It might not be tomorrow. It might not even be five years from now. But some day, Apple’s iOS platform will support home screen widgets. Apple’s unique iOS widget implementation is thought of by some as offering the best of both worlds. Widget support is there and it’s somewhat versatile, but widgets are buried off screen, forcing users to swipe to the right on either the lock screen or the first home screen in order to access the widget pane. On one hand, this allows iOS to support widgets without causing a big drain on the battery. On the other, it means zero-touch access to information, which is arguably the best thing about mobile widgets, is not possible.

Since iOS 10 widgets are hidden off screen, many people don’t even both using the feature. But we’re here to tell you that it’s time to give widgets another shot on your iPhone — and in this post, we’ll show you 10 iOS 10 widgets that should be installed on every iPhone.

recent thread on Reddit made me realize how often I actually do use widgets. I was pretty skeptical of how useful iOS widgets would be when Apple first introduced them, considering how limited their utility was (and still is). Though they are indeed limited compared to Android widgets, iOS 10 widgets can still be incredibly useful.

Whether or not you currently use any widgets on your iPhone, you’ll find links to 10 different iOS 10 widgets that you should definitely check out below.

AirLaunch Pro

This is easily one of my favorite iOS 10 widgets. It allows you to create a wide range of custom actions that are all accessible with a single tap from within an AirLaunch widget. Examples of how I use the widget include accessing the iPhone’s hotspot and VPN features each with a single touch, and copying my address to the clipboard so I can quickly and easily paste it into an email or elsewhere. Of course, that’s just the tip of the iceberg with this nifty app.

Nearby Traffic

Everyone uses the Google Maps app, but did you know there are a bunch of useful iOS 10 widgets baked in? The Nearby Traffic widget gives you instant access to information about traffic around your current location.

Nearby Transit

Another great iOS 10 widget baked into Google Maps is the Nearby Transit widget, which makes it insanely easy to find public transit nearby.

Fantastical 2

The best calendar widget in the App Store, hands down.

Copied

Copied is a great clipboard manager that saves things you copy to your clipboard so you can access more than just the last text you copied.

Workflow

Workflow is an endlessly useful automation app, and the widget is just as endlessly useful as the app itself.

Deliveries

This app makes it incredibly simple to track all of the packages en route to your home or office, and now you don’t even have to open the app to get updates.

Stocks Widget

This free widget lets you see what your entire portfolio is doing in near real time with a single swipe to your widget panel.

MiniStats

This nifty widget shows you information such as how much cellular data you’ve used in your current billing cycle.

Dark Sky

The best iOS weather app also packs one of the best iOS 10 weather widgets. Instead of blasting you with all kinds of weather data you don’t need, Dak Sky shows you the current weather conditions, the day’s high and low, and the likelihood of precipitation for the next hour.

BONUS

I didn’t list this among the 10 widgets above since not everyone has an August Smart Lock, but if you do have one, you absolutely must check out the widget. Instead of having to fumble with the app on your phone or your Apple Watch, the August widget lets you either lock or unlock your Smart Lock with a single tap.

Author:  Zach Epstein

Source:  http://bgr.com/

Categorized in Science & Tech

Cloud data center traffic will exceed 14 zettabytes in 2020, an increase of 262 percent from 2015, according to the Cisco Global Cloud Index (PDF). Released Thursday, the report projects total global data center traffic to reach 15.3 ZB annually by 2020, with 92 percent of all workloads being processed in the cloud by 2020.

It also forecasts the number of hyperscale data centers to rise by 226 percent from 259 at the end of 2015 to 485 by 2020.

The majority of workloads will tip over from private to public cloud this year, Cisco says, and public cloud will continue to grow by 35 percent CAGR throughout the forecast period (compared to 15 percent for private), boosted by demand for cost efficiency and agility, along with strengthening public cloud security.

SaaS workloads will grow from 65 percent of total cloud workloads in 2015 to 74 percent by 2020, while the share taken by IaaS will drop from 26 to 17 percent, and PaaS will drop from 9 to 8.  Cisco also forecasts enterprises’ share of workloads to decrease, while consumers’ share will rise, though the enterprise share will be buoyed by big data and IoT workloads. In its report last year, Cisco noted that personal cloud storage would be used by 55 percent (2 billion) of the consumer internet population by 2019.

While data center traffic is growing, architectural innovations like software-defined networking and network function virtualization are streamlining it, the index says, and the density of workloads per server is forecast to grow from 7.3 in 2015 to 11.9 by 2020.

“The IT industry has taken cloud computing from an emerging technology to an essential scalable and flexible networking solution. With large global cloud deployments, operators are optimizing their data center strategies to meet the growing needs of businesses and consumers,” said Doug Webster, Cisco’s vice president of service provider marketing. “We anticipate all types of data center operators continuing to invest in cloud-based innovations that streamline infrastructures and help them more profitably deliver web-based services to a wide range of end users.”

