Over the past few days I’ve been wrestling with a very troubling thought.
It started with the simple question, “Ten years from now, anyone who is frustrated with those in power, whether it’s a local, national, or international issue, what options will they have for protesting what they see as an injustice, inequities, or outright corruption?”
Voicing complaints on social media like Facebook or Twitter, organizing a sign-waving rally on the Capitol steps, or taking out a full-page ad in a newspaper will probably still be options, but they’re also a quick way to be branded a troublemaker.
The US tech scene has been shaken with allegations that authorities are monitoring US and international Internet users on Facebook, Google, YouTube and countless other services from the likes of Yahoo, Apple, Skype, AOL, Microsoft and more.
Amazon is looking to nurture the next generation of scriptwriters, directors and cinematographers with a new, free online tool called Amazon Storyteller, which helps convert initial scripts into dynamic and professional storyboards.
The Chicago Sun-Times’ decision to lay off its entire staff of 28 photographers was widely criticized as a knee-jerk response by clueless managers, but the fact remains that newspaper cost structures are too high, and crowdsourcing works.
FOR translating a 22-minute video from English into Spanish at short notice, 7Brands Global Content, a professional-translation firm based in New York, quoted.“approximately $1,500”. .Elance.com and oDesk.com, the two busiest among several newish online marketplaces had bids from Argentina, Brazil, Indonesia, Mexico and the Philippines. Each of them offered a flat rate for the completed job, ranging from $33.33 down to just $22.22.
Work environments need not feel like a military camp or a ruthless command-and-control operation. The process of work should be fun, innovative, creative and very engaging. I believe that the best way to create a connected and engaged organization is by invoking a “Flat Army” mindset. Why? Let’s unpack that analogy:
To be flat is to be on a level surface, not in a hierarchy. To be in an army (from armata, the Latin term referenced in 1533, meaning a flotilla of vessels) is to be part of a large group of people who are committed to similar aims or beliefs.
"What technologies will most radically transform human life in the next twelve years? The McKinsey Global Institute looked at more than a hundred possible candidates across a variety of technology fields and narrowed the most potentially disruptive down to a dozen. They are, in order of size of potential impact:
-Mobile Internet defined as "increasingly inexpensive and capable mobile computing devices and Internet connectively."
-Automation of knowledge work or "intelligent software systems that perform knowledge work tasks involving unstructrured commands and subtle judgments." An example might be IBM’s Watson system.
-Internet of Things or "networks of low-cost sensors and actuators for data collection, monitoring, decision making and process optimization."
-Cloud Technology or "use of computer hardware and software resources delivered over a network or the Internet, often as a service."
-Advanced Robotics or "increasingly capable robots with enhanced senses, dexterity, and intelligence used to automate tasks or augment humans." This category is perhaps most famously personified by the Baxter robot (profiled in the May-June issue of THE FUTURIST magazine).
-Autonomous and Near-Autonomous Vehicles.
-Next Generation Genomics or "fast, low-cost gene sequencing, advanced big-data analytics, and synthetic biology."
-Advanced Materials defined as "materials designed to have superior characteristics." Much of what we today call nanotechnology would fall within this category.
-Advanced Oil and Natural Gas Recovery
"Of the above, the Mobile Internet, which could change the lives of more than 5 billion people around the globe, the automation of knowledge work, and the Internet of Things would have by far the largest economic impacts, according to McKinsey."
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According to Reuters, Amazon is ready to expand its AmazonFresh grocery delivery service to Los Angeles and the San Francisco Bay Area in 2013, and, provided that those tests go well, 20 new markets in 2014.