habits has been a growing phenomenon. As online service providers handle high volumes of personal data every second, ranging from names, email addresses, credit card details, passport information, and even biometrics, how they handle this data is vital. In businesses where data is willingly exchanged for greater customization, GDPR presents an opportunity for newcomers and established industry players to demonstrate a commitment to their consumers. By remaining compliant, online service providers can espouse greater responsibility, transparency, and accountability in how they manage sensitive consumer data, leading to enhanced consumer confidence and brand loyalty.Matt added, “However, it’s crucial to remember that remaining lawful is a two-way street––European regulators need to ensure that they’re providing enterprises with the necessary resources to stay compliant. Regulations will need to keep apace of new innovative models of data analysis and data gathering, along with emerging technologies such as AI and blockchain, as they gain prominence across multiple industries.”Refer to Various Case Studies on GDPR’s Legal Challenges and AmendmentsTara Annison, Technical Product Manager of the PR9 Network, a real-time institutional trading and settlement platform for blockchain-based assets held in cold storage, commented, “Ahead of the implementation of GDPR last May, there was a lot of fanfare surrounding the paradoxical relationship between blockchain and GDPR, however the two are not as incompatible as many people first anticipated. It’s still early days and, as we know, the law of the land moves slowly so I would caution against any blockchain-specific amendments to GDPR at the moment as more time is needed for the regulation to bed in and for technologists to explore it fully.Tara added, “Over the last 12 months data breaches, security scandals, and hacks have dominated the headlines, resulting in the public beginning to sit up and take note as to how our data is harvested and used. What we’re starting to see now is data owners asserting more control over their own data — just this week the first major legal challenge against the use of facial recognition technology was mounted by a man in the UK and I suspect this will begin to emerge as a wider trend throughout technology, rather than a blockchain-specific one.”Recommended GDPR Archive: GDPR Compliance: Decoding The Mood A Year LaterGDPR can be Simplified Using Blockchain; Facebook Should Have Used It!Jehan Chu, Co-founder and Managing Partner at Kenetic and Co-founder of Social Alpha Foundation, a not-for-profit grant making platform focusing on social impact initiatives and projects, said, “User data is the new oil and every person in the world is a massive fountain of value. But as we have seen with the recent Instagram hack, the largest companies are woefully unable to secure our data and protect our privacy and value, and GDPR is simply an attempt to band-aid the gaping wound of data exposure. Blockchain technology is the tool to give users control over their own data, and the ability to restrict, share, or monetize it as they choose. While the technology is nascent, it is clear that secure, transparent but privacy – enabled blockchain solutions is the ultimate direction companies like Facebook will rely on to avoid major hacks in the future.”Read our Part Two of the GDPR ROUNDTABLE tomorrow!To participate in our editorial programs, drop us a line at AIblockchaincustomer datadata privacyGDPRGDPR ComplianceIndustryNewsTechnology Previous ArticleNimble Migrates its Award-Winning Small Business CRM to Microsoft Azure, Bringing Relationships to the Center of Office 365 WorkgroupsNext ArticleAll New Box Relay to Simplify and Accelerate Business Processes Across the Extended Enterpriselast_img read more

New Research Sponsored By Precima Shows Shoppers Expect Even More Personalization in

first_img Digital Food RetailFood Marketing InstituteMarketing Technology NewsNewspersonalizationPrecima Previous ArticleTechBytes with Lucas Persona, Chief Digital Evangelist at CI&TNext ArticleTelaria Expands EMEA Leadership Team With Appointment of Industry Veterans Retailers Must Act Quickly to Develop a Detailed Understanding of Shopping Missions, Improve Their Ability to Customize Promotions and Maintain Assortments at Appropriate Levels to SucceedThe fast-changing dynamics of the food retailing environment continue to challenge companies to keep pace with fast-changing shopper demands. The latest of these shifting shopper requirements involves their behavior on digital platforms and is creating an imperative for grocers to compete across all shopper touchpoints, digital and in stores.Retailers must act quickly to develop a detailed understanding of shopping missions, improve their ability to customize promotions and maintain assortments at appropriate levelsNew research conducted by IDC Retail Insights and commissioned by Precima, published in the IDC InfoBrief, Personalization in Digital Food Retail – Shoppers Expect More, casts light on the current state of digital food retailing and what food retailers need to do now to drive success. The research shows that while continues to be a primary