Regionally, the Middle East and Africa will lead in data center traffic growth, with a 34 percent CAGR, but will still be “only” 451 exabytes in 2020. North Amercian cloud data center traffic is expected to grow by 27 percent, from 2.2 ZB in 2015 to 7.1 ZB in 2020.

The Internet of Everything (IoE) will generate 600 ZB of data by 2020, the report says, but hardly more than 6 ZB of that will be stored.

Data center space is being snapped up worldwide, with large chunks of data center space in particularly high demand. In October AWS announced the launch of three new cloud data centers in Ohio, leaving only a couple hundred to go by 2020.

Author:  CHRIS BURT

Source:  http://www.datacenterknowledge.com/

Categorized in Science & Tech

BEIJING — China is trying to capitalize on President-elect Donald Trump's hardline immigration stance and vow to clamp down on a foreign worker visa program that has been used to recruit thousands from overseas to Silicon Valley.

Leading tech entrepreneurs, including Robin Li, the billionaire CEO of Baidu, China's largest search engine, see Trump's plans as a huge potential opportunity to lure tech talent away from the United States.

The country already offers incentives of up to $1 million as signing bonuses for those deemed "outstanding" and generous subsidies for start-ups.

Image: Robin Li

Meanwhile, the Washington Post last month reported on comments made by Steve Bannon, who is now the president-elect's chief strategist, during a radio conversation with Trump in Nov. 2015.

Bannon, the former Breitbart.com publisher, indicated that he didn't necessarily agree with the idea that foreign talent that goes to school in America should stay in America.

"When two-thirds or three-quarters of the CEOs in Silicon Valley are from South Asia or from Asia, I think ...," Bannon said, trailing off. "A country is more than an economy. We're a civic society."

While Trump's unprecedented telephone conversation with Taiwan President Tsai Ing-wen on Friday may worry leaders in Beijing, comments like Bannon's and the president-elect's campaign pledges are music to the ears of tech leaders like Li.

Image: U.S. President-elect Donald Trump tours a Carrier factory with Greg Hayes, CEO of United Technologies (L) in Indianapolis

U.S. President-elect Donald Trump tours a Carrier factory with Vice President-elect Mike Pence in Indianapolis, Indiana, U.S., December 1, 2016. MIKE SEGAR / Reuters

"I read that an adviser to President-elect Donald Trump openly complained that three-quarters of CEOs in Silicon Valley are Asian immigrants," the influential entrepreneur said in a recent keynote speech at a state-sponsored conference, a copy of which was provided to NBC News by Baidu.

"Many entrepreneurs in Silicon Valley have expressed worries, especially after Trump's election, about the harm to the United States' capabilities in innovation," Li told the audience at China's third annual World Internet Conference. "I truly hope that these excellent talents from various countries will migrate to China and help China play a more important role on the stage of global innovation."

He added: "I hope everybody will come to China, let's innovate together."

As part of the plan for his first 100 days in office, Trump has vowed to prioritize immigration issues and "direct the Department of Labor to investigate all abuses of visa programs that undercut the American worker."

On the campaign trail, he denounced the H-1B visa program, which admits 85,000 foreign skilled workers and graduate students annually — many of whom work in the tech industry and eventually become legal U.S. residents or citizens.

"It's very bad for business … and it's very bad for our workers and it's unfair for our workers. And we should end it," he said.

He sparked more uncertainty by naming Sen. Jeff Sessions, a long-time critic of the skilled-worker visa program, as his pick for attorney general.

Sessions has accused tech firms in Silicon Valley of exploiting the program to pass over American labor for foreign workers to cut technology costs.

China's efforts to attract foreign workers has traditionally been hurt by Beijing's web censorship and strict government control of the internet.

China has around 700 million internet users — who type a mind-boggling 35 billion words every day, according to the latest survey examining the behavior of the country's netizens.

But Li argued that the "global center of innovation is shifting," describing the world's second-largest economy as the "biggest and fastest growing internet market."

A Baidu spokesperson told NBC News that the company has a program to attract "top-tier talent" in China and abroad, to advance "Baidu's technological leadership in areas including artificial intelligence, big data, machine learning and autonomous diving." 

Image: A Baidu sign

A Baidu sign is seen during the third annual World Internet Conference in Jiaxing, China. ALY SONG / Reuters

Hugo Barra, a Brazilian computer scientist, stunned the technology world in 2013 by leaving his post as Google's vice-president in charge of its Android division to join a private Chinese startup called Xiaomi.

As Xiaomi's international vice-president, Barra has taken charge of global expansion for the smartphone company that has been compared to Apple for its slick marketing and management.

The Beijing-based firm has now become the world's fourth-biggest smartphone maker and is broadening its businesses to mobile apps, laptops and Wi-Fi-enabled consumer electronics.

Analysts have also noted China's emergence as the world's biggest e-commerce market and a leading innovator in mobile services, on the strength of the country's estimated 600 million smartphone users, which is expected to reach 700 million by 2019.

WeChat, China's smash-hit messaging app owned by Tencent, the country's most valuable tech company, has also become a mobile payment giant that is chasing market leader Alipay. The two companies had the lion's share of last year's mobile transactions of $235 billion, pushing China ahead of the U.S. where the market was $231 billion, according to data provider Euromonitor International.

