May 27, 2014

It’s a Bird, it’s a Plane….it’s India's first pizza-delivering drone!
In perhaps the most audacious and value-for-money stunt that the city of Mumbai has yet seen, a once unknown hole-in-the-wall Pizzeria at Kemp's Corner in tony South Mumbai used a drone to delivery a Pizza to a location nearby (Worli), giving further credence to the notion that India can be both way ahead of its time and way behind it. While this is apparently not the first pizza in the world delivered by a drone—A Dominos franchise snagged that badge of honor by dong so in the UK last year—it certainly was the most attention grabbing.

Microsoft to the FBI: Drop dead
The FBI backed off, and agreed to call back the letter. Yesterday, documents related to the case were unsealed by a federal court in Seattle. You can read them here. What's noteworthy about the case, the papers show, is that involves a corporate customer using cloud-based Office 365 and cloud data. That's Microsoft's future, and likely one of the reasons it fought back against the FBI. In its petition against the FBI request, Microsoft wrote: "As more users migrate from locally installed software and locally stored data to cloud-based computing platforms, Microsoft increasingly is entrusted to store its customers' data safely and securely."

Strategic principles for competing in the digital age
Digital capabilities increasingly will determine which companies create or lose value. Those shifts take place in the context of industry evolution, which isn’t monolithic but can follow a well-worn path: new trends emerge and disruptive entrants appear, their products and services embraced by early adopters (exhibit). Advanced incumbents then begin to adjust to these changes, accelerating the rate of customer adoption until the industry’s level of digitization—among companies but, perhaps more critically, among consumers as well—reaches a tipping point. Eventually, what was once radical is normal, and unprepared incumbents run the risk of becoming the next Blockbuster.

IT Professionals Overworked, Losing Pride in Their Jobs
"While the majority of IT professionals are proud they chose a career in IT, the survey results point to the potential of a trend towards dissatisfaction or disengagement that organizations need to monitor," Jason Hayman, market research manager for TEKsystems, said in a statement. "The shift so far is slight, but if it continues and organizations do not prepare for and adjust their talent management and workforce strategies accordingly, they could face even greater turnover, possibly causing even more stress and increased workloads for those employees that stick around."

Technology Companies Are Pressing Congress to Bolster Privacy Protections
“Almost every American thinks that it is frightening that we have a law that suggests that the government has the right to read your email after only 180 days,” Mr. Lee said. “It’s an easy issue in which to achieve bipartisan compromise and consensus.” The bill would require a search warrant for access to electronic communications, with exceptions for some emergency situations. It would also require the government to notify individuals within 10 days that their information was being investigated. However, it does not address rules for location data, like GPS information from an individual’s cellphone.

Getting started with a mobility assessment
To craft a strong mobility policy, start by defining your business goals and the devices and users that fall within its scope. For example, is your objective to enable business access under BYOD? Is it to enable secure visitor access to the Internet or guest services? Or do you want to ensure that every employee's mobile device complies with an industry regulation? Clarify your policy's scope by specifying which mobile devices are included, such as smartphones and tablets that carry or access business data. You may also exclude certain endpoints, such as IT-owned or personal-use-only devices.

Next generation hotspots: The future of Wi-Fi?
The key to NGH is something called Passpoint. Passpoint is an industry certification that your device has 802.1x and 802.11u functionality. IEEE 802.1x is a way to securely authenticate to a network. It is used in many businesses as a way for workers to connect to corporate networks, making the network trust a certain device. 802.11u is what creates the seamless part of the network identification and authentication process. “With 802.11u, a Passpoint-enabled smartphone and a Passpoint-enabled access point (AP) can have a very involved conversation, without the user connecting,” said Gunning. “The smartphone sends out packets to see what’s around, which is a process called beaconing.”

Beginner's Guide to HTML5 & CSS3 - HTML5 API Grab Bag
Wow, the future of web landscape looks excitingly promising. However, reaching this stage is not without its challenges. For one thing, the supports of the current browsers must be improved and streamlined. For another, the awareness and education on HTML5 APIs among the web communities must be stepped up. Some would have argued about "the chicken or the egg" causality dilemma. I would argue that both can proceed in parallel. Over the years, HTML5 specification has added a bag full of APIs that cover a wide spectra of functionality and features that power the future web browsers and mobile devices.

Mint 17: The best Linux desktop to date
Unlike most of its Linux brothers and sisters, Mint also includes many proprietary programs. So, for example, you can play Adobe Flash videos and DVDs from your Mint PC without jumping through any hoops. Mint doesn't include proprietary drivers such as the ATI or NVIDIA drivers; it does make it easy to install drivers. Another nice feature, which Mint does shares with most modern Linux distributions, is that you don't have to commit yourself to it. You can try it out by running it from a live USB thumb-drive or DVD drive before actually installing it. In my case — since I know Mint like the back of my hand — I went ahead and installed it not just on test systems but on my production desktop and laptop. Yes, I'm a brave Linux user!

You could one day be driving on a solar-powered smart streets
The Sagle, Idaho-based Solar Roadways company is now running a crowdsourcing campaign on to raise more money to ramp up production of their hexagonal-shaped Solar Road Panel technology. The hexagon panels are made up of four layers. There's a half-inch thick glass surface, followed by a layer of LED lights, an electronic support structure (circuit board) and a base layer made of recyclable materials. The hexagon-shaped Solar Road Panels connect to make a grid. "We can produce three times more power than we use as a nation. That will eliminate the need for coal-fired power plants," Scott Brusaw said.

Quote for the day:

"People will follow you when you build the character to follow through.” -- Orrin Woodward

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