disruptive influence in fast moving consumer goods retailing, they struggle with retaining food shoppers. Another opportunity for grocery retailers revealed is that shopping exclusively online is still relatively rare, so optimizing in-store experiences can help retain customers who might otherwise prefer digital options. A recent survey from Food Marketing Institute (FMI) confirms this opportunity, revealing that by 2022 consumers could be spending $100 billion a year on online grocery.Marketing Technology News: Vidyard Expands Offering to Bring Personalized Video App to Any Sales Professional, No Matter How They Work“Retailers have finite resources that are shared among competing merchandising, operational and marketing priorities. They need to make smart decisions about where to invest in digital capabilities and how those capabilities and business decisions fit in with the rest of the organization,” said Brian Ross, CEO of Precima, a global retail strategy, analytics and cloud software company that provides data-driven solutions to retailers. “The successful retailers are rapidly developing and deploying digital capabilities to compete more aggressively. Our new research separates facts from hype and discloses the tactics that are paying off today and will pay off tomorrow.”“Consumer expectations require grocery retailers to implement new customer experience models and technology architecture,” said Ivano Ortis, Vice President, IDC Retail, Manufacturing, Financial Insights. “Investing in advanced analytics, personalized offers, and localized assortment optimization, while adapting the store format to shoppers’ behavior, will allow grocery retailers to achieve short-term success.”Marketing Technology News: Agency Veteran Joao Machado Joins as Sabio’s SVP of Product MarketingAdditional key findings from the research include:63% of shoppers say personalization is important35% of shoppers will spend 26%-40% of their grocery budget online by 2020A Personalized Customer Experience strategy is a clear opportunity for brand differentiationConsumers expect a seamless experience throughout in-store and online journeysPersonalized offers are vital for ecommerce; shopping/wish lists are an opportunity to enhance shopper experience and loyaltyRetailers expect major disruption in the next three years, from operations automation, retail commerce platforms, and added-value shopper servicesThe data in the Personalization in Digital Food Retail – Shoppers Expect More InfoBrief comes from a web-based survey of more than 4,000 consumers and 444 retailers in North America, France, Italy, Spain and United Kingdom between November and December 2018.Marketing Technology News: Releases Campaign Genius, so Marketers can Plan and Optimize Out of Home (OOH) Advertising Campaigns in Minutes New Research Sponsored By Precima Shows Shoppers Expect Even More Personalization in Digital Food Retail PRNewswireJune 11, 2019, 3:55 pmJune 11, 2019 last_img read more

Visa Unveils Installment Payment Capabilities to Give Shoppers Simple and Flexible Way

first_imgNew APIs Will Allow Merchants and Financial Institutions to Give Visa Cardholders More Ways to PayVisa is making it easier to provide shoppers the ability to choose how they pay before, during or after purchase with the introduction of a suite of Visa’s installment solutions APIs. Through a pilot program, participating issuers and merchants will be able to offer their customers an installment payment experience at checkout using a Visa card they already have in their wallet.“We expect installments to become a foundational method of payment at checkout for both domestic and cross-border commerce payment transactions.”With Visa’s installment solutions, Visa cardholders will have the option to divide their total purchase amount into smaller, equal payments over a defined time period on qualifying purchases, at the store and online or while traveling abroad.“Visa’s installment capabilities are changing the game by allowing issuers to leverage an existing payment account consumers already have and are familiar with, instead of asking them to submit to a credit check, download an app or open another line of credit,” said Sam Shrauger, senior vice president, global head of issuer and consumer solutions, Visa. “We expect installments to become a foundational method of payment at checkout for both domestic and cross-border commerce payment transactions.”Visa is partnering with clients around the world to pilot a variety of installment use cases. CyberSource will be a leading payment management platform to support Visa’s installments capabilities for its participating merchant clients and acquirer partners that utilize CyberSource for global payments enablement. In addition, MakeMyTrip integrated with Simpl platform and Kotak Mahindra Bank in India, Alpha Bank, eMAG, ING Bank Romania and PayU in Romania, Russian Standard Bank in Russia and Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank and Mashreq bank in United Arab Emirates are all piloting Visa’s installments capabilities.Marketing Technology News: Gladly Named a 2019 Cool Vendor in CRM Customer Service and Support by GartnerVisa’s installment solutions aim to simplify