China is also leading the global innovation race. Of the 2.9 million patent applications worldwide in 2015, about 1 million of them came from China. In comparison, 526,000 applications came from the U.S., according to data released by the World Intellectual Property Organization.

Success stories include Dajiang Innovations (DJI) — the world's biggest maker of consumer and small commercial drones.

The Chinese start-up boasts three factories in the booming city of Shenzhen, a marketing office in Los Angeles that works with filmmakers, and a Frankfurt office which deals with content partners.

Image: DJI drones

Paul Pan, DJI's product manager, saw the potential of the company and moved to Shenzhen from Silicon Valley in 2013.

During a factory visit last year, he demonstrated to NBC News why DJI was an industry leader. From humble beginnings in a dorm room in 2006, the private company is now valued at over $10 billion.

Shenzhen itself is now widely considered "China's Silicon Valley" and has taken the lead in rolling out a massive subsidy program to attract high-tech talent.

The southern city is currently led by Communist Party boss Ma Xingrui, a space scientist and former chief of China's moon mission. His ambition is to make the city a leading innovation hub as it sheds its image as a manufacturer of cheap goods for export.

Shenzhen's recruitment program has attracted 1219 "high-level talents" as of last year, according to Shenzhen Daily newspaper, of which 74 are "foreign experts."

Under a multi-category scheme updated in October last year, the highest incentive for so-called "Outstanding Talent" — a designation open for foreigners from 24 countries, including the United States, if the individual won a Nobel Prize in economics or physics — is an outright lump sum allowance of close to $1 million or 10 years free housing in a 2,200-square-foot apartment.

A lower category, an "Overseas Talent" who starts a business in the city, can receive a subsidy of up to $150,000.

In the past, Chinese companies could only attract Chinese engineers who studied abroad, Baidu's Li lamented.

But he pointed out that Trump's plans have created hope for China to attract "more and more talents from various countries and various nationalities."

Author:  ERIC BACULINAO

Source:  http://www.nbcnews.com/

Categorized in Science & Tech

It’s been a long time since tablets were the up-and-coming hotness. Companies learned years ago that people just weren’t going to buy a new tablet every year—and that’s led some to abandon the form factor altogether. In fact, some of our favorite tablets from 2015 such as the Dell Venue 8 7000, the Samsung Tab S2, and the iPad mini 4 didn’t get updates this year at all.

Even with the fervor around tablets dying down, we got some fantastic tablets, especially in the 2-in-1 category. So here they are: the 10 best tablets of 2016.

10. LG G Pad X 8.0

Screen Shot 2016-12-02 at 3.38.59 PM.png

You may not have heard of the LG G Pad X 8.0 (which yes, is an unfortunate name), but it’s a new midrange tablet from LG available exclusively for T-Mobile. It works best as an e-reader, with the balance of a large screen and portable size you’ll find in an Android tablet. However, the Reading Mode makes late-night reading easy on the eyes, and the versatility of Android 6.0 Marshmallow lets you read e-books from almost any digital bookshelf out there including comics. It’s probably not going to blow you away, but at $240 with LTE connectivity, it’s a great value for what you’re getting.

9. Huawei Matebook

Screen Shot 2016-12-02 at 1.35.53 PM.png

Every device manufacturer has a 2-in-1 these days, and Huawei’s Matebook is the company’s first attempt at one. While the Matebook looks great in all respects—from the beautiful thin design to the brown leather case. As a tablet itself, it’s everything you’d expect from a device with a $699 pricetag. It doesn’t hold up quite as well in terms of the 2-in-1 aspect thanks to the wobbly case, but if all you’re looking for is a terrific Android tablet, the Matebook is a good (but expensive) option.

8. Asus ZenPad Z8

Screen Shot 2016-12-02 at 1.38.28 PM.png

On the far other end of the price spectrum is the ZenPad Z8 from Asus, exclusively for Verizon. It retails at just $149, making it the most affordable tablet on the list. It’s not going to impress you with its build quality or performance, but the ZenPad stands out in a market flooded with mostly junky midrange tablets. Without updates to budget-friendly tablets like the Nexus 7, Dell Venue 8 7000, or the NVIDIA Shield Tablet K1, the ZenPad Z8 takes the mantle on for cheap tablet that you won’t want to get rid of in six months.

7. Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Tablet

Screen Shot 2016-12-02 at 3.12.15 PM.png

When you think tablet, you’re not usually looking in the $1000+ territory, but that’s exactly what the ThinkPad X1 Tablet is. In other words, it’s obvious that Lenovo didn’t make this device for the average person—it’s for business professionals who are dedicated to the ThinkPad brand. The truth is for that market niche, the 2-in-1 X1 Tablet is fantastic as a machine for getting work done. Like most 12-inch tablets, the X1 Tablet is a little big too really use as a tablet, but with its great hi-res screen, built-in projector, and Lenovo’s proprietary pen, it’s potential uses are countless. The X1 Tablet may not have many takers, but those who can afford it won’t be disappointed.