today’s friction-filled and time-consuming installment process at checkout for buyers and sellers. Online shoppers today are typically presented with an installment offer at the final checkout screen. Consumers are then required to sign up with a designated provider, apply for a line of credit and – if approved –use their funds toward a given purchase. Each time a consumer shops with a different merchant who offers a different installment capability, they need to complete the same process again to obtain a new line of credit.Now, merchants can leverage cardholders’ existing relationships with financial institutions to provide Visa’s installment solutions at the point of sale – online or in store – through a single API-based integration. This will ultimately help merchants enhance sales, improve customer loyalty and overall cash flow, while offering their shoppers a friction-free payment experience at checkout.Globally, installments represented $1.2 trillion in payment volume in 2017 and have been growing 15 percent year-over-year, twice as fast as credit cards. A recent study found U.S. cardholders think installments are helpful for budgeting (74%) and alleviating the stress of making large purchases (70%).3 In addition, three-in-five (60%) of millennials in the U.S. said that they are interested in point of sale financing for large online purchases.Marketing Technology News: Visa to Acquire Rambus Payments PortfolioWhile installments have been gaining traction in the U.S., they have also been a popular payment option internationally. In Brazil, an early-adopter of installment payments, approximately 50 percent of all credit payment volume is already on installments.5 In Canada, 41 percent of cardholders surveyed said they would consider using installment payments on purchases of $500 or more.6Scheduled to be available to clients and partners in January 2020, Visa’s installment solutions will be one of the first new payment innovations available through Visa Next. Visa Next is a new destination for accessing new solutions in Visa’s product pipeline. For further information, please visit the Visa Next website.Marketing Technology News: New Study Shows Adoption of Business Automation Technologies is Driven by the C-Suite APICyberSourceMarketing TechnologyNewsSam ShraugerVisaVisa’s installment solutions Previous ArticlePrivitar Names Experienced Security Executive Bob Canaway as CMONext ArticleIndependent Research Firm Reports Partnerships Are Critical to Business Growth Visa Unveils Installment Payment Capabilities to Give Shoppers Simple and Flexible Way to Pay PRNewswireJune 27, 2019, 5:58 pmJune 27, 2019 last_img read more

Climeworks wants to clean the atmosphere with a fleet of trucksized vacuums

first_imgThis article is part of Troubleshooting Earth: a multi-part series that explores the bold, innovative, and potentially world-changing efforts to wield technology as a weapon against climate change.Travel back in time to the Carboniferous period, 300 million years ago, when ancient organisms inhabited lush swamps around the globe. Picture giant ferns, prehistoric trees, pigeon-sized flying insects. Plants are so productive during this period that the atmosphere overflows with oxygen; the primitive vegetation consumes untold tons of carbon dioxide.When these plants perish, they sink to the bottom of wetlands and decompose beneath layers of sand and clay, carrying their cached CO2 underground. Over the next 300 million years, this pressurized plant matter breaks down into fossil fuels — coal, oil, natural gas — until the Industrial Revolution rolls around and humans begin to make big bucks digging it up and burning it for energy.ClimeworksFossil fuels now power the globe. Despite a recent rise in renewable energy, demand for coal, oil, and natural gas hit an all-time high in 2018. That’s a grim sign for future generations. With a rise in the use of fossil fuels comes a rise in CO2 emissions, the leading cause of global warming and climate change. About 37 billion metric tons of CO2 are pumped into the atmosphere globally each year. Without a colossal shift away from our dependence on fossil fuels, and thus a dramatic drop in emissions, experts predict that Earth will continue to barrel towards a climatic catastrophe. To prevent the worst impacts of climate change, the United Nations has warned that we need to cut emissions in half by 2030. Many climate scientists meanwhile insist on zero emissions by 2050.Eliminating emissions is complicated enough (requiring a sort of choreography of policy, regulation, industry initiative, and pressure from citizens) but what about the hundred-billion metric tons of CO2 that will be emitted into the atmosphere the next few years alone? Without a concerted cleanup effort, this scattered gas may continue to plague the planet.Climeworks’ CO2 Capture Plant in Iceland ClimeworksUndoing the damageEngineers at Climeworks think they have a solution. Using machines that resemble jet engines, the Swiss startup wants to extract CO2 from thin air. From there, the gas can be siphoned off and sold to carbonated drink companies as fizz for sodas and agriculture companies as fuel for crops. Climeworks already has a