6. Huawei MediaPad M3

Screen Shot 2016-12-02 at 11.04.29 AM.png

We didn’t get an update to the universally-loved iPad mini 4 this year, but this competitor from Huawei does a great job of filling that hole. The MediaPad M3 is impressive at being what it claims to be: a tablet for consuming media. This 8.4-inch tablet has a beautiful hi-res display, perfect for lounging on the couch with your favorite Netflixshow or game. A premium 8-inch Android tablet that isn’t trying to also sell you a keyboard is surprisingly hard to find these days. The MediaPad has Huawei’s slightly tacky Android skin over it, but installing a Google launcher can solve a lot of that.

5. Lenovo Yoga Tab 3 Pro

Screen Shot 2016-12-02 at 3.23.46 PM.png

Although we’ll soon be getting the Tab 3 Plus, the Yoga Tab 3 Pro is an excellent little tablet, provided you like what Lenovo is doing with its tablet design language. In some ways, it’s just another 8-inch Android tablet—in others it’s unlike any one you’ve ever seen. Just pull out the kickstand and you’ve got the ability to project an image up on your blank wall straight from the back of the device. While it doesn’t project in 1080p or anywhere near 1000 lumens, the result is still impressive and unique in a remarkably small package.

4. Amazon Kindle (2016)

Screen Shot 2016-12-02 at 11.09.41 AM.png

While having everything on what device is great, there are some things that the Kindle can do that a traditional tablet will never be able to do. The battery life, readability, and easy connection to Amazon’s Kindle service makes it a product that stands out for those who read a lot, especially if they’re travelers. The newest Kindle doesn’t make any drastic changes to the formula, but it’s lighter and thinner than previous models, making it that much easier to throw in your bag.

3. Lenovo IdeaPad Miix 510

Screen Shot 2016-12-02 at 3.25.24 PM.png

We didn’t get a new Surface or Surface Pro this year, leaving the window open for a company like Lenovo to offer its alternative. Late this year we got the IdeaPad Miix 510, a 2-in-1 Surface competitor that actually works wells as both a laptop and a tablet. With a Core i series processor, Windows 10, and a unique watchband-style kickstand, the Miix 510 is made for getting actual work done. At a starting price of only $599 (with an extra $130 for the detachable keyboard), the IdeaPad Miix 510 is the best 2-in-1 Windows 10 tablet to come out in 2016.

2. Pixel-C

Screen Shot 2016-12-02 at 11.05.50 AM.png

Although technically the Pixel-C was released in late December, it really wasn’t available until 2016—hence it’s position on this list. The Pixel-C is Google’s first tablet, built ground-up by Google. Replacing the Nexus tablets, the Pixel-C is possibly the best designed and constructed Android tablet ever made. It’s got an all-aluminum finish, a really innovative magnetic keyboard attachment, and a beautiful hi-res display.

What’s more, Android has finally gotten better at multitasking, making the Pixel-C more useful than ever before. Hopefully we’ll see Google update the Pixel-C again soon with more performance and battery life, but for now it’s the best Android tablet you can buy.

1. 9.7-inch iPad Pro

Screen Shot 2016-12-02 at 3.51.19 PM.png

In just about every way that matters, the 9.7-inch iPad Pro is the long-awaited up to the iPad Air 2. It’s the traditional iPad size, but with all of the multitasking and power that came with with the massive 12.9-inch iPad Pro. That means it works with the Apple Pencil, new keyboard cover, and got a performance—all to make for a product you might just be able to get some work done on.

More than anything of that, though, the iPad continues to be the go-to tablet in a more general sense. Apple has pushed to make the iPad the premiere location for exclusive fullscreen apps that are built with the iPad in mind. The hardware and design are simply the best—and with the new splitscreen mode, it looks like the software is finally catching up too. In many ways, the iPad Pro is Apple following Microsoft’s lead with what it has achieved with the Surface Pro, but when you’re building on the foundation that is the iPad, it only sweetens the deal.

Author:  Luke Larsen

Source:  https://www.pastemagazine.com

Categorized in Science & Tech
Just Eat has delivered its first take away with a delivery robot to a customer in Greenwich, launching a pilot project that will involve transporting food in the city using autonomous vehicles. 
 
Following extensive testing, Europe's biggest online delivery food company Just Eat has become the first in the world to successfully transport a takeaway with a robot. 
 
The maiden delivery comes months after the company said it would be testing the robots in the area. Just Eat announced the partnership with Starship Technologies, makers of slow moving pavement droids, back in July and said it would start robotic deliveries later that month. 
Starship's robots are autonomous and unlock with a code sent to the customers' phone
 
 
Starship's robots are autonomous and unlock with a code sent to the customers' phone CREDIT: JUST EAT

Just Eat has plans to expand the use of robotic delivery drivers in the capital in a move that could long term see the number of human drivers employed by restaurants cut back. The robot, which has been tested in more than 40 cities across Europe, costs around £1 per delivery compared with the £3 to £6 it costs for a human courier.
 