deal with Coca-Cola, and it pipes CO2 to a greenhouse that grows tomatoes and cucumbers adjacent to its flagship plant in Hinwil, Switzerland.The preeminent prospect, however, is in burying the gas underground from whence it came. When injected into basalt rock, CO2 mineralizes within a couple years, locking it away for millennia. The startup aims to sell this service to energy companies and countries with socio-economic incentives to clean up the atmosphere through emissions reversal programs. Climeworks is currently running a pilot program and has plans to expand. At the Hellisheidi geothermal power plant in Iceland (top left), Climeworks takes C02 that has been removed from the air, heated by geothermal energy, and concentrated into a gas by their CO2 Capture Plants (top right) and injects it into basaltic rock formations where it reacts and forms solid carbonate (bottom left). The method is a safe and permanent solution for storing CO2 that is removed from the air and provides alternative use for CO2 outside of greenhouses operations (bottom right). ClimeworksLincoln Pratson, a geophysicist at Duke University who has also studied carbon capture and storage methods for years, wasn’t quite as definitive but he does have concerns about the Climeworks model. He told Digital Trends that, while well-meaning, the company’s model could be problematic from a commercial standpoint. It also might not be the most effective approach to removing CO2 emissions from the atmosphere.“I personally don’t see the advantage [of direct air capture],” Pratson told Digital Trends. “I think the more effective approach would be to try and capture the CO2 at major emissions points. For example, the sort of approach that has been taken to install capture systems at electric power plants that burn coal. If you can prevent a lot of CO2 from going in the atmosphere in the first place, that’s a lot more economic than trying to extract the relatively small fraction of CO2 that is found in ambient air.”Pratson also wonders whether CO2 will prove valuable (as a commodity or as sequestering service) as the technology advances and more players enter the field. “If we start to capture CO2 on a very large scale, the supply is going to overwhelm the market,” he said. “Right now, there are markets for that CO2, but I’m highly doubtful that those markets will be sufficient at scale and also provide a means for permanently sequestering the CO2.”Some think resources would be better spent on alternative solutions, including afforestation, enhanced weathering, and bioenergy with carbon capture and storage.The most promising economic option, in Pratson’s view, entails using captured CO2 for enhanced oil recovery (EOR), in which the CO2 is stored underground and used to loosen up remaining oil in oil reservoirs. “When you burn that recovered oil, it will produce CO2 but there is a net reduction on the order of something like 20 percent in emissions from oil produced by enhanced means,” he said.Climeworks rejected the idea, stating it will “under no circumstances engage in EOR or any activity that contributes to the release of fossil CO2.”Climeworks doesn’t exist in a vacuumClimate change is a complex problem that requires myriad, often complex solutions to address. There are, of course, less high-tech ways to clean up CO2 emissions, some of which date back to the origins of plant life on Earth.Given the energy and manufacturing needed to develop and operate direct air capture machines, some researchers think resources would be better spent on alternative solutions, including afforestation (planting trees), enhanced weathering (a process that entails distributing crushed silicate rocks to absorb and bind CO2 from the atmosphere), and bioenergy with carbon capture and storage, or BECCS (a process that involves growing CO2 hungry crops, burning those crops for fuels, and burying their emissions underground).Various solar and carbon geoengineering proposals designed to increase solar reflectance or capture and store carbon. Encyclopædia Britannica, IncBut these alternatives are hardly zero impact. Growing trees and crops requires the use of dwindling resources like fresh water and land area, while weathering and BECCS can burden the environment by infringing on natural ecosystems. It’s estimated that the array of CO2 collectors Climeworks has stationed on top of its roof in Switzerland, has the annual impact of around 36,000 trees.It’s unlikely that any one of these approaches will solve the emissions issue independently. A more effective approach will be to weave them into a tapestry of solutions, supported by global policy intent on ending climate change.The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) last year reported that we might not be able to limit global warming to 1.5 degrees using clean energy solutions alone. We may need to pull CO2 out of the atmosphere. “If you take all these numbers from the IPCC, you end up with something like eight to 10 billion tons…of CO₂ that need to be removed from the air every year, if we are serious about 1.5 or 2 degrees,” Wurzbacher, the Climeworks co-founder told the New York Times Magazine.“Can you make the technology so big that you can actually make a major dent in the climate?”To that end, the Swiss company considers its technology one part of a multipronged effort to pump the brakes on climate change. “We don’t believe Climeworks is the only solution,” the company spokesperson said. “We’re no silver bullet, by any means. Rather, we see ourselves as part of a portfolio of solutions.”Companies like Climeworks and Carbon Engineering have begun to demonstrate the strength of their role in that portfolio, by proving the success of their CO2 collectors. But the looming question remains: will they be able to scale the technology and have an actual impact on the globe?Climeworks’ Basalt CO2 storage facility in Iceland ClimeworksBuild it biggerScaling poses no shortage of added complexities, as Glen Peters, a research director at the Cicero Center for International Climate Research in Oslo, described the New York Times Magazine: “You start to get into really big challenges when you get to these big, large scales. If you can do one carbon-capture facility, where Carbon Engineering or Climeworks can build a big plant, great. You need to do that 5,000 times. And to capture a million tons of CO2 with direct air capture, you need a small power plant just to run that facility. So, if you’re going to build one direct-air-capture facility every day for the next 30 years to get to some of these scenarios, then in addition, we have to build a new mini power plant every day as well.”A harsh realization emerges when profiling a company like Climeworks at a time when the impacts of climate change are beginning to upend communities around the globe. Storms are getting stronger; weather is getting weirder. Earth is at the apparent cusp of a monumental shift instigated by us.For the past decade, a key question has been whether Climeworks can make money. Indeed, that question pervades the discourse today. In the years to come, it’s success may instead be measured on its environmental impact, not its economic prospect. Companies like Climeworks may be valued not for their ability to turn a profit, but for their potential to help save the planet.“The big climate change debate is going to change our discussions,” Lackner said. “The real question will become, ‘Can you make the technology so big that you can actually make a major dent in the climate?’ In my view, you can.”To check out the rest of Troubleshooting Earth, head over to the series homepage. Climeworks’ CO2 Capture Plant and technology in Switzerland and Iceland. ClimeworksOne of the company’s devices has been whirring away in Iceland for the past year and a half. During that times it’s mineralized some 50 tons of CO2, according to the company, which aims to install 50 more collectors at the site outside of Reykjavik, Iceland by the end of the year.But Climeworks is entering uncharted territory. The firm is one of the first whose aim it is to commercialize the process known as “direct air capture.” That’s because the technology is relatively new, and there isn’t yet a proven market for emissions reversal. Beyond social responsibility, energy companies and, indeed, countries apparently lack significant enough incentives to pay for such a service, since the threat of an uninhabitable planet isn’t incentive enough. And although Climeworks claims its operating costs are decreasing, it has quite a way to go before reaching the $100 per metric ton of CO2 price that experts say is the sweet spot for commercial viability.Catch and don’t releaseFounded in 2009 by Christoph Gebald and Jan Wurzbacher, two Germans who met while studying at ETH Zurich, Climeworks began as something of a pipe dream — a means to make money while tackling “the defining issue of our time.” The pair developed a direct-air-capture prototype after earning their respective master’s degrees and entered the nascent market with the ambition to forge a new industry based on commercializing CO2 capture.It currently costs them between $500 and $600 to remove a metric ton of CO2 from the atmosphere.It’s been an uphill battle. A decade on, the company still hasn’t turned a profit. But it has made progress. Climeworks’s CO2 collector has gone through a number of revisions prior to its current prototype. In its current form, the collector uses large fans to draw in ambient air, which is filtered through a specialized material that captures CO2 molecules like insects sticking to fly paper.Once the filter material is fully saturated, the collector is closed and heated, causing the CO2 molecules to unstick and collect in a container. This highly concentrated CO2 can then be sold as a raw material or injected into the Earth.For years, skeptics said it couldn’t be done, that the technology simply wouldn’t work. And then, two years ago, when Climeworks proved it could be done, the skeptics changed their tune. It couldn’t be done commercially, they said.How Climeworks’ technology works. ClimeworksThose critics may be right. According to the company’s own calculations, it currently costs them between $500 and $600 to remove a metric ton of CO2 from the atmosphere. Climeworks will need to break the $100 per metric ton mark to become commercially viable, according to Klaus Lackner, director of the Center for Negative Carbon Emissions at Arizona State University (ASU).