"We are delighted to add robot home delivery to the Just Eat service," said Graham Corfield, UK managing director of Just Eat. "Now that we are live in Greenwich, we're working towards a larger rollout of the pilot programme across London in the New Year."
 
The futuristic courier, created by two former co-founders of Skype who launched Starship Technologies in 2014, is a six-wheeled automated trolley that travels at speeds of up to 4mph.
 
It can carry up to 10 kilograms or three shopping bags and has a range of 10 miles, meaning it can transport food within a two to three mile radius, which takes 15 to 30 minutes. The robot can direct itself and avoid obstacles using a GPS signal and nine cameras, but it is also monitored remotely at all times.
 
Customers cannot choose to have the Starship robot deliver food, but will be alerted in the app if one is on its way to them. When the robot arrives, the customer receives a notification with a code that unlocks the pavement robot. 

Author:  Cara McGoogan

Source:  http://www.telegraph.co.uk/

Categorized in Science & Tech

Results of the “Web IQ” Quiz

American internet users’ knowledge of the modern technology landscape varies widely across a range of topics, according to a new knowledge quiz conducted by the Pew Research Center as part of its ongoing series commemorating the 25th anniversary of the World Wide Web. To take the quiz for yourself before reading the full report, click here.

The survey—which was conducted among a nationally representative sample of 1,066 internet users—includes 17 questions on a range of issues related to technology, including: the meaning and usage of common online terms; recognition of famous tech figures; the history of some major technological advances; and the underlying structure of the internet and other technologies.

The “Web IQ” of American Internet Users

Substantial majorities of internet users are able to correctly answer questions about some common technology platforms and everyday internet usage terms. Around three-quarters know that a megabyte is bigger than a kilobyte, roughly seven in ten are able to identify pictures corresponding to terms like “captcha” and “advanced search,” and 66% know that a “wiki” is a tool that allows people to modify online content in collaboration with others. A substantial majority of online adults do not use Twitter, but knowledge of Twitter conventions is fairly widespread nonetheless: 82% of online Americans are aware that hashtags are most commonly used on the social networking platform, and 60% correctly answer that the service limits tweets to 140 characters.

On the other hand, relatively few internet users are familiar with certain concepts that underpin the internet and other modern technological advances. Only one third (34%) know that Moore’s Law relates to how many transistors can be put on a microchip, and just 23% are aware that “the Internet” and “the World Wide Web” do not, in fact, refer to the same thing.

Many online Americans also struggle with key facts relating to early—and in some cases, more recent—technological history. Despite an Oscar-winning movie (The Social Network) about the story of Facebook’s founding, fewer than half of internet users (42%) are able to identify Harvard as the first university to be on the site; and only 36% correctly selected 2007 as the year the first iPhone was released. The Mosaic web browser is an especially poorly-remembered pioneer of the early Web, as just 9% of online Americans are able to correctly identify Mosaic as the first widely popular graphical web browser.

When tested on their recognition of some individual technology leaders, a substantial 83% of online Americans are able to identify a picture of Bill Gates (although 10% incorrectly identified him as his long-time rival, former Apple CEO Steve Jobs). But just 21% are able to identify a picture of Sheryl Sandberg, a Facebook executive and author of the recent best-selling book Lean In.

Americans also have challenges accurately describing certain concepts relating to internet policy. Six in ten internet users (61%) are able to correctly identify the phrase “Net Neutrality” as referring to equal treatment of digital content by internet service providers. On the other hand, fewer than half (44%) are aware that when a company posts a privacy statement, it does not necessarily mean that they are actually keeping the information they collect on users confidential.

Age differences in web knowledge

Younger internet users are more knowledgeable about common usage terms, social media conventions

Younger internet users are more knowledgeable than their elders on some—but by no means all—of the questions on the survey. These differences are most pronounced on the questions dealing with social media, as well as common internet usage conventions. Compared with older Americans, younger internet users are especially likely to know that Facebook originated at Harvard University and that hashtags are commonly used on Twitter, to correctly identify pictures representing phrases like “captcha” and “advanced search,” and to understand the definition of a “wiki.”

At the same time, internet users of all ages are equally likely to believe—incorrectly—that the internet and the World Wide Web are the same thing. There are also no major age differences when it comes to the meaning of phrases like “Net Neutrality” or “privacy policy,” and older and younger internet users correctly identify pictures of Bill Gates and Sheryl Sandberg at comparable rates.

Educational differences in web knowledge

College grads more familiar with common tech terms

College graduates tend to score relatively highly on most Pew Research Center knowledge quizzes, and also tend to have high rates of usage for most consumer technologies. As such, it is perhaps not surprising that this group tends to do relatively well when it comes to knowledge of the internet and technology.

Compared with internet users who have not attended college, college graduates have much greater awareness of facts such as Twitter’s character limit, or the meaning of terms such as “URL” and “Net Neutrality.” Still, there are some elements of the technology world on which even this highly educated group rates poorly. For instance, just one in five correctly answered that the internet and World Wide Web are not the same thing, and only 12% know that Mosaic was the first widely available graphical web browser.