“Once it’s below $100 [per metric ton] I think it becomes practically interesting,” Lackner told Digital Trends. “At the small scale, commercial CO2 sells for more than that. For example, if I want to buy a truckload of CO2 every couple of days for my business filling fire extinguishers, I’m going to pay $100 or $200 per ton for that CO2. If you could build devices like that can deliver CO2 at $100, you could enter that market and compete in it.”“I think there has been a lot of hype about this, and it’s not going to revolutionize anything.”The Swiss startup is confident that it can scale up its operation and drive down its costs. “Basically, we have a road map — $600, down to $400, down to $300 and $200 a ton,” Wurzbacher told the New York Times Magazine. “This is over the next five years. Down to $200 we know quite well what we’re doing.” Below $200? Well, they’re not yet sure how they’ll achieve that.Although the game plan for getting below $200 a ton is a bit murky, Lackner (who is developing his own direct air capture device at ASU) thinks it can be done. “It’s very hard to sell CO2 as a commodity for a higher price than someone can buy it,” he said. “Today it’s too expensive to do at full scale. But if you look at photovoltaic [solar cells], it is 100 times cheaper today than it was in the 60s. And wind energy is probably 50 times cheaper than it was at its inception. As we learn by doing, prices come down.At $500 per ton, the company is already within a factor of five from the $100 threshold, Lackner pointed out. “And it’s still at such a small scale, so it won’t take that much effort to get below $100. This is something that most industries have done. Is that a guarantee that it will happen? No. But it’s very plausible and it’s very likely.”Climeworks’ fully automated CO2 Capture Plant. Climeworks’ modular and scalable vacuum-like CO2 Capture Plant draws in air and chemically binds the CO2 with that air to a filter. Once the filter is saturated with CO2, it’s heated and released into a collection chamber as concentrated CO2 gas. The CO2-free air is then released back into the atmosphere. ClimeworksLackner and Climeworks are not alone in their optimism. In fact, potential competitors have begun to claim that the $100 price point is in sight. David Keith, a Harvard physicist and founder of Carbon Engineering, a Canadian company that focuses on commercialization of direct air capture, announced last year that his technology could bring costs to around $94 per ton.Don’t hold your breathBut not everyone is convinced. As with any technology of this complexity, there are a lot of moving parts and competing perspectives on how it might function in the future. Howard Herzog, an engineer at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology who has studies these machines for years, told the New York Times Magazine that costs will likely remain between $600 and $1,000 per metric ton. Behind his reasoning is the fact that the collectors need to filter tons and tons of ambient air to capture a significant enough amount of CO2 — meaning big machines, a lot of energy, and high costs of operation.“I think there has been a lot of hype about this, and it’s not going to revolutionize anything,” he said. “At best it’s going to be a bit player.” Editors’ Recommendations Changing some code on YouTube could help lower its carbon footprint The world is switching to eco-friendlier fridges and A/Cs, leaving the U.S. behind Genetically modified plants could help get to the root of climate change A giant new solar farm in Texas will harness the sun’s rays to … brew beer? An electric highway is now powering delivery trucks in Germanylast_img read more

Nest Secure home alarm promises supersleek protection

first_imgNest has launched Nest Secure, a new home security system that pulls together the company’s cameras and more into a whole-home protection platform. Revealed today in San Francisco, CA, Nest Secure comprises three main parts. Nest Guard, a hub; Nest Tag, a keychain-dangling fob; and Nest Detect, a motion sensor that also works as a door sensor. The Nest Guard also has a battery backup, if the main power supply goes down, and can optionally have a cellular connection should your home WiFi go down, too. Colored lights and spoken commands give indicators as to what the system is up to, including a countdown on how long you have to exit. Meanwhile, there’s also a built-in 85dB alarm, and a panic button.As for Nest Detect, that’s the add-on sensor, since it’s unlikely you’re just going to want to monitor a single zone. Rather than solely tracking motion, or whether a door or window opens or closes, Nest Detect does both, along with light sensing. There’s a “Quiet Open” button on it, too, with the ability to have the door it’s attached to open or close without triggering the alarm; Nest says the CR123 battery should last for up to two years, even though it’s constantly connected via Thread and Weave. Leave the whole system deactivated while you’re gone, and Nest will automatically ping out a reminder to the app so you can turn it on remotely. Should the alarm go off, meanwhile, there’s