Author:  AARON SMITH

Source:  http://www.pewinternet.org/

Categorized in Science & Tech

With over 1 million apps in the Apple App Store, finding useful, must-have iPhone apps can be a difficult process.

The following is a list that showcases 21 of the best, must-have iPhone apps that you may not be familiar with, and includes iPhone applications for news, weather, productivity, games, photography, and finance.

If your favorite iPhone app isn’t on the list, tell us in the comments below!

News/Weather

#1: Umano

Too busy to read? With Umano, you can listen to articles from the world’s best publishers and bloggers narrated by professional voice-actors. Whether commuting, working out at the gym, or cooking at home, let Umano accompany you and enrich your day.

umano

#2: Prismatic

Prismatic is the home for all your interests. You select your interests and topics and Prismatic will curate and find stories based on the popularity of the post. You can comment on stories, talk with friends, and share the articles via Twitter and Facebook.

prismatic

#3: Feedly

Without Google Reader, Feedly has taken over as the de facto king of RSS news readers. You can import your Google RSS feeds into Feedly and easily share content on Twitter, Facebook and Google+, either directly or using Buffer. The app also integrates with Pocket, Instapaper and Evernote.

feedly

#4: theCHIVE

theCHIVE is the world’s largest photo blog showcasing original galleries of funny photos & videos, epic fails, beautiful girls, groundbreaking photography, and art from all over the world.

theCHIVE

#5: Effing Weather

Tired of the same old weather app? Well, download the Effing Weather app and get over 100+ funny phrases that tell you the current weather such as:

– Are you Effing kidding me?
– Why don’t you tell your friends on Facebook how Effing hot it is
– For today’s Effing forecast, look outside

Productivity

#6: TalkTo

With TalkTo, you can text message with millions of local business in the US and Canada. You can see answers to other shoppers’ questions, and can ask your own.

talkto

#7: Glympse

Don’t text and drive. Glympse is the easiest way to safely share your location with someone in real time. Recipients receive a link allowing them to view your location in real-time.

glympse

#8: Sunrise Calendar

Sunrise Calendar is by far my favorite calendar app. Some of my favorite features include the ability to see faces and profiles of people you are meeting with using LinkedIn, the weather forecast based on your location, and smart icons based on the topic of your meeting.

sunrise

#9: Clarity

Are you struggling with a certain part of your business? Clarity makes it easy for you to find, schedule and pay for expert advice over the phone to grow your business. Experts are categorized based on their specialties and you can see reviews for each expert before booking a call.

Games

#10: Fun Run

I don’t play too many games on the iPhone, but Fun Run is one that both my 5-year-old son and I enjoy. Fun Run is an online, real-time multi-player game where you can play with up to four players simultaneously. Play with your friends or get matched with random players from around the world!

fun_run

#11: Your Extra Life

YourExtraLife is a real-life game. You can progress by completing challenges in cooking, nightlife, romance, culture, altruism.

The app comes with pre-crafted challenges. To complete a challenge, you must submit a picture to prove it and judges within the community verify that your picture does match with the challenge.

yourextralife

#12: Revel

Revel is a real-time, multiplayer, photo scavenger game. It combines game elements of bingo and a scavenger hunt where you hunt for and photograph people, scenarios and objects. Once you get 5 in a row – you win!

revel

#13: Lumosity

Designed by neuroscientists, Lumosity trains your memory and attention. Used by over 50 million people worldwide, Lumosity creates a Personalized Training Program that challenges your brain.

lumosity

#14: Find a Way, José

Find a Way, José is a great puzzle game where you attempt to move blocks in an effort to get the main character, José, to his bottle of tequila.

find_a_way_jose

Photos

#15: Cut Me In

Cut Me In is an easy to use app that allows you to crop yourself out of your original photo and superimpose yourself on a funny or unique background.

cut_me_in

#16: Momentage

With Momentage, you can craft and experience moments through combining photos, videos and SoundImages into a single post to create a vivid storytelling moment on your iPhone. Share your moments with the world or with just your friends.

momentage

#17: Frontback

Frontback takes a unique spin on the photo taking experience. Take a photo with the front camera, another with the back camera, and share them both in a single image.

frontback

#18: POP – Prototyping on Paper

Do you have an idea for an iPhone app? POP is one of the easiest way to quickly make a prototype. Draw your idea on paper, take a picture of your drawings, and finally link each screen in POP. You will have a working prototype within minutes.

pop

#19: 4 Snaps

Created by 16 year old teen, Michael Sayman, 4 Snaps is a social picture snapping and guessing game where you pick a word and take four pictures that best represent your chosen word. Then it’s your friend’s turn to guess the word based on your pictures.

4snaps

Finance

#20: Toshl

Toshl is a simple to use personal finance manager. It easily tracks income and expenses, organizes your bills, and allows you to manage your budget. New York Times says “of all the apps for monitoring spending, one of the hardest to beat is Toshl Finance.”

toshl

#21: Level Money

While a lot of finance apps show you a myriad of information (mostly meaningless), Level Money shows you exactly how much money you have left to spend given your budget. All you have to do is connect your bank account

Author:  Steve Young

Source:  http://www.lifehack.org/

Categorized in Science & Tech

Apple is plotting two research and development centers in China. The designer of consumer electronics cites stronger collaboration with “manufacturing partners” as a reason. That’s probably just a slice out of the real fruit that’s hanging over Apple’s head. Other likely reasons suggest Apple is keener than ever to hold onto its threatened status as a must-have brand for Chinese consumers.

Here are five other reasons Apple is pushing its R&D in China, according to views collected from tech industry analysts.

1. More iPhone sales. Apple once had a market of 25.4% in China, edging out Samsung in late 2014. It now lags local Android-based brands such as Huawei and OPPO, which led market share polls for the first time in June. In the second quarter of this year, Apple shipped 8.6 million smartphones, a 31.7% decline from a year ago. Huawei led with 19.1 million units, market research firm IDC reports. Sales of iPhones went on to fall 33% in the third quarter this year versus the same period of 2015. More R&D in China means access to employees of those local brands, who might defect over to Apple for the right salary package.

This picture taken on April 22, 2015 shows Chinese workers posing with a cheaper local alternative to the Apple Watch, made on their assembly line in a factory producing thousands every day in Shenzhen, in southern China’s Guangdong province. (STR/AFP/Getty Images)

2. The image it’s tied to China’s economy. Like other foreign brands, Apple gets accused in China of just wanting to make money and leave. This image issue matters as the nationalistic Chinese find they can make smartphones on their own and need not depend on a foreign brand even if it’s a traditional status symbol. “Foreign companies in the past have been accused of capitalistic carpet bagging in China, so R&D is a good public relations move to show commitment to Chinese consumers,” says Danny Levinson, an early-stage tech investor with Matoka Capital in Beijing.

3. A better idea of what the Chinese user wants. Chinese consumers traditionally look to foreign brands for durability and status. But foreign developers, especially those with a one-size-fits-all model such as the iPhone, easily fail to match other expectations. About half of Chinese digital consumers use an electronic device while watching TV, for example, and “switching between different platforms is becoming more common,” Accenture found in a 2014 report. And because China’s middle class is new and shy, consumers prefer Android models over the iPhone for the price. The Beijing and Shenzhen R&D centers will help Apple grasp these trends by being close to some of China’s top tech firms and universities. Can it develop a $320 iPhone?

4. A lead over Google. Google has a troubled history in China over refusal to censor search results. It shut down its Chinese search engine in 2010 after a hack attack. But Chinese smartphone brands all use its Android operating system and you hear murmurings about the Silicon Valley software icon’s hope to expand R&D if not in China at least near it. That reentry would be a direct threat against Apple. “The first and obvious (concern) is that they do not want Google to be back in China and not them,” says Alicia Garcia, chief Asia Pacific economist with the French investment bank Natixis.

5. Reliable relationships with supplies. Apple’s supply chain depends increasingly on China in addition to its historical sourcesJapan, Korea and Taiwan. Shenzhen, site of Apple’s second planned Chinese R&D center after Beijing, is bubbling over with companies that can supply or assemble high-tech gear at decent prices. Desay Battery and Sunwoda Electronics provide batteries, for example. Apple has worked as well with BYD, a Shenzhen assembler and component maker. BYD ended up filing a patent lawsuit. Analysts still warn that Chinese companies will steal technology, sometimes for relaunch it as a knockoff brand. It’s clear why Apple needs stronger relations with suppliers.

Author:  Ralph Jennings

Source:  http://www.forbes.com/

Categorized in Science & Tech

For some companies, using cloud services isn’t what they hoped or expected it to be. Reason’s like these might be enough to make them leave.

1. Your costs went out of the control.

This can be significant. Prices go up and go down. A new product gets introduced that might be more financially attractive—but only if you started from that point and not if you include the added cost of migration (documentation, security and other audit) not to mention re-budgeting and rate of return over the lifecycle of the data flows.

2. Security was tougher than you thought.

You were probably smart and already had extensive key control, but perhaps your cloud vendor wanted it done their way. Asset control, the cost of embedding security control planes and audit infrastructure that duplicates data center standards created a duopoly of security infrastructure—perhaps both equal but not the same—adding to costs of control, training, documentation, audit and more.

3. Moving stuff among cloud vendors takes the skills of a science fiction writer.

There are some decent methodologies for making atomic, rather than dependent, cloud constructions so that they can be moved (mostly) en masse to a new target cloud provider’s infrastructure with comparative ease. Few organizations base their relationships on the mandate that assets must be mobile rather than dependent on a cloud provider’s secret sauce. Then they weep.

4. Your APIs are not only ignored, but unsupported.

Hooks to your management, networking and administrative control planes are mandatory. You may be on your own getting support for them because often the hooks live, in theory, somewhere, and are managed by, um, someone. It’s best to know that your control plane is supported before you start moving assets.