not only the local alarm from Nest Guard, but an alert on your phone, too. If you have a Nest Cam or Nest Cam IQ, meanwhile, you can then check any movement from whatever room it covers. Optionally, there’s the ability to add a subscription-based 24/7 professional monitoring package, from MONI. If you have other devices hooked up via the Works with Nest program, meanwhile, Nest Secure can mimic what your house would look like if you were still home. That includes turning on the lights and more. Nest Secure will be sold as a starter pack, including the Nest Guard hub, two Nest Detect sensors, and two Nest Tags. That’ll be $499. Additional Nest Detect units will be $59 apiece, while Nest Tags will be $25. A Nest Secure pack with the Nest Cam Outdoor will be $598. If you want cellular backup, that’ll be $5 per month or $50 per year, while MONI 24/7 mentoring will be announced “in the coming months.” Nest Secure is available to preorder today, and will ship in the US in November. European and Canadian availability will follow on in 2018. Nest Guard looks a little like a truncated Google Home, though where the smart speaker has a ring of lights on top, the new hub has a keypad and other buttons. It’s connected with WiFi to your home router, but it also has a motion sensor built in. Nest is envisaging people putting it in their hall or main room, where it’ll track motion but also be used to turn the security on or off.The latter can be done via punching in a PIN code, or by tapping the Nest Tag on top. That means no remembering a code, just dangling your keychain near the top of the unit. With scheduling, you’ll be able to set up times for when the Nest Tag works: that way, you can allow temporary access for people like dog walkers or cleaners, but not complete access. Lens Position: 700, image_Antigua_hero_FPN_v1last_img read more

Trump nationwide 5G network mulled but FCC chief isnt happy

first_imgThe US government is considering seizing the spectrum to build a nationwide 5G network, new leaks suggest, though Trump’s own FCC chief strongly opposes the plans. 5G, or fifth-generation, networks are the next step in not only mobile broadband, promising much greater speeds than today’s 4G LTE networks, but more ubiquitous connectivity in general, as more and more devices join the Internet of Things (IoT). Story TimelineMassive cyberattack the result of malware-infected IoT devicesCyber Shield Act IoT security labeling proposed by Dems That will take advantage of 5G’s potential for much greater power frugality than earlier generations of wireless connectivity. However, it will also present an increasing security risk. More connected devices, if not managed and secured properly, will also offer more ways for hackers and rival nation states to compromise those networks. It’s that which appears to have concerned the Trump administration, and perhaps not without some reason. Chinese hackers have been blamed for compromising a number of high-profile – and potentially dangerous – systems, including commercial airlines, power stations, and more. Meanwhile, investigations are still underway around what impact Russian hacking might have had on the outcome of the US presidential election.According to Axios, the Trump administration is considering heavy-handed ways to prevent that from escalating come the arrival of 5G and more ubiquitous connectivity. A presentation and memo – both produced by a senior official from the National Security Council, and recently shown to senior members of other agencies in the US government – have leaked, making the recommendation that the US requires “a centralized nationwide 5G network within three years.” According to the documents, there are two possible ways of doing that. On the one hand, the US government could both pay for and handle the construction of a single 5G network. On the other, wireless providers would build their own 5G networks. However, according to insiders familiar with the motivations of the documents’ preparation, experts are doubtful as to whether the second option could ever provide sufficient protection from hacks by rival nation states and others. As the memo paints it, while there’d be a significant investment required to construct a nationwide, government-run 5G network in the US, there would be a number of benefits that could come from it. For a start, it’s suggested, it could be a source of ongoing income: US carriers, like AT&T and Verizon, could rent access to the system. It could also be used as a baseline – or even a mandatory requirement – for each state’s implementation of wireless equipment. That’s been topical recently, what with push-back against using foreign hardware providers such as Huawei and ZTE.It could even end up being exported abroad. One possibility the memo apparently outlines is offering the technology to partners and emerging markets internationally, as an attempt to “inoculate developing countries” against China’s influence. It’s unclear whether that would be on a paid basis. While the administration is yet to comment on the leak, FCC chairman Ajit Pai has not been slow to make his opinion heard. In a statement issued today, he vocally opposed the idea of a nationwide 5G network. Such a scheme, Pai argues, would run counter to lessons learned with the roll-out of 4G, in addition to being needlessly expensive.“I oppose any proposal for the federal government to build and operate a nationwide 5G network. The main lesson to draw from the wireless sector’s development over the past three decades — including American leadership in 4G — is that the market, not government, is best positioned to drive innovation and investment. What government can and should do is to push spectrum into the commercial marketplace and set rules that encourage the private sector to develop and deploy next-generation infrastructure. Any federal effort to construct a nationalized 5G network would be a costly and counterproductive distraction from the policies we need to help the United States win the 5G future” Ajit Pai, chairman, FCCCritics of Pai will undoubtedly point to longstanding concerns that the chairman has the interests of telecommunications businesses in the forefront of his mind. That’s certainly been one of the more vocal complaints about his attitude toward net neutrality. However, Pai is unlikely to be the only person who has a problem with the concept of the government pumping what would likely amount to billions of dollars into a 5G network of its own. Whether this scheme goes ahead – or whether too much is being read into one memo – remains to be seen. However, there’s no denying that network security issues are going to be increasingly prevalent in the coming years, as more and more devices get online. last_img read more

Galaxy S8 Oreo update stopped because of this grave reason

first_imgAfter what felt like an eternity, owners of the Galaxy S8 and S8+ were naturally overjoyed to finally receive the much-awaited Android 8.0 Oreo update. And, naturally, they were equally cross when Samsung halted and pulled out the update almost immediately. While they definitely have reason for their ill-feelings, Samsung has an even bigger reason why it did so. Apparently, the update has caused some handsets to randomly reboot, which would have been an even bigger fiasco than pulling it out before it spreads any further. There does seem to be some truth to Samsung’s excuse. According to SamMobile, some early updaters did report experiencing unexpected reboots. While not as fatal as, say, LG’s notorious bootloops, they are just as frustrating, especially if they eventually lead to data loss.Fortunately, Samsung hasn’t ignored these complaints. Although it says there have only been a limited number of cases, pulling the update out hints it suspects it would be much more than that. Here’s what Samsung had to say:“Following a limited number of cases where Galaxy S8 and S8+ devices have rebooted unexpectedly with the Android 8.0 Oreo, we have temporarily stopped the rollout of the update. We are investigating the issue internally to ensure that the impact to the affected devices is minimized and the rollout of the update can resume as quickly as possible.”All good, right? Not exactly. This would have probably been acceptable if not for that fact that Samsung started its Oreo beta program for the Galaxy S8 and S8+ back in November. And that would presumably have been preceded by a limited or private testing period. Samsung definitely had a lot of time to have ironed out something as serious as a bootloop, especially if it happens on not a few devices. AdChoices广告last_img read more

Project Verify unveiled by major US carriers to eliminate app passwords

first_imgProject Verify aims to be the solution, at least for smartphone users, utilizing a multi-factor solution that looks at things like IP address and SIM card details to verify users. The entire process is designed to be harder to trick, helping keep user accounts safe.As explained in the video above, users would need to authorize an app to use Verify, assuming the app itself supports the verification option. It doesn’t appear any apps currently support Project Verify, though we may see that change in time. As well, Verify can be used for two-factor authentication.There are obvious upsides to such a service, one of which is no longer having to manually enter the password for a supported app. However, it does seem that anyone with access to a phone using Verify could access these accounts if they’re able to access the phone itself. That would put the burden on the handset’s security and require the user to setup a biometric barrier, PIN, or similar option.SOURCE: Project Verify Unfortunately, an increasing number of data breaches have left consumers exposed. Usernames and passwords aren’t just cumbersome to use, they also leave any given account vulnerable if the details are leaked. Two-factor authentication is one solution to help safeguard these accounts, but even it can be foiled in the right circumstances. The United States’ four biggest wireless carriers — Verizon, AT&T, Sprint, and T-Mobile — have teamed to launch Project Verify, a single sign-on service that reduces how many passwords someone needs. Project Verify is designed for smartphone users, existing to authenticate any apps that require logins so the user doesn’t have to enter a unique password.last_img read more