5. Cloud tech support is available. Just available.

Imagine my complete surprise when I moved my meager infrastructure into the cloud to find support is available only Monday through Friday from 8 a.m.-6 p.m. Mountain time. I’m moving out shortly. My data center is hosted at Expedient, which has data centers increasingly around the country. Those nightshift people live for something to do that’s both interesting and complex. Black-belt support personnel are doing comparatively mundane graveyard shift stuff. I should’ve moved there.

6. Someone’s constantly trying to snack on your assets with new and ingenious, cloud vendor implementation-specific wedges.

I won’t say much about this other than use a search engine and look up “$cloudprovider hacks”. Have a nice day.

7. Only DevOps uses it, and they have the housekeeping skills of a dorm resident.

Audit your stuff. Find out exactly what’s being used, why it’s being used and what the budget was. You’re supposed to get a return on investment, somehow, on the dough you’re spending in the cloud. My best friends are developers, and they sometimes have all of the cleanliness of teenagers.

8. Cloud apps are digesting your data, and you’re paranoid that it’s being reassembled somehow, somewhere, by your competitors.

This is something I worry a lot about, knowing the deftness of big data analysis engines and their thoroughness. Do you look at the terms and conditions thoroughly? Do you worry about conflation from your SaaS providers? I do.

9. The complexity of managing several notions of infrastructure has created a mess and one that doesn’t meet the tests of audit, compliance or even credulity.

You thought one infrastructure was tough and the cloud ought to be a part of your “one data infrastructure,” but for many it is not—it’s a duplication. It’s more licensing cost. More training. More disaster recovery cost. More personnel. More documentation. More turf in general. The complexity factors rise. Maybe they rise to the point where a re-assertion of sanity is warranted for some organizations.

10. Your cloud vendor once again altered their business model, and now you’re left wondering what they’ll do next quarter.

Depending on contractors is always fraught. As the industry heards move here and there, new initiatives render new, if more daunting (perhaps productive) prospects. Periodic review of cloud vendor direction is needed. The problem is some cloud vendors are now so large, you can spend a week at their vanity trade show and be none the wiser.

Author:  Tom Henderson

Source:  http://www.networkworld.com

Categorized in Science & Tech

Mobile has officially overtaken desktop as the primary means of using the internet.

Questioning this yet? Look no further than Google’s latest change in their algorithm. The internet search giant recently announced that they would release a mobile search index separate from their existing desktop index. This is the way Google scans websites and ultimately determines where sites come up in search rankings. This change alone is already a major change, but the clincher is the fact that this new mobile index will be the primary method of determining search ranking.

Considering how fast people are adopting smartphones and tablets, it’s a wise move that flows with the logical progression of the web. Desktop searches, once Google’s lifeline, have been overtaken and account for less than 45 percent of all searches done on the web for some time now. As it turns out, more often people do use mobile devices to look stuff up.

But now that this decision by Google to index sites via mobile first is here waiting to be rolled out, there are more questions than answers. How exactly is the mobile index going to work? How will this affect websites that put less content on their mobile site than their desktop site? How often will the desktop index be maintained?

The answers to these questions will be much clearer in the coming months, but it’s safe to say that the following insights can help your business plan ahead now:

Make your site mobile-friendly

You’d think most sites already have this, but a surprising number still don’t. If you’re one of those businesses who’ve been putting off a mobile version, you now don’t have much choice left but to adapt. Otherwise, your site will rank poorly on search engine result pages, and that’s something you don’t want to happen. Google takes into account in search rankings whether your site is mobile friendly or not.

Fill your mobile site with relevant content

Due to the compact sizes of handheld devices, a lot of mobile sites carry far less content than their desktop counterparts. This can make it for easier viewing on smaller screens. But with Google’s new algorithm, mobile sites will also have to be optimized, more so than desktop sites, and need to carry the full website content. No longer can there be a simpler mobile version with less content. If this is the case, that site will hurt in searches. The key would be to have a responsive website, one that “responds” to the device (mobile, tablet, desktop) that the user is on, and that at any device size it has the full website content.

Design a mobile strategy

Mobile used to be an alternative, an option. But things have changed. It’s now the default, relegating desktop queries to minority status. This means you need a mobile strategy more than ever. If you’re still attached to the desktop, you have to change your mindset and make mobile your primary concern. Font size, page load speed, scroll depth, and responsiveness are just some of the design elements you must consider for your mobile site. As well, lead capture is important to consider. How can you have a great mobile user experience that helps you capture leads? That’s a great strategy piece to have in place!

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The world is going mobile, and so should your site. Google is already at the helm, so act now if you don’t want to be left behind.

Mike Gingerich is President of Digital Hill Multimedia (www.DigitalHill.com), a Goshen web design and marketing agency. He is also a co-founder of TabSite.com and Waftio.com, leading software tools for contests and lead capture. Listen to his social media and web podcast, Halftime Mike, available on iTunes and at www.MikeGingerich.com.

Author:  Mike Ginerich

Source:  http://www.goshennews.com/

Categorized in News & Politics

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